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platy cant swim down!

(23 Posts)
GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 10:44:39

one of my platys cant swim down, it is just floating on the top of the tank. It keeps trying to swim down but just bobs back to the top. help!

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 14:37:14

Sounds like a swim bladder problem and there are a few possible causes.

Sometimes constipation can cause problems and that's the easiest one to treat so you could start there- if you cook a pea and feed him the squished up inside part (NOT the skin!) then that will get things moving.

Other possible causes are bacterial/viral infection and deformity. The first one can be fixed, the second one not so much sad

But hopefully the pea will work and after a big poo he'll be back to normal.

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 18:14:43

how do you get him to actually eat the peas? they had sunk to the bottom and he is at the top!

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 18:47:59

If you squoosh it up enough it should sink really slowly. Can you stick it in the water as close to his face as you can?

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 20:32:30

he died! sad

one more question: why do my fish ( mostly mollies) swim at the top of the tank? they dont do it all of the time, but mostly at the end of the day they will be on the surface , not swimming around but look like they are just gulping air.

apart from this they seem happy, and will swim around. i have a long air stone in there. any ideas?

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 20:44:30

Aw, bummer sad Sorry to hear that.

It may be down to low oxygen saturation in the water- how big is the tank and how many fish do you have in there? Does the filter flow ripple the surface of the water?

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 20:54:45

tank is 150l , a good number of fish, but doesn't look over stocked. yes the filter does ripple the surface of the water.

how can I increase the oxygen saturation? what will happen longer term if i don't?

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 20:56:31

"what will happen longer term if i don't?" - that's sounds like i don't give a crap! grin

i just meant how long can they go with low oxygen saturation?

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 21:01:02

Ha, I know you give a crap otherwise you wouldn't be posting grin Low oxygen will cause shorter life span and will leave them vulnerable to infections.

How many fish have you got in there? What are the water readings like? What model filter have you got?

There's not much more you can do to increase oxygen saturation in the way of airstones etc. You could try adding a powerhead to increase flow I guess but it's better to address the root of the problem and solve it that way.

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 21:23:06

power head? what is that? do you have a link to the best place to purchase?

the filter is a large external one, fluval. possibly MSE?

Need to get new water testing kit, so unsure of readings.

I have lots of real plants. why does the air stone and plants not help oxygen saturation?

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 21:33:04

It does help oxygenation, but not loads. You need a large surface area and movement for gas exchange and there's only so much you can do if a tank is heavily stocked.

A powerhead is basically like an underwater fan, it gets the water flowing. They're good in larger tanks to keep things moving. Pretty much any online retailer will sell them, they might be with the marine stuff because they are more often used in marine tanks than freshwater. Something like this but tiny.

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 21:46:17

ah. cool, i shall invest. my filter did (seem to) be a lot stronger before.

Thank you again!!

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 21:47:15

Have you given the impeller a good clean lately? Sometimes the flow gets reduced if they're gunked up.

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 21:54:08

I am not sure. I clean everything that I can reach. It is a box and the tubes unplug from the top, then you can take the top bit off and the filter media is in the bottom bit. I clean all the i can get too.

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 21:59:00

If you've got the 306 then it tells you here how to clean the impeller. They are delicate so be gentle!

TheNurseryCryme Sun 24-Mar-13 21:59:59

I read the thread title as 'platypus can't swim down' and was quite besides myself with jealousy that the op had a set platypus.

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 22:02:41

grin I have those too TheNurseryCryme, here

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 22:03:00

I found out the other day that a baby platypus is called a puggle.

Now I want one. Aren't they venomous though?

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 22:05:02

Thanks for the Eau, you are a real star! even DH has started saying ' ask Eaurouge' when i am having fish problems!

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 22:08:53

Oh no, I'm under pressure now grin

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 22:10:17

haha! don't worry, if you don't know you can just make it up - I wont know any difference! although fish might be a bit like this hmm

EauRouge Sun 24-Mar-13 22:12:44

Oh, OK. Your platys will feel much better if you sing to them. They are native to Central America so I'd go with some mariachi band music. HTH.

GoSuckEggs Sun 24-Mar-13 22:13:19


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