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Author Topic: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!  (Read 2129 times)
Peppa
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Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« on: March 09, 2010, 07:24:34 AM »

My tank glass and ornaments are completely covered in a thick dark orange/brown substance. This has only appeared suddenly. I have removed and cleaned the ornaments completely cleaned the glass and replaced the carbon filter - two days later it is back with a vengance. Yet the water is crystal clear

Im reluctant to do a significant water change as the water is perfectly balanced and cycled and it has taken me some time to get here.

ANy adivce on A) what this is and B) how to treat it? Is it some form of algae? If green I would recognise it but its the colour whcih is weird. Also its not filaments or anything. Just liek this sort of scum compeltey settling on anything it can. Weird.......
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Katarine
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2010, 12:42:38 PM »

That sounds kind of disgusting. If I didn't know any better, I'd say it was copper deposits in your water. Is it crystals or is it like a sludge?
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Peppa
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2010, 12:50:12 PM »

no its def not copper deposits

its like a sludge but like I say the water itself is crystal clear. This stuff is on the glass and the decor in the tank

Im guessing its some form of algae just not green like I assumed algae to be
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Katarine
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2010, 01:22:30 PM »

Yea thats what I was thinking to. Algae isn't always green like it's assumed to be. I'm gonna hazard a guess that it is on fact algae. Where is your tank ,located? like, near a window or other natrural light source?
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Mindemae
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2010, 02:38:47 PM »

Unforunately, it's algae and not at all harmful to your tank.  Any tank that has cycled and has nitrates present is going to present with an algae bloom like that.  Live plants can keep the algae down and the best thing to get rid of it on the glass tank is one of those magnetic algae cleaners.  They work wonders so you can see your fish! Grin
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Peppa
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2010, 03:39:34 AM »

ok thats great. Thanks

Its never ending this but Im getting there. Just chuffed that finally my water cycle is great and Ive learnt the best thing is actually to stop messing about and let things be.....
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shannon
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2010, 11:41:19 PM »

Hi guys, how's it going?  I am pretty new here, and I have unlimited questions so please forgive me!  When I first got my fish they were so easy to care for - now I feel llike they are pretty high maintenance!  I have three goldfish (some of you prolly saw my post under another topic), 2 comets/common, and 1 fancy.  They are about 5 years old and have gotten pretty big!  I am not really good at keeping my tank pretty for them..  I think because I have no idea what I'm doing  Undecided!  I prolly do more harm than good.. Sad.  Anyway, my water is consistently cloudy with a reddish tint, I am thinking because of the flakes I feed, but does that mean that I am feeding too much?  They always look hungry and I don't want to starve them Sad.

Also, I was reading some other posts around here, and it seems like you guys generally discourage changing the filters - or I read it wrong because I'm pretty pooped  Tongue.  Anyway, if you don't recommend changing the filters, how do you keep it from getting clogged?  It seems like mine has a lot of fish goodies in it or food, if you know what I mean.  Normally when I do a water change I also clean out the filter box and rinse the filters... I am thinking this is a mistake :X.  I actually use a filter system for a 50 gallon tank because my tank seems so dirty all the time.  It is a 3 system one that sits on the back of the tank.  It has a carbon, sponge, and an antimicrobial part.  I don't know if this is even a good system/setup to use  Undecided

Lasssstly  Tongue, I get this roaming algae..  it goes away after I clean the tank, but it shows up if I go longer between water changes/cleanings. The tank is near a window so that it is easier to clean (kitchen location Smiley).  I have two vaieties, one is orange/red tinted, the other is black.  The black one seems harder to remove from the glass,and it has also made a home for itself on the airrock fixture.  I am sorry to post so many random probaly awful questions, if you know any good fishy books for lost people such as myself just let me know, or any good websites on how to get the tank going properly.  Let me know if I left out any important information and thanks for any help!  Oh, my tank is 30 gallons Smiley.  It seems like that should be a sufficient size for them.. they are about 5in long... but maybe I am wrong on that too :X.  They never stop growing!  I would love to have clear water, just need to figure out how to get it Cheesy
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Hanna
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #7 on: June 20, 2010, 03:25:44 AM »

Hi Shannon,

First of all having the tank next to a window is one BIG mistake. Being there and probably exposed to sunlight IS NOT GOOD AT ALL.
This encourages algae growth. Also it causes fluctuations in temperature which GF do not like. They get stressed and so more prone to infections and deseases.

We do change the filters, certainly but only after 4-6 weeks I change the whole carbon cartridge. But when I do the weekly 15% waterchanges I siphon the gravel and sample the old tankwater in a bucket. I never use this bucket for anything else, no chemicals in it or so. Then I rinse the filter media in this old tankwater to get rid of the most poo. Sometimes I rinse the ceramic noodles too, but not every time. Please DO NOT RINSE IN TAP WATER, because all or most of the beneficial bacteria would be rinsed away. The inside of the tank glass I wipe with a sponge, which again is ONLY for the tank.

After all is done I top up with the fresh water I prepared initially. Make sure the temp is the same. Adjust pH. Use waterconditioner, it eliminates chlorine, chloramines, some detoxify Ammonia, Nitrites too. I use water Ager and Algae Control.
Also very important to keep the water chemistry under control.

But sometimes even if you do everything like you are supposed to, sth can go wrong, like our pH in the tank dropped to about 6.0-6.2. Goldfish thrive best in pH 7.4-7.8. So they were stressed. Finally I managed to get the pH up to 7.0 with a Neutralizer Block. I also researched what the reason could be for a pH drop: pockets of uneaten food in the gravel, plant leaves which decompose, poop, if they are overfed and poop the amounts to the food they ate.

So regular siphoning is essential, clean out out floating plantleaves or pieces.

Goldfish always beg for food and want to eat. They won't starve. Even if you feed less only once a day, they nibble on plants, like having a salad snack. Sometimes it helps if you put them on a diet for a few days.

Hope this helps  Smiley
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Nossie
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2010, 04:25:00 AM »

Shannon: I agree completely with what Hanna has told you already, but I do have a few extra points...

I noticed that you're afraid to let the fish starve, and NO, you shouldn't feed them everytime they beg for food, this will only cause problems in the long run. So feed them only small amounts of food, one pinch at a time for a minute or so, and at most 3 times a day. It's not unhealthy for a goldfish if it's left without food for a day or two, it's rather a good thing as it gives the fish some time to rinse the digestive tract. If this gets clogged (which it will, if you'll feed them only flakes) the fish will suffer from swim bladder problems. So start feeding them some veggies, like peas and cucumber, and live-foods, like freeze-dried blood worms. (You can try any veggies and fruit, but don't leave it in the tank for too long)

You shouldn't change the filter pads with every water change, this will disturb the beneficial bacteria in your tank, and you might just kill your fish. Like Hanna said, you should clean the filter pads in old tank water, keep a bucket of that when you change it, and clean the filter media in that. It's good to go for another couple of weeks! And about this carbon filter, it's much better to keep that only for a limited amount of time, because even if it's really good for removing chemicals from the water, it WILL get clogged rather fast, and then all the chemicals will pour out, and might just poison your fish. So if you want to keep carbon filters there, you need to change them regularly, like every 2-3 weeks or so.

These algae aren't good algae. You should be happy if you had green ones, but black and orange are not very nice.. these are probably grown from excess algae, and high temperatures because of the sunlight. I recommend that you move that tank asap... and start feeding your fish less. If you have any live plants, that would help greatly with the algae as well.

And for good books... you could check out "Encyclopedia of Aquarium and Pond Fish" by David Alderton, contains a load of info about how to choose tanks, locations for it, and how to care for it and feed the fish properly. Another good book, for more experienced goldfish keepers is "Fancy Goldfish, A complete guide to care and collecting" by Dr. Erik L. Johnson and Richard E. Hess.
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Mindemae
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2010, 12:07:56 PM »

Hi Shannon,
Now you get my 2 cents added to the rest (well you asked! Cheesy) as they are spot on about advice, but really 30 gallons for 2 commons is really ok but you also have the fancy which is pushing it a bit!:)
Also, if you are seeing food in your filter media when you go to do a change or a rinse then that means YOU ARE FEEDING WAY TOO MUCH! More than your fish can consume.  Drop a few pieces of food in and watch and make sure it is all eaten up.  Don't just sprinkle or drop food in by guess.  All the food should be eaten at one feeding!
Leftover food, wastes will cause an algae bloom and also LOCATION!!  Your tank sitting by a window will encourage unwanted algae blooms.
 ALWAYS RINSE YOUR FILTER MEDIA IN TANK WATER.
Do you test your water?  I'm guessing from the sounds of your tank situation that the nitrates are off the charts.
Nitrates should be around 40 ppm.  Test also for ph, ammonia and nitrites and nitrates weekly.
You will want to do big water changes weekly and also change your filter every 4 weeks like Hanna suggested, until your test results are Ammonia and nitrites zero and nitrates you want to keep at 40 ppm or less.
If your filter gets totally clogged and unrinsable then by all means change it but rinse the new filter pad with tank water taken from the tank.
Do you have live plants in your tank?  Live plants will compete with the algae and leave your tank cleaner looking, as well as absorbing some of the nitrates, but you have to snip off any leaves that have died or turned brown weekly when you do a water change.  You can also use a chemical algae remover you can buy at any petstore or retail store that sells aquatic products.
Also, I LOVE LOVE LOVE my magnetic algae glass cleaner!!!  You can also buy these at retail aquatic places.
As for a great book:  I LOVE Spenser Glass's books.  Very easy to understand.  You might want to check out "SETTING UP AN AQUARIUM" BY Spencer Glass.  Another fabulous book is "GOLDFISH GUIDE" BY Dr. Yoshiichi Matsui and Dr. Herbert R. Axelrod.  And the books Nossie suggested are fabulous too! Smiley
Well good luck to you my goldfish friend and please give us an update!  I bet you have that tank turned around in no time! Wink
« Last Edit: June 23, 2010, 06:53:43 PM by Mindemae » Logged
creamkiller
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2010, 01:03:45 PM »

everone is right brown diadom algae it is because u have the lights on for to long and all the food does not get eatin i get the same thing it come off with a cloth u can do it while everthing is in the tank. as long as the cloth pick it up. it will tirn your cloth brown though not harmful for the fish. just feed them less and shut the windows. i disagree with others. u can put the tank by the window sunlight is a good thing. for salt water fish u have to buy a light that work like the sun. just make sure u close the blinds. only 8 hours of light a day MAX good luck
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Nossie
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2010, 01:11:06 PM »

creamkiller: Marine fish would die right away if you'd keep them by a window. They are incredibly sensitive to any changes in temperature and water chemistry, since they're used to living in the ocean where the water rarely, or never changes.

It's common sense that a TANK should never be kept in the sun, EVER. But a pond is a different story, but it should still be in a place where it's shady pretty much during the hot summer days.
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shannon
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2010, 02:34:02 PM »

Hi guys,

Thanks for all the tips!  Definitely helpful, and I will have to order those books on Amazon so I can answer more questions myself  Tongue.  The tank is near windows, but it probably doesn't get more than an hour or so of light in the morning because we have those mini window things and I think it gets hit when the sun is rising.  I'll have to get some window coverings or something.  The tank temp doesn't seem to change too much, it is usually in the vicinity of 75F...  is that too warm/cold?

I try to mix up their food a bit, they like spinach Smiley.  And they got bloodworms this morning.  I usually only feed them once a day.  I tried live plants a few times in the past but the fish always uproot them and I kept having to replant them and eventually they died  Undecided.  The algae is actually a dark green color, it just looked black with the lights off (duh on my part).

When you say the "filter media,", do you mean the different parts?  Like how mine has 3 different dudes it cycles through?  Also, is there a way to clean out the mechanical part?  I don't know if that makes sense..  How do you pre-prep the water?  I do have a bucket that I use for water changes, but I usually add it to the tank and then add the stresscoat/water conditioner stuff.  I siphon the gravel like nobody's business Smiley.  So when you change the carbon filter, do you change the other parts?  Or does yours only have tehe carbon type?  How do you actually clean the filter parts?  Just slush them around in the old tank water?

I do test but I bought the wrong kind of kit, it is just basic Ph, and  it always shows about 7 (blue Huh) but that's the only thing it shows me so for nitites/nitrates i have no idea.  Is it possible to keep the aquarium decorations clean?  It is really gross looking!

Thanks for all the tips!! Smiley
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Nossie
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2010, 03:01:34 PM »

Neh, the temp is fine as long as it doesn't change much Smiley

You could try some more hardy plants, like Anubias or Java Fern Smiley Both of these are great with goldfish!
Filter media are the sponges or the ceramic things, that are filtrating the water. You simply clean the filter in tank water, you can use a little sponge (only for the tank!!) if needed Smiley And you should add the water conditioner to the bucket before adding it to the tank, but I can't really see why it'd matter much d:
You can clean the tank decor the same way Smiley

That's good pH, but you can buy nitrite and nitrate tests separately as well Smiley At least get the nitrate test
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shannon
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2010, 03:07:44 PM »

Do you guys think it is just cloudy because the filters need to be cleaned?  I will try feeding them less, and maybe in the evening instead of the morning so I have time to make sure that they eat it all.  Thanks again for all the help!
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Nossie
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2010, 03:15:17 PM »

it could be cloudy partly because of over-feeding, but also because of the fact that you've been exchanging your filter cartridges too often, so the tank is trying to cycle. And the only way to know that for sure would be to test the water for ammonia and nitrites.
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Mindemae
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2010, 03:18:15 PM »

75 is a bit warm IMO.  Do you have a heater in your tank?  If you kept your tank around 70, you would probably see a difference.  If your water is cloudy it's probably from good bacteria trying to find a home within your filter, tank.
Try adding stresszyme right to your filter as that will help boost the cycling process.  If you kept changing yur filter your tank might have not cycled properly.  If I were you I would get a master test kit that would test for ammonia and nitrates and nitrites too.
Warmer water makes the fish's metabolism higher and so hence more wastes via oxygen usage and they are hungrier and eat more and then they well poop more! Cheesy  Which feeds the algae more!
Did you try potted plants in your tank with rocks over the top?  They may not be able to move a bit bigger stone in the pots.
You can take your whole filter apart.  Just rinse the filter and all the mechanical parts in syphoned tank water so you don't disrupt the good bacteria.  I clean my tank ornaments in salt water and use a toothbrush.  It works fabulous!
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creamkiller
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #17 on: June 20, 2010, 05:12:53 PM »

marine fish will be fine by the window to u just have to keep a eye on the temp. and close the blinds when need be. just like in the ocean it will be a liitle warmer in the day and cooler at night
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Mindemae
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2010, 06:01:08 PM »

I don't even understand why we are talking about Marine fish since she is asking about her tank of goldfish.
Marine fish require complete different environments and water chemistry than do a few goldfish! Huh
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Katarine
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2010, 07:39:38 PM »

Yea! what they said.. Sometimes I come on here and dont feel overly intelligent.. all I say is test the water and all that jazz.. Ummm.. yea! so I agree marine fish need a different treatment than regular goldfish.
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Nossie
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #20 on: June 21, 2010, 03:36:01 AM »

Kat & Mindemae: Why yeah, and with a marine tank, you need to test liek... 100 more things than with a coldwater tank for goldfish. You need to look for copper, which is harmful to invertebrates, the salinity level, and be sure that it'll stay constant... etc. Then you also have to check the usual stuff, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate, but these marine fish WILL DIE if any nitrate is present, they're incredibly sensitive to changes in their environment. Therefore you should keep live rocks, and protein skimmers along with the fish to be sure that the nitrates are handled. (Not to mention the power filter, sometimes combined with an undergravel filter.) It's a crazy piece of work, and I don't think I would be able to take care of something like this xD

Creamkiller: And no, I completely refuse to agree with keeping marine fish by a window. Common physics say that water loses and gains temperature incredibly slowly, so comparing the sea with a little 50 gallon tank is... just not right. Because this 50 gallon will change the temp drastically if kept in the sun. Besides, keeping the tank away from a window saves you the trouble of covering the window so... why bother making it more difficult than it need be?
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Katarine
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #21 on: June 21, 2010, 04:45:09 AM »

you said it, Nossie! Tongue

THUS why i wanna only keep goldfish! XD
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Andrea
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #22 on: June 21, 2010, 06:46:31 AM »

Saltwater fish (and generally their aquariums) are so purty though Smiley
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Katarine
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #23 on: June 21, 2010, 09:15:36 AM »

yea.... so maybe ill try it....
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creamkiller
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #24 on: June 21, 2010, 11:50:52 AM »

i was taking about marine tank because I have both goldfish and marine tank. and we have a pond over 700 gallons. for the marine tank if u only keep fish your nitrate level are the same as goldfish. but if u have snails crabs. your nitrate has to be below 10 trust me it is not that hard to do  Cheesy

Nossie i know its harder to keep them by the window. i was just saying it can be done. I have my marine tank near window and about 20 feet away from the fire place(my goldfish tank is closer) u just need to know what u are doing.u can get chillers for them my fish guy just puts ice in his tank when need be. they have a temp range of 74-80
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creamkiller
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #25 on: June 21, 2010, 01:33:23 PM »

Katarine u could do a salt water tank. your filter have to move 5 x your tank gallon s for a 10 gallon tank your filter needs to move 50 gallons per hour min  and u should never have a tank smaller then 30 gallons. start with clowns or damsals they are as tough as goldfish
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creamkiller
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #26 on: June 21, 2010, 02:01:00 PM »

1 more thing

salt water way more money i have 150$ in live rock and sand thats from the wholesaler after u get started it is as easy as goldfish u just have to mix salt water or buy seawater then all u do is pour it in no measuring and melafix can be used in saltwater to Grin
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Katarine
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2010, 06:43:59 PM »

Kay guys I have a question now

Theres a guy near me who is selling a twenty gallon tank and three fishes for 150 dollars. the fish seem healthy, i havent looked yet, but does it SOUND like a good buy?
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Nicole
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #28 on: June 22, 2010, 02:11:16 AM »

That seems like a pretty decent price if you're talking U.S. dollars.
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Hanna
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Re: Tank is being attacked - Help!!!
« Reply #29 on: June 22, 2010, 07:33:08 AM »

Sounds good to me, I'd jump and have a look.  Grin
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