3 posts

Discuss all topics related to freshwater and planted tanks.

Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Dec 03, 2007 11:01 pm


by nature100

I set up a 29 gal freshwater native plant and fish tank several months ago. Local gravel / sand, driftwood, native plants and a couple of small Pumpkinseed ( ea. about 3-4").

When I first caught them they displayed rich dark emerald greens, gold, red, and aquas. After about a month in the tank their color is pale.

Why has this happened? Any way to get them to display richer coloring?

I do frequent water changes. I feed a mix of cichlid pellets, worms, and hamburger. I've tried less light. I even added a salt and essential mineral additive, without any change in coloring.

Anybody have any ideas on this ....? Thx.

ANSWER: Proposed by local pet store owner - hydrogen sulfide, produced by break down of organic matter in the substrate and released during tank maintenance as small bubbles.

Anybody else here have an idea?

Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2007 4:44 pm

by Sig2293794

Stress, Yes that's my final answer.

Ok well maybe not, a few suggestions first.

First off, how established is your tank. If it's new, your ammonia levels may be too high. Also if your doing too many water changes, or too much water at one this too can cause your ammonia levels to rise, and your fish to become stressed.

Are you using de-chlorinator in your water? Are you adding it before you pour water back into your aquarium?

Are your fish homey? I mean do they have places to hide, or do you have a barron tank? You said you caught these fish so are their surroundings like that of which they came from? You/'d be upset to if someone plucked you out of your comfy chair and stuck you in a glass square. You may even look a little pale.

Your diet looks pretty good so I don't think that's the problem. The food your using especially that Cichlid pellets should help boost color.

Hydrogen Sulfide is a interesting thought, however this sounds like some guy that took chemistry in high school and wants to sound smart. H2S is caused from the break down of organic matter. However it's very easily detectable by humans. We can detect it down to about 0.0047ppm (parts per million). Detection is sensed first from our olfactory system(smell) It'll smell like rotten eggs or commonly sulfur(oddly enough has no smell but people associate the two). It's actually the same stuff that they mix with natural gas(which has no smell) so we can detect very minute leaks. Levels of 10-20ppm can cause eye irritation. Although my personal gas monitor at work (coke plant) alarms at 15ppm, it's generally considered not a real danger until your in the 50-100 ppm range.

The point here is if it was H2S you would be smelling rotten eggs coming from your aquarium.

Hope this helps.

Posts: 9
Joined: Tue Jan 22, 2008 7:42 pm

by subymanny04

at my local aquarium they sell phermones that u can add in their food to help bring out their vibrant colors. maybe try changing their diet to color enhancing foods. or also like said above, a lot of cichlids tend to lose color when they are stressed or feel agitated. make sure when u feed them that they look healthy and arent sick, cuz that could be a problem too. add more shelter like caves and plants in your tank, treat ur water, and give them color enhancing foods and you should be ok.


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