Tank Nuked! All Fish Dead

BRS

SurfTrack

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Hello. I came back from a 2 day leave and all my fish were randomly dead except for my one chromi. All my corals are opened and reacting normally. I did not notice any signs of disease nor were the fish acting any differently when I last saw them. I am very confused and do not know what could have killed them. Puffer fish was last to die but is it a possibility that it released its neurotoxin. Additionally, all of my inverts are alive and well. I appreciate any input. Here is the picture of my dead fish.

Tank specs:
1.5 year old
Red Sea Reefer 425 XL
Filtration: Red Sea Skimmer (oversized), mechanical filtration, carbon

64496119547__5EB68D7C-9A46-4C6B-B2AA-FEF130E03185.jpeg
 
RAP

WVNed

The fish are staring at me with hungry eyes.
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I am sorry for your loss. I know lots of things that could have done it. Did the power go off for several hours. Did someone spray something around the tank cleaning. Any children that might have dumped something in feeding the fish. There are many more.
I lost 7 fish one night when a breaker tripped. Nothing else was effected. That was why I mentioned that first.
 

Lost in the Sauce

BANGERANG!!!!
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You need to test all of your parameters specifically looking for ammonia and list them all.

Anything new in the tank? What has changed recently? Did your coral beauty have a tail when you left? The dead fish look very tattered. Could have been clean up crew after the fact could be part of the problem.

I'd get carbon running like yesterday.

Not enough info here, but I'm sorry for the loss. That's terrible.
 
OP
SurfTrack

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I am sorry for your loss. I know lots of things that could have done it. Did the power go off for several hours. Did someone spray something around the tank cleaning. Any children that might have dumped something in feeding the fish. There are many more.
I lost 7 fish one night when a breaker tripped. Nothing else was effected. That was why I mentioned that first.
Thx. And no my apex has been connected the entire time without interruption and I have gone over the last 48 hours, everything was stable. No children, and def no harsh cleaning supplies.
 
RAP

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Some diseases can progress very quickly from initial onset to mass mortality - Brook and Velvet are two that spring to mind. They're certainly not the only ones, but they're the most prevalent.

Your fish look pale and potentially malnourished, which could be either symptoms of whatever took them out or a symptom that you weren't feeding enough. Given the close clustering of their deaths, I'd put that down to disease rather than them not getting enough food. I'm not an expert in fish diseases by any means, but two of them do have large visibly white patches on them (the yellow tang and the larger pajama cardinal), which is consistent with both Brook and Velvet.

What we know is that the large vertebrate life was affected, but your corals and invertebrates were largely not. Inverts tend to be much more sensitive to water quality than fish, so unless there's a chemical that impacts fish but not inverts, I'm not inclined to blame it on water quality. Have you checked for stray voltage or malfunctioning equipment yet?
 
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SurfTrack

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You need to test all of your parameters specifically looking for ammonia and list them all.

Anything new in the tank? What has changed recently? Did your coral beauty have a tail when you left? The dead fish look very tattered. Could have been clean up crew after the fact could be part of the problem.

I'd get carbon running like yesterday.

Not enough info here, but I'm sorry for the loss. That's terrible.
They were all perfectly healthy when I left. Tested for ammonia already and its at zero. Already running carbon. I have a heavy CUC which ripped the dead bodies apart very quickly, I saw that with my own eyes.
 

WVNed

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The only things that can kill a diverse group like that are poisons added to the tank or an extreme environment change.
I guess you Apex would have noticed a heater burn. That will do it.

Pest control. Do you rent. I could guess all day.

Something happened you are not aware of.
The fish do not look thin to me. Discoloration and missing parts mean almost nothing once they have been dead a while. Many fish pass and even bits are never found because CUCs are so efficient.
 

ScottB

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Thx. And no my apex has been connected the entire time without interruption and I have gone over the last 48 hours, everything was stable. No children, and def no harsh cleaning supplies.
So sorry.

All your charts look normal? ORP and temperature history all nominal?
 
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SurfTrack

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Some diseases can progress very quickly from initial onset to mass mortality - Brook and Velvet are two that spring to mind. They're certainly not the only ones, but they're the most prevalent.

Your fish look pale and potentially malnourished, which could be either symptoms of whatever took them out or a symptom that you weren't feeding enough. Given the close clustering of their deaths, I'd put that down to disease rather than them not getting enough food. I'm not an expert in fish diseases by any means, but two of them do have large visibly white patches on them (the yellow tang and the larger pajama cardinal), which is consistent with both Brook and Velvet.

What we know is that the large vertebrate life was affected, but your corals and invertebrates were largely not. Inverts tend to be much more sensitive to water quality than fish, so unless there's a chemical that impacts fish but not inverts, I'm not inclined to blame it on water quality. Have you checked for stray voltage or malfunctioning equipment yet?
Haven't tested stray voltage, how do I even do that?
 
Zoanthids

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Pretty simple. Just requires a voltmeter.
 
AS

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Good post on stray voltage and possible red herring


Stray voltage doesn't affect inhabitants directly. It's the same principle as a bird sitting on a transmission line.

These are the real issues with stray voltage

1. Can sometimes indicate the epoxy protecting the electrical parts of a pump, heater, etc are failing. Once it fails completely, copper can be leached into the tank and cause a crash.

2. Depending on the severity, it can be a shock hazard for you.

3. It can affect probe readings and make them misread.

4. If something grounded enters the tank near the equipment producing the stray voltage and a fish swims between the two, it can be shocked by the current.
 

ariellemermaid

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Sorry for your loss! I can’t think of anything especially with the Apex confirming many of your tank parameters… Except, what you said in the OP about the puffer. Something, some toxin or disease killed almost every fish in an extremely short period of time. I think you’re right to consider a known source of toxin before venturing into the Terminix or bleach theory. The below post is the first thing I found about the possibility and DaddyFish reports seeing it happen. Reading to the bottom, it sounds like pufferfish can get stressed pretty easily and they don’t have to die to be lethal to other fish.

Two questions in this theory though…. Why did the puffer die? Did he get sick which caused the stress? Could it have been an ammonia spike from the mass die off? It tested zero, sure, but ammonia gets processed quickly in an established reef and you might have just missed it. Could be why he lived the longest though, only dying after the other fish were dead. Second, why weren’t inverts affected? I can’t find anything about them being susceptible to the toxin or not. They have very simple brains but they do have nervous systems that theoretically could be affected by the toxin. But would it kill them? I don’t know. Maybe if the puffer regurgitated, the other fish ate it all and the inverts weren’t even exposed. If there was ammonia I would expect some inverts to be affected but maybe there wasn’t. Maybe one fish just got sick, killed everything else, and then died. And the chromis just didn’t get any of the regurgitated food.

I wonder if @Jay Hemdal has any thoughts on your mass die off?

 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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Fish disease, no fallow, no qt likely or a hard scape item vectors something in

see fish disease forum…when all else lives and only fish die/


post your details in the disease forum

 
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