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re: Water changes, and dying fish?

Had the same thing happen to me last week.  I even posted asking about
Phosphate shock.   How do you add water to the tank?  Via the python, or
buckets?  I use a python.  I add Prime directly to the tank, then add
water.   One time I added water to the tank w/o adding Prime (forgot).
I was watching the fish and they were acting funny, then it hit me, I
never added anything to dechlorinate the water!  Immediately grabbed the
bottle of Prime and they were all fine.  Could you possibly have forgot?

I lost 11 fish last week and I was very upset. I lost 6 of my 9
Harlequins, all 4 Penguin tetras, and one large Scissortail.  Those fish
were 1.5 years old.

Just a word of advice regarding your pH.  I use Crushed Coral because my
pH can run too low.  You have a high problem.  What kind of fish do you
have?  Could you possibly just get fish that like hard water and not
mess around with the pH?  There are plenty of fish that like 8.0 pH.

And how often are you doing water changes?  If 25% weekly you should be
fine.  If doing 50% bi-weekly or longer you are inviting trouble. I'm
sure you know that doing a 50% water change changes the water parameters
too quickly for the fish. I'm sorry I don't know your knowledge level of
fish keeping.  I hope I have helped.   Oh.. and with regards to the
water company...I thought the same thing also, but most of the time it
comes down to "operator error".   We are to blame.  You just have to
look back and assess the situation.  Most of the time the answer is
right there in front of us.