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NFC: Unhealthy Tanks

I stopped at a nature center in Batavia, IL the other day that had two 125
gal aquariums featuring fish from the Fox river (hard to believe anything
actually lives in there).  One tank had what looked like about 10 creek
chubs (3"-6"), a variety of sunfish (2"-4"), and one dead madtom. The other
tank had a 8" largemouth bass, one big bluegill (about 10"), a green sunfish
(about 7"), and 3 sunfish of indeterminate species (all about 5").  Both
tanks were decorated mostly with flat rocks, and neither one had more than
three or four plastic plants.

All of the sunfish in the chub tank had fins so shredded, it was hard to
believe they could actually swim. A few had nothing but stubs for tails.
Some of the chubs looked a little ratty too, but not as bad as the sunnies.
Most of the fish in this tank, despite their condition, were very active. 

In the tank with the bass, the big 'gill reigned supreme, the green sunnie
hid behind some rocks, and the other sunnies were bunched together, noses
up, in one corner of the tank. This trio was so pale, it was difficult to
tell what species they were. All of the sunnies in this tank exhibited signs
of hole-in-the-head disease. The bass, besides showing no markings, seemed

Anybody have any clues as to what is going wrong in these tanks, and what
might be done to remedy the situation?

Tony Gustafson
DeKalb, IL
The only problem with the gene pool is 
there is no lifeguard.

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