Friday evening I began to worry about my big fish Jocelyn because she was hovering above the rocks at the bottom of the tank. I went over in my head what could possibly be wrong with her. Old age isnâ€™t the problem. Able to live up to 25 years sheâ€™s just a youngster at age six. Sheâ€™s not been over fed, sheâ€™s not bloated, her bladder is healthy, whatâ€™s wrong? Usually the big fish is graceful and playful as she swims wit her two tank makes, but something has changed, something is off.
I went over in my head everything I did that could have affected her negatively. I changed 10% of her water on the same day as always. I checked the nitrate and nitrite levels. I checked the ammonia levels. I added conditioners to remove harmful minerals from tap water and finished off by checking the temperature. Everything went according to plan; nothing I could think of changed, so why was she at the bottom of the tank for now two days? Again and again I retraced my steps then it hit me, I didnâ€™t check the Ph levels. Turns out, the Ph dropped too low for her but not low enough to cause a noticeable change to the smaller fish. I added 1/4th teaspoon of baking soda and within a few short minutes she was her old self again. What a relief!
Â The painting shown is a fun illustration of the above week end. The figure represents me standing on a chair with my head all but in the tank trying to figure out what was going on with dear Jocelyn. You can see the worry around my head as I gently pat her on the back and tell her Iâ€™ll fix everything. The other fish are going about their business between the plants and decorations all without a clue that poor Jocelyn may be in serious trouble. To the relief of everyone the entire fish family is once again happy, healthy and swimming about.
A Fish Tale is available in my Etsy shop. Please see the sidebar for the Etsy link.
Â On the Rocks: A Fish Tale- Monday, July 25, 2011