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General Freshwater Discussion For all topics relating to freshwater fish to the in's and out's of maintaining a freshwater tank.

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Old 01-08-2017, 05:56 PM   #1
mitko1994
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Default How should I handle this?

Hello and Happy New Year to everyone! As most of you probably did, I went out on boxing day and bought a few new fish from Big Als. As usual, whenever I get fish there, they always get sick after and bring more headache rather than joy. Rather than the usual ick outbreak that I easily take care of, this time I've been hit by a series of deaths due to what appears to be different disease. I lost a red irian rainbow to what appeared to be an internal disease. There was something white sticking out from the anus and the fish refused to eat. After 2-3 days its belly looked like it had swallowed something round and within a few days it died. When I took it out of the tank, it had something like a wound on the side, but that might have been due to other fish picking on it when they sensed it wasn't well. To be honest, I didn't apply any meds, because I read online that internal infections are hard to treat from the outside and the best thing to do is feed garlic/medication to the fish, but if it refuses to eat, there is little you can do. Moving on, the next fish that died was a rummynose. It was the smallest of the 3 I purchased. When I brought it home it looked to have a slightly bent back and maybe had a sunken belly but I thought that might have been due it being underfed. The fish didn't really act like it was sick. It settled nicely and was eating well and all of sudden it died yesterday. When I was doing my scheduled tank maintenance today, I noticed that one of the other 2 rummynose tetras had a white mouth. It's hard to tell if it's discoloration or growth but it's there. It looks very similar to the lip damage rainbows get when handled inside the nets. I'm scared it might be columnaris and if I'm not mistaken that's highly contagious. I don't think I have any suitable meds for this disease( I have a bit of kanaplex and mardel quick cure) so I'm not treating with anything to avoid further stressing the fish. I also don't have a QT tank. The most I can do is separate that fish in a cooking pot but that doesn't guarantee that other fish wont get it. I read that salt might be helpful but I'm not sure how the different species will respond to it( I have scaleless fish). Currently no other fish are showing signs of the illness nor were any fish sick prior to introducing the new fish. Another thing that I have been doing differently over the festive period was feeding dried tubifex once/week rather than once/ 2 weeks, if that could've had any impact. I lowered the temperature to 24-25C because I read online that columnaris doesn't live in water temp of <25C. What's your suggestion on how to approach this?

Thanks

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Old 01-08-2017, 09:47 PM   #2
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Ok, I just spent some more time watching the fish and shot a quick video. I noticed that one of turquoise rainbows I purchased is also acting weird. No visible signs of a problem but it's just sitting around and is not interested in food. I also tried to capture the rummynose but I think it was too quick for me. Another thing you can see is one of my smaller bosemani swimming around with a big belly. Again it looks heatly but I'm wondering if that could dropsy(although I hope it just ate too much). Any input would help. Here is the video

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Old 01-09-2017, 07:23 AM   #3
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Diagnosing any fish disease is next to impossible expect for the obvious Ich or external bacterial infections including fin rot.

If you don't have live plants I would just add aquarium salt at 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons of water and increase your temp back to normal tropical temps. Do lots of water changes to ensure top quality water and make sure your filter is clean.

If the fish are strong they'll recover on their own and if not its because they were already sick or stressed.
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Old 01-09-2017, 02:37 PM   #4
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^ +1

Not easy to diagnose, but a couple years back, I had a Camallanus outbreak after introducing a group of Denisonii Barbs into an existing group from Big Als. New fish were smaller so it was easily to distinguish new from old - the newly introduced fish developed the white anal 'tube'? and I even noticed worms sticking out on some occasions (red worms). The worms took out the entire population of Denisoniis in the tank within a matter of a couple weeks - these are very fatal infections normally resulting in death for the fish unless treated with medications (difficult when the fish won't eat - side effect of the worms). I had no plants in the tank and used salt, but it didn't seem to do much.

Purchasing from Big Als can be a big gamble sometimes, I almost never add new livestock to an existing tank unless absolutely necessary.

I would take the advice above and start adding salt to your tank at recommend doses and changing your water more frequently. Hopefully it's not Columnaris or Camallanus and that you win this battle. Good luck.

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Old 01-09-2017, 02:42 PM   #5
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Oops, sorry, I meant Camallanus worms, Columnarus is equally terrible, but the Denisoniis contracted Camallanus worms that resulted in the white 'tube' and red worms.
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Old 01-09-2017, 06:16 PM   #6
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Thanks for your replies. I had a bit of kanaplex laying around so I added that to the tank since Columnaris is a bacteria. I don't know if I will be able to make it to a pet store this week but I might have enough time on Wednesday to do a bit of filter maintenance and perhaps another 25% water change. I'm a bit hesitant about adding salt to the tank as I have a few plants as you can see in the video. I could, however, try and isolate the sick fish and give it a salt bath(is iodized salt OK? I read a lot of different opinions on this). If I get a chance to go to the store, what meds would you suggest PimaFix, Melafix, Furan-2? Agh... I honestly regret getting these fish. As nice as they are they are causing me big headaches but it's Big Al's to blame no the fish themselves. I miss pj pets - they had the best and cheapest fish. All the fish I've purchased from them have always been healthy
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Old 01-11-2017, 05:49 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitko1994 View Post
Thanks for your replies. I had a bit of kanaplex laying around so I added that to the tank since Columnaris is a bacteria. I don't know if I will be able to make it to a pet store this week but I might have enough time on Wednesday to do a bit of filter maintenance and perhaps another 25% water change. I'm a bit hesitant about adding salt to the tank as I have a few plants as you can see in the video. I could, however, try and isolate the sick fish and give it a salt bath(is iodized salt OK? I read a lot of different opinions on this). If I get a chance to go to the store, what meds would you suggest PimaFix, Melafix, Furan-2? Agh... I honestly regret getting these fish. As nice as they are they are causing me big headaches but it's Big Al's to blame no the fish themselves. I miss pj pets - they had the best and cheapest fish. All the fish I've purchased from them have always been healthy
Agreed. PJ's was awesome. Never got fish at PetsMart... but I'm assuming its the same as Al's if not worse.
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Old 01-11-2017, 08:38 PM   #8
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Depends the pj's the one in Milton was awful
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Old 01-11-2017, 09:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitko1994 View Post
Thanks for your replies. I had a bit of kanaplex laying around so I added that to the tank since Columnaris is a bacteria. I don't know if I will be able to make it to a pet store this week but I might have enough time on Wednesday to do a bit of filter maintenance and perhaps another 25% water change. I'm a bit hesitant about adding salt to the tank as I have a few plants as you can see in the video. I could, however, try and isolate the sick fish and give it a salt bath(is iodized salt OK? I read a lot of different opinions on this). If I get a chance to go to the store, what meds would you suggest PimaFix, Melafix, Furan-2? Agh... I honestly regret getting these fish. As nice as they are they are causing me big headaches but it's Big Al's to blame no the fish themselves. I miss pj pets - they had the best and cheapest fish. All the fish I've purchased from them have always been healthy
Iodized salt is not good for aquarium use. A salt bath or dip isn't going to help your fish.

If I were you I'd stop using meds altogether before you kill off the good bacteria in your filter and end up with an even bigger problem.
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Old 01-13-2017, 07:17 PM   #10
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Update: no deaths since - the rainbow still not eating well. The rummynose still has that white spot on its nose, but it could be net damage as it hasn't grown,hasn't spread to other fish, and is not impeding its food intake. I did 2, 50% WC since. One was combined with filter maintenance for my main canister. I didn't dose any meds.

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