09-22-2006, 02:10 AM
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I actually have experience with salt. I've used it for about a year or so. My appeared to be fine with the salt. None showed any type of stress, even for particularly "salt sensitive" fish such as clown loaches, gold nugget pleco and at the time, I also had neon tetras and dwarf gouramis, which are also salt sensitive. I originally added the salt to treat one of my clown loach, which showed signs of ich. After doing research, I found that adding salt was the best solution, along with high temps. Ich cannot take the osmotic pressure of the change in salinity levels, but fish can. After treatment of the ich, I kept with the salt for about a year. The reason was I read all the benefits with adding salt. None of my fish showed any types of stress, nor did I have any problems.
I would have to assume that some fish die from salt, from the way the salt is added to the tank. I am sure that most people just pour the salt crystals directly in the tank. With such a high concentration in a small area, any fish, more like bottom dwellers, that come close or in contact, could suffer some kind of injury.
The best way to add salt is to put the salt crystals in a cup and then add water and allow the salt to dissolve thoroughly. Once fully dissolved, pour the solution in your tank slowly over a long period of time. What I did was I cut some thin narrow slits in the bottom of a disposable drinking cup. I then tied 3 pieces of string to the top lip of the cup, so it can be hung. I put the salt crystals in the cup and slowly lowered the cup into the tank, until the top lip of the cup is almost the same line as the surface of the water in the tank. Then hang the cup, preferably close to the output of the filter.
As I mentioned, I found no problems with adding salt in the tank. In fact, I was actually dosing the wrong amount of salt in my 55 gallon tank. During a water change, I would probably remove about 5-10 gallons of water. Instead of adding salt equivalent to the amount of water I added back (5-10 gallons), I would add salt equivalent to the full tank, which was 55 gallons. I did this every week for about a year. As I mentioned, none of my fish, showed any type of stress nor did I have any problems with any of my fish.
I only stopped dosing salt, due to the fact that it was getting expensive continuously buying salt. I also read some kind of info on the net regarding that the salt could be harmful. But as I said, I had the tank with salt for about a year. Now that I do not use salt, my fish still appear to be fine. I still keep aquarium salt and Epsom salt, for medicinal purposes.
So if you want to use salt, make sure you dissolve it first, before pouring it into your tank.