A friend with a very sick/injured parrot fish, what to do?
I am posting this for my friend who does not have net access.
1. Size of aquarium (# of gallons)
CUSTOM MADE 60 GALLON TALL
2. Is your aquarium setup freshwater or brackish water?
3. How long the aquarium has been set up?
2 YEAR +
4. What fish and how many are in the aquarium (species are important to know)
2 PARROT FISH (3 INCHES EACH), 1 SAILFIN PLECO (4 INCHES), A FEW RAMSHORD SNAILS
5. Are there live plants in the aquarium?
YES, JAVA MOSS, JAVA FERN, AND AMAZON SWORDS
6. What temperature is the tank water currently?
RANGES BETWEEN 74-78
7. What make/model filter are you using?
CANISTER FILTER, NOT SURE THE BRAND
8. Are you using a CO2 unit?
DIY WITH YEAST AND GLASS DIFFUSER
9. Does your aquarium receive natural sunlight at any given part of the day?
10. When did you perform your last water exchange, and how much water was changed?
25% YESTERDAY (6/9)
11. How often do you perform water changes?
ONCE A MONTH
12. How often and what foods do you feed your fish?
TWICE DAILY, TROPICAL FLAKES, AND OCCASIONAL ALGAE WAFERS FOR THE PLECO
13. What type of lighting are you using and how long is it kept on?
i FOR GOT TO ASK, BUT IT IS A OVERHEAD LIGHT FOR PLANTS
14. What specific concerns bring you here at this time?
PARROT FISH BECAME INSIDE OF ROCK FORMATION IN TANK. WE AREN'T SURE HOW LONG HE WAS STUCK MY FRIEND COULD NOT FIND HIM WHEN SHE GOT HOME FROM WORK AND THEN LATER DISCOVERED HIM STUCK AFTER PULLING ALL OF THE DECORATIONS FROM THE TANK. HIS SCALES ARE RUBBED OFF ON THE SIDES WHERE HE WAS STUCK, AND A COTTONY AREA COVERS THESE AREA NOW. tHE ACCIDENT HAPPENED TWO DAYS AGO. PIC BELOW
15. What are your water parameters? Test your pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate.
16. What test kit are you using and is it liquid or test strips?
17. When was the last time you bought a fish and how did they behave while in the pet store tank?
THE PARROT FISH WERE PURCHASED 4 MONTHS AGO, HAVE BEEN FINE
I PUT HIM IN HERE TO PHOTOGRAPH HIM. MY FRIEND SAID HE IS THE MORE ACTIVE OF THE TWO USUALLY BUT HAS BEEN SWIMMING SLOWLY ONLY AND HAS A HARD TIME RIGHTING HIMSELF IF HE GETS CAUGHT IN THE BUBBLE CURRENT. ANY HELP WOULD BE APPRECIATED. SHE HAS ONLY ADDED A LITTLE MELAFIX AT THIS TIME. THANKS IN ADVANCE.
Are they rubbed off on both sides? I never really heard of a fish getting stuck in something. I'm sure he's stressed from the situation which would cause him to be sluggish. How is he eating? I wonder if he maybe wasn't stuck but just went there to hide from someone picking in him.
Yes I'm sure he was stuck. I went over and helped her pull him out. He was wedged in tightly, we had to carefully oush him forward then out. The scales on both sides are worn away and he is eating but will not come up for it. she says he will he what falls.
Unfortunately, I don't have much knowledge about a situation like this. It definitely is possible for a fish to get wedged places though.
I do fear that this may have injured his swim bladder, as you said he has trouble righting himself. That's my only input in the diagnosis, hopefully someone else can provide more insight.
Perhaps you should PM bettababy on this case...she's very good about what to use for treatments and what's not safe
Thank you I will. She has put him in a 10 gallon hospital tank and added some melafix. I will PM betta baby. He is looking pretty awful.
I read through the thread and took a look at the photo. Unfortunately, I don't think melafix is going to be potent enough to help in this situation, and while it may have some effect on that secondary fungal infection, it's not going to do much of anything in preventing a secondary bacterial infection.
For this situation, I'm going to prescribe the same thing I would for a betta... Methylene blue and fungus eliminator. If fungus eliminator isn't available, look for jungle's other product "fungus clear".
Fungus eliminator is going to be the better jungle product to use because of the salt content in it, but I understand many people have been having trouble finding it. I have sent out a letter to jungle in hopes of making that product more available to our members here at FF, but thus far I have had no response from them. Dose both medications at same time, follow all instructions on the containers. Treatment should last 8 days, so 2 doses of the fungus eliminator total. For the methylene blue you'll need to check the packaging for length of treatment, as the bottle doesn't have that info listed on it and I forget at the moment. I do know the methylene blue is dosed 1 drop per gallon. Fungus eliminator should have a 25% water change between the 2 doses. Be sure to remove all carbon during medication periods.
As was mentioned already, it is possible that the swim bladder was injured, and for that, unfortunately there isn't anything that can be done, but that is another reason I suggest the fungus eliminator instead of fungus clear if you can find it... the salt content in the fungus eliminator can help tremendously well with minor injuries to a swim bladder. Please do not dose aquarium salt into this tank, even if using just fungus clear. The amount of salt in fungus eliminator is something I have not yet been able to reproduce to get the same effective results using fungus clear. Not enough salt won't have any effect at all, and too much can be lethal. If forced to use fungus clear, try to feed the fish a few epsom salts instead. 3 - 5 good size pieces of epsom salt should be plenty to do the trick with the swim bladder unless permanent damage has already taken place.
I would also suggest raising that water temp to 82 in the qt tank, and getting a better food source in that fish's diet.
Flake food was not designed to sustain something like parrot fish long term. There isn't enough of the right ingredients in it to keep a cichlid such as a parrot healthy. There are a number of good cichlid pellets on the market, one of the best is Hikari Cichlid pellets. They come in different sizes depending on the size of the fish. I would also suggest trying something like frozen forumal 1, too. (please be sure its thawed in tank water for at least 15 min before offering to the fish... it needs to be thawed all the way through and not cold to the touch)
Outside of that treatment for the injured fish, water changes should be done weekly, even if there are very few small fish in a larger tank. As those fish go through growth spurts there is going to be significant fluctuation in water params. I am hoping that the way those params read is that the nitrate is at 20 and nitrite is at 0. Even with a nitrate level of 20, for what is in that tank, I find that to be quite high and unhealthy for those fish. That will contribute greatly to secondary infections such as you're now seeing.
I'm also going to suggest the addition of a power head to this main tank. A canister filter, regardless of it's size, is not going to circulate the water enough to keep things healthy in this kind of set up. Lack of circulation will contribute to lack of oxygen, and lack of distribution of the tank water, which creates a lack of biological filtration. The only way that water is going to be filtered is to run through the filter... in a 60 gallon tank, that is going to require something to help circulate it for a canister to do it's job properly.
The only other thing I can find to add is to warn your friend that 60 gallons is only a temporary size tank for 2 parrot fishes & a pleco. Within the first year those fish should grow enough to need at least 90 gallons, and long term, those fish should have at least 125 gallons due to their size and environmental requirements. If the first jump is into the size tank that is needed for long term, then it saves a lot of money on that tank "in between" growth spurts.
Good luck to your friend and her fish, let me know if there's anything more I can do to help.
Thank you Dawn. I am going to print this out for her. She is the type of person who really heeds the advice of those who know what they are talking about, so I know she will do everything she can to follow your instructions.
As for the powerhead she MAY have one on there. The night she had the fish problem we did the water testing and such, but I forgot to look closely at her system.
Yes and I most def reversed the ni/na readings. :oops:
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