Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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-   -   Raphael Catfish Fin rot or stress? (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/catfish/raphael-catfish-fin-rot-stress-38443/)

jackjak 03-02-2010 04:34 PM

Raphael Catfish Fin rot or stress?
 
Hello all, first post in the forum so Hello everyone (:


Wanted to ask a question about my catfish, came home today to find he was out and about swimming around the tank which is odd for him. Usually he comes out around 2AM, not usually before.

After looking closer, i saw that his scales were coming off. Kinda looked like he was shedding some of them. His eyes diddnt look like they were glazed over but they deffinately had some sort of loose scales around his face and some of his body.

His fins had a red coloration at the base where they join his body and is left fin has a hole in it. The right fin tissue has come completely detached from the main fin.

Is this fin rot? or has he been bullied and the loose scales developed from stress?

Ive never seen him like this and he looks like he is stressed out.

Did a water check.
PH is slightly alkali.
Ammonia is spot on.
Nitrate is between 140 and 80. I know this is high but in the booklet it says that its more to do with algae growth.
Nitrite is spot on.

Any ideas?
Cheers

bettababy 03-03-2010 02:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jackjak (Post 336369)
Hello all, first post in the forum so Hello everyone (:

Hi and welcome to FF!


Wanted to ask a question about my catfish, came home today to find he was out and about swimming around the tank which is odd for him. Usually he comes out around 2AM, not usually before.

After looking closer, i saw that his scales were coming off. Kinda looked like he was shedding some of them. His eyes diddnt look like they were glazed over but they deffinately had some sort of loose scales around his face and some of his body.

His fins had a red coloration at the base where they join his body and is left fin has a hole in it. The right fin tissue has come completely detached from the main fin.

Can you post any clear photos of the fish? The clearer and closer, the better for diagnosis.

Is this fin rot? or has he been bullied and the loose scales developed from stress?

Can you offer more details about the tank please?
How big is the tank?
What other fish are in the tank? (what species and how many of each?)
How long has the tank been set up?
How often do you perform water changes? How much water each time?
What is the water temp?
What type of substrate in the tank? (gravel or sand?)

The more info you can provide the faster and easier for me to diagnose the actual problem and offer a treatment plan for you.

Do you have a quarantine tank?

Ive never seen him like this and he looks like he is stressed out.

Did a water check.
PH is slightly alkali.
Ammonia is spot on.
Nitrate is between 140 and 80. I know this is high but in the booklet it says that its more to do with algae growth.
Nitrite is spot on.
By "spot on" I am assuming you mean 0 for both ammonia and nitrite? pH I will need an exact number reading to be of any help here...
Yes, that nitrate level is very high, and should be considered highly toxic at those levels. While high nitrate does affect algae growth in many situations, the concern is more for the fish. Nitrate over 20 - 40 is toxic to the fish, especially over any length of time. How often do you perform gravel vacs in the tank and change carbon in the filter?

Honestly, there is not going to be a safe way to medicate this fish in the current conditions. A nitrate level at that extreme can cause the medications to have an adverse effect. If you don't currently have a quarantine tank, this is the time to get one.

Mean time, that nitrate level needs to be cleared up as quickly as possible. PuraPad is a great filter media to do this safely, without changing out excessive amounts of water, which would also endanger the fish. You can buy it direct from Magnavore here: http://www.marinedepot.com/PURA_Filt...MN3311-vi.html

I would strongly suggest getting a piece of PuraPad into your filter as soon as possible, changing it after 10 - 12 days and putting in a fresh piece. The pad will safely absorb the excess nitrate, any nitrite or ammonia, and any phosphate that may be present in the tank, without removing "the good stuff" that needs to be in the water for the fish's overall health.

Any ideas?
Cheers

Once I have answers to the questions I've asked I can begin to diagnose the actual problem and offer you a safe treatment plan.

jackjak 03-03-2010 05:01 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by bettababy (Post 337044)
Once I have answers to the questions I've asked I can begin to diagnose the actual problem and offer you a safe treatment plan.

Unfortionately, he died last night. Poor little guy :(

Its a 60 litre tank
I have:
2 Black Kuhli Loaches
2 Pretty tetras (one of which has the same disease but is coping better)
1 Small Plec
1 Upside down catfish
2 Butterfly fish

Tank has been set up since December, Used a few litres of water from my old 30 litre tank to get it going, the rest was treated with anti chlorine treatment.

I have recently done 20% every week. Today i was told where its a new tank, i should be doing this every 3 days. So thats what i'll do from now on.

Water was 24 deg.C Upped it to 26deg.C

I have gravel In the tank (small spherical, 2-3mm diameter)

I dont have a quarentine tank, and only have one fish left with the disease.

Ammonia and nitrite levers are low. Sorry, should have used something more descriptive than "spot on"

Did a water change today with some new, more expensive water treatment, it treats ammonia, nitrite and nitrate which should bring the high nitrate level down.

Pump is near enough new so the carbon is good and i gravel vac when i water change.

I have started a 7 day Ichicide treatment course. I was told to do a 20% water change before i started with the Ichicide which i have done. I ised 10ml of the treatment for the 60 liters. The water has become clear so im guessing it has mixed properly.

Thanks for your help, i hope this is enough details for you. Shame i didn't catch the infection before i could have saved him.

Thanks again
jackjak

bettababy 03-03-2010 06:07 PM

60 liters = almost 16 gallons . That sounds like quite a heavy population for that size of tank.

When it comes to water parameters and asking for help, we really need exact numbers to be able to offer you any help. Terms like "spot on" or "very low" really tell us nothing useful.

You mention the pump is "near enough new" but that also doesn't tell me anything useful. What does that mean? 1 month old, 3 months old, etc? Carbon in the filter should be changed every 30 days, not sure if that is something you have been doing or not. If the tank has been running since December, then the carbon should be ready for its 3rd change now.

You mention using an "ichicide"? What is that? Are you referring to medication to treat ich? There are many medications that will treat ich, but not all safe for all species of fish, especially kuhli loaches and upside down catfish. I saw nothing in your posts to indicate a problem with ich... did I miss something?

I honestly would not advise adding any type of medication to water with nitrate readings of 80+, thats not safe. Also, you have made no mention of what the pH is in the tank? Or how much water you change each time when doing water changes? Without knowing those exact numbers (for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH) there is no way to know how safe it is to add medications of any kind to this tank. To do so is taking a huge risk and can cause more harm than good.

Do you own test kits for the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH? If you don't, I would strongly urge you to get them as soon as possible. API offers a reasonably priced master kit for freshwater that includes all of the tests I have mentioned, and API is in the top 3 for accuracy. If you are relying on a pet store to test your water, please ask them to write down the kind of test kit they used and exact numbers for results. If the results are coming from test strips, they are useless. Test strips are very inaccurate. Water testing should be done using liquid test kits or digital meters for accuracy.

It is quite possible that the illness problems are due to the water quality in your tank, so without first getting that under control, illness is likely to continue to spread through your tank, and/or worsen.

In sorting through your species of fish, can you post photos of the tetras so we can get a positive ID on them? Not all tetras have the same requirements as others, nor do they all share the same medication sensitivities. As for the butterfly fish... are you referring to African butterfly fish? Butterfly goodieds? Again, if you are unsure, photos of the fish will allow us here on the forum to positively ID the fish. Its impossible to know if you are properly caring for any animal if you don't first know what it is... and that applies to anyone who may offer you help, without knowing what species, we are clueless.

In order to be of more help to you I really need to know those exact water params and the specific species of fish in your tank.

From what I can see up to this point, your tank appears to be overstocked with animals and/or over fed. It also sounds like the sick fish are suffering from an advanced bacterial infection, which may or may not include a fungal infection. This could easily have come from poor water quality and should be dealt with as soon as possible to avoid the other fish becoming infected. If you can list the ingredients of the "ichicide" that you are using, I can better tell you if this is a proper medication to deal with your problem and if it is safe for the fish in your tank (once I know for sure what fish are all in there). If this is an ich medication and you are using it to treat a bacterial infection, its either going to be ineffective or cause more harm.

Sorry I can't help you further at this point... but there just is not enough information to do so. When asking for help with any aquarium problem, details and exact answers are needed.

jackjak 03-04-2010 11:51 AM

Ok, Nitrite level is 0.0ppm
pH level is between 7.4 and 7.8
Ammonia is 0.0
These figures are only as good as my matching to the swatches in the kit.

I had no idea what so ever that carbon filters needed changing monthly I shall buy some refils this weekend.

I was advided to use Ichcide by my local fish stockis after explaining my fish's symptoms.

Since using it last night, my pretty tetra has cleared up alot and is generally looking healthier.

Again, the testing kit is all i had and the time I will look into buying a new one.

They are african butterfly fish: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2717/...bd38b6e4_b.jpg
These are the black Khuli Loaches: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4048/...e9cce236_b.jpg
This is the infected tetra: http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4053/...11e6af52_b.jpg
I cant get a photo of the plec or the upside down catfish as they are hiding.

Im going to sound like a complete idiot but i also have a zebra Danio and a loach i dont know the name of
http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4011/...89cd5e2d_b.jpg

The ichcide includes 42mg/100ml of Malachite green
and 238mg/100ml Formaldehyde

I know i sound like a stupid beginner here but already Ive learnt a lot.

Thanks again
jackjak

iamntbatman 03-05-2010 03:58 AM

That last fish looks like a Chinese algae eater. Your tetra also looks like it has suffered some damage to its fins. Have you seen the algae eater attack any of your other fish? They can be quite aggressive and this behavior can worsen as they age. I think it's possible your catfish was chewed on by this CAE (the tetra's fin damage might also be a result of aggression).

Zero ammonia and nitrite in your water sound good and don't point toward a glaring water quality issue though there's still the possibility of illness being a factor.


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