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Geoffrey 04-23-2012 12:52 PM

Adding new fish during ich treatment?
I am currently treating my partially stocked Peacock tank for ich. Heat and salt.

Later today I am going to go check out a new store to see if there are any tanks on sale etc. If I end up seeing any peacock males in the store I will be very tempted to buy them up.

Question via topic: Would adding new fish during the last half of a heat/salt treatment be bad? Currently 84F 1 Tbsp / 10 gal
I'm thinking of letting the temp drop back down to normal by a degree or two per day anyway and not adding new salt with water changes.

If I end up with a cheap new tank I could just quarantine the new fish anyway. Or would adding during treatment eliminate the need for quarantine?


Geomancer 04-23-2012 01:04 PM

I wouldn't, salt is very hard on all freshwater fish and I wouldn't use it with Ich anyways, there are better medications out there that are not so harmful.

These fish aren't going extinct, there will be more in the future ;)

Ich is only one of many possible problems from new fish, quarantine would still be a good idea.

Byron 04-23-2012 01:13 PM

Agree. Never add new fish to a tank that is under any form of treatment for disease of health issues. The additional stress this will place on the new fish is almost certain to cause more problems and would likely reinfect the tank with ich.

And I agree on not using salt; read why here:

And if you want to know more about stress causing ich, read this article:


redchigh 04-23-2012 01:19 PM

In a hard-water tank, salt shouldn't cause any health problems...

However, if you're using a commercial buffering product, you might want to check if it already contains salt. If so, you might get the levels too high for even cichlids.

I do agree, don't add new fish to a tank being treated. I'd wait at least two weeks after the ich is apparently cured before beginning to remove the salt, and when the salt is removed through water changes you can consider adding a new fish.

Geoffrey 04-23-2012 01:42 PM

I did quite a bit of reading and most of the main articles suggest heat/salt for non serious ich treatments on cichlids. My well water is perfect for African cichlids so I do not need to add any sort of chemicals.

They are responding well to the current treatment. The healthy fish are still healthy and the sick fish are getting better.

Yes salt is a bit hard on freshwater fish. Thats why it is used to build up their slime coat for short periods of time, its also been thought that salty conditions will kill ich in one of its life stages. The article posted mentions over and over that salt is bad over long periods of time. Im sure there are down sides to using chemical medications also.

Thanks for all the input! I will resist the urge to get new fish for a while. Unless I end up with a new quarantine tank.
I rarely find male peacock cichlids in stores, but I suppose I could ask them to order me some, if its cheaper than mail-ordering myself.

Byron 04-23-2012 05:35 PM

On this issue of salt, I do not agree that it is safe in hard water nor especially for cichlids. Salt will cause the problem commonly known as Malawi Bloat in cichlids. That does not sound good to me. A safer treatment makes more sense.

Yes, salt will kill ich, but use must be confined to salt-tolerant fish. And there are safer treatments that will not negaqtively affect the physiological homeostasis as much. Then there is stress, minimizing the stress and some will do this better than salt.

As for the slime coat, the fish secretes more mucus in an attempt to protect itself from salt. Were it not confined to the aquarium, it would swim well away; but being trapped inside the glass box it can't, so it fights back and wastes its energy. Given what the salt at that strength is doing to the fish internally, it is not wise.

Tazman 04-23-2012 06:02 PM

Salt with cichlids is generally not a good idea as with cichlids being active swimmers constantly if actually makes them tired quick..which can lead to other problems.

I think I answered you in another thread but remind me again what exactly you have stock wise, care must be taken when setting up a peacock tank and there are certain ways to do it that work better than others.

Agree with what everyone else has said about not getting the fish until at least 3-4 weeks after you finish the treatment, this will allow the tank to settle down again after treatment has ended, and to make sure the ich is totally gone.

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