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The dreaded Crypto on new CB Angel

This is a discussion on The dreaded Crypto on new CB Angel within the Saltwater Fish Diseases forums, part of the Saltwater Fish and Coral Reef Tanks category; --> Here is how I personnaly responded to this situation with my Coral Beauty Angel this year: I think you made a mistake by ...

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The dreaded Crypto on new CB Angel
Old 11-21-2008, 06:07 AM   #11
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Here is how I personnaly responded to this situation with my Coral Beauty Angel this year:

I think you made a mistake by removing the Coral Beauty. Ich is rarely fought successfully with medication. Your role is to reduce stress and provide an environment which allows your fish to fight off the infection. This may include medicine, yes, but should also focus on diet and stress elimination.

Your main aquarium has ich now, and you must take care to prevent it from infecting future fish. At absolute minimum you need to wait 90 days prior to adding another fish to the main aquarium.

Hyposalinity treatments in the 1.018 range circulate across the rumor mills of the internet, but studies as recent as 2008 have provided no evidence of that this has any impact on Crypto. Successful studies have shown 1.012 to be the ideal level, and that the most effective treatment provides NO acclimation to the lower levels. Fish are left at 1.012 for 3 weeks and then the salinity is slowly raised back to the display level. This is intended to be a quarantine procedure. Like I said, at this point the CB is the least of your concerns. The display tank is your concern.

If you follow the current course of action... It is highly likely that you will have continued ich breakouts over the next 6 months to a year and eventually leave the marine hobby.

There has been a TON of scientific information introduced into the aquarium hobby in 2008 on this topic. VERY LITTLE of it is even mentioned online. You can go to your local library and look at past issues of Aquarium Fish Magazine, Aquarium Fish International, and FAMA for most recent information. You will find this information to be 100% negative, showing that almost every generally accepted treatment for Ich is not effective.

Which is why I posted the link above as a suggestion for expanding your understanding of treatment options.
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Old 11-21-2008, 11:22 PM   #12

Thank you for the sound advice... I've been posting on internet forums for years. Most of the time on subjects I knew a lot more about than marine ecosystems though. Your post is a good example of a "trustworthy" post. You gave an opinion (without giving "urgent" instructions and inducing a state of panic on my part), and you stated some supporting evidence.

I actually read your post a month or so ago, but maybe I didn't feel confident enough as a newcomer to just let things take their course? I suppose those new to the hobby think similarly. For example with many new things, noobs feel they need to be right on top of everything because if conditions worsen they won't know what to do (i.e. nip it in the bud!). In short we tend to overcompensate at first so things don't get out of hand... I suppose it's in our nature?

Whether I leave the marine hobby or not? Probably not... I've maintained a fresh water system in some form for over 16 years, since I was in 5th grade. I've bred Cichlids, had aggressive species tanks, and driftwood community tanks. And true to the marine hobby, things usually turn out the best when I did nothing at all... I really began to feel good about my ability to be a successful aquarist when my fish began dying of natural causes (specifically old age!!). When my tank was down to just a few specimens (all in excess of 4 years old-with minimal care other than water changes, rinsing a filter pad, and feeding) I decided to move them to another tank and enter the marine hobby.

Okay, back to the original topic... While I'm starting to agree with you that removing the CB angel might not have been the greatest idea It's already done, and adding it back to the display tank would probably be a bad idea at this point switching it's surroundings yet again... plus I'd have to catch the little M-Effer again...

Tomorrow I will goto the library (one of my fav. places to do research) and see what I can find as far as aquarium mags go... In the meantime I am treating with Cupramine (.5mg/L) by seachem at the suggestion of a trustworthy source at my LFS. Now... What recommendations do you have at this time? I'm not really sure that performing a water change to dramatically lower the S.G. would be beneficial, correct? Also, the CB doesn't seem to be eating much. He didn't eat much in the display (partially because the clowns ate it all before any could sink to him!), and I have rotated between frozen mysis, spectrum pellets, and toasted nori (small squares rubber banded to a rock). He hasn't really showed much interest in anything. Although I did see some poo tonight in the tank.

As for the display tank, the only other fish (2 percula clowns) seem to be vibrantly colored and eating rather well. Tonight I did notice some twitching though... He just kind of spasmed for a quick second, almost like if you were to simultaneously contract all of your muscles. Now I haven't read that this is a symptom of anything yet... They aren't showing any other odd behaviors. I do have 1 peppermint shrimp in the tank (29 gal) and I have been tossing around the idea of adding another peppermint, or perhaps a cleaner shrimp (though SO much more expensive I'm not sure I want to... $8 for the peppermint, $30 for the cleaner). I treated the tank with 1 dose of metronidazole, which I have read is a fairly mild treatment, reef-safe, and will kill the parasites in their free swimming stages. Since then I have done 1 water change, but I have not re-dosed.

I'll keep you all updated... Thanks again for the advice.

Last edited by ajmckay; 11-21-2008 at 11:25 PM..
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Old 11-22-2008, 12:30 AM   #13
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I like your choice in copper. It is a relatively safe form and overall less stressful for the fish. Be very careful to test for the correct dose, as Centropyge angels are copper sensitive.

I would personally begin feeding garlic immediately. What could you possibly have to loose? It is an appetite stimulant and a correlation has been shown between garlic and ich prevention.

Finally, if it does not clear up within a few days, or if it gets worse, I would lower the salinity to 1.013. I do not have personal experience with this level, but i would personally do so anyhow. I can't recall if it was Goemans or Borneman who made this suggestion, but either way, its good for me.

Finally, i am a huge believer in UV sterilizers and would suggest investing in one immediately for your display tank. Yes there are cons. Lots of them and plenty of people to tell you not to use one. But i believe the average hobbyist would benefit greatly from a more sterile environment. I personally use one and believe I can tell a difference in the health of the livestock.
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Old 11-22-2008, 11:04 PM   #14
Thanks for the advice.

Okay, now for a recap. I got the fish Saturday. On Monday is when the first signs of trouble crept up on me. On Wednesday the CB angel was in quarantine. On Thursday I noticed the milky patches behind the gills...

Well today I still have a few white dots (though they have decreased 1 or 2 each day now). I also still have that white patch, and now I've noticed something around it's eye on one side. Last night I noticed it, but I thought it was probably just a reflection. I took a video of the fish and here is a link to it:

MVI_0025.flv - Video - Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Sorry if you can't really tell much from the video, but you'll have to look closely to the patches behind the gills, and also at the end you can distinctly see the white line above his eye on one side only. Now obviously a digicam doesn't have the resolution of a human eye, so I will also try to describe the symptoms:

First off, it looks normal from the front... In other words one eye doesn't look bigger than the other, or more popped out or anything. The white line above the eye doesn't look like a fungus, but rather a cut or something... it doesn't have ragged edges or anything. Maybe he just nicked it on something (although I'm not sure what because I only have some PVC in there w/no apparent sharp edges)?

As for the display tank, everything seems to be going fine. Today I added an emerald crab (I'm starting to get a few chunks of bubble algae and from what I've read they're the only things that eat it...) I'm thinking about skipping this weeks 20% water change though just to possibly reduce stress. I'm also soaking my pellet foods in garlic water for a few minutes prior to feeding.
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Old 11-24-2008, 08:37 PM   #15
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I think you need to sit tight and continue to observe. I can't diagnose much from the video, although it is a good look at the eye. I don't see Crypto in this shot, but that doesn't mean it isn't there.
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Old 11-24-2008, 10:19 PM   #16
Thanks pasfur for the follow up... That's pretty much what I've been doing. I've been soaking pellet food in garlic water as well for an appetite stimulant. Right now there are no white spots, however tonight I was scanning the bottom and I think I might have seen a few scales on the bottom. I'm not 100% sure, but they were small, thin, transparent discs with a semi iridescent sheen... I saw about 4 I think. Copper is at .5mg/L. No water changes yet.
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Old 11-25-2008, 07:17 PM   #17
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Resist any urge to increase copper dose. Centropyge's are copper sensitive, although the Coral Beauty tends to do ok. (Definitely do not repeat this procedure with a BiColor or Lemon Peel, nor should anyone following this thread use a FW dip on either of these 2 common dwarf species.)

It is interesting you mention the possibilities of lost scales. Keep the updates coming.
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Old 12-07-2008, 01:18 AM   #18
Okay, time for an update to this post...

The CB angel is still alive... And actually doing quite well for the moment. Since my last post I have not seen any white specks at all. Current specs on the quarantine tank are: SG 1.014, Temp 83, PH 8.3, cupramine level .4mg/L.

Since my last post, however, I have also become concerned about some of his other symptoms. While the "cut" above his eye seems to be healing (at least it's not white anymore, but turning purple), he still has a tendency to want to scratch against things; and his appetite has been horrible. He absolutely does not eat while I am observing him, but I have seen him peck at some pellet food and spit it out. I've also fed him mysis shrimp, culpera (sp?) algae, toasted nori, and a few different types of sponges. I know he's eaten some of the sponges, and maybe nibbled at the algae a little as well. I've also gotten a few small bits of live rock for the Qt tank that he might/might not be grazing on.

Since he was eating little and scratching I asked a few of the more knowledgeable staff at my LFS and they supposed that he might have some other parasite infestation such as flatworms. I ended up taking some water from one of their cichlid tanks with a coral substrate and did an 8 minute freshwater dip. Amazingly enough the fish looked to suffer little compared to what I've read about and/or seen. He did not lay on his side and his breathing increased, but not a lot. Now for the amazing part... I could only observe from the top, but within a few minutes I began to see things laying on the bottom of the previously empty container! After 8 minutes I counted 9 obvious "things" 3 of them were about the size of the lower case "e" on the delete button on your keyboard, a slightly opaque whitish color and kinda flat, blob looking ovals. There were about 4 smaller ones. Then there was a larger, about the size of the # symbol on your keyboard, flat, red thing which had very ragged edges on all sides, but in a general "round" shape. There was also a smaller version of the red thing that appeared. Does this sound like flat worms?

Anyways, my hope is that this was what was ailing him and that now he will develop a stronger appetite. My LFS suggested a medication that is reef safe (started with a "pro" I think) to treat my main tank with, but he said that the medication was incompatible with the current copper treatment, so I will hope that this FW bath took care of most of them, and I will wait another week (4 weeks total) before I remove the copper from the QT tank, then treat my QT and main tank. How does this plan sound?
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Old 12-07-2008, 10:42 AM   #19
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You are almost 2 weeks into the process and the CB is still alive, which is a great sign. At this point, you will probably see full recovery. I would continue the current course of treatment, and consider doing future FW dips, given the success your species has shown with this course of treatment.

I would personally not treat the main tank with medication. I believe medication to be a last resort if other options are available. Realize however, that opinions on this topic are very diverse and you have to do what seems to be working in your situation.
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Old 12-08-2008, 10:53 PM   #20
Thanks for the advice.

Since the display tank seems to be unaffected by the crypto or by the flatworms I think that I will hold off on the medications especially since I have since invested a little more time and $$ in my corals etc.

Back to the CB angel, he's still doing well. I actually saw him eat something for the first time last night (well, besides pecking at some things) when he ate a "tetra crisp", which I usually feed to my FW tank, but I figured that I would try it and he actually came up to the surface to eat! I also put some mysis in there, which laid on the bottom, but at least they were gone this morning.
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