saltwater fish have the powdery/flour like substance on body - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 6 Old 11-03-2006, 09:44 AM Thread Starter
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saltwater fish have the powdery/flour like substance on body

Hello I am new and have a problem taking place in my saltwater tank. It appears that my saltwater fish, 2 clowns and yellow tang have this powdery, flour type substance on their bodies along with now ICH that came about on Wednesday evening. I had a flaming angel that this took hold of and died yesterday. To retrace my steps and sorry for the long email. I purchased a regal tang and flaming angel on Sunday. The yellow tang did not take to kindly to the regal tang and beat it up. I though aside from the beating it looked like it had contracted ICH, so I purchased a hamster ball and placed the yellow tang in that so the regal could recover never did, it died that day. Due to me treating with "Wardly" Ich medicine I did a water change and replaced the filter Wednesday. Yesterday, I had the water tested and everything was normal except the PH was a little low. 7.9 Purchased some Kent product. Temp is about 79 degrees. I also bought a "wrasse" last night at the stores advise instead of the ICH medicne. Any assistance will be greatly appreciated. Could it be the water? I changed it tested ok, Filter? I also put crushed coral in Sunday. Again water appears to be ok except PH. Thanks

Steven :(
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post #2 of 6 Old 11-03-2006, 02:37 PM
For right now do not put no more fish in there. The yellow tangs are very aggresive and if you wanted one should've added it last. If you add any more fish its likely that the yellow tang will try to kill them. I've had bad times with blue tangs as once they got ick I could not save them. The fish are probaly getting stressed because of the PH. What are your other water parameters, tank size, filtration, and saltlinty. Do you have any inverts and corals? You have some options, you can buy a UV sterilizer to get the Ick that is free floating, also you can soak they food in a garlic solution(from your LFS) to build up there immune system to fight of the ick, You can also give them a freshwater bath. You do this by catch the infected fish and insert him in a bowl of declorinated, same water temp freshwater for 15 mins or till you see the fish breathing rapidly, or set up a quaritine tank and treat all the fish in that tank.
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post #3 of 6 Old 11-03-2006, 02:54 PM
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It sounds more like an aggression and stress issue, but I'm waiting to see the water params and tank size before I would offer a solid guess. For sure no more fish into that tank until you get it stabalized and until the current fish are healthy again.
Then, if it were me, I'd be going back to the LFS and kicking the person who sold you the last fish. Why would anyone suggest adding a healthy fish to a tank with an ick outbreak? That's like taking a healthy child and sticking them into a room full of kids with a highly contageous form of the flu! I would have thought that this was simply common sense, but apparently LFS's aren't known for that???
Once we know what animals (including corals and inverts) are in the tank, tank size, and water params, we may be able to help offer a name for a safe medication to use.
Small water changes may also help to bring your pH back up.

Dawn Moneyhan
Aquatics Specialist/Nutritionist
Juneau, WI
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post #4 of 6 Old 11-03-2006, 02:58 PM
I think that the LFS was thinking that the wrasse would clean the ick of the fish, which a cleaner wrasse would do but,(if thats what it is) you add them when the tank is in a healthy state, not when it going down hill. But that person that sold you that shouldv'e known that.
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post #5 of 6 Old 11-04-2006, 09:40 AM
Originally Posted by usmc121581
I think that the LFS was thinking that the wrasse would clean the ick of the fish, which a cleaner wrasse would do but,(if thats what it is) you add them when the tank is in a healthy state, not when it going down hill. But that person that sold you that shouldv'e known that.
Yep I agree. I was taken aback to see that adding a fish was the recommendation. I hope the little guy makes it. Also from what I've seen in a tank environment cleaner shrimp do a better job than wrasses.

You sound very new to the hobby and may have rushed in. It is time to back out and restart. Please if at all possible get a 10g tank and a small HOB type filter. You'll need a small heater as well. Put your fish in that quarantine tank for a few weeks. You can medicate in there. Wardley's deosn't make any marine meds or foods to my knowledge. If they do they are sold at those Petco's and Petsmart super centers. Most of the stuff I see in those places are marketed for a quick sale than to be any actual help. Look into setting up the little quarantine tank with a low SPG and a temp of about 86F. Daily freshwater dips will also cause marine ich to disappear a little more quickly. To do such you preapre 2 bowls of water. One a clean source of distilled water (be it RO, RO/DI or distilled as sold at your local food supermarket), and the other with water from teh 10g. You put the fish in the freshwater for about 30 seconds. This will cause the virus to react and your fish will want to shed it's slime coat. Add the fish to the tank water bowl for a few minutes to calm down and shed their coat. Add them back to the 10g tank. Keeping the temp above 85F speeds up the life cycle of the bug and will also prevent them from laying more eggs. It will help break the chain. Removing all the fish from the tank will kill the virus off in about 3-4 weeks. You can leave your inverts in the tank and there will be no need to medicate the main tank.

You really need to help us help you by adding more info about your tank.

reef, fish only, FOWLR IE any coral?
Water params (they can be had for free at most LFS)

The more you tell us the easier and faster we can try to help.
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post #6 of 6 Old 11-14-2006, 01:06 PM
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More information about the tank would be very useful.

To clear up things, Ich isn't a virus, it is a parasite. Freshwater dips may help, but are usually ineffective against the parasite because it burrows under the mucous coat of the fish where it cannot be reached by the freshwater. The best treatment for any marine parasite is a medication containing copper, but this will also kill any inverts in your tank along with destroying some of your bacterial filtration.

Two medications that work effectively against almost anything when used in conjunction are Kick-Ich and Rally. Only Kick-Ich will work by itself against Ich, but Rally does effectively treat bacterial infections. Both do not contain copper and are invert safe. If you can quarantine any of your sick fish into a hospital tank that would be your best course of action, and you can use a copper based medication. If not, those two medications would be very useful in your tank.

Also be careful with what type of tangs you are putting in your tank. Anything in the genera Zebrasoma tends to be pretty aggressive, and any tangs with a similar body shape are going to fight with one another. Make sure you're not overcrowding either. Tangs are very susceptible to ich and should be quarantined before being placed in your tank. Even the slightest amount of stress can cause an outbreak.
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