Is this bloat? Dying Kuhli Loaches - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 14 Old 09-10-2013, 10:36 PM
Chesh's Avatar
I ran into the same problem when trying to add to my shoal of Kuhli - they were VERY scarce around here all last year. They finally started coming in, but the shops (and many members here, and on other forums) were all complaining of 'bad batches' in which the entire shipment would die. It's really sad. :( Now I'm seeing some healthy ones finally - and I have no QT space for them! I hope I can find a few more healthy ones in a few months when I'm ready for them :/ Hope you find some more, too - if you're looking still. . . to the best of my understanding ALL Kuhli found in shops are wild caught. I've read reports of them breeding in captivity, but so far it always seems to have been kind of accidental. Nobody has been able to intentionally breed them yet, so no farming for Kuhli. Not sure what's going on out there that we've been seeing so many sick ones. . . I don't know that I would be looking for more if I'd experienced something like that, those images are pretty awful - I'd have been a disaster if I had been forced to see it IRL. *hugs* On the other hand, how can you resist Kuhli!???

I REALLY hope your last survivor remains well - and I've seen many tanks in which exactly that did happen. *crosses fingers* VERY HAPPY that you aren't seeing any worms. Fingers firmly crossed that this was the end of it for you. . .

I've never seen BB sized gravel! Whatever it is, you had your original loaches for years - they seem to be fine with it. The biggest concern - aside from those tender bellies - is their super sensitive barbels, which sharper gravels and sands can wear down and erode. Loaches use them to find food, don't do very well without - just something to keep an eye on if you haven't been. . . they can be fine kept over smaller, rounded gravels. Its usually the 'sharper' ones most commonly sold in pet shops that seem to cause issues - but that's only what I've read. :)

If/when you do decide to treat the tank, be very sure to double, tripple check doses for ALL of the animals who live there. Loaches especially have very small scales, and are super sensitive to meds - I don't know about the rest of your fish. . . Please keep us updated on how things go in your tank. . . *worries*

Last edited by Chesh; 09-10-2013 at 10:41 PM.
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post #12 of 14 Old 09-11-2013, 02:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Sunsetsonata View Post
]First off, my tank: 20L freshwater, 3 years old, pH 7.6, API test kit shows perfect chemistry, Whisper 30 filter, long bar bubbler, water changes about once a month (with vacuumed substrate), lighting during the day. I have tiger barbs and a couple bolivian rams. But love kuhli loaches and have had 3 for about 2 and a half years. Decided to get 6 more - was told they were wild caught from Indonesia. No quarenteen...

Seemed healthy and active. But after a few weeks, started losing about one or two a week. At first I assumed it was my older ones. The first 3 that died got really fat and white - now I wonder if they were the new ones, pregnant and egg-bound. My original loaches never spawned. And now I'm down to ONE. Some I found dead with no sign of abnormalities. And some I found with a different kind of swelling, near the anus. One looked injured - but I've never seen a single fish go after these guys, and I like sitting and watching them daily.

I fed pellets that my older ones ate just fine - not sure if the new ones took to them or not. But I also feed frozen food 2-3 times a week.

My other kuhlis were just fine before I adopted these guys. Such a cool fish.
I would say not dropsy, but more of a wound that got infected. In the pics is shows a bad wound that is open and festering. I don't know your tank but it looks like it got bit by something.

"A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger."
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post #13 of 14 Old 09-11-2013, 08:13 PM Thread Starter
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Well, that's that. My healthy looking kuhli died tonight. :( No swelling, no injuries. Had been navigating the bottom in the open the last couple days and tonight I found it on its side. Moved it to the isolation "box" where it continued to languish. Died within the hour.

I bought these kuhlis on July 15th. So they lasted close to 2 months. I can't help but think that if I didn't get this batch, my original 3 would still be around. :(

My other fish remain fine, eating well, looking great, being active.

I'm at a crossroads regarding the future of this tank. Not going to get anything til I continue to see my other fish thrive. I know black kuhlis are hardier but there's something about those zippy striped guys. If I try again, I not only risk more losses, but the health of the rest of this tank. Ugh. So I may end up giving black kuhlis a try.

Does anyone know where to get more BB sized gravel? What I have I bought probably 25 years ago and I think is the best size. I have another tank with regular gravel I'd like to replace with small gravel - or maybe try the sand route for the first time, if I end up putting kuhlis in there instead.
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post #14 of 14 Old 09-11-2013, 11:41 PM
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Very sorry you lost your kullis. I guess we don't know for sure what happened after all. Only guessing. I am glad to hear your other fish remain uninfected/unaffected. Keep in mind that internal parasites can be species specific.

I think it's a good idea to let the tank and others recover, by taking a bit of a break, but do you think you could quarantine the next time? It doesn't have to be anything fancy, and a month set up should do it, unless you start seeing symptoms of disaster in that month. It makes them easier to treat also.

I haven't seen BB sized gravel myself, but I have seen a larger grade of sand, kind of in between gravel and sand (maybe closer to sand though) at a store called "Club Piscine" located in Ottawa (I live in Canada).

Again, I am sorry about your loaches, better luck next time :)
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