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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We have recently purchased a clown loach and today we noticed that it has a white fluffy kind of thing on the right hand side of his face (as you look at him) near his eye and on the left hand side a little bit down the side of his body but not as much as on the right.

It's Sunday and no aquariums are answering their phones so I assume they're shut hence why I signed up here, to see if anyone cold help.

Thank you.
 

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hi, im no expert but sounds like fungal/bacterial to me? the others on ere have more experience but wat r ur water parameters? r they normal? i believe if it is funus or bacteria, methylene blue will help??? please correct if i am wrong guys.
 
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What size tank do you have?
Do you test your water?

Could be cotton wool symptoms are..
White spots on mouth, edges of scales, and fins
Cottony growth that eats away at the mouth
Fins disintegrate beginning at the edges
'Saddleback' lesion near the dorsal fin
Fungus often invades the affected skin
Rapid gilling in cases where gills are infected

If these are symtoms treatment is..

Change water
Vacuum gravel
Add aquarium salt
Treat with copper sulfate or antibiotic
Discontinue carbon filtration during treatment
External infections should be treated with antibiotics or chemicals in the water. Copper sulfate, Acriflavine, Furan, and Terramycin may all be used externally to treat Columnaris. Terramycin has proven to be quite effective both as a bath, and when used to treat foods for internal infections. Salt may be added to the water to enhance gill function. Livebearers in particular will benefit from the addition of salt, however use caution when treating catfish, as many are sensitive to salt. I am almost sertain clown loaches are very sensitive When I had Ich I had to use a special treatment.

What size tank do you have?
Do you test your water?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It's a 30L tank/bowl thingy.

Where can I get this special treatment from?

I haven't had the water tested for about a month now.

Funny question, how do you vacum the gravel? With the pump I assume? As in the pump to clean the water it, syphon (spelling?).
 

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Copper sulfate is available in your lfs. You'll need to upgrade your tank. 30 liters is far too small for clown loaches.

Other treatments for columnaris:
Sera Baktopur and Sera Baktopur Direct(tablet)
When using these meds, be sure to do it in a hospital tank, not the main tank as both medications can harm your beneficial bacteria. Be careful when dosing, half-dosage is recommended as clowns are far too sensitive with medications and salt(should be dissolved before added).

You siphon the gravel using the gravel vacuum. Not sure which pump you mean.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's okay hon, no offense taken.

I did mean a gravel vacuum, I never knew such thing exsisted.

The reason we bought a Clown Loach is because we had a snail problem so we got rid of all our old plants, bought some new ones and the clown loach although we still have a snail problem.
 

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I vacuum the substrate in a horizontal position so the substrate won't get suck up too fast.:) Sand gets sucked up easily than the gravel though so when vacuuming, try not to put the vacuum too close to the sand as the detritus are just above the sand.:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It died :(

Basically I hadn't seen it all day and I was on the phone to an aqarium and they said to buy a medication for him which I did and - my boyfriend - got home and found two lampie tetra fish and the clown loach on the bottom under some gravel. He had to take out all the plants again fishing out around 50 snails, boiled the log to get rid of them and some of the pebble thingys and now we have a very empty biOrb.

I would really appriciate a dummies guide to looking after tropical fish if anyone wants to post it on here or pm me as I don't want anymore fish to died, it makes me feel sad.

He also syphened a lot of water out to get everything sorted.

Are plastic plants better?

Also what has anyone found that has actually worked to get rid of snails? He's fished them all out (he thinks) so hopefully it won't be a probem but I thought proper plants were better for the fish.

We think one of our guppies has fin rot too :([/i]
 

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plastic plants and live plants is about personal opionion. Live look better and eats nitrates but can be expensive and can be hard to take care of. Fake plants are easier to take care of. As for your guppies fin rot, i wouldnt worry too much about it if you start treating it immediatly as it is an easiley curable disease.
 

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Knowing your water params right now is extremely important. If your fish need medicating, you'll first need to make sure the water quality is safe enough for using meds.
Can you please post water params for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH? What fish are still in this tank and how many gallons is it? How much water was taken out? Was filter media replaced or cleaned recently? How long has the tank been set up?

We'll need answers to all of these questions and anything else you can tell us about the tank so we can properly help you.

As for the snails... use leaf lettuce. Put a piece in the tank, when it's full of snails, pull it out, throw it away, and put in a fresh piece. Don't leave a piece in for more than 48 hrs at a time. It may take a little while, be eventually you'll get the snails out before they have time to lay more eggs, and thus you will get rid of them. I have coached my customers on using this method for years and I have yet to hear a complaint or failure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Amonia - 0.01
Nitrite - 0.25
Nitrate - 25

We have 1 plep, 7 lampie tetra, 4 guppies, 1 thai fighter fish and 1 swordtail thing.

Put a new air stone in today.
Put bacteria stuff in today.
Put medication in today.
Put in swordtail fish today.
We were told to take the white foam pad out as it might interfere with the medication and now it's going mental - the filte - and it's rocking the surface.
Should we put the sponge back in as we don't want to stress the fish?

It's a 30L biOrb. I'm not sure what that is in US Gallons.
 

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With water quality reading as it is, this is the worst time to add medication to the tank. Ammonia and nitrite can cause adverse effect when meds are being used, and too often I have seen entire tanks wiped out simply by making this mistake.
Your water params indicate that this tank is going through a cycle, and especially for loaches, that can be harsh on the animals.
I agree that meds are probably needed, but it will be important to know which meds are safe to use and for the water quality to be safe enough to use these meds.

What I see here is a population problem and compatibility problem with the figher fish. 30 liters = 7.9251615300000005 gallons. That is a lot of fish in such a small tank. Is there a heater in this tank? What is the temp? Can you also post the pH level, please?

Overall, the first thing I can say is that for all of these fish, you're going to need a larger tank. The "plep" in your list I am assuming was meant to mean pleco? Do you know if this is a common pleco or other species? Pics would help a lot.
I'll wait to see your next post before I get too specific on the things your fish are going to need, but in the mean time the best thing you can do is to put the carbon back into your filter, daily water changes of 10 - 20%, and slow the feedings down to every other day what your fish can FINISH within 1 minute.
Your problem is fixable, but you will need a larger tank if you intend to keep all of these fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
It's highly irritating as I have one person saying one thing and another person saying another!

The plep is a little sucker fish about and inch long.

We can't really upgrade our tank, it's too expensive over here.

There is a heater and at the moment it's on 25C.

The lampie tetra are 1.5cm long.

I don't know the ph, the guy didn't test it as he said it 'wasn't that important'.

The fighter fish hasn't touched any of the other fish at all. He's dosile.

I hope our tank isn't wiped out. The guy at the aquarium told us to put the meds in by the end of the day which I did.
*No swearing, pls.:)
Blue


We're keeping an uber close eye on the fish at the moment. None of them seem stressed *touch wood* at the moment.

I'll be able to get the ph level soon to you.

Thank you so much for your help, I really appriciate it.[/i]
 

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Fluff, I feel for your situation, I know how difficult it can be. Unfortunately, the majority of the people who work in LFS fish departments don't know squat about fish. There are no special requirements for working in most fish rooms, and no training, either. Those businesses are out there to make money, little or no thought is given to customers and animals when it comes to education. Money tends to make people forget that these are living, breathing, feeling creatures, and they deserve proper care.

I will help from here as much as I can. I'd keep a close eye on the betta, and if you notice any fins with nips in them, including his, I'd move him to a bowl of his own. He doesn't need all of the same things the other fish do... bettas prefer still water, shallow environment, and warm temps.
You'll also want to make sure you're giving the betta actual "betta food", either pellets, brine shrimp, or black worms. The contents of standard tropical flake food doesn't provide a proper diet for the betta, and even if he's eating it, that usually leads to health problems later on.

One thing I want to mention, for everyone's benefit: The reason there are boards like this online is because there is so little information actually given out at LFS's. Fish have specific needs, and unfortunately, for too long have been viewed by the general public as disposable. The concept of "put it in water and watch it swim until it dies" is fading as more and more people are learning to care about the animals that were for so long forgotten. Our government spends more money in a year on space research than they do on reasearching our own plantet's aquatic environments. I find it sort of scary that we can go into outerspace safely and return, but we can't visit our own ocean floor yet. The human race is a slow one, and a bit backwards on how it does things. Boards like FF are here to help where no other help is easily found. There ARE people who do this for a living, such as myself and my husband and the people we work with. The resources are out there, just not easily found.

What I offer for advice when talking to LFS staff about fish... Ask them a question that you already know the answer to and see what they say. Do a bit of reading on something specific, be it water quality or a specific species of fish, and put some honest questions to these people and listen to what they tell you. Some of their answers may even make you laugh. If you find someone who DOES seem to know what they're talking about, stick to that person and learn all you can from them. I tell my customers to always find 3 resources for advice, READ THE BOOKS OUT THERE, research educational sites online, and visit message forums where people have actual experience. Then, weigh your information. You will begin to see where information matches and where it stops, and that will guide you on what questions to seek more answers to before taking any 1 word for it. A friend of mine overheard her general manager telling a customer that bettas blow bubbles out of holes in the tops of their heads like a dolphin. She laughed at him so hard she made a scene. She had been formeerly trained with me, where the training was reliable, accurate, and never ending. Our job was to know it all, and to be able to answer correctly any questions we were asked. If a question came up that we couldn't answer, our job was to find the right answer. If we guessed and gave inaccurate information and were found out, we were sent home with our last paycheck. There are very very few stores like that anywhere in the world. Places like Petco and Petsmart are warehouses, and do not train their staff like that. They offer very little training at all, and the same falls true for many other, smaller, private retailers.
One other thing you can do is to complain to corporate offices about the lack of training and experience in their staff. Write them letters and call them, COMPLAIN! If the customers just accept this behavior, then the retailers have no reason to change how they do things, and your frustrations only continue to burn and innocent animals continue to die... all of which time they are simply counting out your money.

Can I ask what kind of medication you were given and the list of ingredients on the packaging? The more information you can give, the more someone will be able to help you.
Knowing your pH level is going to be just as important as knowing ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate. A sudden drop or rise in pH can indicate all kinds of possible problems, and can also be lethal to the animals in your tank. If someone told you that pH didn't matter, I would say that his advice doesn't matter, because he obviously doesn't know what he's talking about.
Good Luck to you and your fish!!!
 

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Just throwing in my 2 cents on that last post. My mom has been working on setting up a saltwater tank (which unfortunately I don't have much experience with so I can't offer her too much help) and goes around asking people at the various stores in the area. Every once in a while I come along just to see what kind of advice she gets. Usually its different advice on the same thing from every store. The guy at petland is the worst...sold her inadequate filtration, heater, lighting etc...and once tried to convince me that discus live in water with a pH of 7.5 in the wild which I know to be blatantly false. If you do manage to find a place where you actually trust the employees to know what they're talking about I suggest sticking to them for advice rather than switching back and forth because two different stores are telling you two different things. Now if only I could get her to stick with talking to the people at the smallest lfs in the area (who somehow have managed to stay in business for 10 years despite being within a few blocks of a petsmart, petland, AND petco...because they actually know what they're talking about and won't try to sell you something that you don't need or doesnt work) she'd probably be good to go. They're the ones that were most helpful when I was converting my main tank to keep discus along with a great deal of knowledge they gave me about breeding the various fish I have over the years. Unfortunately with most stores....especially the big petco type places...they simply don't care or simply don't know...and either one causes problems for the people that buy from them. I'd rather pay a little more from the small shop that knows what they are talking about than save a buck initially at the big store only to have what I bought not do the job it was supposed to. And one more perk to the small shop...they know me, what I keep, and have even told me how to do some diy projects (like a co2 reactor) rather than sell me the ones they have available. You dont find that everywhere!
 
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