More Recent/Older, Accrued FAQs
Guest Post on Your Website Wetwebmedia.com
I hope you are doing well.
I'm Emma Lewis, a professional article writer and Aquarium lover.
I would like to contribute a high-quality article by following all
guidelines provided by you.
I promise that I will provide HIGH quality content of 2000+ Words that
you won’t find anywhere else.
Here are my two ideas that will be the perfect choice for your website
*Learn the Basics About Aquarium Canister Filters *
*How to Make Your Pet Reptile's Love You *
What do you think about these ideas? Which one of them is more suitable
for your site?
<We only "do" aquatic reptiles...>
Looking forward to hearing from you. Thanks
<You're welcome to make independent submissions. We pay $200 for
non-exclusive use/posting if accepted. Bob Fenner>
Guess what. I have a problem (Reef hlth)
Good day dearest WWM team,
<Good day Evelyn>
As many, a long time reader and fan.
So. I have a 120 gallon reef tank with:
Bubble magus 7 skimmer
<A very nice product>
<Do you change this often?>
<Am not a fan of this, I rely more on DSB>
Ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate 1.5
Phosphate 0.02, cal. 500, magnesium 1500, KH 8.7 brought down from 11.
Dose: Redsea A and B
The tank has been running for just about 3 years.
Fish: 2 little wrasses, 2 antheas, a little fox , a mandarin, a damsel,
all non coral disturbing fish with the exception of the fox I suppose.
The tank is mostly soft corals, the usuals, and a few SPS right at the
summit of the rock work.
<What about aquarium lighting, water temperature… have you added new
fish or corals recently?>
Huston, here’s the problem: the softies are NOT happy and declining in
health. They look shrunken and blasé, some flesh of the prized scoly has
deteriorated along the edges. A tree, not a Kenya, just decided to
‘spontaneously’ die after 2 years.
<Mmm, this is certainly not a good sign>
Our meat coral the size of a small dinner plate is now the size of a
peony. We had a RTN of a large SPS about 3 months back, it did not
spread to any other.
I change my socks every 2 days religiously.
Your thoughts ??
<How often do you change aquarium water and what percentage each
time?... salt contains very important elements that get “used up” by
marine organisms and need to be replaced. I suggest doing an immediate
partial water change, 15 or 20% at least and see if corals show any
improvement in the next few days.>
<You’re most welcome. Wil.>
Re: Guess what. I have a problem 1/13/20
Oh! Very important omitted things, there’s just so much.
The lighting: 2 maxspect razor 420 R 15,000K, places about 11” from the
surface of the tank.
Water change 20% once per month.
The carbon is changed every 2 to 3 weeks
<Regularly, carbon gets exhausted and loses adsorption capacity in the
first few days, beyond that it will turn into a biological filter.>
Temp is 78f, PH is 8.8
< A bit high, try to maintain it around 8.3>
Another death I did not report was that of a brain, it just randomly
stayed closed and very slowly disintegrated.
It’s like, a slow decline in the health of the softies, yet some others
appear to be flourishing. It’s been ‘stable’ for so long, no recent
Sometimes I feel that if you screw with tank chasing after numbers it
just interferes with the balance.
<You’re right on this, personally I don’t lose sleep thinking about the
numbers...good maintenance practices maintain water chemistry balanced.>
I think that I had a better tank when my KH was 7 and my mg was 1350 and
my nitrates were 15 and I had hair algae. I think tanks find their own
balance with peoples circumstances different city water etc. any
<I suggest returning the numbers to where they were before the losses,
please do keep us posted. Wil.>
Re: Jewel cichlids; repro., comp.
I just got 5 albino bristlenose plecos and 5 Silvertip plecos. All
are about 1 1/2 inches. Can i put them in with my breeding pair of
<Not if you want them to live, no. Seriously: breeding cichlids of
any sort are very intolerant of bottom feeding fish, and small
catfish like these are likely to be hammered by Jewels. Not worth
the risk. As a rule, keep breeding cichlids in their own tank, not
least of all because it makes water quality management and feeding
fry easier. Keep your community fish for their own,
My tank is 48"x18"x12"?. By the way thank you for taking time out to
answer my questions.
<You are most welcome. Regards, Neale.>
Old age (!); WWM input
I have been to your site hundreds of times for 12 plus years...my
only problem, is that you (your site) believes in reinventing the
wheel over and over again....
lets take all that we have bettered our selfs in, in the last 3 to 4
years, and make this our strive.....most of your site is way over 10
years...why dont you create a old past age section of trials and
<The FAQs, questions/answers are dated, the newest posted at the
top, newest files>
.and todays, works purty good areas.... im sure there are 10's of
thousands that do not care what they did in reef aquariums, or any
other aquariums 20 years 10 years 5 years ago....please make a
section of whats new going on ( only last 3 years... never older)..
so i not listening to cave men scratching.............
Water spray boxes...is a glass or acrylic box, water is sprayed
against back at great pressure, and drops out bottom to recollect in
refugium *****. a one cubic foot sand box, for the new - wet dry
filter.. in a wet dry tank. Make a cube that fits where bio balls
used to be. Make handles where you can pull this every 6 months to
rinse and rinse sand...and put back in... please try to keep as much
of the finer finds as you can...... one and a half inch sponge on
bottom. 20 pound bag "carib sea ocean direct" leveled...... and your
wet dry drip tray above.... nature uses the beach to filter Her
A protein skimmer only operates one hour daily for 6 days, and than
6 hours on 7th...
Throw those stupid filter socks away
My very first saltwater tank. 8 years before the red bugs, killed
eco system, created algie explosion..
A tank set down.........fish are 9 years old ( different real fast
set up tank).
First tank-- 30 gallon (called turtle tank) is my medicine tank. A
50/50 power compact light 24 inch..
..a 1/4 inch tubing from main tank feeds tank with another 1/4 inch
line to Drain
Regium is 125 gallon 6 section, a pump to drain the water to a drain
in hot water tank room for water changes.....and a automatic float
for new 8 stage rodi water coming in.....i hit a switch and turn a
valve ......and i did a water change.....4 --inch and a half lines
from main tank in...feeding refugium...100 pounds maybe closer to
150 pounds ocean real rock, 4 inch sand bed, 5 - one pound bags
Has 2 Rio 2800 pumps feeding up to a "my reef creations" double
becket protein skimmer..(capable of 800 gallons.... big boy)
Spill from protein skimmer feeds into side of a 30 gallon wet dry.
First chamber, 20 pounds pencil size broken coral branchs, fills to
top to drip tray, which has 1 layer nitrate and 1 layer phosphate
filter media 14x12 inch....driping to sand box....... drain back
down to refugium..
A gold dart return pump ......feeding 4- inch and a half pvc lines
to main tank..these return lines are over back of tank...all 4 holes
in over flow boxes.. bottom, are being used for drain
Main tank is double reef ready 135 gallon 72x16x27 tall..250 pounds
real ocean rock , 4 to 5 inch sand bed
Lights are from one side to the other.. lights are 24 inch running
front to back of tank....from left to right.....
2- t5 24 inch atintic bulbs.all lights are on own timers... 20
minutes before second set lights......than 2. T5 24 inch day bulbs.
Than 20 minute before next light set.....than a 250 watt 20k metal
halide.....45 minutes later a giesemann vervve led light comes on.
And the first actinic bulbs go off.. than 10 minutes the first day
bulbs go off.. 45 minutes later another 250. - 20k metal halide
comes on.*****.metal halides and giesemann vervve lights are on 7
hours each.*****...than a second t5 day bulb comes on right side of
tank and the first metal halide goes off.....than a second t5
actinic light comes on right side of tank 20 minutes and the vervve
goes off...45 minutes latter the second metal halide goes off...20
minutes t5 day bulbs off....20 minutes latter t5 actinics off. Night
blues on all night.
And life bites you in the wallet...but we continue to prove our
"""Man kind will eat himself"""
And i do love your site...just imposible finding new. New. New
Maybe site is operating by dinosaurs.. ..dinosaurs are making a come
back you know
<Well, your point... that new/er information may be more pertinent,
useful... is taken. I've responded... and would state, how you gonna
know where you are unless you know where you been? Am more than fine
w/ WWM as an archival tool. Perhaps you'll make something new/er,
more novel. Bob Fenner>
A woman in my angelfish group has a sick angelfish.
He's not bloated but he swims with his nose pointing up. Thanks
<Please do have them write us; with particulars re the system, water
quality measures, diet, and imagery if they think this will help.
Re: Trichopodus leerii food 1/12/20
Thank you! This gourami is not going to make it...
I’m on the third and final dose of Kanaplex after many water changes
and removing the carbon from the filter—I hate medicating my tank
but I thought it was necessary here—and now he’s showing fin rot,
lost posture, and rocking back and forth. If I lose him, and after I
let the tank sit stable for a while, do you think a smaller gourami
would work in my setup, such as a T. chuna?
<In a tank this size and shape, I'd be thinking perhaps of a 'bed'
of floating vegetation at the top, and then something smaller, like
Sparkling Gouramis or Croaking Gouramis. Both associate with
floating plants, and being farmed but not selectively bred, they're
pretty robust. Sensitive to cold air, like all labyrinth fish, but
the Sparkling Gouramis are tiny fish, and would be fine in a
columnar tank. They have lovely colours! Floating Indian Fern would
be an ideal plant to use, being adaptable and forming thick beds
several inches deep, if doing well. Do see BobF's piece on this
excellent species, here:
Re: Trichopodus leerii food 1/12/20
Great ideas all around, thanks so much!
<Most welcome. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: EBA with Sunken belly 1/11/20
<Hello again, Susan,>
Well, I decided to dose General Cure until my heater arrived and I
could set up his hospital tank. He appears to be responding somewhat
to this treatment as he is coming out of hiding to greet me and he
ate a small amount of blood worms mixed with Metroplex last night.
I'm finishing the second dose of General Cure today.
SeaChem says they usually recommend not to do both (treat water
column and do medicated food, they said General Cure is comparable
to Metroplex with some Prazi added).
<Would seem logical; doing both would be an overdose, with perhaps
unhelpful results to either fish or filter.>
Do you think it would be wise to continue with medicated food
(straight Metroplex) after I've finished with the General Cure if I
don't see 100% improvement?
<Yes, but I tend to favour waiting a day or two between the end of
one course and the start of another. Certainly, doing a decent water
change at this point gives the filter bacteria a breathing space.>
I want to knock out whatever bug he has but I don't want to over
SeaChem says to feed for 3 weeks which tells me the dose in the
food, while effective, is on the low side.
<Possibly, but remember: when fed as food, you're getting all the
medicine into the fish; when added to water, only a tiny fraction is
absorbed through the skin because its so massively diluted by the
aquarium water or metabolised by other organisms in the tank. So
feeding the fish generally ensures a closer-to-optimum concentration
of the medicine inside the fish.>
Thank you for tip on using Zeolite in the hospital tank filter to
control ammonia. I usually use Prime but I know it can reduce O2
levels especially when medicating. Zeolite is a better alternative.
<Indeed it is. A simply box filter will do.>
Thank you again! I can't count how many times your site and advice
has saved my fish and made me a better fish keeper.
<And thank you for these kind words. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Red Claw Crab not Eating 1/11/20
I’d like to thank you for helping me with my red claw crab.
Unfortunately, he has passed away even after adding a proper amount
of salt and turning up the temperature, as he just did not eat at
<I'm sorry to hear that.>
I don’t know the reason for his refusal to eat, but after taking
your advice, he seemed to have more energy and would actually
approach the food (but still didn’t eat it). Maybe he was sick?
<Indeed, or perhaps, he'd been away from salty water for too long.
These are tricky animals to keep well -- they need brackish water,
high humidity (cold or dry air quickly kills them), and food that
contains all the nutrients including iodine and calcium. So while
inexpensive in themselves, and not demanding in terms of space, they
I don’t know, but I’m glad I found your website and got some help.
You are very knowledgeable about these creatures, and people who are
having trouble with their pet crabs are fortunate enough to be able
to contact you for help. Again, thank you very much.
<You are most welcome, and thanks for these kind words. Good luck
with your next pet! Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Jewel cichlids; repro. 1/11/20
My jewels had fry. I moved them to their own tank. They are 2 weeks
old now. How old do they have to be b4 i can give them away? Thank
<Depending on how often they get fed (optimally: 6 small meals per
day) cichlid fry grow rapidly, but it will be some 2-3 months before
they will be a sellable size, the bigger they are, the more money
you'll get because they'll have nicer colours by then. Since males
grow faster than females, segregating the fry may be necessary to
avoid a preponderance of just the males. To be economical, you want
a fair number of fry to survive, so regular water changes (ideally:
daily) will be necessary to keep nitrate levels as low as practical.
You will almost certainly need to remove the fry from the parents
within 3 weeks. The demand for Jewel Cichlids is low, so check with
your retailer before allowing the pair to breed again. Like
Convicts, Jewels are easy to breed and rear, but being non-community
fish, only a tiny percentage of aquarium hobbyists want them.
Re: Trichopodus leerii food 1/11/20
Thank you both. Yes, I have regretted purchasing this tank since the
day I opened up the box... it’s a water quality nightmare... but
I’ve managed to keep it going for almost 5 years so it’s a personal
challenge at this point! I had a rock solid trichogaster
trichopterus for 4 years in there and my cherries and these cats are
years old (corys, as expected, grew sick of swimming to the top)...
so I think I’ve done relatively ok. I’ve always shied away from the
live foods out of both convenience (honestly) and fear of water
quality issues. Maybe it’s time to “dive” in. You and Bob have
inspired me. I will search WWM for some rookie tips on live foods.
<Understand your disappointment with the tank. Frozen foods can
substitute for live foods in many cases, so well worth trying these
out. Certainly Gouramis aren't too fussed about live vs. frozen
foods. Cheers, Neale.>
Stubborn Betta fin rot (RMF?)<<Agreed>> 1/11/20
Hi Wet Web Crew, I need some advice as how to proceed. My Betta started
sleeping draped over the suction cup on his heater.... which became an
explosive case of fin rot. Water quality is carefully managed, he has 5
gallons, plants to sleep on,single occupant. I blockaded his heater so that
he can’t get to it. He spent 5 days quarantined in Methylene Blue/salt. Only
a little bit of improvement. So now I’ve just finished 5 days of Maracyn 1
and Maracyn 2 together. He has improved further, there is some regrowth, but
there are still 5 small spots of blood at the end of the rays. What would
you do now? Wait, or treat another 5 days of Maracyn 1/2? I worry about
prolonged treatment but don’t want the fin rot to take over again either. I
also have Kanaplex but I’ve never used it. Thanks!!
<Would agree that this looks like Finrot, given then appearance and the
blood spots around the fin rays. Treating Finrot isn't normally too bad, and
repeating Maracyn 1 and 2 together should be a good next move. I'm not
surprised Methylene Blue and salt had little impact. However, Finrot
is, as you presumably know, caused by the environment. It's not a disease
that infects one fish from another. So your main job is to identify
the cause. With Bettas, common causes including water quality (filtration is
essential, with ammonia and nitrite needing to be zero) and low temperatures
(Bettas must be kept warm, 25-28 C/77-82 F being right). Cold air can also
cause problems, though not usually Finrot, but in any case, do check the air
above the tank is damp and warm (a reasonably secure hood should do this
well). Finrot can also be caused by physical damage including nippy
tankmates, and with Bettas, there's almost no justification for keeping them
in anything other than their own aquarium. Don't forget to remove carbon
from the filter while medicating. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Sunken belly (RMF?)<<Wish I had one; oh! Again, in total
Thanks Neale for getting back to me so quickly!
He was treated when I first got him as a juvie with Metroplex in food
(once a day for recommended treatment period). He was very skinny and
spitting out his food. He seemed to bounce back and he's grown and
filled out (over 5 inches). He has continued to be a picky eater,
<Does happen with cichlids; to some extent, you need to experiment, but
good quality cichlid pellets should be taken.>
I have Furan-2 by API on hand along with SeaChem Metroplex. So, do you
recommend dosing the volume of water with each med as per directions on
<Medicated food is, by far, the best approach if viable. Dosing the
water is less reliable, so should be Plan B.>
With this combo can I treat him in my planted tank thus avoiding the
stress of moving him or should I set up a hospital tank for him? I know
Metroplex won't crash my bio-filter but I wasn't sure about Furan 2 as
I've never used it.
<Metronidazole shouldn't cause any problems for plants or filters.
However, Furan-2 does seem to have a mixed reputation, and the
manufacturer states that it WILL harm filter bacteria. So the ideal is
to use Furan-2 (alongside the Metro) in a hospital tank with a
zeolite-filled box filter.
If you must medicate the main tank because it's the only one you have,
remove some of the filter media and keep damp, while also removing any
irreplaceable plants, just in case (or at least some cuttings, so you
can regrow them if needs be).>
It's one of those meds I bought to keep on hand. Also, is this combo
safe for corydoras and nerite snails?
<Should be fine for catfish, but snails likely not. Remove them. They'll
be fine in a large plastic container kept somewhere warm. Change the
water every couple days, but otherwise just make sure the lid is on
safely to keep them from escaping.>
I'm reading online that a lot of owners of EBAs are having similar
<Indeed. As stated before, the Electric Blue varieties of pretty much
everything are unreliable, at best. The relevant genetic selections that
have produced these strains seem to be connected with the genes that
provide disease-resistance. While the varieties may improve over time,
there are some selected strains of fish that never really recover.>
He has a great personality. I hope I can pull him through this. Thank
you again for your help and expertise.
<Most welcome. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Trichopodus leeri food 1/10/20
Thank you for the suggestion, I’ll give it a shot.
<Glad Bob's suggestion of use. I find Gouramis tend to have "small
mouths" and consume smaller foods than you think, preferring even
tiny live foods like Daphnia and Artemia nauplii over chunky foods.>
Could his habit of staying up at the surface be a symptom of
<It is largely what they do; they are associated with floating
vegetation in the wild, and rarely stray away from such.>
My water quality has 0 ammonia and nitrites, and my filter media is
fresh. I have a steady air stone firing plenty of air through the
tank and my filter is keeping the surface moving. The tank is a
15-gal column with 2 synodontis nigriventris and three cherry barbs,
along with the pearl.
<S. nigriventris can be a 'fin nibbler' at times, but I think the
real challenge here is the tank. 15 gallons is too small, and it's
unlikely such big fish are going to feel comfortable in this tank,
especially when it's a tall design. Cheers, Neale.>
Sunken belly 1/9/20
My electric blue Acara, Finn (so named because of a
piece missing from his dorsal fin), whom I've had for 8 months has been
off his food for past 3 to 4 days. His color is good, no clamped fins,
not hiding but he is ignoring his usual favorites (cichlid flakes. Brine
shrimp cubes and frozen Blood worms) and his belly seems a bit sunken
in. I've not seen any white feces. Tank set up is 55 gallon heavily
planted with driftwood and rocks, Fluval canister 206 and sponge filter
(rated for 80 gallons) and Aquaclear 70. Lots of filtration. Water
parameters: pH 6.6-6.8, temp 77-78°F, gH 8°, ammonia and nitrites are 0
ppm and nitrates are around 20 ppm with weekly water changes. Tank mates
are Columbian tetras and small school of Corydoras. I recently upped the
temp from 75-76° to 77-78° as he seemed sluggish. He seemed more active
in warmer temps.
My first thought was parasites. I don't think its stress related as he's
pretty mellow. I have API General Cure on hand and since he is not
eating I was wondering if best course of action would be to treat the
whole tank? I have two Angel fish currently in my quarantine/hospital
tank (one of whom I was planning on adding to his tank). I do have a 20
gallon tote I could put him in with a cycled sponge filter but I would
need to buy a heater first. Any thoughts?
<Electric Blue anything tends to be a risky purchase, with few of these
fish being as healthy as their regularly coloured ancestors. In this
case, since your tank sounds broadly about right, I'm guessing the
environment is basically fine. I'd be tempted to treat as per "mystery
ill cichlid" scenario; i.e., metronidazole alongside a nitrofuran
antibiotic. This tends to catch the usual problems cichlids waste away
(i.e., Hexamita-type infections) but doesn't unduly stress the fish or
Cheers, Neale.><<Totally agree. RMF>>
Re: Questions for 2 bettas 1/9/20
Good evening, here is an update for you. My fin rot betta finished his
doxycycline treatment. He is acting a little more normal and swimming up
to the edge of the tank to meet me and beg for food. Hopefully the rot
is done for. He seems all right, and he is at least feeling more peppy.
I am not too worried about him right now.
<Good. With improved water quality, better nutrition, time going by
alone should see this Betta improving>
My betta with suspected constipation and/or swim bladder issues I am
more concerned about. It has been a few days since I weaned him off
epsom salt in the tank (should I keep him on epsom salt?),
<Not indefinitely, no. I would limit such exposure to no more than a
and we finished a round of prazipro. While he did have some more regular
poops with epsom salt in his
tank, he remains floating on his side. There is no improvement on
swimming ability. He still spends his day floating and hiding.
<From whatever cause/s (genetic, trauma, pathogenic), he may have
suffered long/er term gas bladder damage>
Recently he has been less reactive to stimulus- an example would be he
is facing a corner and it is feeding time. I nudge him so he knows to
move and he just sits there without moving. He will remain in one spot
when other fish would flee or move. He only eats sometimes. It is
probably hard for him to know it is there, yet even when it is right in
front of his face he ignores it. Other times he goes right for it (he
can't exactly swim to his food- he really just jerks his body a few
times and hopes he gets to where he wants to be).
I make sure to take the time to push the food in front of his face so he
can eat it and remove any he may ignore or sinks to the bottom.
<I'd leave off w/ further chemical treatments here>
I really want to help him but despite all the typical things one would
do for constipation or SBD, he hasn't recovered a bit. I am considering
euthanasia if he doesn't show signs of recovery in a month or so.
Surely, a humane death is better than spending his life floating and
hiding and not being able to live a normal betta life.
<IF it's your perception that this fish/animal in your care is
Is there something else that could be wrong? Maybe something happened at
the store, at the fish farm, during shipping, etc to cause this.
<Yes; many possible inputs>
When I bought him, he was floating just as he is now. Thanks for all
<Thank you for your caring, sharing. Bob Fenner>
Trichopodus leerii food 1/9/20
Need advice on resealing a tank 1/7/20
Hello Crew, hope things are status quo in your neck(s) of the woods!
Question—any suggestions for a (preferably low maintenance) daily food
supplement to give my Trichopodus leerii in addition to flakes?
<A good quality pellet, maybe frozen/defrosted crustacean...>
My last Trichopodus loved your NLS Float suggestion but this guy spits
them out, yet my cherry barbs devour them. Package says “regular size”
1-1.5mm pellets—could these be too big for him?
NLS does not seem to sell a smaller, floating food, and he is too slow
to grab sinking food from other inhabitants. I have Hikari micro pellets
but they are smaller than flakes! Any ideas, or maybe his “begging” is
an act of dramatics? Thank you! —Matt from NJ
<I'd go with what I do... the frozen/defrosted food in addition daily
(better in the AM, use the dry in the PMs). I use (a lot) of San
Francisco Bay Brand brine shrimp; though Hikari's line are also
excellent. Bob Fenner>
I need some advice with a resealing job gone wrong on a bowfront tank.
Because the front pane meets the side panes at about a 120 degree angle,
the two structural seams between the front and side panes are very
exposed from the inside and I inadvertently cut into them when removing
the inner bead.
<How many gallons does this tank hold?>
So, where those seams should be the thickness of the glass, they're now
only half that thickness.
<Mmm, I would not trust this seam thickness to withstand the water
At first I thought I could fix my mistake if I used a strong silicone
like SCS1200 and squeezed it into the exposed seam while laying down the
inside bead. I know the new silicone won't bold to the remaining old
seam, but if the new bead is very thick, could it do a decent job
holding the panes together from the inside?
<It may do a decent job, but I don’t think it would look good
Or does that pose too great a risk of leaks down the road?
<Most likely, yes>
If that kind of patch-up method just won't do, could I remove and
reattach just the front panel?
<If this were my tank, I would just remove the old silicone and apply a
new layer between the laterals and frontal panes.>
I know the new seams won't attach to the old seams so the tank could
potentially leak at the two bottom corners, but if the inside bead is
sufficiently thick, wouldn't that be sufficient to prevent them? I know
the surest method would be to rebuild the tank completely but I might
have to move and take the tank down in just over a year so it doesn't
seem to be worth that kind of work at the moment. (If I don't end up
moving I could always rebuild the tank then.) Would either of the two
methods above work in the meantime?
Any advice would be much appreciated. Thank you!
<You’re most welcome. Wil.>
re: Slow Columnaris strain possibly
Hi again Neale, Thanks for your reply.
It seems only 2 boesmani are getting the mouth fungus and no
<Melanotaenia boesemanni has similar requirements to Guppies in
terms of water chemistry, i.e., hard and alkaline. They do require
more water current though, or at least, adapt less well to still
water/low oxygen levels than Guppies. The males can be very
aggressive though, and bite-marks around the mouth are common when
Maybe for some reason the environment is stressing them more than
the guppies? Is that possible?
<Absolutely. See above.>
One boesmani just wont let itself be caught. Going to have to try
again tomorrow so both with fungus are being treated.
<Medicating the tank may well be the only option; see our previous
messages, and elsewhere on this site. Cheers, Neale.>
ACF Fungal Infection 1/5/20
We have (had) 2 albino ACF. They are approx. 4/5 years old. They
live in a 20g long. No other tank mates. They are feed night
crawlers and feeder guppies.
<Please stop using the feeder Guppies. Whatever else is going on
here, live feeder fish -- besides the cruelty involved -- is a
sure-fire way of introducing parasites and pathogens for no good
use. It's not like these frogs need live foods.>
We do regular 50% weekly water changes with R/O water and keep the
water temp at 78.
<Why RO? Xenopus laevis do best in slightly hard water conditions:
aim for around 10-15 degrees dH, pH 7.5.>
We have two Hang on back filters and all water parameters are in
acceptable ranges - ammonia 0, nitrates 0. Not sure of water
hardness. This Leads to up my first question. Does the ph range
I cannot recall reading any info on ph ranges for frogs.
<A good deal in the scientific literature, at least. But a summary
can be found here:
Avoid soft, acid water conditions.>
I have done many hours of research and feel like we are good frog
caretakers. They have been happy and healthy for years now and loved
members of the family. Unfortunately they recently became ill. We
noticed that one of the frogs was floating at the top of the tank.
She was not going back down to her “house” where they normally stay.
She was also not wanting to eat. Not unusual for her she has never
been a good eater. We looked her over and did not see any obvious
signs of red leg or bloat. Two days later our other frog began to
mimic the same behavior. This was alarming to us as they have never
behaved this way before. Behavior change = something wrong! After
looking them over again I noticed that they appeared to have small
sheds of skin hanging from them. Immediately I knew this was a
concern bc they should shed in one big suit, I have seen it many
times! One also had a very small area of white fuzz on her butt/back
area. Google hear I come! I have been researching for 12 hours now
and can’t really come up with a definite answer as to what is wrong
<Some amount of shedding is normal, but if they're suddenly shedding
a lot of skin, and on top of that, behaving abnormally (e.g., not
eating normally) then yes, you might well suspect some sort of
I realize it’s a fungal infection. But what kind? I found info that
says amphibian fungal infections can be treated with methylene blue.
But again no clear instructions for amphibians.
<As per fish. Methylene Blue is relatively gentle, which is why we
use it freely with fish eggs. Mardel MarOxy is another good choice.>
I knew waiting to do anything was a death sentence so this is what
we did and the results so far:
3 gallons of aquarium water were removed from tank and used as bath
water for treatment. We added 2 tsp. of methylene blue and bathed
frogs for one hour. They were then put back in main tank. One frog
died within 6 hours of treatment (the one with visible fuzz) one
frog still living. I have resigned myself to that fact that my other
frog will prob not survive but will keep fighting for her!
My questions are these:
What other medications can be used? Or what medicine works best?
What dosage should it be, and how often do you treat?
<Exactly as specified for fish. Remember to remove carbon from the
filter, if used. Do also up the aeration a bit if possible.>
Should we just treat the main tank as there are no tank mates?
<I would, yes.>
Should the main tank be emptied sanitized and the surviving frog be
put new “Clean” tank?
<No need. Fungus (and Finrot-type bacteria) are entirely
opportunistic, and latent in all aquaria. Under normal conditions
they may even play a role in 'ammonification', i.e., turning
fish/frog wastes into the ammonia your filter bacteria can use.>
Any other advice would be welcomed!
<Do see above re: Guppies.>
P.S. We have discovered that the tank heater is the most likely
culprit as to why they became sick. It was on the fritz and not
keeping the tank at the proper temp. They got too cold!
<Xenopus laevis should handle room temperature without any trouble
at all. Xenopus tropicalis is more finicky, as its name would
suggest, but is less widely sold. Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>
Jewel cichlids; repro. 1/5/20
Hi, i have 6 jewel cichlids. 1 male and 5 females. 1male and 1 female have
paired off and have had 1 brood. I have removed about 90% of the fry and put
them in a tank by themselves. Will the male breed with the other females.
<Not likely, no. Generally these cichlids "pair", reproduce w/ only one
partner. Better to best count on the one pair breeding every few weeks; more
often if you separate their young from them>
2 of the females are bright in color and he spends time with them.
But most of the time he is protecting the fry. The 1st pic is of the pair
and the 2nd is him flirting with the other females.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Mixing Wrasses-Reef Tank
Hello Bob and Team!
Hope all is well. Wanted to ask about mixing different species of
wrasses in a 180 gallon reef tank.
<Well; the Labridae are a huge and diverse assemblage... Some
would/will likely mix, def. others would not>
Currently, my tank includes 2 Yellow Tangs, Blonde Naso, Purple
Tang, Flame Hawkfish, Solar Fairy Wrasse, Black Fin Fairy Wrasse,
Mystery Wrasse and a Ocellaris Clown.
I wanted to know if I would be able to add any more wrasses, my
worry is and always has been the Mystery Wrasse. He’s been a model
citizen, I’ve had him with other wrasses since he was about 1” big
and now he’s about 2.5-3”; so I feel he’s been “raised with other
wrasses” so he should be okay, but I still watch him close.
<Whatever you put in, labrid or not, you should look to the
"mystery" to assure it is getting sufficient food>
I’d like to consider adding specifically fairy or flasher wrasses
and maybe a Yellow Halichores and/or Melanurus?
<These should go/mix in fine>
I usually introduce the new wrasses with a partition for a few days
so the new wrasses aren’t harassed. I’ve been able to limit
aggression and they all coexist quite happily.
This time, I was thinking about introducing maybe 4-5 fish (my last
fish adds) at the same time without partition; assuming they are
large, healthy and boisterous. My thought is to add enough at once
that the existing residents likely won’t be able to single out a
lone target. Kind of overwhelm them with some “shock and awe”. I
have a separate 60 gallon QT/holding tank that I use to get the new
fish eating and stable before introduction to the display; so I’d
buy and hold the new fish in there until they are ready to move
In the end, my question centres around aggression; I’d like to try
and marginalize any possible targeted aggression from the mystery
wrasse to any new adds.
Let me know what you think.
<If it were me, mine, I would go ahead w/ these
introductions/additions. Bob Fenner>
Re: Mixing Wrasses-Reef Tank 1/6/20
Thank You Bob!
<Welcome Anik! B>
re: Slow columnaris strain possibly
Hi Neale. Thanks for your reply.
Im considering treating the water at a low dose since that seems to help
and moving the snails elsewhere.
<Do read up re: antibiotic resistance. Low doses ultimately do more harm
Keeping a close eye on it atm to see.
Could I medicate flake food with kanamycin or furan 2? Would that also
<Worth a shot. But Mouth Fungus is a tricky disease to cure. Kanamycin
should help, but I'd combine with salt if you're medicating with
antibiotic food. Cheers, Neale.>
re: Slow columnaris strain possibly 1/4/20
Hi again Neale thanks for your reply.
So the rainbow I put back in now is developing the fungus again. So yeah
it must be in the water unfortunately.
<I do fear; environmental issues, at least. Could be water (pH,
quality); could be temperature (too high, too low); could be oxygen
concentration (too little); could be frequency of water changes (too
big, too few); could be tankmates (aggression between male Rainbows is
common, and results in torn mouths and fins); could be extrinsic even
(noisy room, kids banging on glass, etc.).>
I thought low dose of acriflivane and malachite green.
<Worth a shot.>
Do you mean put salt in the food?
<Nope; in the water. Around 2 g/litre to start with, and after a couple
weeks, you could increase to 3 g/l if necessary. Rainbows will actually
tolerate quite high salinities even though they're not (with one or two
exceptions) from brackish water habitats, being closely related to
marine fish. So even as high as 5 g/litre will not harm them for weeks
or months at a time, but will prevent or even cure many types of
problem. Plants may be more fussy; does depend on the species. If you
let me know the species, I will confirm.>
Will salt in water hurt the plants?
<All will handle 2-3 g/l without problems, at least for short periods of
days/weeks. Higher salinities, up to 5 g/l, will be tolerated by hardy
plants such as Vallisneria, Anubias, Java ferns, etc.>
Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android
<Sent from my computer, on my lap. Cheers, Neale.>
Slow columnaris strain possibly
Hi Neale! Hope you had a great new Years :)
<So far, anyway.>
So after I got back from overseas I saw 1 of my boesmami has mouth rot.
2 guppies also died 1 from wasting amd one from no idea what since I
I swab treated the rainbows mouth with methylene blue 2x and treated him
with blue planet fungus cure in a QT tank at reduced temperature. He
Problem is some of other fish are now showing symptoms (tiny bit of
whiteness) and I cant medicate the big tank as it has plants and loads
<One approach is to take cuttings of those plants that can't be moved;
remove any specimen plants that can be moved without too much risk; and
simply lift out any epiphytes. As for the snails, rescue those you care
about, but basically let them take their chances.>
If I dosed the main tank with fungus cure at a 1/5th dose (that seems to
of cured the rainbow), would it kill my snails and plants?
<Hard to predict. I'd imagine not. But see above just in case.>
Im really having trouble navigating the snails and plants issue. Or
should I just QT and treat any fish who has symptoms or all the fish in
<Treating fish, while the pathogen remains in the aquarium, is risky.
You could, ideally, remove all the fish and medicate them, then return
them to the tank. If you leave the display tank fallow (i.e., fish-free)
for a couple weeks, that usually breaks the life cycle of the pathogen
down, but in the case of bacteria, that's less likely. Bacteria often
live harmlessly enough in aquaria doing their normal job of breaking
down organic material, and it's the fish's own immune system that stops
them becoming a disease.
In this instance, if we really do suspect Flavobacterium spp., those
will simply go dormant until a fish becomes sufficiently weakened and
damaged to allow them to cause a problem. Put another way, you can't
eliminate pathogenic bacteria from aquaria, in the same way as you can
do with Whitespot.>
Thanks I have no idea what to do
<As stated, your problem is that you can't wipe out Flavobacterium on a
fish-by-fish basis because the bacterial spores are in the environment.
Treating the fish with symptoms in a hospital tank is probably
unavoidable, and then you could hope the remaining fish have working
immune systems that are fending off the Flavobacterium just fine. With
that said, since Flavobacterium columnare very much infects fish that
are stressed and/or physically damaged, rather than just randomly, some
reflection on the causes must come into play. Cheers, Neale.>
Used acrylic tank. Help! 1/3/20
<Max; please limit the size of files to a few hundred KBytes... for reasons
stated where you found to write us>
I just got a used 90gallon acrylic tank, it was a screaming deal!(tank,
stand, light, rocks, canister filter and a nice powered gravel vac)
<This last, meh... you want to dump change out water>
so even if the tank is shot, I feel I've gotten my money. It was slightly
dark out when I looked at it and I was overjoyed to see the panels weren't
<They do look good>
In my joy, I didn't inspect the seams as well as I should have.
I am now noticing things that worry me. Since I am new to acrylic, I have
been doing research to see if the seams are acceptable(I'm guessing they
aren't and that's okay) I have found very little information on assessing
seams and would like a second opinion. Are there any surefire things to look
<Surefire? Mmm; more like matters of degree. I would likely use/trust this
tank as is; assuming it was set up on a stand that is level, planar and
strong... on a floor that isn't going to change that when the tank is
I have filled the tank completely and heard no cracks and seen no leaks, but
I'm leaving it to sit in a safe area for a few days.
<Good move, test>
Attached are pictures of what I believe are the "worst" areas. The bottom
MUCH better than the ones around the top.
<Yeah; there are techniques one can use to buff out the scratches, fill in
the outer joints (with solvent) and if it really concerns you, and you
intend to keep this tank for many years, doweling that can be solvented in
the inside seams. All this is gone over/archived on WWM. Just use the search
tool (on every page) to find the general area and read the articles and
FAQs. Bob Fenner>
Quarantine Protocol 1/2/20
I have a question about QT protocol which is similar to a question I
read sometime ago on the site but I can no longer find it, so I
apologise for any repetition.
I have a 120 Litre reef tank plus 60 Litre sump with the following
inhabitants: 1 Striped Fang Blenny, 1 Blue Green Chromis, 1 Pink Skunk
Clownfish and assorted LPS and soft corals. All fish have been in
the aquarium for over a year now and appear healthy and eat a
combination of Mysis Shrimp, live blackworms and Spectrum pellets.
However, when I initially purchased the clownfish (no quarantine - I
have learnt my lesson), it exhibited signs of Ich for a few weeks. The
symptoms then subsided after I removed it's partner who was an
aggressive female Pink Skunk and it there have been no outward symptoms
on any fish since (around a year).
Now, I know that it is likely that Ich is still present in my system
even without symptoms and I would like to add a final fish to this tank
- a Royal Gramma. I recently purchased a quarantine tank in preparation
for this but I am reluctant to take my 3 fish out of the display tank
and treat them for Ich plus leave the display fallow.
<Mmm; yes... would take a considerable period of time (longer, the
better) to be (more) assured that obligate protozoan parasites had lost
their vitality/pathogenicity... months>
The fish all seem very healthy and I do not want to risk this with a
stressor event such as moving them
to a QT. I would appreciate your thoughts on whether a 6 week quarantine
period for the Royal Gramma using Marine Pure from the display and
slowly adding water from the display over the 6 weeks to 'expose' the
fish to the conditions in my tank is a viable option.
<It is; in fact two weeks will get you about 90% of what one can hope to
My thinking is this would allow me to build up the strength of the
Gramma and observe it for any signs of
disease. I don't think prophylactic Ich treatment in QT would be any use
as I would be adding the fish to a display tank which Ich is likely
still present. Or would the benefits of removing the three fish and
treating them while leaving the display fallow for 8 weeks outweigh the
<I would go the route you suggest and NOT remove the existing fishes>
Thank you for your time and wonderful website.
<Thank you for contributing to it. Bob Fenner>
Re: Travis Carter’s Mega Angel Tank
Bob - I am getting mix views on this on the forums and i typically
take what i read on the forums with a grain of salt. I would much
rather defer to the caliber of experience such as yours. Could you
answer this for me...
Do you think a combo of Annularis, French, Queen and Imperator
Angles can coexist long term in a 650 gallon? 96x36x45.
<Oh, yes I do think these three Pomacanthids can, would likely get
along indefinitely in a system of this size, shape. Bob Fenner>
Re: Travis Carter’s Mega Angel Tank 1/2/20
Thanks Bob for the information and vote of confidence!
<Ahh, glad to render it! BobF>
January Calendar 1/2/20
Hi Bob, Happy New Year. Here is a new calendar for the website.
<Thank you! B>
Re: Red Claw Crab not Eating
Thank you very much for this help! Right after I added more salt, he
molted the next day.
Does he absolutely need to eat his exoskeleton? If so, he is not
<No, he doesn't need to eat it, but most crabs do, simply to recycle
the calcium. If he doesn't, that's fine, but do add some suitable
replacement, like a small shell-on prawn that he can pick apart and
consume. Failing that, just dusting whatever he likes to eat (fish
meat, banana, etc.) with crushed cuttlebone or even fragments of
edible snail shells (escargot) will have the same usefulness. Some
crab foods are calcium-enriched and may be good enough on their own,
but personally, I'd make a point of offering
extra calcium immediately after moulting. Cheers, Neale.>
Red Claw Crab not Eating 12/29/19
Re: Questions for 2 bettas 12/31/19
<Lance; please limit your pic/file sizes to a few hundred KBytes; we
don't have much allowed storage>
Good morning, here is an update for you. My sad little fin rot boy is
doing...the same. We got the doxy in on Friday and he has been on it
since then. Can't tell if the rot has stopped or not- very difficult to
pic of him in this old acrylic tank he is in. He does still eat and
swims a bit but chooses to hide most of the time.
<Mmm; well antibiotics take a while; and this behavior is about par for
As for my constipated betta, since adding epsom salt to his tank he
finally had his first normal betta poop.
Unfortunately nothing else has happened since then. The prazipro came in
yesterday so he is being treated with it in case parasites are causing
this ailment. He still happily eats but hides or floats. He switches
between being bloated and looking normal, but I fail to see any poop in
his tank that would suggest he is going. It is bare bottom so I can spot
anything he passes.
I attached a pic of him. He usually floats on his side like that. He
also did that at the store when I got him.
<Keep on keeping on is what I'd do, three treatments of antibiotics
(every three days), and patience w/ the latter. Bob Fenner>
Hello! Hardly anyone knows anything about red claw crabs, as I
cannot find any answers as to why my red claw crab has stopped
<Let's see if we can help.>
He is kept in brackish water conditions, has filtered water, and
water that is always about 74 degrees Fahrenheit.
<Right. Let's review first. By "brackish", how salty are we talking
about? The first thing you do when brackish water animals misbehave
is change the salinity. Many if not most come from places where the
salinity varies, so just making a change can have a positive effect.
But the bigger issue is that you need to be using a substantial
amount of salt, not the teaspoon per gallon amounts often mentioned.
I'd suggest one teaspoon per litre (i.e., a salt concentration of
about 6 gram/litre) to produce about one-sixth normal seawater
salinity. If that didn't do the trick, feel free to double that
amount, which would get you around one-third normal seawater
salinity. Either of these would be much closer to real world
situations for Perisesarma bidens. Next up, review air temperature.
23 C/74 F is very much towards the low end for a tropical animal,
and I'd crank the water heater up to 25 C/ 77 F. In cold conditions
tropical animals will slowly lose vigour, and loss of appetite is an
extremely common symptom of that. Death invariably follows soon
after, though it may take weeks to happen.>
He is able to climb to get air or be in water when he wants. I have
sand substrate. When I first got him, he would eat his food fine,
but now, he won’t eat at all. I noticed he wouldn’t eat, so I ended
up putting his food right in front of him, and he still won’t eat
<Loss of appetite in crabs is almost always a symptom of
environmental problems. Review as stated above.>
I don’t think he’s molting, because he’s been acting this way for
about 2 weeks and I was told molting should only take about a day.
<Correct, and moulting crabs tend to hide away. They do need a
source of iodine to moult successfully, for which purpose either
offer regular portions iodine-rich foods (Sushi Nori is ideal) or
else specific iodine-enriched crustacean foods sold for use in
Also, I don’t think it’s a calcium problem, as I give him special
vitamins that help provide him calcium every 3 weeks. I’m really
worried about him, and I have no idea why he is not eating.
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>
fresh water question; stkg. (albeit large) bowls 12/29/19
Hello, crew of WetWebMedia, hope you and your family and friends had
a wonderful XMAS and wish you all have a great year in 2020.
<Thank you for these kind words.>
Bob told me to email the crew with my concerns. Here goes....
I am currently visiting my family...my dad told me to go get some
fish with some color ....so he can place them in the big ceramic
fish bowls in the garden....I want to say those fish bowls
will holds about 10-15 gal ish water....just my best guess
without using a known size container to dumping water into the
fishbowl to get exact amount of water it will hold.
<Right, now, in themselves such bowls aren't really suitable for
keeping outdoor fish species in temperate zone parts of the world.
With appropriate plants and/or filtration, they could work for small
livebearer species in the subtropics (for example Mosquitofish) or
in cooler, but not frosty, places, perhaps Heterandria formosa. In
subtropical to tropical places, there are various very small minnows
that could work, such as White Cloud Mountain Minnows, or else
Ricefish. But bowls are rather compromised in various ways, not
least of all the absence of water current and the poor surface area
to volume ratio that means oxygen absorption isn't very good.>
But due to the season of the year and the temperature
starting to drop....Right now ...it has been around low to mid
60s.....So instead outside....I decide to move the fish bowl indoor
I believe I asked you guys this question before in the past....I do
not know if I remember correctly, but I believe last time you guys
suggested platy.....not sure...
<Platies are fine fish, and can live in aquaria upwards of 15
gallons given sufficient filtration, but without filters they'd be a
poor choice, and for a 10 gallon bowl, I can't see them working well
in the long term.>
I think at the time...I was looking for small fish with color to put
in the fish tank outside on the patio....we end up just use the
regular guppy that does not have those bright colors....but at least
they do keep the mosquito from growing in that fish tank.....we do
have a small water pump to keep water circulate in that tank on the
patio and water plant for the nutrient in the water....which guppy
seems to survive....but not reproducing....maybe the ones we put in
happen to be same sex? or they aren't happy....since there really
only 2-3 I believe....I will try to catch few more from koi pond and
place them in the tank on the patio and see what happen.
<Guppies will struggle to reproduce successfully in small tanks or
Assuming water quality is adequate (use a nitrite or ammonia test
kit to check) the big challenge will be in making sure fry survive.
Without enough cover, the fry are simply food for the adults. In the
wild, newborn Guppies head straight for thick plants in very shallow
water where the adults can't go. This gives them enough safety to
survive the critical first couple of weeks needed to get big enough
to avoid predation. In big tanks, a few fry will survive even
without adequate cover, but in a small tank or bowl, the odds are
ANYWAY.....my question for this fish bowl we are placing inside...currently
no water/air pump inside....just few pieces of water plants.....
with half aged tap water and half koi pond water.
The fish I end up picked out from the location was peacock guppy
fish.....I figure better of get smaller fish, instead of
<Do bear in mind that Guppies need consistent warmth to do
well, and the farmed pedigree breeds are much more
sensitive than the wild fish. So whole wild Guppies can handle
temperatures down to 22 C/72 F, your farmed Peacocks, Cobras, and
all the other famous varieties need 25-28 C/77-82 F to stay healthy.
It's like comparing a Labradoodle with a Timber Wolf -- the genes
required to handle harsh conditions of the wild have been lost in
the process of breeding something humans want in the home.>
Oh...also....there is a piece of glass on top of the fish bow and
there is a gap of ....maybe about 3mm or so in between the ceramic
bowl's rim and the bottom of the glass top acting as table's
There are about 12 guppies inside. Been away from fresh water fish
keeping so long....is that too many for current condition?
<It's a lot for 10 gallons, certainly, especially if filtration is
lacking (water movement by itself doesn't count).>
Is there any dangerous of CO2 build up to dangerous level due to no
air/water pump for circulation of water/air?
<CO2 build up is less of an issue than oxygen depletion. Nature will
take its course here quite quickly -- if there's a lack of oxygen,
some fish will die, and what remains will be the carrying capacity
tolerated by the rate of oxygen absorption.>
I know I will need to go search for a light source to provide strong
enough light for the plant....any suggestions?
<If the plants are above the waterline, emergent species, then a
sunny windowsill or conservatory would be fine for a few months.
Otherwise, yes, some sort of plant-suitable LED lamp is probably the
most cost effective and convenient approach.>
I assume most are LED now ...since when I left saltwater fish/reef
keeping was when LED just starting to taking over fish tank
<Indeed; while more expensive up front, LEDs are much cheaper now
than they were even 10 years ago, are much more efficient in terms
of running costs and maintenance.>
Will oxygen provide by the plants enough for the 12 little fishies?
<Generally, without strong lighting, the amount of oxygen from
aquatic plants is minimal. So no, don't bank on it. Much the same as
reef tanks -- sure, algae are releasing some oxygen and absorbing
some nitrate, but you wouldn't rely on either in lieu of filtration
and aeration. Large ponds are different because the ratio of plants
to fish is very much more favourable.>
probably best to have at least one small water pump...smallest I can
find...probably should work, yes?
<A filter, anyway.>
would greatly appreciated if you guys can give me any
suggestions/advice ....so we can do this right ....so fishes can
have a good place to live...
Thank you all once again...and Happy New Year
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Questions for 2 Bettas 12/27/19
One last question (or a few) before I play the waiting game with these boys and
their treatments. Thanks for reading thru it all as I like to be very thorough.
How long should I leave the Epsom salt in the aquarium? I do every other day
water changes for him so I should be re-adding whatever amount of salt may be
lost with those changes? I mix the salt in the new water and dissolve before
adding. I usually do a half gallon change since he is in a 2.5 gal.
It has nothing in it aside from a HOB filter, a floating leaf and floating log.
Removed the moss balls since I added the Epsom salt.
<I'd put half a tsp. in this system and replace the percentage removed when you
do water changes>
For the metro and Prazi, I have PraziPro recommended to me a lot and Metroplex
is probably the easiest to get when it comes to that med. Do y'all recommend
both of these?
<Do search/read on WWM re both... these are good, useful medications, but not
items that should be used casually, continuously>
I talk mainly to other aquarists on Facebook and I feel people religiously flock
to Seachem there so I try to remain skeptic with everything.
<Skepticism, even a bit of cynicism I find healthy. Seachem as a co. is "the
real thing". Real products, real science>
For Mr Fin Rot I'm debating removing his current filter when I start the doxy
treatment and keep running it in a small tank and feeding it ammonia so I don't
lose my good bacteria OR putting the media in another aquarium for the moment.
Would the latter be a bad move if the fin rot is contagious?
<I wouldn't feed the system ammonia. The fish will provide plenty. In fact, I
would monitor ammonia and possibly place or filter through Zeolite to remove it>
I have 8 other betta tanks and a cichlid tank going right now.
I can always steal seeded media later too. Thomas Labs recommends a water change
before adding each new treatment of doxy (which would be daily) so I am ok
leaving his tank temporarily without the cycled media that is probably going die
<I do agree w/ this regimen. I'd likely treat every three days and do the water
change outs right before then>
Thanks for the help, I really do appreciate it. WWM has been very inspiring and
a tremendous source of info for me all these years.
<Am very glad for this. You and other petfish friends are what we endeavor for.
Questions for 2 Bettas
Hey WWM, I am a super long time reader of 10 years. I love reading thru your
site and have learned a lot since I first came across your site. I have a hobby
of buying sick betta fish on occasion and helping them recover. I have a pretty
good success rate and have helped about 10 recover, but I have 2 I have been
working on who aren't getting better.
My first fellow is a double tail I got 2 weeks ago w/ swim bladder issues.
He is constipated and has only pooped a few meager bits since I've had him.
He spends his time floating at the surface, sometimes on his side, and hiding
behind the filter. He does eat and has a normal betta appetite. He isn't really
bloated much. I have fasted him, I have fed him daphnia (which in the past makes
my Bettas poop when they can't go), I have done Epsom salt baths. He gets a
water change every other day due to the tank size.
Nothing is helping. I have only done Epsom salt baths twice. Going thru WWM I
see you suggest instead to add directly to the tank, which I have been hesitant
about because I have seen people warn against that. He is in a 2.5 gal hospital
tank right now. Do you think this would be more beneficial than baths, and how
much should I add, and for how long? Or should I try something else?
<If it were me, mine, I would go ahead w/ the direct addition of Epsom Salt here
(half a tsp. replaced when you change out water), and likely dose w/
Metronidazole and likely Praziquantel... to cover all microbial, parasitic, worm
My next fish is a Petco-version of a black orchid betta that I got at the end of
the October. He had been there for a while with some nasty fin rot.
In the past I have been able to treat aggressive fin rot with Maracyn and
Maracyn 2. This rot will not go away no matter what I do. I have tried Maracyn,
Kanaplex, daily water changes, Microbe Lift Artemiss, and Methylene blue baths
and swabbing the blue directly on his fins. He hasn't had any antibiotics since
November. The next thing I am trying is Doxycycline from Thomas Labs. Initially
the rot stopped after 2 rounds of Maracyn, but since came back and has only
either slowed, or stopped for a bit and returned. This fish hasn't had any
regrowth. The tail is almost gone and I fear body rot and death. My next step
would be to take him to an actual fish vet, however I can't find one near me who
won't charge over
$200 for the initial visit. He is in a cycled 3 gallon. I do believe the doxy is
going to kill the beneficial bacteria, right?
<Might set nitrifiers back, yes>
Anything else I can do to save him should doxy fail?
<Yes; I would add a good deal (like a couple teaspoons of aquarium salt
(artificial SeaSalt would be better/best) and a pro-rated dose of Metronidazole
Also neither fish has any tank mates. The only other living things in their
tanks is some Marimo moss balls from Aquatic Arts.
<These I'd remove; the salt may work the moss woe>
Thank you for your time and advice!
<Thank you for your efforts. Bob Fenner>
Re: Questions for 2 Bettas
Thank you so much, Bob. I'm going to put some Epsom salt in my constipated boy's
tank today and then look into the other medications. I'm concerned for my boy
with fin rot because yesterday I noticed some fungus or what I think is fungus
on his fins but I tried to stay positive and ignored it and gave him his water
change as usual.
<Aye; w/o sampling (and often culture) it is near impossible to guess what
group of organisms are/may be involved here. And hence effective treatments>
But this morning it has returned and it's probably going to get worse... I'm
really worried that he's not going to make it with the way this fungus is
<The salt use should help; at least forestall worsening>
His Doxycycline from Thomas Labs should arrive in the mail today so he will be
started on it when I get home. He does still eat and greets me but spends most
of his time resting on leaves.
<Eating is a very good sign>
I attached a bad pic of him from yesterday where you can see a dot of white
'fungus' on the tiny strand of tail fin in the middle (the tank is acrylic and
water spots won't go away so please ignore that). That little piece of his tail
has since shriveled away. Again thanks for any help!!
<Yeah; the "fungus" could be many things... even just body mucus from...
Do stay positive and keep us in the loop. BobF>
Re: Zoas and regal angel dislodging but not eating them
Thanks for your reply Bob. Over here in the UK Palythoa, Palys are sold under
that name with variety next ,e.g. Paly purple death. 'Non Palythoa' tend to be
sold as 'Zoa space monster' for example.
<Ahh, so... "Zoa" refers to just members of the genus Zoanthus? Perhaps other
The regal angel seems to know the difference somehow! I will try gluing the Zoas
i have left into crevices but like yourself, I'm not hopeful of success. Thank
you and the crew for your invaluable help to fellow hobbyists including myself.
Merry Christmas and have a happy new year, Toby.
<And to/for you and yours Toby. BobF>
Re: High ph and low kh 12/24/19
I've heard that high kh water will crash and then rebound back up if you try
to lower its ph, but dont remove its kh.
<Mmm; well; depends on what (chemical species) are elevating pH... once
buffering at a given (pH) level is diminished/reduced, pH may drop
If I use ph down along with the ph and kh increasing buffer will the ph
<Likely so... you could ask the chemical composition from your municipal
supplier, or have it checked out by an independent lab... or do a "assay"
yourself (which is what I'd do), and mix up all, let stand for a few days
(in a chemically inert container).>
I want to lower the ph from 9.6 to 8.5, not just keep it from going past
<I understand the first, and barring the addition of something w/ a higher
pH, it should not go higher. BobF>
Zoas and regal angel dislodging but not eating them
Hi, i have an adult regal angel and recently tried a few different
colored Zoas in my tank with him. He leaves all my LPS alone. He does
rip the superglued Zoas from their frag plugs but does not eat them.
When they are sat on the sand he largely ignores them only occasionally
showing interest. He is well fed, and i can see this may not work. I was
encouraged as he ignores similar sized Palythoa.
<Interesting... What genus of Zoanthids are you referring to as "Zoas"?
Palythoa are Zoanthids>
I can see he will be a pain with Zoas but the fun (?) for him seems to
be ripping them from the frag plug. My question is, is there a more
secure way to bond a Zoa frag to a plug, or do Zoas hold better onto
rocks with their more contoured surface?
<I suspect that this Angel will continue pull at, otherwise destroy
these "Zoas" no matter how they are attached>
If he could not dislodge them it might be a start and i cannot return
these to my LFS, thanks for any advice, Toby.
<I myself would try other groups of Cnidarians. Bob Fenner>
Re: Best Antibiotic for Fin Rot in Hard Water?
Dear WetWebMedia Crew,
Apologies for the late reply I have been out of town a long time.
I chickened out on using Kanamycin because it once wiped out a newly established
bio filter in my experience, and used Erythromycin based on the advice of a
local fish store who swore it worked really well for them.
Of course I did not read that it is only effective against gram-positive
bacteria and not gram-negative, which is most fin rot infections.
So now the silver dollar has lost most of his dorsal and anal fins, and his tail
fin has a big semicircular cut out of it with a black margin. There may also be
erosion of the skin on the base of the tail but it is hard to
tell. Another silver dollar has also acquired a semicircular cut out of his
tail, but otherwise none of the other fish have fin problems.
If I have a mature bio filter, would kanamycin wipe it out?
<It shouldn't, if used correctly, but there's always a risk with any antibiotic.
The ideal situation is to remove the filter media to a bucket of water, ideally
with a bubbler to keep it aerated. Then, use Zeolite in the filter for the
period while you're using the antibiotic. Zeolite removes ammonia directly. It's
inexpensive (often sold as "ammonia remover" in pet shops) and does the job
adequately well. Once the antibiotics are done, remove the Zeolite and put the
filter media back.>
I recently added a second canister filter to the aquarium with bio media from
another tank but the original one has had a biofilter for almost a year now.
<See above. If all else fails, isolate the media from one filter as described
above, but leave the other running. So long as ammonia levels stay at zero, the
antibiotic isn't doing any harm; but if there is a
crisis, you know what to do (i.e., use Zeolite) and the other filter will be
safe and ready to use when you're done. Normally, antibiotics are broken down
within a day or two of use, so waiting a day or so, and doing a 25-50% water
change, is all you need to do before connecting up the biological filter.>
Thank you for everything,
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>
High ph and low kh 12/23/19
My tap water is ph 9.6, the official listed value on
the water department website is 9-9.5. It's buffered to this
level by soda ash.
<? Am wondering why the pH is raised so high by your municipal dept. And
using sodium carbonate for the purpose. Do you know?>
The kh is low, 4 degrees on a liquid kh test and .2 on a conductivity
<... am surprised that the agency wouldn't use/avail themselves of
calcium compounds... to save their plumbing?>
Is there any way to raise the kh without raising the ph?
<Yes; you can/could simple sodium bicarbonate (Arm & Hammer and such
baking soda will do) along/WITH an acid buffer (DO THIS outside the
aquarium; i.e. pre-mix and store such made up water in advance of
introduction/use in biological systems). Alternatively... oh, I see you
The water is intended for Tanganyikan cichlids.
Is 100% RO water with buffer and salt the only option to make this water
<THIS is one way; and perhaps the preferred for your use... Have you
read Neale Monk's piece on making/using "Rift Lake Salts" on WWM?:
Do please do so.>
Or is there some mix of tap and ro water plus buffer that will work?
<Would depend on other ionic make up in your source water. Definitely
worth investigating, trying out various Calcium and Carbonate,
Bicarbonate buffers IF you're using a bunch of water. IF only a few tens
of gallons a month, I'd mix the RO and Neale's salt-blend>
Thanks for any information.
<Glad to share. Bob Fenner>
Re: High ph and low kh 12/23/19
The water department website says the ph is raised to prevent leeching
from old (lead) pipes.
<Ah yes; then they should be working on switching them out>
I will try the buffer method, the tank is 65 gallons and I would like to
change 25 gallons per week.
Seems like a lot of ro water but I dont know, maybe that is a reasonable
amount to have to use weekly.
<Some folks advocate for smaller amounts more frequently. I change out
20-25% of my freshwater in my systems weekly. BobF>
Dart goby stkg. 12/21/19
Good day crew, quick question for you.
<Good day Nicole>
I currently have 4 zebra dart gobies (Ptereleotris zebra) and would like to add
another 5 to make a bigger school. Is it possible? Thanks in advance
<It is possible and personally, I like how they look and behave in groups; The
problem here is that you already have 4 that have established territories and
may fight with the new comers... Still, I would give them a try, provided that
you rearrange decor a bit and introduce them at night with the lights off. A
very important thing to consider is that the new school must have been
previously quarantined and stress free before joining the older ones. Hope you
find this helpful. Cheers. Wil.>
Re: Platy swim bladder problem
and one male swordtail (who never tried to mate with her, that I ever saw-his
trio of ladies kept him busy enough, I think.)
<Mmm; can cross breed w/ platies>
Yes, I knew they could - it wasn't a big deal to me if they did, this tank was
more for display than breeding (it's in my office at work.) Was mainly just
noting that I never saw any breeding activity between them; he didn't seem
interested in trying with her, he was always focused on the sword
<Young might have been consumed.>
Oh, definitely, with this bunch. Though not so much when they were
younger/smaller themselves; I did have a lot of fry survive early on, when the
female swords were younger/smaller. But now, they not only eat all their own
fry, they also follow the corys around when they're spawning and eat all the
eggs as soon as the female places them.
<Okay... I'd advise placing "spawning medium" (artificial or live "grass"...
there are a few varieties; gone over on WWM on the Aquatic Plants subweb>
The tank actually is heavily planted, with masses of Java and Christmas moss,
floating Salvinia minima, thick mats of Java ferns at one end, and a stand of
bushy Limnophila aromatica mixed with two varieties of Cabomba in the middle.
Even with all that, plus a tumble of stones with gaps that fry could hide in -
they generally still are all consumed.
I'll see 10 or 12
of them hiding in the moss or other plants the day or so after they're born,
then it'll be down to 4-5 the next day, and then maybe once in 2-3 months a
single fry might survive past snack-size. The female swords especially are
relentless - they'll push their way in among the plants and remain still,
waiting for fry to show themselves. Like some kind of miniature grouper, lurking
in a reef cave. You'd think they don't get fed regularly....
<A few things might have occurred here; false pregnancy, resorption...
Good to either use large breeding nets/traps and/or move apparently "pregnant"
females well in advance.>
Sorry, poor explanation on my part of why I moved her. It's a long tank, and
when the swords start zipping around (male/female courting, or females
displaying/chasing for pecking order) I didn't think it would be a great place
for a fish who is struggling with buoyancy issues and potentially labor/birthing
issues as well. Where I was moving her to was just a dark, quiet place where she
wouldn't be bothered by the swords if (when) they got too rambunctious; I wasn't
really concerned about saving fry (if there
were any; I tended to think as you suggest, false pregnancy or reabsorption.) If
she'd been giving birth under normal circumstances, I wouldn't have felt any
need to move her - I'd expect she'd have gone to an out of the way corner on her
own, like the swords typically do when they're birthing.
<I would have you read Neale's piece on salt use:
and consider either the addition of Epsom salt or its use in a more concentrated
bath/lavage... in an attempt to "loosen" what might be inside this fish. Please
do report back your actions and observations. Bob Fenner>
Many thanks, and I will try that and see what happens.
I will also completely date myself by saying that my first tank was a
slate-bottom Metaframe, *grin*.
<<Wowzah. My generation!>>
I was out of the hobby for decades, though, and am only recently back in; so I
do still remember (and use) all the old standbys (salt, meth blue, malachite
green, potassium permanganate, Epsom, Merbromin.)
<<I do recall>>
Can snip this next part from public posting if you like, because it's sort of a
tangent - but I had seen the piece on salt use, because I had also read through
all the platy pages before posting. I will respectfully and carefully venture to
disagree on one point from one of the platy posts, though - which was that salt
is ineffective for any bacterial infection (IIRC it was Neale who responded that
someone would have to be an idiot to use salt for anything bacterial; the
context was in relation to fin rot, I believe.)
<<In this case, I side w/ you; have experienced salt use being effective
for apparently bacterial issues. Other sources state this as well.>>
I do agree that salt is likely ineffective for internal bacterial infections -
it's probably only beneficial from the aspect that he also cites in the uses
(osmoregulation). And I agree that it's also not effective for all types of
bacteria - Streptococcus (for example) survives in saltwater just fine.
But I've successfully used aquarium-salt baths to treat external Columnaris
lesions (I do also keep swords and guppies at home), when I didn't have anything
else to hand. Later also found this study showing that a 4% salt solution had a
measurable effect on F. columnare viability in a lab setting.
(it also shows that the 4% salt solution did not reduce mortality in infected
fish, but posits that the bacteria is protected by the fish's mucus layer. Which
makes sense; infection occurring below that layer, the bacteria probably isn't
ever coming into direct contact with the salt solution. But, Columnaris can also
be one of the many potential causes of fin rot in freshwater fish; so in that
case, salt potentially could be
Another study seems to show that salt is potentially also effective against
Aeromonas (yet another potential fin rot causative agent) and Edwardsiella; from
this Auburn study done on channel catfish (which kind of also puts a kink in the
conventional wisdom that non-scaled fish don't tolerate salt
http://www.int-res.com/articles/dao/21/d021p171.pdf This one is
interesting because they conclude by saying they aren't sure themselves what the
real benefit was; including that it might only be physiologically beneficial on
the fish itself (again, likely improved osmoregulation).
The advice is still sound for the intended audience - most people aren't going
to bother to delve into wheres and whys and hows like I do, not going to
differentiate one bacterial vector from another (most also don't understand the
difference between gram-positive and -negative, and why an antibiotic that
targets gram-positive isn't going to work for a gram-negative like Aeromonas.)
Mostly just saying that if someone does claim that salt helped a particular
bacterial-vector condition, they might not be wrong or misinformed. Or an idiot.
<<Assuredly Neale Monks is not the latter. I don't recall his reasoning, but he
and I have chatted about this years back. BobF>>
Re: Platy swim bladder problem 12/20/19
<<Assuredly Neale Monks is not the latter. I don't recall his reasoning, but he
and I have chatted about this years back. BobF>>
No, no, definitely was not suggesting he was - I respect his knowledge and
experience, and have been educated and informed by many of his past answers
I was only quoting the response that anyone who used salt for bacterial would
have to be an idiot. Meaning - I don't think anyone who does try/use salt for
external bacterial is misinformed or an idiot - because I have seen some
evidence that it can be effective, and I don't think *I'm* an idiot.
[But of course, I also might not be completely objective when it comes to
self-evaluation.... :) ]
<I consider that there is some subjective element/s to all observations,
thinking. Cheers, B>
Coral identification 12/19/19
I need your help about this coral identification
<Appears to be a Faviid of some sort (Family Faviidae); may be able to guess
further to genus if you can give me an idea of the diameter of the polyps (in
mm.). Bob Fenner>
Platy swim bladder problem 12/19/19
<Happy holidays Melita>
I have found many answers here in the past (thank you!), but now
have a situation where I'm not sure how best to proceed.
Apologies in advance if I'm providing too much information, I
figure always better too much than not enough.
I've had a female platy for about a year and a half now. She was
normal and healthy for most of the first year. This is what she
looked like when I first got her, around August of 2018. Not
full-grown yet, and didn't seem to arrive pregnant (as most
female livebearers do) either.
<Very nice; fully mature female>
I'd kept her with a pair of peppered corys and
trio of female swordtails, and one male swordtail (who never
tried to mate with her, that I ever saw - his trio of ladies
kept him busy enough, I think.)
<Mmm; can cross breed w/ platies>
[Since this is going to be mostly history to where we are now I
don't think water parameters are or were a factor - but for the
record she was in a mature, well-planted tank. pH 7.8-8.2, temp
74, gH >180, kH >180 and maintained with crushed coral in the
canister filter, am 0, nitrites 0, nitrates 10-20, 25% water
<Good values, maintenance>
The only issue I've had in this tank was a case of external
Columnaris on one of the swords (white lesion, treated with
hydrogen peroxide direct-swab since it was near the tail,
followed up with a course of Nitrofuran/Kanaplex in the tank.
This also happened months before there were ever any issues with
the platy. Don't know about the UK, but here in the US it seems
like Columnaris has become frightfully common with livebearers.
<It is... and has been, "cyclically"... every few years off and
on for decades. Many folks cite, speculate that the
international import may be a root cause (difference in water
quality, stress...), and quality of
domestic water, and loss of genetic strength in lines....>
Enough so that I've even been seeing them shipped in yellow
water rather than blue - an indication of
Nitrofuran in the water, rather than Methylene Blue.]
<Could/might well be>
She would periodically cycle getting a little larger in the
belly and then smaller, but if she ever produced any offspring I
never saw it (didn't see her birth any fry, never saw her hiding
or getting particularly stroppy with the others (like the female
swords do when they're getting close to birthing), didn't see
any offspring with colors like hers or that didn't look like
regular swordtail in fin/body shape, etc.)
<Young might have been consumed.>
This would be a 'fatter' period for her, in February 2019.
One day in June of 2019, she started head-standing, and her
vent had also become rather prominent.
<Yes; the vent area often becomes clear/er ahead (days) of
parturition; one can sometimes see the eyes of young through
this area at the time>
It coincided with feeding the tank a treat of frozen brine
shrimp (though I didn't make the connection until later.) I
removed her to a quarantine, someplace quiet away from the other
females - in case she was pregnant and having trouble birthing.
<Okay... I'd advise placing "spawning medium" (artificial or
live "grass"... there are a few varieties; gone over on WWM on
the Aquatic Plants subweb>
By the next morning she was oriented normally again. No fry. I
kept her in the quarantine for a couple more days, but as she
was acting completely like her normal self (wanting to be fed,
pooping normally, etc), I went ahead and put her back in the
<A few things might have occurred here; false pregnancy,
to either use large breeding nets/traps and/or move apparently
"pregnant" females well in advance.>
Things were fine for some time after that, but - if there was an
occasion where she could scarf down 'extra' food (such as frozen
brine shrimp), she'd end up in the head-standing position again
for several hours to half a day after. I figured - overfull
stomach pressing on swim bladder.
<Might be; and/or gas generation from the food>
This was her in August 2019, still normal most of the time.
She'd always been a bit of a chow-hound, even more than most
I'd read (from other places) that head-standing in platys was
basically a death sentence; but since she was still swimming
normally, eating normally, pooping normally, and so on, I just
let her be.
Sometime in September, the head-standing got to be a constant
thing. She would position herself under something (plant leaf,
decoration) to stay horizontal and away from the surface. But
the female swords decided that there must be something wrong
with her, and they started picking on her constantly (more than
just the normal female pecking-order squabbles.)
They meant business, so I had to move her.
I moved her back into quarantine, and gave her a week's course
of Nitro/Kanaplex just in case it was due to some kind of
infection. Didn't make any difference.
The only other thing I could find about this problem was that
she might be egg-bound.
<Yes; or possibly have decomposing young inside her>
So, I went and got a male platy (same kind) and another female
(so he wouldn't be focused exclusively on her), both half her
size so she could assert herself easily if either one of them
bothered her too much.
Put them into a planted 20-gal tank.
She was still positioning herself under anything she could.
After a month, things were no better - and she was going
downhill from the additional stress of having a male trying to
court her. Started showing signs of edema/dropsy - not to the
point of her scales pine-coning or pop-eye, just swollen and
I removed her to quarantine again, and this time I thought I was
going to lose her. She was tail-curling, like she was in pain
and trying to reach the painful spot with her mouth. I gave her
an Epsom bath in a smaller container for 30 min.s, and then put
<Aquarium salt I take it, not Epsom>
and meth blue into the quarantine (just hoping to make her a
little more comfortable) and left her overnight, fully expecting
to find her dead the next morning.
But, she wasn't. She was much less swollen, had made a
black-looking, somewhat larger than normal poop, and she now had
a red spot on her side (the side she'd been curling toward.) A
day or so later it also looked like she had some bruising under
her skin, on both sides.
She didn't eat for nearly a week after this. The quarantine I
had her in was bare-bottom, just a heater and airstone - I was
taking her out and doing full water-changes every day or at most
every other day (still expecting she'd either start getting
better or go farther downhill, figuring either way it was just
temporary lodging.) At one point I was considering getting out
the clove oil - but she let me know she wasn't done.
She had also had some dorsal and caudal fin damage (from
floating to the surface, drying out), so I'd coated my hand with
StressCoat and picked her up to put her back in the quarantine
after the water-change (easiest way to get it onto her where she
needed it.) She surprised me with her strength, fighting; she
was not at all hesitant to let me know how much she didn't
appreciate being handled. She was plenty feisty when trying to
catch her to do the water-changes as well.
When she started eating again I tried a few other things with
her - a course of Triple Sulfa, I think I also tried her with
some Ciprofloxacin (in the water, I didn't try medicated food
because she isn't seeing/eating food right away and I know it
loses its effectiveness quickly in the water.) No change, for
better or worse.
And now here we are in December, two months later - still no
change. She spends the majority of her time positioned
underneath something to stay down (the heater, or tube-caves I
made for her out of an opaque plastic bottle), and when she's
not under something, she's tail-up unless she's actively
swimming. She eats and poops normally. And still has the red
spot, this is a picture from yesterday:
At this point, I don't know what else I should do for her.
Set her up by herself in a 10-gallon with plants and other
'soft' things to position herself under, I guess? She doesn't
tend to swim around a whole lot now, I think anything larger
(tank-wise) would be sort of pointless. It doesn't seem like
much of a life to me, but given how actively/strongly she still
fights being caught or restrained in any way, I'd also say she
isn't 'done' in her own mind, definitely hasn't given up.
Thought I'd pose this one to you all, see if there is something
else you would suggest.
Thanks in advance,
<I would have you read Neale's piece on salt use:
and consider either the addition of Epsom salt or its use in a
more concentrated bath/lavage... in an attempt to "loosen" what
might be inside this fish. Please do report back your actions
and observations. Bob Fenner>
Re: can I keep 2m 2f dwarf gourami in 80 litres?
Thanks for your helpful reply. I was able to get a better shot of the paler fish
last night. Can you tell whether it’s male or female?
<Do think this is a female, on account of its more rounder shape and
not-tapering dorsal fin; however, will admit its dorsal fin is not the classic
blunt curve of females, even if not really long and pointy either. So would
assume a female, but wouldn't be surprised if it turned out to be a male! Not
completely helpful, I know, but the two fish will know -- and if the male is
largely ignoring this fish, perhaps scooting her away from his 'patch', then I'd
be fairly confident she's a female. Cheers, Neale.>
Laying aquarium on side and resealing?
I have what may be a bit of a strange question for you that I hope you
don’t mind entertaining! I’ve been in the market for a used aquarium
with a footprint of 36”x24” and have slowly been losing hope… Do you
think its silly to consider finding a used aquarium and laying it on its
side to then take apart and reseal with the foot print I want?
<Nope; not silly at all>
For example a standard 65 gallon on its side would give me the 36”x24”
foot print, if I was to remove the new 36”x24” ‘top’ pane and cut it
down to 36”x18” then resealed it onto what was the original topside of
the aquarium, I’d end up with a 36”x24”x18” (LxWxH) 65 gallon aquarium.
Obviously this is assuming I find a non tempered tank, worst case
scenario I smash that 36”x24” and order a 36”x18” pane to do the same
<Why non-tempered? Cutting carefully through the existing seams (with
single edge razor blades assumedly) should allow you to re-use the
Any thoughts? Obviously I could have custom tank ordered but lets just
say I’m budget and DIY inclined ;)
Thanks so much,
<I'd try this adventure out... cutting the top frame off, starting the
seam cut through at the old top...
Re: Whether or not to moonlight?... 12/16/19
Moonlight follow-up question…
The only practical place to install a moonlight at the top of my 220 gallon reef
is right in front of the overflow. My question is... will I (inadvertently) just
be 'luring' all of my copepods and amphipods to their
death, courtesy of a trip directly to the skimmer if they try to swim
<Possibly they will go through the overflow, hard to tell. Do you have copepods
in your macro algae sump?... I’d try to establish them there, they will grow
quite well and only a part will reach the main tank to constantly feed your
Can I keep 2m 2f dwarf gourami in 80 litres?
This may turn out to be a cautionary tale...
I have just received three dwarf gourami that I ordered online from a good
shop (or what used to be a good shop, anyway), with the request that I
needed 1 male and 2 females. I already have one female in my tank.
I'm attaching photos of two of the fish they have sent me. I hope you can
see clearly enough: they are still in the bag they came in. I fear that the
two coloured ones are both males. I'm certain the stripy one is, but am
hoping that the reddish one that isn't stripy is a female, because otherwise
I'll have two males and only two females in this tank, which I'm worried
will lead to the males fighting.
<The red/blue striped one is indeed a male. Females are harder to identify.
They are normally silvery, with faint blue/red stripes, and tend to have a
more rounded abdomen and, usually, shorter dorsal fins without the tapering
end seen on the males. While it's difficult to be sure, I'd suggest your
second, plainer specimen is indeed a female. Behaviour usually makes for
certainty: males will be more inquisitive and ultimately more territorial.>
They are going into my quarantine tank for the time being. The main tank is
80 litres, heavily planted, and currently contains one female gourami, 6
ember tetras and some cherry shrimp. The water parameters are:
Ammonia 0 (it's a mature system)
Nitrate 0 (I didn't believe it either, but I tested multiple times. I
conclude that the duckweed is outgrowing the nitrate production in the tank.
<Might well be.>
The other plants grow pretty fast too, as there is plenty of light.) KH, GH
very low. The water here is very soft, pH around 6-7.
<Which suits Dwarf Gouramis well.>
Can you tell me whether both these fish are male?
If you need better photos let me know and I'll try again.
<Really need to see the body shape and the dorsal fin shape of the paler
specimen to be sure.>
I guess if they are both males I'll have to put one into the main tank,
leave the other in the smaller tank until I can rehome him.
<You are right to be dubious about more than one male Dwarf Gourami in 80
litres, and even kept as pairs, the females can be pestered, even damaged.
Multiple females per male is the ideal, because these polygamous fish don't
form stable pairs in the same way cichlids do. After spawning, females are
forcefully driven out of the male's territory!>
Thanks again for your sage advice,
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>
Salt water fish tank problems; cycling/env.
My name is Mason,
<Hello Mason, Wil here.>
I have a salt water fish tank that has been problematic from the start (July
2019) despite everything we have tried to fix it, but our fish keep getting sick
<Did you cycle this tank?>
We started with a 29 gallon bio-cube tank some live rock, sand and salt water
from one specific store.
We then found another store where we had gotten a watchman gobi <Y> and a royal
gramma to start our tank.
<These fish are not adequate to cycle a tank>
About 10 days later the gramma passed away.
<Did you quarantine the fish?>
After further water testing trace amounts of copper was found in the water. We
then called the original store and found out that their live rock supply is
mostly from broken down tanks.
<Mmm… I see>
We immediately removed the old rock and treated the tank with Triton Detox
(recommended from the new fish store) and a poly filter for after treatment. We
have had weekly to bi-weekly water testing all of which the parameters have been
<Could you please send us the current test readings?>
We do bi-weekly water changes and test the salinity often, we have a protein
skimmer and heater in the tank that is set to 79.3 degrees. The problem that is
still occurring is that fish keep passing away. The watchman gobi is still alive
but since the first royal gramma we have lost 2 more and 2 bi-colored blennies,
2 peppermint shrimp, 1 tail spot blend, 1 carpenter wrasse, 1 cleaner shrimp, 1
coral beauty and countless Nerite snails all of which have lasted for 3 weeks
then perished. We had a Banggai cardinal fish that was returned to the store
because we thought maybe he was being a bully and put in a Talbots damsel. The
damsel we have now is currently growing some kind of fungus on it and we really
can not figure out what is happening to the tank, the parameters are always good
the salinity is fine, no one is being a bully. Our current tank occupants are
the watchman gobi, pistol shrimp, Talbots damsel, 2 turbo snails hermit crabs
and Nerite snails. We also have coral that is doing fine, growing and
flourishing. Basically we are at an impasse and have invested a lot of time and
money into this tank and its been stressful and we are about ready to give up.
<You should have invested more in reading ahead of buying fish.>
We recently tried General Cure by API but there is no change. We have a carbon
filter and a poly filter in the tank currently. I have attached a photo of the
damsel. If there is anything else that we can do please let us know
<I recommend you stop adding new livestock and do a good reading, please start
with the following links and related
<You are welcome. Wil.>
Re: Hello Question about acrylic crazing or seam failure.
First I would like to thank you for sharing the information with me. It has been
Do you recommend to seal all the tank with Weldon just to be on the safe side?
If yes, what kind of Weldon should I use?
<I would not randomly apply this solvent... ONLY where the joint is whited
The #16 of Weldon or equivalent is my choice in terms of low viscosity; ability
to seep into the joint. You may need to flip the tank over so the solvent can
more easily soak into the space. IF there's a concern for leaking, DO read on
WWM re installing triangular or quarter stock in all seams>
The tank is dry and hasn't been operational, so I was thinking of taking care of
the maintenance before I pour water in it.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
giant fish in a not so giant pond
Hai, Can I grow a 1.25 feet giant gourami with Alligator gar and
iridescent sharks in a cement pond of 5 feet length,3.5 feet
width and 3.25 feet height..There was only iridescent sharks and
Alligator gar in that tank. I bought the above mentioned gourami 2 days
ago...Is it possible to live them together in a tank...
<Your pond measures about 56 cubic feet, or just under 1600 litres
(roughly 418 US gallons) assuming it is filled to the very top. While
the fish would probably do okay in there for quite a while, a lot
depends on the filtration and how big the fish get. Alligator Gars
(Atractosteus spatula) reach up to 3 m in length, though 1.8 m (around 6
ft) is more typical.
These wouldn't even fit in your pond, much less survive. So a juvenile
might be okay, but an adult would not. Iridescent Sharks (Pangasianodon
hypophthalmus) will get to at least 90-100 cm in length (around 3 ft)
when fully grown. Again, adults this size would be a bit of a squeeze in
your pond, but juveniles should be okay for a year or so. To stress: the
only reason these two species are available is because they are
commercially farmed as food, with their large size and fast growing rate
being major selling points. Ironically, the Giant Gourami (Osphronemus
goramy) is the one species ideally suited to a tropical pond this size,
and should actually do quite well, despite being the latest addition to
your collection of giant fish. Again, while it's a food fish, at up to
45 cm (about 1.5 ft) when fully grown, an average adult is a do-able
aquarium fish, even if rather demanding. Cheers, Neale.>
Worms in my tank, FW 12/12/19
I have worms in my tank & I’m not too sure what kind they are & how to get rid
of them so if you could please help me that would be great. I will attach some
pictures of the worms. I have 2 Bettas in my tank & I don’t want anything to
happen to them
<I wouldn't be (overly) concerned with these small (highly likely benign
<Do read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/fwwormidf.htm
and the linked files (in blue) above. Bob Fenner>
Help with German Blue Ram 12/12/19
Hi. I have a planted 20 gallon tall with seven cardinal tetras, four Cory
cats, five serpae tetras, two Otos, and one ram.
<Right. Couple things to point out here. The first is that while
most Corydoras prefer cool water (72-77 F) Cardinals are happy at middling
to high (say, 77-82 F) and Rams definitely need warmth (82-86 F).
Serpae Tetras are tough as old boots and won't really care either way, but
they're also psychotic little fin-nippers -- in other words, their
ecological niche includes biting the scales and fins of larger fish. So
while Serpae Tetras look lovely and will thrive on benign neglect, they
aren't the safest community fish. They also have an intense pecking order
(watch them at feeding time!) and small groups may turn on themselves.
They're best used as low maintenance colour for planted tanks where a school
of 12 or more are kept alone to complement fancy-pants Amano-style
Two seachem tidal HOB filters with sponge, bio rings, and no carbon.
Water parameters seem good. 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and about 20 nitrate.
water temp is kept at 78-79 F.
<See above re: temperature. There's really no happy medium here, unless you
happen to be keeping Corydoras sterbai, one of the very few Corydoras truly
happy at the high temperatures Cardinals and Rams require.>
I do about 30% water changes every week treated with Seachem Prime. Only
issue I fight with is that the ph is around 8.
<Which is, as you likely understand, not optimal. Cardinals, and especially
Rams, require soft water. A high pH indicates high hardness.
Remember, pH isn't actually that important -- most Amazonian fish can thrive
anywhere between pH 6 and 8 -- but hardness does matter. Unless you are
actively reducing hardness, diddling around with the pH via chemical buffers
is not only pointless but actually risky, because the pH will vary over
My ram is showing this white spot on its fin and I'm not sure if its fungal
or not. I've moved him into a cycled 10 gallon QT with two sponge filters,
plastic plants for cover, and the same water parameters as the 20 gallon.
No other fish in the 20 gallon has any symptoms or sickness.
<Do see above, but also read about this species; start here:
But also have a peruse of our previous emails on the subject, here:
Cut a long story short, Rams are 'juiced' with antibiotics by breeders to
keep them healthy once they get to the shops, but as the antibiotics wear
off, if the Rams are exposed to the wrong environmental conditions, their
health outcomes get steadily worse with time. You are BY NO MEANS the only
person in this position, and in fact most Rams bought in pet shops are lucky
to survive 6 months. Many not even that.>
I first thought it was ich so I raised the temp in the QT to 85 and treated
with ich-x, following the instructions with daily dosing and water changes,
with no difference in the spot after 5 days. I did a larger water change and
after letting him rest for a week, I dosed according to the directions with
API General Cure and E.M. Erythromycin. Again it had no effect. After some
more daily water changes I began dosing with Seachem Paraguard. I'm now on
day 3 of Paraguard and not seeing much of a difference. I'm contemplating
aquarium salt as well for treatment, but unsure how well rams handle the
<Rams will handle the old salt/heat method just fine, as will Cardinals.
The 2 gram/litre dose used is trivial, and most if not all fish handle this
better than the more modern medications such as copper and formalin. The
downside of course is salt/heat takes longer to work and may require a
longer duration to completely eliminate Whitespot. It's less effective
against Velvet, but will work if combined with complete darkness (e.g., a
blanket over the tank).>
He is eating well, not constipated, and mobile in the tank. I attached the
best picture I could get to help aid in diagnosing the illness.
<The white blotch on the tail could be anything, including a Finrot-type
bacterial infection but also early Lymphocystis. The latter is untreatable
beyond optimising living conditions. There is some belief that
stress brings on Lymphocystis, at least so far as wild fish go.
Finrot should respond well to antibiotics.>
Thanks in advance.
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>
Coral Beauty Angelfish 12/11/19
We recently had a coral beauty angelfish become sick and die. We removed the
fish just as he died. Are you able to identify what the disease is from these
photos? It appeared to be white fuzz and fin rot since the side
fin deteriorated away.
<Does look like Lymphocystis, a virulent disease especially common in tanks
where fish are already stressed due to poor water quality, unfortunately it has
no cure, the only option is to improve the fish health through good nutrition
and vitamin supplements, in addition to maintaining pristine water conditions in
a stress-free tank.>
Thank you for any help!
<Most welcome. Wil.>
911 Betta Help 12/11/19
Hello WWM Crew,
20 gallon tall tank
<Mmm; Betta's are better kept in shallower/less deep systems... it's a haul to
make it to the surface to grab gulps of air>
Filtered and heated
CO2 day —airstone at night
Stock: albino bristle nosed pleco, 2 adfs, 1 mystery snail, 1 amano shrimp, half
moon dragon scale betta, sword tail
My betta has always had fin rot ever since I got him almost a year ago.
<? Unusual... are you sure this appearance is not some type of coloration of the
I have been able to keep it under control and keep it from progressing and had
it come and go. Never had regrowth I think but never done any treatments. Only
water changes every week and prime.
<This sounds like (it should be) a fine set up, maintenance program>
Last week I got my tank back in order after letting it go for two weeks where I
didn’t do water changes and run my CO2. I had my parameters fail and an algae
outbreak. Now that is cleaned up and my parameters are stable
again. I fed everything but did not really pay attention to how everything
looked. After I realized my bettas fins were destroyed and he had a white spot
on his fins.
<"A" as in a single spot I take it>
I quarantined him in a one gallon and did daily 50% water changes for a week
<Not a fan of this API product, nor Melaleuca for medicine period>
Things are not looking better and the white spot has grown. It’s not fuzzy just
white. His right eye is bulging and when taking pics I noticed his scales are a
golden shiny color. It’s not dusted but solid except for on his lower fin below
his body where it is dusted looking. His fins are shredded and crumpled down.
<... could this fish, system be infested w/ Velvet, Amyloodinium?>
After noticing this I couldn’t tell if it was velvet so I looked at the
swordtail which I added two months ago. He didn’t look like this when I got him
but is now covered in a dusting of gold shiny metallic. It was really hard to
get a picture of as he is constantly moving and the flash light has to reflect
on it just right. He is black with a blue hue in the right light and a metallic
silver eye normally. But now there is gold all over him in the right light you
<I would treat for Velvet>
First I want to address the betta. I think he has multiple problems, I’m not
sure what, I don’t know what to use to treat them, or in what order. It could be
bacterial, fungal, Velvet. He has the white spot, bulging right eye, and
shredded fins. He wants to live I can tell and is trying to hang in there. He is
eating again but wasn’t for the first few days of quarantine. He needs to be
medicated at this point and I think I need to make it the right moves or it will
progress to far before I can get to it.
<I would return this fish to the 20 (more stable) and treat all for (just)
Velvet for now... there are a few approaches; from depriving light to less-than
discriminate dyes and metal solutions. You may well have to remove the snails,
frogs to elsewhere, perhaps your plants (and run them through a dip/bath to
remove the dinoflagellates on returning)>
Please give me your insight with what you think all he has and what medicine as
well as brand names to use.
<I'd have you search, read re "Velvet" (for freshwater) of WWM, esp. reviewing
this list of medications by Neale Monks:
AND carefully pre- and re-reading the manufacturers information on use>
Pics below include:
<Both? You mention one, and a bowl for treatment. You provide an image of the
tank... am not a fan of round/smooth pebbles as substrate... Is the filter here
keeping ammonia, nitrite at 0.0 ppm? Nitrate under 20 ppm?>
Betta a month ago at his maintained fin rot state
<I see this>
Betta now with gold coloring on scales and dusting in lower fin
<Can't make out the gold dusting>
White spot on tail fin 7 days ago when moved into quarantine And it now Bulging
Sword tail gold dusting
<Again, not discernible (by me). Am going to ask Neale here to review all,
present his own response. Bob Fenner>
911 Betta Help /Neale
<<It is not obvious to me that the the Swordtail is sick at all. Velvet is
usually quite obvious (think: icing sugar) and infected fish almost always
'flash' (move rapidly) against rocks as if trying to scratch themselves.
Heavy ventilation of the gill covers is usually obvious too, because Velvet
infects the gills almost before anything else. Swordtails are moderately
demanding by community tank standards: they are active swimmers, so a tank
at least 2.5 ft, and ideally 3+ feet in length is surely essential. They despise
high temperatures, so best kept around 22-25 C (72-77 F) but no higher. Hard,
alkaline water is essential. Like other livebearers, they're sensitive to 'old'
water and prone to mysterious ailments, such as wasting away, in stuffy or
overstocked tanks. Your Betta just looks like a specimen with indifferent
genetics. Colouration is normal enough, just not uniform, and the raggedy edges
seem to be genetic, rather than the result of Finrot (which would tend to expose
fin rays that look like fine bones, as well as patches of white dead tissue and
pinkish, inflamed areas). I don't see obvious eye bulging, but if it's just the
one eye, that's most likely caused by an injury, and should go down by itself.
The use of Epsom Salt
can help to reduce swelling. A dose of 1-3 teaspoons per 5 gallons/20 litres
will do the trick. Note that Epsom Salt isn't the same thing as tonic, table,
sea or cooking salt. It can be purchased inexpensively online or via drugstores.
As for treating Velvet, commercial medications such as eSHa EXIT will do the
trick, but with livebearers, if they're all you're keeping, adding salt at a
dose of 2-5 gram/litre will do the job with less risk of stress. Indeed, marine
salt mix added to livebearer tanks has a mild tonic effect on these fish, even
the true freshwater ones like Swordtails, and can be used for some weeks without
risk. Cheers, Neale.>>
Ongoing Palythoa problems
Good morning crew,
<Good morning Nicole>
I have been scouring your site and I am sure my answer is there somewhere but I
just can't seem to find it.
To keep a long story short every few weeks for many years I will lose a small
patch (20-25 heads of thousands) of Palys to this brown jelly type stuff.
<These appear to be some type of sponge >
It will go away for a bit and then rear it's ugly head up again.
I am wondering if there is any one specific thing that causes this condition, or
could it be any number of factors and this is simply how Palys react to
something they don't like.
Of course I am hoping you can tell me that only one thing could be causing this
but I feel like most things in this hobby it won't be that simple.
Thank you in advance.
<Sponges live in almost all marine ecosystems, from the shallowest coral reefs
to the deepest, coldest parts of the ocean so, it is very easy that they have
adapted to your marine tank; they are filter feeders, not coral eaters, but
looks that they are suffocating your Zoas. I suggest to manually remove them; if
the rock (s) they are attached to, is (are) easy to take out of the tank, you
can remove them with a pair of tweezers or applying hydrogen peroxide directly
to the sponges.>
PS while I have your attention, any advice for getting a dart fish out of a deep
narrow overflow chamber? ��
<This happens at times and the best solution is to drain the overflow section
and try to introduce a narrow net attached to a pvc pipe or some other long
object in order to reach and catch the fish in only a few centimeters of water,
if access to the overflow is limited, you can try the same but with the net
attached to a flexible pipe or hose. Hope this helps. Cheers. Wil.>
Re: Ongoing Palythoa problems
Thank you for the reply.
Yes I do know about the sponges, they don't really concern me.
I am referring to my Palys turning brown and gooey and
<Ahh, ok... I thought you said this happens when sponges are
Maybe the photo isn't very clear. This has been going on long
before the sponges were present and often in colonies where
there are no/very little sponges.
Any idea what is causing my Palys to turn brown and gooey?
<May have to do with water chemistry / quality>
It will only happen to a small patch at a time, go away, only to
return again on a different patch of Palys.
I have attached 2 more photos that will hopefully show what is
going on more clearly.
<Thanks, I can see what you mean more clearly on your excellent
pix. Can you please tell me about your water levels (numbers)?>
Thanks again and wish me luck catching the dart fish! ��
<Good luck!... hopefully you take him out soon. Wil.>
Re: Ongoing Palythoa problems
Thanks again. The dart fish actually ended up being super easy
to catch; for lack of anywhere to hide he swam straight into my
net. Him and his 3 buddies were just added to the display tank
<Ahh... good, perhaps you can block or limit the overflow slits
a bit so that this won’t happen again, slender fish like your
dart fish can easily pass through them.>
So back to the Paly problem, I have only recently started
testing/dosing after 6 years in the hobby and have attached
photos of my logs.
<Okay, let’s see>
My salinity is always at 1.026. I really don't see it being
parameters though as this has been going on forever and only
seems to affect a very small portion of Palys at a time.
<I don’t see readings re HPO4 and Nitrate... do you dose
I know I have some allelopathy issues in the tank due to an
unusual mix of corals I introduced before I knew what
allelopathy was, so this is my suspicion.
<You may be right here>
I still find it odd that it only affects tiny patches of Palys
at a time though.
<Is there any other Cnidarian life in the tank? Maybe nearby the
I was just hoping maybe there was only one possible cause for
Palys turning brown and gooey but I guess that is not the case.
Thanks again for your help
Re: Ongoing Palythoa problems
He jumped over the overflow, no way he would fit through the
slits. Luckily the tank itself is pretty well covered.
I don't have a phosphate test kit yet, I started testing
nitrates in the last few days, you will notice nitrite/nitrate
readings on the last few logs on the far right.
<You're right, I missed this.>
Nitrites are always 0, nitrates have been hovering around
5-10ppm although I am not a big fan of my seachem test kit (hard
and plan to get a new brand soon. All other tests are Salifert.
<I use Salifert mostly... a very reliable, easy to read test kit
I do not dose iodine, I will look into this.
<Iodine is required by most corals but should be dose with
As I said I am very new to the whole testing/dosing thing, I
have always relied on visual observation and frequent water
changes in the past, have had a lot of luck both good and bad
haha so have decided recently to step up my game and force
myself to understand the chemistry behind my aquarium.
There are lots of corals in the tank, many of which I know don't
Ricordea, green hairy mushrooms, a few leathers including
Colts/devils hand/ pink cabbage, a hammer coral, many Rock
flower anemones etc.
But honestly Palys are the most prevalent thing in the tank,
mostly due to a very invasive pale bluish green type that is
sometimes the kind melting, sometimes not. I have added some
activated carbon recently and plan to add more soon,
<Don't forget to suspend activated carbon use when dosing>
but I also know I need to rethink some of my coral selection but
I'm not totally sure which to keep and which to move yet!
By the way I don't think I mentioned, this is a heavily stocked
150 gallon tank with a 30 or 40 gallon sump. It started as a 75
gallon 6 years ago and I upgraded to 150 about a year ago.
<Do bear in mind that corals need enough space to open freely
without touching the other corals. Cheers. Wil.>
Nano tank chilling issues
Am facing issues with cooling my Nano tank
I reside in India and am in a city which is hot and humid throughout the
year. The room temperature is about 34 and the water temperature
normally is about 31-32 degrees Celsius.
My setup details are as under:
I have two separate sumps with two chambers each.
The display overflows 40% of water to first sump holds macroalgae and
It overflows to the second sump which hosts the chiller in the first
chamber. 60% of the overflow from the display falls in the first
The return pump is placed in the second chamber of the second pump which
received water post skimming. The return pump is a Sicce silent 1.0
model which pushes about 900 lph to the Nano display Tank which is a 16
<No graphic came through>
The volume of water is as under:
Sump 1 chamber 1: 6 gallons net
Sump 1 chamber 2: 5 gallons net (sand level excluded)
Sump 2 chamber 1: 7 gallons net
Sump 2 chamber 2: 3 gallons net
Display volume (net): 15 gallons net water volume
I has a six footer aquarium previously (discontinued post relocation to
another city) and a chiller for that size. Have a Hailea 1000B model
suited for big aquariums. Am using the same chiller for this Nano set up
The chiller is oversized for this tank beyond doubt and chills the water
within few minutes.
The chiller kicks on and cuts off way too frequently.
<Mmm; you might contact the manufacturer re changing out, replacing the
controller for one with a wider on/off temperature range setting>
I am also facing challenges in maintaining the water temperature stable.
The display, Sump 1 and the sump 2 all have different temperatures even
post running the chiller for long time.
<? Likely due to not much water flow through all; can you increase
The chamber where the chiller outlet is situated has the lest
temperature (chamber 1 sump2)
The display had the maximum temperature with a variation of 0.7-1 degree
<This is about the most I would allow>
Please advise how I can have a uniform temperature across.
<More circulation in the main tank, more flow through the sumps>
Is it the issue of an oversized chiller cutting off and kicking on
<Might not be... and for what it's worth (esp. electrical energy cost
wise), I'd get/use a much smaller (like 1/8HP) chiller here... and not
use the current 1HP>
Or is the matter of flow rate from chiller ?
<Not just/only the chiller, but the rest of the system. Putting (foam)
insulation around much, all the sides of the sumps might well help, but
I'd just look into increasing flow in all>
I am using a pump rated for 3000 litres per hour.
<?! Well, this "should do it" here, but obviously not>
Will a smaller chilling unit provide uniformity and more stability?
<Yes it should>
Bizarre Clownfish question
Hi, this has not happened to my clownfish but another reefer. However,
I'm totally curious as to how this could have occurred and what you
think about it.
I will paste his comments here with the pics. Such a strange occurrence!
What do you think? Thanks!
"Help! Female Clown with burst belly!
Well, I’ve had her for years. She lays eggs all the time and it seems
like it’s catching up to her. I have no clue what to do. She is acting
fine and eating, rubbing against her anemone. She has a belly full of
eggs. I know there’s probably zero I can do and I’m hoping Mother Nature
just does what she needs to do and she will be ok. She’s absolutely
I won’t get her out now. She needs to start laying those eggs ASAP so
then I can better check the cut. Getting her our will stress her more
since she will have nowhere to lay her eggs. Don’t want to do that. As
far as a sharp object goes no. She’s on her anemone with her partner all
day long. As far i can tell they’ll she will start laying them today.
They’re already obsessively cleaning the base of the rock where they lay
all the time.
Update: she’s laying eggs right now. They have a pretty big clutch so
She’s amazing. To be quite honest I’ve seen her day in and out for the
past 5 years every single Day. She’s acting as normal as ever like it
ain’t a thang. I don’t know what to make or her lol. I knew getting her
out of her home would have been a mistake. She was going to start laying
I’ll keep y’all posted.
She's a champ...laying her eggs like she has many times before.
Next day 8:15 am
she laid all of her eggs and her belly is back to normal size. The
opening isn't stretching out anymore which Im hoping will heal soon.
She's eating like a shark and acting 100% normal.
Something tells me this is a common occurrence with clownfish that lay
eggs all the time. Ill keep a close eye on her.
Thank you all that chimed in. She's a little beast!"
<No images came through... I take it this was a report of a tear in the
gut wall... likely due to external trauma. It reads like it will heal.
Re: Bizarre Clownfish question
Oh, my thought is an Isopod or similar but wanted a professional
<An isopod? Does this show in an image? The ones that are parasitic on
Clownfishes don't cut tears in their hosts. Bob Fenner>
Re: giant gourami diet 12/9/19
Thanks as always!
<De nada, Neale.>
Eel tank 12/9/19
Greetings Mr. Fenner & Crew
Long story shortened, added a Gymnothorax fimbriatus about 6 months ago,
he ate a couple young Maroon Clowns I added, I realize I won’t be able
to add any small fish to this tank, removing him I have deemed VERY
difficult as the tank is 5’x5’x2.5’. I have a large reef tank as well, I
have always wanted an Eel tank. I would probably make an Enchelycore
pardalis the next addition and feature fish. I’ve read the WWM article,
which says there is no way to tell the sex.
<Still none to my knowledge.>
One online site sells them as “Male” (for more money) and “Female” a few
hundred less. My guess is they are just hiking up the price on the ones
with more orange coloration, sound right?
<Probably. Am not aware of any evidence or even scientific study about
color differences between sexes (sexual dichromatism) in this species.>
Other question is would Gymnothorax favagineus be ill advised as the
<Gymnothorax favagineus gets much bigger than the other two species.
Have little doubt my old G. favagineus would have eaten an adult G.
fimbriatus. Better choose species with approx. the same adult size and
Too much Eel for the other two? If so, what would you recommend, at
roughly 460 gallons was hoping 3 good sized would be ok? I like Muraena
lentiginosa as well, though it is not very large.
<The size of the tank should not be a problem for 3 medium sized eels
(such as G. fimbriatus), but housing Gymnothorax and Enchelycore eels
together is always a risk. G. fimbriatus and E. pardalis can both be
quite aggressive to new additions. Your chances are best when all the
eels have about the same size and when you provide a sufficient number
of caves to reduce stress and aggression. Beware, they still might not
get along fine depending on their individual temper. Also, I agree with
M. lentiginosa being a little small compared to your other choices,
Muraena pavonia is similar and gets larger. To name a few more species:
Gymnothorax rueppelliae is about the same size as G. fimbriatus.
Gymnothorax kidako is only slightly larger.>
Thank you for your fantastic site, Happy Holidays
<Thanks. Wishing you happy holidays, too. Marco.>
re: Skinny guppy not eating 12/8/19
Thanks so much Neal,
Also the guppies have been medicated 2x previously with Levamisole and
Praziquantel so unless the fish has been somehow reinfected with worms I think
worms is probably unlikely.
I'll look into that disease.
Though I mean Id rather try and treat the guppy alone or something rather than
do nothing? Unsure.
<Understood, but sometimes with small fish, it simply isn't cost effective to
treat them. By the time symptoms appear, the time scale available to actually
turn things around is very limited, and the medications may cost several times
more than the fish itself. Furthermore, excessive medications
are in themselves stressful for fish, and your aquarium filter, so may create
problems beyond the ones you're dealing with. This isn't to say we shouldn't be
humane and leave small fish to suffer, but rather to observe that the chances of
fixing things may be very slight, and the easiest approach may be to euthanise
the fish if it isn't getting better, if only to prevent further suffering and to
minimise the risk of infecting healthy fish kept alongside it. Cheers, Neale.>
re: Skinny guppy not eating 12/8/19
Hi again Neale, Thanks for your reply
I just saw the guppy scratch himself on the gravel 4x in a row. Does that point
more strongly toward a particular disease?
<Such behaviour, called 'Flashing', can indicate external parasites like
Whitespot, but might equally mean the fish is simply itchy, just as humans can
be itchy without implying they have fleas!>
Also a rummy nose has 3 white dots but the white dots look a lot smaller than
ich. (Tank was at 29 degrees incase of ich but it dropped to 28 unsure why) How
do I treat that? And what is it? Is it guppy disease?
<More likely Velvet, which resembles powdered / icing sugar, whereas Ick is more
like the size of salt grains.>
Thanks so much.
<Velvet is quite common, but easily treated using standard commercial
medications. It infects the gills first, which can cause laboured breathing in
fish, so that's another sign to look for. The old 'salt and heat' method can
work well, but if you're able, a reliable anti-Velvet medication such as eSHa
EXIT or Waterlife Protozin is the best approach. Do remember to remove carbon,
if used, while medicating. Cheers, Neale.>
re: Skinny guppy not eating 12/8/19
Hi again Neale,
Thanks for your reply.
Looking through my tank records I now realise this guppy was a new guppy (one of
the survivors from the ones I got in late October) has not been treated with
Levamisole so it is possible and even probable it has worms.
Thinking of QT it in tank water in a tub and medicating it tomorrow.
If it doesn't improve then it may have an internal infection or something more
Though the dots on the rummy nose are concerning. Should I put my temperature
slowly back down to 26 or leave it around 29?
<Up high will be fine for both Guppies and Rummynoses, which can thrive at 28-30
C, assuming good oxygenation of the water. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Hello Question about acrylic crazing or seam failure.
Yes the stand is very sturdy and the tank has a built in cushion at ye
bottom. It’s for my WC Frontosa Mpembew colony so wanted your expert
<Ahh, I too raise frontosa, but not from this locality>
Thanks and I will use this tank until any issue. Thanks
<Certainly welcome, BobF>
Orandas with raw reddish patches and white bumps
I’ve spent hours looking through your site, (THANK YOU for it’s existence!),
but couldn’t find any images with descriptions that I could be sure matched
mine. So, I’ll give writing in a try!
<Sure thing, and thanks for the kind words.>
Several weeks ago I thought I noticed the beginnings of an inch infection
and treated the entire tank with salt. I added a tablespoon for every 5
gallons, then repeated two days later. The white spots seemed to have gotten
better, but there’s been a raw “meaty” outbreak on the tail of one for a
while now that has gotten worse, and another has a white round eruption and
is hanging out at the bottom of the tank more than usual. The third seems
I have a 65 gallon tank with a 406 Fluval and have under gravel filters with
2 power heads. The air pump is for a 100 gallon tank and the tank has plenty
of aeration. I used to feed them Tetra Goldfish Flakes and sometimes frozen
brine shrimp, but I thought I might be introducing disease with the shrimp
and stopped that. Now I feed them North Fin Premium Goldfish pellets that
sink. (I haven’t noticed any difference in the fish with the change of food
and it’s been almost a year.) I measured the ammonia levels and they are
zero. There are 3 goldfish, two of which I need help with.
I have sharpened the images so their scales appear more pronounced in some
images more than they actually are, but I wanted the outbreaks to be well
Fish one has had a reddish outbreak for months now and it’s getting worse.
Changing the tank water and using Melafix alone, then later Melafix with
Pimafix, hasn’t cured it.
<Indeed; both are fairly useless, or at least, unreliable.>
About a year or so ago I had another fish that was also having eruptions and
treated the tank with Amoxicillin. I used 1 Capsule (500mg.) per 20 gallons
every day for 7 days. Overall, there seemed to be improvement, however one
fish may have had some kind of scale damage that could not be repaired and
had a large, cottony “growth” on it’s side. It behaved normally and seemed
unaffected by it. Fish one behaves normally, but the red and raw looking
patches are getting worse. Did the salt make it worse?
<Nope. Low salt concentrations are completely harmless to Carassius
Fish two was fine, except that now it appears that a white growth is
appearing on it’s side. There appears to be some white on it’s head too. Is
that ich? However, this is the one that’s bothering me because it suddenly
is spending lots of time on the bottom of the tank and none of them have
ever done that before without dire consequences. (The end is near.) Tomorrow
I’ll change the tank water. I was thinking of leaving the charcoal out of
the fluvial and treating with the Amoxicillin again.
<Which won't help if the problem is viral, which is what I suspect.>
All of their fins appear pretty normal. No pronounced red streaks or tears.
I am desperate to get my fish healthy and happy again. I’ve kept fancy
goldfish for about 40 years and I’ve never had struggles like this before. I
do believe there might be something in the tap water, but I don’t know for
sure. I always use AmQuel Plus and NovAqua when I change the water and add 5
tablespoons of aquarium salt for every 5 gallons of new water.
My fish and I thank you in advance for any expert advice we can get! Thank
you SO much!
<Do look at photos of Carp Pox on Goldfish. This is moderately common, but
alas, there's no treatment. A vet may be able to remove some lesions, but
beyond that, it's a case of waiting for the immune system to deal with it.
Under good conditions, that can happen, but it will take months, even years,
of good care. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Orandas with raw reddish patches and white bumps
Hi Neale. Thank you SO much for your kind and generous response. Does this
reply mean that you were able to open the jpegs?
<Yes, no problem opening and examining the images. The thing is, bloody
sores and white growths are actually characteristic of a range of diseases.
Bacterial infections including plain old Finrot on the one hand, and the
much more sinister Septicaemia on the other. Viral infections, notably Carp
Pox, can produce pinkish-white growths on the body too, though usually
without obvious evidence of bleeding. So to some extent I can point you in
the right direction, but you need to look at those possibilities, compare
them with images online, and study things like the behaviour of your fish,
and whether the tissue looks actively flaking and bleeding (bacteria
infection more likely) or simply wart- or tumour-like (in which case a viral
cause might be suspected). It's really difficult to diagnose viral
infections in fish, with only one or two having obvious symptoms
(Lymphocystis springs to mind).>
If not, I wonder where I would post the images? Would it be helpful to
resend them at a smaller size? I’m a photographer and spent some time
getting the best images I could. I will search for Carp pox on goldfish.
And, yes, I have wondered if some of the issues were viral. I suspect for
sure that was true on one fish I had that never got better no matter what I
did. I hate to admit it, and still feel horrible about it to this day, but
he was so unsightly with a large growth on his side that I euthanized him,
even though he wasn’t bothered by it and in face seemed kind of happy. Oh
Lord… I’m a murderer!
So - if you have time to let me know if you were able to see the images and
if not, if it would help to resend them smaller, please let me know.
Otherwise, I’ll just work on keeping the water as clean as possible and
Thank you again! Edward
<Glad to help, and feel free to keep us posted with any further changes or
symptoms you come across. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Orandas with raw reddish patches and white bumps
Hi again. I looked at images of Carp pox, and that is what I concluded the
fish I euthanized had.
However, the sores the two fish have now don’t have the same look as he did,
but I know that that virus could be contagious.
<Tricky this one. Yes, viruses should be contagious. But in reality, with
most if not all of the fish virus infections we encounter, they are unlikely
to transfer to otherwise healthy fish. For some reason there needs to be a
stress factor at work, such as inappropriate water chemistry or acute
physical trauma (such as fish tattooing) before the virus 'jumps across' to
That could explain why two have sores and one doesn’t. Perhaps that one is
immune to it?
And maybe there is a secondary infection on top of it in the one fish with
the red sores?
<Certainly possible, and treating as per a systemic bacteria infection is
worth a shot. There is a form of viral haemorrhagic septicaemia occasionally
seen in fish that does seem to be a combination of virus and bacterial
agents, so the use of antibiotics can help. Symptoms include reddish patches
on the body, bloating, disinterest in food, and eventually death. There
isn't a known cure as such, but thankfully it's pretty rare. Caught early
on, as I say, antibiotics may help, and the fish's own immune system kick in
strongly enough to remove the virus. But with most of these viral infections
that's about all we can do, because there are no commercially available
antiviral medicines useful on fish. Fortunately, they are rarely contagious,
so we don't encounter them very often.>
Doing all that I can. Thanks again! Edward
<The best you can do is all you can do. Good luck, Neale.>
giant gourami diet
I hope all is well,
Firstly - thanks again for your advice the other week on the giant
It took a while but I am pleased to say he is now fully healed. I am
also pleased to say he is thriving.
I have been feeding him mainly different pellets and some fruit. A
1. Vitalis Pleco pellets
2. Hikari Algae wafers
3. Grapes (on occasion)
4. Banana (on occasion)
5. Mussels (on occasion)
I have read conflicting reports as to whether they are herbivores or
omnivores. I was hoping you could advise on what an ideal diet would be?
I know it should be varied and not feeding the same thing every time,
but not sure what an 'ideal' diet regime would look like?
I was thinking of making defrosted frozen veg a 'staple' of their diet,
but then I am not sure what veg they can and cant eat, and also whether
that would be suitably nutritious if it formed the majority of their
Also any other pellets I should add into the mix? Given his size there
isn't that many veg based pellets on the market that are big enough.
The other point is how much to feed? He eats a lot very quickly, I know
there is a '5 minute rule' in terms of feeding how much they could eat
in 5 min.s, but If I let him he would probably eat an entire bunch of
bananas in 5 min.s which can't be good for him!!
<Hello again! These fish are absolutely omnivores. So your menu should
fit the bill never nicely. In terms of bulk, green foods are probably
the ideal, but some protein-rich foods, like the mussels, will help keep
him growing nicely. Koi pellets would probably make an inexpensive
staple, so certainly try those. Now, when it comes to feeding, plant
foods (which contain little protein) can be left in the tank
indefinitely. Often, fish wait for them to soften up anyway, so it can
be some days before they eat tougher plants and fruits. I agree, five
bananas is probably overkill, but letting him eat half a banana a day
wouldn't cause any water quality problems because there's so little
nitrogen in such foods. Experiment, and see what works for you! Cheers,
Skinny guppy not eating
No fish have died so far and there are 2 fry that are going well. Only
one smaller male seems to not be eating now. What could be causing it?
He is skinny too and I remember last time I saw his poop it was kind of
stringy. Im thinking of putting him in the QT tank with Levamisole. Is
that a good idea?
<Worms are a possibility, but to be honest, with farmed Guppies, the
so-called 'Wasting Disease', Mycobacteriosis, is more probable. There's
no treatment as such, beyond optimising living conditions and hoping for
the best. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Skinny guppy not eating 12/7/19
Thanks for your reply,
I got him from a private breeder. How do I distinguish worms vs.
<Unless you're a vet or microbiologist, you can't. Broadly speaking
though, worms do two things you can sometimes observe clearly: either
emerge from the vent as red threads (Camallanus worms) or cause
abdominal swelling while the rest of the fish becomes skinny (intestinal
Mycobacteriosis causes a range of symptoms, including wasting, bloody
sores, strange behaviours such as hiding away, and eventually death. But
because Mycobacteriosis shares those symptoms with other diseases, for
example Aeromonas and Pseudomonas bacteria can cause sores, and worms
can cause wasting, it's really difficult to positively diagnose. It's
normally implicated by default, where a fish fails to respond to
reliable antibiotic and/or anti parasite medications. Make sense?>
Is there any way to treat mycobacteriosis + worms at same time? Should I
QT him or not bother?
<For the sake of a single Guppy in its own tank, I personally wouldn't
do much beyond observe. If I had a tank of Guppies, then deworming on a
prophylactic basis isn't a bad idea at all, and products like PraziPro
do this reasonably reliably. Medicating for Mycobacteriosis is
essentially impossible, but if you use an antibiotic, it won't do any
harm, can work just fine with PraziPro, and might solve the problem if
some other bacterium is involved.>
re: Skinny guppy not eating 12/7/19
Hi again Neale, Just sending this along with my last reply I got a video
of the guppy
Its the tiger one, he's been thin like that the whole time I had him.
Same with purple one. Though recently the tiger one isn't seeming to be
Unsure how long he hasn't been eating fir
<Yep, have seen this many, many times with livebearers, including my own
colony of Limia. Doesn't seem to kill the fish particularly quickly, so
I don't think it's a Mycobacteria infection. It might be something
called Tetrahymena pyriformis, also know as 'Guppy Disease'. Do look at
some photos online. Difficult to treat (no commercial treatment
available so far as I know) but equally doesn't seem especially
contagious, so may affect fish that are otherwise stressed or
genetically weak. So do some research on these possibilities, and act
accordingly. Cheers, Neale.>
Aquarium repair 12/7/19
I have a 180 gallon acrylic tank 72x24x24 the tank is empty and it has
maybe a seam separation not sure what it is her is a picture of it any
<Mmm; you may be fortunate here to be able to simply apply a low
viscosity solvent (Weld-on 16 would be my choice) to the seam/area here
this is whited out. Elsewise, annealing a square or triangular dowel in
the inside corner (the entire length, if it were mine, all inside
corners), cut to size, as gone over on WWM re acrylic repairs. Bob
Re: Aquarium repair 12/7/19
So I should apply Weld-on 16 from the top to the bottom seam and add a
acrylic piece as well top to bottom
<Mmm... the solvent just to the joint (bottom) where the whited out area
is what I would try first. Give it a couple days to cure. BobF>
Hello Question about acrylic crazing or seam failure
I Bought this tank used. After getting it home noticed these scratches.
I read your article but don't know how to differentiate between crazing and
seem a failure.
<Seam failure is between annealed/solvented surfaces, crazing stress
fracturing outside the joint>
The tank is not leaking and holds water. Can you shed some light before I
stock this tank.
<I'd likely still use this tank; assuring its on a stand that is planar,
level (and strong of course). The seams appear strong (enough), just a bit
unsightly. Bob Fenner>
Aquarium repair 12/6/19
I have a 180 gallon acrylic tank 72x24x24 the tank is empty and it has maybe a
seam separation not sure what it is her is a picture of it any help Thanks
<Hi, could you please resize/crop the image down to just a few hundred Kb's and
resend it? Wil.>
I Love Your Website! Link/ pond const.
My name is Anne and I run the expertaquarist.com blog.
<I have seen this>
I saw that you have a bunch of great resources on wetwebmedia.com
I was wondering if you would be interested in sharing one of my
resources that is relevant to you?
We talk mostly about fishkeeping in aquariums or ponds, aquascaping and
reef keeping. If you feel like sharing it, here is the URL -
<I will gladly add the link to this article on the pertinent parts of
BTW, whether you add it or not, I’d be happy to give you:
- A shout out from my pinterest account (having 300K+ reach per month)
- A shout out from my tweeter account
Please let me know if there is anything of YOURS that I can promote for
<Mmm; if you find, feel there are items of interest to your perusers,
please link them in turn>
I just followed you on twitter so I can stay updated.
<We/I don't "do" twitter. Bob Fenner>
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