FAQs on Marine Ich, White Spot,
Marine Ich: Fighting The War On Two
Fronts, Cryptocaryoniasis, Parasitic
Disease, Quarantine, Quarantine of Marine
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Work By Name: Free Copper/Cupric Ion
Compounds (e.g. SeaCure), Chelated Coppers (e.g. Copper Power,
), Formalin Containing: (e.g.
Quick Cure), About: Hyposalinity & Ich, Treating for Crypt & Sensitive
Fishes: By Fish Group: Sharks/Rays, Morays and other Eels, Mandarins/Blennies/Gobies, Wrasses, Angels and
Butterflyfishes, Tangs/Rabbitfishes, Puffers & Kin... &
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Biological Cleaners, Treating Parasitic Disease,
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Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster
Bob, thank you. I see the porcupine puffer seems to have either
<Common; and easily cured w/ Prazi/quantel, other Anthelminthics>
or broken spines here and there on his body (approximately 6 in total).
It seems to have increased over the week from 2. I reviewed FAQs for
puffers/Burrfish on disease, I see a few other mentions of this
observation but it seems conclusions go in either direction.
I wonder if it is possible that Ich scratching or a tankmate caused
broken spines, or if in fact he has a parasitic worm problem.
<Could have either/both>
No other tankmates have this issue. I have not observed him scratching.
When Ich spots were present on fish, the Bluehead wrasse seemed
interested in picking off Ich spots on tankmates (although none would
allow), but he doesn't show interest in the puffer. The puffer is eating
heartily and active.
I have PraziPro on hand, and copper treatment / water changes continue.
Any guidance? Thanks! Dave
<I'd treat all the fishes w/ this compound, now. B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 8/27/12
Thank you Bob. At a quick search I can't see whether attempting the
PraziPro treatment for my Fowlr display tank alongside my ongoing
Cupramine treatment is ill-advised. Perhaps I should check with Amanda
at Seachem, or would you know?
<Ill-advised? I would not treat live rock... or sand... as these almost
always have a plethora of worm species to phyla... whose deaths create a
real bio-hazard. B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster... fluke trtmt. f' as well
OK, I have wondered if the Crypto-Pro (completed) and Cupramine
(ongoing) treatments have already caused the rock inhabitant die-offs to
occur...given the ongoing Ammonia/Nitrate levels that
register...however it's not a good time to gamble that these will not
raise further so I will treat outside the tank.
<...? Am I given to understand you're treating w/ the rock present? I
would NOT do this>
I will attempt PraziPro bath/baths for the puffer first. Do I wait until
I observe signs of external flukes/worms on the others before attempting
the same? I don't see any signs on the other tank inhabitants. I wonder
if this is something that is/will only plague the puffer? I may have
great difficulty removing the others from the tank also, but will do
whatever needs to be done and as you suggest...
<... have already answered this... archived on WWM>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 8/27/12
Hi Bob, Sorry for the confusion, I had treated the whole FOWLR tank
(rock included) with Crypto Pro (2 weeks) and Cupramine (ongoing to
finish at 2 weeks), but I will not treat for worms/flukes in the main
tank (with the rock) as I understand you are strongly advising against
it. Sorry...and I will reference the WWM archives regarding my question
of whether I treat the puffer's tankmates who have not yet shown the
Again I thank you, Dave
<Thank you for the clarification B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 8/27/12
Bob, thank you. I researched the archives more closely and have come up
with some treatment paths on the newly emerging worm issue. If I may run
the by you to elicit your suggestion on the optimal path.
As you may recall, my fish have been through a lot with ongoing display
tank Crypto Pro and Copper treatments. I am maintaining Cupramine in the
tank, coming upon day 14 on Tuesday. I have been maintaining a .2-.3ppm
I described likely/increasing worm pathogens on the porcupine puffer,
appearing as stray/limp spines. I also have noticed black Ich spots on
the hippo tang, greatly increasing in just a day's time. Is it likely to
be the same pathogen species?
<Not likely the same, no... Trematodes (the most populous such worm
parasites) tend to be more species, family specific>
Or, is it more likely to be separate species that are taking advantage of
these organisms with reduced immunity from the ongoing copper?
<Can't tell Dave... need to examine under a 'scope>
You have advised that I treat all fish with Prazi, now. And, that I
absolutely do use Prazi in the display tank further (i.e., with the
I have a challenge in that the already stressed fish will, on the whole,
be very difficult to remove from and put back into from the main tank
for daily treatment, and I don't currently have a large quarantine
option to accommodate all fish.
Herein I see several options:
1) Continue Cupramine treatment at an increased level (i.e. above .35),
<... again, I would not do this. Too toxic>
which would target the worms (as recommended by Seachem). I see in the
archives that copper is can be recommended/successful in treating these
While this could increase the risk to the fish, it would allow them to
forego daily chases/baths and target the worms. I am nervous about
higher copper and wonder if this is a poor option.
<It is IMO/E>
2) Continue Cupramine at existing dose to full treatment duration,
administer Prazi Pro baths to easily caught fish now (i.e., hippo in
isolation, puffer), monitor and remove/treat the difficult-to-catch fish
if/when fluke problem causes them to be lethargic. This seems risky in
that I must rely on significant pathogen damage to the faster fish
before I can catch/treat (and raises likelihood that infestation would
continue for all fish).
3a) Option 1 or 2 plus beginning display tank Paraguard treatment after
the full Cupramine treatment (Amanda from Seachem suggested this as a
fluke treatment alternative). This would help manage all pathogenic
conditions (although add to a long treatment regimen for the fish).
3b) Same as Option 3a, except end Cupramine treatment early/now and
start Paraguard ASAP.
Any feedback on which is best? Or is there a different suggested option?
<I'd go w/ 2 as my first choice 3a as my second>
Thanks again and again...Dave
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster
Thank you for your help. Today is day 15 of the Copper treatment.
<... there should be no Cryptocaryon present>
Last night, I did a max capacity (35%, about 80 gallons) water change. I
turned on the skimmer, and put 1/3 of the carbon back into the system. I
thought I shouldn't re-add all at once, as I understand this can be a
shock to the animals.
<Not really... much over-stated>
I have confirmed a major error in testing the copper. Having used
Cupramine and the corresponding Seachem test, which makes use of a
miniscule amount of powder reagent to render the results, I believe that
I used too little or none in a test following the day 10 water change.
Believing that my copper levels dropped of significantly, and
calculating a redose, I likely was running the copper around .5-.6 for a
This was the cause for major stress for the hippo, who I believe is
exhibiting Lymphocystis (i.e., I don't believe it was black Ich). I see
fluffy tumors that dissipated since the water change last night, but are
now primarily on one pectoral fin, near the eye and around the body on
its left side.
I'm afraid the porcupine puffer won't make it. I see he shed his slime
coat (which I mistakenly believed to be Ich spots last week, confirming
my wrong conclusion that the copper had dropped way too much).
<Don't give up>
I will see if I can get some Cuprisorb ASAP. I will postpone fluke bath
until I see the puffer make some recovery, as I'm afraid he may die
I am replenishing my water reserve ASAP so I can try to get another
large water change. In testing the Copper levels with a more liberal
amount of powder reagent, it seems I am around .4 now.
Fortunately, the other fish seem fine (maroon clown, engineer gobies,
blue chin trigger, blueface wrasse), although I see the blueface wrasse
doing a lot of scratching. I interpret this to be discomfort with the
<Very likely so. B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 8/29/12
Bob, thank you. It occurred to me that this could have been a
longer-running error than I originally thought, seeing how bad the
One other question - is there a possibility that the slime coat I see as
shedding poses a toxin risk to the tank?
<Not appreciable, no>
Counting the hours to the next water change...and tomorrow's arrival of
<The carbon will likely have removed all by day's end. B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 8/30/12
Hi Bob, thanks.
The puffer seems much worse, lays on the ground and does not eat. I'm
afraid he won't make it. Is this most likely copper poisoning, or is it
possible that only 6 or so flukes could be causing this level of
distress, and that I should try the PraziPro bath immediately?
<Worth doing... this product is not very toxic>
I see all other fish doing heavy scratching, which leaves me to wonder
whether it is either due to the high copper level (which should by now
be substantially lower), or if I potentially mis-tested levels and did
not fully remove the Cryptocaryon. I had 6 peppermint shrimp in my tank
well before treatment, and did notice one (the largest) did survive the
copper and quinine (i.e., did the "mine canary" confirm that the levels
were not sustained high enough...).
<Should have perished>
Well patience and observation probably needs to be employed, but I am
concerned especially for the puffer at this moment.
<Just time going by at this point. B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 8/30/12
Bob, thank you.
Based on my observations and your "should have perished" comment on the
peppermint shrimp, I am afraid I have not administered any dose of
medication that is lethal to the Crypt. I wonder if the affliction I see
on the puffer is in fact heavy and final Ich infestation, and also see
heavy spotting returning to the hippo after putting the skimmer and
carbon into the system last night. This spotting on the hippo appears to
be Ich. All if this combined with continued scratching by the other fish
(especially at the gills).
<... the only way to really tell...>
At this point, I will wait and give the puffer some peace (perhaps final
resting) if/before it succumbs (and to otherwise observe whether Ich
seems to be returning to the other fish). I will also get another copper
test kit, as this may all be due to my user error in
administering/reading copper test results. Then, I will start running
Three weeks of Crypto Pro and Cupramine seems to be more than any invert
could handle, if in fact it was at an appropriate dose. However, the
shrimp seems to be doing just fine.
I have always administered heavy water changes on the system (i.e.,
25-35% weekly at minimum frequency), with RO source water. It seems I am
ruling out other possible pathogen or illness introductions to the
Trial and error at a heavy price to pay for my system...and lessons
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 9/4/12
If ever there was a plot for a very dark ocean comedy...
I believe the puffer will succumb overnight. Heavy slime coat
production, eyes completely clouded over, heavy breathing and laying on
the tank bottom for the last 5-6 days...in all, similar final days as
After removing copper fully, then I restoring Copper levels for at least
the last 48 hours, I see illness still progressing in all fish.
<One last time; a plea for diagnosis, taking samples or sending out for
I now suspect I have misdiagnosed (or more likely, am dealing with
multiple pathogens). I suspect Amyloodinium,
<... no; all would be long since dead>
as I see other signs of parasitic infection that seem to be consistent
with FAQs and articles on this condition. The only anomalies to my
current suspicion are 1) it seems to progress rather slow, and 2) I
wonder if it is possibly Ich that was not properly treated with Copper
levels (i.e., even though my testing shows Copper levels that have gone
to .35, I still see the single peppermint shrimp which "should have
perished' as you stated).
<Yes; assuredly. Part of the reason folks should NOT treat in tanks w/
Alternately, I wonder if this could be something that is not parasitic,
but causing heavy slime coat secretions that are misleading me to
diagnose external parasitic pathogen.
<Could be just the copper...>
Anyway, I decided to start copper removal tonight, and will begin
aggressive Paraguard as soon as it is removed from the system. The
gobies, bluechin trigger, and hippo tang seem to be next on the death
docket. What have I got to lose...
<Your happiness. For which I am deeply grieved. B>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 9/5/12
Bob, small update, I did restart Crypto Pro last night, and am storing
up a large water change. I am also seeing if I can plan to move all fish
out of the display tank and into a very large treatment tank.
This would take significant planning and effort, but I am exploring...
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster 9/5/12
Bob, I thank you for your encouraging response. i realized how much
is/was at stake for throwing in the towel (well above/beyond the fish I
hope to nurse back to health)...so your response truly gave me new
stamina in continuing the fight with the fish.
I removed the puffer's carcass and placed it in the fridge so that I can
research further testing tomorrow. I spent the day testing, doing a
heavy water change, and discussing the issue again with Seachem (to rule
out my other possible misuse of the product). I also did a heavy amount
of reviewing disease articles and FAQs on WWM.
I spoke with Michael at Seachem, as Amanda was out for the day. I had to
rehash much of my journey. Before doing so and in describing the
condition, he said it sounded like Amyloodinium. I related all details
and the belief that it couldn't be. He wondered if it was possible that
it was in fact Amyloodinium, and whether I held off severe infestation
until now in failing to manage/eradicate with my ongoing treatment
<... I've already responded to this speculation>
I look forward to exploring next step in diagnosis with the puffer, as
you have suggested. Tomorrow I will research how I can have samples
tested. I speculate that the poor strategy of display tank treatment,
misdiagnosis of condition(s), and questions about copper level
could contribute to an Amyloodinium organism population that was attacked
but managed to hold on and recently spike? I have had confirmed Ich and
puffer flukes as well, but each fish that has died or is dying seems to
have a text book Amyloodinium attack - I have spent much time reviewing
pictures/descriptions on this today.
I have begun copper dosing, with the hope that I restore a therapeutic
level soon. I will also employ Paraguard baths as possible tomorrow and
going forward. I also wonder if I should redose Crypto Pro / Quinine in
the display? I recall in my journaling of its prior use that Crypt
seemed to return at the end of its usage but the current infection did
not begin until after I stopped dosing it (and the infection has
worsened after each water change, which has further removed the Crypto
<Our exchanges are archived in the most recent (31?) Crypt FAQs files>
Re: Help! Ich? Prelude to disaster
Bob, here is a final update on my recent disease run.
I am down to a final surviving fish - the Bluehead wrasse. I see his
swimming is far more agitated than usual, and his fin scratching
However, relative to his expired tankmates, he seems to be holding on.
Just before each fish has succumbed, they all seemed to lose their slime
coat in patches, swim near the surface, heavily scratch/breathe, and a
colored (whitish or gold/light brown with slightly noticeable specks
some times) coats. They all succumbed quickly when the visible signs
began, in fairly quick (almost daily at the end) succession, in this
harlequin tusk, porcupine puffer, hippo tang, engineer goby one, blue
jaw trigger, maroon clown, engineer goby two. I noticed the gills of the
blue jaw trigger seemed to have blood as well when removing the carcass
from the tank.
Unfortunately, I arranged for a scrape at a LFS, but things have come up
in my personal life that have taken away from my daylight
troubleshooting of this disease. If the wrasse dies, I may be able to.
This has been saddening, but at the beginning of the disease run I
quickly realized the error that caused this progression, and resigned
myself to treat/salvage as possible but begin anew as need and learn
from my mistakes. So, I will start the next chapter with heart that I
paid for a mistake and won't make it again.
Here is what I believe to be my mistake - a single fish that was
recently wild caught and special ordered for me and went straight into
my tank without sufficient quarantine (i.e., the 7" harlequin tusk),
thereby wreaking parasitic (?) havoc. Despite the incredible amount of
research done over years on your site, and full awareness of the need
for quarantine protocol, I took the fish home seeing mild signs of Ich
and placed it straight in my tank at the suggestion of the LFS owner. I
trusted his insights based on his reputation as having built one of the
larges fish stores in CO (if not the nation). "I never quarantine, never
dip...don't believe any hype about their benefits...in my experience
they always do more harm than good...best preventive measure is to get
the best sourced fish...
<The last I do agree with... but, even from the best sources, animals,
water gets mixed w/ other sources...>
I have the best suppliers who provide fish that have rarely come to me
with serious problems...the fish looks and should shake off the spots as
soon as it is put in your tank, and if you are keeping good tank
conditions it and the other fish won't have anything to worry about",
and so on. I thought the risks would be low. That said, I have only
myself to blame for letting anecdote versus science encourage my tank
So I will rehome the Bluehead wrasse if it survives through the week,
then begin a 2 month fallow period with a 85-95 F temperature and start
over. I will also reduce the lighting for a time period to hopefully
allow nutrient/biological stability to return after tank medication (I
see some nuisance algae starting to grow, especially an ongoing diatom
bloom or brown algae), and will run all chemical/skimmer filtration
after a period of 2 more weeks of increased copper/quinine. And of
course, strictly observe quarantine protocol in starting over.
Thank you for all your support, and I feel I owe you an apology for
taking your time through this process. The time/effort you spend
(waste?) on problems that are coached ad nauseum but easily avoided
if/when your WWM guidance is followed....must be a frustration!
<Easily offset by the joy of realizing the help and inspiration rendered
to other folks, times>
Anyway, for me it's back to keeping things light on the hobby. For this
experience, I'm sure round 2 will prove to be much more
<A good attitude, outlook Dave. Excelsior! BobF>
Multiple sick fishes 7/15/12
Dear WWM Crew, I have been scouring your pages to try to find some
information on what steps to take in curing two of my sick fish. I
am in the process of learning the hard way that a quarantine tank
is absolutely necessary, and I would like to apologize for my fish
keeping negligence in advance.
<The vast majority of folks belong "to this club"; myself included>
I purchased a Spotted Bristle-tooth Tang from my LFS three weeks
ago and did not quarantine, again so sorry. The tang was
doing very well in my 75 gallon FOWLR tank for the three weeks
that I had it. Other tank mates are a Black and White
Percula clownfish, one PJ Cardinal and two Banggai Cardinals. Woke
up to find the tang dead on the sand bed and the fish had no
apparent signs of any problem, and was eating/swimming fine the
I removed the deceased fish and observed the other tank mates for
problems. All seemed well for the day, and then I noticed what
seemed to be a heavy infestation of Ich on the clownfish. I
removed all fish from the display tank and treated with
<Mmm, Malachite Green... not my treatment of choice. Very harsh>
in separate quarantine tanks. The next day all cardinals were
dead and all that is left is the Angel and the clownfish. I
fresh water dipped the two and placed into a newly cleaned
quarantine tank. Both fish responded well with the fw dip.
Today, day three of quarantine, I have noticed that both fish are
swimming aimlessly, refusing food, and have milky looking eyes.
<The burn from the Malachite likely the cause of loss of the Apogonids
and eye cloudiness>
I do not know what I need to do to treat these fish, I have copper
safe available, or formalin, to treat them in separate tanks due
to the Angel's copper sensitivity, will this be enough to save
What other treatments or methods would you recommend.
<Please read here:
These fish are also refusing to eat anything that is in the tank, and
I have been soaking all foods, seaweed, Mysis, brine and flakes in
Selcon. Please help and thank you for such an amazing informative
Please help with ICH protocol 6/18/12
I purchased a Dussumieri tang and it arrived via mail on Saturday. My
blue line angel did not appreciate this and chased him around the tank.
I moved the blue line to the sump and there is peace once more.
I did not quarantine this fish. It now has ICH. I feel like a
moron but there is no point in looking back. I will do everything I can
to fix this situation and quarantine new individuals from now on.
Tank inhabitants are as follows: live rock, live sand, 2
bimaculatus Anthias, 1 mappa puffer and 1 blue line angel. I have
purchased Cupramine and test kits. I am unsure what to do here.
<... not put this in an established system w/ LR, LS>
The tang looks fine other than the white spots. It is eating great and
swimming around. There are no signs of symptoms on any other fish.
1. Do you think it would be ok to play a wait and see game and see if he
gets better on his own?
<Yes. Please read here:
and the linked files above>
I feel like tearing the tank apart would cause stress to everyone
involved. Can this fish get better on his own with great water quality
and food or, am I just endangering all the other fish by waiting a
couple of days?
<I would wait myself>
2. Would it be ok to treat just the tang in quarantine and monitor the
other fish? Have they( and the system) been exposed to the infestation
already and its too late?
<Best to leave all as is for now>
3. Is the Cupramine safe to use with the mappa and blue line angel?
<Mmm, marginally. IF puffers, angels are initially healthy, they can/will
stand up to a chelated copper regimen>
Please help. I know I've made a mistake and will never do it again. I'll
wait for instructions before proceeding.
<Doing my best bit. Bob Fenner>
Re: Please help with ICH protocol 6/19/12
Thanks for your quick reply. Just to let you know, the tang doesn't have
a single spot on him today. I'm confused. I got him Saturday. He had no
spots. Yesterday he had plenty of Ich on him. Today he has none.
<Likely just "cycled off"... you have a "one generation" incident... in
the not too immortal words of a mesomorph ex Ca. gov.: "they'll be
Does that make sense? Could they have dropped off in one day? Is it a
miracle? Should I lay off the drugs?
<Not a miracle, but I would still lay off... and hope. B>
Re: Please help with ICH protocol 6/20/12
Ok- I will hope. When can I expect the new batch of guests to arrive on
the prized fish's hides?
<... two, three days, at low 80's F... See WWM, elsewhere re
Cryptocaryon "life cycle". B>
Plan of Attack for Crypt
Hello WWM Crew,
Thank you so much for all the wonderful information you provide and the
time you take to provide it. I am writing to seek your advice as
to the proper course of action in dealing with Crypt in my 225 G FOWLR
tank. I have reviewed the many articles and FAQs on WWM and other
sites and am trying to come up with the best course of action for my
I apologize in advance for the length of this message, but I want you to
have all of the information (though I'm sure I still left some out).
I will start with the current and future tank set up. I have two
tanks that are up and running. First, a 75G reef tank with two
ocellaris clowns, one hippo tang, a royal gramma, a Lysmata shrimp, and
two tuxedo urchins. This tank is doing very well. Second, a
225G FOWLR (and wet/dry) with a juvenile passer angel (3"), a juvenile
niger trigger (2-3"), a juvenile bird wrasse (4"), a Foxface (4-5"), a
snowflake eel (12"), and a Halloween urchin. In addition, I have
just purchased a 300G tank. My plan is for the 75G tank to retire
and become an excellent QT tank, for the 225G to house the reef tank
(the current inhabitants of the 75G) and for the 300G to become the
FOWLR (housing the current inhabitants of the 225G). That
transition is in progress. The 300G is almost filled with
saltwater made from an RO/DI system. The live rock from the FOWLR
has been moved over to the 300G, but nothing else has been moved.
<With you so far>
Now for the sad part of the story. After moving the live rock
over, all of the fish in the 225G are showing signs of crypt except the
eel and bird wrasse. This tank previously suffered an outbreak
(about 8 months ago), which unfortunately occurred while I was on a
two-week vacation. As a result, my fish-sitter was left to deal
with the problem (a very good friend who went above and beyond the call
of duty in this situation, but not an experienced fish keeper). We
tried to deal with the problem from afar. At that time, my LFS
suggested removing all the live rock (but not the substrate) and treat
the fish in the display with Pointex (a copper sulfate product by Aqua
Medic). We instituted the suggested treatment.
Predictably, the water quality started to foul, I did my best to direct
the treatment and water testing from afar, but ultimately chickened out
based on reports I was getting and directed water changes and when I got
home removed the copper with carbon and Polyfilter. The fish that
survived the ordeal (those listed above in the 225) appeared to be
cured, but a latent infestation remained and has now reappeared.
So now I am trying to fashion a plan of attack and move quickly. I
suppose the good news is that I discovered this before the fish moved to
the new tank. The bad news is that I do not yet have the 75G
available as a QT.
First, the easy part, I intend to allow the new 300G which now only has
live rock to lay fallow for 6-8 weeks (in case the live rock brought
over unwanted visitors). Next is determining what to do with the
225G which now has only substrate and PVC for shelter. Either I
treat the whole tank with copper (Pointex again) or remove all the fish
and treat with copper in QT while allowing the 225 to run fallow.
Unfortunately all I have available for QT now is a 20G long and about a
40G Rubbermaid container. Because this display tank was already
treated with copper 8 months ago my guess is that the substrate is not
as live as it once was - but I'm sure some die off would occur.
I do not intend to use this substrate again once the move is completed (it
is not a large amount), but the 225 tank itself will be used to replace
the 75G reef. Given all this, would it be preferable to treat the
fish (except the eel) with copper in the 225 or still better to squeeze
them into the small QTs (I'm thinking it will be a bit tight for these
<I would treat all fishes in the 225... but with quinine (CP)>
If I move the fish to QTs I would leave the eel in display and perhaps
give him one bath (using Seachem's Paraguard) while in the 225G and
eventually move him over to the 300 (I would give him another bath
before putting him in). I would also plan to move the fish
straight from QT to the 300 after 6-8 weeks. Alternatively, I
would move the eel to QT and treat the fish in the 225G directly with
copper. I know that the preference is not to treat the display,
but I am not sure if that changes if the display is about to be emptied
entirely and substrate discarded.
Would it be easier or harder to maintain the best conditions possible
for the fish during treatment in a larger tank?
If the substrate and water are discarded and the 225 tank is emptied, is
there a substantial risk that the use of copper will make it unsuitable
to be used for a reef later?
Is there a third option under these circumstances that I'm missing?
<The quinine compound:
Perhaps dropping the salinity in the 225 for the fallow period of the 300
and then doing some sort of dip before going to the 300? I want
desperately to do what is best for my fish under these circumstances.
A couple of other questions if I may, what do I do with my Halloween
urchin given that it cannot be treated with copper?
<Move it elsewhere...>
Is it safe to move it to the 75G reef tank or might that also transport
<It is NOT safe to do so; no>
I was planning to use Pointex again, is there another product you
recommend? Lastly, for purposes of testing, Pointex is copper sulfate,
that is not chelated, correct?
<Am not familiar w/ this brand. You can search the Net for the MSDS or
such, or contact the manufacturer re>
Thank you very much,
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: Plan of Attack for Crypt
Thanks Bob! Just so I'm clear, do you recommend quinine sulfate or
Chloroquine phosphate? Thank you again,
Ich Attack - 05/10/2012
WWM: Hiya -
I have poured over your website for many hours in my quest to set up a FOWLR
tank. I have a 180 gallon with a 55 gallon sump, 200 pounds of live rock and
reef octopus SRO3000 INT skimmer that has been set up for about 6 months.
Everything was going fine with the following inhabitants (all properly
quarantined before addition of course):
4" Yellow Tang
4" White Face Tang
6" Sailfin Tang
4" Blue Throat Trigger
4" Picasso Trigger
Everyone got along well. I then decided to add one last fish,
a Blue Hippo Tang. Instead of quarantining this fish I did a
freshwater dip and put directly in the display tank.
WWM: I wish
you’d read the horror stories that lead right where you're heading.
A few days later I had an Ich outbreak that killed the Yellow Tang, White Face
Tang, Blue Hippo Tang and Bicolor Angel within a couple days of each other,
for your loss, Jeff - unfortunately this is, in my opinion (also known
technically as the "right" or "correct" opinion) a Self Inflicted Wound. Sadly
it's one that almost all of us have inflicted on ourselves … making us each
sadder, but wiser
Water quality is good: Ammonia = 0, Nitrite = 0, Nitrate = 20, pH = 8.2. I have
a 50 gallon tank I can use as a hospital tank but it is not set up at the
moment. If I don't move the remaining fish and start treatment I know there is a
good chance they could die as well.
are certainly easier to treat in a QT tank -- and the problem of the life cycle
of the Cryptocaryon irritans is easier to deal with in the FOWLR tank when no
fish are present
My question is without a tank set up right now with a proper biological filter,
what should I do with these fish?
WWM: It's a
tough call, Jeff. What you Should Do (tm) is fill the QT tank with new water,
net and acclimate the fish and then net them AGAIN and place them in that
hospital tank as soon as possible. The PROBLEM is that the fish are likely very
debilitated by the process they've already experienced. What I'm getting at is
they are in grave danger from doing nothing AND from doing anything.
See if they get over it in the display while I wait for the QT tank to cycle or
risk putting them in a fresh tank?
WWM: In a
Quarantine environment you can set up a biocycle in advance, using some sand and
a piece of rock from your FOWLR tank. In an infectious disease situation, you
can't use anything from the old tank and you don't have time to season the new
you're left with is setting up a sterile tank and doing 10% water changes every
day for the next 10 days and 5% water changes thereafter. You're likely going to
have to treat the crypt aggressively anyway -- in my case I use Copper, which
kills the biocycle anyway. Bob Fenner suggests Formalin which is aggressive but
not the Nuclear Option (copper)
Second question is about the display tank. I know I will have to let it run
fallow for a minimum of 8 weeks but read that the Ich can become entrenched and
will never be totally eliminated.
Are there any other precautions I can take to make sure this doesn't happen
again? (Besides quarantining and maintaining water quality?).
you just hit that mail on the head
Needless to say I am pretty upset about the whole situation.
WWM: As we
all get, Jeff. Kicking yourself is not out of order here- we all do it - and we
probably should do it
Thanks for your advice! Jeff
WWM: OK -
here's the long term advice: No one knows for sure if any environment is truly
free of the Cryptocaryon irritans. It's likely that since it needs a living host
to survive, a fallow tank for 8 weeks MIGHT break the cycle and eradicate the
little buggers. But then, when you add new fish, even healthy, properly
quarantined fish, you are probably introducing the Crypt again because it's
likely that each fish has "a few".
WWM: If that
seems contradictory, think of it this way: The human rhinovirus (common cold) is
around us all the time -- you're being exposed to it every day. But as long as
you are exposed to low concentrations of it and/or as long as your immune system
is functioning at peak condition, your body deals with the bug and it's a
non-issue. Then one day you get extremely run down, chilled, weakened,
undernourished and tired and suddenly the normal number of virus' are able to
gain a solid footing and multiply. Likewise, you're healthy and otherwise normal
and 10 sick people around you bring 10 times to concentration of rhinovirus …
and next thing you know, your own body is overwhelmed -- even though you are
WWM: So when
you introduced the Blue Tang, you may have introduced a fish that had huge
numbers of Cryptocaryon irritans -or- you may have introduced a relatively
"clean" fish that was debilitated … allowing the population of Crypt already in
your tank to explode after being offered an 'easy' host.
WWM: This is
why the quarantine is so important: it allows the fish a 6 week period to
re-establish his health in an environment similar to his permanent home.
Temperature, water quality, day/night cycle (even longitude and latitude for all
we know!) are the same as your main tank - and the first real stability that
fish has seen in a long time. He eats, sleeps, heals, acclimates and grows
strong. Then, after the first week of his six weeks, half of his bi-weekly water
change comes from water from the main tank … I personally do 10% twice weekly
for a while and then 20% twice weekly thereafter, so by the time transfer-day
comes along, he's essentially already in the main tank, so to speak.
Re: Ich Attack - 05/11/2012
Thank you very much for your quick and very thorough reply, it is greatly
appreciated. It is probably one of the best explanations I have read yet!
I have a lot of experience losing fish to that particular disease
The reason for not QTing the blue hippo tang is because in one of his articles
Bob Fenner "recommends" not QTing this particular species, but he does, of
course, follow up by saying there is always a risk to not QTing.
Tangs are called the Queen of Crypto. It seems that you can just LOOK at them
the wrong way and they pop white spots
difference of opinion is that Bob is recommending what is best for that one fish
(they react badly to a bad or insufficient quarantine - and they are easily
stressed to begin with) -- MY position is that I'm protecting the rest of the
tank. In my world I protect the tank at all costs. If the Tang is over stressed
or too ill and dies in QT as a result of the QT, then while I admit I did that
to him, I also saved my tank.
Well I landed on the wrong side of that risk this time and will ALWAYS be QTing
from now on.
seems like it's a problem with multiple wrong answers and no right answers,
I have my remaining fish transferred to the hospital tank (after taking out all
live rock to catch them of course) and will continue as you suggest with water
changes, etc. I hope others will learn from my experience (and many others'
experience on your excellent site) that it is not worth the headache, heartache
and cost of not QTing everything wet that you bring in. Thanks again for your
speedy response and knowledge. Last question (since you're a copper guy), do you
recommend CopperSafe or Cupramine? What test kit in your opinion is the best?
Jeff - a few more words on Copper. There are two kinds of copper - chelated and
non-chelated. They have slightly different properties and they test differently.
MEANING that you need to find the test kit you feel comfortable with - and use
the copper of the correct type. I have found that the Salifert Copper test kit
was the most accurate and, as I recall, it tests only non-chelated Copper - so
Cupramine and CopperSafe are out. After all, you'll be test 3-4 times EVERY day.
don't even get me STARTED on the poor quality of test kits!!! Is it just me? Or
does just about every kit manage to produce a color and hue that isn't even
REMOTELY like the comparison panels?
- more to the point, I think it's too late for Copper or Formalin in your case,
Jeff. Copper and Formalin kill living things. The idea is that they kill the
Crypto before they kill the fish. In your case, with a fish that we assume to be
debilitated to begin with, Copper or Formalin might be too much for them.
suggests you look into Quinine Sulfate in this case but you should also look
into hyposalinity: Reducing salinity in the QT tank makes it tough for the
Cryptocaryon to survive in it's free-swimming state AND as an added bonus it
aids the metabolisms of the sick & ailing fish. The best article I've ever read
on Crypt was written by Steven Pro and published in Reefkeeping magazine:
http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2003-08/sp/index.php he extols the virtues of
hyposalinity and explores all of your treatment options as well.
WWM: best of
luck to you
Powder Blue Tang Ick, no
I purchased a rather small Powder Blue Tang, only about
<Mmm, smaller than I'd start w/>
I know that this size is generally not recommended, but he
appeared alert, healthy and was eating. I paid for him and had the
store hold him for three days prior to picking him up. Once home, he
went in my 45 gallon quarantine tank. On day two he developed what
appeared to be ick on his fins.
I removed the carbon pads from my filter, and started
treating with CopperSafe.
<Acanthurids-oids don't "like" copper
exposure. Other treatment means are preferable, gone over on
He is still acting normally, nibbling at seaweed strips and small
amounts of Mysis shrimp. Treatment started 48 hours ago. Water temp is
78, PH 8.2, salinity 32, spec grav 1.024, nitrates 10ppm.. I removed
the carbon pads from my filter, and started treating with CopperSafe.
He is still acting normally, nibbling at seaweed strips and small
amounts of Mysis shrimp.
Treatment started 48 hours ago. Water temp is 78, PH 8.2, salinity 32,
spec grav 1.024, nitrates 10ppm.
<Mmm, keyed twice, or copied...>
Is copper the wrong medicine to treat with? If so what do you
<Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/PBTDisFAQ2.htm
and... the linked files above>
How often and how much water should I change to control water
Will the two pieces of live rock in the tank have to be discarded
after the treatment? How long does this usually take to run its
<... not necessarily, and perhaps a couple weeks to forever>
Assuming I am lucky and actually save this fish, should I
keep him in the quarantine tank for approximately 3 to 6 months
<Will surely perish t/here>
until my 180 setup is ready for him, or move him to my existing
55 gallon FOWLR with a percula clown and 3" Heni butterfly fish?
The 55 has been up and running for a few years with hermits, snails,
coral banded shrimp and green Mithrax crab. Thank you for your
<Better to look before you leap... Look to quinine compounds...
moving this animal through a dip/bath procedure. Bob
Specific Ich Opinion; Crypt
Hey WWM. I'm sure you are delighted to hear that I am having
an Ich dilemma and need your trusty advise on how to go about
this. I read your Marine Ich article as well as some other
research, and found it quite resourceful, but just want you to verify
how I should go about treating my Ich. My clownfish has had what
I am 99% sure to be Ich for about 10 days now. I, stupidly, have
done nothing about it, so I hope it is not too late as the white bumps
don't look nearly severe as I have seen in other fish, and he is
continuing normal behavioral/breathing/eating habits. He also has
never scratched on the rocks or sand (at least that I've
seen). I would have moved him straight into my QT but am a bit
nervous about it seeing as the first and last fish I put in there died
in less than 24 hours even though he seemed perfectly healthy and all
parameters tested normal.
I assume I have to put him in the QT despite this? Also, he and a
Tailspot Blenny are the sole fish in my 29 gallon, and the Tailspot
shows no signs of Ich. Do I need to QT him too?
<... all fishes should be treated, or none. Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasittkfaq2.htm
and the linked files above>
In the same tank? Is there any particular medication you
would recommend or is there something I should be looking for in a
medication before I buy from a fish store?
<Quinine compounds... search, read re on WWM>
What do I need to know before I begin treating?
Is treating completely necessary?
What advice would you give? Do you need any other
information? Thanks so much!
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: Marine Ich Challenges in a large Aquarium
I just wanted to reiterate my appreciation for your insight and
candor. I also appreciate the service you and your team does for
the greater community; and of course, I'm a huge fan of your
book. I really love this hobby and want to get everyone well.
I'll discuss your recommendations with my LFS team and keep
you posted. As I mentioned I have been reading through the
forums, just sometimes you feel your situation is a bit unique and
while I had seen lots of posts on Ich, UV, and Ozone, just wanted to
bounce this off of you for your guidance.
As a side question, in the forums it seems that you are in the camp
that Ich never really goes away completely, just goes dormant, and
hopefully your fish have built up a good resistance when it comes
<Mmm, not altogether... I have seen SPF (Specific Pathogen Free)
systems, and of course their livestock; but hobby systems are almost
always to a degree infested... My fave petfish talk:
In the future, assuming that I do a full QT on all of my new
additions, is there still a high risk of infection for any new fish
after QT when they are introduced into the new tank?
<Not "too" high, given optimization, stability of the
system, life there...>
Anything you can do to mitigate the risk beyond QT?
<Oh, many "things"... all gone over and over as
maintenance aspects... Do read the above citation>
I just want to make sure I do everything I can to not repeat this
Thanks again for all of your help!
Re: Marine Ich Challenges in a large Aquarium, parasitic sys.
Wanted to give you an update and request a bit more of your
insight. So after we last spoke three weeks ago, I decided that I
was going to try to catch/trap as many fish as I could out of my tank
and QT them, but I couldn't bring myself to totally tear down the
<All fishes/hosts must be removed... otherwise act as
At that time, almost all fish had Ich including my tangs,
clownfish, wrasse, Chromis, Anthias, cardinals &c. I turned
off my Ozone, but added the 80w UV to the display tank.
Since then, I've made some really good progress. Obviously
all of the fish I treated in the QT are looking good. The fish in the
main tank have really pulled through (what I couldn't catch.)
I don't see any Ich on any of the wrasse, cardinals, Anthias, or
Chromis in the display tank (very different from 3 weeks ago) and the
tangs look much much better now. I can still see a few spots on
two of the tangs, but it's drastically reduced, and none of the
fish are scratching on the rocks or seem otherwise stressed at
all. All of the parameters (including monitoring the ORP) are
So, thinking forward here.
1, When can I reintroduce the fish I have in the QT into the display
<Any time... but/though the Crypt will reappear if/when the
environment degrades, the fishes are otherwise challenged, very likely
if/when any new are added. Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisease.htm
and the linked files above... Till/do you understand the sort of
balance you're faced with?>
Aka how much longer should I wait either in time or condition before I
start to reintroduce fish?
2, is there a particular order of fish you'd introduce, or a
particular number at a time?
3, I'm particularly concerned about my tangs because even though
they did live with each other prior to the outbreak, I'm afraid
that the ones I reintroduce from the QT might face aggression from the
ones I left in the main tank.
<Such animals should go elsewhere>
I don't think I can take them all out or rearrange the
One idea I had was to put the ones from the QT tank into plastic cages
(with tons of holes drilled) in the main tank when it is the right time
to introduce them so that the tangs in the main tank 1, won't be
able to hurt them right off the bat, 2, they will be able to get
acclimated to them and hopefully won't get aggressive. If you
think that's the way to go, how long would you leave them in those
Two other side questions. Do you believe that Ozone can
deteriorate a fish's slime coat (assuming the ORP is 350-400 mv,
all other levels are at optimum values)?
<Much more likely to improve health at these levels>
Prior to putting the fish back into the display tank, is there
any type of slime coat treatments like StressGuard that you would
<Of no use whatsoever>
My LFS recommended that I catch the fish with a small bucket from the
QT and put it into the DT rather than netting them because it could
hurt their slime coat and make them more vulnerable. Got me
thinking if there was anything else I could do to help the fish better
<In the end, whatever, whenever (time is as fast as the slowest
thing... an important stmt.) that is, it matters naught>
Again I greatly appreciate you insight! I don't want to rush
things, but also looking forward to getting everyone situated.
<... You had your chance, still do, to weaken the Crypt further...
at this junction, are you willing to take the parasitized system
challenge? Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasittkfaq2.htm
and the.... B>
treatment choice, Crypt, rdg.
It looks like I am having new outbreak of white spot in my fish only
system (+ 1crab which could be relocated if really had to).
It€™s not very serious yet but don€™t want it to get worse.
I am hesitant between using copper or hyper
I€™ve tried hyper salinity once in the past without good result
(maybe because I was frightened to lower SG value enough and for long
enough. Keeping 0.010 for 6 weeks seemed to be a bit extreme). In the
end I€™ve used copper which sorted the problem out.
Which method is more stressful for fish in your opinion? I do realise
that the copper is toxic but are fish really designed to sustain low
salinity without impact on their health?
I would greatly appreciate your help once again.
<... this is all gone over and over on WWM. Search and read before
writing us... or just start here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisindex.htm
scroll down... Bob Fenner>
Chloroquine and G. personatus
I haven't written here before but have great respect for Mr.
Fenner as I "grew up" with his name as one of the
authorities in the field.
<Monty Python quote: "I'm not dead yet!">
I've searched your forums and was bogged down in the
Hopefully you could direct me to some authoritative links on
Chloroquine (di/phosphate or sulfate?) dosage and methodology for
treating parasites (crypto) for marine fish. I'm
planning a month's treatment to zap all the life stages of
<Mmm, the sum total of what I know is posted here:
and the linked files above. Do contact the folks that do the
commercial bit (linked in the upper right tray)>
I'm treating a large fish-only display tank with some very
precious Hawaiian endemics in it and wanted to do it
<I see... the Genicanthus...>
I've been prepping for copper (Cupramine) but then heard
about great success with Chloroquine.
My prep work was in reality a stall because I just didn't
want to copper this system but have concluded that I must treat
the main DT somehow (fallowness is not an option-must keep fish
in DT). Lo and behold- arrives my answer in the form of the
drug that gave me vivid nightmares back during my early forays
into Central America. I seem to understand that a powder is
to be used by weight at something like _g /_gal along with usual
replacement for water change and removal of C, UV and
What is the WWM consensus?
<Posted... as usual, not universal. Do note the ref.s to BobG
new work, the second ed. of Noga...>
*About the system:*
I've recently inherited responsibility for a large
quirky system and am in the process of restructuring and
streamlining the plumbing and filtration. Design faults in
plumbing and filter component placement have resulted in a
minimal flow through the DT along with under-gunned UV, skimmer,
etc. components have led to persistent crypto.
<And you've exhausted means to boost their
Only the two Butterflyfish show external symptoms and a
very rare flashing/scratching by others. Eventually as I
make all the changes I want the system should be optimized and QT
protocol followed. For now I need to medicate to ensure as
clean a system as possible as I have more precious fish that have
been through a rigorous QT and they have to go in by the
beginning of March.
There is an excessive amount of permanent fake reef structure in
DT and while I removed the cowries and my refugiums I want to
eventually return these along with other invertebrates- besides
the dosing and stress effect on animals' health I'm
always leery of residual copper
<Mmm; a valid concern>
(I'm really a coral guy and a true fish-only tank just seems
kind of bare). Hopefully Chloroquine is good....I've
read extremely conflicting info online about it. What other
treatments might you recommend to help purge the system?
<... not purge unfortunately... but diminish... Please read
and the linked files in this series (above)>
I was thinking a malachite/ formalin dose at
sometime as well.
<Mmm, decidedly NOT. Too toxic, staining... I'd use only
in a transient bath/dip, going into a non-infested
I must assume that the current residents could have
internal parasites or any number of non-apparent maladies and I
want to do a kind of QT (to the extent that I can) to the DT
since it is just not feasible to remove the fish.
Thank you so much for any help and sorry for not posting this in
your usual format...I'm kind of old school and still getting
used to communicating on forums...
<A hu'i hou! Bob Fenner>
Ich question, Crypt sys.
I am currently treating my fish for Ich (not the different part of the
question). The display is running empty with just the inverts in it. My
question is about these inverts. I have some coral frags that I have
been holding for a friend. Since my system cannot accommodate them for
an extended period, I need to get them back to him for fear of losing
<Yikes... I'd be searching for another aquarist, perhaps a shop
to hold these in the while>
I already find a few frags that are in need of more suitable
conditions that my tank cannot provide. I assume doing so is risking
his system as well?
<? Don't know what it is you're referring to here... That
trying to provide these conditions might endanger your other
Would the frag possibly carry Ich over to his tank?
<Oh yes... anything wet can/may>
I realise that they cannot be infected <infested... infections deal
w/ lower life forms> but that the associated water may well be a
carrier. If so, is there any way to dip/treat them to prevent this?
<Not practically, no>
Any advise <advice> on the above would be very useful. I
currently dip all coral in CoralRX prior to adding to the system but
imagine that since this treatment is directed at coral pests it may or
may not have any impact on Ich.
<Not much, no>
75 gallon reef
pH 8.1 (night), 8.3 (day)
<I do so wish you and I could do some version of a/the "Vulcan
mind-meld" Paul... much (too much) to mention re your
possibilities here. What do you intend to actually treat these fishes,
system w/? Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/reefparfaq2.htm
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
Re: Ich question 1/26/12
Wow that was quick! Wasn't expecting a response till much later so
thanks for that. I suspected as much but thought I would ask the
<But you'll settle for us just the same!>
As for treating the fish, I currently have the 4 fish (yellow tang,
sifter goby, Royal gramma and percula) in a 30 gallon QT and am
treating with copper. About 10 days into the treatment and all seems
well so far. Have a bit of experience with Ich from my early days in
the hobby (so many dead fish, so many busted tanks....so many bottles
of rum to drown my sorrows!)
so am quite confident of managing it.
The coral on the other hand, I am seriously concerned that it will not
it through. The main system is heavily stocked with primarily
<Winners in the chemical allelopathy game by and large>
I have not had a single issue with this reef in the last 4 years until
this temporary coral came into the tank. Suspect it brought Ich with it
and now I know better. Unfortunately, I would feel just wrong about
exposing an LFS or fellow aquarist to possible infection so will likely
pay my mate for his frags and see what survives 8 weeks from now. I did
think of an alternative
and would love your thoughts. I can setup a small 10 gallon tank for
<IF they'll fit...>
I could use system water to start with and slowly over the course of 2
weeks (daily 10% changes) separate the frags out. I figure this is a
better solution than letting them go in my current display. Would you
<Mmm, don't know... as I can't see the frags, what
you're writing about>
I would have a lighting issue to address but need to weight the
odds between chemical war and poor lighting. Which do you think is
<Can't tell Paul; really>
<And you, BobF>
Cryptocaryon Outbreak/Mandarin QT
Crew. Thanks for the great site with a wealth of information. I have
attempted to do my research ahead of time regarding my question, but
still am somewhat uncertain how to proceed with my problem. I recently
added a Yellow Tang and Royal Gramma to my reef tank.
<Mmm, for our outside viewers... w/o dipping/bathing,
They both appear to have an outbreak of Marine Ich. I also have a Flame
Hawk and ORA Target Mandarin.
<Sensitive to chemical treatments>
The Mandarin and Hawk are showing no physical signs of Ich.
<Typical... very slimy... still carriers, infested>
All fish are still eating well. The Royal Gramma has periods of
flashing that come and go. My question is regarding QT.
<Too late for that>
I know conventional wisdom is to QT and treat all fish, and leave the
tank fallow for 4-6 weeks. My concern is the risk of QT for the
Mandarin. He eats all day on live rock. He does take prepared food also
(blood worms and Spirulina-enhanced brine). I have read that it is more
difficult for both Mandarins and Flame Hawks to get Ich, but it seems
they still can get Ich and at minimum be carriers. So do I remove all
fish, treat with hyposalinity, and keep the tank fallow for
approximately 6 weeks?
<Is one approach>
Do I leave the tank as is and hope the infected fish fight it off?
Do I remove the Tang and Gramma only? Do I remove the Tang,
Gramma, and Hawk only? If I don't remove all fish isn't there a
high likelihood that Ich remains in my system indefinitely?
I feel these are very difficult questions because presently the
Target Mandarin is doing so well and the QT process may do more harm
than good to this fish. Any insights into my dilemma are greatly
appreciated. Thanks. Anthony.
<Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasittkfaq2.htm
and the linked files above... until you understand your options more
clearly. Bob Fenner>
Was: Re: Stocking list , opinions
please? Now: QS failed Crypt treatment 11/14/11
Hello again Crew,
Bad news, we broke out the champagne too early: the tang suddenly broke
out in Ich (visible) again two weeks after I sent you this message
(still in QT). I tried a repeat treatment of the Quinine same as last
time but at day 5 of this dose she is still covered and
I have a nasty suspicion that the quinine has actually not worked at
all, and all I have observed in reality is the Theronts leaving the
fish to infest the substrate. Because there were no tomites in the
water already, being a freshly setup QT tank, there would have been
nothing to re-infect her for a week or so until the new tomonts hatched
and re-infected her.. I think this may be what has happened.
<Does appear so>
Now at day 5 of the second quinine treatment I'm seeing no change
like last time , re-enforcing my theory. I'm really bummed.
<Time to switch to another treatment mode... CP or chelated copper,
the last perhaps along w/ reduced SPG>
I've put a UV steriliser on today (36W) to fry the tank a bit
before I do a water change and hit with a third 5 day 30mg/L dose of
quinine (without UV of course). I've also begun slowly dropping the
salinity in case I need to go down that path instead. Just a couple of
questions if I may?
Do you think I should:
a. Do a 25% water change, hit with third quinine dose, Lower the
salinity to 1.015 (as per CMA) over the next few days?
b. Do a 25% water change and lower the salinity to 1.015 over the next
few days - forget the quinine?
<Am more inclined toward (b) so far...>
c. Do a 25% water change and hit with a dose of quinine again - leave
d. Start drawing on some more of my chemical arsenal and try copper and
<The Copper (chelated product) and lowered SPG are my choice>
Appreciate your help
<And you your patience, sharing. Cheers, BobF>
Re: Stocking list , opinions please? QS failure, Crypt
Appreciate your advice/time,
I thought it was generally advised against to use copper with
hyposalinity due to copper being more toxic at lower SPG?
<To extents yes>
I've started lowering the SPG further anyway, but many (e.g. Steven
Pro et al) seem to think that 1.012 is a more appropriate level than
1.015, some even advocate as low as 1.008?.
<Yes; my lower limit is 1.010>
I'm currently shooting for the 1.012 as a compromise as I only have
the glass bulb hydrometer so accuracy is not pin point
Do you think it would be dangerous to dose quinine or
Metronidazole/Praziquantel at the same time as the low SPG?
<I do not; unless the fishes are badly compromised...>
Really nervous of copper use , my Cu test kit sucks as far as I'm
concerned with the colour gradients being all shades of vague copper
colours I can barely discern and huge differences between them. I
managed to kill the last fish I tried to cure with copper, but this was
combined with a temperature spike to 29 degrees C on a particular hot
day, so not sure which killed it, Cu, heat , the Ich or most probably
the stress of all three at once.
<I don't know either. Copper is dangerous, no doubt... and
maintaining useful concentrations in marine settings is difficult...
Less than 0.15-0.20 is of no use; more than 0.35 often deadly>
At the moment I'm leaning towards hitting it with another dose of
<Do please read here... re warning signs, incidents w/ QS, my
urgings to use CP instead: http://wetwebmedia.com/QuinTrbFixF.htm
and the linked files above>
Hyposalinity and trying to feed Nori and Mysids soaked with Jungle
Internal Parasite Guard (Metronidazole, Praziquantel and salt) and
Seachem reef fuel. This Jungle product is directed to add to the water
, but I have read that these are only effective if ingested and I have
no idea how to dose this stuff for feeding as it is compounded for
adding directly to the water
Do you have any knowledge of this product and how I might dose it
<Not enough, no; thankfully marine organisms "drink" their
environment (more than fresh)>
(for the fish that is.. not me ;-) )
Should I try just adding it to the water?
<Yes I would>
Last thing, I DID feed the fish live brine shrimp, and have read that
these are possible carriers for Ich. Any thoughts on this as the cause
<Can be a source... Hence my usual suggestion to soak all in
freshwater for several minutes before offering>
Thanks for the continued support ,
<And you for your further shared intelligence and related
Re: Crypt, QS failure 11/17/11
Sorry to drag you so far through the saga, but I think this Ich
incident might have finally driven me round the twist and I need an
independent view point:
<Glad to provide it/this>
Today, all the visible Ich signs have gone again except for
scarring/scratch marks, and I have only got as far as lowering the SPG
to 1.015 at this point! Three days ago I'm sure the fish was
<Mmm, may well have simply "cycled off" the host fishes...
as you're familiar w/ this parasite's life cycle...>
This, in combination with a 36 w UV running
<Mmm, do remind me: you did have the UV off while treating w/ the QS
at 450lph,24hrs daily for four days on an 85L tank with
substrate/ornament removal and re-placement (plastic bases/pvc etc.)
every second day is the only thing I've done since
the second Quinine dose failed to clear up the Ich. What is going
<Sounds like "bad" Quinine... or the UV, or?>
Could I have misdiagnosed the second outbreak and it was actually
Amyloodinium/Scar tissue/secondary infection et al?
This time there had to be plenty of all life stages in the tank, so
can't be just the normal ICH peek-a-boo cycle again yeh?
<Maybe not plenty of life stages... could be largely/only
I wondered if perhaps the residual Quinine has acted a bit late on the
fish this time (8 days effect, after dosing with a 30% water change at
day 5), or if I was just seeing the spots etc. long after the parasite
was gone,..... or if the substrate removal and UV is really being so
effective (with a modestly low SPG)?
<Let's hope for this last>
it's doing my head in trying to work out what I'm seeing.
I don't know whether to just sit and watch (default position for
now) or hit it with another Quinine and/or Metronidazole/Praziquantel
dose just to be sure.
<Mmm, I'd at least continue to lower the Spg>
I find it hard to believe the Ich has just up and vanished from the
little extra I've done, so I'm scared there will be a third
sudden relapse, what do you think I should do: wait or treat
Also if I do treat with Quinine and/or Metronidazole/Praziquantel at
1.014 SPG do you think I should halve the dose I've used for
<Mmm, I'd treat at near full dose, but keep a close eye on your
<And you, BobF>
Re: Crypt, QS failure 11/17/11
Yes I had the UV off while treating (and actually only have a low 9w
light above the tank in a dark room as well to avoid denaturing the
quinine (only just enough to see by )
<Well, "a swing and a miss">
I usually have to check the fish with a torch.
I'm going to try the stubborn approach and hit with a third dose of
Quinine today. I think I'll leave the Metronidazole as a follow up
to this after a water change as I don't want to stress the fish
more than absolutely necessary. Will let you know the results
Thanks for the help
<Welcome R. B>
Something is horribly wrong! Please
advise! Crypt, hypo... trouble 11/4/11
Hello Bob and Crew at WWM,
I am sad to say that I've got Crypt...again. I believe that I
introduced it by not quarantining my ROCKs long enough. I had them
quarantined for 12 days during which I did three water changes. I think
if I just stand out in a lightening storm, I would have the luck of
being stricken and I would deserve it! Since my last bout with Crypt, I
have religiously quarantined my fishes, corals, clean up crew for at
least a month if not longer. I blame myself for trusting my LFS that
the rocks are "clean"...
I am ten days into hyposalinity, and in my seventh day at 1.008 or 10
My pH is stabilized with bicarbonate at 7.95 which is where it normally
hangs around at without supplementation at 30 ppt... It is a 225 gallon
with a 13 gallon fuge and 13 gallon sump. I've been doing at least
40 gallons of water change every other day. The Crypt went away on day
two at 10 ppt, but here is the really strange thing and I cannot figure
out what it is that I'm missing.
Every day, one of my fishes would die.
<Combination of the Crypt (exsanguination), debilitation and low
This started three days ago. The first was my Starry Blenny. I just
noticed one evening that he suddenly looked stressed, was sitting in a
hole and breathing rapidly. I checked my ammonia level and it was 0.25
0 nitrite, 20 nitrate and noting that while in hypo, the tests are not
accurate. I immediately did a 40 gallon water change leaving it at
1.008. Next day, he was very lethargic and died.
On examination of his body, he seemed perfectly fine, but his mouth was
<The loss of RBCs, oxygen carrying capacity>
Yesterday, I found my coral beauty dead behind a rock. I thought maybe
someone picked on her and in fright, she got herself stuck...on
examination of her body, again looking fine, but she looked a little
<The hypo, osmotic leaking>
and again mouth was gaping open. Today, my husband noticed that my Kole
Tang was swimming very very quickly in circles counterclock-wise. I
took her out of the tank and tried to increase the salinity a little to
1.010 thinking maybe it is a reaction of some sort,
she died within four hours of starting to swim in circles. On
examination of her body, I noticed that she was not soft like normally
recently deceased fishes, her fins were all stiffly held erect and
again, her mouth was gaping open. I performed an 80 gallon water change
this evening after noting that my Atlantic Blue Tang was not his usual
self. At first I thought it was because his buddy, the Kole, died, but
he started swimming around looking very vigilant, holding his dorsal
and anal fins erect.
Normally at lights out, he swims near the floor of the tank going
between the rocks but now he is swimming near the top in the
"brightest" corner of the tank. I noticed that my emperor and
powder blue tang goes and checks on him, and something is not
Oh no, now he is swimming couple of feet and turning around and this
tank is six feet long! Okay, he is now just hanging out in a corner of
the tank, which I've never seen him do...
What is going on?
<As stated above>
I've tried to look everywhere and read anything about fishes
swimming like this but none with such a quick death. I don't think
my Atlantic Blue will be with me for long and he will be the fourth
fish who died. I want to know what this is so that I can better help
Please please please help!
<Am generally not a fan of hyposalinity for the many cases/trials as
yours here... but what CAN be done in the short/er term when there is
evidence (not always simply visual) of hyperinfection? Answer: Some
sort of bath/dip (freshwater, w/ Methylene Blue, Formalin, serious
aeration, while present/observing fishes) THEN immediate move to a
chemically bare TREATMENT system... WITH? Quinine of some sort best
nowayears... All posted and gone over and over on WWM... including your
previous brave efforts. Bob Fenner>
Re: Something is horribly wrong! Please advise! 11/4/11
Thank you so much for your reply.
I came home early to start doing water changes as last night as I lay
there thinking and thinking, I was wondering if there was some type of
toxin in the water as the fishes had no change of appetite or behavior
until within 24 hours of their demise.
I would do the chemically bare TREATMENT system with Quinine as I do
have that on hand, but I am leaving for Asia tomorrow morning and that
my pet sitter is very limited in her ability to manage a new system as
that. I'm thinking the "best" that I can do in my current
situation is that I need to increase the salinity. Last night, at my
hubby's encouragement, I increased salinity from 1.008 to 1.010. I
was thinking of keeping it there for the next 10 days as that is how
long I will be gone, but now I'm thinking maybe I should increase
it to 1.012 now and 1.014 tonight roughly 12 hours later.
<Yes I would do this>
I know it is not the BEST but do you think that it is better plan than
to keep it at 1.010?
The poor Atlantic Blue is still with us...sort of, laying on his side
and breathing regularly but I think it's all brain stem function
now. The Emperor Angel, Powder Blue Tang, Cleaner Wrasse, Flame
Hawkfish, and pair of Clowns (who are caring for their batch of eggs)
all appear "normal" picking at rocks, the algae sheet that
I've put in there interested in their environment.
I cried and cried and cried yesterday and tried to tell myself that
these are just fish which I do love to eat all the time...but they are
no longer the yummy dish when you get to know each and every one of
their personalities and their interactions with you.
Thank you, always, for your insight, knowledge, and support.
One of your biggest fans,
<Steady on my friend. Realize that you're doing all you can.
Re: Something is horribly wrong! Please advise! Crypt,
I just wanted to give you an update whilst waiting for my flight to
The Atlantic Blue died yesterday and after doing a total of 160 gallon
water change and increasing salinity, things are much improved. I even
made a total of 120 gallons of water for my friend at the LFS to use if
Now that there is absolutely nothing for me to do, I've done a lot
You are absolutely right about the salinity and the general poor
condition of the tank that caused their demise. I just wished that I
written you much earlier when I lost my Starry Blenny and I may have
prevented the other lives from being lost.
One thing that I remembered from my last battle with Crypt was that I
was at 1.012 for three months and noticed that every four weeks or so I
would get two or three very small tight spots on the Powder Blue, then
when I raised salinity up to 1.018 was when I had another outbreak.
<Yes... a friend in the trade (and co-author of a recent book on
fish disease) related that he keeps all his Fish Only service accounts
at 1.010 AND a titer of free copper. I was very surprised... as these
conditions to my experience often lead to troubles>
I then read Leebecca's (sp?) account on ReefSanctuary.com about
1.008 and I lowered it that time over several days and kept it there
for 117 days which was when I successfully fought off the Crypt
infection with no loss. I counted myself lucky that time and this time,
I went too fast and too drastic in the lowering of salinity.
The infection was not so bad that the fishes were so
"deathly" ill as they were all eating well and not showing
worse for wear, except that I saw spots. I should have SLOWED down
things and do more sitting and watching, maybe my little friends will
still be with me today.
It was the worst for us to lose that Atlantic Blue Tang as we got him
as a beaten up little guy the size of a silver dollar, still bright
yellow with that blue ring around his eye. Watching him grow to be a 8
inch giant with beautiful coloring that he changed with his mood, or
literally fighting with him whilst trying to place rocks or corals as
he tries to move them for me...
Thank you again for your support.
Marine Ich - Whitespot... in established
Hello... I have been recommended to yourselves by David Perry. I have
Whitespot in my 4ft x 2ft x 2ft tank. In there I have leather corals,
sun corals, various soft corals i.e. mushrooms and feather dusters,
plus 2 anemones. Also have 3 cleaner shrimps, 2 peppermint shrimps, 1
porcelain crab and 1 common crab, 1 large maroon clown his/her smaller
mate succumbed to the Whitespot, 7 small green chromis, 2 tiny blue
cheek gobies one larger blue cheek goby, one juvenile Queen Angel and
one cleaner wrasse.
The tank has been up and running since July 2011 prior to that we had a
90 litre tank.
I have read several articles on Whitespot and Im getting overwhelmed by
the information. I would like to know what is the best solution to
getting rid of the Whitespot.
<There is no one. Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/reefparfaq2.htm>
This has mostly affected the yellow tangs and powder blue tang that we
had for which sadly they have died. Is there any safe reef solution out
there to eliminate the problem.
We have a sump underneath our tank which we run a skimmer and have
tried Ozone, we currently don't have a UV but again reading
articles this is something that comes up as being a positive to have in
your tank. The water from the tank when it drops into the sump does so
via two filter socks.
Our queen angel did have Whitespot but he/she has survived and has no
spots all now.
<Acquired immunity of sorts>
We have considered the quarantine tank method but have been put off by
not wanting to cause any more stress to these creatures. Any help would
<And you, Bob Fenner>
Re: Marine Ich Treatment 10/20/11
Thank you. I read through the entire Ich section.
<Nah... too much to read in such a short period of time>
Pardon my ignorance, but I thought Cupramine was the best drug for
Please let me know if I am wrong.
<No... is of no use to try helping you (for free I might add). You
won't follow directions. Go elsewhere... and soon. Your fishes are
soon to be dead>
I also know that treating in the display is not recommended, but under
the circumstances it was my only option (I do not have quarters to
quarantine all the fish).
Regarding free ion copper, I had removed pretty much all the copper
that was exposed to the UV, so all the copper I have now is unaffected
Cupramine. By the way, the UV was only on for about a day, but I
decided remove the exposed Cupramine just in case.
The only thing I am confused about is why the angel's eye are
cloudy and why all of the Ich has not yet been eradicated...any
semblance of Ich should have been treated already.
Is it possible the Cupramine is not working properly?
Also, what is a Quinine drug? Any suggestions for a brand name?
Re: Marine Ich Treatment 10/20/11
Thank you anyway. When I said I read everything, I did not mean
<Then... you don't understand what's recorded here>
I have had marine fish for 3 years and have had 6 tanks. I have battled
with Ich before treating with Cupramine but in QT.
<Ahh, the only place for this... NOT, NEVER in main/display
I have not only read the Ich section but have read about 75% of your
entire site over 3 years. I have also read, several times for that
matter, your book.
By the way, I am willing to pay for your time, as I trust your site and
<No need to pay; we're happy to help... IF people are
communicative and willing to listen. B>
Re: Marine Ich Treatment 10/21/11
Ok I read through the quinine sulfate section. I have honestly never
heard of it. I have ordered some and am having it overnighted. I will
add carbon and do a 50% water change. When do you think it would be
safe to add the quinine? Do I need cu to read 0?
>As soon as you have it<
I thank you for referring me to the treatment. I honestly thought
copper was the best cure; at least it is sold that way.
I have absolutely zero inverts in my tank (the copper would have killed
them long ago)...so I am assuming I should not have an ammonia spike.
Re: Marine Ich Treatment 10/21/11
Also do you recommend quinine sulphate or Chloroquine phosphate?
Hey Crew! Crypt ed. 101
I have a Blue Hippo Tang that had a bad breakout of (Ick) that I moved
to a quarantine tank.
<The main/display tank is still infested...>
I had also had my yellow tang with her because she had some Ick also. I
lowered the salinity and they have been there for a little over two
their Ick is gone and they are eating, but the blue hippo has a small
fleshy (hole) on her head between her eyes. The Nitrite levels
<Beyond deadly toxic>
and the Nitrate levels are 80ppm in my quarantine tank
so I moved my yellow tang back to my large tank
because she is doing so good <well>!! And of course I have done a
small water change using replacement water from my large tank.
My question is should I move my Blue hippo to the main tank,
since I am struggling to get the levels back to normal on my quarantine
tank? My main tank levels are all "0". I'm not sure but I
think my quarantine tank may be recycling...
<Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/quarsysfiltrfaqs.htm
and the linked files above. To avoid delays in future do learn to/use
the search tool and indices on WWM. Bob Fenner>
Re: Stocking list , opinions please?
Hello again crew,
I come to you with a heavy heart today. The introduction plan we
discussed has gone very badly and I may have reached the end of my
Marine fish keeping journey.
Apologies for the long email, if you want to cut to the chase, the
first half is mostly reference history , the last half is the current
issue Following the anemone puree incident in my last email and
premature removal of the two Bannerfish in quarantine into the display,
the Anemone recovered quite well, and very swiftly considering it lost
more than a half of itself. One of the two Heniochus died shortly after
introduction (not very surprised, it never actually looked as
healthy/active as the other) and the second was very healthy and happy
for a couple of months, right up until the now very healthy Entacmaea
set up an impressively cunning trap in a strong current channel which
swept said Heniochus to a tentacle doom while I was at work. Died of
acute anemenation and was consumed (by an anemone no bigger than
itself, no less).
I resolved to buy from no-one unless they would agree to quarantine the
fish as a batch (of 5) for 4 weeks after arrival in store before I took
them home (one per week). Rang every LFS in Melbourne's east (about
15) and finally found only one who would agree to do this (I even
offered to pay people extra to do it). To cut a long story shorter,
they ordered 3 H. acuminatus and a Paracanthurus, and Zebrasoma for me.
This first batch made 3 weeks before an employee killed them with by
rinsing a power circuit. The next batch arrived and made one week
before store reneged on our deal and demanded I come get them or lose
them (should have very much opted for the latter- pity the fool).
Went in and the 3 wimples were covered in Ich. I ended up taking the
blue tang home as she looked just "ok" and following
Bob's advice on the WWM species page, "she" was dipped
and dumped into the display with fervent prayers. I understand this
recommendation (not to QT this particular fish) is a " lesser of
two evils" argument so please don't think I'm blaming Bob
for this advice, but unfortunately about 7 days later (yesterday) she
broke out in (visible) crypt from top to tail.
<Yes; well put>
OK...case history done, now the complicated bit..
As a just in case measure I had moved my Maroon Clown (my baby for over
7 years) into my QT tank, so that if the tang WAS diseased at least
"he" would be safe
Glad I did this, but now I'm kind of stuck. I've got nowhere to
put another QT tank to treat the tang (I'm working on getting power
to an insulated room in my shed with two spare tanks in it for this,
but may come too late) We are heading into the Australian summer and
can't set up anything uninsulated due to heat
The LFS assures my it must be my tank (surprise) and "swears
<Mmm, sulfa drugs are very old-school... Quinine compounds are the
which I've not seen recommended as being effective against crypt
much at all, but given my limited options on reef Display treatment ,
I've thrown some in anyway as a hail Mary, ordered a UV steriliser
and started lowering the salinity (only to about 1.019- 10.017 as
I have softies) and messing with light cycles.
The basic idea here is I'm trying to make the parasites life as
miserable as possible in the hope I can find a solution to my QT
problem to treat the tang properly and let the display go fallow (she
is the only occupant).
I'm even trying other desperate hopes like feeding garlic, and
dividing the tank so that she doesn't sleep in the same spot each
night to make it harder for the hatching tomites to find her (thin, I
Gave the tang her first Formalin/Meth Blue FW dip today which she did
not like at ALL
<Ah, no... don't do this (though I have accidentally)... splash
some in your eyes... Burning!>
(Spit water , Aerial tricks and torpedo impersonations, play dead etc.)
I bore it out for about 4 minutes before I ran out of nerve (not long
enough I know) and pulled the pin (the dip was 1 ml/litre of 37%
Formalin and 2.5ml of Meth Blue in 10 litres of PH/temp matched FW
aerated/circulated overnight and aerated during dip) can you please
verify no mistakes here?
I've got Cupramine but don't want to use it on this fish (in QT
of course), have rang numerous vets trying to get Quinine diphosphate
with no luck yet, still trying .... very. IF I can swing some miracle
with a second hospital tank I'll use this, otherwise......... back
to eye of newt, faith healing etc.
<And ten jumping jacks>
I'm not sure if there's anything else you can throw my way, but
I'd appreciate it if there's any other tricks you can think of
to combat this.
Essentially , after so many failures at purchasing healthy fish (and
other typical failures), I just can't stand watching them die
anymore and if I can't cure this one, might just give in to
increasing spouse pressure (my QT
tank is in her pantry.. not good) to abandon this vice due to the
stress it creates. I have never yet successfully cured a fish of Ich so
I'm not very hopeful.
<Well... if we could go way back, before lowering spg, placing toxic
medicines... I might have tried a purposeful cleaner>
Man! all I want is for someone to at least commit to selling me healthy
fish and maybe I'll have a chance
Any pearls of wisdom would be very appreciated, apart from actual
divorce I'm desperate to save this fish (who by the way is eating
and swimming as if nothing is wrong at all , not even glancing or
panting, probably should have mentioned that sooner- sorry)
<Hang in there Rama... you're doing about all that can be done.
Re: Stocking list , opinions please? 10/17/11
Hi again Crew,
Sorry just one more thing, I have been able to locate a chemist that
sells Quinine Sulfate ("Quinate") and a vet who will script
for it, but have read comments like this:
*I have been treating this tank with Quinine Sulfate.
<Do try Chloroquine phosphate next time...>*
*from Bob, implying that this is not as good as Chloroquine
Could you clarify for me please?
<Both can/do work... many more fans currently for CP.
White spot mistake. Crypt prev., Infested
Dear Wet Web Media,
Here comes the all too familiar story of Marine White Spot Disease.
First off the background story. I had a 120 gallon tank with a red sea
Sailfin tang. I added a flame angel and it had ich. I know this was a
mistake and I learned the hard way. I scrambled to set up a quarantine
tank but unfortunately it was too late and the flame angel died. I
quarantined the tang a 5 days ago but found him dead today. He had no
sign of any type poisoning at all so I'm assuming he died of a
secondary infection. My question is how long should I wait until adding
new fish to the main tank again.
<Mmm, depending... mostly on whether you'd like to/can raise
temperature, lower salinity... a few to several weeks>
Also, until then how should I keep the bacteria population from
<Minimal feeding of proteinaceous food... a pinch of flake, dried
food every few days>
I did observe that the fish were clean in the morning then infested by
the end of the day which makes me think it was the short life cycle
strain of white spot.
<Mmm... a more complex possibility... but if this explanation gets
you by, okay>
I have the temperature at 80. Finally, don't worry I learned my
lesson on quarantine unfortunately it was just the hard way. Thank you
for all your help and time.
<Mmm, do read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/cryptprevfaqs.htm
and as much of the linked files embedded as you can gain from>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: White spot mistake. 9/29/11
Dear Wet Web Media,
I would love to get fish in the tank asap (without jeopardizing the new
fish obviously). Therefore I would be willing to try one of the two
options you gave me. I am just worried if my Ricordea Florida, chili
coral and my snails and crabs will be ok with hyposalinity or the raise
What do you think.
<Better to take the longer route... NOT modify the env.. Six weeks
fallow (sans fish hosts) will get you as close to 100% as you're
likely to go>
Also, what are the more complex possibilities you
mentioned I am curious and want to know.
<The spots observable from parasitic irritation are a reaction by
the hosts... their reaction is based on a few factors... initial health
(genetic and ontogenetic/developmental), impinging, impacting elements
of the environment ("water quality", nutrition, social
factors, light intensity...), as well as your alluded to
"strength", strain of hyperinfective pathogen/s. BobF>
Quarantine Tank... Crypt
I have not been able to find an answer directly related to my
situation. I am in the process of trying to get rid of ich on the fish
in my 210 gallon aquarium. I am going to move them all to a quarantine
<Not quarantine: treatment>
however, the only spare tank I have is a reef ready 90 gallon with
sump. The sump currently has only a micron bag for filtration. This
tank seems to be much larger than recommended for a quarantine tank and
also not the kind of filtration that is recommended either. I am not
sure how I would keep the water quality stable since it seems there
would be no biological filtration in this system. Will this work for
what I need, or perhaps a way to make it work?
<Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/mardisindex.htm
The fish consist of a Blue Hippo Tang, Vlamingi Tang, Coral Beauty
Angel and 5 green Chromis. I have had all of them for almost 3 years.
It seems that it would not be possible to move them to a smaller
quarantine tank. However, I have never used a quarantine tank before as
all of my fish came from a friend's old tank. So, I have no idea
what I am doing.
I really appreciate any help you can provide.
<And here: http://wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm
and the linked files above... and soon. I'd be looking into using a
quinine compound... and very soon. Bob Fenner>
Re: Quarantine Tank 9/8/11
Thank you for your reply. I am very familiar with diagnosing and then
treating ich and have read those pages several times. My main questions
were whether or not the 90 gallon tank I have is going to work for all
of those fish to be together for so long?
<Can, could, given attn. to water quality as you earlier
Will I end up causing more problems by putting them in this tank?
<Rather than what? Is treating in the display tank impractical...
per quinine cpd.s?>
And, will the sump with a micron bag suffice for filtration on that
tank, or is there a better way to filter for the purpose of treating
these fish since no live rock or other biological filtration will be
<Mmm, no, of a certainty... you'll have to (read re) augmenting
biofiltration in situ or changing out large volumes, or...>
There is no information anywhere answering either of these questions
directly, everything is focusing on tanks in the range of 10 to 40
gallons it seems.
<Here more specifically: http://wetwebmedia.com/quarsysfiltrfaqs.htm
ich course of action, Zanclus
I'll try to keep this as brief as possible, and I apologize in
advance if this message gets a bit lengthy.
<No worries. Take your time>
This was supposed to be a victory speech. On September 17, it would
have been three years that I was able to keep a Moorish Idol, not only
alive, but thriving. He (she?) had grown to a beautiful 7 inches, and
was enchanting to watch for hours on end. I had every intention of
messaging a word of thanks to you for all the knowledge this website
had provided me in this endeavor. That was until my chiller decided to
quit running in the middle of the night about three weeks ago. I live
in Texas, and we have been going through a record breaking heat wave.
It took me almost two weeks to get another chiller ordered and
installed. I was able to keep everything alive but the Moorish Idol and
a Flame Anthias. The Moorish Idol went from eating its morning meal, to
not eating dinner, to gone by the next morning. I was heartbroken. In
my state of despair, I made a rash decision and ordered another
specimen. It was being sold as Hawaiian collected (my previous one was
<Both good sources>
The only problem I had with the first one was getting it to eat New
Life Spectrum dosed in Selcon. It took me four weeks, but eventually he
began to enjoy it. Since that had been a relatively painless
acclimation process, I justified ordering another. Knowing the
sensitivity of this fish, I didn't quarantined the first time
around, so I didn't this time either.
Again, noting the sensitivity factor, I did not do a freshwater dip
prior to releasing him into the tank. I acclimated him for five hours,
floating him in the bag, adding a little tank water every 10-15
minutes, with only actinic
lights on. Upon release, the new fish showed no signs of stress, and
was eating Selcon soaked Spectrum on the second feeding the following
day, interacting peacefully with everybody else. None of the tank mates
are overtly aggressive towards him. On the second day after release he
had Ich. The only sources of stress I can see is the female Naso Tang
seems to sometimes shadow the Moorish Idol, and at times hovers around
him flexing her dorsal fin.
<Mmm, I want to add a statement oft-sent re "residual"
stress in aquatics, particularly fishes. They very often don't
"react" immediately, as do tetrapods/amniotes... advanced,
mostly "warm blooded" terrestrial animals... Their reaction
series behaviorally, metabolically are often delayed by a few to
several days. In practical terms, the stress your Zanclus received in
capture, handling, shipping is likely at play here...
Not what you did yourself>
No nipping, or fin whipping by the Naso at all. The other source just
seems to be the general activity going on in the tank. My first Idol
was acclimated when only the Anthias, Angel, and Wrasse (who stays
buried a lot) were present, and they were much smaller. The Tang and
Butterfly have certainly added movement to the tank. The Coris Wrasse
has been buried since introducing the new Moorish Idol, so I'm
still unsure how that interaction will be. The tank is a standard 180
gallon tank with about 150 pounds of live rock in the middle of the
tank (off the back wall). The current list of fish are -
3" Potters Angel
7" Coris gaimard Wrasse
5" Naso Tang
4" Raccoon Butterfly
(2) 4" Flame Anthias
(2) 3" tank raised Ocellaris Clownfish
3" Moorish Idol
All fish but the Moorish Idol were dipped and then quarantined for a
month before introduction into main tank.
<Wish you had done this for the Idol as well>
The last fish added prior to the Moorish Idol was the butterfly (for
Aiptasia control) about 6 months ago. The oldest fish are the wrasse
and the angel (about 4 years now). The tank has never had an outbreak
in the 4+ years it has been running. It was upgraded from a 90 gallon
tank that had run fallow for 6 weeks. I know this website is in favor
of isolation and quarantining of all fish in the system to a hospital
Unfortunately, the next largest tank I have is a 46 gallon bow front.
That is never going to be large enough to house everybody. An employee
of LFS that I respect said the stress of going into the display tank
and basically dismantling all the rock to remove fish might prove to be
too stressful on the Moorish Idol.
He is still eating New Life Spectrum Thera+A soaked in Selcon, and only
seems mildly irritated by the infestation, twitching every now and
then, and only a slight rapid breathing. I have not observed any
scratching on the rocks at all. She said to try lowering the lights
(which I had already done), and suggested a hyposalinity method in the
display tank. Instead of quarantining and using a chemical treatment,
she suggested that boosting immune system of the fish would be enough
to stave of the infestation at some point.
Regarding such a delicate fish, do you guys think this is advisable, or
would you suggest I start pulling rock out, and make every attempt to
<I would likely not do so... would attempt treatment in place... a
in advance for your help. This website is tremendous, and I have spent
endless hours enjoying it immensely.
<Do please read here (and soon) re:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
Re: ich course of action, Quinine cpd.s/DSBs
Thanks for pointing me towards a Quinine treatment. I have been
feverishly reading posts and articles written on QS and CP since
yesterday. I am extremely hesitant to add either one of these compounds
to my DT.
<... what alternatively can/will you do?>
Something of concern that I failed to mention yesterday specific to my
set-up, is that I have a 6-8" DSB to accommodate the Coris Wrasse.
One post mentioned a possible cascading effect to the biological filter
from die-off on the LR.
Would this also be a possibility with a DSB? I see no mention of these
two compounds' effects on a DSB anywhere.
<Do at times effect mostly crustaceans...>
Would you still recommend (albeit not ideal) this treatment with a DSB
<Again; amongst what other choices? Are you considering just
waiting, seeing if the infestation will stabilize of its own accord?
Hyposalinity might well cause such a disaster.>
The Crypto seems to be getting worse on the Moorish Idol with each
night, yet he still seems only mildly irritated by it. Today is now day
5 since noticing the infestation, and I realize something must be done
soon, or my choice will be made for me. I'm off to see if I can
find Bob Goemans and/or Ed Noga's books locally.
<Was out w/ Lance Ichinatsubo (BobG's writing partner) and Ed
just a couple weeks back for the second Fish Health Conference at
UNE... Do look for Noga's second ed.... both can be purchased
online (Amazon et al.)>
Also, stopping by LFS to see
if they have any advice on Quinine, and have also emailed National Fish
Pharmaceuticals on concern about DSB. Thanks again for the advice.
<And you for this follow up. BobF>
Re: ich course of action 9/2/11
Just another update as to my situation. I was able to net the Moorish
Idol. I guess those few years in the aquatics department at Petco long
ago paid off. I was able to get him away from the rock, and corner him
against the glass. There was very minimal stress involved, it took only
a couple of attempts spread hours apart. I have him in a bath of 5
gallons from the DT and 15mL of Seachem Paraguard. He's been in for
35 minutes, and am waiting another 25 minutes as prescribed on the
<While aerating the system I hope/trust>
He's going into the before mentioned 46 gallon tank. It has been
running for 6 months housing a Caulastrea colony that the B/F had taken
a liking to after depleting the Aiptasia in DT. It is the only coral I
have left from a reef set-up years ago, and was debating what to do
with it. For now, at least I have the Moorish Idol out of the DT, and
will start setting up something smaller to house the coral. From here
on out he will receive FW dips with Methylene Blue if I see any more
<...? What about the infested display?>
This has been the only technique that has proven effective for me.
I'm hoping to quarantine the Moorish Idol for 30 days, and keep an
eye on DT to make sure no other fish have an outbreak.
<... the system is infested>
Hopefully, at that time the Moorish Idol will have a strong enough
immune system to go back in the DT. The DT is running a UV sterilizer,
so hopefully that will at least control the population of the present
parasite. I'll keep you posted. Thanks - Kit
<Best of luck. BobF>
Suspected case of Ich
I think I may have made an expensive mistake. I started out with a 40
gallon Jebo tank in which I kept a blue tang,
<This species needs more room than this>
cinnamon clown, and a damsel in. I recently purchased a used 135 gallon
aquarium. I hired a guy from a fish store to tear down, deliver, and
set it up at my home. The original owner admitted he had not changed
the water in 7-8 months after he had the cash and it was loaded in the
truck. The water was sucked into a holding tank on the guy's truck
and he suggested I keep most of it and do a 30-40% water change which
we did. My blue hippo tang that I have had for 3 years will not leave
the cleaner shrimp, he didn't really eat today, but he ate
yesterday. His normally black stripe is yellowish, and he is not really
even swimming around anymore. His eyes are also cloudy. I also
purchased a yellow and Sailfin tang-( which I noticed has Ich as well),
coral beauty, niger trigger (no noticeable signs yet), and 9 chromis
fish which have all died except two. I also lost a blenny, black
saddleback clown, and a Hawaiian wrasse. I guess my questions to you
are: 1. Are all my fish going to die?
<Mmm, hopefully not... at least not in the short term>
2. Is there something immediate I can do?
<Yes... treat this system, these fishes...>
3. Can I use my 40 gallon Jebo tank as a QT for all the fish?
<Too late for quarantine... now treatment>
4. What medication do you recommend? Copper sulfate?
<Quinine compounds are preferable if you can secure them ASAP. Read
and the linked files above. TIME IS of the essence>
5. Will medication kill the Ich if it is in my Jebo tank that I'm
going to use as a QT?
6. Can Ich attach to live rock?
<Yes, anything wet>
7. I started
using Ich Attack
in the display aquarium, but have read that it is ineffective...is that
true? 8. Is 30 days long enough to leave the tank fallow? Your advice
would be greatly appreciated.
<You should learn to/use the search tool and indices on WWM. Do the
reading NOW, act ASAP. Bob Fenner>
Re: re: suspected case of Ich 7/4.5/11
Hello Mr .Fenner, <Rhonda> thank you for everything you do and
your last quick response. I am a newbie at fish diseases and have been
reading voraciously for the last 3-4 days on marine crypt and quinine
sulfate. I have ordered quinine sulfate as per your advice and am
waiting for it to arrive. Today is July 4th and I believe it will not
be shipped until tomorrow. The water quality in my DT is at 8.2 ph, 0
nitrite and ammonia, but high in nitrates (80-160 ppm hard to tell
which color it matches), very close.
<I would be changing a very large percentage of this water out,
doing what you can easily do to reduce this concentration to below 20
Environment in many ways/measures is a strong co-determinant of
In all the reading I have done it gets more confusing because people
have different opinions and experiences with Ich and qs. I have a
couple more questions for you...Does the qs effect the biofilter,
stripping it of bacteria that keeps the ammonia under control?
<Generally no; this is one of the chief advantages and differences
between the use of Quinine cpd.s and copper>
Will using it have any permanent effects on my DT?
Are there after effects of using qs on my 135 gallon FO display
<Quite possibly yes>
If I use this QS, what else should I be monitoring, or especially
monitoring, as far as water quality?
<Aspects of nitrogenous accumulation, pH, RedOx, but most
importantly, the behavior of your livestock>
Does the qs make the ph spike, if so, how often should I check the
<Once a day should be fine... about mid-day (not early AM>
My blue hippo tang pulled through his
first bout or cycle of Ich and is swimming and eating a little more,
but he still hides out by the cleaner shrimp. He has not been breathing
for 2-3 days now. Can fish survive on their own with no treatment?
<They can and do at times... Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/parasittkfaq2.htm
and the linked FAQs files above in the same vein>
Should I turn the skimmer off while using qs.
I have it off now while I was using Ich Attack, I know you said it was
worthless, but using until the qs gets here...I feel I need to do
something!! I bought Voogle first aid for fish to put in water to help
boost their immune system,
<Am unfamiliar with this product>
Garlic Guard and Vita Chem to soak their frozen food in, Anti-Parasite
medicated fish food. With the high nitrates, what percentage of a water
change do you suggest I do?
<As much as you feel comfortable with>
Should I vacuum the sand as well, and is it ok to bleach the sand and
put it back?
<Vac, but don't remove, and no bleaching>
I also bought Algone, but was waiting until I did a water change to put
it in the filter. I think I mentioned there is a huge amount of live
rock...will the rock effect or absorb the QS or interfere with dosage
<The rock, sand, what is in it... will absorb the quinine, most any
Should I run carbon in the filter to get rid of residuals in water?
<... you should treat the fishes elsewhere... Thought we/I'd
gone over and over this with you...>
Is there any more info I should know that I haven't asked or
mentioned to your knowledge that will help me do a better job?
<... just to re-re-refer you to the sections on WWM re>
And two more questions...(: I have been purchasing saltwater which can
be quite an expense in the long term. Is it necessary to buy a reverse
osmosis machine to make one's own salt water or can I buy a
filtering system for the faucet?
<... yes, posted>
What is good quality tap water/verses bad, and how can I check it?
<... read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/marine/setup/marsetupindex1.htm
scroll down to the tray on Water/Quality... Please learn to/use the
search tool and indices on WWM... there are tens of thousands of people
who use the site a day and only a few friends with spare time to help
directly respond. What you've asked for to date is all
Thank you, thank you for your help, your time, and advice in advance
Help with a Cryptocaryon judgment call,
Hello WWM Crew:
First let me say Thank You for your wonderful site. I have spent hours
perusing it, and have learned many things that I didn't intend to.
Knowing that I have barely gotten my feet wet in this hobby, I
anticipate a very long relationship with this site.
I have a 2-month-old 12 gallon Nano tank with a 3 gallon reverse photo
period refugium that is my primary filtration (roughly 16 lbs live rock
in the whole system, red Gracilaria in the fuge) I also use chemical
filtration in the form of Chemipure beads. I change 1 to 1.5 gallons a
week (depending on how much siphoning I do). Since the completion of
the set-up cycle, all parameters have been stable. I got Zoanthids and
a small polyp of some kind (short green stars with no remarkable mouth)
as live rock hitchhikers, and have since added 2 Ricordeas, another zo,
snails, 2 blue-leg hermits, and 3 Pederson's anemone shrimp. 10
days ago I added a pair of yellow-headed jawfish (the whole tank has
been designed with them in mind). All have been doing well.
Here is the kicker: 3 days ago I added a firefish from the LFS. I have
been observing his tank there for a month, and he was supposedly on a
separate water system from the other tanks. By now I am sure you can
tell where this is going. Despite looking perfectly healthy, the same
day I put him into my tank he became sprinkled with pin-prick discreet
white dots, head to tail, fin to fin. Despite a lack of other symptoms
(no rubbing, great appetite), I have been assuming it was Cryptocaryon
irritans (sorry for the lack of italics...portable keyboard). Knowing
that my tank had already been exposed, seeing how healthy he otherwise
looked, and not having any meds on hand, I decided to wait a day whilst
devising a plan. The spots were completely gone the next morning,
developed during the day, and then were gone the next morning. This is
the third morning, he is spotless, and has remained "clear"
all day. The jawfish have remained "spotless". So, was this a
mild case of Ich that has now been suppressed?
Or something else?
<Likely to return, just going through it's lifecycle.>
My conundrum is whether to dig everyone out (for the jawfish this will
require complete tank disassembly as the burrow is under my rock),
treat the fish in QT and allow my tank to go fishless for 6 weeks or
leave well enough alone. My instinct is to do the latter...I hate to
stress out symptomless fish.
<I would watch closely for now, be ready to remove fish and treat in
a hospital tank if the symptoms return as I think they may.>
My concern is whether the Crypt is causing organ damage to my fish, and
risk to any new fish (my tank is pretty much at its limit, but I may
add a tailspot blenny after it matures for several more months).
<You are definitely full now, perhaps overstocked, I would not add
more fish to such a small tank.>
I know that in the end the judgment call is my own, but I am hoping to
benefit from someone with more experience with this disease.
Help with Ich in a tank housing a banded cat
Hello. I have been doing a lot of research
<Brooke... a lot? How is it you've ended w/ the too-much mix of
incompatible life here?!>
but I am at a standstill I have an 85 gallon with a
Volitans, snowflake eel, round ray,
<Incompatible, and likely a cold water species>
2 Niger triggers and a yellow tang. We were doing great until we tried
to add a Radiata
<And a cat shark?... ? All this in 85 gallons? No. You need at a
minimum twice these gallonage, two systems.>
it wasn't doing well and if was ultimately removed and lost. Now
one if our triggers is showing some white spots on it's body. Still
eating well though. No one else is showing any signs. I have read to be
safe we need to treat all fish and with my selection that means quinine
sulfate or Quinacrine hydrochloride.
<Chloroquine Phosphate would be better... Read here:
Problem- I can't find them anywhere.
<... and the linked file/s above, particularly
I called fishyfarmacy.com and they are out as well and have no
So should I take the fish out leaving the scaleless in the display and
treat with copper ?
<I would definitely NOT>
Is the Ich always going to live in my tank?
<Who knows if this is even really Crypt?>
I really appreciate any help!
<Do read... write back if you have questions. Bob Fenner>
QT/Marine Ich/Sanitize Questions, 5/5/11
First, thank you for providing this service.
<Thanks for writing in.>
I purchased a purple tang from a wholesaler in Los Angeles 5 days ago.
I brought it home and acclimated it using a slow drip line in 5 gallon
bucket. It is in a 40g QT tank with 2 clowns and a Banggai cardinal,
also obtained from the wholesaler.
On day 2, the tang had a few white spots on it. Looking at photos on
your site and others, it appears to be marine Ich (Crypto). I
researched as many sites as I could, talked to 2 local fish store
employees, and also talked to a few local hobbyists whom I respect.
Since they were already in QT, it seemed that the two best options for
treatment were copper or hyposalinity.
I picked hyposalinity because I preferred to not dose the fish with a
substance like copper if I could avoid it and didn't have the
copper and test kit, but did have a good RO/DI system.
<Copper and tangs generally do not mix well, but hypo has it's
I personally would have gone with one of the quinine drugs with this
set of livestock, http://www.wetwebmedia.com/quinmedfaqs.htm
The clowns and Banggai have not shown any signs of Ich to date, but are
still in the same tank (I felt if they were exposed to the tang who has
Ich, they were clearly exposed and should be treated as well).
I couldn't find anything that said how quickly I should take the
fish and water down to 1.010 SG (my target). I did a 5 min FW dip, and
then took 2.5 days to lower SG to 1.010, afraid to shock the fish. I
figured this was the best way to proceed since I did find information
that said that when going back up to 1.024-1.025 SG after treatment, I
should a couple of days - so in the absence of information about how
fast I should lower SG, I took this rationale and applied it in
reverse. I then read (today) an article on your site that recommended
prepping the water, a short FW dip, then immersion straight into
<Down is easier on the fish than up.>
So question #1 - was my mistake (slowly lowering SG) something to worry
about? Am I creating some type of hypo-resistant strain of Ich? Should
I keep going, or abandon, slowly raise SG, and then treat with
<It should be fine.>
Question #2 - If I am to keep going with hyposalination, how long
should I keep the water at 1.010 SG?
<That is the trick with hypo, it needs to be there for a minimum of
4 weeks which is generally one lifecycle of the parasite. If the SG is
allowed to go up through evaporation or mistakes it is all for naught,
so be vigilant.>
Question #3 - How should I sanitize nets, buckets, strainers, etc.,
that come into contact with tank water from the QT tank? 1:10
bleach:water solution? Soak? For how long?
<Rinse in fresh water and allow to dry completely. You could use a
mild bleach solution if it makes you feel better but the parasite
cannot survive in a dry environment so that should be enough.>
As always, thank you for your help.
Re: Marine Ich 4/17/11
I have a 210g FOWLR tank with 150 lbs of rock and the following
inhabitants... False Personifer Angel 7", Flagfin Angel 5",
Coral Beauty Angel 3", Flagtail Blanquillo 6", Purple Tang
3", Dog Face Puffer, 5", and Maroon Clown 3". SG-1.019,
pH-8.3, Temp-78 degrees, all controlled by a Reefkeeper lite for
The tank has been up and running for 1-1/2 yrs.
Ok, here we go... Last week I bought a 7" False Personifer Angel
from my LFS, (I didn't quarantine her)
and she's now showing signs of Ich. Just so you know, I had a mild
Ich outbreak about 6 months ago, didn't have a QT so I dosed the DT
with Quinine phosphate and in 10 days the fish looked wonderful. I
understand dosing the DT is a huge no no, but I panicked and like I
said, had no QT at the time. Yesterday, when I first noticed the spots
I immediately dosed with Quinine phosphate again. I also just invested
in a 55 gallon QT setup which is now up and running with bioballs
seeded from my DT. A little too late but better than never I guess... I
realize now that my tank has been infected for some time now and that I
must let it go fallow for 8-10 weeks. My question is since I dosed the
DT should I just wait till they (hopefully) get better to transfer them
to the 55 so I can let my DT clear up?
<For what purpose?>
Maybe it'll be less stressful for them then?
Also, do you think my 55 QT will be big enough for all my fishes for 10
Does my Flagtail Blanquillo need sand in the QT? I'm gonna put
pieces of PVC for them to hide in so hopefully not. The Quinine says to
wait 5 days then do a water change and re-dose for anything over 125
gallons. But I've been reading that people do it every three days
and re-dose accordingly?
<... once treatment w/ CP is sufficient...>
I'd greatly appreciate any
advice. Thanks so much!
<Keep reading, till you understand. B>
Re: Marine Ich
Ok, by CP do you mean Cupramine?
My understanding is that my Dog Face Puffer will not tolerate it which
is why I went with the Quinine... I thought they might have a less
stressful trip to the QT after the treatment as opposed to right this
moment. The DT is already dosed so why move them right now? And the
purpose of moving them is to let my DT go fallow attempting to rid the
tank of Ich once and for all. There is no excuse for not having/using a
QT however I don't think QT would have helped in this situation
being that my DT was/is infected with Ich already.
My fish seem to have gotten somewhat tolerant of it and just scratch
from time to time. I guess the U/V helps keep it under control a little
bit. The Angel has already lost her spots, not quite "salty"
looking yet, so maybe I caught it in time?
They are all eating, and the pH is constantly being monitored and
buffered when needed. Just so you know, I do read a lot in your site. I
was just hoping to get useful advice. What size QT do you
Should I just get another 55 and split the fish up that way? I'm
sorry if I'm being a pain. It's been a tough day for me on many
Re: Marine Ich
Thanks or the help...
Re: Marine Ich 4/20/11
Just an update and a few questions.. Well, I'm on the 5th day of
treating with Quinine Sulfate in the DT. I thought it was Quinine
<Chloroquine?> Phosphate, my mistake. Anyway, all of my fish are
fine except the Personifer. He's still covered with salty Ich every
morning, then by night time he's only got a few spots. I was hoping
to not see many spots this morning being it's the 5th day, but
he's still covered.
He's moving around, but not accepting any food for 3 days now.
He's not breathing heavy, but he extends his gills outward every so
He doesn't seem to be terribly unhappy at this point. I'm
thinking about what I should do next... My thoughts were either do a
water change and re dose with the quinine, or give him a
pH/temp/salinity matched RO water bath then a 8-10 second Methylene
Blue bath and then put him into quarantine and start treating with
Cupramine. The store I bought him from I just found out "runs
copper" through all of his tanks,
<More common than not>
thus masking any parasitic disease the fishes may have.
<Mmm, hopefully treating epizootics rather than
What a sweatshop, I'll never buy from him again. I just know if he
went back to his tanks, he'd be fine in a day. But we had a falling
yesterday. I confronted him about the Ich, and he of course replied,
"He was fine here" with a "con man" type of smirk.
Then I confronted him about his use of therapeutic copper in his tanks
and he just freaked out, I guess because his customers were standing
there... So there's no going back there. He has a convenient
"no return" policy...
I know, why did I buy from him? I'm still asking myself that... As
you can see I'm really at a "touchy" sort of crossroad
here and could really use some expert advice... Thanks so much in
<... welcome. B>
Re: Marine Ich... treatment choices; Cu vs. QS
Thanks for the quick reply! You guys are awesome.
The bottle says Quinine Sulfate.?
<... why did you state otherwise?>
And just to clarify, should I water change and redose or take him out
and give him baths and treat with copper in QT.?
<? Keep reading. On WWM... re Cu and Quinine use. B>
Thanks so much!
Re: Marine Ich 4/20/11
Sorry, I get them mixed up. I just needed an answer to a very serious
problem. I am/have been reading, but I don't want to watch this
fish die while I search for the exact answer to my problem. I was just
looking for your expert opinion.
Thank you anyway.
Jay... sorry to state, but you have not provided enough data to do
anything other than direct you to study what we have archived. It
will/would just take too long for us to go back and forth trying to
thresh out your situation. The choice of treatments/moda is up to you
(of course). B
Re: Marine Ich 4/20/11
Understood... I just can't figure out why the Quinine Sulfate
hasn't worked on this one fish?
<Mmm, could be a few influences... absorption (the list is long,
again...), poor/low concentration of the product you're using, a
hyperinfective state of the causative organism...>
I've had great success with it in the past.
<Welcome Jay. B>
Marine Ich and what really to do, read --
I have a question or two regarding the treatment of Ich. My g. loreto
seems to have it, the usual signs. Scratching/flashing, hiding under a
powerhead, white spots, was eating fine until last night when I tried
brine shrimp with spirulina to get my C. Argi to eat. I have two other
fish in the tank, a A. percula and a C. Argi. All the tank parameters I
test for are normal. Nitrites 0 Ammonia 0 pH 8.1 Alk 10.0 dKH my
nitrates are a little high at 10 ppm. I corals ranging from Sps to
softies as well as shrimp, crabs, snails, starfish. None of the other
fish are exhibiting this behavior. The C. Argi was my last fish I added
two days ago (this Ich thing was going before that and I'll explain
more in minute). I think I covered the basics of the tank I hope. The
g. loreto is 4 tank years old by the way. I noticed the gramma had
these symptoms a couple weeks ago but the "Ich" disappeared,
it went back to normal before I had a chance to treat it (that is how I
ruled out the C. Argi being a carrier). However over the last 3 or 4
days (before I got the C. Argi), it has returned with a vengeance. This
morning it was covered in white spots. No I did not QT the C. Argi and
yes I made a mistake in not doing so. Now my question is though, what
is the best approach to treating?
<... really... removing all fishes elsewhere (to a treatment
tank)... and a Quinine cpd. Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/cryptcures2.htm
and here: http://wetwebmedia.com/QuinSciUseF.htm
and the linked files above...>
Copper is out due to the angelfish, and Hypo-salinity has mixed
reactions even on WWM. Also I think I read that hypo-salinity isn't
very good and potentially dangerous to clownfish (A. percula in my
situation). So please advise on what to do.
Thanks a ton guys
P.S. I know I just got my Cherub angelfish two days ago and I have
tried feeding three separate foods. Brine with spirulina, spirulina
flakes and mysis. I know its only been a couple days but this is a fish
I have been waiting to get and I have read they are pretty hardy. I
think this is normal but any advice on how to entice it?
<Use the search tool on WWM>
I should have quarantined retrospect but what's done is done. This
is my "prize" fish. I have taken an extreme liking to pygmy
angels and this seemed to be the less like to nip at corals and stay
the smallest (potentially the one of the most aggressive)and be the
most hardy and ready to except prepared food.
So I am being an over protective parent. Sorry for the long winded
Re: Marine Ich and what really to do 3/15/11
I want to thank you for a fast response and an update. Unfortunately I
wasn't able to read your reply until today 15th due to an emergency
on Friday. With said emergency I was unable to treat my little gramma
and he or she passed that day. I waited too long to treat. Again,
thanks for the advice and help
Help, Crypt, reading
I made a stupid mistake, and added a fish with no QT set up. Now
it has caught up with us and we acquired what we think is marine
I bought everything for the QT and set it up and placed a sponge
in my sump to seed for added biological filtration.
I am now ready to perform a hyposalinity treatment
<Not a fan>
(we chose this because it seems to be the least stressful and we
have a cherub angel which from what I have read are more
sensitive to copper treatment).
<This is so... though I'd be treating w/ a Quinine cpd....
Have you read re on WWM?>
Our clownfish is showing classic symptoms of marine Ich and the
cherub angel was, but the speckles have since went away.
<Mmm, they're simply "cycling"... as a singular
life phase. Will be back>
Now it seems to have fin rot or even MHLLE. I'm not sure what
has caused the degradation, hence my writing to the WWM Crew.
Skin is deteriorating and the fins are looking worse every
I am attaching pictures as reference.
<Could be "just" the infestation>
Let me add that originally we had a Springer's Dottyback
which fought with the angel when we added him/her. This lasted
until we were able to remove the Dottyback. It took about a week
to catch it, but we did and have since returned it to our local
fish store. The angel has some torn fins and wounds from the
fighting. The Dottyback was wounded as well, but healed within a
few days- whereas the angel's wounds seem to be getting
We began feeding garlic/Selcon soaked food to keep them healthy
while the QT was being set up. All are eating well and seem
happy. Besides the fact that our angel has befriended our pistol
shrimp in an attempt for a good cleaning (the angel has mistaken
it for a cleaner shrimp, we think). I have been doing a 15% water
change about 2 times a week and all parameters are great.
I am hoping to get a better diagnosis and direction as to the
best treatment method. Could this be a secondary infection
brought on by marine Ich?
I am really grateful for all the help the Crew has given us
hobbyists over the years. Thank you for your valued time.
A Fellow Reefer,
<Do read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/cryptcures2.htm
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
Re: Help 2/27/11
Thank you so much for your fast response. I have never heard of
Quinine Sulfate, so thank you for the information. I do have a
question though, I found the medication on a website linked in
the threads referenced in your prior response. The administration
directions are as follows:
"Fish Disease Treatment: 1/4 teaspoon per 10 gallons of
water. Treat one time and leave in the water for 7 days.
For resistant Ich in a central system, treat once every 7 days.
One treatment will usually do it, but if you need to treat again,
do a partial water change and run the medication for another
week. Do not mix any other medications with this treatment as
they are not compatible.
Turn off protein skimmer and u.v. light. Use 50 Grams per 800
If we are to leave the medication in the water for 7 days, how do
you suggest maintaining the appropriate ammonia levels while in
<If you find a water change is necessary, you'll have to
readminister the equivalent dosage of QS>
I've read that we should be doing daily if not twice daily
water changes during this time and possibly use an ammonia
suppressor such as Amquel. What would you recommend? Does
Sulfate hinder biological filtration?
<It does not>
Again thank you for your help. We are huge fans of your work and
<Thank you. BobF>
Niger Trigger Illness, Crypt reading
<And gals Chris>
I have a niger trigger that is just over a year in my system. Over
Christmas, a new fish addition brought in a case of Ich to the tank
<... no quarantine>
that caused fatalities of the new fish, my year old P. Volitans, year
old Clown trigger and (unrelated death) of my 6 month old snowflake
moray eel. There was also an issue with poor water quality, namely the
pH dropped down several points, a full point over the course of a week
while I was out of town, to around 6.4-6.6.
Within several days of finding the extremely low pH, I lost most of the
The two surviving fish in the tank were the niger and my red Coris
wrasse. The wrasse is fine with no health issues apparent, but the
niger has been fighting symptoms of Ich and possibly other diseases on
a regular basis for over a month now. Several times spots have come and
gone, as well as her eyes becoming very cloudy and a total lack of
movement from the fish for the most part. I have tried multiple
treatments for the fish, starting with a fresh water dip initially,
moving into an isolation tank afterwards with Metronidazole dosed,
after the metro was unsuccessful I tried copper (for a very short
period of time, until she was housed into a larger isolation tank)
Herbtana was used in the main display and finally two Methylene blue
dips of less than ten seconds each. Her appetite was healthy still with
food presented to her where she could reach it without having to see,
fed meaty foods soaked in Vitamin-M and Garlic. Over the last week, her
spots have come back and her appetite has gone, no eating that I know
of in the last 5-7 days. The spots seem to change from a dusting like
sand over her body to more of a scaly, rash-like appearance that covers
Today I also noticed that part of her upper streamer on her tail is
starting to degrade.
I am starting a dose cycle of Artemiss, after leaving the tank in a
hyposaline solution of 1.015 and with no medication for the last three
weeks. I also saw today that her eyes have started becoming more
cloudy, with mucous streamers coming off of one of them. I am very
worried about this fish, I have been very attached to her over the last
Asking around with my fellow reef and fish club members in town, also
checking with the LFS has brought no real results except for the
suggestion of writing in to you guys for advice. Anything you could
tell me will be greatly helpful.
<... Read: http://wetwebmedia.com/cryptcures1.htm
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
Thank you again for your swift and informative response, and thank you
for the site. It is an amazing resource for hobbyists with an immense
knowledge base. Keep up the good work, guys
Re: Niger Trigger Illness 2/12/11
Thank you for your response, Bob.
Last night when I came home from work and class I discovered the
trigger had passed away.
Thank you again for your help and advice. I have definitely changed my
quarantine procedures in the last two months, and will not let this
<Life to you, BobF>
sick fish and no answer's... Iatrogenic prob.s, no
reading, RMF 2/4/11
<Capitals?> i have a 125 saltwater reef with a 33gal refugium
that is one year old. I have numerous fish and corals.
a few weeks ago I purchased a yellow eye tang and after a few days he
developed white spots on him.
I thought to my self oh boy here we go, but the next morning not a spot
<Cycled off... cycled...>
a couple of days go by and then again just covered from head to tail
with white spots, and later that day they were all gone again. only the
yellow eye in the tank is getting them. this went on for a week and I
noticed the white spots on him again and a sore, open wound, and
covered with white spots. that evening the strawberry Dottyback was
covered with them head to tail like it was covered with salt
but a clear liquid that kept the white spots off of it about a 16th of
an inch. the next morning both were belly up.
later that day I notice white spots on my clown fish but only a few
very tiny spots. but then my dragon goby later that same day was
covered head to tail and went into hiding, the unicorn tang had cloudy
eyes so I started treating with Melafix,
after two day his eyes cleared up, I caught the two clown fish and put
them in a quarantine tank
<... too late for quarantine>
with copper. I
finally caught the dragon goby two days ago and put him in the qt tank.
he was in bad shape, losing scales and open sores all over. he looked
like he was getting better after one day but died this morning along
with the one clown fish that had it just a little. yesterday my unicorn
tang started getting white spots. very little ones, and he was
scratching like mad.
in fact all my fish were scratching really bad two days ago and now
there not, today the white spots seem to be going away. the hole weird
thing about it is all my other fish don't have a spot on them. ( 3
Anthias Lyretails, 1 watchman goby, 2 cleaner wrasse, 2 dragon faced
pipe fish, 1 big yellow tang, 1 clown tang, 1 emerald wrasse?,
<All subclinical. Assuredly they are infested though>
1 lawnmower, 1 purple sided wrasse, and my pride and joy the unicorn
tang. I probable forgot one or two fish. I thought it was velvet at
first but then thought it was Ich,, still don't know what it could
be. all the fish are eating and in good health. water is all good.
corals are all open. I've lost 4 fish since Sunday morning, two
this morning, not a speck on any of the fish except the unicorn and he
seems to be clearing up, I did install a 38 watt UV light four days
ago. it seems to be making a difference.
have you ever heard of something like this and what do you think it
my daughter has a microscope and I was checking bugs ( microorganisms
in the tank)
<Not there, on the fishes... skin scraping...>
last night but I cant find a book to reference them,
<See works by Ed Noga>
to find out what they are. any ideas? I have captured some of the
images from the microscope on my computer with a electronic eye piece.
cool looking images of copepods.
any help would be greatly appreciated.
any help or point in the right direction is greatly appreciated.
<Start by reading here: http://wetwebmedia.com/cryptidfaqs1.htm
and the linked files above, and here:
and... Bob Fenner>
sick fish and no answer's, ala Alex
I have a 125 saltwater reef with a 33 gal refugium that is one year
old. I have numerous fish and corals.
A few weeks ago I purchased a yellow eye tang and after a few days he
developed white spots on him.
<Oh no! Hopefully he was quarantined to protect your lovely main
I thought to my self oh boy here we go, but the next morning not a spot
on him. A couple of days go by and then again just covered from head to
tail with white spots, and later that day they were all gone again.
Only the yellow eye in the tank is getting them.
<Oh. In the tank, not quarantined. Not good. Since he introduced it,
he shows signs sooner. The others take time to get to the visible
Just like humans and the common cold, we are contagious long before we
This went on for a week and I noticed the white spots on him again and
a sore, open wound, and covered with white spots. That evening the
strawberry Dottyback was covered with them head to tail like it was
covered with salt but a clear liquid that kept the white spots off of
it about a 16th of an inch. The next morning both were belly up. <So
sad. It spreads.>
Later that day I notice white spots on my clown fish but only a few
very tiny spots. But then my dragon goby later that same day was
covered head to tail and went into hiding. The unicorn tang had cloudy
eyes so I started treating with Melafix <Bob does not approve of
this, but I believe it is useful for fungal infections>, after two
day his eyes cleared up. I caught the two clown fish and put them in a
quarantine tank with copper.
<Good. Prevention is the best cure, quarantine tanks are best used
before not after. You need to treat all the fish.> I finally caught
the dragon goby two days ago and put him in the QT. He was in bad
shape, losing scales and open sores all over. <Secondary infections
will need antibiotics also.>
He looked like he was getting better after one day but died this
morning along with the one clown fish that had it just a little.
<Body count 4. The spots don't necessarily indicate how bad they
have it. Their gills are infested before they show spots, if at
Yesterday my unicorn tang started getting white spots. Very little
ones, and he was scratching like mad. In fact all my fish were
scratching really bad two days ago and now they are not, today the
white spots seem to be going away. The whole weird thing about it is
all my other fish don't have a spot on them. <All have been
exposed. Some will show outward signs, some will not. Some may be able
to fight the infection naturally if they are strong and healthy and in
good conditions.> ( 3 Anthias Lyretails, 1 watchman goby, 2 cleaner
wrasses <Please don't support the removal of Labroides from our
oceans. see: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/labroide.htm>,
2 dragon faced pipe fish, 1 big yellow tang, 1 clown tang, 1 emerald
wrasse?, 1 lawnmower, 1 purple sided wrasse, and my pride and joy the
unicorn tang. I probably forgot one or two fish. <?> I thought it
was velvet at first but then thought it was Ich. I still don't know
what it could be. <It could be either from what you describe. Copper
is the treatment for both. But of course they must ALL be removed to
the hospital tank(s) to eradicate it with certainty.> All the fish
are eating and in good <apparent outward> health <except the
Water is all good.
Corals are all open. I've lost 4 fish since Sunday morning, two
this morning. <It is worth the hassle of quarantining to avoid
sacrificing 6+ fish for one new addition. The death toll may not be
Not a speck on any of the fish except the unicorn and he seems to be
<This is good. Hopefully, possibly they have fought it off.>
I did install a 38 watt UV light four days ago. It seems to be making a
<It could be. I have had success eliminating an Ich infestation with
a UV sterilizer and the addition of cleaner shrimp. (or luck?)>
Have you ever heard of something like this and what do you think it
could be? <Many pages of info here. I believe you are on the right
Velvet progresses very rapidly. Most likely it is Ich.>
My daughter has a microscope and I was checking bugs ( microorganisms
in the tank) Last night but I cant find a book to reference them, to
find out what they are. Any ideas? I have captured some of the images
from the microscope on my computer with a electronic eye piece. Cool
looking images of copepods.
<Fun!! I love looking at microscopic tank critters.>
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
<The cycle can continue to repeat even though they look better. Best
to remove all fish to the hospital tank. Keep the reef tank fish-free
for a month to kill all the parasites. Read...
Any help or point in the right direction is greatly appreciated.
<Always quarantine new fish. I have made this mistake too. I
Test your water quality parameters (best to include the numbers with
queries like this), and do everything to provide the best conditions
Read, read, read...
is a good general article and has references cited for further
There are many pages of FAQs about ID of disease links at the top to
This is a painful way to learn to always, always, always quarantine new
<<Also, please in the future use capitalization and proper
spelling and word use (their/there/they're for example). It takes
time that we could be answering other questions to edit so that we can
publish on the website.
Main tank Ich? Marine Crypt 1/19/11
Good afternoon crew,
I hope all is well on your end.
<It's cold here, wish I was diving with Bob in Mexico, but
After thoroughly reading up on the suggested links and consulting
various local fish shops, and giving the fish some time to hopefully
battle the parasites naturally, I have decided I'd rather not take
the risk and force them to battle it on their own for much longer. The
Ich doesn't seem to be getting any better, and the general census I
received from my LFS was "there's nothing you can do"
about treating or even trying to help the fish whilst still in the main
<I would agree with this, treating in the main tank usually causes
even more problems.>
Therefore, I am thinking of moving my blue tang into the 10 gallon
quarantine tank with my Foxface. The blue tang is about 2.5-3 inches,
and the Foxface is about 3 inches big. Would a 10 gallon suffice for
about 8 weeks while I leave my main tank fallow, given water changes
every 3-5 days for these two fish?
<I think you would have problems in such a small tank, a 20 or 29
gallon would probably be more feasible.>
I know both fish require a 75+ gallon main tank (mine is 110), but I am
asking because they won't simply be in there for a regular 2 week
quarantine, but rather a substantially longer amount of time, which is
why I'm worried they might feel very cramped in the 10 gallon
quarantine. Any other suggestions if the 10 gallon is too small?
<To me a 40G breeder would be ideal, they are usually pretty cheap
and you don't need fancy filters and such for a QT so can be done
For the porc, I stumbled upon a suggestion from I believe it was Amanda
(at WWM) to just simply use a large ~20gallon rubber-maid container as
a temporary quarantine while the main tank is left fallow.
<Yes, these rubber-maid tubs work well.>
I know the ridiculous amount of waste porcs create, as when he was in
my 10 gallon, I was literally doing water changes almost everyday, if
not every other day. This is why (and also space issues) I believe he
would be better off in a separate container for himself. Will the
plastic container be safe for the porc?
<As long as it is a "food grade" container it should be
fine, again the bigger the better.>
Or does he need a glass aquarium in order to stay in there for a longer
period of time (8 weeks)?
<Either is fine.>
Also, would it be safe to medicate in the plastic container using
<Nox-ich is Malachite Green, which is pretty rough stuff in general.
The container should be fine, but I would investigate other
medications. One of the Quinine drugs would be my first choice. See
here for a starting point http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2003-08/sp/index.php
Or how should I go about treating the plastic container for Ich on the
porc? I have an extra air pump with airstone lying around, which should
help keep the PH in check (I do this when mixing my water, and it works
great) but are there any other methods I can practice in terms of
filtration, and keeping the water levels stable?
<A simple sponge filter with the airstone is probably best since
most likely the medication will wipe out any bacteria and be only of
marginal use. Water changes are the name of the game here.>
Just looking for approval/thoughts on the steps I have decided to
Anything I can do to the main tank aside from leaving it fallow for 8
weeks to ensure that all the Ich has been eradicated?
<Raise the temp a little to help speed up the parasites lifecycle
when the tank is fallow.>
Thank you very much for any advice,
Re: Main tank Ich? Marine Crypt 1/20/11
Good evening Chris, thanks for the speedy reply.
So do you suggest that I use two rubber maid tubs since the 10 gallon
is too small?
<This would be better.>
Or will the tang be okay in the rubber maid with the porcupine puffer?
Not very likely huh?
<It would definitely be better to split them up.>
Forgive me, but I am just trying to find the cheapest alternative,
school fee's cost a pretty penny or two =(.
recurring Ich problem 1/13/11
<J & G>
First of all thanks so much for your wonderful website. I've been
reading it for about 6 years now and get all my information from
<I do hope/trust not all. A good idea to "scout around",
look for underlying science, rationale>
My problem is recurring Cryptocaryon that I've been fighting on and
off for years. I have a 750 liter marine reef tank with an ecosystem
sump, a skimmer, chiller, lots of live rock and only a few corals at
All my water parameters are good and I'm currently housing only a
few fish: 1 yellow tang, 1 convict tang,
<Social animals, manini/A. triostegus>
1 raccoon butterfly fish, I large algae blenny?, 1 Tomatoe clown and 1
tank bred ocellaris clown. Except for the ocellaris clown - who is in a
treatment tank at the moment and the Tomatoe clown - still in the main
tank- all fish seem healthy, happy and are eating well, with no signs
of Ich. I isolated the ocellaris as he was covered with white spots and
looking bad (I had two and the female died over night). I am now
contemplating of how to tackle the crypt once again.
<Best indirectly... through foods, improved water quality (high,
steady RedOx), and the use of cleaner organisms:
Among many attempts I have once before emptied the main tank and let it
go fallow for 9 weeks, returned the treated fish which were definitely
Ich free, only to see them get infected in the main tank again.
<Ah yes... experienced many times...>
From what I understand from your comments on Cryptocaryon
"daughter colonies of Cryptocaryon can wait for months sometimes
in the main tank" and "once a system is infected it is very
hard to eradicate the parasite completely".
<Yes; this is so>
So I was hoping to strike a healthy balance by keeping my water
parameters good and stabilizing the system, and obviously, most of my
fish can cope with the parasites as they have probably build up
immunity against the Ich.
<I do agree w/ this stand>
However, when I want to add new fish, I go through the quarantine
process, add them to my system - and they get infected straight away!
So here are my many questions:
1. What is the absolute maximum time these critters can hold out in a
fallow tank, 3 months, 6 months, or more?
<Mmm, more absolutely>
2. If I let the tank go fallow will it help to lower the salinity, or
will it encourage the cysts to go into hibernation and wait for more
optimal conditions to hatch?
<You can "speed up" their life cycle or slow it in a few
ways. Lowering the salinity can do both, depending on, again, a few
3. What is the absolute min. spg the eco system with its miracle mud
and Caulerpa can handle? And what about the life rock and few
<Variable by species, condition... 1.012 for the first two, though
the drop may spur on a death event of the Algae. The life on/in/as the
rock can likely tolerate even lower density... Corals... some are very
sensitive; best not exposed>
4. What are my chances of actually ridding the established system of
Cryptocaryon - I know this is a tricky question - but if this was your
system would you try and tackle it, considering that best part of my
fish are actually happy at the moment?
<By optimizing the environment, the health of the livestock through
nutrition... perhaps through administration of CP through foods:
But than, if I don't rid it completely, how do I introduce new fish
to and infested tank?
<Mmm, "carefully"; best by "mixing" water twixt
the systems... over a period of weeks, months...>
5. What are your thoughts on a new treatment from Canada for reef
systems - "Medic - by polyp lab", which is basically
Would the system benefit from this while it runs fallow?
<Have no experience w/ this product, ingredient for the stated
purposes... But not likely (very) toxic>
6. And my last question - I live on the Sunshine Coast in
<Oh! Have a good friend who lives, teaches at University there...
his mum is in Brisbane to the N.>
and get my water from the ocean (okay, not right now with all our
torrential rains and all the flooding, but normally I do get good water
here.) If I were able to rid my system of Ich, would I be
re-introducing it again with the ocean water? If yes, how could I treat
the water to kill the parasite?
<There are a few protocols... which HAVE to be administered w/ CARE.
The best in general is the use of Chlorine (bleach) and its subsequent
(days later) removal via (Sodium) Thiosulfate/Hyposulfite... and
testing! (for free Cl)>
Thank you so much for all your advice in advance, kind regards,
<A pleasure to share Jana. Bob Fenner>
Re: recurring Ich problem 1/13/11
Thank you, Bob, will do. Just to clarify: When you say introducing new
fish "carefully"; best by "mixing" water twixt the
systems period of weeks, months ... ..do you mean, introducing treated
or quarantined fish to the pathogens by mixing main tank water to the
quarantine tank to expose and build up the fishes immunity?
<Mmm, no... sorry for the confusion. I mean/t mixing water back and
forth twixt main/display and QT systems if/when all are deemed to be
In case of the clownfish, once he is Ich-free - and he gets
re-infected, treat again - introduce again, until he gets immune to the
Another question as well. I noticed today along stringy white faeces
hanging of the clownfish, is this connected to the crypt or another
And how long does it take a male clownfish on his own before he changes
into a female?
<Months to never with sparse feeding>
Many thanks again, regards, Jana
<Welcome! Bob Fenner>