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Diploria labyrinthiformis (Linnaeus 1758). Typically hemispherical in appearance. Often with some valleys being parallel, spaced about 5-8 mm. apart, trough-like, appear double-walled. Cozumel 2012 

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General FAQs
Updated 9/29/2014
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Daily Q&A replies/input from the WWM crew: Nate Guerette, Rick Novy, Bobby Rudro, Jordan Stari, Sue Garrett, Darrel Barton,
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Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner
PLEASE: Write reviews of my works on Amazon! I need your input. BobF

Acropora millepora disease identification... scant info.     9/27/14
Hi there. I got some of millepora that just suddenly bleaching out at the tips for no reason. Even though my parameter been stable all the time. Only got spike in nitrate from 0 to 5-6. Phosphate from 0 to 0.1.
<... what other livestock, esp. chemo-photosynthetic is here? All need some/measurable NO3 and HPO4>
But did big wc to lower them down. In addition still battle with red slime lately. Can u help me id the disease. Thanks
<Not w/o more information. Let's have you read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/AcroDisDiagF.htm
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Spotty tiger Oscar and other problems    9/27/14
Hi there my husband has 3 freshwater tropical aquariums, one of them has an albino Oscar, a tiger Oscar, a Kissing Gourami, a Firemouth cichlid, a Nicaraguan, and two Plecos. The albino Oscar has lost some scales on a large area on both side looking almost like flesh wounds and the tiger Oscar has a few small/large white greyish spots on one side.
<Do look at the behaviour/s of the Plec and the Kissing Gourami. Plecs are sometimes seen to attach onto Oscars and other large fish, rasping away at the mucous. Similarly, Kissing Gouramis very occasionally do this too. In both cases the problem seems to be triggered by hunger. Plecs have huge appetites and need a lot of food, particularly "filling" greens (such as lettuce, courgette and sweet potato) pretty much on offer every day of the week. Without these foods, they feel hungry even if they're getting some pellets or wafers, kind of like how people feel hungry even if they've actually eaten quite a lot of protein and fat (e.g., meat) but very little fibre (i.e., fresh fruit and vegetables). So, review what your Plecs are being offered. Perhaps move them away from the Oscars for a few weeks, medicate as per Finrot, optimise water quality (zero ammonia and nitrite, minimal nitrate) and see what happens. Kissing Gouramis are a species prone to starvation in aquaria. They're filter feeders in the wild, and need very large quantities of food to do well. That's one reason they're often tricky to keep, and even those that do survive have a concave profile to their bodies that shows they're underweight. A decent portion of finely powdered
Spirulina flake offered 3-4 times a day will help a lot, alongside the odd algae wafer, frozen brine shrimp, live daphnia, etc.>
And in the second, he has a few Plecos, and some other communal fish, of which the biggest Pleco has a few grey patches but the third all fish seem fine, please could u help me with this as I really have no clue, well to be honest I have a couple but I'm not am expert so not really sure many thanks sheen
<If the Plec has some problems with its body as well, I would suspect water quality. Review and act accordingly. To recap, any tank with an Oscar or a Plec (or both!) needs to be big, minimum 55 gallons for one, 75 gallons for both, and equipped with a large filter. By large, I mean choose a filter from your favourite range that's for the aquarium the next size up; so if you have a 75 gallon tank, choose a filter rated for tanks 100 gallons or more. Make sense? Do also read:
Cheers, Neale.>

Constipated Yellow Bellied Sliders    9/27/14
I have 2 yellow bellied sliders and I haven't seen ANY poop in their tank for a week. This has not happened before. They are very active though and have a great appetite so I don't know what to think. I left them with my mom for 3 days (I haven't seen poop since) and she may have fed them more than I do, but other than that, nothing changed in their routine. What is happening and what should I do? Please answer asap. Thank you!
<How much and what sort of fresh green foods do you offer them? Turtle pellets aren't a good staple, despite the advertising. Stop feeding them entirely, if used, and only offer your turtles fresh greens. Pond weed sold for Goldfish tanks works great. Dump it in their tank, and when they're hungry (which may take many days if they've been spoiled with high protein foods) they'll eat them. More fibre means more faeces, and that's what you're after. Once things back to normal, bias their diet with green foods, using pellets sparingly. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Constipated Yellow Bellied Sliders     9/28/14

Thank you! But it turns out that they do poop, but one of them eats it..which is very strange. I am not sure what that means, but I don't think it is healthy.
<Indeed not.>
But thank you for the diet tips, I did not know that pellets are not enough. I will make sure to include greens in their diet. Do you know what I could do about him eating the poop?
<Nothing directly, but if given enough bulky green foods, as well as unshelled krill and similar crunchy morsels, they should feel less "hungry". Much like humans; the more fibre we eat, the less crap/junk we
snack on!>
Thank you again :)
<Most welcome. Neale.>

Ornate Wood Turtle Update    9/27/14
Hello again! I wrote about a year ago about a turtle with shell rot that was being fussy about her calcium. Just dropping in to say that she's healing up great (no pictures right now). She's got scarring that the vet
says might not fade, but the exposed bone is peeling up, and there's healthy scute growth under it. Now that she's healed, she's really curious and lively, which is a real change from how lethargic she was a year ago.
Thanks for your help and advice, guys!
<Always nice to hear a happy ending! Thanks for letting us know. Cheers, Neale.>

My 4 1/2 yr old RES turtles, i have been leaving them out of water, in the house, and put them back in tank while feeding alone, for almost an year now. They seem to be doing fine with female sleeping around all the time in one place and male moving a little bit here and there in between.
Can turtles mate outside water?
<Not Red-Ear Sliders, no.>
or if they do while in tank when feeding, can they be left on land after that?
<After mating, yes, the female can be removed to another tank and will come on land to bask as normal. She'll swim normally, too. Fertilisation is internal, so after mating it doesn't matter much what she does. Generally though breeding Red Ear Sliders is not recommended for a variety of reasons, not least of which is the fact far more baby turtles are produced than there are people able to keep them PROPERLY. So any eggs produced should be destroyed.>
And they doesn't seem to be eating their pellets these days at all, at least from past 4 days, what can i do about it?
<Wise turtles. Pellets are okay as treats, but not a good staple diet.
Instead offer fresh greens (pretty much any cheap aquarium plant will do, including Pondweed/Elodea) alongside plant-based pellets (Koi pellets are excellent) rather than the typical high-protein reptile pellets. Do have a read here:
And here:
Feeding isn't difficult for this omnivorous turtles, but many, MANY people get it wrong even so!>
Thank you.
<Welcome. Neale.>

Please help me ID these     9/28/14
I found these creatures living all over the walls in the drain chamber of my sump. At first I thought were pods, but after a closer look, I'm nor sure. I wanted to ID them to assure they are not a threat. I found
similar pictures online, but I'm not sure.
<Scypha sponge. Commonly referred to as Q-tip or pineapple sponge. Harmless filter feeders.>
Thank you very much,
<Quite welcome.>

Re: platy foods and plants     9/28/14
What an altogether funny looking fellow this chlamydogobius eremius!
<Quite so. Also suicidal. Keep the tank covered; they jump! Otherwise bullet-proof and very breedable. Czech (?) breeders have a golden morph that appeals to some; worth looking out for.>
I missed the Desert Aquarist Society meeting on the 14th (drat) due to a family issue. However, I have found 'The Guy' at our *Arizona Nature Aquatics* shoppe. He is very knowledgeable also and runs a beautiful, beautiful place. Indeed, as promised on his website, he has, in fact, raised fishkeeping to an art form. Just wait until I win the lottery!!
All's well in the tank. Unexpectedly, two of the babies that I thought were too large to eat, were not. I later surmised this was because Terme was about to birth, *again. *( 'ovarian pockets', indeed). There now seems to be at least one new baby. I will not name this one...I suppose it's goofy to name one's platys and ghost shrimp but I grew up with Walt Disney... The previous, remaining baby, Wozzle, is fending well, appears to be female.
Clear water, no issues, a new plant and a great new source of fishkeeping info. I did upgrade to a new heater that can be *set* to a temperature.
Winter will come on and I don't run the house heater at night or in the day when I'm not here. We can drop to 50's or high 40's in the house at night, ratcheting back up to the high 80's during the day!
<Would suit Variatus Platies particularly well. Also Ameca splendens, Xenotoca eiseni and many/most of the Goodeidae, probably better than standard tropical conditions.>
Neale, I hope that you and all of yours are very well and content. You remain a solid source of info for me as I continue to upgrade my knowledge in this hobby.
<Thanks for these kind words.>
Thank you!
<Most welcome. Neale.>

Fish Space and 1 Missing     9/28/14
Hello. I live in the Arizona desert, on a floodplain. I have an informal, irregullar shaped, 765 gallon, sunken, 45 mil. EPDM liner pond in my backyard. The pond has a ph of 8, a gph of 625, and a submersible filter with a built in uv and a fountain attachment. The pond contains 11 pond goldfish. 10 are comets, 1 is a Shubunkin. There are 3 adults comets, 7 baby comets of various ages, and 1 baby Shubunkin.
Is there enough space for 11 pond goldfish to survive their entire lives together in my pond?
<Should be... with regular maintenance. SEE WWM re>

It rained here last night. We got some hail. All my fish except the Shubunkin have turned up. Do you think the tiny 1 inch Shubunkin is just hiding? Thank you.
<How could I/we tell? B>

back link     9/28/14
I apologize for having to do this. Can you please remove my link from your website?
link: <removed>
Because my site is so green or new I have been severely affected by some of the Google changes that have come out recently. That is why I would like to remove it. Sorry for the inconvenience.
Thank you.
John Riker
website owner

Snowflake Eel / Red Around Mouth... no data     9/28/14
I've had a snowflake eel for about three years that has always acted very normal.
Over the past two weeks has been hiding in the bottom and not feeding much. When he did come out today to eat… I noticed a red color on his cheeks, on both sides of his head. Would this red coloring have anything to do with his recent hermit like behavior.
<... Who can/could state; given the information (lack of) proffered? Have you read what is archived re Echidna nebulosa on WWM? Do so. Bob Fenner>

My Little Puffer     9/28/14
I've Had this little Ocean puffer that arrived with a water change he seamed fine but them I noticed he has what looks like a baby shrimp or a tentacle sticking out of its side I've Googled it and nothing can you
please inform me on this please.
<?... Looks like fecal material to me. Should dislodge of/by itself. Bob Fenner>

Re: Sudden Cleaner Shrimp & Fire Shrimp die-off in Seahorse Tank     9/28/14
Hi Bob, sorry for the delay but I wanted to say a huge thanks for your time & help with our question. Chemical media went in and so far everyone else is doing great!
Thanks again,
<Ah good. Thanks for the follow-up/news. Bob Fenner>

Re: Small Pond Goldfish Pond Survival       09/25/14
Thank you Neale! :)
<Most welcome.>

Re: Favia Has Blister ­ 09/25/14
Thank you Eric for your prompt response!
<<Quite welcome, Karl>>
I cannot remove the coral for dipping as it long ago spread from its original plug to the rockwork.
<<Okay…should still be fine>>
I do not believe that it was a fish as all my fish are completely reef safe (That includes any that are considered reef safe "with caution".) I don't believe it was stung by another coral but I will check tonight to see if any sweepers come anywhere near it.
<<Then likely these are not the cause of this phenomenon (as was the case with my own issue re). I’m reluctant to call this a “complaint” as it may well be a “normal condition” of these animals>>
I will probably pop the "blister" and will keep you informed.
<<Sounds good mate>>
Again, my sincere "thanks".
<<Always welcome… EricR>>

New fish owner- sick goldfish     9/26/14
<Hello Christina,>
I checked your FAQs first, but did not find a post that I was sure addressed my issue.
My veiltail goldfish (Norman) has a white/see-through growth on his head (more cotton than waxy). I thought it would get better when we bought him a 20 gallon tank, but it is still spreading.
<In all honesty, 20 gallons is too small for Goldfish, and certainly a potential source of problems once they're above, say, 8 cm/3 inches in length.>
Initially, he developed a blood red spot on his head that cleared up after every water change, but came back after about 3 days. He has not had the red spot since we bought the new tank, but now the white patch has grown near the same area and spread to his entire head.
<Likely an ulcer of some sort, with a subsequent bacterial infection spreading outwards. Irritation causes mucous production, and dead skin goes white. Could well explain the symptoms.>
Please help. He is active and eats fine. No other fish live in his tank and I use My veiltail goldfish (Norman) has a white/see-through growth on his head (more cotton than waxy). I thought it would get better when we bought him a 20 gallon tank, but it is still spreading. Initially, he developed a blood red spot on his head that cleared up after every water change, but came back after about 3 days. He has not had the red spot since we bought the new tank, but now the white patch has grown near the same area and spread to his entire head. Please help. He is active and eats fine.
<This is a good sign.>
No other fish live in his tank and I use well water to fill it. I do a 30% water replacement every week and his tank also has a filter.
<Good. But do review water chemistry (hard and alkaline is best).>
I do not know his age. Any idea what this could be and how I can treat it? I have attached some photos.
<Well, they didn't come through.>
Any help would be greatly appreciated. We love our Norman and I would hate for him to suffer due to my inexperience as a fish owner.
<Do start by reading here:
My first action here would be to get an antibiotic or antibacterial medication, something fairly general like Seachem KanaPlex or the popular combination of using Maracyn 1 and 2 together (the two products treat
different bacteria, so used together, work even better than singly). Avoid tea-tree oil medications like Melafix that promise a lot but don't consistently deliver. Do test water quality regularly, any nitrite or ammonia above zero will be a problem. If in doubt, buy a bigger filter:
Goldfish are heavy polluters, so a filter recommended for a 20 gallon tank will be insufficient for a 20 gallon tank because such a filter is actually designed for small fish like Guppies and Neons. Instead buy the model a size or two up the range, so a 30 or 40 gallon filter for a 20 gallon tank.
If necessary, adjust the flow rate to avoid too much turbulence, but otherwise a bigger filter will always be better. Cheers, Neale.>

QUEEN ARABESQUE PLECOS L-260; stkg.; sys.; comp.         9/24/14
Have been seriously considering getting this fish but am finding conflicting information.
<Indeed? Do try PlanetCatfish.com. It's by far and away the biggest and best repository of up-to-date catfish information. Has an excellent forum, too.>

I have hard water and have read both that they prefer soft to medium hard and also that they are ok in hard water?
<Hypancistrus species generally prefer softer water. They're less adaptable (or hardy) as, for example, Ancistrus ("Bristlenose Plecs") or Pterygoplichthys ("common Plecs"). That said, if you have the warmth,
excellent water quality and lots of oxygen, they can do well in fairly hard water. I wouldn't keep them above 20 degrees dH, pH 8 though, and ideally 2-12 degrees dH, pH 6.5-7.5 would be about right.>
Secondly, I have read they should be kept as a single specimen but also that they should be kept 1 male to 2 females.
<Quite so. They're territorial. Singletons are easy to keep. Multiple females per male can also work given space for the "harem" to spread out.
Allow about a square foot per specimen and you won't go far wrong.>
I have also read stocking is 1 fish per square foot regardless of sex.
<Indeed, I'd agree with this. Certainly spread any caves or bogwood roots around the tank so the fish can have breathing space apart from each other, especially males.>
I plan on keeping them in a lightly planted tank, 55 gallon with a school of Corydoras and Celebes Rainbows.
<Corydoras potentially excellent companions, but do note more Corydoras prefer rather cool water, 22-25 C/72-77 F, whereas Hypancistrus are happier around 25-28 C/77-82 F. So while "hothouse flower" Corys like Corydoras sterbai would be good, the usual sorts like Corydoras aeneus won't enjoy that level of warmth, and conversely, too cool conditions will weaken your Hypancistrus. Celebes Rainbows dislike acidic conditions and need neutral to hard water chemistry to do well (even thriving in low-end brackish) so they aren't obvious companions for Hypancistrus at all.>
I realize some of the conflicting information is due to the wide range of Loricariidae available, but I would like to get this right for them. I am hoping some of you have kept this fish and can give me some guidance.
<Hope this helps.>
<Cheers, Neale.>

Sick loach      9/24/14
I need some help. I have a growth on my golden dojo whom I've had for three years, and I have no clue what it is or how to treat it. I have attached a picture. It is the brown growth on his fin and also is coming out of his "armpit" for lack of a better word. The brown on his head is his coloring and is flat.
<Yes; not an issue>
The brown on and under the fin is definitely raised. He is acting completely normal. Tank is fully cycled. 20 gallon long with one other dojo, 4 platies, and 4 Oto catfish. Heavily planted with 30 gal filtration.
I did recently acquire some new plants, so I'm not sure if that's the culprit?
<Mmm; can't say... and I'd really not add medicine randomly here... Likely this Loach till self-cure in time without
... and adding such do more potential damage than good..>
Thanks so much!
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Neotropical Cichlid ID      9/24/14
This is my unknown fish, can somebody please help me indentify him.
<... appears to be Hypselecara temporalis. Chocolate Cichlid.>

It was sold to me as a Firemouth, as it started to grow I started to doubt it because its so different from the others.
Really appreciate any help given.

Angelfish sick      9/25/14
I have been searching for answers to my problem nothing is found no matter were I go or look. My angelfish look like they have a cloudy or mold on there skin, not moving that much like the usually do it passes from one angelfish to another after one dies and on some of them they don't have the same appearance's but die? My pH is 7.6 ammonia is 0 nitrates 0 nitrites r 0 and still lost in this whole problem I used amox and a few other things but still no go!
<Do need some information on the environment. While Slime Disease (also known as Costia) is one possibility, irritation that causes mucous production is more likely, particularly if a whole series of fish have died. To recap: Angels need a largish tank (20 gallons for one or a mated pair, 50+ gallons for a group of six) that has been cycled and running awhile (6 weeks, minimum, and ideally a couple months). Water chemistry shouldn't be extreme (farmed Angels are okay between 2-20 degrees dH, pH
6-8) but variation in pH is bad. Likewise water temperature should be stable and preferably a bit warm, 24-28 C/75-82 F. Diet should be varied, no feeder guppies please, but based instead on good quality flake or pellets such as Hikari Cichlid Gold. Angels are delicate when very young; avoid specimens less than 1.5 inches in diameter if at all possible. Some varieties are distinctly sensitive compared to the others, with Koi and all-black Angels being among the more temperamental. By contrast, old fashioned marble and gold Angels seem to be pretty good, as are standard silver Angels. Acclimate all new specimens to your local water chemistry carefully (across an hour or more, e.g., using the drip system).
Cheers, Neale.>

Favia Has Blister – 09/25/14
I have a Favia about one year that has been growing nicely. This morning I noticed an area about 20mm in diameter that has a blister. The soft tissue has separated from the skeleton. It looks like a boil that fluctuates in the current from a wave maker.
<<Indeed…and have seen this with my own Favia coral>>
Yesterday I did change my GFO and carbon. Parameters are perfect and I am growing Acropora with ease in this system. I have attached a photo showing the coral in question.
<<I see this>>
The lesion is on the right side at about the 1:00 O'clock position. Any help would be appreciated.
<<As noted, I have experienced this phenomenon in my own system. The “blister” may be a result of physical trauma (picked at by a fish/crustacean or stung by another coral)…or maybe it’s even a sign of a reproductive event (just guessing here). But in my case, it turned out to be of no worry. I actually ‘popped’ the blister on my Favia coral. It came back within a week or two…I popped it again, and this time the coral healed and returned to its normal appearance. Not saying this is what you should do, but is something to consider. You could also try a dip in something like Tropic Marin Pro Coral Cure. Aside from this, I would simply leave the coral be for now and observe>>
Thank you.
<<Happy to share… EricR>>

Re: Gold Severum floating on its side      9/25/14
You guys have a great web page, my sincere congratulations.
After I sent email, Kept on reading the questions and answers from others, wow so much insight and great information from the experiences of other fish lovers and your great advice.
So... I put in practice some of the advise,
1 - made a partial water change,
<THIS is most important>

2- added some medication
BTW, it was such a pleasant surprise to receive a response but most if all how fast you responded.
3 - followed your advise and moved my 2 beautiful gold Severums to larger quarters (new 55 gal. tank). Fish are happily swimming...
<Ahh; very good>

Keep up the great work!
<Are endeavouring to do so. Cheers, BobF>

Dreaded Lernaea. Thank goodness for quarantine tanks      9/25/14
Greetings Crew, My biggest nightmare came true. Upon receiving a shipment of Shubunkin goldfish, I noticed a fish with what looked like a damaged dorsal fin. Almost looked as if a dorsal ray was protruding.
<Ah yes; quite common in pond raised, reared goldfishes>
I was a little worried about anchor worms but having never encountered this parasite(only heard of), I shrugged it off and tossed fish into quarantine tank. Coincidently I had to go on 7 day trip the following day. Upon returning I noticed all fish were severely infected, some with gaping wounds. All fish have passed away. Now I'm worried about my quarantine tank. I was planning to let tank run without livestock for 30 days. Is it possible that nauplii would die off in this time frame and break life cycle
or should I bite the bullet and treat with organophosphate to be on the safe side?
<Mmm; I'd bleach (chlorine) the entire contents... gravel if present, filter/s... Leave running for an hour re the SOP posted on WWM re sterilizing systems>
Is there another medication I could use in this situation(hopefully less toxic)?
<There are, but the Cl biocide is the easiest, cheapest, most assured way of elimination>
Is there certain times of the year when I should avoid buying these pond fish?
<Mmm; no; not really... in terms of avoiding parasitic issues. >
Thanks as always for the great site. Aloha Brandon
<Ah, welcome. Bob Fenner>

Small Pond Goldfish Pond Survival      9/25/14
I have a 765 gallon, irregular shaped, sunken pond. It is a 45 mil. EPDM liner pond. It is a few weeks over 1 year old. It has a pH of about 8. It has a uv, a fountain, and a submersible filter with a water pump of about 625 gph. 2 of my adult fish died about 2 days ago. A calico Shubunkin goldfish and a big white comet. They got gill damage. They got it from being cooped up with 11 other goldfish. They were in a way too small 50 gallon tank, with no filter or aeration. They stayed in there for a day and overnight. My fault entirely. I should have known better. I got 2 new replacement fish for them today. A little yellow comet and another redheaded Shubunkin. They are both about 2 inches long. I live in the Arizona desert. Will the 2 new fish have time to build up their size and reserves before it gets too cold?
<Should do, but depends on how mild your autumns are and how cold it actually gets in your winters. Remember, Goldfish can feed and metabolise down to 10-12 degrees C, using low protein foods such as wheat germ, but below that they shouldn't be fed anything at all until springtime rolls round and it warms up above 10-12 C. Very small Goldfish may do better overwintered indoors, and your 50 gallon tank should be ample for that.
Mortality of yearling Goldfish can be quite high in cold climates where ice forms over the pond, but Arizona might well be mild enough for yours to do okay.>
Thank you.
<Welcome, Neale (in the UK). Have cc'ed RMF to add a more Southwestern USA perspective.>
<<IF the pond is large enough, deep enough, protected by structure from much influence of (weather) elements... to not vacillate much thermally (see WWM re as always); the biota should be fine here. RMF>>

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