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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

 

Re: Pyramidellid snails       1/23/19
Thank you! Unfortunately I freaked out when I spotted them and disposed of the little suckers before thinking to take a pic. However they look exactly like other pics posted on your site and I'm sure they are Pyramidellid snails (rather than the Zoanthid predator snails).
<Rats! Ok>
I looked through other posts and interestingly, it seems like a big majority of Pyramidellid snails either come in on a tridacnid clam, or on Astrea snails.
<Yes>
This makes me speculate that the ones coming in on the Astrea snails may be specific to that species, or at least possibly specific to gastropods.
<I'd count this as likely>
Since I only have the two Astrea snails in the tank, it will be fairly easy to check them every few days or so for any new parasites. Will be a little harder to check the Nassarius snails since they burrow, but ought to be able to do that as well.
I'm hoping they are specific to the Astrea snails, because that should make it a lot easier to deal with.
*Joanne White*
<Do keep us informed Jo! BobF>

Hoplarchus psittacus not feeding /Neale        1/23/19
Greetings crew. I hope you are doing well.
<All good, thanks.>
Im happy to say I've kept my aquariums in check for some time now. Im writing to you today due to a rehome i accepted.
<Okeley dokeley.>
An adult Hoplarchus psittacus.
<Nice! Not a common fish at all.>
Owner didn't say much why he was getting rid of many of his fish. When it got home i noticed maybe why:
Cloudy eyes and bloody dorsal fin, hole in the head ( mildly) and severe stress, although, i guess any fish as big would also be very stressed. A week in observation in a 60 gal just for him, everything cleared. Good color, no blood, nothing. I received him well fed though, he's around 24 cm, maybe more. After 4 weeks i moved him to the 150 gal south American planted tank: Festivums, yellow acara, fancy Plecs, some unidentified species of big Pencilfish ( 9 cm each).
<A better home. Sounds about right in terms of tankmates. Can't imagine your Pencilfish are really Pencilfish at that size -- seems more likely they're Anostomus spp.>
Problem is, while i saw him take bites out of food in the 60 gal, he never showed much enthusiasm for food, but was very active and colorful. He devoured plants massively though.
<Correct. They are very much like Severums in terms of diet. Omnivores, but appreciate fresh greens. Do also try cooked peas, as well as Spirulina-based flake foods or pellets. They should take good quality cichlid pellets too, such as Hikari Cichlid Gold.>
Now, in the 150, he's become skittish, duller colored, and is not eating, clearly he's beginning to become skinny, you can see a sunken stomach and skinny areas around the dorsal/anal fins.
<One thing is to offer the fish equivalent of crack cocaine, also known as earthworms. Most fish go wild for these, and they are both safe and nutrient rich. Do check the tankmates too. If this fish is being bullied, he may be off his food.>
Its been 2 weeks in the 150 and still nothing. Tank parameters are ph 7.8, gh 10 , kh 14, temp is 25 c.
<These are soft water that probably won't be completely happy in hard water.>
These psittacus were brought a year ago by a store and were considerably smaller, so these have grown here.
<Good!>
Water is changed weekly ( 75%) properly treated. Water service has been cut for quite a while, so im due 1 week of maintenance ( never been a problem, have gone even 3 weeks, since its not overly stocked and there it is full of plants). I tried soaking the food in garlic but nothing works, he does show interest and sometimes takes bites but spits it out.
<Cichlids will often eat anything when happy, but nothing when stressed. So review the environment before worrying about him being picky. Chances are that he'll eat more readily once you figure out what's going on.>
A lot of the time is scared by other fish splashing water while feeding furiously.
<A-ha! He's not going to like that. Green foods that he can graze at a leisurely pace may help here, because the other fish will calm down and leave him alone.>
He's at least 2.5 times bigger than the biggest fish, how is he scared?
<He's a fish! Not that bright! Or put another way, he isn't as confident as you about his ability to take down the opposition.>
I have medicine for internal parasites ( Levamisole) and can quarantine again if need be, but i would really like to know if i can try anything else beforehand ( moving a 24 cm fish is stressful for both him and me).
<See above.>
Food used so far is flake, granules, pellets ( 5 mm size) crumbles. Maybe try a bigger food?
<See above.>
I breed roaches for my frogs, but he isnt interested in that either. Problem is he shows interest but most of the time he gets scared, or just spits the food.
<Indeed.>
The other day i saw him poop and it was a normal, thick poop. Nothing unusual. But, lately ( 4 days ago) he's started twitching his fins, caudal and dorsal, in a way which made me reminisce of mix of shimmies with flaring. He's also started darting, although pretty unusual. Fins are normally extended and he moves around the whole tank, but is skittish to me and active fish.
I link a photo of him currently, i hope you can see it.
<Nice!>
https://scontent.fsal1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/fr/cp0/e15/q65/50927156_10217745459924010_4535587938200715264_o.jpg?_nc_cat=111&efg=eyJpIjoidCJ9&_nc_ht=scontent.fsal1-1.fna&oh=5f55ffb1488e99f27eb520fe3e77fd10&oe=5CFF0E2A
Thanks, again.
<Hope this helps. cheers, Neale.>

Re: Hoplarchus psittacus not feeding       1/23/19
Yeah, they are Anostomus now i think about it. No red fins whatsoever though, so unknown id.
<Anostomus Anostomus and Anostomus ternetzi are the two "common" species in the trade. If you send a photo along, I can try and ID the fish for you. They're nice fish of course, but can be territorial, so one to watch if you're dealing with some social issue.>
Regarding the hard water. I stay away from obligate soft water fish ( wild discus, altums, chocolate gouramies) but i thought the psittacus would be fine since theyve been growing in these waters for over a year, although, to be honest, the store brought 10 of them, but i only know of 3 of them that are still alive, we are a small community of hobbyists.
<Understood..
Do you think it is imperative to ro/ di the tank?
<No. It'll help, but good water quality is usually more important for cichlids than the precise pH and hardness. Large cichlids are often nitrate sensitive, so that's the thing to watch. Oh, and oxygen level.>
I have severam pieces of driftwood leaching tannins. Not sure if that helps. This guy was in a community of big cichlids ( bocourty, vieja spp, Oscars) i figured he would be better with me.
<Almost certainly, but still, something sounds "off" here, so would be watching feeding behaviour closely, and adapting feeding accordingly. Cooked peas and stuff like that can be left in the tank for longer, and shy cichlids will slowly graze on them, even when they're otherwise being pushed around at feeding time.>
Thanks, again, Neale.
<Most welcome!>

Re: Hoplarchus psittacus not feeding /RMF       1/23/19
Thank you for your response. Ill see to move him to the 60, but i guess once he's fine he can be moved back to the 150? He just looked to cramped in the 60, really.
<Yes and yes>
Regarding the hard water. Normally i stay away from obligate soft water fish ( wild discus, altums, chocolate gouramies). I thought rehoming the psittacus would be alright since theyve been in the country living in these waters for a little over a year and even grown. I am 100% sure nobody has given their psittacus soft water, nobody does that here for freshwater, although to be honest, approximately 10 psittacus were brought by the store, and i only know of 3 of them to be still alive. Figures, hoo?
<Might be the cumulative effects of high pH....>
He was kept in a community of big cichlids ( bocourty, Oscars, vieja spp) so i figured he would have it easier with me. Before turning another tank into ro/di, do you think a lot of driftwood/leaves would help as much? I have several pieces still leaching a lot of tannins.
<Yes they would help some; not as much as mixing, blending RO/DI>
Thanks, again.
<Welcome. BobF>

Re: Sick Corydoras sterbai; prob. Columnaris       1/23/19
Neale,
<Matt,>
About being prepared for next time... it's happening sooner than I expected. One of my remaining Corydoras is showing early signs of the same disease (fading of body color and a few light gray spots around the head).
<Oh dear.>
Thank you for your previous responses. On further reflection, I think my diagnosis of Costia was wrong, and your suggestion of Columnaris was correct, for the following reasons:
-- Light gray blotches were concentrated on the head and dorsal region rather than all over the body. Although I didn't see a well-defined "saddleback," the largest/strongest light spot was just ahead of the dorsal fin.
-- Raising the temperature to 86 F/30 C (on the belief it was Costia) seemed to accelerate disease progression rather than slow it down. My understanding is that Columnaris progresses more quickly at high temperature.
<Indeed; Columnaris is notoriously rapid, and can go from zero symptoms to a dead fish in days.>
To answer your question from before, I saw no red spots, on the belly or elsewhere.
<Odd.>
From my reading, I understand that Flavobacterium columnare is a gram-negative, aerobic bacterium. My inclination is to move the fish to a hospital tank, reduce the temperature to 75 F/24 C, and treat with KanaPlex and perhaps nitrofurazone or Triple Sulfa. Does this make sense?
<Yes. I would treat all Corydoras together, to reduce the stress of isolation. Do bear in mind that with small fish treatment doesn't always help, and sometimes you end up with a batch of fish that 'fail to thrive' and have to wait a while, then buy a new, healthier batch.>
Also, would adding aquarium salt (purely as an adjunct, not as the main treatment) be beneficial?
<Unlikely, unless your water was abnormally soft. The idea of adding salt is to tone down the need for osmoregulation a bit, and reduce fluid loss, or something along those lines. In medium hardness water (or harder) the addition of salt doesn't really do anything useful, given Corydoras actually prefer soft water, and adapt (albeit successfully) to harder water conditions.>
Again, I greatly appreciate the help.
Matt
<Good luck, Neale.>

Re: I can't figure out what's wrong!       1/23/19
Thank you Bob for you fast reply! You always amaze me.
<Welcome Mandy>
About the calcium and hardness, I don't ad any calcium to my water,...I'm not sure why it's so high, maybe it's just my well water. I guess I should test it.
<Please do... the SeaChem product likely adds... Do you have, make reverse osmosis for your drinking, cooking? I'd cut the well water with this if so>
And since it doesn't seem to be a problem in the 13 gallon tank I hate to start to do serial dilution of anything. I will only upset the whole thing!
The corals seem quite happy there and so do the fish and other creatures.
<Real good; I do agree>
About taking half the substrate from the 13 gallon tank and seeding it into the 25 gallon, I can do that....I have new sand coming and it can replace
what I will remove,....but it will stir up what Sally Jo calls a "Sewer" in my 13 gallon tank!
<Ahh, good>
All the stuff suspended in the substrate will be in the water after I do that. Won't that cause the 13 gallon to have a huge nitrate spike and kill all my creatures? Perhaps I don't understand this well, please elaborate?
<Use a siphon hose, and pour off the supernatant... the floating water and debris>
I have considered taking half of the live rock in that tank, (chisel it into two pieces) and move one side to the new tank, but at this point the Xenias on that live rock will all die in the new tank, the last little group
I put in scrunched down and just disappeared! It was so sad. I don't feel I can do that to them even though I have lots of extras. They are my favorite coral of all. Sorry. I know many people don't like them, people consider them to be weeds, but I love Dandelions best too. I'm a nut.
<Then we are nuts>
So, about the Iodide, I have the Seachem Iodide already, I lost my one and only cleaner shrimp when he was molting a few months ago, so I thought I might need more Iodide. I only used it once though, because then on your site it said do not add things you don't test for, and I don't have an iodide test kit. (I will get one though.)
<Do use this>
Why would I add Iodide to a new tank with new saltwater mixed up,....I use Instant Ocean Reef Crystals I assumed that the salt has the correct amount of Iodide in the mix?
<It "drops out of solution" very easily>
But if you think that might be what's missing, I can add it. I'm not sure about Iron,...it's in the Reef Plus I believe. So is iodine....but it's very small amounts. Maybe I need more? Once again, I though that salt mix would have all these things in the proper amounts,... and I've been doing water changes too,....lot's of fresh saltwater.
<Try just one change at a time... Good science!>
You know, there is one thing that was different in the new tank than the older one,.....I started it with a different salt mix. Red Sea Coral Pro Salt. It had great reviews and I thought it might be a step up from the Reef Crystals, I wanted to try a SPS coral,....but when I told Sally Jo she said NO. Go back to the Reef Crystals, and I have for the last few water changes.
I don't know if that might be part of the problem. The RED SEA Coral Pro salt is much heavier they say in Magnesium, Calcium and Carbonates and some other coral building stuff than regular salt mixes.
From their label on the can of salt:
"Coral Pro Salt Mix provides the biologically balanced, elevated levels of the foundation elements (Calcium, Magnesium & Carbonates) necessary for sustainable, accelerated growth and enhanced vitality of all corals."
Maybe this Red Sea Salt mix is why my calcium and my hardness are so high?
<Could well be a contributor>
I didn't really use test kits when I started the first tank,....so I didn't test it until after I used the Red Sea salt,....and both tanks are the same.
Even the old tank got some new water made with the Red Sea Coral Pro salt.
Maybe thing just aren't balanced because of it?
<Again; a possibility>
About adding food, I do, I feed the hermits and snails a few pellets everyday, don't want them to starve in such a naked tank. There's nothing left to eat in there since they ate all the diatoms.
<A fine small food, like Cyclops (-eeze) would be my first choice to add here>
Ok, I'm sorry I think I have too many questions!
Mandy
<No worries. BobF>
Re: I can't figure out what's wrong!       1/23/19

Ok! I didn't think about using a siphon! But when I pour off the dirty water won't I lose copepods and bacteria too?
<Not much of them, no. For bigger animals (like crustaceans), pour the water through a net>
Isn't that why you want me to move the sand to begin with? To move copepods and bacteria? I could use a fine net for the bigger creatures I guess.
<Ah yes and yes>
OK. I'll do that. It's Oolite sand, that's my favorite. Even if it does get stirred up easily. It's still the prettiest and softest sand. Then there is a little crushed coral on top.
Then after I get the sand back into the newer tank, I can add 1 dose of Iodide.
Perhaps that will help.
<Am hoping so>
One thing though that I still don't understand is why do I have such a hard time keeping the PH up.
<Mmm; it's likely a good deal due to your high Calcium level... there's a negative interaction twixt high alkaline earth (Ca, Mg...) content and pH>
It's very stable,....it's stays at 7.8 all the time on my tests.....maybe too many people breathing in the house?
<I hope not... though too-sealed homes can have such an effect>
I've read that any where from 7.6-8.4 is ok,....but only for fish. Corals and inverts need 8 and above. I've added baking soda,....several times, it never stays up.
The other tank is at Ph 8. Not high enough really either,....but again, everything is thriving. I just don't get it! I think it must be the liverock is just a much better Rock.
<Likely is the rock>
It's real ocean rock,....and millions of thing live inside it, I see them crawling around when I use my camera and get really close, there are thing in there that are just amazing! Long whiskers and funny curly bodies,... things that walk upside down and then flip over and never miss a beat!
WOW!
I love watching them. My favorites though are the ones that look like tiny shrimp and have big white eyes....they are so fast! They love the barnacles best.
Bob, there is nothing in my life more wonderful than that 13 gallon tank.
It s like looking at heaven. I really want the 25 to be just as happy.
<In time... B>
Mandy
Re: I can't figure out what's wrong!       1/23/19
Thanks so much Bob, I will give it more time and do the things you suggested
Mandy
<Thank you Mandy. B>
Re: I can't figure out what's wrong!       1/23/19

Bob,
<Mandy>
I tested my well water, straight from the tap, not through the Pure filter.
It only took 2 drops for the color to change on the Calcium. Very low.
<Ahh>
And it only took 3 drops for the KH to change! So, we don't even have a lot of minerals in our well water.
<Not ones involved in hardness at least>
We do live in the Pine Barrens in NJ. The soil is very sandy and acidic I believe. Lot's of mountain laurels and pines.
<Have been to a few places in New Jersey; many small water districts in the Garden State, and the ones I'm familiar with do have good/great water for human use... not much dissolved solids>
There is a little Phosphate,....it showed .5 ppm's.
<Likely fine for your set-up/s>
The PH of the tap water was the lightest yellow (lowest reading),...7.4. Of course, it doesn't measure lower than that on the test, so who knows it might be even lower.
<Mmm; yes...>
I have drinking water test strips, I will check it with them too,....can always use a second data point.
<Good>
Ok, on the drinking water test strip it was again at the lowest color, which says reads ph 6. So, I guess our water is somewhat acidic. I wonder why the test strip doesn't go lower than ph of 6?
<Just what the kit is made for. There are lower colorimetric assays for pH et al. I taught H.S. chemistry and physics>
I wonder how that affects my water in my salt tanks?
<Yes; this water's "hydrogen ion content" will eat away at the alkalinity, reserve in your mix, and that of the substrates (rock, gravel/sand) in the tank itself. You might... should look into increasing the amount of baking soda, or using (better) a pH bolstering product. Again, another SeaChem product is my choice... This should be mixed into the change out water ahead of use, all allowed to sit a few days... if you can, a week ahead of its use next maintenance interval>
So, it must not be my water that is sending the Calcium and hardness up so high. I must have been the Red Sea Coral Pro salt mix.
<Possibly>
Or maybe the Walt Smith rock gives off a lot of minerals in the beginning?
<Indeed it can. It is touted as being "ocean cured" after being made (on shore)... but the cement part is quite alkaline for a while>
They do say to let it cure until the PH gets up to 8 or higher in the fine print online.
Is that what's happening? I thought because there is no ammonia or nitrite it was all cured?
<Could be>
Do you even have to cure dry rock?
<Not for the same reasons as live, but yes; it does need to soak... to remove excess materials that are easily soluble>
It's never even been in the ocean,...why would you have to cure it at all?
<If it's the product I've met with... made in Fiji; then it has been cured... again, by being placed underwater on the shallow reefs for months>
The sand is just regular Caribsea brand. I don't think it's the sand releasing the calcium,....or minerals,.....or is it?
<Also a potential factor>
I just had a light bulb come on in my head! IF the water comes in slightly acidic....does that do what vinegar would do if you dosed the tank with vinegar?
<Indeed; yes. All acids are proton donors, electron acceptors>
I've read that people do that to release more calcium and minerals from their rock and substrate. Maybe it's just happening naturally in my tanks because of the water being at PH of 6.
<Well; actually all this is a mix... IF you add equal numbers of Hydrogen ions (acid) and Hydroxyl ions (base), you end up with a neutral pH solution: 7.0... >
When I had large reef tanks, 150 gallon and 50 gallon, they were all fine too with this local well water....something's different in this new tank.
And the only think that's different is the Walt Smith Rock.
<You could soak or to save time, boil a piece in tapwater, measure the water pH after....>
This is weird.
Mandy
<Mmm, just unknown for now. BobF>
Re: I can't figure out what's wrong!       1/23/19

So, I guess that reading isn't too weird,...for the pH in the tap water.
<Nope>
I read this that says that a pH of 6-8.5 is normal in underground water.
Like well water.
https://www.water-research.net/indexphp/water-treatment/tools/the-ph-of-water  In general, a water with a pH < 7 is considered acidic and with a pH > 7 is considered basic. The normal range for pH in surface water systems is 6.5 to 8.5 and for groundwater systems 6 to 8.5. Alkalinity is a measure of the capacity of the water to resists a change in pH that would tend to make the water more acidic.
Mandy
<Ah yes. B>

Re: Sick Corydoras sterbai; Costia treatment      1/22/19
Dear WWM,
<Matt,>
I have a further question on my sick Corydoras sterbai with a suspected case of Costia. The fish has developed Popeye in both eyes. As suggested in Neale's article on salt and Epsom salt, I've added 4 teaspoons of Epsom salt to the 10 gallon hospital tank, which is now at 86 F/30 C.
<Should help. A rule of thumb is this: if one eye swollen, likely physical trauma, such as fighting or bumping into something; if both eyes, then more likely environmental and/or bacterial. Choose medication as indicated, though antibiotics, if used carefully, should cover both possibilities without causing harm.>
My further question (in addition to how to deal with the Costia) is whether to treat the Popeye with antibiotics, and if so with what.
<See above; almost impossible to say for sure the optimal antibiotic without identifying the bacteria (and/or having a biomedical degree) but the old Maracyn 1 and Maracyn 2 combo is widely used.>
The catch is that the fish is not eating. Nitrofurazone is often recommended for Popeye, and I have Hikari BiFuran. However, my impression is that nitrofurazone is not well absorbed through the skin, so for internal complaints, the only effective means of administration is via medicated food. Is this correct?
<Does tend to be true, yes.>
I also have Seachem KanaPlex (kanamycin), which is absorbed through the skin relatively well and which the manufacturer suggests for Popeye.
<Kanamycin is a good choice in such situations, yes.>
I haven't seen it recommended much for Popeye on WWM, and I'm wondering whether it's the best treatment under these circumstances (fish not eating) or whether another treatment/approach would be better.
<Kanamycin has a more limited range of applications than some of the other antibiotics, but it is well absorbed through the skin, so worth a shot.
Popeye often fixes itself under optimal conditions, so it may well be that just helping the fish's own immune system is all that's needed, rather than a complete cure.>
Again, thanks for everything you do for the hobby, and any suggestions would be much appreciated.
Matt
<Good luck, Neale.>
Re: Sick Corydoras sterbai; Costia treatment      1/22/19

Neale:
Thank you for your helpful response.
<Most welcome.>
Sadly, the little fellow had given up the ghost by the time I got back from the aquarium store with the Maracyn One and Two. If nothing else, I'm better prepared for the next time.
<Sad outcome, but as you say, it's a learning experience you may be better prepared for in the future.>
Your comment about Corydoras doing better in shorter tanks is consistent with my experience.
<Ah, yes. In the wild they're among those fish found in streams where the water may be just a couple inches deep. Whether or not Corydoras need to gulp air is unclear to me, but in relatively warm home aquaria, it seems likely.>
Mine had far fewer problems when I had them in a 33 gallon "long." (That aquarium sprang a leak, and the 20 gallon "tall" was gathering dust in the garage, so I pressed it into service.)
<Understood.>
I appreciate all the sound information and advice and have made a contribution to WWM via PayPal for beer, bandwidth or some combination of the two.
<Thank you for this.>
Matt
<Cheers, Neale.>

Kenya tree pest      1/22/19
All week I have been removing stringy, worm like things which were wrapped around the branches of my Kenya tree they wrap around and tighten so that the affected branch falls off, I removed about 10 yesterday as it was looking a bit weaker than normal and it has really perked up today then I have just found a new one tonight. It does not seem to be anything randomly catching in the branches (there is nothing so stringy in the tank) but more of a pest of some kind which is forming a perfect circle around the branch and restricting it, I have searched the pages but can not find anything else like it. What do you think? Have you seen this before?
<The image is very small, could you adjust the size to a few hundred KB´s and send it back please? Wil.>
Re: Kenya tree pest      1/22/19

Sorry I did not want to send too big a photo
<Ok, It looks like a worm of some sort, I´d continue removing them manually and see if this suffice. Cheers. Wil.>


I can't figure out what's wrong!      1/22/19
Hello,
<Sassi>
I am writing to ask if you can think of something other than the normal tank parameters that might cause a new reef tank to not be quite right.
<Mmm; a bunch of possibilities>
I have a Fluval Peninsula AIO 13 gallon tank that is doing very very well, live sand, live rock, 2 small fish, lots of hermit crabs, snails, bristle worms and copepods. 2 peppermint shrimp and several happy corals. Pulsing Xenias, snowflake toadstool, yellow elegans toadstool, Zoas, colt coral and even a tiny frag of Montipora, and a tiny frag of Pocillopora, (both recommended beginner sps corals). All the corals are out and happy, growing and doing well. I do weekly water changes but don't add a lot of supplements
...just Seachem Plus. Per Sally Jo Headlee at GARF.
<Looks very nice indeed>
In the 13 gallon I have one Midas blenny, Lowly Worm. And 1 Firefish Incognito. You never see him except to eat. There is a crab of some sort in the live rock,....he never comes out so he must be a filter feeder or eats copepods. I don't know, but he's never hurting anything so I leave him alone He's not even eating my beautiful bristle worms! I have a wonderful group of them now. I like them a lot. Do you know they have faces with eyes!!
<Ah, yes; and facial palps!>
I got really close with my camera and actually was eye to eye with one,.... what a revelation. I thought they were like earthworms, but they are not!
Cute little faces really.
Per my API test kits,...this tank has 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 0 nitrates.
Calcium is high like 800 on the test, and the KH is high too. It took 16 drops to turn the test from blue to yellow.
<Do reduce these by serial dilution... and cutting back on supplementation>
Any way, this is my successful tank, and I love it. But the corals are growing and I'd like to move the
ones that will get bigger(the toadstools and the Colt coral) to my new tank
..............and herein lies the problem!
*************************************************
My new tank is a Innovative Marine 25 gallon Lagoon style tank. Short and square. I wanted more floor space and not a lot of height, I need to be able to work on my tank. Like the other tank, it's an AIO. Sump in the back, which works well for me, much easier to work on back there instead of on the floor! I used to have a big tank with a big sump. What a pain! .
In it has Live Sand, but instead of real ocean rock it has that Walt Smith brand man made rock (I was trying to do the "right" thing and save the reef!). It's done with the cycling and diatoms,....and it's nice and clear.
It's been about 2.5 months it's been running.
<Okay>
I have a little bit bigger pump than came with the Lagoon tank, because their pump was really bad and really noisy, so I put one of my backup pumps in. I have lot's of flow and my jets are aimed up to always ruffle the water we need lots of oxygen in the water after all. I do this in the little tank too. Both jets are aimed up.
<Should be fine>
So, my testing is showing the tank to be on the downward side of the Nitrate spike you get at the end of cycling,....it's between 20 and 10 ppm on the API Test Master Salt Testing kit. The Ammonia is 0, the Nitrite is 0 as would be expected. The KH is high, just like in the 13 gallon tank,....our well water is high in dissolved minerals. And although I haven't tested the Calcium I'm sure it's fine too since it's a new tank and nothing is using it up. The Walt Smith Rock is calcium carbonate.
<Yes; Walt and his wife Deb are friends, have been to their place in Fiji a few times>
It is my plan to add more live sand,....it's on it's way. I just read on your site that if you are going to have live sand, 3 inches deep is better than 1 or 2 for the nitrate bacteria.
<This is so; the deeper the better; IF not deep, then finer grade>
I have added my cleanup crew, hermit crabs (reef safe ones) and a variety of snails. I have added copepods. I have some of Sally Jo's Garf Grunge mixed into the sand bed too. I also seeded some of the 13 gallon tank's sand into the new tank. So, I do have copepods, but no where near the thriving community of them I see in the 13 gallon tank which is just crawling with creatures. This tank has a few of the larger copepods walking on the rock now and then,....a few of the little ones that look like shrimpies with big white eyes. Mostly though I see things zooming around in the water, against the black back of the tank,....millions of them. They aren't floating, they all have different trajectories, so I know they are alive. But there is almost nothing inhabiting the rock,...I don't think they like that Walt Smith rock,....but it's too late now to take it out. I don't want to kill the ones that are living in it.
<This takes time. I would move a good deal of the substrate from the 13 to the 25>
The one thing that both tanks have in common is the PH. It is always between 7.8 and 8. It doesn't go up to 8.2 or 8.4. The only supplement I use is Seachem Reef Plus,....Sally Jo said I need to use that 2 times a week.
Otherwise, I only feed New Life Spectrum Thera A pellets, no frozen thawed food at this time. Lowly Worm and the Firefish are happy with the pellets and so are the other creatures.
Ok, so the problem is this,.....Despite the water parameters being ok,...not perfect,....but getting there.....why won't my little pieces of corals open up?
<Mmm; could be a few things... from the too-low pH, a lack of useful food/s, to a deficiency in "something"... like iodide/ate, iron....>
I have a tiny piece of colt coral, a small cutting of my big gorgonian coral,...and some button polyps from Sally Jo. Only the Button's are open all the way, the colt coral is all scrunched down in his barnacle, and the Gorgonian won't open his polyps. He's just laying there with them poking out but not open. All three of these are fully open and growing like weeds in the 13 gallon tank. I'm so frustrated. I thought that softies like some nitrate in their water for food? Am I wrong?
<All in balance; but yes, some NO3, HPO4....>
I can't buy any fish for this tank until I know that things are balanced and thriving! I don't want them to suffer and die. Can you help me figure out what I still need to correct?
<For now I'd experiment with adding just one thing at a time... DO try some fine frozen food/s (or a blended product), OR iodide-ate (SeaChem's line is a fave), OR Fe...>
I've done many small and 1 large water change, to bring the nitrates down,..
..I will of course continue doing so. But I can't figure out what I've done wrong in this new tank. I will take a couple pictures for you,....maybe you can think of something I haven't. Thank you. Pictures below.
First the 13 gallon tank that's doing well. It is right next to a window, has plants behind it, but still get tons of real sunlight. I think that's partly why it does so well. And I don't scrape the back wall, the snails need something green to eat, there's no algae in the tank any where. Plus the algae filters the light coming in a little.
<Yes; I'd leave this be>
The 3 month old Lagoon tank...looks like mars or some place uninhabited! I hate that look. I hate that Walt Smith rock too. It's ugly. But it's better for the environment I hope. The new tank has a fancier light,....better for corals it said. It's a Current light. With the fancy interface, but I don't use that part really. The one thing I don't have in this tank is pumps,.. there is so much flow I didn't think I needed more. I have them if I need them though. .
Thank you for taking the time to even read this massive post,....I hope the pictures aren't too huge.
<They're fine; thank you>
Amanda Wilson in Jackson, NJ, USA
<Do please keep me/us informed as time goes by with what you're trying, the apparent results.
Bob Fenner, San Diego, CA, USA>

13 gal.

25 gal.

Pyramidellid snails      1/22/19
Hello Crew! Thanks in advance for your help with my question!
<Sure>
I recently got a new Astraea snail. It had been in the tank about 24 hours or somewhat less when I watched it cleaning the front glass and noticed that it had some Pyramidellid hitchhikers on it.
<Mmmm>
I promptly removed the snail and cleaned off the Pyramidellids before replacing it into the tank. Now this is a fairly small tank (20 gallons) with the only inhabitants being a Fiji blue devil, 1 Lysmata amboinensis,
2 Astrea snails, several Nassarius snails, 1 small rock flower anemone (E. crucifer, a small colony of zoanthids, 1 pom pom xenia, and 1 small green tree Nephthea, and several small blue leg hermit crabs. No Tridacnids, and I'm not likely to add any additional critters to this small tank.
<Ah, good>
How likely am I to have trouble from these pest snails?
<Maybe not. Could be that these are not Pyramidellids that feed on snails... Can you take well-resolved pix of them and send along?>
Are any of the current inhabitants likely to prove delicious to them?
<Possibly the other snail species>
My current limited understanding of this species is that they are primarily predators of other mollusks, not soft corals, but I am far from certain of this. If they are gastropod predators, can I remove my snails to a "safe space" for inspection and decontamination, and hold them in quarantine until the Pyrams are starved out?
<Mmm; yes; though this may take a very long time. Better to occasionally remove the other snails and inspect, brush the hitchhikers off, dispose>
And how long would it take to eliminate the pests?
<Perhaps months to... forever>
Thanks for your help with this! Until recently I was under the impression that Pyramidellids were only an issue for Tridacnids so I was not as careful as I should have been when introducing the new snail. Now
I know better but want to make sure I deal with this situation before it gets out of hand.
<Ah yes; better to isolate, quarantine all... to avoid unwanted HHs as well as other benefits>
*Joanne WhiteI*
<Bob Fenner>

Hoplarchus psittacus not feeding      1/22/19
Greetings crew. I hope you are doing well.
<And you Robert>
Im happy to say I've kept my aquariums in check for some time now. Im writing to you today due to a rehome i accepted.
<Okay>
An adult Hoplarchus psittacus. Owner didn't say much why he was getting rid of many of his fish. When it got home i noticed maybe why:
<... an unusual cichlid; mostly out of the Rio Negro>
Cloudy eyes and bloody dorsal fin, hole in the head ( mildly) and severe stress, although, i guess any fish as big would also be very stressed. A week in observation in a 60 gal just for him, everything cleared. Good color, no blood, nothing. I received him well fed though, he's around 24 cm, maybe more. After 4 weeks i moved him to the 150 gal south American planted tank: Festivums, yellow acara, fancy Plecs, some unidentified species of big Pencilfish ( 9 cm each).
<These last can be troublesome... mean toward other fishes>
Problem is, while i saw him take bites out of food in the 60 gal, he never showed much enthusiasm for food, but was very active and colorful. He devoured plants massively though.
Now, in the 150, he's become skittish, duller colored, and is not eating, clearly he's beginning to become skinny, you can see a sunken stomach and skinny areas around the dorsal/anal fins.
<I'd move this fish back to the sixty>
Its been 2 weeks in the 150 and still nothing. Tank parameters are ph 7.8,
<This is way too high... this fish needs soft, acidic water conditions>

gh 10 , kh 14, temp is 25 c. These psittacus were brought a year ago by a store and were considerably smaller, so these have grown here. Water is changed weekly ( 75%) properly treated. Water service has been cut for quite a while, so im due 1 week of maintenance ( never been a problem, have gone even 3 weeks, since its not overly stocked and there it is full of plants). I tried soaking the food in garlic but nothing works, he does show interest and sometimes takes bites but spits it out.
<I'd try a good pelleted food (Hikari, Spectrum), and live insect larvae if you can get them>
A lot of the time is scared by other fish splashing water while feeding furiously. He's at least 2.5 times bigger than the biggest fish, how is he scared?
<Strange setting, being moved....>
I have medicine for internal parasites ( Levamisole) and can quarantine again if need be, but i would really like to know if i can try anything else beforehand ( moving a 24 cm fish is stressful for both him and me).
<I would treat this fish with both Levamisole and Metronidazole for possible lumenal issues. IN the sixty>
Food used so far is flake, granules, pellets ( 5 mm size) crumbles. Maybe try a bigger food? I breed roaches for my frogs, but he isnt interested in that either. Problem is he shows interest but most of the time he gets scared, or just spits the food.
The other day i saw him poop and it was a normal, thick poop. Nothing unusual. But, lately ( 4 days ago) he's started twitching his fins, caudal and dorsal, in a way which made me reminisce of mix of shimmies with flaring. He's also started darting, although pretty unusual. Fins are normally extended and he moves around the whole tank, but is skittish to me and active fish.
I link a photo of him currently, i hope you can see it.
https://scontent.fsal1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/fr/cp0/e15/q65/50927156_10217745459924010_4535587938200715264_o.jpg?_nc_cat=111&efg=eyJpIjoidCJ9&_nc_ht=scontent.fsal1-1.fna&oh=5f55ffb1488e99f27eb520fe3e77fd10&oe=5CFF0E2A
Thanks, again.
<Thank you for sharing. Bob Fenner>

Febrewery Calendar     1/21/19
Hi Bob. Couldn't resist using your latest squid pic for the WWM calendar. Nice shot!
Cheers,
Mike
<Thanks Mike. Will post/share. B>

Re: Acrylic Aquarium build.     1/21/19
Hi Bob,
<Mike>
The tank isn’t perfectly level but I did make sure there was no twist in the stand before adding water to the tank. I used a high quality level. Accurate to .0005”!
<Wow>
I can certainly use a longer level or straight edge for the 60” but I was using it as a brief reference. I would imagine 18” past my 2ft level at centre would be 1/8-3/16” gap at either end. I can confirm this when I do another water test.
<Yes I would>
I have to ask you again. How comfortable are you with the thickness of acrylic I used, high quality glue, my application method and amount of bowing?
<Am very fine w/ all>
Best regards Bob!
Mike
<Cheers, BobF>

Sick Corydoras sterbai; Costia treatment     1/21/19
Dear Crew,
<Hello Matt.>
Thank you for everything you do for the hobby!
<Kind words, indeed.>
I'm writing today about a sick Corydoras sterbai. Disease progression has been as follows:
(1) Some light gray spots visible against the brown coloration on the head, while that brown color became more of a muddy gray and the light spots/reticulations became indistinguishable from the background.
(2) Overall fish color gradually became lighter, with white along the flanks becoming more prominent than brown. This may be an extension of (1) but is also consistent with what seems to be stress coloration for the species.
(3) Although initially there was no apparent reduction in activity, the fish gradually became more lethargic. When my bossy Bristlenose Pleco nudged the sick Cory today, the Cory's usual swim-away response was considerably delayed, and it took more than one nudge. The Cory is not competing effectively for food with the Bristlenose or the other two Corydoras sterbai.
<Understood. Any evidence of Red Blotch Disease, such as the diagnostic red sores on the belly? This is quite common in catfish, especially if the bottom current along the floor of the tank isn't particularly strong and/or the substrate isn't too clean.>
I've seen the same progression with two other Corydoras sterbai in the same tank over the last year; neither survived. I've also lost two others to unknown causes during vacations. After reading about Costia on WWM, that's my best guess as to what's happening.
<Or Columnaris, which is another of these diseases that creates off-white or grey slime patches on the flanks. Columnaris is sometimes called Mouth Fungus but is by no means restricted to the mouth.>
This is a 20 gallon "tall" tank, with two hang-on-back filters (240 gph and 100 gph) and two air-driven sponge filters. Tank inhabitants are one common Bristlenose, three Corydoras sterbai, and 8-10 assassin snails, with one piece of Mopani wood, a couple of Anubias, and a large mass of Java moss.
Water is neutral, moderately soft, with one-eighth to one-quarter teaspoon baking soda added per 5 gallons. Temperature is 79 F/26 C. NH4 and NO2 test at 0, NO3 at 5 ppm (all per API liquid tests).
<All sounds fine, though Corydoras don't appreciate having to swim upwards 30 cm/12 inches, so a "tall" tank isn't usually optimal.>
I've moved the sick Cory to a 10 gallon hospital tank, with the 100 gph filter, one sponge filter, and a supplemental airstone. It's at 79 F/26 C now. Neale has mentioned that Costia has trouble surviving above 86 F/30 C, so I'm slowly raising it to that temperature, which C. sterbai can handle.
<Corydoras sterbai will be fine at this high temperature, but will gulp air more often.>
My question is: is there anything else I can do or should be doing?
<Do review the symptoms of Columnaris as well as Costia. Hard to tell them apart without a microscope. Costia is usually treated as per Whitespot, though it is more stubborn. Columnaris is treated as per Finrot, though again, can be stubborn.>
Of the other things I've seen suggested for Costia on WWM (saltwater dips, formalin, copper), none seems particularly "safe" for a Corydoras, but is one safer than the others? I'm in the U.S., so eSHa 2000 is not an option. I have Kordon Rid Ich Plus (formalin/malachite green) at hand.
<Avoid formalin and copper-based medications when treating catfish, but antibiotics should all be safe, and the usual organic dyes (such as malachite green and Methylene blue) should be okay, too.>
Again, thank you for your help.
Matt
<Good luck. Cheers, Neale.>

Here's a new one - wrasses NOT dying but everything else did     1/21/19
Hello WWM crew,
<Rob>
Great site, read it all the time, have written to you folks many times but I have an odd situation, at least for me. Bear with me. I have a 90 gallon well established reef tank. ( about 17 years in it's present state ) No real problems until about 3 months ago. I added a quarantined fish to the mix, no signs of disease at all. Within 2 weeks some of my larger fish started showing signs of velvet ( gray slime, tiny specks, rapid breathing, no appetite ) and some showed signs of ich. ( larger white specks, scratching and flashing, rapid breathing, lethargy ) Or a virulent bacterial infection???
<Mmm; would need at least to sample, look under a 'scope>
Not good, before I could do anything, I lost 6 fish to, what looked like, 2 different diseases. Less than 48 hours, all affected fish, dead . I have treated for ich, velvet, brook etc... over the years but this... I said it
was odd. But the oddest thing is that none of my wrasses died. None of them. There is a leopard wrasse, yellow wrasse, pink streaked and a Halichoeres zeylanica. That last fish is blind in one eye but doing well.
All of my wrasses are doing well.
<Strange>
Even my magnificent Rabbitfish didn't make it. He was in there 5 years.
The wrasses are all in the tank still, tough to catch them. But I am at a loss. Why did none of my wrasses die but all of the other fish did? And none of the wrasses showed any sign of any disease at all at any time.
Still don't. I am at a loss here.
<Me too>
Could the disease, whatever the disease was, be gone?
<Possibly; or more likely, latent... sub-clinical. I know of no condition or parasite group that would favor Labrids over other fish groups>
Unlikely but I was hoping you guys could help me out with possibilities and how to proceed.
thanks everyone,
Rob
<Proceed? Cautiously. I'd quarantine/isolate all new live purchases... add water from the main display to the quarantine in time. Bob Fenner>
Re: Here's a new one - wrasses NOT dying but everything else did     1/21/19

Thank you for getting back to me so quickly. Strange situation for sure.
Should I remove the wrasses from the DT?
<For? I myself wouldn't. Even if you/I fear they may be operating as "reservoir hosts"; the rest of the system can/does for months as well>
They are not sick but I fear whatever got my other fish may still be in there. But not affecting the wrasses???? This is so frustrating. Those 4 wrasses have been the only inhabitants for several weeks. I'm afraid to add any new fish, even after quarantine.
<See my MO: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/acclimppt1.htm>
I have spent far too long searching internet for any story similar to mine. None. After 20+ years in this hobby, I thought I'd seen it all. I guess not. I have tested my tank water often - nothing out of ordinary. Had my RO water tested at hardware store and my tap water tested as well. RO water's TDS were 0. I use Kent marine salt. Im searching for answers.
Because any toxins or metals would taken out some of the more delicate wrasses before a Foxface??
Thank you again!
Rob
<Welcome. BobF>

Re: White ring on Clown Tangs head      1/21/19
Hi Will,
<Lloyd>
My Tank is a 4’ Diameter cylinder tank with my pipe work coming from the center to allow free swimming.
<Good tank shape although over time it will be better to upgrade.>
Thanks for your observation of the photos.
You guys provide such a wealth of experience, it really is invaluable.
<We are glad to share it.>
Regards,
Lloyd
<Take care. Wil>

Goldfish gets hyper then floats like its dead   /Neale      1/20/19
<<Hello Adele. Do agree strongly with BobF's earlier reply. Goldfish appreciate hard water, if not necessarily to the same degree as Malawi Cichlids, they surely do thrive in water with, say, 10-25 degrees dH, pH 7-8. Indeed, you're more likely to find wild carp in slightly brackish water than acidic blackwater streams, which tells you something of their preferences! Of course you've done well keeping these fish for 12 years, which proves how adaptable Goldfish are, but you're evidently hitting some sort of roadblock now, so it's a good idea to sit back and reflect. Let me direct you to some reading, here:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/goldfish101art.htm
Hard water, swimming space, generous filtration, moderate water current, and a diet including some fresh greens is really all they want -- and given the right conditions 'loopy' Goldfish will often recover under their own steam without any further intervention. Cheers, Neale.>>

Acrylic Aquarium build.      1/20/19
Hi guys/Bob,
<Good morn Mike>
I’ve built a custom (cell cast) aquarium 60”X36”x 24.5” high top and are 1/2” acrylic, side panels are just shy of 3/4” acrylic. Joint gaps before glue are .02”. Glue used is Scigrip 42.(you can’t beat 4000psi) Some small bubble here and there and some crazing. Tank holds water fine. Long side panels bow measured from Center with a two foot level,
<A note here: I'd use a longer level... >
I get a 1/16” gap from left to right at either end of level. From top to bottom I get 1/8” gap at either end of my 24” level. Is this bowing ok?
<Mmm; likely so; considering the thickness of acrylic used here. Are you sure the stand itself is level?>
I get very little bow at the short ends of my tank. I drained half the water and found the bow very similar than when the tank is full.
<Ah, yes; the material is not going to bow itself>
I was planning on running an old Tunze wave box on the tank as part of a stress test to test the seams. Tank panels were laser cut and all lasered edges were shaved off till stress bowing of the panels were relieved.
<Oh! Neat! Not a worry then.>
One of the well known tank manufacturer wanted to make this tank out of 100% 1/2” acrylic. I totally didn’t want that!!!
<Agree/d>
Thanks for your help.
Mike
<Thank you for sharing. Bob Fenner>

I would like the opportunity to be allowed to sell items in the categories      1/20/19
Hello my name is Robert Massey and I just located your very cool website I found it when I Google searched websites similar to Aquabid.
<Interesting; as we don't sell, have others sell anything directly on WWM>
I have been a seller of aquatic invertebrates on Aquabid for over 15 years and I have like over 400 positive feedbacks and I’m currently selling on the Aquabid website now but I need more business and I’m looking for something similar to Aquabid to list invertebrates and possibly a few lesser sirens maybe a few tadpoles three toed amphiuma central newts which all of the amphibians are raised on my friends property inside his ponds.
What do y’all charge and can I pay after the customer pays me?
<Mmm; we have sponsors; the particulars here: http://wetwebmedia.com/WWMAdminSubWebIndex/wwmsponsors.htm>
And I would appreciate if y’all need more sellers any and all the rules so I can not offend anybody, I’m optimistic about this opportunity and I look forward to your reply have a wonderful day .
Robert
Pioneer
<Do you have a website already? I'd be promoting your business this way for sure; adding content... e.g. on practical husbandry, your travels in the interest... And listing livestock, drygoods there. Bob Fenner>

White ring on Clown Tangs head      1/20/19
Hi Crew,
<Hey Lloyd!>
I was admiring my fish and noticed this ring on my clown tang that is on his head near his left eye. I would like to know what this is. And if it is a minor or serious condition? He is still aggressive with the other fish, eating and swimming, no visible signs of stress. But I worry that it could get out of control quickly. To me it looks like he may have rubbed a rock or gotten into a small fight that has caused this.
<You´re right, it is a physical trauma, I wouldn't worry as it will heal in a few days/weeks, just pay attention to its behaviour to see if it is scratching against the rocks; I hope your tank is big enough (150+g).Surgeonfishes need plenty of space to swim freely.>
Regards,
Lloyd
<Cheers. Wil>

Otocinclus anatomy or parasite? /RMF      1/19/19
Hi Crew! All has been well in my tanks and I hope the same is true for you.
I've got a question for you about Otocinclus that I wonder if you can help me with. Despite having been previously wormed, and in my tank for over a year, I saw something suspicious protruding from the vent of one of my Otocinclus. I immediately suspected tapeworms and have searched with Google to see if I could find what that would look like. I found a couple of images (I will add the links) and a YouTube video showing Otos with a similar feature so now I'm not sure if it is actually a worm or a normal body part. I haven't been able to get a picture of my actual Otocinclus but the linked images are pretty much the same as what I saw with mine.
http://s3.amazonaws.com/shrimpspotmedia/monthly_05_2015/post-78-0-37089800-1432050785_thumb.jpg
http://s3.amazonaws.com/shrimpspotmedia/monthly_05_2015/post-78-0-81260700-1432050785.jpg
<Does look like something "worm-like" is protruding from the fish's vent>
These pictures were from a forums post wondering the same thing as me, whether it's a worm or tapeworm segment or an anatomical feature, unfortunately they never found an answer.
http://www.otocinclus.com/images/zebtall.jpg
This picture was posted without comment so the person who had this fish didn't think there was a problem.
So is this a normal thing, some kind of breeding apparatus maybe? Or is this an unwanted passenger?
<Could be... a Nematode...>
Otos are reclusive enough in my tank that I don't really know what's normal or not, 7 of them disappear in a 450lt tank. Hopefully you can point me in the right direction! I do have dewormers available (both Praziquantel and Levamisole) if necessary although I don't relish the idea of dosing a tank of that size. The tank has loaches and Corydoras in it as well so if there is tapeworm or otherwise present I would expect it would have spread to them too by now.
So far I have one rotund Oto and some of my loaches that I had thought were full of eggs too, but now I'm concerned for worms. On the other hand, I haven't seen any symptoms in any of the other fish (rainbows, gudgeons, tetras).
<I wouldn't try/treat these Otos... likely this is either not a parasite, or if so, not debilitating... enough to warrant vermicide use>
Thanks for all your help over the years, sometimes it's just not possible to Google an answer for something (not a lot of people have taken detailed pictures of their Oto's vents!).
Cheers,
Bronwen @ Australia
<And you, Bob Fenner in Calif.>
Otocinclus anatomy or parasite? /Neale      1/19/19

Hi Crew! All has been well in my tanks and I hope the same is true for you.
I've got a question for you about Otocinclus that I wonder if you can help me with. Despite having been previously wormed, and in my tank for over a year, I saw something suspicious protruding from the vent of one of my Otocinclus.
<The standard de-wormer, Praziquantel, isn't especially effective. It's worth doing several rounds. Flubendazole and Fenbendazole are generally more reliable than either Praziquantel or Levamisole.>
I immediately suspected tapeworms and have searched with Google to see if I could find what that would look like. I found a couple of images (I will add the links) and a YouTube video showing Otos with a similar feature so now I'm not sure if it is actually a worm or a normal body part. I haven't been able to get a picture of my actual Otocinclus but the linked images are pretty much the same as what I saw with mine.
http://s3.amazonaws.com/shrimpspotmedia/monthly_05_2015/post-78-0-37089800-1432050785_thumb.jpg
http://s3.amazonaws.com/shrimpspotmedia/monthly_05_2015/post-78-0-81260700-1432050785.jpg
These pictures were from a forums post wondering the same thing as me, whether it's a worm or tapeworm segment or an anatomical feature, unfortunately they never found an answer.
http://www.otocinclus.com/images/zebtall.jpg
This picture was posted without comment so the person who had this fish didn't think there was a problem.
So is this a normal thing, some kind of breeding apparatus maybe? Or is this an unwanted passenger? Otos are reclusive enough in my tank that I don't really know what's normal or not, 7 of them disappear in a 450lt tank. Hopefully you can point me in the right direction! I do have dewormers available (both Praziquantel and Levamisole) if necessary although I don't relish the idea of dosing a tank of that size. The tank has loaches and Corydoras in it as well so if there is tapeworm or otherwise present I would expect it would have spread to them too by now.
So far I have one rotund Oto and some of my loaches that I had thought were full of eggs too, but now I'm concerned for worms. On the other hand, I haven't seen any symptoms in any of the other fish (rainbows, gudgeons, tetras).
Thanks for all your help over the years, sometimes it's just not possible to Google an answer for something (not a lot of people have taken detailed pictures of their Oto's vents!).
Cheers,
Bronwen
<Agree with you that this structure seems abnormal. Might be a slightly prolapsed colon, which sometimes happens with fish, and fixes itself once the underlying problem is solved. Antibiotics are generally recommended here, but time and good water quality may do the trick, perhaps alongside
some use of Epsom Salt as per Dropsy. But I'd be veering more towards worms, given the tendency of wild-caught Loricariidae to be so infected.
Hope this helps, Neale.>

Coral cat shark; hlth....        1/18/19
We have had our aquarium set up for a year and some odd 3 - 4 months now.
We have some blue hermits, snails, batfish and our shark. We recently took a trip to the store to get more crabs and picked up the orbit batfish. They hadn't bothered each other for the past 4 days. Our shark has never had an issue health wise. We fed her regular meal about 3 days ago and she usually digests pretty fast and ready to eat in less than 48 hours. She's very well fed and maintained. After she digests she's usually back to her normal size after being plump but its 4 days later(noticed she was still
plump and hadn't went to the bathroom yet yesterday) and this morning I went to turn her lights on and she was laying on her back, struggling to get up so I helped her. I thought the light was bothering her (or she was being dramatic because she's spoiled) because it was a little bit earlier than usual so I turned them off and let her be for a few hours. Went back to check on her after a Dr. appointment and she was dead. Mouth wide open, plump. No signs of injury, we throughorly checked her. She wasn't pale or
anything. Just gone. So I just don't know what happened. No change in food, the only thing that changed is the new fish. I'm not sure if she sucked up a crab or snail because she has before but was fine after but I'm just at a loss. Like I said she has been fine for almost a year and a half. If you could please help me at least determine what could possibly have happened I would appreciate it .
<I/we need more details about your tank (size, filtration, water parameters, tankmates, maintenance chores)…could've been due to numerous factors. Please send the above information. Wil.>

Skin issue ID       1/18/19
Good morning all (here in Thailand) Our tank is a 1800 Lt L shape with currently only fish and life rock. The system is about 9 months old now and had cycled around 4 months before we added any fish (cycle only took 2 weeks as we used treated fresh ocean water and added bacteria from the start). All fish went through a 3 weeks Cupramine treatment in a QT tank before being added to the system. Since fish were added all fish eating well and seem very healthy eating both dry food regular Nori sheets added and every other day we add a freshly made frozen mix with garlic added to it.
Since a day or 2 now we have start seeing a condition on the Goldflake skin. It does not look like Ich or Velvet to me but rather a loss of slime coat and scales look burned or getting loose or something not really sure what to make of it....maybe you guys can help ID with the pictures attached (bad camera though) The fish itself is showing no effects at all still being super active not shy at all (eats out of our hand) eating well (being one of the more aggressive eaters in the tank even)
<Not protozoan, I agree...>
Water parameters look as good as possible to us with the following readings API test water shows 0 Nitrates 0
<How are NO3 rendered thus?>
Phosphates 0 Ammonia Salt levels 1.025 temp 26C Ph 8.0-8.2
So not sure what is going on with the Goldflake here hope you guys can help ID this condition.....Other fish in the tank are Black Tang, Purple Tang, Achilles Tang, 3 Yellow Tang, Powder blue tang, Blue Tang, Foxface, Flame Angel, several Blue Green Chromis, quit a large cleanup crew with a mix of
crabs, Hermits, snails and 4 cleaner shrimp.
<IF this fish was new; added a few days back, I'd say it had been dropped (on the floor) while being handled, moved. I would do nothing medicine wise; just leave the fish in place. As you state it is feeding, it will likely heal on its own. Bob Fenner>

Goldfish gets hyper then floats like its dead       1/18/19
Hi-
<Shawn>
I have a 12+ year old goldfish named Spot. She (or at least my daughter said it is a "she" when we got her from a fair so many years ago) has been the lone fish in a 20 gallon tank for the last 5 years (the other fish died after the Derecho knocked out power for a week-no aeration and water temp increased) . A couple of months ago, Spot developed dropsy, which I was able to (successfully??) treat with antibiotics, in that she is no longer swollen and is still alive. I generally do a complete water change every month or so, cleaning the pebbles and tank completely,
<Better BY FAR to just change out a quarter every week. READ on WWM RE>
using distilled water
<.... NO. Goldfish, all fish need some mineral content.>
and adding some "pH tabs" or baking soda to bring the pH to neutral.
<Oh, good>
I also add bacteria to the water to help degrade ammonia. I am now also adding aquarium salts. I know complete water changes and all the cleaning is excessive, but its worked for the last 12 years. I use distilled water as my house water is from a well.
<Aye ya; do you drink this water? Have had it analyzed?>
After recovering from dropsy, I completely cleaned her tank (gross yellow scum from antibiotics), and got a new filter. The water becomes cloudy (white) after a few days, as if something is coming out of solution. We feed her Tetra flakes twice a day.
<... do see WWM re GF nutrition... Pellets w/ some greens please>
This evening, I was changing out about 40% of the water and suctioning out debris from the pebbles on the bottom (to try to get rid of the cloudiness and get rid of feces and excess food).
<Would you like to live in such a world?>
Spot was much more active than usual as I was "vacuuming" the pebbles. After adding back fresh distilled water (kept water in same room all day so that temperature was the same), she was super active. I left the room to get something, and upon return, she was floating on her side as if she was dead. I nudged her and she woke up, and kept swimming around very fast. My husband says she does that
periodically.
<Poisoned, toxified>
(Spot is very responsive to my husband, as he is the one who feeds her-all he as to do is walk in the room and start to talk to her and she gets all excited till he feeds her).
But the hyperactive swimming tonight while changing the water was a new behavior. (the water chemistry looked fine, both before and after I changed out about 40%-- nitrates and nitrites all normal, hardness ok, pH neutral).
And I am worried about the "playing dead".
Any hints?
<Return, trend toward less pollution.>
We have only fed her Tetra flakes; should we try the peas?
<Yes... and....>
Could the strange behavior be a digestive issue? I am almost afraid to try anything new, since we have had Spot for so long and I don't want to do anything to disrupt her "norm". But I do want to be sure she stays as healthy as she can for as long as she can!
Thanks!
Adele
<Thank you for writing, reading. Bob Fenner>

Re: Hydrogen peroxide       1/18/19
Got it. Thanks Bob!
<Welcome John. B>

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