Other Specialized Daily FAQs Blogs: Freshwater,
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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,
Neale Monks, Marco Lichtenberger, Sabrina Sharp, James Gasta, Eric Russell, Chris Perivolidis,
Lynn Zurik, Chuck Rambo, Bob Fenner, are posted here. Moved
about, re-organized daily
Current Crew Bios., Not so current Crew Bios
Angelfishes for Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
New eBook on Amazon: Available
New Print Book on Create Space: Available
by Robert (Bob) Fenner
| PLEASE: Write reviews of my works on Amazon! I need your input. BobF
Re: Juvenile Blueface that looks like a Sixbar except.
These guys are clever they come to the front when I stand there as they think it
is yum yum time but as soon as I walk up with a camera they swim for cover, lol.
I will try and take a picture he looks like a classic
Sixbar, except for the Goldbar which I waited a few weeks before writing this to
confirm it was. I think there is an overlap in juveniles therefore.
Strangely in the UK we never saw Sixbars so the problem did not occur. I buy my
fish on my retailer's word as they are about 750kms away
and we are not allowed to take from the sea which is only about 1lm away
although I have never seen them here there are meant to be around. Always see
Moorish Idols which are lovely even in 1 meter of water.
<And you, BobF>
Re: Part 2 of clown fish question 10/25/14
LOL you wrote it. Here is the link
<Well; just goes to show. From the ref.s looks like it was penned in the
mid 90's. Don't know what I was thinking of re the Mardel product...
Thank you. BobF>
Eel with hands, have pics 10/25/14
I have an eel with hands and arms just behind the head area and cannot
find a reference to any such creature. It has been living in the
aquarium at the shop I work in for at least a year and was said to be
caught locally in a Texas lake. Have video that shows the hands much
better, but can't seem to load it from phone to email.
<While the photos aren't especially useful, they do at least show the
presence of pectoral fins and a dorsal fin. So my guess here would be
Anguilla rostrata, also known as the American Eel. It's widespread
Texas, though as elsewhere in the world, the construction of dams has
prevented this catadromous species completing its reproductive cycle,
causing it to be much rarer now than it once was.
Biology is essentially identical to the European eel, Anguilla anguilla,
which is hardy, long-lived in unheated tanks, predatory, and generally
easy to maintain on a carnivorous diet provided it cannot escape. Some
European Eels have been kept for decades in aquaria, though breeding is
of course impossible. All eels get pretty big given good conditions, so
do bear that in mind. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: My male angelfish (RMF, second opinion)
Aww, very cute.
<Or depraved... depending on whether you're a liberal or conservative!
Well now I will definitely separate and re-home one. Thank you again for
your expert advice!
Thank you for your donations to WWM
Stephen. Much appreciated. Bob Fenner
Re: My male angelfish (RMF, second opinion)
Thank you Neale, I agree it can be very difficult to sex Angels and
Discus as well.
My proven male/female discus pairs exhibit such similar papilla at
times, the hatching of eggs is almost the only way to be sure.
But still much appreciated:)
<If it's any consolation, Angels and Discus get it wrong too... possibly
as you experienced here. Some pairs form, spawn a few times, then
realise they're the same sex! Cheers, Neale.>
Re: what is it and how do I make it GO AWAY
Sent from my iPhone
Personally, if electrons are moving along the wires it always seemed to
me they should drip out of the socket and pool up on the floor.
Perhaps they do but then dissipate into the air?
My further WWM research will have to wait as the sun is shining and the
temp is a pleasant 51 F and I have to put some boards up on the peacock
Ya think I will need my bifocals to use a microscope these days???
<Can't tell from here. Perhaps. Cheers, BobF>
Strange white spots/cotton mouth? on my Platys and Betta; plus
> I tried looking at the article mentioned on
> 'The vast majority of times fish get sick, the disease involved is
> whitespot, velvet, finrot, fungus, or the shimmies. Use this article to
> establish which disease is causing your problems, and then select the
> appropriate treatment.'
> Unfortuantely when I click on 'this article' I get a 404, same with
> 'select' so hopefully this email wont be too out of place.
> <Thank you for this. Will take a look/see>
> A quick history, I'm new to aquarium keeping, and had thought things were
> pretty settled out when I went out and purchased some additional fish and
> plants for my 50G/200L tank. The day after putting the plants in (rinsed
> in RO water, but guess not good enough) I found all of my shrimp upside
> down on the bottom of the tank, some floundering around.
> <? What from the plants themselves would cause this?>
> I panic'd and added too much Tetra Aqua Safe (Water/metal treatment) which
> allowed a few of the shrimp to recover, but then caused havoc with the
> fish. I did man water changes over a week and also upgraded the HOB filter
> that came with the tank to an Eheim Ecco pro canister. After a week of
> trouble things appeared to be as good as ever with happy fish swimming
> around. During the challenging time I lost one of the new platys and one
> of the new guppies I had bought for the tank.
> <Mmm; how long has this tank been set up? Best to let all run a week or
> more before introducing any life... then allow the system to become
> established in terms of cycling.... before stocking more>
> A week passes and yesterday I look at my tank and find my betta with a
> funny gray/white chin/mottled blue face instead of the black it has been.
> The other new platy I bought a few weeks ago has a funny white fuzzy stuff
> on his mouth, and now I'm anxious it might be Columnaris that will wipe out
> my tank.
> <May be... but...>
> I've isolated the platy and betta to another smaller tank but now in
> looking closer at my other fish I am seeing little white spots that almost
> look like paint on some, and I *think* maybe holes or skin damage on the
> other platys. Unfortunately Im too new to this to really know if what Im
> looking is normal fish anatomy or something going horribly awry.
> <Just stress... from the system being new, water quality issues>
> Here's a 2 second video of the platy with the funny mouth
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pfQ56mRgdzY (I couldnt get a photo
> Here's a few photos of the platy, betta and guppies. Would love if you
> could tell me if I'm hallucinating or if everything is ok? I keep reading
> about a specific antibiotic Kanamycin but have no idea how I can get it
> here in the UK ?
> <Am going to ask Neale; who lives in Britain... for better input here>
> Anyway, thank you very much for any insight you can provide!
> <I encourage patience, and no medicine introduction at this juncture. Your
> fish's troubles are not likely pathogenic, but environmental. Treating may
> well make matters worse. Perhaps a good general freshwater book to read for
> Bob Fenner>
Re: Strange white spots/cotton mouth? on my Platys and Betta
<<Bob’s covered the basics, but some thoughts. Excess mucous production and/or
poor mechanical filtration (i.e., removal of silt rather than ammonia) can cause
fish to appear speckled out cloudy even though they’re not sick. Replacing the
mechanical filter media, checking for an irritant (such as copper or
incorrect/sudden changes in pH), and the use of flocculants (sometimes called
filter aids) can help. A series of large water changes is usually helpful where
there are large quantities of silt, together with stirring/cleaning the
substrate. Second though is the use of salt to stress freshwater parasites.
While not an option for the Betta, you can easily up the salinity to one-quarter
seawater and cause livebearers such as Platies and Guppies no harm at all. This
will severely stress most ectoparasites (velvet, ick, even Costia) and to some
degree can even help with bacterial infections (particularly where these are
opportunistic). Mouth Fungus (the bacterial infection Columnaris) is always a
possibility, though it is relatively easy to treat as per Finrot if caught
early. Antibiotics such as Kanamycin cannot be legally obtained in the UK (or
indeed most Western countries outside the US, and even in the US the
free-for-all on antibiotics isn’t likely to persist for much longer; do see the
issues with antibiotic resistance). However, you can obtain them from vets,
typically for around £10-15, which is about 2-3 times the cost of generic
aquarium treatments here. With that said, a product called eSHa 2000 is
generally excellent against bacterial infections, much better than the other
antibacterials I’ve used here (the Interpet one for example I’ve never had any
success with). eSHa 2000 costs about £4-5 a pot and is very economical to use.
It, and eSHa EXIT for external parasites, are the only two medications on sale
in the UK that I use or recommend. Cheers, Neale.>>
Re: Strange white spots/cotton mouth? on my Platys and Betta
<<The Platy in the video looks like he’s damaged his mouth, got some dead skin
there, but isn’t otherwise in trouble. If he can feed okay and is swimming
about, I’d not worry overmuch. I’d look out for opportunistic infections, such
as fungal infections, but good water quality (hard, alkaline chemistry too)
should be all he needs. Low-end brackish conditions tend to minimise fungal
infections, so if he’s in an all-livebearer tank, 3-6 gram/litre salinity could
help. eSHa products widely sold; your local Maidenhead Aquatics for example
should stock and be open Sunday. Cheers, Neale>>
Re: Strange white spots/cotton mouth? on my Platys and Betta
From the plants I believe it was pesticides used to keep snails/etc.. off them.
The tank has been setup for 6 weeks ish, ammonia is 0, nitrite is 0, nitrate is
Changing roughly 25% water once or twice a week and using (now) seachem prime to
Could you see anything from the photo's or video that looked odd? Thanks!
<Not really; no. BobF>
More than full size
Re: My male angelfish 10/23/14
Thank you very much for the advice. My LFS suggested separating them also, and
wondered if the "female" is possibly a male?
<Angels are difficult to sex *except* during spawning. Males have the obvious
spawning tube, long and pointed, and at a slight angle. It's visible for a day
or two before spawning, and in some cases partially
visible all the time. The females have a thick, short spawning tube with a
rounded tip, and rarely visible except a few hours before spawning.>
I suppose it's possible since I've never witnessed her lay eggs.
<Same-sex pairs do happen with Angels, so always a possibility.>
I've added Melafix to the 40g now and will keep close watch, since they're
<I'm not a fan of Melafix. It rarely helps and sometimes makes things worse.
Good clean water will often prompt a healthy recovery from moderate fin damage.
Serious damage best treated with antibiotics or
Any more aggression by the female and I will scoop her up and put her back with
my discus since she always got along well with them (I know it's not a good mix
but I've had her the longest and I guess my discus respect her as their gentle
<Fair enough. To be fair the big risk is Angels introducing diseases Discus
can't handle, but if you've had them together for years, that risk has probably
Egg crate is another excellent option I will consider.
Thank you again for your quick, and always reliable advice,
<Glad to help. Good luck. Neale.>
Re: My male angelfish (RMF, second opinion) 10/24/14
Hi again, I managed to get some pics of the presumed females papilla today,
maybe you will be able to confirm the sex of this fish? It would help me decide
better in their living quarters especially if your thoughts are that it is a
Again, thank you! :)
These are all of the same fish:
<Looks like a male to me, but will ask Bob to chime in here. Cheers, Neale.>
<<I concur. RMF>>
what is it and how do I make it GO AWAY
<Nan; eight megs of pix? Why?>
It has been awhile since I contacted you, which is a good thing:) I have
downsized from the 180gal to a 75 gal and I can now reach the
bottom without swimming. I have the large
sized ECO filter, a small protein
skimmer, deionized make up water. Livestock is mostly soft corals and a
few fish, a large tang, large engineer goby
and perhaps 10 small 1.5 - 2' other fish. Oh ,
and the big Ritteri anemone :).
The red slime algae comes and goes with the season but is never a major
issue. I have developed this green stuff on my stony coral
<Mmm; looks like Cyanobacteria as well... the color is not indicative...
Need to look at a bit under a low power microscope>
There has been a small patch of what I would
call fuzzy green algae on one rock for years.
It stayed there and I ignored it. Awhile back I noticed a
small patch on the coral so I put some 'Aiptasia out' on it.
Needless to say it did nothing. So I had a bit
of Super Glue left from a job and covered the
whole spot over with it. It came back with a vendetta and as
you can see, is taking over my coral who will not even spread
I did not see anything on your site that covered algae annihilation.
Have you any suggestions?
<The usual reading on WWM. There's a few approaches... that work, and
some that should be avoided (use of antibiotics)>
thanks, Nancy D
yes, those 2 pictures are the same but I can't seem to get rid on one:)
I didn't see anything on your site that covered algae annihilation. Have
you any suggestions [image: Inline image 2][image: Inline image
<The reading. Bob Fenner>
Re: what is it and how do I make it GO AWAY
Under magnification will the Cyanobacteria look like a bunch of vibrating
<Vibrating? As in moving? This is artifactual... Cyanobacteria are
photosynthetic Monerans... look like bacteria... no nucleus, a single strand
or twisted DNA; peculiar single-walled plasma membrane. See WWM re>
I did see some of that many years ago but tend forget to use the microscope.
I will check out that topic and see what pops up.
I have to laugh at me--- I can save a life but I am technologically
<Want to start a club?>
I seldom watch TV cause there are too many remotes to deal with.
<I can barely use my cell phone... even just the phone functions... I taught
H.S. physics (and chem. bio. courses); can't wire a circuit. Your turn. Bob
Juvenile Blueface that looks like a Sixbar except.
Euxiphipops ID 10/24/14
I have a Juvenile Angel which was about 1 inch, he was sold as a
Blueface but at that size I think it is anyone's guess between a
Blueface and a Sixbar. He has doubled in size and looks exactly like a
Sixbar, wide white lines, no light blue lines between them, only two
bars on the tail fin but he is getting the gold bar between the eyes. So
I guess a lucky surprise!
<Happens at times. Send along a good pic when you can>
SPS Corals Fading 10/24/14
Dear Bob & Crew,
Thanks so much for your years of dedication! Your advice as been a
integral part every tank that I've set up. Sorry about the email length!
<Welcome and no worries>
I've been having issues with my SPS corals in my 155 in-wall reef. The
set-up is designed for their particular needs and its ironic that they
are not flourishing. The main problem is the gradual fading of color,
especially in the red corals.
<Perhaps a good clue>
I have listed all relevant data below:
155 Gallon tank- 72"L x 21"H x 24"W, established since August 2013
55 Gallon Sump with 2 fuges, one mud, one DSB (about 6 gallons each)
Large Reef Octopus Skimmer
Purigen Chemical Media
3 Kessil 350W LED's at 90W each- running at 3/4 power, 75% blue
4 ATI 80W, 60" T-5's, 2 Blue, 2 White
1 19W Rapid LED actinic (for moonlight)
11am-12:30pm Moonlight on
12:30pm-6:30pm 2 Actinic T-5's On
1:30pm-7:30pm 3 Kessil's on
<I'd extend these for another two hours>
2:30pm-5:30pm 2 10K T-5's On
7:00pm-9:00pm Moonlight on
Eheim 1290 gph return
2 EcoTech Mp-10's at about 2000gph (set on reef crest)
2 Hydor Evolutions at 1500gph each, (running constantly)
SG 1.024 (need to raise)
Temp 77.1-77.4 F (controlled by Reefkeeper)
pH 7.9-8.1 (New probe, just calibrated)
Alk- 9.2 (Salifert) (Dosing B-ionic part 2)
Cal.- 400 (Salifert, dosing Kalk every hour, without vinegar)
Mag.- 1290 (Salifert)
Nitrate- 0 (API, need a low reading kit)
<... trouble. All chemo-autotrophs need appreciable NO3, and...>
Phosphate- 0 (API, again, need a better kit)
I have been dosing the Red Sea Product NoPoX,
<... this is at least one other, related source of your trouble here>
to aid in algae control, Have a pistol shrimp that has been
killing all snails and have not been successful at removing yet. Will
add snails once removed.
Mated pair of Skunk Clowns
Tail Spot Blenny
Yellow watchman Goby
Red-head Salon Wrasse
Med Neon Green Swirl Hammer Colony- about 8 heads
Large Silver Hammer Colony about 30 heads
Med. Duncan Colony, about 40 heads
Large Pink Birdsnest
Med Sunset Red Montipora digitata
Med Green Montipora spumosa
Small Purple Bushy Acropora
Small Tabling Acropora
Med Green Montipora Digitata
Med Red/Pink Montipora capricornis (4)
Med Orange Montipora capricornis
Sm. Yellow Colony Polyp rock
Sm. Radio-active Dragon Eye Zoanthids
Large Caribbean Eunicia Gorgonian
Green Trumpet colony- about 6-7 heads
Med Rose Anemone
6 tiny Blue Leg Hermits
Med. Pistol Shrimp
The SPS's that have been fading are red Montipora capricornis (5 medium
colonies) and my prize red digitata. All corals grew wonderfully in my
last tank under T-5 and Halide lighting. It is strange because the cap's
exhibited decent growth, vasing upwards nicely while losing much of
their red color. Another culprit is an unidentified Acropora which did
Other SPS corals are either growing extremely slowly while maintaining
most coloration. All LPS corals show a maximum of about 40% polyp
extension. For some reason, they just don't expand. All other corals
including the Rose anemone are doing well.
<The latter can/does derive more nutrient from direct feeding>
I've deduced that the problem has to be among the following:
1) Water motion
2) Lighting (not sure if its quality, quantity or duration)
3) Allelopathic compounds from the Eunicia or GSP or other culprit,
although I removed the Eunicia for about 3 months with no improvement.
4) Problems from carbon dosing (Red Sea NoPoX)- (Perhaps over filtration
with DSB, chemical media, skimmer, mud, algae, and Carbon dosing?)
<Yes... the overall lack of Nitrate, soluble Phosphate. Pull this
product, feed a bit more...>
I fear that I will lose all of my red capricornis's soon, as they are
getting close to pure white in color! I've spend thousands on this
system and I've tried to tailor it to meet the needs of the SPS corals
but it appears that I'm failing! Any suggestions?
<The above... you could directly chemically feed the system; not the
better route here>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Quick Question 10/24/14
Hope all is well. I just bought your book a few months ago on sea
anemones. Thank you as it as helped me in the health of my sea
They might have wasted away otherwise. Quick Dip question:
Purchased four aquacultured clownfish, Spotcinctus Clownfish, Slow
dripped acclimated them and put them in a 40
gallon QT Tank. Question 1: From what I have
read on WWM one of the posts states that Amphiprionines should
not get a freshwater dip upon initially receiving them? Is this
<Usually unnecessary; particularly with captive produced stock
(shouldn't have any issues, parasites that such a procedure would help;
If not they are already in the QT tank; what next steps should I take?
<Move to permanent display>
Should I freshwater dip (pH and temperature adjusted) to the main tank
the QT period is over?
<Not UNLESS there's something obvious that calls for dip/bathing>
I have some Nitrofuracin green from NFP. Would
this be a good preventative if I was supposed to freshwater dip (pH and
temp adjusted) before putting in the QT?
<Mmm; no; not really. Not enough "gets inside" dipped fishes in such
I guess I am trying to understand if I made a
mistake, and if I did what do I need to do to fix it.
<No worries Nick. Bob Fenner>
Part 2 of clownfish question
*Just an fyi I did read the below summary, and that's where I found the
discrepancy on freshwater dips, and wanted to know about the
Nitrofuracin green. Best,*
*Treatment: Prevention, as usual, is the rule.*
1) Pick out reasonable stock as detailed in the selection of this
2) Do a brief freshwater dip to remove some/most external grunge (a
3) Quarantine your new stock if at all possible/practical with or
without their anemone for a couple of weeks. Using a mild bacterial
medication is suggested; Maracyn II (tm) is excellent.
<Erythromycin? Who wrote this? Can you give me the location of this
4) Introduce them to their new viable, permanent aquarium. After
acclimation, add a "slime-coat" water conditioner.
Note: If you can't procure quarantine quarters, ask your retailer to
hold your charges for you on deposit.
If you find yourself with clownfish with an apparent
infection/infestation that seems to necessitate treatment:
1) Check and adjust your water quality. Most "disease" conditions of
captive aquatic systems are a result of poor water or system quality. Do
not just start pouring a therapeutic into your tank(s). Often, moving
clown's to a different system effects a fast "cure".
2) After quickly doing whatever you can to "re-center" your system,
consider further treatments in the following order of priority:
A) Biological: Add a symbiotic anemone if you don't have one or move the
fish/es to a system with one. Add a cleaner; a suitable Labroides wrasse
(if you can secure a "good one" that has survived the rigors of capture,
movement, acclimation to captive conditions), or better a cleaner goby,
cleaner shrimp; they work.
B) Physical: Lower your specific gravity. Even with most invertebrates,
dropping the specific gravity a few thousandths per day to 1.018-1.019
will not do permanent damage and may shift the balance of favorable
conditions to your fishes.
C) Chemicals: Last and least. Be careful. Clown fish are like "canaries
in a cave". They tend to be sensitive to the same toxins as their host
Actinarians (anemones). Copper, other metal salts, organic or metallic
dyes, furan compounds, and organophosphate pesticides all have
deleterious to disastrous effects. These substances in various
formulations, comprise most of the "medicine treatments" available and
used in our aquatics interest. They do have some limited, appropriate
applications in bare marine treatment tanks. 'Nuff said?
<Reads like summat (word order, use) I'd write>
These chemical therapeutics are dangerous and unnecessary with
"Experiment" with them only as a last resort.
Mars Aquarium Group Sacramento. Pres.
My name is Anthony Wong and I am the Vp of the Marine Aquarist of
<Ah yes; have spoken there a few times>
Since i am building the calendar for 2015 I figured i would contact you
to see if you are available. Our meetings are held on the 3rd Fridays of
every month from 7pm to 10pm and we have close to 75 paid members.
Please send back a estimate on your fees, travel needs and if you would
be interested in speaking at the club. Also with a list of topics you
could speak on.
<Only travel costs (though don't turn down honorariums, 'ifics); most
any time, topics. You can see my background on the Net... WWM,
I look forward to hearing from you
VP of MARS
<Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Re: On site consults; Carangid dis.
Vibrio vulnificus and Vibrio harveyi were found in the lookdowns,
<Common; likely secondary... i.e., not the immediate or ultimate cause>
as well as enlarged livers
<This is telling... from what sorts of biological stress?>
from their necropsy, which is not complete yet.
water changes; GF
I have a 20 gallon aquarium with one currently, 4 inch Shubunkin., If i
change out 2 gallons of water three times a week is that sufficient?
<Mmm; yes; though this "comet" related variety of goldfish need MUCH
more room than a twenty ultimately. 20% change-outs once a week are
fine; via gravel vacuuming. Best done w/ stored water per the SOP on
WWM. Bob Fenner>
Freshwater Angelfish Questions 10/22/14
I am writing on behalf of a customer who is having issues
keeping Angelfish. It begins with Popeye in both eyes,
and then the Angel's stomachs begin to swell up. There is no
notable pineconing of the scales, and the fish continue to eat. The
swelling is even on either side. The customer is concerned that issues
have stemmed from possibly overfeeding dry AquaDine formula,
or that there is something occurring in the tank.
<Possibly, but doesn't sound very likely. A modern dried flake food
should make a perfectly suitable staple diet for common community fish
such as Angels.>
The tank is a 90 Gallon that's been established for a little over 2
Temperature is 80 (he read that's what Angels like).
<Indeed, though warm water needs improved circulation to keep oxygen
levels up. The warmer the water, the lower the stocking density.>
Current inhabitants include 5 Black Neon Tetras and 3 White Skirt
Water changes are performed monthly in the amount of 25-30%. Today's
water test results:
Nitrate = 20
Nitrite = 0
Total Hardness - 150
Chlorine = 0
Alkalinity = 180
pH Freshwater = 7.8
Ammonia = 0
<Okay, but the water is a bit on the hard side.>
He added 6 juvenile Angels in May, 2013. The first Angel died on its own
in early May. It had PopEye and a swollen belly. Another Angel died on
its own shortly after the first. Over the course of a year, the
remaining 4 Angels died.
After those died, he added an adult female who lived with an adult male
in a 72 Gallon display tank. They were in that tank for over 3 years and
had no issues during that time. The male died of undetermined causes,
and eventually we decided to sell the female. She died within two days
of being added to the customer's tank. Per policy on refunds, I tested
his water. I don't have the exact parameters, but according to our
customer notes, it was good enough for us to warrant a replacement of
the fish (Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate less than 40,
pH varies per fish).
<All sounds fine.>
He medicated the tank from 10/1 thru 10/9 with Melafix
<Useless; do point him in the direction of worthwhile
medications such as the antibiotics.>
& did a 33% water change on the 10th. He's also added a light dose of
<Does little or even makes things worse. Do remind him salt is a
medication for very specific situations where freshwater fish are being
kept. It is not a cure-all.>
None of the remaining 8 fish ( 3 Tetra Skirt Long Fin & 5 Black Neon
Tetra ) are eating much if anything. The Black Neon used swim all over &
pretty energetic but now they are hanging near the top.
<Environment is the obvious thing to review where a bunch of fish are
getting sick for no obvious reasons. Do a substantial water change,
clean the filter to ensure a good throughput of water, check stocking,
lower the waterline to improve "splashing" which mixes oxygen and water
better. If it were me, I'd strip the tank down and give it a good clean.
Keep the filter running while doing so, but change as much water as
practical. Re-acclimate the fish as if you'd just bought them, using the
drip method or similar, across 30-60 min.s. Remove anything old and
decaying (e.g., bogwood) and especially clean the gravel (deep gravel
beds can hide all kinds of problems if there aren't burrowing snails
and/or vigorous plants to oxygenate the gravel). If problems persist,
even with a deep clean, or such seems unwarranted, then some sort of
biological problem might be suspected. Velvet often affects the gills
first, causing respiratory distress, hence "gasping" behaviour, even
where the telltale golden/white dusting isn't visible. Many good
<See above. Cheers, Neale.>
My male angelfish 10/22/14
Hello, I'm having a problem with my angel pair. I've had a female for a
couple years solo in a 90g discus focused community tank.
<Discus and Angels aren't a great combo; but I guess yours were okay.>
She appears to be female (although never seen eggs), so I moved her to a
40g a couple months ago and introduced a male (presumed). They've been
friends and the male has had his papilla out most of the time.
<Indeed; clearly a male.>
She hasn't shown interest until recently, like over the last 4 days, and
they've started to shimmy and do the mating rituals, her papilla out,
cleaning the back wall and sword leaf).
They gently peck or kiss each other but the female seems to be getting
less gentle. He doesn't move away, kind of tilts over at her mercy. His
pectoral fins are getting shredded (area she pecks at him) but the worst
is his eyes. They've been damaged to the point he can't see:(. I noticed
last night his eyes were looking cloudy and raised, and tonight they've
gotten much worse. I can see blood on the lower part of his eye!
<Indeed. Separate them. The female can/will reject the male, and vice
versa, and in the wild would go looking for other partners. If they
can't get apart, then trouble can develop. An old trick is to use
crate so the fish are separated but can see each other. Sometimes they
get "that loving feeling" back pretty quickly. Other times takes longer.
All else fails, return one/both to the main school of Angels, and wait
pairs to form again. If it's an option, isolate the injured fish for a
few weeks to heal up. Angels can be terrible bullies towards injured
It's a planted tank and very cared for. Both my aquariums are pristine
in water quality and care. I have 2 pairs out of 6 discus who breed in
my 90 weekly:) the 40g angel tank is the same quality, and the Angels
have been thriving and in perfect health (as are my 7 neons and 3 Corys
in the 40).
I know this isn't disease, and don't want to salt the tank because of
the plants. Just wondered if I leave it alone will it heal, and is this
behaviour common to Angels or even heard of?
<Quite common with all cichlids. The flip side to having good parenting
instincts is a certain pickiness when it comes to partners.>
Is she going to continue this damage? He's still shimmying with her,
poor guy:( My discus are so peaceful in comparison, never experienced
Thank you for any advice you can offer.
<Most welcome, Neale.>
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