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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

1" thick acrylic is warped over a 5 ft Span     10/20/17
Hi
I'm building my own tank and have a slight issue with a warped piece of acrylic. The piece is 12" wide by 60" long and 1" thick. I picked up the 1" stuff for the tank. I looked at the coast to coast external overflow box pieces. 12"x60". In the picture you can see that across the length I have a warp of about 3mm. The "right" end of the picture is with both pieces laying flat and you can see the warp. The edge is straight on the piece it will attach to. Checked with a straight edge. Thinner stuff no prob to straighten it out. 1" not so easy. Is it do able with clamps, shims and heat?
<Mmm; is the warp just in the "run", not the "rise" of this 1" material? IF so, then I'd leave as is. IF the rise is off this much, you'll need to do something.... re-cut it to flush before solventing>
I don't really want to router off 3mm extra in the middle after glue up (wood term :)))). Right now I have placed a small 3mm spacer under the middle of the warped piece and weighted the ends. If it gets warm enough outside today do you think the warp will fix itself or is it something that requires more than 90 degree heat? Heat gun or hair dryer? Any ideas?
<Heat and time will help the material to relax. Heating with a hair dryer I don't recommend. Do you have a plastics fabricator/shop nearby? They may have an oven to do this job for you>
Cheers
Dana
<And you, Bob Fenner>

Thank you!     10/20/17
Needed info on bacterial infections and read article by Myron Roth. It was both detailed and helpful. Very much appreciated.
Best Regards,
Adrianna Laszlo
--
<Have sent on your kind words to Myron. Bob Fenner>

re: 90 gallon reef tank     10/18/17
These are the best I can get.
<.... wouldn't worry re these. IF/when the system is empty, dry, perhaps some Weld-On 4 as gone over on WWM. BobF>

re: 90 gallon reef tank     10/18/17
So this tank is ok to use as my main tank?
<Yes>
Also if we're get some weld on 4 how would I get it into the cracks since they are not open to the tank inside or out?
<Only at the seams. B>
re: 90 gallon reef tank     10/18/17

Ok you are awesome thank you so much
<Welcome. B>

Kole Tang; hlth., and Cu f'      10/18/17
Good afternoon Crew,
<Dave>
I unfortunately experienced a loss in my tank last night - my Kole tang.
I've had a Kole Tang previously for years... a curious outgoing fish that was constantly on the move. I have a shallow 60g tank, 79f, 1.024 salinity, no signs of nitrates/nitrites/ammonia - although I have been purposely
allowing a little hair algae to grow for the upcoming arrival of my Kole Tang. I'd say overall I feed rather lightly, sometimes every second day (but am observing my fish growing/fattening up), and only enough that just
a small amount of thawed frozen Mysis/brine/etc... falls to the substrate for my snails/crabs/serpent star, etc
I currently have a few corals, bta, two clowns, yellow watchman goby, royal gramma... I noticed a plump Kole Tang with what appeared to be ICK at my LFS and offered to buy him at a greatly reduced price because I've
successfully QT and treated ICKY fish with Cupramine in the past, and without losses. The Kole Tang went straight into my 30g QT bare bottom tank and I followed the Cupramine instructions as always. The Kole Tang would sometimes eat, sometimes not, but frequently picking away at scraps that had stuck to the foam cover on the filter. He remained active and plump for the 16day QT. With the Cupramine treatment over and no signs of white spots, and what looked like a healthy active fish... I introduced him to my display tank.
The Kole Tang's been shy, not as active, and while I've witnessed him picking away at the glass and rocks from time to time, I rarely saw him feeding with the other fish. Almost two weeks later... Last night, he was on his side in the corner of my tank and breathing rapidly. He still looked to be of a healthy size, but something was obviously wrong. I felt that removing him at that point would cause more stress and certain death.
Watched my cleaner shrimp jump on him at that point, and the Kole Tang swam away. I checked on him this morning and his outer body had been completely picked away by hermit crabs and my serpent starfish.
Question... do you think the death may still be Ick related, even though he appeared to have successfully finished a Cupramine treatment?
<Ick/Crypt might have been a factor... to extent here. As well as the copper exposure. I suspect this fish had a trauma issue though. Perhaps from collection, holding, transport...>
I don't think anything in my tank could've harmed him, and he had no wounds of any sort. I'm assuming my small to medium sized bubble tip anemone wouldn't have been the culprit (unless the BTA had actually caught him and was eating him)?
<Could have had a brush here as well>
I'm stumped... I thought I had success in saving this fish from the store.
Dave
<Sometimes Dave, sometimes not. Bob Fenner>
Re: Kole Tang     10/18/17

Could a simple brush from the BTA have done something like that?
<Not likely a Ctenochaetus tang would perish from glancing a BTA; no; not of/by itself>
I was thinking possibly trauma from collection, but in the QT he was really active, breathing at what I perceived to be a normal rate, etc... Cupramine indicates to treat at .5mg/l, and that toxic levels exist at .8mg/l My
treatment was definitely at .5mg/l, having checked multiple times throughout the 16 days. Are some fish (tangs?) more delicate with copper treatments?
Dave
<Re copper exposure; there is no sub-physiological dose. Akin to old treatments of humans by mercuricals and arsenicals; you're killing the host by degrees along w/ the parasite. Tangs are amongst the most sensitive fishes to copper poisoning. Bob Fenner>

90 gallon reef tank... cracks. Crazing?      10/17/17
I have a used 90 gallon reef tank with these cracks at the top of the tank at the overflow. The overflow is on the side. You can't feel them from the inside or outside. Or these fixable or is my tank done and should be
trashed
<.... I take it this system is acrylic... Need to see well-resolved images of the "bad areas" to give much of a solid opinion. Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/acraqleaks.htm
and the linked files (above, in blue), and send along the images when you can. Bob Fenner>

Care on Thorichthys helleri?     10/16/17
Hello, crew.
<Hello again Roberto,>
Last time I contacted you about my Uaru, I guess an updated is needed. He didn't make it lamentably, so this is a lesson for me on keeping delicate soft water species, and staying away from unnecessarily small fish (I got him at probably less than 3 cm). The bigger Uaru (19-20 cm) is as lively as ever. I do in fact keep him in warmer water and gets his share of greens.
<Lesson learned, I guess!>
Anyway, on a new topic, a local hobbyist has brought in what supposedly are wild caught Thorichthys helleri, but as far as I know its way more possible for them to be aureus. They are from rio Izabal, Guatemala. They range from 4 to 6 cm.
<There are several Thorichthys species, and identifying juveniles is very hard. Will direct you here, to Fishbase:
http://www.fishbase.org/identification/SpeciesList.php?genus=Thorichthys
According to Fishbase at least, the only Thorichthys species in Guatemala are Thorichthys affinis, Thorichthys aureus, Thorichthys meeki, and Thorichthys pasionis.>
I've read conflicting information about them. Fish base cites them as hard, alkaline water fish, in the range of 23 to 26C, but a couple other sources cites them at the upper ranges, 28, 29 C. which doesn't sound quite right to me, Guatemala is quite cool.
<Indeed, but often the temperature is more to do with the immediate environment. Shallow, still pools in grasslands tend to get hot, while shaded rainforest streams are cooler, and fast water upland streams will be cooler still.>
There is not much information about these guys online, could you shed some light?
<So far as temperature goes, 25 C will be a useful default. All Thorichthys species are sand-sifters, so a tank with a soft substrate rather than gravel is required. Their tall body shape is indicative of slower to still water, so avoid turbulent currents, but as with all cichlids, decent turnover is required to manage the nitrogen cycle properly and ensure there's lots of oxygen. The diet in the wild of all Thorichthys is a mix of algae, organic detritus, and small benthic invertebrates such as insect larvae and worms, so structure their diet accordingly. Because of their delicate sand-sifting jaw structures, do not mix with other cichlids likely to pick fights. Dwarf cichlids are usually fine though.>
I have a spare 45 gal where I might try a small group for breeding purposes, but not sure if these are alike their cousins the meeki. We catch wild meeki, not hard at all to keep, but I've heard the other, rarer species are more delicate.
<The Thorichthys meeki are only hardier because they've been bred for so many generations. Otherwise Thorichthys are much of a muchness: sensitive to nitrate, but not especially delicate.>
Thanks, as always.
Roberto
<Welcome. Neale.>

Re: Complete Wipe Out of Most of My Fish     10/16/17
The service’s explanation was they used too much dechlorinator, but that sounds doubtful to me.
<Indeed, but see previous reply.>
My family carefully meters out the food, and the amount of green beans was only a couple of small slices. They’ve done it many times before so I doubt it was the cause.
<Agreed, that being the case.>
The water is well oxygenated with a lot of water movement. The tank also doesn’t get any direct sunlight.
<Good.>
I’m personally leaning towards the bleach, or at least overcleaning the biofilter media.
<Quite so.>
I’ve never seen them use bleach before, so it is very possible the person using it wasn’t very experienced with it.
<Agreed.>
I’m honestly not sure exactly what to do now. I know I at least need to replace the giant Danios soon (there is a sole survivor, and he is not happy at all without his school) but if the biofilter has been reduced a lot I guess I need to do this very slowly.
<Yes, but in fairness, even if the filter is down to 10% of the bacteria it originally had, it'll "cycle" within a few days. It's not like starting a filter from scratch. Plenty of bacteria in the tank to colonise the sterilised filter media.>
-Lynnie
<Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Need help with dying Uaru; also Gold Saum/Green Terror compatibility      10/16/17
Funny, I decided to check the filtered messages of my inbox and three of them were from WetWebMedia, and here I was thinking there was a bit of inconsistence with the emails!
<Oh!>
Thanks by the way, now that I realize, I have quite a few tanks, but I have the space and caring for them doesn't take long, really. I would like to reduce the number of tanks into bigger ones. I find it easier to care for a single 100 gal than say, 4 x25 gals. This is the reason I am aiming at keeping a single south American tank, but I was really unsure of the green terrors.
<Agree that one big tank is easier than four smaller ones, but does assume all the fish get alone/share the same requirements.>
As you said, they are commonly kept here with central Americans, but from the look of things they commonly are the punching bags of Midas, red devils, salvinis and... ugh, doviis, those are true demons.
<Correct. But if you combine with less aggressive, but equally robust, Central American cichlids they're fine. In a 200-gallon system I've kept them with Convicts for example, which are smaller than the Green Terror, but able to handle themselves if they need to. I do think keeping singleton cichlids is the way to go here: one Green Terror, one Jewel Cichlid, one Convict, and so on would probably be fine. It's (usually) when cichlids form mated pairs and start defending their nests that things get nasty.>
Actually, many people have trouble raising GTs to adulthood. Most losses I've seen show GTs with sunken stomachs, not sure why is it that people have such hard time with them.
<All sorts of reasons. They're probably pretty inbred by now -- the species isn't a significant target for collection from the wild, so the population of captive fish isn't getting topped up with genes from wild specimens. Green Terrors were never popular -- for reasons of aggression -- so the actual starting populations in most countries was pretty small. So over time you've got a lot of fish descended from a handful of specimens, and combined with all the usual problems with tank-bred cichlids (exposure to bacterial infections, Hexamita, etc.) the quality of what you see today isn't very high.>
In fact, the general consensus of people here is that green terrors are bottom tier in aggressiveness and among the hardest to keep, hence why I thought they would do fine in the future 540 gal with the rest of south Americans.
<In a really big tank, then possibly a singleton or pair might be okay with schools of fast-moving, midwater characins and shy, nocturnal catfish that are essentially invisible and out-of-reach during the day. But I would not think of mixing them with any other South Americans, certainly not other Acaras, or for that matter Pikes, Festivums, or Severums. I'm sure people have combined them with really big South Americans such as Oscars or Peacocks, but neither of these two fish are aggressive as such, but very powerful if pushed, so it's difficult to predict what will happen for sure. I would much prefer to stick with the Green Terrors as the only cichlids, and everything else to be either a characin or a catfish.>
Both my green terrors have grown with the company of Raphael catfish. The biggest, 22 cm one is timid and will most of the time hide in between woodwork and come out when I get away from the tank. The smaller, 15 cm one comes out to receive me and eats (and bites!) from my hand. Two very different personalities.
<Quite so; could they be male and female?>
I also have an aquarium with blue Acara and aequidens diadema, but I was looking which of these fish could go together.
<I would not keep either of these Acaras with Green Terrors. Much too similar in shape, colouration and ecological niche -- but far below them in aggression.>
So, the green terrors are out of the question of the future 540 gal right?
<See above.>
would it be possible to do a single, Acara themed aquarium (diadema, blue Acara, green terrors?) I have never witnessed the actual territoriality of my green terrors as they were never kept with other cichlids, just Loricariids, but I trust you know better.
<Not so much know better -- just more aware, perhaps, of how often the combination can go wrong! Whenever you see a really colourful fish that's easy to keep -- but nobody keeps them -- you have to ask yourself why. Green Terrors and Jewel Cichlids are two examples of this. Look nice, behave badly. Cheers, Neale.>

Complete Wipe Out of Most of My Fish       Neale's take     10/15/17
Dear WetWebMedia Crew,
<<Hello Lynnie,>>
While I was away from home, something unexpected happened that wiped out all but four of my fish. I had left my fish in the care of my family, and the monthly aquarium service that comes to do a more thorough clean down, and the fish were perfectly healthy. I had left a care guide for my family, and they were doing weekly water changes and feeding the fish a mix of dry and fresh foods. They had done this for my past two years of grad school without issue.
However, two days after the service came, the tank completely clouded over, becoming opaque white, and almost all the fish abruptly died. I was not there, but my parents complained to the service, and the service claimed they had had accidentally not dechlorinated the water properly. They then came a few more times to clean up the mess, and the water is clear now. The remaining four fish are healthy, and there is no nitrite or ammonia in the water, so it appears the biofilter was not destroyed.
Because I was not there, I do not have a lot of information, so I apologize in advance. However, I have to wonder what it is that could have happened.
Here are the possibilities that were raised:
1. Too much dechlorinator used. This was the excuse the service gave, but I was under the impression that unless aquarium conditions were 'marginal' the deoxygenating effect of dechlorinators is not much of an issue.
<<Unlikely, unless they did something dumb like use the (super-concentrated) pond dechlorinator in your aquarium.>>
2. Faulty heater. Apparently the temperature in the tank got stuck at 82 degrees Fahrenheit after the service came. But again, not sure if that would be enough to wipe the fish out (the tank is 105 gallons, so it's not small.)
<<If the tank thermometer was set this high, and the tank actually warmed up to 28C/82F, then it is certainly possible for low-end tropicals (Danios, Platies, Neons, Corydoras) to become stressed, especially if oxygen
concentration wasn't that high to begin with. On the other hand, short-term (a few days) exposure to high-end tropical temperatures in well-filtered tanks with lots of water movement shouldn't be an issue. Still, if the
heater is set too high, and the tank also receives direct sunlight, it is most than possible for the aquarium to get much, MUCH hotter, and that can/will stress, or kill, fish that aren't adapted to prolonged high temperatures.>>
3. Clorox. Apparently the service used bleach to clean the decor before putting back in the aquarium, and there is the possibility they did not wash it off correctly. The service claimed this is something they regularly do without issue, but I have never seen them use Clorox before.
<<This can/will kill fish very quickly if significant amounts get in the tank. But merely cleaning ornaments, and rinsing thoroughly, shouldn't be a problem. Of course if one of the guys was new to the business, and didn't
know how well to rinse things, then there's a risk.>>
4. The service removed a lot of snail shells that were in the gravel. Is it possible they could have abruptly changed the pH by doing so?
<<Unlikely. While snail shells do dissolve in water, and quite rapidly (a few weeks, even) if the water is soft and acidic, in chemistry terms the process is slow, and unlikely to cause significant changes fast enough to kill the fish.>>
5. The fish are regularly given fresh vegetables. However, one of my family members gave them green bean slices that were in the fridge for 10 days prior. Could they have been rotten and killed the fish?
<<Depends on the amount of greens. Large amounts of decaying vegetation can/will remove oxygen from the water, leading to oxygen stress in the fish. But you'd need serious amounts for this: for a 200 gallon tank say,
I'd be thinking a couple cupfuls of greens rotting away would be necessary, not a couple string beans!>>
I need to acquire a new nitrate, pH, and GH test kit, so all I can say is there is no ammonia and nitrite at this moment, unfortunately.
-Lynnie
<<All very mysterious, but hopefully not likely to be repeated. Did the service company offer any explanations? The fact the tank became white suggests a bacterial or diatom bloom, the former if it was a more milky white, the latter if there was a golden tinge. Anyway, both are connected with environmental instability, the classic being "new tank syndrome" but it could equally easily be a change in water chemistry caused by the addition or removal of some soluble chemical such as lime, or else clumsy maintenance of the filter that removed too much of the mature filter medium. The latter scenario would indeed cause a rapid die-off of the fish, as the filter capacity drops, but once the 'surplus' fish have died and been removed, the remaining biological filter capacity would be adequate for the remaining fish, so you wouldn't detect an ammonia and nitrite spike if you only sampled water quality after the event. Make sense? Cheers, Neale.>>

Stingray pups     10/15/17
Dear WWM Crew,
I've been keeping freshwater stingrays for almost 10 years. Love 'em!
<Certainly rewarding fish, for those with the skills -- which you certainly have!>
One of my female P. motoro gave birth to four large babies last night. All are doing great.
<Well done!>
She's now flat on one side but still kind of bulging on the other side. And four is a small litter for her. So I'm assuming she only gave birth from one uterus and will give birth from the other either today or soon. My
question is, "Is it possible for stingrays to give birth several days apart?"
<Certainly several hours can elapse between first and last pup in a litter, and I guess a day or two might be possible. Still, I'd be getting a bit nervous at this point in case there's a blockage of some sort. A substantial water change, and turning off the lights, would be two obvious things to do. The first to dilute any of the fluids and wastes from birth, and the latter to reduce stress. I'd think about Epsom salt too, as this mild laxative might help delivery the babies if they're not quite out but on their way.>
Thanks as always for your wonderful site.
Margie
<Do think about posting at Monster Fishkeepers. While that forum plays a bit fast-and-loose when it comes to using live food, it's a focal point for the big predatory fish community, and several Stingray breeders post their
regularly. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: New Pandas also Re: Epsom salts, peacock gudgeons and blockages     10/15/17
Hi Crew! I'm still battling the white blobby patches on my new panda Corydoras so here is an update of what's going on.
<Sure!>
The visit to the vet on Wednesday wasn't much use, he was reluctant to supply any medications without a diagnosis, and was unable to provide a diagnosis himself even if he had a fresh sample - he's more of a
cat/dog/horse vet, despite keeping a turtle.
<Often the case. Medicating fish with help from a vet is the ideal, but rarely practical. It can also get expensive given the low cost of fish, though it has to be said there are fish vets out there, usually specialising in Koi, the best of which reach prices comparable with pedigree dogs and horses! My point being if you have a local or national
Koi club, they might be able to point you in the direction of a fish-friendly vet.>
He did suggest some places that might be able to give me a diagnosis and prescription, but they are all quite far away and mostly oriented towards trout farming so it didn't really help. I don't think I'm getting a prescription any time soon, and not soon enough to help my fish anyway.
Once again I'm thwarted by living in the middle of nowhere!
<Oh!>
I did manage to get a better scraping from one of my Corydoras and some of a white patch came off so I had a look at it under my own microscope. I didn't see any movement at all in any of the sample, and I also didn't see
any fibrous structures so I am much more confident now that it is bacterial and not Costia or fungus.
<Understood.>
The white stuff was fairly sticky so I am guessing it is either fish slime or a bacterial film. Zoomed in, it looked a lot like the chunks you get when you stir up gelatin jelly. Not much else to see at x100, my entry level microscope is not so useful this time.
<Certainly fungus should be obvious as x40, let alone x100; Protozoans a bit variable in this regard, but at x100 I'd expect to see something moving about or waving their cilia! As you say though, bacteria are elusive at x100.>
I stopped using Multicure (M. blue, M. green & Acriflavine) in the tank as it was not really working and was making it too hard to see what was going on, and continued with the course of triple sulfa. I found on day 3, the
day before the second dose was due, the patches seemed thicker and were spreading. But the morning after the water change and second dose of triple sulfa, it looked like the start of recovery. Some of the Corys looked
completely clear while the other affected ones seemed slightly better.
However by the following day it was obvious that triple sulfa really was not working - maybe it was just the water change that made them look temporarily better.
<Agreed.>
The white patches are spreading again and some patches were visible on fish that were previously completely clear. The sterbai Corys also are starting to have light markings on their faces which look like they could be ulcers.
I completed the course of triple sulfa but I think at best it merely slowed the spread of the disease.
<Triple-Sulfa contains sulfamethazine, sulfacetamide, sulfathiazole, only one of which, sulfacetamide, is an antibiotic; the other two are antimicrobials. Taken together they're a bit hit-and-miss as an aquarium medication, and not really anyone's first choice. While useful enough as preventatives, for example once a fish is injured and you're concerned it might get infected with Finrot, I'd not recommend Triple-Sulfa for dealing with an established infection.>
In any case, behaviourally the fish are still all eating, acting like they are well and so on so I decided to switch to tetracycline as I think they are well enough to handle the side effects for now. I keep finding conflicting information regarding whether tetracycline will treat Columnaris but I think its worth a try since I don't have anything else at hand right now, and I don't know for sure that I'm dealing with Columnaris anyway - if it is, it must be the slow-acting strain. I have ordered some Kanaplex and furan 2 from the internet and if the tetracycline doesn't work I'll switch to whichever one gets here first - although is it true that they have a synergy effect when dosed together? I will wait and see how dire the situation is and if its not so bad maybe I'll wait for both before
treating.
<Using two antibiotics can have mileage. Being very specific, if you choose one for gram-positive and one for gram-negative, they can provide a two-pronged approach without a risk of poisoning your fish.>
I'm also considering the possibility of using the Multicure product as a bath since the Methylene blue and Acriflavine ingredients might still help and that way I'm not mixing my medications "in tank".
<Agreed; I'd tend to back off the organic dyes (Methylene blue, etc.) while using antibiotics. Whereas antibiotics are focused and have low toxicity, the dyes and antimicrobials are much more akin to poisons, intended to kill
'germs' before they kill the fish. So overuse, or combining them, can pose a risk. Do a water change, stop using the dyes, and then begin the antibiotics -- removing carbon from the filter, if used.>
I hope the tetracycline will work but it wouldn't surprise me at all if this bacteria is also resistant to tetracycline as we don't really have access to much else in Australia. So at this point I'm just planning ways to keep the fish alive until the big guns get here. The bath instructions I've read are to use water from the current tank to fill the "bath", then use the medication at double the strength intended for in-tank use. Bathe fish for 30 min.s, watching and removing back to the main tank if signs of distress are noted.
<Viable, if used carefully alongside the antibiotic.>
Multicure has 0.4% malachite green, 4% Methylene blue and 2% Acriflavine which previously the fish have tolerated fine at the recommended half strength for scaleless fish. Do you think Corydoras would handle a double
dose of this medication (which would actually be a regular dose)? How often is it necessary to bathe, once a day? Uh, don't take that last one out of context, haha.
<In other words bathe them at full dose? Personally, I would try this, but carefully watching for signs of distress.>
These little guys have lasted almost 2 weeks since arrival, and despite their external condition they still seem vigorous and I haven't lost hope that I will be able to get them to be well again, that is, as well as possible after nuking them with so much medication. What do you think of my treatment plan?
<Worth a shot!>
Cheers,
Bronwen
<Cheers, Neale.>

RE: Help please for my African Dwarf Frogs       10/14/17
Hi Neale -
Thank you so much for your response.
<Most welcome.>
I am not sure why but I originally drafted this to you in September but, for some reason, it didn't go through until October 10th. Possibly because I was on a different computer. Anyway, MaryAnn passed a couple weeks ago.
:(
<Oh dear; sorry to hear that.>
I will not be getting another frog to keep Ginger company based on your response below. As long as one frog is happy without another, I am happy with just the one!
<Indeed, this is the case. Good luck with your remaining batrachian buddy!
Cheers, Neale.>

re: White Mountain minoes       10/14/17
Wow, Thanks!
<Welcome Sonja. BobF>

Complete Wipe Out of Most of My Fish       10/14/17
Dear WetWebMedia Crew,
<Lynnie>)
While I was away from home, something unexpected happened that wiped out all but four of my fish. I had left my fish in the care of my family, and the monthly aquarium service that comes to do a more thorough clean down,
and the fish were perfectly healthy. I had left a care guide for my family, and they were doing weekly water changes and feeding the fish a mix of dry and fresh foods. They had done this for my past two years of grad school without issue.
<Rats!>
However, two days after the service came, the tank completely clouded over, becoming opaque white, and almost all the fish abruptly died. I was not there, but my parents complained to the service, and the service claimed they had had accidentally not dechlorinated the water properly. They then came a few more times to clean up the mess, and the water is clear now.
The remaining four fish are healthy, and there is no nitrite or ammonia in the water, so it appears the biofilter was not destroyed.
<Ah, good>
Because I was not there, I do not have a lot of information, so I apologize in advance. However, I have to wonder what it is that could have happened.
Here are the possibilities that were raised:
1. Too much dechlorinator used. This was the excuse the service gave, but
I was under the impression that unless aquarium conditions were 'marginal' the deoxygenating effect of dechlorinators is not much of an issue.
<You are correct; it is very hard to overdose water conditioners>
2. Faulty heater. Apparently the temperature in the tank got stuck at 82 degrees Fahrenheit after the service came. But again, not sure if that would be enough to wipe the fish out (the tank is 105 gallons, so it's not small.)
<I doubt this as a cause>
3. Clorox. Apparently the service used bleach to clean the decor before putting back in the aquarium, and there is the possibility they did not wash it off correctly. The service claimed this is something they regularly do without issue, but I have never seen them use Clorox before.
<Very easy to make mistakes here>
4. The service removed a lot of snail shells that were in the gravel. Is it possible they could have abruptly changed the pH by doing so?
<Very doubtful; the CaCO3 in shells is not very soluble>
5. The fish are regularly given fresh vegetables. However, one of my family members gave them green bean slices that were in the fridge for 10 days prior. Could they have been rotten and killed the fish?
<This I do not know>
I need to acquire a new nitrate, pH, and GH test kit, so all I can say is there is no ammonia and nitrite at this moment, unfortunately.
-Lynnie
<Will share w/ Neale, as he may have other useful input. Bob Fenner>

Pseudomugil cyanodorsalis & Gobioides broussonnetii brackish tank?      10/13/17
Hi all,
<Hello Meghan,>
I have a 14 inch violet dragon goby that I'm very, very slowly planning a large tank for. He's currently in a brackish 55 by himself.
<Cool.>
I'm planning on a 200 gallon or larger. SG 1.015-1.018 so I can use a protein skimmer.
<Understood. Not essential, but useful. However...>
Do you think Pseudomugil cyanodorsalis would do well with him if I set things up properly? I've read that they can be timid & are slow eaters. I'm concerned they'd be terrified of the giant (but completely peaceful) goby.
<I'm sure it would depend on the size of the group. A school of 20-30 would probably feel much more settled than just 6 of them! I'd also be sensitive to where the Pseudomugil were collected -- while the species is listed as euryhaline, sometimes these species include strains pre-adapted to a more narrow range of salinities. While I'd expect them all to do well at SG 1.005, even ones collected from freshwater habitats, I'd be more cautious
about exposing them to near-marine environments without having taken the time to slowly adapt them and observe their behaviour.>
Another concern is that the goby is quite messy - so weekly water changes are a must. Would the blue eyes be able to handle a mild decline in water quality toward the end of the week?
<I do think in a 200 gallon tank a single Violet Goby and a large school of Blue-Eyes are unlikely to place much strain on a decent jumbo canister filter or equivalent.>
Do you have any advice for creating an environment where they'd both be
comfortable?
<I'd perhaps get the Blue-Eyes settled in first, and grown on a bit, and maybe add some other dither fish that might help them feel secure, such as Micropoecilia species. I'd also ensure plenty of hiding places for the
Violet Goby, so it wasn't too frantic when the lights were on. Although I've not seen these two species combined, Violet Gobies do work just fine with Guppies, so the theory is good!>
Thank you.
- Meghan
<Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Acrylic Aquarium Seam Failing ...Did I make it worse?      10/13/17
Thanks Again Bob
Now I need to pass-on the good karma this week ��
<Ahh. B>
--Chris

White Mountain minoes      10/13/17
Hi, I have a 5gal Fluval Chi With 3 minoes 1 micro guppies and a snail since March 2017. One of the minoes has sunk to the bottom this is the 3rd day and is eating, I do weekly water changes, today I did a 75% water
change, temps 74° to 76° add a under water filter system and more plants the fish seem to love it. Since then the bottom dweller tries to swim but goes back to the bottom the other 2 kind of carol her what could be wrong or could she be pregnant if so what can I do.
I love my fish.
Sonja
<I suspect the one fish is defective... perhaps genetically or developmentally; as the others are fine... and your tank appears well-established, stable. I would do nothing treatment-wise here. Bob Fenner>

Re: Mixing captive bred Centropyge      10/13/17
Thanks for the quick response. It seems things have deteriorated in the last couple of days, there are no real issues during the daytime but around 1-2 hours before lights out all hell breaks loose with the coral beauty
constantly chasing and attacking the flame. I guess it may be a natural instinct to defend the best/safest sleeping spot on the reef.
<Mmmm>
I think I'll give them one more night but it looks as though I may have to remove the coral beauty unless you have any advice to the contrary. It a real shame to get rid of one of them but if it continues this way I don't
think the flame will cope for long.
<I would separate these two; such overt aggression does not usually abate>
Best regards
Nick
<And you, Bob Fenner>

Re: Nuisance Algae (possibly sponge?) in saltwater tank     10/12/17
<PLEASE: No files more than a few hundred Kbytes... >
A thin layer will cover the glass just within a few days if I leave the lights on. Here are two additional photos I took. I will check it under a microscope and see what I come up with.
<Do send along reduced size, highly resolved pic/x if you can>
Thanks for your help!
-Justin
<Thank you for sharing. BobF>
Re: Nuisance Algae (possibly sponge?) in saltwater tank     10/12/17

I will send the microscope images over when I get them. I was sending full size photos so they were large. I will reduce next time.
<Ahh; I thank you Justin. B>

 

Black algae? /Neale      10/12/17
Hi, could you advise what this black substance is in my tropical tank? It seems to have appeared after topping up my gravel.
<Appears to be Red Algae -- so called because of its appearance in alcohol rather than in life. Various types such as Brush Algae and Beard Algae, among others. Difficult to eliminate, but does tend to be noticeable only in certain conditions -- will direct you to some reading:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/fwsubwebindex/fwalgcontrol.htm
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ca/volume_6/volume_6_3/fwalgae.html
Essentially, a combination of good water quality, fast-growing plants, and possibly the use of suitable algae-eating fish, will be the way to keep these algae out of your tank (or at least present in innocuous amounts).
Cheers, Neale.>
Black algae?    /RMF      10/12/17

Hi, could you advise what this black substance is in my tropical tank? It seems to have appeared after topping up my gravel.
<Ah yes; does appear to be a Blue-Green "Algae" (Cyanobacteria). Does it feel slimy? Occurs in a few colors, morphologies. Please read here re:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ca/volume_6/volume_6_3/fwalgae.html
Bob Fenner>
re: Black algae?
Thank you for the prompt and helpful reply
<Most welcome! Neale.>

re: Sick Seahorse mystery     10/12/17
Thanks for your quick reply Bob, especially since you are in Mexico.
<Welcome. Can't download these pix either.... Hundreds of Kbytes, NOT megs>
I have looked up Glugea and am not convinced that this is what she has and on reading it seems that there is no cure if it is so I truly hope it isn't that.
I did think it may be a fungal infection but on closer inspection today the spots seem quite flat, unless this just means they have a burst, in which case I fear the male is now infected also.
<... bad news>
The male was a pony that I rescued from a shop and although it was sold to that shop as tank bred I was always suspicious. The female came from a breeder, Nigel Christie. I wanted to get him a new mate asap as his previous one died of snout rot.
<Ahh>
In hindsight I think perhaps I shouldn't have mixed true captive bred with an uncertainty.
<Yes; agreed>
Today the marks have kind of merged together. They are very flat and clean looking. To the point that I had a crazy idea that they were just clean patches appearing. She was this bright white before she got "grubby" in my
recently problematic tank (Cyano bacteria issues).
<Perhaps the seahorse issue is more directly an environmental manifestation>
Attached are pictures from today. They do look like lumps in the pictures but don't feel lumpy today. That is probably a bad sign :(
I guess I'm a dreamer. Is there anything at all that I can try to save
her/them?
<Have you read over this bit on WWM:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/seahorsecare.htm
She really isn't behaving irritated by this at all, my priority right now is getting some food into her maybe with a canella.
Thanks again,
Georgina
<Welcome. No more large files... we've exceeded our webmail capacity (50 megs...) Folks are getting bounced. BobF>
re: Sick Seahorse mystery     10/12/17

Thanks again Bob. Massive apologies for sending such large files, I must see if I can shrink my pics before sending, I didn't realise they were so big.
<Ahh; I thank you Georgina>
Thanks for the link to the seahorse guide, I most likely have seen it before but it's always worth a reminder (clearly!)
<Good>
I thought I was doing the right thing ensuring that I got him a captive bred seahorse of the same breed but if he turned out to be wild caught maybe not so much of a good idea. I never intended to EVER buy from my LFS
as I know they don't get them from a reputable source. I only ended up with that pair as he had gas trapped in his pouch and was sure to die if I didn't. He has been doing great since I got rid of the gas and has been living with me. Unfortunately his mate died unexpectedly a few weeks after I got them and I panicked he would pine away.
<I see/understand>
My other seahorses are Erectus from Tom Hornsby and they are in a separate system. I have had the females 2 years and recently got them boyfriends.
They are all doing very well together I'm pleased to say, definitely worth getting them from a reputable breeder such as Tom.
<Indeed; agreed>
I have had some issues with the other setup recently so wouldn't be surprised if that's where the infection came from. Too long a story to add here but needless to say I will be doing my best to eradicate said issues before any seahorses should return.
<A wise approach>
I am a stickler for water quality so would be devastated if my husbandry caused this. I believe it was new sand that I put in that caused a bloom, wish I'd never done it.
Thanks so much again and so sorry for blocking your emails with my files.
Georgina.
<Cheers dear. B>
re: Sick Seahorse mystery     10/12/17

Cheers dear :)))) thanks for giving me a well needed chuckle Bob :)
<Welcome Lil G. B>
re: Sick Seahorse mystery     10/12/17

Hi Bob,
<Georgina>
Just thought I'd let you know that sadly I lost the girl and am quite concerned he has it too.
<Am sure you're right. This issue IS pathogenic>
Someone suggested Vibrio....any thoughts? One whole side of her ended up completely white like her original healthy colour and the other side just had big patches (2 or 3) not individual spots anymore. I won't send pics lol
<Vibrio is a possibility>
So so upset that this has happened. Many tough lessons learnt though and I doubt I'll be rescuing anymore from shops after this awful experience sadly
:'(
Thanks for all your help.
Georgina
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Re: Need help with dying Uaru; also Gold Saum/Green Terror compatibility     10/12/17
Hello, thanks for the very informative response.
The guy is now swimming upright and is more responsive to stimulus. I may actually believe CO2 overdosing was at play here also. I will be checking on his fins in a while when I arrive home.
some addressing of the points you told me:
this is the tank that receives the most maintenance, it stays at around 7.5 ph, 8 dGH and 8 dh (I know, not optimal).
<For Uaru, likely life-shortening if wild-caught, suboptimal (as you say) for tank-bred specimens. Would review water chemistry here if at all possible.>
I just want to point out I actually have another Uaru, this one is 20 cm adult I got last year and have kept in a south American cichlid aquarium (230 gal), but I got him already at the 15 cm mark.
<The larger size certainly helps, and the sheer size of this second aquarium probably moderates stress factors to some degree too. But simply because one fish did well in suboptimal conditions isn't a guarantee that a second specimen will do equally well.>
The small and big Uarus do get greens, since I also keep a couple fancy Plecos feeding them zucchinis and other greens also involves the Uarus feeding. Also, the small Uaru nibbles on plants, particularly Hygrophila and staurogyne species which he devours happily.
<Precisely.>
I also feed a combination of Spirulina and normal flakes with new life spectrum to all fish, although all in all they do get their share of meaty foods, which probably isn't good as you have pointed out.
<I would avoid, in all honesty. As with Tropheus and other more or less herbivorous cichlids, providing too much meaty foods will cause problems, though to what degree is certainly debatable.>
Water temp of the planted tank stays at 25-26C, so yeah, below what is needed.
<Quite so.>
All in all I reckon he's not in the best of conditions, even less for a 4 cm fish, which are more delicate than adult, robust fish.
<I agree with this analysis and conclusion.>
Thank you, I will probably set up a different tank for him to grow out while he reaches the size to go to the main cichlid tank.
<Wise.>
I will also be upgrading the cichlid tank, the jump will be towards a 540 gal. The current main south American has the adult Uaru, 2 Geophagus steindachneri, 1 Green phantom Pleco,
<A "hothouse flower" of an L-number, so a superb choice for life with Uaru.>
1 blue phantom,
<A definite low-end tropical this time! 22-25 C preferred. So a poor choice for a Uaru tank.>
and a school of 5 Festivums.
<I do think Festivums are rather lovely fish! Happy enough at high-end temperatures, but a bit more omnivorous than the Uaru, so not a perfect companion.>
I have two adult Andinoacara rivulatus in separate tanks. I was wondering if they would be compatible with the rest of the fish in the eventual 540 gal?
<Ah, beautiful fish these, but not easy to keep. These are the old "Gold Saum" of the 1970s/1980s, also known as the "Green Terror" because it was regularly confused with the much more placid, but similar-looking, Blue Acara -- but so aggressive it could decimate your community tank! On the one hand, like (most) other Acaras, it's a good choice for low-end tropical systems, 22-25 C, and tankmates should be chosen accordingly. It won't be happy in the same warm water (25-28 C) that your Uaru or Green Phantom Plec would need. But it is aggressive, and tankmates need to be able to handle themselves. L-numbers of similar size are good choices, as are equally big and robust characins and cyprinids, for example Silver Sharks or Leporinus spp., but only with singletons -- mated pairs are far more destructive and invariably kept alone. For sure odd specimens were docile enough, but in truth most Gold Saums ended up living in rough-and-tumble Central American cichlid tanks or on their own.>
Thank you
Sincerely
Roberto
<Most welcome. Neale.>

Help please for my African Dwarf Frogs     10/12/17
Hi - Just so you know, I am one of those people that Google everything and anything and am usually pretty successful in finding answers to my questions. Well I have been searching for a couple days (at least) to try and figure out what is going on with my ADFs...well one ADF in particular.
I haven't had any luck and it may be that it is an issue that is hard to word in a Google search. I don't have much faith in the knowledge of the staff at my local pet store so I am writing you. I'm sure you are inundated with emails but I figured I'd see if you could help.
<Sure thing!>
I have a 5 gallon, heated and filtered tank and in it are 4 guppies, one mystery snail and now 2 ADF's. I had just one ADF for a few months and then decided she (I assume she is a she as I never hear singing like I have in the past with males) may like to have another ADF to interact with.
<Understood. But like most frogs, they're not really social as such...>
Prior to my adding the 2nd ADF (Ginger), my 1st ADF (MaryAnn) seemed like a happy active frog. She would always come when I tapped on the glass, would follow my finger and dance around for me, and would eat heartily Frozen Bloodworms and/or Brine Shrimp.
<Sounds neat!>
After adding Ginger to the tank, MaryAnn is a different frog. She hides out of sight most of the time, barely eats and seems to want to run from me versus being happy to see me. The new frog (Ginger) is acting normal. Is active and eats heartily.
<Odd.>
What happened to MaryAnn?? Could she be upset that I added another frog?
<Bullying is certainly a possibility, the solution for which, oddly enough, can be adding more -- it's harder for a bully to harass two frogs than just one. On the other hand, a useful trick is to remove the bully, rearrange the tank enough it looks different, then after an hour or so, return the bully. With a bit of luck, this has a "reset button" effect because the bully is now the newcomer again, and the original frog has a chance to assert itself better.>
Ironically, I hesitated at first to get a 2nd frog as I really enjoyed the "special" one on one time I had with MaryAnn. I only got the 2nd thinking it would make her happier to have a little friend.
<Always dangerous imagining animals are people. They're not. Their minds are very different, and animals that aren't gregarious, like frogs, really don't notice or interact with other frogs outside of breeding. Since you're offering the food, you are actually more "interesting" to them than other frogs!>
I don't know if it is my imagination but she does appear to be a tad bloated. That could be due to the fact that I fed her often....not sure.
<Possibly, so do try cutting back the food a bit, or using something with a laxative effect, like Daphnia or Brine Shrimp, to see if it helps.>
Either way, do you have any idea what could be wrong??
Let me know please when you have a chance.
Thanks in advance
Lisa
<Hope this helps, Neale.>

Re: Ghosty the Loach     10/11/17
Thanks Neale!
<Welcome.>
I will turn up the heater while treating then.
<Good-oh.>
I have never had any experience w/fungal infections so I honestly don’t know whether it would be better to only turn up the heat a bit to 77 as suggested & watch & wait, or also dose with Furan-2 since his fins did indeed respond quickly to that treatment.
<I'd up the temperature, and use the antibiotics again, especially if they worked once already. As stated earlier: there's no reason to assume a single course of antibiotic will do the trick with resistant strains of bacteria, any more than is the case with humans. A second or third course may be required.>
If he were yours, what would you do?
<See above.>
Thank you again!
Wendy
<Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Ghosty the Loach     10/11/17

Awesome! Will do. Temp to 76 now & will commence antibiotics. Thank you again!
Wendy
<Most welcome and good luck! Cheers, Neale.>

New Pandas also Re: Epsom salts, peacock gudgeons and blockages     10/11/17
Thanks Neale and Bob for your replies. And Hi Crew! Thought you would like an update on how my poor gudgeon is doing, and I have some extra troubles which I will get to later in this email.
<Oh dear.>
I kept watching the display tank after it was treated with Epsom salts and could see the prolapsed portion of the affected gudgeon had shrunk by half overnight and looked much better.
<Good.>
However after a full day many of the other peacock gudgeons were showing some stress colouration and hiding, so I performed the scheduled water change. By the following morning the gudgeons were back to normal, but
prolapse was back to its original size. I took the plunge and managed to catch the affected gudgeon by tricking him with food. If they get the idea they are in trouble they can dart and jump surprisingly quickly but I was
very lucky to catch him off guard. Anyway after 3 or 4 days in his own tank, and after treatment with what I hope is Metronidazole (bought off the internet due to not being readily available in Australia, the packaging is slightly unconvincing), the prolapse had reduced down again but did not yet resolve.
<The Metronidazole is a good thought here, as prolapses of this type are sometimes a reaction to parasites inside the gut.>
The gudgeon was becoming very stressed so I put him back into the display tank. It's been over a week and he is back to his normal self behaviourally. The prolapse has still not resolved but it is not as big as it was, or at least, it looks fleshier and a lot less likely to burst than it used to so I will keep my eye on him and continue to be mindful of what I feed that tank. No one died so I am counting that as a win for now!
<Indeed. Such things do take weeks to resolve. So like Dropsy, if the fish is getting incrementally better, and still eating, that's good!>
I'm writing now about an old familiar problem - trying to keep some new panda Corydoras alive. My existing school of 6 panda Corys is quite happy and doing well (thanks for your help in getting them to that point!) and I
had the idea that the tank they are in has room for a bigger school.
Originally I wanted to try some pygmy Corydoras in a separate species tank but I saw pandas had become available again for quite a cheap price. I ordered 15 expecting to lose a few but hoping to keep enough alive to
eventually expand the existing crew and I'm using the unused pygmy Cory tank for the quarantine tank. The store sent me 16 pandas (and also 2 sterbai Corys by mistake instead of trilineatus), but unfortunately put all
the pandas in the same bag. 4 died in transit, but the rest seemed mostly quite lively and feisty after getting into some fresh water. I lost 1 more from quarantine in the first few hours, one overnight, and then one more on
the following day. This last one had his barbels curled under him and his gill covers looked like they were stuck open. I suspect it was just residual damage from being in poor water conditions during shipping.
<Agreed, but the "cheap price" might also suggest less than perfect breeding conditions. Sometimes fish are maintained poorly, but "juiced" on antibiotics, which keeps them alive on the fish farm. Once shipped, the
drugs where off, and you're stuck with sickly fish. Careful quarantining, good food, and judicious medical treatment as needed can help though, so all is not lost!>
The remaining 8 pandas are still lively and have good appetites, and the 2 sterbai seem much the same although definitely more nervous due to their small school size. The zoomy pandas seem to terrify them even though the
sterbai are three times the size.
<Corydoras sterbai do need warmish water to stay healthy, 25-28 C, so they're not quite as adaptable to lower-end tropical conditions as other members of the genus. On the other hand, they're good choices for Angelfish, Discus and Gourami set-ups where high temperatures are needed.>
I am using the refund from the dead fish/wrong fish to buy a few more sterbai so eventually they will be in a comfortable school size - they definitely behave differently than the pandas and trilineatus that I already have so I am looking forward to setting them up in their own tank.
The current quarantine tank is 65lt with a fine sandy bottom and I have been doing daily 20lt water changes and vacuuming out uneaten food trying to give these guys as clean an environment as possible to recover. They
have been getting live grindal worms and some small pellet food and none of the survivors seem skinny like a few were when they first arrived. I am mixing up their water to be the same as the water my existing panda Corys
live in as that's where I want to move them to after quarantine is over, so medium softness and temp is 24C.
<Understood.>
Anyway now to the problems. After the quarantine population stabilized I noticed 2 of the pandas had thickened white patches on their fins, faces, and one had a coated barbel on one side which was twice as thick as it
should be. Very difficult to see what's going on with white on white but I thought it looked like fungus so began treatment with a Multicure product (malachite green, Methylene blue, Acriflavine, supposed to be good vs.
fungus and some external parasites).
<Sounds about right; Methylene Blue is a good first choice for fungus infections. Low toxicity, even with baby fish and eggs.>
After 2 days of this treatment there was no improvement and the patches were thicker so I began to worry that it was actually the dreaded Columnaris instead. I couldn't actually see any fibrous or fuzzy growths, the white patches seem more flattened and blobby than anything. All I had at hand was some tri-sulfa (which does say it can treat Columnaris on the label) and I remember reading somewhere that Columnaris will not tolerate salt.
<Possibly true, but can't imagine the salt level needed would be tolerated by Corydoras for long. I'd be using a plain vanilla antibacterial treatment here instead. Salt is almost never useful against fungus or bacterial infections at "safe" freshwater levels.>
I also checked to make sure I could mix tri-sulfa and the other product and as far as I could tell all would be well. I have had tri-sulfa and salt in the tank for 2 days now (this is the third day) and re-dosed as required, accounting for the water changes I did (additional to the existing course of Multicure). I added equivalent of 5 tsp of salt on the first day, and another 5 on the second day, dripped it in slowly via airline. The fish are all tolerating this well. I know Corydoras can handle more salt than this after having success treating Ich this way, but I don't know if that level of salt is required to treat Columnaris (or even if that's what I'm fighting here).
<I do suspect you are right: the 2 gram/litre level used for Whitespot is easily tolerated by freshwater fish, but for bacterial and fungal infections you'd surely need a lot more -- bear in mind marine fish can get both!>
I am holding off on adding more salt for now pending further advice.
<See above.>
I'm a bit worried that my water conditioner has reacted with the Multicure as it seems like a lot of it has come out of solution and settled on the sand (or perhaps just the top layer of sand is now dyed green).
<One risk with organic dyes like Malachite Green and Methylene Blue is precisely this. Tends to fade away in time, but not always. The blue is generally overlooked, looking watery I suppose, but the green is more annoying, it is true.>
The first dosage I put in stained the water quite dark for a couple of days but the second dose looks to be almost gone overnight, even though I followed the instructions and didn't use it immediately after the water change. Anyway there is still no improvement and the white patches are spreading to the other Corys. Yesterday one of the sterbai had a patch on his forehead although that is gone today, but a lighter patch of skin is visible in that place. I now realise tri-sulfa is bacteriostatic rather than bacteriocidal and probably won't get rid of Columnaris by itself, but I thought if I kept the Corys eating well they might be able to fight it off. The package for this medication says I can double the dosage for severe cases and I am considering doing this as I only used the single dose to start with.
<Follow the instructions, and remember to remove carbon from the filter, if used.>
Since I've had no success so far and it is spreading, today I had the idea that maybe this is slime coat disease (Costia?) and not a fungus or bacteria. The most notable thing is that it seems the extremities of the fish (fins, barbels) are affected much moreso than their bodies. Where it is on their faces, it's mostly around their nostrils, and it is on the fins that are closest to the substrate.
<This is not uncommon. It's usually explained in terms of a scratchy substrate, or a dirty substrate, or both. The belly and barbels are scratched, bacteria infect the wounds, and something similar to Finrot sets in. Indeed, it probably is the same Aeromonas and Pseudomonas bacteria at work. That said, there are mystery plagues or red-blotch diseases associated with Corydoras that don't have any definite aetiology. A broad spectrum antibiotic is helpful, but with the Corydoras moved to a substrate-free aquarium for the process, so that the skin has time to heal over properly as well.>
The one with a patch on his body seems like it spread there from his fin.
The Cory with one affected barbel now has both barbels coated. It seems like it covers the entire surface of some of their fins. I have not seen any redness anywhere on the Corys but maybe that symptom would not show up
on fins (or can't be seen under the thick coating).
I would have thought Costia would be affected by the ingredients in Multicure, if that's what this disease is, however if the Multicure is being cancelled by the water conditioner it would explain why the disease is spreading. If the disease is Columnaris it also explains why it is spreading quickly, although I would have hoped triple sulfa would have slowed it down. I do have some eSHa Exit available which I didn't use yet, as I am not keen on mixing up my medications. I had assumed it had similar ingredients to Multicure however I found a webpage stating it contains Acridine, Malachite Green, Meth.Violet, Meth. Blue so not quite the same.
So it might work differently I guess?
<Indeed.>
At this point I am wondering what your opinion is of this disease and how I should be treating it. I am fairly sure by now that this is not fungus as the water has been kept quite clean, I haven't seen any obvious hairy fuzz,
and it has not responded to that treatment. I hope it's not Columnaris, but if it is, it's taking its time on killing off all my fish and they aren't really acting unwell. I've had advice that Kanaplex will work on Columnaris but at this point I don't have access to any (although I could ask my vet when I take my cats in tomorrow) however, obviously antibiotics are pointless if this is Costia. But if it's Costia, why didn't the first treatment get rid of it (maybe because it's not as good as eSHa Exit)? I'm hoping you have some ideas or tips as to what to do next.
<Costia is frustrating because it can't be easily diagnosed without a microscope. While some fish are prone to it, others aren't, and to some degree it's "the thing you suspect next" if fungal and Finrot bacterial infections have been dismissed. It's all very annoying.>
I'll attach some pictures but its quite hard to see since everything is kind of green, I have a terrible camera, and the Corys are tiny and won't sit still. They are still very white, reflective and you can see some of their internal structures and iridescent bits showing through which looks like white patches on their bodies but isn't.
<Indeed, I can see what you're talking about clearly. I'd be assuming the substrate and bacteria are somehow the issue, and treating as described above. I'd also double check the tank is Corydoras-safe, e.g., you used smooth silver sand rather than sharp sand.>
When the extra sterbai Cory arrive they are going to have their own separate quarantine well away from this tank since it is a bit of a disaster area. I'm lucky to have a very understanding spouse who has let me set up many tanks around the house!
Thanks as always for your help, your experience and advice is invaluable.
Cheers,
Bronwen
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: New Pandas also Re: Epsom salts, peacock gudgeons and blockages     10/11/17
Thanks Neale for your quick reply.
<Welcome.>
Regarding the sand, it is an extremely fine river sand which I had left over from my other Corydoras tank which has been running for over a year now, no issues with the sand. It's very smooth and inert and I've put a thin layer for comfort more than anything. Fresh from the bag and rinsed before using here. Only one of the Corys has anything on his barbels but I can see the sense of sucking out the sand for now so that it doesn't provide a hiding place for the bacteria. I can do that during the next water change and it also gives me a chance to see if the green will rinse off.
<Indeed.>
No carbon in the filter at the moment but I have some fresh stuff at hand in case I needed to remove medication from the water.
<Understood, though rarely necessary; most organic medications will decompose rapidly in mature tanks.>
I do have a microscope but I understand Costia are small and hard to identify and my scope only goes to 100x - useful for larger parasites but not so much the tiny stuff. It might be worth a try, if I see anything at all zooming around it is indicative that something is going on at that scale as well as anything at a bacterial level. I'll report back if I find anything.
<Cool. Images of Costia aka Ichthyobodo can be found online.>
I'm going to the vet for my cats yearly check up tomorrow so I will ask if he can prescribe me anything to help. I don't think he is a fishy vet but he does have a huge tank with a turtle in it at his surgery so he might know something about aquarium medications. I found some tetracycline at the back of my supplies cabinet but I'm wary of using it on new fish weakened by shipping. Other medications I've heard could be useful are Kanamycin,
neomycin, Nitrofurazone but I guess I have to wait and see what the vet says.
<Indeed; the old Metronidazole and Nitrofurazone combo is a good one, if you can use it.>
Thanks again, at least I feel like I have a battle plan now.
Cheers,
Bronwen
<Good luck! Neale.>

Need help with dying Uaru     Neale's go     10/11/17
Hello crew.
This time I write to you today highly distressed.
I bought an Uaru cichlid, at about the 3 cm mark around 4 months ago. I placed it in my 150 gal planted tank with tetras and other peaceful community fish. The most in terms of aggressiveness are my two male Kribensis, but they hardly get past 6 cm long.
So the Uaru had been eating well. It is not the fastest competitor against the likes of dwarf rainbows or Columbian tetras, but I made sure he ate well. In the 4 months I kept him he's grown about one cm only. Now , I've read Uarus are slow growers but just 1 cm seems too little for 4, almost 5 months. my adult green terrors were raised from the 5 cm mark and they grew to 10-12 cm in a year.
Recently I started noticing small filaments attached to his fins... no damaged fins, just the filaments, I actually thought it was algae or something that was attached, because I actually saw other fish get strands of algae attached before without major issue. Now, the tank is high tech, and I use it to grow out cichlids when I buy them small and then move them to the main cichlid tanks when they are big enough.
A few days ago I did a major trim on the whole tank and got a green water bloom. I normally carry 50% water changes in this tank weekly. This time I started to do 50% water changes every 3 days, and at the 3rd water change I did a 75% one to eradicate the algae. Always use treated water and temps hardly differ more than a Celsius. Well today, the day after the big water change I found my Uaru on the bottom of the tank, gasping heavily, with ragged fins, but no noticeable fungus or bacterial marks (no white spotting, no redness, just ragged fins). He still reacts to my hand, but is very weak, can hardly swim and is gasping.
Besides the water changes, I also tweaked the co2 valve, and I may have gone a little overboard because I noticed my Columbian tetras hanging in a group without moving much (they normally scatter throughout the tank and they normally tell me when co2 is too high with the grouping behavior).
I don't know, it may have been the co2, it may have been the water changes... I don't really know, I tested for nitrogen and the three readings are zero (tank has sump filtration and is very heavily planted, I actually feed quite a bit more than normal to keep the plants happy).
Right now I figured it would not be good for the Uaru to stay at the bottom where decomposition takes place. I have placed him in 2 gallon contained with an airstone and aquarium water, and have medicated with Methylene blue at 50% dose. I'm not sure what else to do, he doesn't seem bloated, but at the state he's in I don't think he's going to make it. No fish that I've seen in that state have made it. But I have to do anything I can to save this guy.
Ill be waiting for your response, sorry for the very long post, I am very distressed, This guy was very hard to get and I've grown very attached to him.
Regards
Roberto
<Roberto, a bunch of things to consider here. The first is that Uaru species are delicate. Right up there with wild-caught Discus, and generally do badly in community tanks. Exposure to parasites and pathogens in "cheap" aquarium fish can be a serious risk, so best avoided. If you've heard the horror stories that come from mixing Discus with Angelfish you'll know what I'm talking about here. Certainly, quarantine any tankmates before adding to the Uaru aquarium. Thirdly, Uaru need a lot of heat -- 28-30 C. Anything below that will weaken their immune systems. Again, this is VERY similar to Discus. Fourthly, they probably need soft, acidic water to do well. Might be some latitude here with locally-bred specimens, but realistically, 1-5 degrees dH, pH 6-7 is what we're aiming for. Yet again, this is Discus-level fishkeeping. Finally, they're herbivores, and substantial amounts of fresh greens are essential. Cooked peas, spinach, cucumber and small bits of fruit, alongside Spirulina-based flake and wafers, are what you want. Avoid using too much protein-rich food, including traditional flake food. There's good evidence that even with Goldfish and Koi, let alone Uaru, offering meaty foods as anything more than occasional treats can cause health issues, from constipation through to serious vitamin deficiencies and fatty deposits around their internal organs. Short term, I'd be treating as per Hexamita infection, using a combination of Metronidazole and an antibiotic (or something like eSHa HEXAMITA if these aren't available) simply as a good general purpose approach to cichlid maladies. Long term, I'd be optimising environmental conditions, removing inappropriate tankmates -- these include not just species unable to handle the heat, but also species that need meaty foods. Review Discus maintenance, and keep Uaru in much the same way, albeit with the accent on plant-based foods. Juvenile Uaru are social it is true, but the adults form pairs, and like Discus, singletons can be maintained successfully in quiet, shady tanks without much noise or activity. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Need help with dying Uaru   RMF     10/11/17

Hello, thanks for the very informative response.
<Welcome>
The guy is now swimming upright and is more responsive to stimulus. I may actually believe CO2 overdosing was at play here also. I will be checking on his fins in a while when I arrive home.
<Agreed, and good>
some addressing of the points you told me:
this is the tank that receives the most maintenance, it stays at around 7.5 ph, 8 dGH and 8 dh (I know, not optimal). I just want to point out I actually have another Uaru, this one is 20 cm adult I got last year and have kept in a south American cichlid aquarium (230 gal), but I got him already at the 15 cm mark. The small and big Uarus do get greens, since I also keep a couple fancy Plecos feeding them zucchinis and other greens also involves the Uarus feeding. Also, the small Uaru nibbles on plants, particularly Hygrophila and staurogyne species which he devours happily. I also feed a combination of Spirulina and normal flakes with new life spectrum to all fish, although all in all they do get their share of meaty foods, which probably isn't good as you have pointed out.
Water temp of the planted tank stays at 25-26C, so yeah, below what is needed. All in all I reckon he's not in the best of conditions, even less for a 4 cm fish, which are more delicate than adult, robust fish.
Thank you, I will probably set up a different tank for him to grow out while he reaches the size to go to the main cichlid tank. I will also be upgrading the cichlid tank, the jump will be towards a 540 gal. The current main south American has the adult Uaru, 2 Geophagus steindachneri, 1 Green phantom Pleco, 1 blue phantom, and a school of 5 Festivums.
I have two adult Andinoacra rivulatus in separate tanks. I was wondering if they would be compatible with the rest of the fish in the eventual 540 gal?
<Will ask Neale to respond here. Bob Fenner>
Thank you
Sincerely
Roberto

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