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Thread: A Quarantine Process

  1. #16
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    Lee,
    Outstanding post on QT.
    How come it's OK to use display tank water initially for QT, but any QT water changes need to new water?

    Joe

  2. #17
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    Lee, correct me if I am wrong.

    But you want the good biology and pH from the main display tank to initially start your QT, but you do not want the dirty water from WC to enter the QT; hence need to use clean water for subsequent WC.

    If you are using a sponge filter, drop it in your sump for 1-2 weeks before you plan on starting your QT tank; this way you will have instant biology in the tank.

    Kirk
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  3. #18
    Brittle Starfish

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    Good question!

    That is part of it Kirk. Starting off with the display tank/marine system water is the starting off the QT with the parameters (water chemistries and more importantly the operating conditions of pH and specific gravity) of the system the fish are going into (eventually).

    The biological/quarantine reason is that any initial organisms (e.g.,disease, parasites, etc.) from the established marine system is not going to be something you can't initially handle in the QT. Once the QT is running, now you don’t want any potential introduction of disease or problems that may already exist in the main system. So, as you watch the fish OR if you treat the fish, you don’t risk adding parasites or disease to the QT that may be in the main system (or someone else's system).

    Thus all subsequent water changes will be with water that is known to be ‘uninfected’ and still match the marine system parameters.
    LEE

  4. #19
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    I don't get it. If water from the display is used to set up a QT, anything in the display water is in the QT from the gitgo. I don't understand - if it's good enough to start a QT with, why it's not good enough for water changes.

    I like the idea of using silica sand if needed because it's cheaper than aragonite, but what's the problem with calcium carbonate sand in a QT?

    Again, outstanding post on QT. I've picked up some excellent information, thanks.

  5. #20
    Brittle Starfish

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    Starting with potentially contaminated water is not an issue because the fish is just starting in the QT process. But if you keep bringing contaminated water into the QT, then the fish will never get over/beyond that contamination.

    The concept that it is okay to begin with marine system water is that it is okay for the fish to be infected with anything currently in the marine system. The concept of not using it to replace QT water is to avoid continuously introducing those contaminants.

    In the above ‘contamination’ means water that may be carrying parasites or disease.

    Keep in mind that it is okay to use marine system water at the start – it isn’t necessary nor recommended. It is just easier for the aquarist to start with some ‘waste water’ that would have been discarded during a water change.

    In an absolutely ideal situation, the marine system is not contaminated at all, and the starting water isn’t an issue. But good and best practice is not to use even ‘guaranteed’ used water from a system for the QT water changes.

    I hope the above helps make it clearer.

    Calcium carbonate products in the aquarium interfere with some medications. Most notably, a copper medication. Carbonates form compounds and ‘draw’ meds out of the water. In a QT you want nothing in there to interfere with a treatment. You have to prepare for the contingency that a treatment will be necessary. For this same reason, LR and carbonate decorations (e.g. dead coral skeletons) are not put into the QT.
    LEE

  6. #21
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    I didn't know that Methylene Blue was an anesthetic, that's interesting. Does it also help kill gill flukes & other nasties? Would it be useful to include copper in the freshwater bath to get a higher pecentage kill rate of kill gill flukes & other nasties?

  7. #22
    Brittle Starfish

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    MB is a favorite old treatment of many freshwater fish pathogens. Not as effective in marine fishes, but it does and can kill a few pathogens. Not enough to totally use it for that purpose, but it is a side benefit.

    Its calming effect is really the MB's ability to carry more oxygen in the water. A fish with extra oxygen (like humans) labors less and 'relaxes' more.

    Copper has different effects at different salinities. Under no circumstances is copper added to a hyposaline solutions, nor is it added to FW for marine fish dips/baths. It's toxicity goes up in such situations and what is proper dosage at normal salinity is lethal at lower salinity. Much of its effect on the pathogen is also related to the make up of the water (alk., ca, mg, pH, etc.) as well as its toxicity to the fish.

    Copper remains with the fish for quite some time even after treatment. That is one reason why its use is banned by the US for use on food fishes.

    LEE

  8. #23
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    Thank You Very Much.

    Joe

  9. #24
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    I have never had a QT tank before, and unfortunatly I have recently had outbreaks of ick in my display tanks, so am now going to set up QT tank. However I have some questions that I hope are not too dumb.

    First, you stated that you should not place more than 1 fish in QT tank at same time. Would that remain true if you bought more than one fish from the same tank? Wouldn't those fish be exposed to the same diseases? What about if they were in the same system?

    I enjoyed the article and never thought about the other benefits of QT other then disease prevention (ie getting fish to eat etc) But the question I do have is, once the QT period is over, and it is time to place the fish in the display tank, what keeps the fish from becoming overly stress during that process and developing ick at that time (because doesnt all fish have ick just like we all have staph) I am probably way off, but was just wondering.

    Thank you.

  10. #25
    Brittle Starfish

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    The fish in quarantine does a lot more than just prevent and cure diseases. You noted that whole list.

    You don't put fish together in a quarantine tank for many of those other reasons. I'll restate some of them: food competition, friction/tank mate arguments, intimidation/domination, and differences in disease.

    Let me expand on that last point. The fish may come from the same system and even the same tank at the place you will acquire it, but not all fish will have the same affliction. Think of the hundreds of marine fish ailments and parasites. One fish can be infected internally, and the other not. One fish can have a skin parasite, the others don't even when in the same tank. The list goes on.

    I do except the case where the fish is part of a school of the same species. I do quarantine a school together.
    LEE

  11. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by mss View Post
    I enjoyed the article and never thought about the other benefits of QT other then disease prevention (ie getting fish to eat etc) But the question I do have is, once the QT period is over, and it is time to place the fish in the display tank, what keeps the fish from becoming overly stress during that process and developing ick at that time (because doesnt all fish have ick just like we all have staph) I am probably way off, but was just wondering.

    Thank you.
    Fish don't have Ich all the time, its something that may show up though it is possibly in the tank when they fish gets stressed out. A little further explaination, say you don't QT anything in the beginning and your tank doesn't have any signs of ich, but still contains the parasite due to not QT'ing. The fish's immune system may be able to fend it off on its own and you would never know its there. That is, until the day that the fish becomes stressed out due to water quality issues, moving tanks, new additions, etc. When that stress comes into play, the immune system takes a dive and the fish will succumb to the ich and you will start to see it. The statement that "fish always have ich" has been disproved time and time again.

    Check out Lee's articles about ich and QT'ing, hyposalinity, copper, etc.

  12. #27
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    thanks a lot. Makes sense...definately setting at least one up. Already have all the stuff.

  13. #28
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    Lee, Just to clarify, you do recommed quarantining the first fish in your display right? I would assume you do but I wanted to make sure.

  14. #29
    Brittle Starfish

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    Yes. If you follow this guideline: Starting up a Marine Aquarium, you'll find a step in there where it recommends that you begin the quarantine of your first fish.
    LEE

  15. #30
    Copepod

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    I thought I had read it somewhere. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction.

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