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My first sick fish.....

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johnsmb

Active member
Joined
Jul 12, 2003
Messages
43
Location
Southwestern WA
After a successful first year, I am looking at my first crisis. I have had my female clown fish for one year and she has always been the boss of the tank. For the past 6 months, she has had black splotches on her body - but I have read this is normal. However, a week or two ago, she began to lose the black coloration on her fins - the fins look ragged because the black is missing in streaks - but I think the fins are still intact. I don't see any white spots, however, her body is "rough" looking. That's the best way I can describe it - maybe slightly greyish - but definitely looks rough, not smooth. But, the main thing is that the tables have turned and the male clownfish chases her around all day. She is not as active and still eating, but not with gusto, and appears to have lost weight.

Tank is a 75 gallon with 4 fish - nitrite and nitrate are 0, ph is 8.0, alk is 2.6 meq/L or 7.4 dkH, and calcium is 375.

They have been under some stress - I just upgraded to the 75 gallon about 5 weeks ago, then I have had some heat issues and I was just out of town for a week and a half - so they only got fed and topped off every other day.

I am working on setting up a hospital tank - but I have no idea what she has or what medication to use. Mainly I have to get her out or the male will chase her to death.

I don't have any aged filter media to use, so I will have to sacrifice some small liverock pieces for filtration. Will 2 or 3 pounds be enough filtration for one fish in a 10 gallon tank??? I have an aquaclear filter with a sponge I can put on there, too, but the sponge is dry - so it will have no bacteria on it.

What medicine to use? And, if I end up treating, does that mean I can never again use the powerhead, filter, heater, etc in the main tank??? I know that the liverock can absorb medications, but what about the actual equipment? Thanks for any help, Beth.
 

Terry B

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 6, 2004
Messages
162
Hi Beth,

It sounds like you may have some complicated issues to deal with. There are many more questions that I need answered before I can attempt to help you. I think this is a good case for a full consultation. Please take a look at this link and let me know what you think. With a full consultation things will become apparent that you may not be aware of and you should gain knowledge that will help you with much more than just the clownfish.
http://www.marineaquariumadvice.com/consultation.html

If you do not decide on a consultation then I will do what I can to help here.

Cheers,
Terry Bartelme
 

johnsmb

Active member
Joined
Jul 12, 2003
Messages
43
Location
Southwestern WA
The consultation sounds interesting......however, I do not have the money for it right now...especially on top of the money needed for the QT tank set-up and medications, if any.

I will be moving her over to a seperate tank this evening....does anyone have any ideas on where to go from there? I don't know if I should treat for bacterial, viral or parasite???
 

Terry B

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 6, 2004
Messages
162
Hi Beth,

Has the clownfish’s body looked “rough” for a while now or has this happened suddenly? Weight loss, reduced appetite and color change could be an indication of something serious such as tuberculosis. What is the ammonia reading and temperature? Thermal stress can cause some serious problems. When was the last fish added to the aquarium? Do you always quarantine before adding fish to your display tank? What do you feed the fish? Do you use vitamins and Selcon? When did you make the last water change?

You can use some live rock as a biological filter if you feed very lightly and you are careful what medication that you use. You will be able to use your equipment in another tank.

For now, In would reduce the salinity (not SG) to about 14ppt. Be sure to test the pH daily during treatment. The low salinity will help with several types of parasites. You might want to get some Furanase in case you need to use an antibiotic. Is the fish breathing normally or is it rapid or labored? You should soak the foods with garlic. I use Kyolic brand liquid garlic extract. Garlic can help with internal parasites. I just hope the problem is not tuberculosis or viral. Try to find some Beta glucan at a good health food store or online. Add a tiny amount to the food each day to enhance immune function.
Read this link about using Beta glucan:
http://www.marineaquariumadvice.com/beta_glucan_biological_defense_modulator.html

HTH,
Terry Bartelme
 

Angelscrx

Import Fish
Joined
Jul 30, 2004
Messages
1,103
Location
Ettrick, VA
Wow Terry, that is some great advice. I do the garlic in the food and I add vitamin C to the water when any signs of illness pop up (haven't had a sick fish since my last ick breakout). But the check list that you provided should be used by anyone not sure about their set up. Awesome tool and the $30.00 for the consultation is not a bad deal. I know times get tough but it should definitely be open to a later date.
 
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