Black Ick

outta names

New member
Does anyone have experience with black ick? I have done several searches and read that once all the fish have been removed from the tank I should let the tank stay w/o fish for two weeks. I got all of my fish out last night and put them in a separate tank but was wondering about crabs and shrimp. Are these not at risk of carrying the illness? I would hate to keep all my fish in a QT for 2 weeks only to find that the ick still had some host that it could survive on. Any feedback would be great.
When any type of Ich is present in a tank, it should be fallow or fishles for 6 to 8 weeks not 2. The ich goes through a life cycle, and two weeks wont kill it off.
The crabs and shrimp will be fine in the tank.
well I am sure my experience was different than others.......I had black ich starting on my Yellow tang and clowns. I left the fish in my tank and di one large water change and followed it up by doing smaller water changes every other day. I soaked food in garlic and after two weeks the spots on the fish were gone. I have not had any problems since and that was 8 months ago.
fiidog That might be so, but the parasite still lives in the tank, just that the fish are able to fend it off for now, but if something should stress them out, heater failure, poor water etc it will over take the fish again. If you have the fish out of the main display, let it stay fallow for 6 weeks, that way you will be sure the ich cycle has been broken. Maintain strict quarentine procedures afterwarsd.
Black ick is caused by paravortex worms, a completely different parasite than cryptocarion irritans (normal marine ick). A freshwater dip of the affected fish will cause the worms to bail out immediately. I recently acquired a yellow tang which soon displayed signs of black ick. One dip in temp/pH matched RO/DI water, and she looked perfect the next day. A follow up dip a few days later is often recommended, but I didn't do one (tang is in a QT that's siphoned daily, so YMMV). No recurrence and it's been almost 2 weeks.

I don't have any information about the life cycle, or how long the display would need to be fallow to allow it to die out.
Thanks for the responses everyone. Shark bait- that is similar to what I have read but didn't think it was 6 weeks. From what I understand the paravortex worms fall off into the sandbed and bust open letting hundreds of new worms into the system and they can only survive X amount of weeks without a fish host. I was dumb not to quarentine my fish from the get-go but live and learn, right.

Jeffbrig- I did the freshwater dip on the first fish I noticed the spots on but began to notice spots on all of my fish about a week later so I set up a QT tank in hopes of getting rid of the worms all together.
Check the fish disease forum. Black ich pops up every couple of pages.

Formalin dips or baths seem to be the most recommended treatment. Freshwater dips may also work, but they're not as good as formalin.

I just finished my first formalin dip of my yellow tang. No little black dots when I put him back into the QT.

I think the parasite stays on the fish for 3-6 days, then drops onto the substrate where it explodes into dozens of new babies in another 3-6 days. You can check these numbers in the disease forum. TerryB seems to be an authority on it. I've seen his article in a couple places on the web.
Thanks hal, I tried to click on the links provided in the fish disease forum but I could not access this b/c I am not a paying member.