Please help, parasite problems

macjax

New member
Hello and thanks for your help in advance !!! I setup a 55 gallon marine tank back in December of 2005. I used R/O water and set my salinity to 1.021 just because I wanted a fish only tank with snails, shrimp and crabs etc...I then bought 50 lbs. of live rock and live sand. After setting up the tank with salt, live rock and live sand, I bought 10 damsels to help cycle my tank. They all (except one) died anywhere from 2 ~ 40 days after I dropped them in. I continued to wait untill about 2 months before I added 20 blue leg crabs and 20 snails. Ok, all is well, snails, and crabs alive and well after two weeks and my water tested all good. Now, its about 2 1/2 months after the setup, I deceided to buy a few cheap fish just in case and 2 shrimp. I bought a small Powder Blue Tang, 2 clown fish and a carmel shrimp and cleaner shrimp. After 1 day I noticed the power blue started getting very small white dots but he was still eating and swimming about. On the third day he was a little worse but on the 4th day he got better so I though all was well !! Then, a few days later, he got worse so I bought some Kick-Ich which didn't do a damn thing so I went for the fresh water bath. After a 4 minute dip, he looked the same with no loss of parisites from what I can tell. Placed him back in the tank and he was dead the next day. Then, both clown fish started getting white dots and then died a day or two later. I went into my local pet store and asked for help. One guy said that parasites will die after 7 days in your tank without a host fish. Hearing this was great beacause the only fish I had left was the damsel which never got a spot on him. I waited 1 month until I bought fish again thinking that the parasites all must me dead because I don't have any fish in my tank except that one Damsel which never got a spot on him. I then bought a Bat fish. The very next day, bam ! Same thing !!! White dots starting to show up on him. I took him out and place him in a QT tank with copper added. He started getting bad after 24 hours so me thinking he was stressing out, I put him back into the main tank and he died the next day. Now I am ****ed because I waited one month and didn't have any fish with parasites except the damsel which is vary hardy and healthy. I did some research on the web and read that a U/V ligh will kill the parasites so the very next day, I went out a bought a 9 watt Turbo Twist U/V sterilizer and let it run for 3 seeks without buying any fish. The other day I fiqured I try it again and bough a cheap Coral Beauty. 2 days later, he has tiny white spots. I don't know what to do at this point. Please help!!! Thanks so much !!!


Mike
 

White Tiger

New member
Every time you have an outbreak of ick, you should assume that all fish has it, regardless of no signs of disease on other fish. This is because ick can infect a fish without the fish showing signs of it. Infact, when you do have an ick outbreak, most of the time, fish without white spots have ick.

You have two options
1st: Buy a quarintine tank to place all of your live rock and invertabrates in. Then, use copper-based medication in the main tank for a month.

2nd: Buy cleaner shrimps and Ick*Attack. Ick*Attack is a reef-safe medication that will get rid of ick. Your cleaner shrimps will help eliminate some of the paracites on the infected fish as well.
=============Please note================
Ick*Attack is not always effective.
 

macjax

New member
White Tiger, thanks so much. I have a 20 gallon tank setup for QT. I also have copper and a copper test kit but im not sure how much copper to add since the articles on the internet state different dossage then the info on the copper bottle.

Thanks, again . . .
Mike
 

Fat Surgeon

In Memoriam
Mike,
Sounds like you did everything right from the beginning by adding things slowly into the tank. However, I have a feeling your LFS you bought your fish from introduced the parasite into your tank and now may be extremely difficult to get rid of without breaking the tank down. While doing a copper based med now may solve the problem, think long term. IMO, DO NOT dose a copper based med into your tank. Any Inverts and some fish you may decide to put into the tank later on wont stand a fighting chance. And if you decide to do corals...well...forget about them if you do copper. Start off by removing everythiing from the tank. Sterilize the tank(NO cleaning solutions) and let it sit for a couple weeks completely empty. Boil your Live rock and dry out your sand, or buy new sand. After doing this, place the LR and Sand in a rubbermaid with your skimmer and a powerhead while your tank is empty. Your basically going to restart your system and add a few more pounds of live rock from a different LFS or someone you know that you can trust togive you goodstuff. Asfor the LFS you went to before, try another place. I believe you just started off rough, but dont give up. Perhaps some other people can provide some more insight. Best of luck and I'm sorry to hear you have had such a difficult start.
 

rkelman

New member
I'm not an expert but If its ich everything I've read says leave the tank running for 40 days with no fish it and the parisite will dissapear as it cannot complete its life cycle/multiply without fish. I don't see the need to sterilize the tank.. I would leave the tank empty and buy a couple of fish and put them in the qt tank with copper to clear any problems before adding them to your main tank in 40 days. Then at least you know the fish are ich free when you put them in. If you wait the 40 days then put a fish from the lfs with ich in the tank you will have to start over yet again. Good luck don't give up! QT everything before putting it in your tank.
 

macjax

New member
Hey guys and thanks for all the help !! Well, I decided to let the Coral Beauty wait it out. Now, after about a week, he is doing great !!! His parisites are almost all gone !! Why, I'm not really sure but maybe the cleaner shrimp was hungry ?


Thanks,
Mike
 

Freed

It's what it's
Oh...my...gosh. DO NOT TEAR YOUR TANK DOWN. That is absolutely not necessary to rid the tank of ich. DO NOT cook your live rock and dry out your sand. DO NOT sterilize your tank. You have a QT tank so use it for the fish in the main tank. Take them out and put them in it. PERFORM HYPOSALINITY ON THE QT TANK. This means to drop the salinity in the QT tank to 1.009 for at least 4-6 weeks. This will kill the ich on the fish and any ich that will be in the QT tank. Meanwhile, the ich in the main tank will die with no fish to feed off of BUT you must leave the main tank fishless for AT LEAST 4-6 weeks and even longer if you want to be absolutely sure there is no ich remaining. You can even leave the fish in HYPO for the same period. Make sure you use a refractometer to measure the salinity in the QT. A swing are hydrometer may not be calibrated and could potentially cause the death of the fish in QT if it is off by a few hundredths. The only thing you need in the QT tank is a few pieces of PVC for the fish to hide in, a heater, air driven sponge filter and maybe a very small powerhead for circulation. USE QT ON ANYTHING WET IN THE FUTURE YOU INTEND TO PUT IN YOUR MAIN DISPLAY. You could possibly bring home ich that is hanging out in the water that your new arrival is in with a coral or an invert or even some live rock. Practice the above info I have given you TO THE T and you will never have ich in your main tank again. GUARANTEED.
 

Gerad

New member
wow as i was reding i was blown buy the idea of this pore guy starting his tank over. pleas don't.... I agre that the ansew will suck but it will only take 6 weeks to kill. like the post before QT all of the fish in the tank and take the salinity down. you have a qt tank so use it. it will all be over realy fast. and it sucks that you got this from your LFS but they all have it. they house to many fish to say they don't. unless they only cary manderans.lol
 

Fat Surgeon

In Memoriam
Boy, some people cant play nice can they??

#1- Yes, Ich does die at temps above 84 with an ich solution added

#2- While tearing down a tank is a last resort solution, he didnt have corals and ALL of his fish were dying over an extended period of time. That's the only reason I suggested he may do that. Please re-read his first thread

#3- NEVER guarantee a certain solution will work. Freed, you have never owned a Surgeon Fish I take it?? If you did, you would know that they can suddenly develop Ich because of immune deficiency. Like I said, never guarantee anything in this business

#4- If you notice, his fish got better before you even posted without using your option or mine. Just goes to show you, everyone's tanks are a little different.

Have a great day!:cool:
 

Freed

It's what it's
#1- most other inhabitants will die at temps above 84 as well.
#2- you never even suggested QT. You only suggested copper for the main tank but I agree it is a death warrant to any other corals or inverts that would be added later. Then you suggest "sterilizing" the tank. No QT even mentioned. AND you never even mentioned the above as a last resort, which is UNNECESSARY if you leave the tank fishless for 4-6 weeks at least.
#3- going to another LFS won't mean you will not get ich from them. Any LFS can have ich in their tanks whether they are coral tanks, invert tanks, fish tanks, etc. Anything can carry the ich parasite if it has water on it.
Uh, I do have a hippo tang which is a surgeon fish. I QTd it when I got it many moons ago. It had ich in QT which Hypo took care of. Has never had ich since nor have any other fish I have in my main display because of QT regimens.

Ich does not spontaneously appear in a tank from "STRESS". The ich parasite has to be introduced into the tank on something that is wet. It doesn't just appear out of nowhere. Please do more reading on this Fat Surgeon.

I WILL GUARANTEE that if you follow the 4-6 week MINIMUM QT for anything new that is wet, and you follow it to the T, you will never introduce ich into the main display again.

His CB was getting better, not completely free of the ich parasite, which falls off in its life cycle and then reattaches later. Could quite possible be covered in ich again in the next week or two.
 

Fat Surgeon

In Memoriam
#1- Most fish will die from depleted oxygen levels at around 90 degrees. Certainely not at 84, unless maybe (A BIG maybe) you have zippo flow in your tank for oxygen levels.

#2- I didnt suggest QT, because Whitetiger suggested it already. No need to be repetitive as I think he is smart enough now to know that. BTW, QT'ing his other inhabitants would have done little good because whatever is killing his fish is in his main tank already. Gotta get rid of the source my friend, and sometimes breaking down a tank is a darn good way of doing it. Does it suck to do that? Yes, of course. Is it always necessary? No, of course not! BTW, allowing 4-6 weeks for a parasite to die off in a surviving tank is questionable. Just as you said, sometimes the outbreak can come right back. They find ways to live.

#3- Going to a different LFS can make all the difference. Why go somewhere that keeps supplying you with livestock that continues to die?? Sure, they may have had a bad batch, but why take the chance. My suggestion....Find out what they do for the new arrivals before buying anything from them.

And BTW, arent Hippo tangs awesome? Because you qt'd him when he came home is very commendable and thank goodness
his Ich has died off and not come back. I love my Surgeons!

As far as STRESS is concerned, I never said stress causes the Ich parasite. I said an Immune deficiency can cause the effect. Ich does not necessarily come on something wet. It comes on something alive(which is usually wet). Must be specific in this hobby. And yes, I have done plenty of reading on Surgeons and while I dont consider myself an expert on any phase of the hobby, I do know what I am talking about. Twenty six books, countless magazines and years of experience later makes one pretty proficient in what they are talking about. BTW, I have NEVER QT'd anything and have never lost anything in all the years I've been keeping Fish and Corals. Some might say I'm playing with fire, however, I know what I am looking for and careful as to what I buy before I make a purchase. Guess all that reading and the right LFS comes in handy for something.

Qt'ing never guarantees anything. What it does is it limits the possibilites dramatically that you will transfer something into your main tank. Guaranteeing that a 4-6 week QT will forever kill everything is like saying if I keep my kids indoors for 6 weeks that they wont get sick again in their lifetime.
 

Freed

It's what it's
Oh my gosh again. There are alot of people that know what they are talking about that will read this and wish that you would not put your $0.02 in.
 

Freed

It's what it's
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=7533771#post7533771 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by Fat Surgeon
However, I have a feeling your LFS you bought your fish from introduced the parasite into your tank and now may be extremely difficult to get rid of without breaking the tank down.

And how in the world did his LFS introduce the ich parasite into his tank? He himself introduced the ich into his tank by not QTing in the first place.
 

Freed

It's what it's
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=7583833#post7583833 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by Fat Surgeon
[B BTW, QT'ing his other inhabitants would have done little good because whatever is killing his fish is in his main tank already. Gotta get rid of the source my friend, and sometimes breaking down a tank is a darn good way of doing it.

BTW, allowing 4-6 weeks for a parasite to die off in a surviving tank is questionable.


#3- Going to a different LFS can make all the difference.

Any fish in any LFS can have ich. That is why it is so important to QT and and all new arrivals



As far as STRESS is concerned, I never said stress causes the Ich parasite. I said an Immune deficiency can cause the effect. Ich does not necessarily come on something wet. It comes on something alive(which is usually wet). Must be specific in this hobby. And yes, I have done plenty of reading on Surgeons and while I dont consider myself an expert on any phase of the hobby, I do know what I am talking about. Twenty six books, countless magazines and years of experience later makes one pretty proficient in what they are talking about. BTW, I have NEVER QT'd anything and have never lost anything in all the years I've been keeping Fish and Corals. Some might say I'm playing with fire, however, I know what I am looking for and careful as to what I buy before I make a purchase. Guess all that reading and the right LFS comes in handy for something.

Don't know what you are reading but you are definitely not relaying the important parts about QTing.

Guaranteeing that a 4-6 week QT will forever kill everything .

We are talking ich here and yes it will kill it in 4-6 minimum QT.

[/B]
 

Fat Surgeon

In Memoriam
And how in the world did his LFS introduce the ich parasite into his tank? He himself introduced the ich into his tank by not QTing in the first place.
Are you for real??? Another one who thinks he knows everything. I'm pretty much done with this thread.....

.......Unbelievable :rolleye1:

Good luck with your future fish Macjax! :cool:
 

Freed

It's what it's
Now that we have that guy out of the way. Please do a search here on RC about ich and quarantine. You will find numerous threads about QT and how to kill ich and prevent it from being introduced into your tank. Ich has a finite life cycle and can be easily broken by QT with hyposalinity and by leaving your tank fishless for a specified period. Sorry you had to go though the other guy thinking he was helping you when he was only making it possible for you to be become uneducated on the ich parasite. I hope you choose wisely and do what I am prescribing. Let me know if I can be of more assistance. Thanks.
 
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