Possible New Cure for Ick?


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Four days ago I came home from work to find an outbreak of ick in my 125g. Three fish, all had a major case of ick... presumably from the newly introduced Cuban Hog. In the past when I've suffered an ick outbreak I've tried all the standard remedies to get rid of it. Selcon. Garlic. Kick-Ick. UV. FW dips. Hyposalinity. Etc. I've had little success with any of those.

This time, out of frustration, I tried something a bit unorthodox. I added Ã"šÃ‚¼ tsp. of ginger to my normal homemade fish food concoction (don't ask why, you'll think I'm crazy). I figured the worse thing that could happen is that the three fish die and I start over again (something I had already reserved myself to anyway). At any rate, something amazing happened. The next day I came home from work to find not a single white dot on any of the fish! One feeding, 24 hours, no ick!

Has anyone else tried/had success with this method?
You might have found something out, and might be one of the world's most thanked hobbyist.

But.... Ich does have a cycle and they drop from the fish and reproduce, later they should appear from them, keep us posted and if nothing pops up in like, 2 weeks, then you might have found something.
Are you positive that it was ich? Maybe it was just some bubbles or some sand on the fish....

Its hard to believe that one feeding would kill ich in 24 hours....especially since it takes 3 weeks for it cycle through.......
I am 100% sure it was "ick." I'm not sure if it was Cryptocaryon or Oodinium. You ain't talkin' to a newbie here; I've been in this hobby for over 28 years and I know the difference between sand, bubbles, and ick.

To be honest, I'm not sure if I "killed" it or not; I guess time and continued study will determine that. I'm fully aware of the cycle that the ick goes through. All I know is one feeding, no more white dots on any of the fish. I'm gonna keep supplementing the ginger for at least another couple of weeks and see what happens. Although I'm tempted to NOT feed them anymore ginger to see if the ick returns.

I'm just very excited that this appears to have worked and wanted to share the news and my joy with everyone! I will keep you posted.
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just to clarify... is this a FO tank fowlr or reef tank?

keep an eye on any snails or other critters in the tank as well

It is a reef tank with softies only (no LPS or SPS at the moment).

Day Two Update:

One more feeding with my ginger additive last night. Came home from work today and examined the fish. Neither the Blue Devil Damsel nor the Orange Diamond Goby have any signs of ick on them (although it's a little tough to tell for sure on the goby). The Cuban Hog has one tiny white dot on its head. No signs of distress with any of the crabs or corals. I'll do another feeding tonight with the ginger and report back tomorrow.
Can you give us some details on how you prepared the ginger? Was it fresh ginger root or a powder?

I've always viewed both ginger and garlic as a good cure for human problems, so it makes sense to me that they might be beneficial to our wet pets. Not *everything* needs to come from a test tube at Merck to be good for you.
Wow, if that works you could call it the "cratylus method" and be instantly promoted to reef god. :thumbsup:

Just out of curiosity, do yo have cleaner animal (shrimp, fish, etc) in your tank? did you add anything besides the ginger to the tank recently?


I have no "cleaner animals" in the tank and have added nothing by way of chemicals, water changes, etc. to the tank within the last 3 weeks. I know introducing the Cuban Hog about a week ago is what started the ich problem.

As far as preparation goes, I have a Jamaican ginger root I got from the produce section of the local supermarket. Of course, I cleaned it very well before preparing it. All I do is grate it with a very fine-bladed cheese grater. I get about Ã"šÃ‚¼ tsp. of ginger powder and mix it up with my own fish food concoction (mixture of raw oyster, raw shrimp, three kinds of algae, krill, and marine flake that has been somewhat liquefied in a blender). I take the Ã"šÃ‚¼ teaspoon of ginger and add it to 1 tablespoon of my fish food mixture and mix it up thoroughly. Then I just dump it in the tank like a normal feeding.

By the way, Bruddah Chrispy, that's what initially got me thinking about the ginger as a potential remedy. It was one of those "Aha!" moments of inspiration that hit you out of the blue. I have read all about the medicinal benefits for people and I thought it would be worth a try on my fish. Ginger is extremely high in vitamins B3 and B5, both responsible for cellular and tissue regeneration. In addition, clinical tests on the various compounds in ginger have shown them to have antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial, and antimicrobial results. The oil in ginger has also been shown to prevent skin cancer and cure skin infections in lab rats.
Great timing for this thread! Came home today and a Rusty Angel has a white spot on his side and a matching one on the fin that touches that spot. I've had the fish 3 months. In a reef tank. Can't go the traditional route with copper based meds. Off to the store for some garlic and ginger. BTW, this is my first problem of this sort, does one prepare garlic the same as you described the ginger?:confused:
Sorry to be so Ignorant...

Sorry to be so Ignorant...

But what exactly is Ich? I know it is a fish desease but how do inhabitants get it? Please PM and let me know or just reply to this post.
Day Three Update.

Another feeding with the ginger supplement last night. Inspected the fish tonight after work. No white dots on any of the fish. Corals, crabs, and snails all seem fine.

Keeping my fingers crossed. It's early, but it appears to be working! :thumbsup:

Another dose of ginger about to be given with tonight's feeding. I'll have another update tomorrow.
I too will be interested in the outcome of this "time study", and that is exactly what it will take to see any positive results. Personally, I would not be too optimistic. The life cycle of crypto is such that when the inactive tomonts fall off the fish, it can take 6-10 days before hundreds of new free swimming tomites emerge in search of a host. A couple days with no visible symptoms is not a measure of success. Often the parasite re-emerges with a vengeance. You stated you tried all of the "standard remedies" and list selcon, FW dips and UV as a few of those. Truth is, none of these are effective in treating cryptocaryon. Selcon is a food supplement and nothing more. FW dips can help with the parasites present on the fish, but do nothing at all to eliminate those in the tank, so when the fish is placed back in the display, he's essentially reinfected immediately. UV is pretty much useless on a single system, and seems to work better on multi system set-ups. When you mentioned you had no luck with these, It was not surprising. When you say you had no luck with hyposalinity, there are many variables that determine the success of the treatment. Hypo has been proven to be the safest and most effective treatment for crypto when done properly, over the prescribed time frame and using accurate measuring devices (read refractometer or lab grade glass hydrometer.)
I wouldn't get your hopes up, but it will be interesting to see what shakes out.
i'm not sure how "scientifically sound" the concept is, but I sure do want to hear how your experience turns out! You may be on to something here... keep us posted!