View Full Version : HELP leopard wrasse disaster! (established fish gone sick!)

04/02/2009, 01:34 AM
Reader's Digest:

Idiot roommate turned heat off in house. Tank recovered but leopard wrasse is sick and emaciated from not hunting. Day 5 and still wont eat or hunt. What should i do? how can i help her? Should i just put her down? This will break my heart

-Only fish in tank
-Parameters perfect now
-Standard feeding not enticing fish to eat
-Fish bulletproof until Chill event
-Fish used to eat anything

I left town for all of last week and charged my girlfriend (quite knowledgeable) with watching my tank. She did an excellent job of feeding, and topping off. The only duties i told her to do.

My roommate left town several days after me, for the last two days of my trip.
-----------------He turned the heat in the house OFF.-----------
when he left it was 75 in boulder, it snowed heavily on Wednesday evening (last time girlfriend came over was wens. morning), and the temperature was hovering around freezing until my return. (48 hours later)

Promptly upon coming home and seeing all my corals retracted, i noted that i also didnt see my only fish: the leopard wrasse.

I touched my finger to the tank water, and instantly knew. The tank was freezing cold: 48' F to be exact. I immediately began extracting water into jugs, and heating them in the bathtub, and replacing the water.

Everything lived.

After spending 6 hours gently raising the temp to 60-65, i decided the heaters should do the rest, to minimize shock to the system. I've been diligently monitoring the tank since (day 5 now) and all parameters are perfect.

The leopard wrasse is alive, but heavily emaciated, and obviously sick from the cold event.

But the leopard wrasse wont eat. Period. It sleeps all day in the sand, pokes its head up when i feed the tank, but can barely make the effort to move. Even mysis (her usual) gently pipetted right by her face cannot get her to open her mouth to eat it. But the smell of food awakens her!!!

What should i do? Please i seek your advice. Be realistic with me, but approach from the perspective of this has been my only pet for over a year, not impulse buy, or eye candy. (had the wrasse for 14 months now)

Thank you so much for your attention and advice.

john rochon
04/02/2009, 05:13 AM
what, you don't have a heater in the tank?

04/02/2009, 05:17 AM
Other than trying some different foods maybe some garlic on the foods or some live copepods from an LFS there is not much more you can do.

04/02/2009, 06:19 AM
I can give much advice on prevention but none on fixing this particular problem. A heater with a ranco controller, talking to your roommate and/or changing roommates, discussion with your girlfriend, all could have prevented this problem.

04/02/2009, 07:02 AM
I'd turn off all flow when trying to feed her even if that means leaving the mysis on the sand near where she sleeps for 1/2 hour or so. Try garlic soaked mysis and maybe even selcon gut-loaded live brine. Their movements might provoke a feeding response. Good luck with her.

04/02/2009, 08:44 AM
good ideas all. I have two heaters, but they couldn't stand up to the super low temps experienced. Both heaters work i can feel them. TY for useful responses. Such a bummer. Will report on new foods.

Note: GF wasn't there once the temp went down, tank was alone, and yes roommate has been thoroughly chewed out

04/02/2009, 11:18 AM
If your heaters can't keep the water warm enough then you need bigger heaters.

Uncle Salty 05
04/02/2009, 11:55 AM
Live brine might be worth a try?