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SamS
01/24/2017, 10:18 AM
I have tried to have a pipefish tank for about 3 yrs now. My pipefish always do really well in quarantine, look very healthy, eat amazingly well and are thriving.

But, no matter how slowly I adjust the quarantine water to the same levels as my DT and no matter how long I acclimate them for, anywhere from a day to a week after moving them, they die. :mad2:

The only differences between the two tanks is that the quarantine is half the size of my DT (20 tall vs 40 long) and my DT has small long clawed hermits in it. Could the hermits be negatively effecting the pipefish? (they do great with my seahorses and really help with cleanup so i'd hate to lose them in the pipefish tank)

Any other ideas as to what could be happening? this last time, I had my pipefish in their QT for over 4 months before moving them, still with the same results.

BlueCat1949
01/24/2017, 07:30 PM
Leave them in the quarantine tank is the simple answer. Sometimes the extra care you give your fish when they are in quarantine makes all the difference. They can be mixed with other types of fish but most of the species that I have kept did best in a species only tank and a little extra maintenance. Of course my main goal was breeding which should be done without tank mates.

What other fish are in your DT?

SamS
01/26/2017, 04:02 PM
No other fish, just a small cleanup crew of tiny long clawed hermit crabs and a few mud snails.

I have a similar setup for my seahorses who are thriving so its just frustrating. I could always keep them in QT, but it seems so small for them and is obviously really bare

Naraku
01/26/2017, 08:52 PM
maybe the hermit crabs are killing them at night?
Just a thought.

ThRoewer
02/06/2017, 10:56 PM
What species of pipefish are you talking about?
I never had trouble with Bluestripe Pipefish once they were acclimated.
Also no big issues with Janssi. And I have those in reef tanks with larger fish and carpet anemones. Also never had issues moving those.

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SamS
02/07/2017, 02:37 PM
I have northern pipefish. I like to have local species tanks and pipefish are relatively easy to get seining out in the back bays of Delaware Bay

vlangel
02/07/2017, 06:32 PM
Or perhaps your pipefish being local do not have immunity to pathogens brought into your tank by wild caught fish that are not local. Many lfs carry fish from all over the world and since pipefish are similar to their relatives, the seahorse they can succumb to bacterial pathogens that don't effect other marine fish.

ThRoewer
02/08/2017, 12:16 PM
If they are a North Atlantic species they are temperate or even coldwater species and won't do well in a tropical reef tank.
I tried keeping pipefish I caught at the North Sea, but my success was very limited despite keeping them in a biotope tank.

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SamS
02/12/2017, 08:42 AM
Its not a tropical or reef tank. I keep the water around 65-70 depending on the time of year. All of my clean up crew is also locally sourced so there shouldn't be any unknown pathogens coming in. Its just frustrating/weird to me that they will thrive in a smaller, bare tank but when they go into a larger tank with better filtration and a more "natural" environment, they die.

I guess I could always just keep them in the smaller QT tank and turn it into a display tank...

AquaticEngineer
02/15/2017, 04:11 PM
Where are the pipefish being caught from? I would look at what the annual temperatures are in their native environment and try to keep them at a happy average temp between the lowest and highest they encounter in the wild.

mike61289
02/16/2017, 12:13 PM
I imagine you have a pathogen or parasite in your tank.

When I kept seahorses in the past, they were all tank-bred and did very well. Then, I introduced my first pipefish and it came in with something that infested the entire tank. The pipefish and seahorses died. I cleaned the tank out and waited months before adding more seahorses. They still died within a week. Whatever it was that was killing them clearly didn't die off. It only affects them too and that's the annoying thing.

Naraku
02/16/2017, 08:15 PM
did you clean with bleach?


I imagine you have a pathogen or parasite in your tank.

When I kept seahorses in the past, they were all tank-bred and did very well. Then, I introduced my first pipefish and it came in with something that infested the entire tank. The pipefish and seahorses died. I cleaned the tank out and waited months before adding more seahorses. They still died within a week. Whatever it was that was killing them clearly didn't die off. It only affects them too and that's the annoying thing.

mike61289
02/17/2017, 11:28 AM
did you clean with bleach?

Bleached, scrubbed it clean, changed the substrate and filters. I did everything but those little buggers somehow survived and continued to kill.

Naraku
02/17/2017, 12:59 PM
could by mycobacteria which is hard to kill.
Why not get a new tank and just keep them separate?

Bleached, scrubbed it clean, changed the substrate and filters. I did everything but those little buggers somehow survived and continued to kill.

ThRoewer
02/17/2017, 02:25 PM
Where are the pipefish being caught from? I would look at what the annual temperatures are in their native environment and try to keep them at a happy average temp between the lowest and highest they encounter in the wild.

Actually, they may need the seasonal changes in temperature to be well.

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mike61289
02/17/2017, 10:29 PM
I just stopped keeping seahorses altogether unfortunately. I use their tank as a quarantine tank for my reef now. Whatever was killing them years ago only affected them and doesn't affect any other kinds of fish or inverts.

Blue spot
02/18/2017, 03:01 AM
Hi Sam, what are you using for water movement in the main display where you are trying to add the pipefish ?

SamS
02/19/2017, 08:46 AM
I imagine you have a pathogen or parasite in your tank.

When I kept seahorses in the past, they were all tank-bred and did very well. Then, I introduced my first pipefish and it came in with something that infested the entire tank. The pipefish and seahorses died. I cleaned the tank out and waited months before adding more seahorses. They still died within a week. Whatever it was that was killing them clearly didn't die off. It only affects them too and that's the annoying thing.

wouldn't they be dying in QT then too? I started both my QT and DT specifically for the pipefish (never used the tanks for anything else, so the pathogen would've had to been introduced by them) so I would think the killer would be in both tanks then, correct?

SamS
02/19/2017, 08:48 AM
Actually, they may need the seasonal changes in temperature to be well.

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Water temp does vary throughout the year here, but pipefish are only found here during the warmer months, so I try to keep my tank at the lower end of the spring/summer temps (high 60s to low 70s)

SamS
02/19/2017, 08:51 AM
Hi Sam, what are you using for water movement in the main display where you are trying to add the pipefish ?

I have a HOB filter that provides a decent amount of water movement, but also have a 2 airstones near the bottom corners of the tank as I was having food settle out in those areas. since adding the aristones this hasn't be happening anymore. Hasn't changed the death rate though :headwallblue:

mike61289
02/19/2017, 08:58 PM
wouldn't they be dying in QT then too? I started both my QT and DT specifically for the pipefish (never used the tanks for anything else, so the pathogen would've had to been introduced by them) so I would think the killer would be in both tanks then, correct?

I wasn't using that tank as a quarantine for the seahorses and pipefish because I was no longer keeping them. From what I read online awhile ago, seahorses and pipefish are vulnerable to a pathogen or parasite that targets them specifically. That's why my reef fish, the ones I did put in that tank for quarantine, were not affected.

rayjay
02/19/2017, 10:09 PM
Just a correction on the pathogens.
The pathogens don't "Target" the seahorese/pipefish. Many seahorses immune systems are unable to accommodate exposure to pathogens that they haven't grown up with to become acclimated to while still young. Most other marine fish are not near as sensitive as the seahorses seem to be.
Many have had problems when adding pipefish to a seahorse tank and have losses with one or both species, but some have succeeded putting them together. It would be my guess that SOME of the seahorses are more resilient than others. This has also happened when introducing the seahorses to OTHER marine fish as well, but the other marine fish will survive.
Better success was found when purchasing captive bred pipefish but even that wasn't perfect. Possibly because some stores were misleading the status of the pipefish they were selling and were really wild caught.

SamS
02/28/2017, 03:56 PM
Better success was found when purchasing captive bred pipefish but even that wasn't perfect. Possibly because some stores were misleading the status of the pipefish they were selling and were really wild caught.

So even though I was using a single species tank (minus the CUC, which was still locally sourced from the same exact area as the pipefish) it could be possible that it is simply because they are wild caught?

If that's true, couldn't I expect to see deaths pretty quickly while still in QT, not months later when added to the DT? If not deaths, at least some indication of ill health?

vlangel
02/28/2017, 05:09 PM
So even though I was using a single species tank (minus the CUC, which was still locally sourced from the same exact area as the pipefish) it could be possible that it is simply because they are wild caught?

If that's true, couldn't I expect to see deaths pretty quickly while still in QT, not months later when added to the DT? If not deaths, at least some indication of ill health?
Not necessarily. Your pipefish has a similar immune system as seahorses since they are both Sygnathids. The problem is they don't have the same immune ability as fish in regards to their skin, their intestinal tract or their gills. In those areas they are much more vulnerable than fish.

So, if your WC pipefish is exposed to pathogens in your DT that perhaps have been brought in by a WC fish from another location, then it can succumb to that. While it was in QT it was not exposed to other pathogens.

rayjay
02/28/2017, 10:55 PM
So even though I was using a single species tank (minus the CUC, which was still locally sourced from the same exact area as the pipefish) it could be possible that it is simply because they are wild caught?

If that's true, couldn't I expect to see deaths pretty quickly while still in QT, not months later when added to the DT? If not deaths, at least some indication of ill health?
If the seahorses and the pipefish were both wildcaught, that IMO would be the worst scenario, even if found in similar areas.
For pipefish, almost all are wildcaught so mixing them with captive bred seahorses often leads to failure from the pathogen exposure.
The only captive bred pipefish I'm aware of were from Ocean Rider, so if you had both seahorses and pipefishes together from their breeding system, you would have the best chance of survival.
As for how fast death may occur, that will depend on a few factors and the most crucial one being the individual capability of the seahorse to fight of the pathogens not previously exposed to it. It won't be an instant thing normally and in my early years of the attempts to mix, it usually took 2 or 3 months but once it was almost 5 months. Then I stopped trying as being here in Canada, I had no access the the captive bred pipefish.