View Full Version : Disease ID/Tank Direction

05/28/2017, 06:01 PM
Hello all. This is my first posting, but I have been following this community for months trying to absorb all the knowledge/experience that many of the members have shared.

Unfortunately, this post is spurred by the loss of my favorite fish, my Magnificent FoxFace.

Background on the FoxFace - I acquired him on 3/28/2017 and he immediately went into my 30 gallon cycled QT tank for observation. A few weeks into the QT period I noticed some small white dots that I thought to be Ich. I initially thought dosing copper was the most practical way to treat Ich (TTM sounded too intimidating), but after I did a little more reading on TTM, on 4/20/2017 I transferred him to a 10 gallon tank and began the TTM process.
Post TTM, he looked great, ate like a pig, and acted appropriately, so on 5/3/2017 I finally transferred him into my 180 gallon display tank.
Residents of the Display tank at this time included 2 clownfish, 2 PJ cardinals, and 1 small RoseTip Bubble Anemone.
The FoxFace adjusted quickly and continued to eat furiously. Everything seemed normal until 5/25/2017, when I woke up to him breathing heavy with gray spots on his cheeks, and around 45 minutes later he was dead. (Attached are the pictures of the first appearance of the gray dots and 45 minutes later when he had died).
5/26/2017 I lost another PJ cardinal, and 5/28/2017 I lost the last PJ cardinal.

Water parameters on 5/25/2017 showed Ammonia - 0, Nitrite - 0, Nitrate - Undetectable, Specific Gravity - 1.020, pH - 7.8, Temp 78.8.

I'm lost as to what happened. Prior to introducing the clownfish I had kept them in a 30 gallon cube for around 5 months, and prior to introducing the PJ cardinals I had QT'd them for 2 months.

I don't know what the next step is. I do not want to give up, but I also do not want to continue to lose my fish. This has been the second time that I have had a complete loss, the first being 8 months ago when I did not QT and lost everything (I believe it to have been from Uronema Marinum from some Blue/Green Chromis). I ended up completely starting over. Tossing the rock/sand. Bleaching the tank/equipment. Leaving everything dry for a couple months, and recycling. And this time I was determined not to re-live that nightmare and I invested in my QT tanks and tried not to take any shortcuts, but I am still experiencing a loss.

I would really appreciate any advice on what happened and what to do next.

Thank you all for sharing your experience/knowledge with me.

05/29/2017, 02:33 PM
I'll fill this out if this adds anything that might be helpful.

1. How old is this aquarium? Aquarium has been cycled since January 2017.

2. If less than six months old, what is ammonia level? Ammonia testing 0.

3. What is SG of this aquarium? How measured? 1.020 via Refractometer

4. When was the last fish added to this aquarium? Last fish added was Magnificent FoxFace on 4/20/2017

5. Was it quarantined? If so, how? And how long? Was it prophylactically treated? How? Quarantined from 3/28 - 4/20. TTM utilized prior to introduction into DT.

6. If you are using a copper based medication, which one? How often do you measure level? When? N/A

7. If you are using hyposalinity, how did you calibrate your refractometer? N/A

8. Please describe in detail, the appearance of the fish? If there is one or more pimples, are they lumpy? What color? Gray spots on cheeks of fish (Picture #1)

9. Please describe the behavior of the fish as best you can. Is it acting reclusive? Is it always up towards the top of the aquarium? Is it avoiding light? How active is the fish? Heavy breathing/lethargic at bottom of tank. Dead within 45 minutes.

10. Is the fish eating? What? FoxFace was aggressively eating as late as 5/24 NLS pellets.

Any insight would be really appreciative. Not sure where to go next with my tank. Thanks again.

05/29/2017, 05:37 PM
It sounds more like a bacterial infection to me though they kill rather quickly if that was the case. Those blotches definitely look bacterial.

Have you treated with any antibiotics?

05/29/2017, 07:20 PM
Thank you for your response.

I did not treat the FoxFace with any antibiotics. What would be the go-to for such an infection and what would have been the warning signs for next time?

Also, for a bacterial infection, what should I do to make my tank safe for future inhabitants?

05/29/2017, 07:50 PM
The trifecta:metroplex, kanaplex, and furan 2

I honestly don't know what the fallow period would be if there even is any. The treatment would only be for the infected fish.

Sometimes there are no warnings. White blotches, fast breathing.

What stumps me is that 3 fish are dead. Is it possible that what you thought was ich was maybe velvet? Sometimes you won't see any spots. A lot of times there will also be secondary infections following ich and velvet.

05/29/2017, 08:05 PM
From what I understand about the differences between Ich and Velvet, he seemed to have Ich in the QT tank. I only saw around 4-5 tiny white dots (I've read velvet is usually virtually uncountable) on him in the QT tank, and without any medications he recovered using the TTM, which I have read will have no effect on velvet.

Thank you for the antibiotic remedy. So since the fish have unfortunately already passed (minus the clownfish which are not displaying any symptoms of sickness or disease), does something like this warrant a complete restart?

Also, in the future, what should I have done differently to prevent such a loss?

I've read the benefits of a prophylactic PraziPro treatment while in QT, but from what I understand, this wouldn't eradicate bacterial infections.

Thanks again for help.

05/29/2017, 09:04 PM
I run prazipro on every new addition. No, it won't eradicate bacterial infections but it will get rid of flukes.

Since you don't think it was velvet and it doesn't sound like it was, you ran TTM to eradicate ich, I wouldn't do anything as of yet. If you knew you brought ich into the main tank I would suggest a fallow period and a treatment of the clowns but it doesn't sound like you did. I would suggest holding off on any new purchases for the time being to see if the clowns show any symptoms of anything.

The only thing I would have personally done different is run cupramine instead of TTM and treated with a 10 day course of the trifecta. I lost a lot of fish to velvet once so all new additions get prazi, then copper and then the antibiotics followed by a dose of metro bound food. Some people like to observe, I prophylactically treat everything. I look at it this way, most fish have a 14 day guarantee, they will die in that time frame with copper if they had anything. A healthy fish will handle copper with ease.

I hope all works well and you encounter no more losses.

05/29/2017, 09:17 PM
Thank you for the advice. How long would you suggest waiting/observing the clowns before any new additions?

In the future, I am definitely going to at least do a prophylactic Prazi treatment. I appreciate your insight on the antibiotic trifecta as well. I get so attached to these fish and it is really upsetting to see them die, especially knowing I could have done something to prevent the death from occurring.

I really appreciate your time to help me understand the best path forward.