View Full Version : Garlic Oil for Ich
10/29/1999, 07:34 AM
A special THANKS!!!! :) to Biosystems as well as everyone else for their contribution of information to my post Treating for Ich :
I for one, though a little hesitant at first, used garlic oil to successfully treat ich. My hippo tang actually recovered much quicker from garlic oil soaked food than he was from the copper treatment. My yellow tang started getting the white spots on him in the main tank. But, two days of garlic oil soaked brine shrimp and blood worms and NO MORE ICH!!!!!!! :) :) :) :)
The only problem was the wife complaining that the tank smelled like Venice, Italy. ;)
10/29/1999, 10:03 PM
Question...what kind of garlic did you use? Did you use the garlic oil gel tablets (vitamins) or some kind of garlic cooking oil?
10/30/1999, 03:08 PM
My wife picked up garlic oil gel tablets. I simply poked a hole and drained the oil out onto brine shrimp and blood worms, disposed of the self disolving part, and soaked for 5 mts. before serving.
FYI, be ready for some strong smellin garlic oil! Whew! :) Don't blame the ich for abadoning ship. I wanted to leave a while myself! I'll check the bottle for Mfr. info.
10/30/1999, 03:16 PM
Wow, you people are brave. Next you'll be trying Sano. ;)
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10/31/1999, 02:24 PM
Crawl: It was great to hear that your fish are doing better. Congrats.
Trust me Garlic oil is completely safe for use, even in a reef tank (at least in soft and LPS tanks even with inverts-I do not keep SPS and do not know if it would have an effect on these corals). You can purchase the gel caps from a store like Walmart and punch a hole in them and apply it to the food (I use Sundown brand 2mg garlic oil). One week of constant treatment followed by monthly treatments will do the job. The only disadvantages are that 1: it can mess up protein skimming do to its oilyness; 2: you can get an oily film to cover the surface of your water preventing oxygen exchange and 3: it can really make your house smell like an italian restaruant (but hey in my house in S. La. garlic is a staple food so that is not a problem ;) ). I work in the Dept. of Vet. Micro and Paras. here at a Vet School and garlic oil has been used for some time to help with other parasitic infections with other animals (although I personally work in human disease). I had read of its use in fish and decided to test it with blue tangs (here you can always purchase them fully infected)in two tanks that were interconnected (ie: the parasite could freely pass between tanks). The fish in the tank that were fed garic oil soaked food resolved the infection whereas the other tank did not and eventually succombed to the infection. I then mail ordered blue tangs (five) and added them to the interconnected tanks and fed always with garlic oil treated food. None developed signs of infection past a few specks during the first week and all are now happy and parasite free in the absence of feeding garlic oil in a show tank (at least while they are at this size until I find a new home for them). The theory and studies behind garlic oil and its effects in providing a background not ammenable to parasite attachment are firm. I caution however that it is not a cure for the parasite. It is only functions to prevent or lessen its attachment. The parasite can still exist in a tank and can raise its ugly head and cause problems. Quarantine prior to introduction is still the best method, but during Q I always feed garlic oil so that I can make sure that my specimens are parasite free.
I wasn't around for the great SANO wars I hear so much about but from what I have seen noone will talk about what is actually in it and I have seen some very disturbing results from side-by-side studies done with SANO-although I personally have no experience with the product. Alternatives such as capsacin treatment have also been proposed and met with some success (many of the reef safe cures contain this extract from red peppers). I however tend to stay away from capsacin treatments b/c it causes the outer slime layers to be sloughed off and the parasite with them. It is my belief that this is not a very good condition for the fish and that it will make the fish more attractive for secondary infections-if not re-infection by the parasite. So until I find something different I will stick with hypo salinity where I can and couple that with garlic oil.
10/31/1999, 04:54 PM
Well, I'm glad there is an option that shows promise, and one that apparently can be used in a reef. It sounds like you went to quite some trouble to prove to yourself it was an effective method. When this thread plays itself out I think it should be archived. Thanks
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11/02/1999, 03:27 PM
Hey Biosystems, if Garlic works well (and it appears it does), why would you still use hyposalinity (just curious).
11/02/1999, 08:31 PM
In a reef tank you can of course not use hyposalinity for the treatment of parasites (at least not down to levels that are effective in its destruction) I therefore would not use hypo in this condition. In the case of a fish only or Q tank, I would use hyposalinity in conjunction with Garlic for several reasons: 1) Feeding garlic to fish does nothing to kill the parasite. The hope with these treatments are simple-continuous feeding keeps the parasitic infection under control. Notice I said previously to feed with garlic oil until resolved or for at least a week (in badly infected fish from the LFS it sometimes took several weeks of feeding to get the levels of garlic in the fish's blood stream to clear the physical appearance of parasitemia) and then continue feeding once per month or as needed. 2) Hyposalinity can actually kill parasites b/c of the lack of osmoregulation in these organisms. It is not a rapid process however, b/c some parasites can encyst and resist this treatment. Therefore, the only way to kill these parasites is really providing an environment that is not very permissive for the parasite. It is my firm belief that hyposalinity resistant organisms do exist and/or that the encysted stage of these parasites protects them (which it is known to do) from these conditions. It is also well known that if the vegatative parasite can not find a suitable host (fish) in a given period of time then it will die. I therefore believe that by using both treatments, when the tank is conducive for such, provides for killing the parasite by hyposalinity, preventing its infestation onto fish by garlic oil treatment, and not providing a host that is amenable to infections in future conditions through garlic oil. It in my mind strengthens the likelyhood of completely abbrogating future infections by completely removing the parasite from a system.
I did leave off something that was included in those statements of treatment and this is b/c it is always part of my regular routine. All the fish were fed with Vitamins (high in Vit C and B) and HUFA through Selco(n). This in itself will help resolve many infections in fish by boosting the immune system as Henry points out in a previous thread. But in the case of the very highly parasitized fish it did little good, as all (3) in the control group succumbed to the infection. I also realize these are small numbers of fish 3 per group the first time and 5 on second addition, but this is not a lab and I have to provide good homes/or tanks for these fish as I refuse to give them back to the stores here.
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