View Full Version : Need help/advice on quarantine tank

08/12/2006, 12:46 PM
Here is my story...
I have planned several times to make it to the reef club meeting but I have 2 small children and something ALWAYS comes up. I am going to try to make it to the meeting on Monday.
When I started my tank in Feb, my chromis came down with ick. My lfs said that ick is always present and that a fishes immune system would fight it off and they would recover. They did and I carried on adding a fish here and there. I now have a bad ick out break. My black and white ocellaris is very sick. I do not have a quarintine tank set up. I have read on another message board that I need to qt all my fish in order to get rid of ick and need to leave my DT fishless for at least 6 weeks.
I question my ability to maintain all my fish in a quickly set up QT tank.
I have 3 chromis, 1 flame angel, 1 clown, and 1 yellow wrasse.
I have posted on another board that I am willing to give all the fish to someone who wants them and is willing to QT.

It is my understanding that ick will keep coming back and kill off my fish one by one?
I don't know what to do.

08/12/2006, 01:33 PM
Can't help you except to say you can get a plastic box of a tank at Petco that will serve; use their air pump, simple airline filter-box with floss. Swipe the floss through your sump, picking up dirt or put a little of your sand in with the floss, use your tank water, catch your fish and put them in there. Dip off a little water and add a little fresh nonsalt ro/di water until you reach hyposalinity---ask somebody else what that is---and leave them there for the duration, feeding sparingly and testing the water for ammonia. Do water changes as necessary. Use no rock, no sand in the qt tank. Minimal light. That will cure the fish. Your tank will sit fishless for 6 weeks. By the 4th week in hyposalinity, start bringing their salinity up to match the salinity of the main tank, by topping off with salt water. By the 6th week, you can move them back into the main tank and figure they'll be ich-free.

08/12/2006, 05:40 PM
I resolved that issue with a cleaner shrimp. My powder blue tang (PBT) came in with Ich and has occasionally had a small outbreak but the cleaner apparently is doing his job and has managed to keep it in check. I also use Selcon in my food which I think is helping as well.
Ideally the QT tank is the best way to go but not always practical for some.
No wide outbreaks to any other fish and nothing noticeable in the last 6 weeks.

08/12/2006, 05:42 PM
I have a 10G tank you're welcome to use if you can pick it up tonight (in exton, PA), but don't have a filter for it (may have a heater) - you'd have to pick one up at a fish store tomorrow, probably just picking up a 10G "kit" tomorrow morning - they run like $30-40 IIRC.

feel free to pm me if you need to borrow my tank, i'll be up all night, but am leaving for the airport first thing in the morning.

they do sell in-tank filters that cost like $10-15 - add a spare heater and you're "good to go"

08/12/2006, 08:57 PM
Yes, extra vitamins like selcon will help. but i think a lot of ick outbreaks have to do with the condition of the bio filter . one thing you can do is increase the oxygen level. crank up the skimmer and maybe even an air stone in the sump . somehow, my tanks have eluded ick outbreaks for 8 years. I think low nutrient levels keep it in check . unfortunately sometimes my nutrients are kept low by algea and macro's, but it works for the fish. all stuff we need to do anyway, but i have often bought fish with visible ick, and after a couple days in the tank, its gone, and no infection spread. I dont know why, but its better to tweak the filtration than trying to medicate. I have been fortunate. and never had to treat the tanks. which in my opinion, does more harm to the bio filter and general tank health.

Dave is right , cleaner shrimp, or cleaner wrasses will do wonders for an outbreak too. and increase circulation too. no dead spots in the back of the tank to collect dirt and ferment.

hope these things help.

08/12/2006, 10:15 PM
I've always used a cleaner shrimp and a slight increase in temperature as well as small water changes every other day. Get the water quality high and the fish will live. I never medicate for ich and I agree, I brought fish home with visible ich and these are the steps I took to clear it up.

08/13/2006, 07:52 AM
Thanks for all your help. I hope to see you guys on Monday.

08/13/2006, 08:29 AM
We've been sold for years on the idea of medicate medicate medicate. In a sense thats a normal thought progression if we were looking at humans. Even there though the results are arguable.

In a saltwater tank (general) we're talking about a chain of events that are in an extremely delicate balance, more so than many manufacturers would have you believe.
If we can treat our problems as naturally as it would be handled in nature I think they outlook for ALL our inhabitants is much greater for there survival.

08/13/2006, 09:54 PM
well, the common wisdom says ick is always present in every tank. and you cant really get rid of it. just lies dormant waiting for the right conditions. so an outbreak is a good sign that something is wrong with the tank health. such that it weakens the fish defenses for the infection to take hold. so like nano says, clean healthy water helps them a lot. treating the symptom doesnt fix the problem. medications reduce the microbe bio diversity when what is needed is a greater and balanced diversity to keep the tank clean and healthy.

08/13/2006, 10:23 PM
As usual Ken hits it on the head. Thats what I would have said-er what I would have tried to type in 3 pages worth of text. I HAVE treated Ich in a fish only tank with coppersafe in the past. But in my newest ventures I have treated Ich like the common cold. When I get sick I don't rush out and buy 50 medications for myself. I rest/relax, eat well, and drink fluids. All that tylenol or what not is just messing with symptoms-which your body's way of coping anywho. Rather than medicating a tank its high time to investigate and see whats going on in the microhabitat in your [insert room of the house here]. However there is also nothing wrong with isolating your fish and treating them while figuring out whats going on in the tank. You know you don't even need a glass box-a clean and fish safe vessel that holds water will be fine :p

Anyways I wish you luck with your tank and your fish!!!