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Ick !!

Badmans Tropical Fish Message Center: archive: Ick !!


Monday, July 16, 2001 - 06:38 am
Hello everyone! I am a new member. I have a situation here...
I have a 37 gallon freshwater tank with the Eclipse 3 system and Biowheel.
One week ago we got a Blue Gourami, a Black Fan Tail Tetra, a Pictus
Catfish, a Red Platy and a Black and white dalmation Molly. Everything
seemed fine and i guess I didn't look at the fins of the fish too closely
at the end of the week becuase they all seemed happy and healthy (and
because I'm new at this) so we got our second batch of fish. We got a
Aquatic Frog, a Spotted Raphael, 2 male Fancy Tailed Guppies a Black
tailed Platy and another Dalmation Molly. Anyway, an hour or so after we
had aready released the new fish, I noticed that the Tetra (one of our
first fish) had a few white speckles on his back fin. This morning there
were a few more on him so I'm assuming it's "ick". We just added
"Maracide" and took the Bio wheel out since it said to remove it when
adding medication. My question(s) :

1)Am I doing this correctly?

2)Should I just have taken the Tetra out? I think it was rubbing on the
other fish so I assumed I needed to treat the whole tank...

3)How should I store the Biowheel during this period? On the info booklet
that came with it, it just said keep it moist and exposed to air...But
how? In a bowl halfly submerged in water? I don't know but that's what I'm

Any help would be MUCH appreciated, I'm very worried about my fish.
Thank you!!!



Monday, July 16, 2001 - 08:41 am
Tina, I have never used Maracide for ick, but upon checking a bottle that I have it does,indeed, say it will work for the ick parasite. The only thing I am concerned about and don't know if this ingredient will hurt scaleless fish (pictus cat), but it does contain Aniline green. I know you do not want to add Malachite green with scaleless fish, however, there is no mention of this ingredient in the Maracide. I think the reason this nasty pest has showed up in your tank is that you are adding too many fish too soon, creating stress in the tank. Only 2 fish per week should be added to the tank until it is stocked to alleviate stress and to keep the balance of the tank in order. You need to be watching your water perimeters (ammonia/nitrite) very closely as adding this many fish at a time can create too much bioload that the bacteria can't keep up with in the beginning. Which brings me to another point.

You should not remove the biowheel or let it dry out. This is where most of your beneficial bacteria are and if allowed to dry out, the bacteria will die. It also needs to be kept in the original aquarium water as this is where the food will be in order for it to survive. Certain medications tell you to remove the "carbon filter" in order for the medication to work, but as far as I know, the biowheel is for aeration and the housing of beneficial bacteria which helps keep the tank in balance. Medication may kill off part of this bacteria, but as a general rule I do not remove it when treating a tank.

Even tho the tetra was the only one with "spots", the whole tank needed to be treated. The ick parasite starts in "cysts" in the substrate of your tank, and only when they hatch and have to find a host do you see the parasite visible on the fish.

How long have you had this tank up and running? It may be possible that you brought the ick home with you, either with the water or being not yet visible on a fish, but I still prefer to think that stress as caused this dilema for you.

A couple of other facts I want to mention are about the mollies and the frog. ollies need a good big of aquarium salt in their water for health, however, with the others you have purchased (tetra and catfish), too much salt will burn their skin. The mollies may not do well in this tank for this reason. You didn't mention what type of grog you purchased, but some species are not good kept in with tropicals. Some are aggressive and look at the fish as food, chasing and trying to capture for something good to eat.



Monday, July 16, 2001 - 08:52 am
Pardon all the typos above. I guess I didn't proofread very well.

Just wanted to throw in that one thing you need to remember about keeping fish. When you purchase them from the LPS, they are usually juveniles and will grow to their normal adult size and not to the size of the tank. Also a couple of the fish you purchased are shoaling fish, which means they like to be in groups of 5 or 6. The tetras and guppies fall into this category. You may want to keep this in mind, and maybe rethink this tank just a little. A group of shoaling fish is much prettier than having a discordant group of various species.

Sure hope I have helped you. Please don't think I am being harsh. Being new to the hobby can be maddening sometimes, and I am just trying to give you some points to make it a little more enjoyable. You have found a good site for information both at the main area and here on the message board. Stick around and there will always be someone to help you.


jsopel (Jeff)

Monday, July 16, 2001 - 10:46 am
tina..try Rid Ich+...It will work better for those malachite green sensitive fish..follow the directions and continue treatment for 3 days after all the spots are gone..and as kick mentioned get the bio-wheel back on your filter.



Monday, July 16, 2001 - 12:07 pm
Thank you everybody for all your help!
First, Kick, the type of frog I have is an African Dwarf Frog. He seems pretty happy and no one is picking on him yet and he is too small to eat any of the fish.
The Mollies look good and are very active. The original one we got seems to be picking on the new one though.
We've only had the tank up and running for a week now. I agree we moved to fast by getting the second batch of fish so quick. We just thought everyone looked good, and we were too eager. I'm sorry I made that mistake. I am new at this and will try not to make any other big mistakes.
What water testing kit do you recommend?
Jeff, I am currently using the Maracide and am a little scared to combine another medication at this point. I will see what happens and if the Ich doesn't clear up after a week, I'll try the Rid-Ich+. Thank you for the suggestion.
Thanks again!



Tuesday, July 17, 2001 - 10:11 am
Hi again, Tina. You will have to jump back and forth between this message and the one you left at the general message area, as I answered you there too. Since you have already treated with the Maracide, don't use anything else at this point. Mixing medications is harder on the fish and from what I read on my Maracide bottle there is no MG in the Maracide. Usually if the fish are going to be sensitive, you will notice this right away.

The african dwarf frog is small now, but he will grow. I really think I would consider returning him or placing him in his own tank. Joyce can better help you with frogs as I am not too knowledgable on them.

I really feel that you are headed for big trouble! If you have only had this tank set up for one week, have all these fish and experiencing ick (not to mention that your tank has not begun to cycle yet), I am in fear that your tank mates may be doomed! And since you have the ick present in the tank, there is no way that your LPS will allow you to return some of these guys so that you can start over with a much better understanding of getting a tank in proper order.

There are many test kits to choose from. I use the Master test kit from Aquarium Pharmaceuticals which uses drops to test. Whatever you decide, you need to get one immediately. With this many fish, you are going to see a very high spike of ammonia from their waste and feeding, and this is going to be terribly hard on your fish. You need to test every day and be ready to change a portion of your water frequently in order not to poison the fish. And then all the water changes will make it doubly hard for your tank to cycle. That is one of the main reasons for going slowly when stocking fish.

The next thing I fear for you is very cloudy water from the bacteria bloom that you will probably experience. They will work overtime trying to get this tank in check.

Honest to God, Tina, I am not trying to be mean here. But so many times, folks run out, buy a tank, set it up, fill with fish and expect everything to be all right. And I do blame the LPS for most of this. If they "knew" you were a newbie, they should never have sold you all these fish in the first place. The LPS is there to make money, and unless you can find someone who will take the time to help and guide you in the right direction, you are basically on your own. In your case, you have found us....a little late in any sense of the word.....but we are trying to help you. Too bad it has to be after the fact, however. Keep us posted on what is going on with the tank, do not add any more fish until we tell you it is all right and what else to add, and if I have not turned you off completely, you can email me for more assistance. I just get so upset when newbies start out, and the LPS does nothing to help them be successful. It is not your fault that things have started out this way for you, but I do wish you would have found us "before". Hope to hear from you again.



Tuesday, July 17, 2001 - 10:46 am
Kick, I don't think you're being mean at all, don't worry. You are giving me great advice (and so is the whole board here, yay!). I am sorry that I started this adventure without finding you guys first as well. But...what's done is done and all my energy right now is focused on keeping these fishies healthy and happy. Here is where we're at right now:

I haven't done a water change yet because I was worried about having to add all the proper additives while I have that Ich medicine in there. The additives I am using are 1) Cycle (the benificial bacteria and trace element liquid)
and 2) StressCoat (the water conditioner and fin repair liquid).
Should I do a partial water change right now and add these additives? How much water should I take out?
I haven't cleaned the gravel yet because it's perfectly it alone for the time being?
I do have the Eclise BioWheel system which says it's supposed to cycle the tank a lot quicker than normal plus I'm using the Cycle additive. With that info, how long should it take my tank to cycle?
Luckily, at this point, my fish seem good. I may not have a trained eye like you guys, but they are all swimming, eating and socializing.
Thank you again for all your patience with me and my tank. I feel with the proper attention we can get it under control.
-Tina (PetFinatic)



Wednesday, July 18, 2001 - 01:43 am
There is one big plus, Tina. The Eclipse biowheel. There is none better in my opinion. But I would not use the cycle. To me, this is basically a money making product...just can't see how live bacteria (that need air and nutrition to survive) make it in those bottles until someone decides to buy them.

Don't be in a hurry at this point to change your water. Let's see what your perimeters are from the test kit that you purchased today. Then we can go from there on your next step. Be waiting to hear from you.



Wednesday, July 18, 2001 - 02:22 am
Hello! I went to the LPS and had my water was fine except for the ammonia level (of course). It was off the scale. The guy who helped me had me purchase "Ammonia Clear Tank Buddies". He also told me to do a 25% water change. So I did that and also cleaned the gravel a bit. the fish seem happier... let's see what happens.



Wednesday, July 18, 2001 - 10:12 am
I am not fond of adding chemicals to the tank, but in your situation, I suspect you really needed to do something. You will need to keep checking the ammonia frequently so I hope you did purchase a test kit to keep from running back and forth to the LPS. Remember to ask us first. Did the tank buddies now cloud up your water and make a mess? These are not one of my favorite products



Wednesday, July 18, 2001 - 10:27 am
The "Tank Buddies" didn't make it cloudy at all luckily. I purchased my testing kit over the internet so I'm waiting for it to come. The man at the pet shop said to come back in a week for another water test, but I will be back to them sooner than that. What should be my next step? No more water changes for a while, even with the Ich?



Wednesday, July 18, 2001 - 12:20 pm
Okay, lets just relax for a little bit. You have done the water change with the buddies treatment I assume, so wait no more than 2 days and have your water tested again (or test yourself if your kit comes). Let me know the results and I will suggest how to proceed. Let's do nothing more until you get the bacteria going good to take care of the ammonia.



Wednesday, July 18, 2001 - 01:16 pm
Thanks Kick. I will relax and cross my fingers for good luck!



Friday, July 20, 2001 - 06:04 pm
Hi everyone! It's Barb from Aquamaniacs!! Do I still need to introduce myself when I post here??

I'm here on behalf of the African Dwarf Frog (ADF)! There are just a few comments that I'd like to make.

*Don't worry about your ADF eating the other fish. that's a concern attached to their larger "cousins", the African Clawed frogs. On the contrary, you need to be aware that your fish may eat the ADF. While things certainly seem fine now, given time, that pictus cat will probably get the ADF and I don't know that the spotted cat can be trusted either.

*ADFs should not live in a brackish environment and they should have no salt (but might tolerate just a little) in their water.

*Malachite Green in RidIch+ is toxic to ADFs, so don't move on to that med if you need to use a different one. Thanks for letting me know here that ADFs do tolerate Maracide.

*ADFs are truly awesome creatures to keep Tina, so I hope that you find a way to do so!! For more info on ADFs check out allaboutfrogs site or you can always visit my aquatic frog forum, where ADFs rule!


PS. How does one add images to the board? HTML doesn't seem to work.



Saturday, July 21, 2001 - 08:16 am
Thanks for the information Barb. I think someone said I knew about frogs...I know zip about them. I have never kept them and have no plans too. Good luck with your ADF's.



Saturday, July 21, 2001 - 11:45 am
Oh Joyce, it was probably me......sorry. But looks like Barb came to the rescue to help Tina with the frog. Thanks Barb.



Saturday, July 21, 2001 - 01:28 pm
Thanks for all that info! I am going to check out those website links you recommended. I really hope the cats don't get my little ADF, because he is about as cute as can be!!!! He has a little pointy nose that is always peeking out from wherever he is hiding. Actually, I don't know if "he" is a "he". How can you tell their sex?
I love the way they swim, and when they stretch out and float around the top. He has such personality. And he really guards his shrimp pellets. "Don't even try to mess with me!" is what he says to those big fish. And they know he means business...
Thanks again!!



Saturday, July 21, 2001 - 02:48 pm
Any time Tina! Please ask away as I'm glad to spread the word about these incredibly fun creatures! ADFs do require a lot of space to swim, unlike what allaboutfrogs taught me and the world, but otherwise there is a lot of good info there. I'll share some pics of my frogs if someone can guide me as to where to put them on the board.

How to sex ADFs? Well...

*Females are generally larger than males by quite a lot and they are often "bumpier"... I don't know about you Kick, but the large and bumpy part really depresses this ole gal!

*Females are supposed to have a "stub" where a tail might be.

*Males have a white bump in the "armpit" of the front legs (hands), though some girls may have white patches there too, but they never get pronounced and "bumpy". This white bump in the males might not be so obvious until "breeding season" and that comes whenever it comes.

*The best evidence of who's who, is when you find one (the dude) riding piggyback style on top of the other (a girl... hopefully! ), as they are mating. This is called amplexsus and they will ride around for hours like this. Finally, they start to swim in loops and this is when the male, who has his arms wrapped around her, starts to squeeze the eggs out of her and fertilizes them. Wow! What a show!!




Monday, July 23, 2001 - 11:22 am
I checked out those sites you recommened and they are great! I am even more excited for my frog now! When my tank fully cycles, and Kick gives me the go-ahead, the first fish I want to get is another frog so my current one has a buddy. By the way, I named him "Flibber-me-jibbet".
I'm also glad to know they can live long lives if taken care of properly, which I intend to do.
Thanks again Barb!



Thursday, July 26, 2001 - 01:42 am
That's definitely my answer when someone asks me what my favorite fish is... the ADF of course! Then I have to say, "Well, ok, it's the betta then."

Glad you are lovin' your froggie!



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