Help us serve you better. Take a five minute survey. Click here!

jay


 


Archived message board.


Got the itches??

Badmans Tropical Fish Message Center: General message area: Got the itches??
  

David

Friday, March 08, 2002 - 11:17 pm
What does it mean when your fish swim on their sides on a rock or on the gravel? Do they just itch or something? Sometimes they have the jitters too. I mean they vibrate. Does that make sense?

  

Nancy

Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 12:32 am
I am not sure about the jitters, but a lot of times when fish appear to be scratching they could have parasites. Occasional "flashing" is no cause for concern, but if it is happening a lot I would worry if they had some kind of external parasite. Maybe someone else could be more specific as to what kind.

  

joycedonley

Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 12:03 pm
Check out "Medications" on the main board. Shimmy is listed on that site with some possible treatment. It is a parasitic problem.

  

David

Saturday, March 09, 2002 - 04:44 pm
I read the Medication about the shimmy and it listed a medication to buy. I can do that but I would like to know if the shimmy is harmfull to the fish or will it just get worse untreated.
It seems that there is a medication for everything that my fish ever do. I just don't know where it ends. Sometimes I feel that I need to spend a thousand buck just on medication then it is all back to the drawing board anyway.

  

G

Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 12:34 am
Only in fish keeping do you spend $20 to save a $2 investment...

I'm sure most all of us have been there and done that, so we can relate.

Sometimes simply performing a water change if you haven't for a while can help out some. So maybe do that if you're behind on water changes.

A lot of the times, it can be a parasite underneath the scales or in the gills, check descriptions of different parasites, and see if anything matches. A lot of times gill flukes will cause the flashing...among other things.

  

joycedonley

Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 07:38 am
Like Nancy said if it continues you should treat. Over time parasite infestations may kill your fish. Just wait it out and see if it continues or dissapears. Sometimes water in a new tank will also irritate your fish.

  

David

Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 02:04 pm
Hmmm I just moved the fish to my new Cycled 50 gal. tank. So that may be it. Here is what I find upsetting. I have done everything I can think of to make my fish happy, I change the water 1 a week. I condition the water. I check the water with my master kit. I don't over feed, I put the right kind of fish together etc, and my dish seem to die. I have friends that do none of these things, they overcroud their tanks, never test their water, or do water changes and their fish seem to thrive and grow healthy. I am begening to feel like I need to raise birds or something.

  

joycedonley

Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 08:43 pm
David you never said what kind of fish. Maybe your friends have tetra or some other fish that is virually almost 'bullet proof'. Certain types of fish are really pretty hardy, whereas others cannot stand any types of adverse conditions. I think you may be a little hard on yourself. Also how many fish did you move to the 50 gallon?A newly cycled tank can actually recyle if you put too much fish load on it to begin with. You need to add fish slowly over a few weeks to the new tank. Don't get upset until you've had the tank running for at least six weeks, it may take that long for things to stablilize.

  

joycedonley

Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 08:49 pm
I actually meant to say six MONTHS. A little typo here.

  

d

Sunday, March 10, 2002 - 11:40 pm
I have had the tank up and running for over 2 months now. I have tested the water and I know it is ok. I do 20% water changes weekly. I did notice that this last time my water seems a little cloudy. What can cause that. It has been two days sense the water change and it is still cloudy.
The fish that I have in this tank are all cichlids except for 1 gold fish. I only added 2 fish at a time. My friend has the same fish as I do.

  

David

Monday, March 11, 2002 - 12:00 am
One of my cichlids has the itches more than any other ones in my tank. It makes him angry because he starts chasing the other fish in the tank. Makes me feel bad for him because I don't know what to do to make him better. I live 4 hours from the nearest pet store so any medication I have to buy I do online and ordering one at a time has become quite expensive. Any suggestions on the scratching and jitters or shimmys?
Thanks

  

G

Monday, March 11, 2002 - 02:02 am
If you've done water changes every week since you first added fish to the aquarium, this may be part of the problem. You want to wait four to six weeks before doing your first water change. Doing water changes too soon after starting the tank can delay the time the cycle tanks, and may result in higher levels of stress to the fish.

A white cloudy is generally a bacterial bloom. Most of the time it is caused by excess nutrients in the water, and sometimes too much light. Lights should be on 10-12 hours a day. If you get any sunlight on the tank, that might be the problem. AS for nutrients, it could be anything. Maybe you did a water change shortly after a recent rain, and if it hadn't rained a while before that, some fertilizers and such may have washed into the water supply...as crazy as that may or may not sound, it CAN be a possibly factor. Nutrients could also be overfeeding, either overfeeding a lot once, or overfeeding a little every time. If you feed more than once a day, and/or see any food hit the bottom when you feed, then you should probably cut back feeding. Once a day is plenty. If you have pumps and/or filters causing the food to sink to the bottom, turn them down or off for 5 minutes while you feed...

The bacterial bloom "should" go away on its own, however it may take anywhere from a few days to a couple weeks, so just give it some time. As tempting as it may be, water changes usually don't help a whole lot...unless you have a LOT of waste in your gravel. Generally, its most effective to simply let the bacteria "eat" themselves out of house and home.

  

joycedonley

Monday, March 11, 2002 - 07:06 am
David just read an article in A fish a couple of months back and they said bacteria blooms or cloudy tanks are really quite common. Just wait it out. Is only the one fish itching? Parasitic problems usually affect all the fish, not just the one. Keep an eye on all of them and if more than one exhibits the symptoms check Pat's main board for the apporpriate med. I used something called tank buddies for my African tank when the fish were itching a bit. I'd wait if possible, meds can sometimes affect your good bacteria in a new tank so you want to make sure you really need to treat. Also disagree on G's water schedule I never waited six weeks to change water in any of my five aquariums. With a 50 gallon four weeks would be the max I'd ever go without a water change! Kind of also depends on your fish density...sometimes too much ammonia builds up if there are too many fish in the tank.

  

David

Tuesday, March 12, 2002 - 10:30 pm
Well you guys have been most helpful. I will wait and see what happens. Right now I only notice one fish with the itches.
I have another question for you though. I have 2 purple-blue cichlids and one orange one. The orange and purple one are always picking on the other purple one. Is that common? I feel bad for the fish. He must get pretty tired..

  

joycedonley

Wednesday, March 13, 2002 - 07:26 am
David are you talking African Rift Lake mbuna? I have two tanks of these fish and they are the only purple-blue fish I know of...if so these fish are aggressive and very tricky to plan around. If one fish picks on the other too much he will stress it out and it may be prone to disease and death. Let us know what fish are in the tank. Usually with mbuna you should have at least 3 of the same kind to disperse the aggression, however if you do not have mbuna I don't want to advise you incorrectly.

  

G

Wednesday, March 13, 2002 - 01:00 pm
Sometimes adding more decorations (with Africans, rocks are probably the best decoration to use) will help divide up the territories, and provide more hiding spaces for those being picked on. If your tank is kind of bare in the decoration department, try adding some more decorations to see if that settles things down a little. The more caves and crevices you have for the fish, the better off you are.

I know some people are hesitant to add a lot of rocks and hiding places for fear that the fish will hide all the time. Lots of hiding places generally, in the case of mbuna (and many other fish), make the fish more comfortable. If the fish feel more comfortable, they should act more naturally, and are generally out and about a bit more, as they know they have a safe haven should danger approach.

 

Navigation panel.