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abscess on goldfish?


korzal

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Hello everyone! First time posting here, but I've browsed around the last few months.

I have a black moor with a poor condition. He has developed bumps on the top of his body that eventually opened up with some white stuff inside. The white stuff doesn't seem liquidy to ooze out into the tank, yet the bumps are very soft to the touch.

One of my loaches started to nibble at the poor guy's bumps so I was forced to quarantine the black moor and purchase a 10g plastic rubbermaid tub with a 10g powerfilter. I started treatment by using a qtip with hydrogen peroxide every other day on the bumps, and salting the quarantine tank little by little each day with 10% water changes. i also decided to try "Melafix" his bumps were noticeably healing from the loach irritating them (yet did not reduce in size), but then it started to open up big again with white stuff, so I feel like im back to square one.

He has been quarantined for about 3 weeks, and the bumps started about 1.5 to 2 months ago. Please give me some guidance, I am at a loss! :no:

I've posted 6 pictures of him on imgur, please let me know if you need anymore. Thank you!

pictures: http://imgur.com/a/5QkB9

Other Required Info:


  • Test Results for the Following:
  • * Ammonia Level (tank): 0
  • * Nitrite Level (tank) 0
  • * Nitrate level (Tank) 50 (little darker red than quarantine)
  • * Ammonia Level (quarantine): 0.5
  • * Nitrite Level (quarantine) 0.25
  • * Nitrate level (quarantine) 40
  • * Ammonia Level (Tap): 0
  • * Nitrite Level (Tap) 0
  • * Nitrate level (Tap) 40 -- lately I have been mixing 25% RO / 75% tap to help with high nitrate
  • * Ph Level, (Tank) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) 6.5ph (25/75 mix)
  • * Ph Level, (Tap) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines) 7ph
  • * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? api master kit drops
  • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? tetra whisper ex30, currently using seachem purigen
  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners? prime
  • * Water temperature? 78f
  • * How often do you change the water and how much? about once a week , 20%

  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? 2 days, 20%
  • * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 20gallon, about 10 months
  • * How many fish in the tank and their size? 3 goldfish (~3"-5"), 2 golden dojo loaches, 1 pleco (2 goldfish now with 1 quarantined)
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often? twice a day, cycle between goldfish crisps, tropical flakes, sinking wafers, shrimp pellets, sometimes peas
  • * Any new fish added to the tank?
  • * Any medications added to the tank? melafix to the quarantine
  • * List previous issues experienced (dropsy, SBD, etc.) first fish died from nitrate poisoning before i knew what i was doing
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? some of the goldfish had some missing scales which i suspect was a result of sharp cluttered objects in the tank which i removed
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? the two non-sick goldfish like to sleep on the bottom at night
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment. all trreatment has been in quarantine tank -- salt, melafix, hydrogen peroxide dabbing on affected areas
  • * You can really help us to identify with the concern more accurately if you post some pictures and a short video.

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hello korzal,

welcome to kokos. thank you for filling out the questions and providing photos.

it looks like your fish has a couple of soft tumors. in most cases, these are not life threatening to the fish. i have had to deal with one recently on one of my Ryukins. i sedated and cut it off. but not before it got so big as displayed by your fish and the others had a go at it.

you are treating correctly for an open wound. they will heal up again and possibly burst on their own as a procees of their being.

90% of the time, even if removed, they will continue to grow back. we've experienced results like this many times on this forum.

as your fish is in qt, i would recommend that you continue with the salt and melafix until they heal well, but i wouldn't salt more than 0.1% as the healing process will take some time and you don't want to run the risk of keeping the fish at 0.2% or higher for too long. 0.1% can be tolerated well for long periods of time.

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Hello Korzal,

Welcome to Kokos!

Just my :twocents. As far as salting goes, here is our recommended protocol for using salt as Stakos indicated http://www.kokosgold...876-using-salt/ . I would avoid putting salt in blindly as you don't have any idea of how much salt is in your tank. Clean water with large water changes can never hurt. I always do 50% because if I'm dealing with salt, the math of replacing the salt water drained is easy. Good luck, please keep us posted, we'll help you through this.

Edit: When I originally posted I didn't read your tap parameters.

Edited by MexiMike83
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Thanks for the quick replies! I will make sure to read over that guide so I can salt the tank more meticulously.

I hope my fish won't be doomed to isolation, perhaps in the future i will split the fish up so he can be comfortable and still have friends

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Welcome to the forum! You've already gotten some excellent advice regarding the tumors.

I just want to add that your tank Ph is lower than it should be for goldfish. You want to aim for above 7.0, I would recommend using a buffer to both raise and stabilize the Ph, as a low Ph/Ph drop can be stressful if not potentially fatal. Good buffers include Seachem Gold Buffer, API proper Ph, and buff it up (www.goldfishconnection.com).

You'll also want to up your water change schedule. 20% weekly is not adequate for messy goldfish ;) A minimum of a 50-80% change weekly is recommended. This will help to reduce the organic load in the tank which will reduce the probability of bacterial issues/infections etc. While your fish is healing you may want to consider doing several water changes a week, pristine water is good for the healing process.

Finally, you may want to look into some nitrate control for your water. The nitrates from your tap are the highest we'd want to see in a tank (less than 20ppm is usually recommended as some fish can be very sensitive to nitrates higher than this). You might think about adding some pothos to the tank http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/page/index.html/_/aquatic-plants/the-amazing-pothos-r267, adding aquatic plants to the tank (if you don't already have some), and/or aging your water in a container that contains several pothos/aquatic plants in order to get rid of some nitrates before you even change your water :) Nitrates in the tap are a pain :(

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I had a thought regarding your nitrate (I've never really had to deal with nitrate out of the tap, so my disclaimer is that this suggestion might not be the most efficient). Plants will use nitrate for food and lower it in your aquarium. What I was thinking was maybe grow some in your aquarium and after they take root, possibly doing 10% water changes daily (this could get expensive, so again this is just a "hair brain idea"). But I think this would take care of your nitrate problem in the long run. Good luck.

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Oops! One more thing ;)

With two goldfish, the dojo loaches, and pleco in a 20 gallon you are quite overstocked (don't worry, most of us found ourselves here overstocked :) ). For the two goldfish alone you will need 30-40 gallons, the dojo loaches need an additional 10 gallons, and the pleco will add to the gallonage more. May I ask what kind of pleco it is?

You'll want to begin thinking about upgrading your tank at some point and in the meantime the storage tub is a great way to lighten the load in your 20 gallon a bit :)

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Thanks for the quick replies! I will make sure to read over that guide so I can salt the tank more meticulously.

I hope my fish won't be doomed to isolation, perhaps in the future i will split the fish up so he can be comfortable and still have friends

just be sure that the wound is very well healed before you make the decision to put him back. any signs of an open wound will appear as dinner for the other fish and they will peck at it. afer it shows signs of having healed, i recommend that you remove the salt and stop treating with medicines. keep him in qt for a few weeks so that it can really heal well and then you may add him.

once added, keep a close eye on him, particularly his wound to ensure that there has not been any pecking. if there has been, then you need to remove him to qt again and only if the wound is open and bleeding do you need to salt and melafix again.

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I just want to add that your tank Ph is lower than it should be for goldfish. You want to aim for above 7.0, I would recommend using a buffer to both raise and stabilize the Ph, as a low Ph/Ph drop can be stressful if not potentially fatal. Good buffers include Seachem Gold Buffer, API proper Ph, and buff it up (www.goldfishconnection.com).

You'll also want to up your water change schedule. 20% weekly is not adequate for messy goldfish ;) A minimum of a 50-80% change weekly is recommended. This will help to reduce the organic load in the tank which will reduce the probability of bacterial issues/infections etc. While your fish is healing you may want to consider doing several water changes a week, pristine water is good for the healing process.

Finally, you may want to look into some nitrate control for your water. The nitrates from your tap are the highest we'd want to see in a tank (less than 20ppm is usually recommended as some fish can be very sensitive to nitrates higher than this). You might think about adding some pothos to the tank http://www.kokosgold...ing-pothos-r267, adding aquatic plants to the tank (if you don't already have some), and/or aging your water in a container that contains several pothos/aquatic plants in order to get rid of some nitrates before you even change your water :) Nitrates in the tap are a pain :(

hehe I come for one issue and get answers to ALL my issues :) cool

I've had a problem with PH drops, probably when i was trying to find a good ratio of tap water to mix. Tried 'Tetra Correct PH', which worked but would continue to drop down over time. I've since added some seashells hoping it would act as a natural buffer (was trying to find some crushed coral), 1) because the ph products seemed like they were going to start getting expensive and 2) I read that scaless fish like loaches don't handle many chemicals too well (not sure if it applied to the ph stuff). Even so, something I'll need to get sorted out soon

Aquatic plants are a great suggestion, I haven't jumped into that world yet.... but if it helps with nitrate then it's probably a good time to get some! I'll check out the Pothos, any other good nitrate reducing plants out there?

Oops! One more thing ;)

With two goldfish, the dojo loaches, and pleco in a 20 gallon you are quite overstocked (don't worry, most of us found ourselves here overstocked :) ). For the two goldfish alone you will need 30-40 gallons, the dojo loaches need an additional 10 gallons, and the pleco will add to the gallonage more. May I ask what kind of pleco it is?

You'll want to begin thinking about upgrading your tank at some point and in the meantime the storage tub is a great way to lighten the load in your 20 gallon a bit :)

uh oh, I knew someone would mention I was overstocked!

the pleco I have is a common albino pleco....my jaw dropped to the floor when I brought him home and found out how big he would get.

duly noted, I will probably pick up a secondary tank in the future

just be sure that the wound is very well healed before you make the decision to put him back. any signs of an open wound will appear as dinner for the other fish and they will peck at it. afer it shows signs of having healed, i recommend that you remove the salt and stop treating with medicines. keep him in qt for a few weeks so that it can really heal well and then you may add him.

once added, keep a close eye on him, particularly his wound to ensure that there has not been any pecking. if there has been, then you need to remove him to qt again and only if the wound is open and bleeding do you need to salt and melafix again.

I'll make sure to do this, thanks!

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hehe I come for one issue and get answers to ALL my issues :) cool

that's the beauty of this place. we care enough to address concerns that could lead to future problems. if we can fix it now in order to prevent something in the future, well that just means happy fishies :D

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I like Anubias myself, my goldfish leave them alone and they require low light to grow :thumb: . I would also keep an eye on your pleco as some common plecos have been known to develop a taste for goldfish slime coat :no:

Edited by MexiMike83
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I just want to add that your tank Ph is lower than it should be for goldfish. You want to aim for above 7.0, I would recommend using a buffer to both raise and stabilize the Ph, as a low Ph/Ph drop can be stressful if not potentially fatal. Good buffers include Seachem Gold Buffer, API proper Ph, and buff it up (www.goldfishconnection.com).

You'll also want to up your water change schedule. 20% weekly is not adequate for messy goldfish ;) A minimum of a 50-80% change weekly is recommended. This will help to reduce the organic load in the tank which will reduce the probability of bacterial issues/infections etc. While your fish is healing you may want to consider doing several water changes a week, pristine water is good for the healing process.

Finally, you may want to look into some nitrate control for your water. The nitrates from your tap are the highest we'd want to see in a tank (less than 20ppm is usually recommended as some fish can be very sensitive to nitrates higher than this). You might think about adding some pothos to the tank http://www.kokosgold...ing-pothos-r267, adding aquatic plants to the tank (if you don't already have some), and/or aging your water in a container that contains several pothos/aquatic plants in order to get rid of some nitrates before you even change your water :) Nitrates in the tap are a pain :(

hehe I come for one issue and get answers to ALL my issues :) cool

I've had a problem with PH drops, probably when i was trying to find a good ratio of tap water to mix. Tried 'Tetra Correct PH', which worked but would continue to drop down over time. I've since added some seashells hoping it would act as a natural buffer (was trying to find some crushed coral), 1) because the ph products seemed like they were going to start getting expensive and 2) I read that scaless fish like loaches don't handle many chemicals too well (not sure if it applied to the ph stuff). Even so, something I'll need to get sorted out soon

Aquatic plants are a great suggestion, I haven't jumped into that world yet.... but if it helps with nitrate then it's probably a good time to get some! I'll check out the Pothos, any other good nitrate reducing plants out there?

Oops! One more thing ;)

With two goldfish, the dojo loaches, and pleco in a 20 gallon you are quite overstocked (don't worry, most of us found ourselves here overstocked :) ). For the two goldfish alone you will need 30-40 gallons, the dojo loaches need an additional 10 gallons, and the pleco will add to the gallonage more. May I ask what kind of pleco it is?

You'll want to begin thinking about upgrading your tank at some point and in the meantime the storage tub is a great way to lighten the load in your 20 gallon a bit :)

uh oh, I knew someone would mention I was overstocked!

the pleco I have is a common albino pleco....my jaw dropped to the floor when I brought him home and found out how big he would get.

duly noted, I will probably pick up a secondary tank in the future

just be sure that the wound is very well healed before you make the decision to put him back. any signs of an open wound will appear as dinner for the other fish and they will peck at it. afer it shows signs of having healed, i recommend that you remove the salt and stop treating with medicines. keep him in qt for a few weeks so that it can really heal well and then you may add him.

once added, keep a close eye on him, particularly his wound to ensure that there has not been any pecking. if there has been, then you need to remove him to qt again and only if the wound is open and bleeding do you need to salt and melafix again.

I'll make sure to do this, thanks!

I also like anubias, they are a great beginner plant, but not the best choice for nitrate reduction specifically. Thinking about nitrate reduction I would choose fast growing plants, things like pennywort, water sprite, water wisteria, anacharis, these plants can all be floated (or planted if you prefer) and will be better at sopping up nitrates than slower growing plants like anubias. But I think the pothos will get you the most bang for your buck :D

The common pleco unfortunately needs to go :( I would either grab him a separate tank or rehome him. Commons are known to suck the goldfish slimecoat at night when the goldies are resting and you are not around to see. This can lead to injury and death. For a somewhat graphic depiction of just what can happen check this link http://www.kokosgoldfish.invisionzone.com/forum/index.php?/topic/95615-samwise-sucked-on-by-a-plecoblood-in-poop/ Goldfish compatible plecos include rubbernose and bristlenose plecos. These ones tend to be smaller and less aggressive than commons.

You could start a great tropical tank with the pleco! :) (see, this is just a good excuse to get another tank! :P )

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Alright! I'm rocking some Pothos now in my tank. Gonna see if the LFS has any of those other plants mentioned. I like the idea of floating plants -- i have a feeling my loaches would dig them up otherwise :P

it's a bummer to hear about the pleco.. come to think of it, when i got my pleco at petco he was labeled as either bristlenose or rubbernose, but I figured they had mislabeled it because it looked more like a common pleco in all the pictures I looked at. Is there a surefire way to tell? Here's some pics of him.. I've had him for i'd guess 4 months http://imgur.com/a/nA4i3

If it is indeed a common pleco, would there be any potential problems housing him with just the loaches? thanks! :carrot:

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I actually think that looks like an albino bristlenose pleco, I would get at least one other confirmation though because I am certainly not a master pleco identifier :P If someone doesn't comment in this thread to confirm you can start a separate thread in the tropicals or compatible fish section of the forum just asking others to identify the type for you :) I think you're okay though.

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