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Questions About Ick


Guest golden_goldy93

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Guest golden_goldy93

How do fish get ick and what is it? i'm kind of confused because mine just died from it and we tried to save in the last 15 minutes and then it died. :blink::cry1

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  • Regular Member

I'm so sorry that you lost Erine. :(

I'm not sure he has ich. Ich has 4 phases in their life cycle. In one phase they will look like little grain of salt on the fish. Did you see that?

Anyway, to answer your question. Almost all parasites need a live host. Something to give it food and shelter. The cleverer ones don't kill their host as it will also mean the end of the road for the parasites. The stupid ones kill their host fast. :(

So for your fish to get ich, something new (infected fish, plant, snail, water) must come into contact with your tank. That is why we recommend that all new fish and plants must be quarantined so that if something nasty happens, it happens in to one fish in isolation. Is Ernie a new purchase from a LFS?

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Guest jmp6161987

Isn't it also true, and I may be wrong on this, that the parasites actually are in the water and only poor immune systems are needed to contract parasites, similar to many fungus infections and diseases. I believe this is true because one time I went away for only a weekend and came home to ick infected fish and nothing changed in their tank at this time other than possibly their stress levels from the lack of light and no water changes and not feeding...etc. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I do believe this is correct.

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it would have to be in the water for them to get it. If there is no ich parasites in the water, then your fish cant get ich, however, the parasite needs the fish to survive, so if its in the water, it will be on the fish. But, it is also true that weakened amune systems will make parasites flourish, because the fish cant fight them off. So maybe your fish had it all along, and with their weakened ammune systems, it really really spread, although i dont know why your fish would become so unhealthy in a weekend?

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Guest golden_goldy93

I heard stress levels can cause ich and that they do weaken the immune systems.

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Meg is right. In most cases, there has to be parasites in the water before it can spread. Parasites are different from bacteria which are always in the water and fungal spores which can be carried by the wind. Most parasites need a live hosts and most will dead within 24-48 hrs if they are unattached. However, parasites can be transported by plants, nets, water, buckets as well as fish so it doesn't take a lot to get a parasitic infestation.

Some parasites like costia can happily co-exist on a host for a long time in small numbers until the condition is right for them to really go forth and multiply. Stress and poor water quality are main contributor to that.

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