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Ich And The Perils Of Pre-potted Plants


JenW

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I did a really stupid thing last week - I purchased a potted java fern without properly treating it first. I sponged the leaves with a 1:10 bleach solution twice, then put it in one of my tanks. Not 2 days later, ich all over my 4 fish :crp

After i pulled all plants/ornaments out of the tank to treat, raised salinity to 0.3% and temp to 82 degrees, i cut away the pot at the base of the plant, pulled away some of the wolly substance from the top then placed it under the scope. What i found was ich 'capsules' embedded within the potting 'wool'.

I believe it must have come with the plant :(

I've learned such a valuable lesson - i'll definitely pp all plants from here-on-in and will de-pot them as a matter of course... it's daunting to think what parasites are harboured within.

I hope no-one makes the same mistake and takes more precaution then I did - I hate to see my fish suffering although they're on the mend now and all the ich has fallen off.... i'm vacuuming the gravel daily and if any of those suckers survive, it'll be a miracle :D

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:( What a nightmare.

I had been just buying live plants and popping them in without treatment for a year

until I found out on here about sterilizing them. When I did I paniced and watched them so closly but I was very lucky and no probs. I will definately be sterizing with PP from now on. Hope you have got it sorted.

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Thanks sian :D - and to be honest, i would just dip them in 1:10 bleach without putting the roots into the solution but no more :( .... you should have seen Wobble, my little orange and white ryukin - she's usually so active and fiesty, but I found her resting on the bottom of the tank all clamped and gasping, just covered in white spots ....

I just stood there and apologised to them before springin into action.... :)

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Do you think I am able to relax now about any tranfer from plant to fish? Its been a couple of months since the last plants went in. The watching their behaviour for flicking etc became a bit obssesive for a while. I was reading problems in when there wasn't any.

I did have one major panic when I saw some things on the back of my Java fern I ripped the plant out attached to bog wood and sat it in the sink. Inspected and scatched a few of the things off . Once I posted in the Plants section I was informed they were the new growths. In my panic I had forgotten about the fern and it nearly died? It seems to have recovered well back in water.

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If it's been a couple of months, then no - I honestly doubt you have anything to fear... :D

The good thing about quarantining new plants (she says now :blink: ) - is that a lot of parasites soon die without a host but i think i'll go with the pp bath from now on :D

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So sorry to hear about your babies...I have learned about quarantining plants when I had a costia outbreak in my tank.I lost 3 ranchus at the time... :( Now I'm too paranoid to introduce a live plant in because I'm afraid of parasite invasion :wall

I hope your fishies get well soon Jen :heart I know it's hard to see them sick but you're very lucky it was just ich and nothing like costia!That would've been a real pain :o

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The bleach on the roots won't hurt at all Jen. What I do is Qt 48 hours in formalin in a bucket. Rinse well, 24 hours in fresh water, another rinse and that should have done anything in. I QT'd the new pond lily's this spring for a week as I found snail egg's on leaves. I removed those by hand though. But in the bucket they went with formalin for a week. No harm, the darn things where putting up flower stalks in the bucket..... :blink: They got rinsed and left in bucket for a few more day's before I put them into the pond.

We are only human, and do make mistakes.

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Kathy, it sounds remarkably simple when I look at your procedure so from now on, i'll be following your regime <scribbles it down> :D

And I agree Cathy - I was lucky it was only ich and it seems to be under control for now... a costia outbreak would've been nasty so i can understand your diligence :)

And tazz - better late than never yes? :D If you think about some of the sick tanks the plants come from, especially the ones they place in with new fish arrivals - it makes the mind boggle :)

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