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parkerdt

Sick Common?

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Dave usually after the M2 treatment it is recommended to run carbon for 24 hours clearing out all the med and giving the fish a break. Then to remove the carbon and run a full dose of Maracyn in the tank. Hitting the fish back to back is best but that 24 hour period to have her rest in between.

I also wanted to let you know I will be away this weekend. I hope everything goes well, you are doing good, just keep it up. See you on Monday.

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Dory's carbon was pulled after another 60% water change (med tank), and the Maracyn started. She is more interested in her food today, even swimming over to catch the metromed sticks as they sink - she catches a few then spits them all out. But she's also foraging the bottom more, and eating some of the sticks after they soften. Still resting on the bottom a lot, but not as much as in the last few days. The skin under where the scales were that she's lost looks more healthy as well, I think, a pinkish white instead of dull and dark. More scales are laying down, especially on her upper half, and she is still shrinking from the back forwards, although still quite bloated. But, obvioulsy more interested in her environment, today. Looks like she is going to lose more scales in the next few days.

15% water change in Nemo's (main) tank, keeping ammonia at .25. Still no nitrites on either strips or liquid test kit. He's looking better than I've ever seen him, and eating like an absolute pig.

Dave

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No big changes today - did a 60% change in the med tank for Dory, and day 2 of the Maracyn. She's looking a little better each day colorwise - her head is now almost back to orange, and her "bruised" scales are looking better. Her pineconing is receeding from the top down. Still very bloated tho - that is resolving quite slowly. She's eating pretty well, but not great; gonna give more garlic tomorrow at feeding. Again, less resting on the bottom, but still significant.

Nemo had a white stringy poop today - he is also on metromed, so I am assuming that if this is parasitic, the med food will take care of it? Whatever was causing the ammonia spike in the main tank is calming down, I'm able to go two days before doing a 25% now without ammonia getting to 1. Still not great, but a darned sight better than this time last week....

No new questions or issues today, just reporting in.

thanks,

Dave

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Dave thank you I had a wonderful weekend. :D

Keep on with Dory, it is encouraging to here she is doing better.....even if it is a small improvement.

The white stringy poo is usually a bacterial infection and yes the med food will help with that.

Only when a fish has continueous white stool should you worry, only occasional is ok.

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Another 60% change in the med tank for Dory and 50% in the main for Nemo - his ammonia was creepting up again, and I'm feeding him starvation rations - 8 sticks of metromed 2x a day for a fish his size.... Ah well, when we have the time and the water, we'll tear down that tank and get the undergravel filter out, hopefully that will help...

Dory is much more active at night, after her water change, before the salt and meds get fully mixed in. I wonder if we should start lowering her salt concentrations? More scales laying down normally today, again from the top progressing down. And better color still again today. She's still not eating particularly well - does not like the metromed at all, but I think she's at least getting some - gonna have to gravel vac soon before the waste gets out of hand. And I cannot see that her bloating is subsiding much, at all, in the last few days. Still her behaviour seems a little better each day when she wants to, but she's resting a lot. This is day 3 of the Maracyn.

Any suggestions, Laurie?

thanks,

Dave

Edited by parkerdt

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Same routine of changes today. Dory is more interested in eating, and has more scales laying flat on the top, although it looks like she's going to lose a bunch more scales from her fron bottom quarters. Not really much change in activity level. Today was the 4th day of Maracyn.

Dave

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Sorry not to get back to you Dave, this week looks like it will be as busy as the wknd.

If the swelling is starting to go down then slowly removing the epsoms from her water is good, but if it starts to reappear be right on it.

I would vacuum her tank at least half the gravel every week. If you haven't been go easy and only do 1/4 twice a week until you get it all "swept" then the whole thing on a weekly basis.

Sounds good otherwise.

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Last night of the Maracyn and Dory is a little more active day to day. Tonight she caught a metromed stick as it sank, of course she spit it out, but even catching it is a first. Her behavior and activity level are a lot better than when we started, the pineconing is significantly reduced, her skin under her lost scales has a healthier color, as does her head. Carbon back in tomorrow night.

But she is still very bloated. I've kept the salt at the 1/4tsp per 5 gal for now.

What else can I do? Just wait and see at this point? The behavioral signs seem good to me, but the continuing bloat seems bad.

thanks,

Dave

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Dave if she isn't going down in the swelling you can up the salt back to what it was. You are using epsoms right? If so you can use the 1/8tsp per 5 gals, twice.

Other than that, waiting is the name of the game. It is a slow process.

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Yes, Epsom. I know I discussed lowering it, but I have not, as yet. she's at 1/4 tsp per 5 gallons still. At still at 80 degrees.

So, I guess we wait. :-)

thanks,

Dave

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Today the carbon goes back in Dory's filter after a water change and partial gravel vac. I've managed to find some BioSpira locally, and, since her tank is known not to be cycled (and has had the Maracyn-2 and Maracyn) I'm wondering if I should dose her tank, and if so, when. After 24 hours of carbon?

Is BioSpira compatible with Prime?

thanks,

Dave

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Dave, Prime and biospira are compatible.

What are her levels in that tank? I don't think I would waste the biospira on it while the med is in there. It is only going to kill the new bacterial. Just continue to control with water changes. (easy for me to say I know......... ;) ).

And yeah waiting is the name of the game. However if her swelling isn't going down within a few days..........how many days has it been? Then she may be damaged beyond repair.

With dropsy it takes a while but you should see some improvement with the swelling by now I would think.

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Laurie,

14 days since onset. The med cycle (Maracyn2 and Maracyn) is complete, which is why I was wondering about the BioSpira. Only meds now are the med food. And her swelling is going down, some, but extremely slowly - most of her scales are back to flat except on the extreme bottom of her body. Her tail from the anal fin back is completely unswollen at this point, and the front swelling starts behind her gills. The difference is only noticeable over a few days, probably since I look at her so much.

Still, she's more active every day, and apparently not ready to give up, so I won't just yet, either, unless you think it is time to do otherwise.

thanks,

Dave

ps: Nemo is on med food as well, but no meds in the tank - can I BioSpira him?

Edited by parkerdt

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We just did a 50% gravel vac using the battery-powered vac - pulled out a good amount of junk. 60% water change, and added carbon back to the filter. Salt still at full strength. I will do water chem measurements tomorrow (seems silly after the big water change, rather see what is is at 24 hours out), but the ammonia badge showed safe even before the water change, so I'm betting the levels will be fine. 80 degrees, 1/4 tsp of Epsom salt per 5 gal, hardness via Kent RO Right and Seachem Neutral Buffer. I did use Prime in the change water, as I always do.

Dory does not seem to be in distress at all, never has she been listing, or sideways or upside down or swimming circles.

Dave

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Ok, with Dory that does sound like an improvement. So I too would keep it going.

I would just continue her on the med food until the 30 days is up. Since the swelling is going down I would take it down to the 1/8 tsp per 5 gals and see if she stays unswollen. Start weaning her off it so to speak. But if at anytime she starts reswelling then up it. But the sooner you can get it down the better.

As for Nemo's tank, are there no nitrates in the water? I thought there were? If the tank has nitrates in it then I wouldn't bother with it. If they are really low (under 5) then you could give it a boost to help battle the high ammonia.

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I'll do complete test on both tanks tomorrow, and post and we can see what is what. But I've been doing TONS of water changes, as you know, in both tanks. Nemo has had his ammonia too high, but I've yet to measure nitrItes above zero and his nitrAtes were at 5-10 when I measured Tuesday. You may recall he is still in the main tank that was drastically overfed that kicked this episode off; I am worried that there is not an intact cycle in his tank. I still need to get his undergravel filter out, but I have nowhere to put him atm - full-up on tanks (well, even if I had another tank, I'm using every drop of water I can make). That is one of the reasons I want to get a cycle going in Dory's tank; to be able to move him if I have to. I sure don't want to pull his U/G filter with him in there, knowing what we know about what may be under there...

thanks, as always,

Dave

Edited by parkerdt

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Not sure if we went over it, but you can use rubbermaid tubs as a substitute tank. If you wanted to house him in there while you get the filter out. That may be a vicous circle with that amount of waste under that thing. Maybe why you are still seeing such a problem with that tank. You can hook the filter and airstone up in the tub and clean out that tank. Just use the water in there. He would probably only be in there a day or two.

Once again, I admire your determination to get this under control. Alot of fish keepers would've thrown in the towel by now. Way to go!!

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Laurie, good thought, but you've never seen Nemo jump ;-) He's quite the athlete, and I would not trust him in anything without a heavy glass top. I think his Fluval 404 would be way too much flow for a rubbermaid, as well. But one the water change routine settles down a bit, I *can* use the 20 gal that I am now using for mixing/heating water for 48 hours without a problem. So, we'll see what the tank numbers look like when I get home.

thanks as always!

Dave

ps: Dory was happy to be rid of her medicated water. More active this AM than I have seen her in 2 weeks. Some noticeable de-bloating. Planning a 25% (only) water change tonight to start bringing down the salt.

Dave

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Ok here are the water chemistry measurements:

Dory Nemo

Med 30g Main 58g

A .25 1.0

Ni 0 0

NA 0 5

pH 7.0 7.0

Last water changes:

24hours 60% 48 hours 50%

Obviously both get water changes tonight as big as I can muster, and Nemo gets his tank torn down tomorrow. Shoulda bought some stock in whever owns BioSpira, because I'm going to be using a bunch I think.

Dave

Edited by parkerdt

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C**p - and I was going to have some extra water for my reefs this weekend - guess that is out. I need to do Nemo's tank over. It obviously has an impared biocycle.

I am in the process of a 60% water change on it, I have unplugged the power heads from the undergravel filter, and removed all the ornamentation. I have a lot of questions.

1. Can I put him in a bare-bottom for a few days?

2. How should I clean the gravel that I take out of his tank? Do I need to boil it?

Or will a good rinse in hot water do?

3. I assume I'm going to scrape all the algae from the glass and get all debris from the bottom.

4. I assume I should NOT clean the filter except for maybe a swish in old tank water and new floss. ( I use floss in the first level of the Fluval, followed by a level of carbon, then 2 levels of biomedia)

5. Do I leave the carbon in when I am refilling? I am planning on using Prime, when should I add BioSpira?

6. What is the downside from using softened tap water? It is going to be tough to make enough RO/DI....

thanks,

Dave

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Dave, my goodness Nemo's tank is giving you a run for your money.

Thought, do you have any access to city water? If you could "borrow" a friends or family members would be worth a shot. Of course test it first to make sure ph and stuff are compatible, but a thought any way.

Nemo can go in a bare bottom tank. You don't necessarily have to have gravel. I have a river rock tank, and others go bare bottom.

If you are going to reuse the gravel, I don't know if I would boil it. Yes you want to rinse it, but maybe in just tank water. Remember even though you have a cycling problem it is better than a non cyle at all.

Yes I would clean the sides well. Right I would leave the filter alone though. Cleaning everything at once is always bad, especially when you don't have a rock solid cycle going.

I would use the carbon for the time being. When everything settles down and you have the cycle under control you can toss it.

I don't think it matters about which goes in first, the Prime or the Biospira. At least haven't heard anything.

Sorry I can't answer question 6. My knowledge of softened water and hard water are still a little vague to say the least.

I am glad to hear Dory is liking being out of med water!! Poor little thing, she has been thru it hasn't she?

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Thanks for the thoughts, Laurie :-)

Being realistic, Dory is not likely to survive, and I've accepted this. But as long as she shows interest in living, and is not suffering, my first, best, job is to make her as comfortable as I can. As soon as she goes sideways, or upside down, we will deal with it. Until then, well, miracles do happen if you have good water, so we soldier on. I could tell stories about marine fish that I did not see for weeks after tank problems, who all of a sudden popped up just fine and wanting food. So I'll hang in with Dory as long as she's fighting - and that is priority one. Nemo is clearly tougher than Dory, but I am no longer willing to press my luck given his water chemistry. I wish I had a cycled tank ready to go, but I suspect most of us do not have that luxury. So, Nemo will have to cycle his own tank once the nasties are out - now we've just got to make it a gentle as possible.

I have city water, it just has lots of phosphates and some nitrites. Prime is going to have to do. And the lights on less for a while.

I like carbon - cuts down the stink :-) And I do think it helps remove organics. In the reef I have skimmers to do this, but skimming fresh water is futile.

We're talking about 80 lbs of gravel, so I am going to reuse it. Hopefully there is no bacterial infection going on given Dory's weak response to meds, and a tankwater rinse will suffice.

It is now me against the main tank, with a good side regard to Dory. I'm going to use BioSpira in hers once I get the salt down a bit more - she's at 75% max dose after water change tonight. This cycle is just crazy out of whack, and it is time to fix it. After 2 weeks of elevated ammonia and NO NITRITES? Something is major-league wrong.

Arghh!! this whole thing is frustrating the beejeebus out of me. But we'll get through. And I will know more for either these fish in the future, or my next fish to come.

thanks again,

Dave

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And it Dory doesn't make it, we've had two good years with her; I suspect most giveaway fish do not do even this well. So there is a little comfort there, and the fact that I've found all of you enthusiats and experts is great. I have learned a LOT.

Now we go forward and I will need everyone's help - it does appear to me that I am going to have to cycle my main tank with Nemo in residence. If Dory continues to improve and does survive, I will want to keep her segregated until the cycle in the main is a lot better than today.

So- should I plan to leave Nemo in iso and do a REAL cycle - dump ammonia into the main, and let it resolve through the whole cycle?

Dave

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Your last question is a hard one to answer. For I really think it depends on so many variables.

I have never done a fishless cycle. Either from ignorance or now I keep extra filter media in the filters I have now so that in the need of a "hospital" tank I can pick up and go. With water from the main tank and that extra media we only do a baby bump cycle, if any.

Even though Nemo seems tough now, all this IS taking a toll on him. So whether to push you luck or not.........?????? That is the question.

Sorry I am no help with this one. I think it comes down to what you are more comfortable in dealing with. For "scraping" you way thru something you are not familar with often takes longer and more of a toll than if you had went the way of familarity. Ya know????

I do hope that Dory survives, but you are right if she doesn't she has taught you great things that the next fish will reap the rewards for.

(a very nice way to look at things). :hug

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