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Suspected Fin Rot


Guest elfkin2001

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Guest elfkin2001

Ammonia: 0ppm

Nitrite: 0ppm

Nitrate: 10ppm

pH: 7.2

I have a 55 gallon tank that has been set up for 3 years. It has been effectivly cycled for one year but I had to change out my gravel and thus completly drained the tank one month ago. I run a Whisper 5-10 and a Penguin 330 with two Bio Wheels. I do a 25% water change once a week (mainly due to water evaporation). I have three fish, a 5 year old Common Goldfish named Purdy. Purdy is approximately 10 inches long (he is a large fish) and two, three year old upside down catfish, both approximately 1 inch in size. I have an in home RO system and all my tank water comes from that system. When I do 50% water changes (rare) I will add a little bit of Prime but otherwise with my RO system I add nothing to the water. I feed Tetra Pond sticks every three days and bloodworms once a week or once every two weeks. Purdy gets fresh peas on occasions. I also have a heating system that maintains tank temp at 70 degrees.

Purdy is a large fish with an extensive history of hemmoragic ulcers. Due to his size I don't really have an effective quarantine tank, so I remove the carbon system from the filters, remove the catfish, and treat the whole tank with Melafix and aeration. We used to live in a town with disgusting tap water and I could never get my params under control. Since we moved and I invested in the RO system my water has been essentially pristine. He has been in this new water for one year and we had one incident in the beginning with an outbreak of ulcers. At that time I also lost two pictus catfish, I treated Purdy and my other two cats with Melafix and water changes and everything was fine. Approximately three months ago we started having brown algae blooms. Nothing I did would help with these blooms and Purdy started developing ulcers again, so we quranteened him in a 5 gal bucket, treated with Melafix and some salt and completly drained, scrubbed the tank and accessories. We also replaced the gravel (the old stuff was from the old water system). We refilled with 100% RO water, changed the carbon filters (left the bio wheels and filter sponges) and added a little Prime.

Everyone has been fine until today. Purdy has several missing scales from the ulcers. Most have grown back in but they are clear. His color has changed completly over the last year, he was pink/silver/and orange. He is now completly white. I noticed today that his fins are all jagged, and torn with holes through them. He doesn't have any blood or streaks and there is no whitening around the edges like with fin rot. He is acting normal, he fed yesterday just fine, and my catfish aren't nippy, they don't even go anywhere around Purdy. I have Melafix and can dose the tank again. I am weary of using salt with my cats in the tank also. Any ideas? I hate when Purdy get sick and I don't want it to develop into something else more serious.

Any suggestions?

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Guest elfkin2001

Ammonia: 0ppm

Nitrite: 0ppm

Nitrate: 10ppm

pH: 7.2

I have a 55 gallon tank that has been set up for 3 years. It has been effectivly cycled for one year but I had to change out my gravel and thus completly drained the tank one month ago. I run a Whisper 5-10 and a Penguin 330 with two Bio Wheels. I do a 25% water change once a week (mainly due to water evaporation). I have three fish, a 5 year old Common Goldfish named Purdy. Purdy is approximately 10 inches long (he is a large fish) and two, three year old upside down catfish, both approximately 1 inch in size. I have an in home RO system and all my tank water comes from that system. When I do 50% water changes (rare) I will add a little bit of Prime but otherwise with my RO system I add nothing to the water. I feed Tetra Pond sticks every three days and bloodworms once a week or once every two weeks. Purdy gets fresh peas on occasions. I also have a heating system that maintains tank temp at 70 degrees.

Purdy is a large fish with an extensive history of hemmoragic ulcers. Due to his size I don't really have an effective quarantine tank, so I remove the carbon system from the filters, remove the catfish, and treat the whole tank with Melafix and aeration. We used to live in a town with disgusting tap water and I could never get my params under control. Since we moved and I invested in the RO system my water has been essentially pristine. He has been in this new water for one year and we had one incident in the beginning with an outbreak of ulcers. At that time I also lost two pictus catfish, I treated Purdy and my other two cats with Melafix and water changes and everything was fine. Approximately three months ago we started having brown algae blooms. Nothing I did would help with these blooms and Purdy started developing ulcers again, so we quranteened him in a 5 gal bucket, treated with Melafix and some salt and completly drained, scrubbed the tank and accessories. We also replaced the gravel (the old stuff was from the old water system). We refilled with 100% RO water, changed the carbon filters (left the bio wheels and filter sponges) and added a little Prime.

Everyone has been fine until today. Purdy has several missing scales from the ulcers. Most have grown back in but they are clear. His color has changed completly over the last year, he was pink/silver/and orange. He is now completly white. I noticed today that his fins are all jagged, and torn with holes through them. He doesn't have any blood or streaks and there is no whitening around the edges like with fin rot. He is acting normal, he fed yesterday just fine, and my catfish aren't nippy, they don't even go anywhere around Purdy. I have Melafix and can dose the tank again. I am weary of using salt with my cats in the tank also. Any ideas? I hate when Purdy get sick and I don't want it to develop into something else more serious.

Any suggestions?

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  • Regular Member

Hi, i do not know much about ulcers or what kind of water catfish prefer but maybe you should try a different antibacterial medication to treat Purdy. Maybe whatever he's developed is now resistant to the melafix treatment and you need something else like maracyn one or two. Also aquarium salt may be helpful for your fish. Perhaps also these ulcers are something Purdy will have to deal with time and time again. I cannot understand how any type of algae affects fish like this and i do wish Purdy the best. Sorry I'm not 100% familiar w/ulcers and hopefully someone who's had more experience may be able to further help you.

Good luck. :)

karla

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Do you still have purdy in the 5 gall QT or is he back in with the main tank? -How big are the pictus, -if these guys are getting big, they can start attacking your goldie, -especially if he's a bit slow. -If the fins and tail are just ragged and torn it sounds like trauma to me, from being knocked against sharp objects in the tank, or possibly from being harrassed by the pictus while he's sleeping. Pictus can be fine with goldies when they're small, but I know these guys grow into whoppers, I had to give one back when it got too big for my tank and started eating the other fish!! -now I just avoid having them. -If the water params are fine then Purdy should be okay, but if I was in your position I'd do a big water change just to be on the safe side, and treating with melafix should promote healing the tears (they should heal pretty quickly, fin tears usually do), and keep your eye out for the edges becoming thick and white/bloodshot.. -Also think about rehousing your pictus might be a good idea. :)

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Guest elfkin2001

Purdy has been out of the five gallon and into the regular tank for about a month now. My Pictus died off with the first outbreak of ulcers in the new water. Now I just have Purdy and my two upside down cats, but they don't have anything to do with Purdy.

I only have one rock/log ornament in the tank for the cat's to hide in. He is able to rub his bottoms, sides, and back fins on it. I did notice he was rubbing his tail fin on it today but it wouldn't affect his dorsal fin. Also the tearing and fraying has pretty much became noticeable within the last 24 hours. It's very strange to me. I can stick something in the tank to keep him away from the rock for awhile, but it will limit his movement area.

Also, thanks for responding! :)

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Guest elfkin2001

Sorry I need to clarify. Purdy currently does not have ulcers, but his fins are extensivly frayed and torn. I am not sure if the lack of scales goes along with this current syndrom or not. I do know that where they scales are missing are where ulcers USED to be, but the amount of time since they have been gone I would think that his scales should have grown back.

The combination of missing scales and fin deterioration has me concerned that maybe there is an underlying problem. And SINCE he has had so many previous issues with ulcers and his age I am assuming that his immune system isn't all that great.

That's why I was wondering if anyone had any ideas about underlying causes of fin deterioration/scale regrowth issues?

Thank you for your response though Karla!!

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Hi, not sure about fin deterioration, other than to guess bacterial infection. As for scale regrowth, i'm not an expert but when i got Casper, my fantail, roughly 2 years ago, he did have a few scales missing. I even saw a scale come off his body and from what i could tell, his scales did not grow back for a very long time. Like looking at him now, i think his scales regrew but for at least a year these scales were still missing. So it could just be that the scales have not grown back yet

Sorry i can't be much help.

karla

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  • Regular Member

The only thoughts I have are, when you changed everything out. You could've went thru a bump in the cycle and this has set off a chain reaction.

Also, the brown algae you described is usually a good sign your tank is doing well. Yes it isn't attractive to look at, but useful to the tank's health.

Are you using any salt in the tank?

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Elfkin, it is important to keep all information in one place. I know it can be frustrating when dealing with a problem, but we try as best we can.

I will merge your threads together so we can keep all info together.

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Guest elfkin2001

I only had a problem with the brown algae because it was timed right with the outbreak of new ulcers. I am not salting the tank currently because of the cat's but I think I am going to go ahead and move the cats to a seperate bucket for awhile and give a round of maracyn, salt, and see how he does.

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Guest H2015

Here's what to do, make a 40% water change and use a medicine with malachite green in it and Antibiotic food, pretty much each brand has one made.

Salt can help but it works better with parasites and from what I know Melafix is more like a disinfectant than a cure.

Also signs of bacteria and fungus means something is wrong in the tank, it could be something under your gravel or in your filter but obviously not water quality as you mentioned already that you change water weekly.

Hope this helps.

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Guest elfkin2001

UPDATE: Sorry between Purdy and work my computer has been on the back burner. I removed the cats and put them in a seperate container and treated the large tank with a round of Maracyn (5 days). I also salted the tank while treating to help clean out the ragged edges. The second day of Maracyn Purdy perked up and started acting hungry and active. On the sixth day I did a 25% water change. Since I run an RO system it takes awhile to build up the water to replace. Tommorrow I will start another 25% water change and then dose with some Melafix for a day or so to aid in the fin regrowth.

The rot stopped progressing. The edges are still a little ragged but they are no longer deteriorating and the holes in the fins have closed. And like I said he is active and hungry.

The gravel is only a month or so old. I am due for a filter change but I wanted to wait until the Maracyn treatment was over. I can do a gravel vac with this next round of water change, but I really don't feel that it's the gravel. I am leaning more towards an underlying disease or illness that seems to just be kept at bay in Purdy.

I am contemplating going barebottemed though to see if it improves these illness outbreaks.

Any ideas?

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