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Author Topic: Red lump/bump/growth on guppy  (Read 7110 times)
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« on: June 26, 2012, 07:21:52 PM »

Hi there, I'm new here and I hope someone here can help me with this.

Tank Size: 20 Gallons

Filtration (include media types i.e. activated carbon, floss, etc): Carbon

How long has your tank been set up: 3 months

Using a liquid reagent test kit, please provide the following:
Don’t have one, the following is from test strips:

Ammonia: 0
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: between 0 and 20
PH: 7.4

Temperature: 81

Substrate: gravel

Décor/Live or fake plants: 2 live, 2 fake

Maintenance (water changes-how much, how often, vacuum, etc): 25% per week, usually, this week we did 50%

Dechlorinator: We use well water, but we do use a water conditioner

Who lives in your tank? Include a listing of inhabitants, feeding schedule, and how long they have had the inhabitants.
1 plecostomus - 2 months
1 rainbow shark - 2 months
2 puffer fish – 1 week
9 guppies – 2 males and 2 females about 4 weeks, others, 9 days

What symptoms are being exhibited and when did they start:
We have had this male guppy for about 4 weeks. He was a beautiful yellow. On June 17th, when we put new fish in, I noticed he had a red pimple/wart/growth/lump just above his tail. It grew quite a bit and there is a smaller one on his fluke, which appears to be on the other side but shows thru. (Not sure if I am describing where it is correctly. Pictures on photobucket.) Have scoured the internet, but can’t find anything that accurately describes it. Basically, I’m wondering if it is contagious, treatable and if I need to do something for my other fish. He has not seemed ill at all; Not slow, not hiding, not flashing, not rubbing…just normal, except the growths and color change.

Food – Tetracolor flakes, Bloodworms, algae wafers]

I can't think of anything else you might need to know, but I will be happy to provide any info necessary.

I have pics on photobucket but It won't let me post a link.

Thanks much
Pat Mary
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Posts: 8,651

« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2012, 07:52:38 PM »

Welcome to Badman's, FishFool.  Smiley

Without seeing pictures of the problem, I have some thoughts.  First, I feel that your tank is too small for what you have.  I think your rainbow shark is a problem.  They are territorial for one thing and need a bigger tank than 20 gallons.  They will pick on other fish just out of frustration. 

What kind of puffers do you have?  Also, what kind of pleco?

Puffers and rainbow sharks need a lot of plants and caves to make them comfortable.  Depending on the type of pleco, they need driftwood to rasp on.  Some plecos get huge and don't belong in a home aquarium.

Test strips are not reliable.  Get yourself a liquid test kit.  Most of us here use the API Master Test kit but any brand will do as long as it is the liquid type.  Water changes should be about 50% per week, every week.  What kind of filter do you have?  Hang on the back?  Cannister? In tank?

In the future, when you get new fish, they must be quarantined rather than just adding them to the tank.  They are not up to par when you first get them because of the trip they made from the breeder to the shop to your home.  If they get sick, they will infect the rest of your fish.


When in doubt, do a water change.
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Gender: Female
Tanks: 10 gallon: Betta, Harlequin Rasbora 20 Gallon, Black Phantom Tetra, Kuhli Loaches, Ghost shrimp, Panda corys, emerald corys
Posts: 2,295

« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2012, 08:40:20 PM »

I took a snip it from an article in the disease id resource under misc. Lumps and bumps...  Does the description match the appearance of the lump?

The ability to love and be loved is the greatest gift.
Whoa. Where did I put all my stuff?
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I know where rasaqua's stuff is.....

« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2012, 09:32:23 PM »

Andi, did you forget the snip it?

"For every difficult question, there is an answer that is clear and simple and wrong."
(George Bernard Shaw)
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Tanks: 10 gallon: Betta, Harlequin Rasbora 20 Gallon, Black Phantom Tetra, Kuhli Loaches, Ghost shrimp, Panda corys, emerald corys
Posts: 2,295

« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2012, 10:21:03 PM »

Uuuuuh. Yes. It appears I have. Lol.        Wounds that are white on the edges and red in the center are most typically Aeromonas. Those that are red on the edges and white in the center are generally Columnaris. Both are gram negative bacteria. The best treatment for this is any sulfa antibiotic with trimetheprim. This can be put in the water and mixed with food -- if you can find Romet B use it.
    (This was the snip-it I was lookin for.)

The ability to love and be loved is the greatest gift.
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« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2012, 11:22:54 AM »

Hi Pat Mary,

I wish you could see the pictures of the lump.  It is like nothing I have seen on the internet.  It’s weird!

You are probably right about the tank being too small.  Until we noticed this problem, (after we put up the 10 gallon baby tank) my husband thought it was a 29 gallon tank.  He vacuumed the tank with the 1st 5 gallons, and put the next 5 gallons (clean water) in the new tank (12 fry).   Then, he realized he had taken out half of the water. Hence, we now have a 20 gallon tank. We usually don't have more than 1 inch of fish per gallon of water.

Pleco = 5"
Rainbow shark = 5"
2 puffers- 2" = 4"
5 guppies are 1.5-2" and 4 are <1" = 12"-14"
Total = 26"-28" = Too many fish for a 20 Gallon tank

There are ornaments (bridge, rocks, tiki hut, pirate, and mermaid) for the pleco and rainbow shark to hide in and they rarely come out. We've had tanks for many years and always had a rainbow shark (because it's my husband’s favorite,) and have never had a problem with one picking on other fish, but I will keep an eye on him.  I have no idea what kind of pleco; he's brown, spotty and ugly.  Again, my husband’s choice and we've had no problems from them in the past, either.  We’ve never had one get over 10” or so and that was a 55 gallon aquarium that we had for several years, with a 6-7” rainbow shark, 6-8 guppies and some glo-fish.   I realize all fish don’t act the same, even if they are the same kind, but both of these fish stay hidden the majority of the time and only seem to get irritated if they can't hide or if one tries to invade the other’s space.

The puffers (sorry, I don't know what kind these are either) are my husband’s new choice.  We've never had them and they certainly don't seem to want to hide. They have voracious appetites and seem to especially like the blood worms.  They mainly stay in the top third of the tank. They pick on each other when feeding and I have seen them try to nip my guppies.  1 male and 1 female guppy have lost quite a bit of their tails in the last couple few days and they seem very weak.  My husband says he will probably move the puffers to another tank this weekend. (I'm afraid my guppies aren't going to last that long, so I am thinking of putting some plexi-glass or netting in to separate them from the rest of the tank. I'm not sure how to do that, but I'll figure it out.)

We’ve had tanks off and on (mostly on) for the last 26 years and have never used anything except test strips. I don’t remember any problem worse than ick (twice) and didn’t realize they were unreliable.  However, I will look for a liquid test kit when I go to the store later and buy it if it isn’t too pricey.

Do you recommend a weekly 50% water change, because the tank is so small or is that what you generally recommend?  

We have a carbon filter (which will probably be changed this weekend) that hangs on the back. We had the kind that was under the gravel once, (long, long ago) but it was a PITA, so we got rid of it.  

We usually have a quarantine tank for new or sick fish, but are currently using it for babies.  They are about 16 days old and I think they are way too small to put in with the puffers. (I believe we will be getting another large tank for my husband’s fish.) We may even get a new Q-tank and keep this one for the babies.

Thanks for the advice
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« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2012, 01:04:13 PM »

Hi Lizon and Russ,

Thanks for the link.

There is no white anywhere in, on or around the lump. It is just red, or red-orange, not the color of blood. With that said, would sulfa antibiotic with trimethoprim still be the right thing to use?   Currently, the main lump appears to be deteriorating a bit and there is a concave depression in the middle of the lump, like a volcano.  However there is no liquid, pus, blood or anything coming out of it.  It is possible it ruptured in the night and I just didn’t see it or that it hasn’t completely ruptured, yet, but right now, it doesn’t appear to have a wound or opening in the ‘caved in’ part.   I’m sorry, without a photo, that’s the best I can describe it.

I have considered using a cotton swab and hydrogen peroxide for a topical solution, but since there is no wound, sore or opening into the fish, it seems unproductive.  I have also considered surgery to remove it, except for a few things. The fish has seemed well otherwise, there might be an easier fix since I have no diagnosis, and lastly, I have NO clue as to how to go about that (not to mention I’m pretty squeamish)!

I haven’t been able to get any meds yet, because of Tropical Storm Debby, but I will go to Pet Smart or CVS today to try to get some potassium permanganate, as, at this time (with no clear diagnosis), this would more likely be categorized under “any other ‘bumps’ and ‘lumps’”.  I will also try to get sulfa antibiotic with trimethoprim, since the new information may help in identification and I'd rather have it available to use.

We have evidently been very lucky with our aquariums, so I have some questions.
- What is a “bath of potassium permanganate”?   I’m sorry; I don’t know what a “bath” is, for a fish.
- Is it safe for the plants and other fish? 
- Is this something I put into the tank or do I need a Q-tank? 

Thanks for the help.
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Gender: Female
Tanks: 10 gallon: Betta, Harlequin Rasbora 20 Gallon, Black Phantom Tetra, Kuhli Loaches, Ghost shrimp, Panda corys, emerald corys
Posts: 2,295

« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2012, 02:03:00 PM »

russ would be able to help more on the medication front, if it is even needed. Water changes can do wonders for a tank, I would do another 50% and really get the substrate vac'ed. For the latter part of the question... less chemicals in the tank the better. A QT tank would be better. During shipment to stores the packaged fish are in tight quarters with sick or fish that have nasty hitch-hikers... not sure what some stores procedures are when new shipments come in but I highly doubt big chain stores have a qt period, in anycase it is always best to keep new fish seperated from the the rest. about a 3wk period should sort out any ill fish and you would be able to treat accordingly.  Hope I made sense lol, im trying to each chinese food, work and type a response.. I'm such a multi-tasker. Smiley

The ability to love and be loved is the greatest gift.
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