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Author Topic: My new Elassoma gilberti are sick with fungus?  (Read 20498 times)
Zapins
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« on: May 10, 2013, 12:09:08 AM »

I used to be a long time member of this forum many years ago (before 2004), but it seems my original account under the name of Zapins was deleted Sad Anyway, I have a question about a disease that is affecting my Elassoma giberti.

I bought some wild caught gilberti a few weeks ago after having such great success with my evergladeis. When they arrived one was dead in the bag and had filamentous threads coming off it. I didn't think much of it, but then about a week later several of my fish had the same thing. I put them in a hospital tank and added some salt and raised the temperature (assuming it was ich). The fish died the next day and had developed lesions down to the bone. I went to the store and bought malachite green, assuming that it was a fungal issue, I dosed the tank with malachite green and waited, another fish died, so I spot treated the remaining sick fish right on the infection. The fluffy stuff didn't die in the slightest. The fish eventually died and the remaining fish seemed healthy. A few weeks went by and now suddenly I see most of the remaining 5 fish are infected with the same thing.

I caught one of the fish and took a small sample of the fluff and examined it under a microscope. I also took a picture (sorry for the crappy pic I didn't have time to get a perfect one).

I decided to try copper sulfate on all 5 remaining fish. I've got them in a hospital tank and have dosed them according to these instructions: Stock solution= 21 grams of Copper Sulfate 1 pint of distilled water. Shake well. Use 1 drop per every gallon of aquarium water= .15ppm.

This stuff is extremely aggressive, fish seem to die in a matter of days. Any idea what it is or how to treat it?

Can a moderator please help me attach a photo and a youtube video of the disease? It forbids me to add a link without 10 posts. My old account had over 1000 if you can look it up?



« Last Edit: May 10, 2013, 07:13:55 AM by Karen » Logged
Karen
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« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2013, 05:03:44 AM »

Send me an e-mail with the links.


Were these fish placed right into your main tank at the start or were they quarantined?  You have said that you moved them to a hospital tank, so I fear that you did not QT them.



Got them in for you.
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« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2013, 12:30:02 PM »

Ever use iodine on a fish?  I would wonder if a few drops on a fish held out of water for 10-15 seconds, then placed into a small amount of water briefly would help.

Its not bacterial, I can see a few individual cells in the video.  Bacteria are too small for that.  What magnification are you using?
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Zapins
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« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2013, 03:47:17 PM »

I put the fish into their own tank. It is a species only tank since other fish tend to make Elassoma's uncomfortable. They were the only fish in the at any point, so they were effectively quarantined.

The fish in the picture above has died. The 4 remaining fish are still sick. I'm not sure that the copper sulfate is doing anything to stop whatever this is.

These are wild caught fish from the everglades of America if that helps ID the disease.

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Zapins
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« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2013, 03:49:56 PM »

Also, no I've never used iodine to treat fish before. Are you talking about the iodine people use for cuts?

As for the microscope images they are 20x and 10x respectively. I don't think they are bacterial, or protozoan. It looks a little like fungus to me, but shouldn't the salt and the malachite green have killed that off? For that matter what about the copper sulfate? Do you think I should increase the copper sulfate dose from what they recommended above?
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Karen
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« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2013, 05:05:16 PM »

I presume you mean 200x and 100x?  Your eye piece is 10x and the objectives are 10x and 20x?

You are in a crisis and must act now situation.  Up the salt.  Up the salt a LOT.  What do you currently have in there for salt? 

Be ready to destroy the bacteria colonies in your filter and have to recycle.  Salt is very damaging to many groups of aquatic organisms, and fish are surprisingly tolerant to short term exposures to it.  If you don't already have a TABLE spoon of salt in per gallon, get there now!  If you do, go for two.  I would start a 3 day panic salt attack.  1 table spoon of salt per gallon on day one, up that to two for day two and 3 for day three.  Day four is a massive water change and do the math to get the water back down to 1 table spoon of salt.  Be careful on day three... that may be too much salt for the fish to deal with.  Be ready to do that water change in as few as 6 hours rather than 24.

Salt gets dissolved in tank water and added as brine... don't dump spoonfuls of salt into your tank.
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« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2013, 08:54:34 PM »

Yes Karen 200x and 100x, I was referring to the objective strength not the total Smiley

I've done a bit more research on the issue and I am fairly certain the disease is Flavobacterium columnare. It is immune to malachite green, rapidly spreads above 80F, is flesh eating, and occurs often in wild caught fish & during shipping (stress).

I read that Furan-2 and Kanacyn are best used together to treat the infection since they work well against gram negative bacteria. I was unable to find Kanacyn but I did buy Furan-2. I dosed it a few minutes ago after doing a large water change to get rid of the copper sulfate.

Should I also add salt in conjunction with the Furan-2 or would this not be a good idea?

Also, I noticed that your email address says you live in CT? What part? I'm near New Haven.
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« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2013, 11:51:17 AM »

Bad news. One more fish died. 3 left now.

I'm not sure if the Furan-2 is working or if that particular fish was just too far gone for it to work.

I'm beginning to think that I cannot save these fish...
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« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2013, 04:29:24 PM »

I was sure that looked familiar. I'm sure I wrote a little bit about Flavobacterium columnare for either an essay or presentation.. However, I think what I researched about it is exactly what you've found out.
Not sure if too late for fish now but would lowering the tank temperature a bit possibly help?
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« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2013, 07:49:11 PM »

I've had the temp at 70F for the last few weeks in an attempt to keep the disease under control, so its about as cold as I can make it.

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« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2013, 01:07:25 AM »

Last time I had fingus in my tank I raised the temperature a bit and added some brand fungus removal and that solved the problem in a couple days. I only added the required amount once a day too.
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Karen
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« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2013, 06:23:12 PM »

Go colder...68 won't hurt the fish.

I would not mix the salt with the furan.

Try calling an aquarium and asking if you can order the fungucide through their vet staff.  I know folks at Mystic, but Norwalk is closer to you.  I live in Jewett City.  Another good option is to call a vet.  I am not at home, can't research it for you right now.  There are a few pet med websites, but you have to deal with shipping times.  You may not have that kind of time.
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« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2013, 12:51:32 AM »

Yes I've been trying to go below 70 but my room is at 70F so I can't go colder.

I started dosing salt as well as the furan. I don't think its having a bad effect together. I am unsure if the fish are getting better or not. There don't seem to be any new clusters of infection on the fish but I don't see them going away yet.

I'm up to 3 level tablespoons of salt in the 2.5g tank. I've been adding it slowly over the course of the day so it doesn't shock them, dissolved in water then to the tank.

I'll add the 2nd tablespoon per gallon tomorrow. Hopefully it will kill off the infection and save my fish.

Oh interestingly I found 1 single egg in their tank (when i first transferred them over from their old tank). I think I must have accidentally netted it and transferred it to the hospital tank. I removed it before adding meds/salt. I've been keeping it in a petri dish for the last few days and I took a photo of it tonight with my microscope. It is developing. I think its going to make it so there seems to be a small silver lining to this horrible situation. I'll raise it in its own tank.

Anyway, enjoy!

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« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2013, 01:26:43 AM »

Ohh who am I kidding? Here is the video I couldn't wait till people ask for it Smiley

Be sure to set it to 720p instead of 480

Here is the video if you want to see its heart pumping blood


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XW0IzE60eTc&feature=youtu.be

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« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2013, 04:25:16 AM »

That's amazing!
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« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2013, 04:41:43 AM »

Ohh it's still so young, such a cute little yolk sac!
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« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2013, 09:34:33 AM »

Oh wow! I hope your remaining fish can be saved and all will go well with this little fellow also!  Smiley
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« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2013, 08:54:18 PM »

Very good news!

I've got 4 tablespoons of aquarium salt in the 2.5 gallon tank (1.6 table spoons / gallon) and the infection is definitely on the retreat! I see small red lesions where the bacteria was anchored and has died off. I'm going to increase the salt concentration by another half spoon or maybe full spoon to a final salt concentration of between 1.6-2 tablespoons/gallon and then wait a week or so until I am sure it has been fully killed off.

I don't know if the Furan-2 actually did anything since I'm pretty sure antibiotics don't take 2-3 days to start killing off bacteria.

I'll probably finish the course of antibiotics though just in case.

What should I name the baby? Smiley
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« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2013, 10:28:02 PM »

Lucky
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« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2013, 10:36:42 PM »

  What should I name the baby? Smiley 

Lucky 

I second that!  " Lucky"

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« Reply #20 on: May 14, 2013, 05:10:11 AM »


What should I name the baby? Smiley


Morton


I am so glad to hear you are having success.  Salt is the unsung hero of the fish world.  A swing in salinity is VERY difficult for so many microorganisms, yet vertebrates can deal.  It kills me to see people think that salt needs to be in their water at all times in low doses... NO, it doesn't.  But when you need it... put it in!

Unrelated, but kinda related... sea-stars are so sensitive to salinity that a massive rain storm can kill them by the thousands in harbors like LI Sound and Narragansett Bay.
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« Reply #21 on: May 14, 2013, 05:29:19 AM »

On a side note baby antibiotics take 2 days to kick in maybe it's the same for fish?
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« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2013, 09:36:10 PM »

Yes it seems like salt is definitely the #1 weapon in our arsenal. I'll be using it from now on as the primary cure Smiley

I like the name Lucky!

Here are some pseudo "ultrasound" baby videos (microscope videos) of Lucky developing. It seems he/she has hatched and is developing nicely (any guesses on gender? Smiley ).

You can see its heart beating and the blood circulating through the new arteries/veins. In the last video you can even see individual blood cells squeezing through a small blood vessel at the tip of the tail.

I'm trying my best to get a proper dedicated "photomicro adapter L" tube so I can mount my high definition camera to the microscope, but the part seems exceptionally rare now Sad


Be sure to watch these on 1080p (HD) and full screen if you want to see the blood cells!
At 100x (body shot)


At 200x (tail shot)


At 200x + zoom on my video camera (zoomed in tail)


« Last Edit: May 14, 2013, 09:48:55 PM by Zapins » Logged
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« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2013, 10:27:29 AM »

That developing embryo is amazing!  Great photography.
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« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2013, 12:34:00 PM »

How are the poorly fish doing? Improving?
Was showing a friend of mine in school some of your embryo videos, she thought they were fab and I'm sure one of our lecturers would love it.
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