BAD NEWS - Velvet Strain Survives 1.75 PPM Copper!

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If this is true, then why is copper still being advocated for prophylactic treatment? surely people should be using it as sparingly as possible and only on confirmed diagnosis of disease. The antibiotic example you give is a prime example of it, overuse in the wrong indications have led to resistance and now were desperately trying to resolve this with lots of education about only using it when therapeutically indicated... surely the ethical stance for R2R and @HotRocks @4FordFamily to start taking, is to reserve copper purely for treatment...
As a function of how many fish we have seen sick, every batch is riddled with 2-3 ailments, flukes and velvet being the most common— I would say not using copper or CP will almost certainly end poorly. But that’s for each reader to decide for themselves.
 
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If this is true, then why is copper still being advocated for prophylactic treatment? surely people should be using it as sparingly as possible and only on confirmed diagnosis of disease. The antibiotic example you give is a prime example of it, overuse in the wrong indications have led to resistance and now were desperately trying to resolve this with lots of education about only using it when therapeutically indicated... surely the ethical stance for R2R and @HotRocks @4FordFamily to start taking, is to reserve copper purely for treatment...
I wish it were that simple. The timeline for identification and successful treatment in many of these cases make it difficult to save a fish showing obvious outward symptoms. The aquaculture industry tends to rely on necropsies of the first few fatalitites to properly identify and treat parasites/bacterial infections. That isn't practical for the hobbyist.
So, what we are left with is an ethical dilemma with no easy answer. What is more ethical, treating fish almost guaranteed to have these issues immediately in an effort to minimize losses while knowing that this option is temporary or to not treat until we have symptoms which may lead to more total fish deaths?
The best answer would be for the supply chain to clean up it's act. If every wholesaler and retailer would take down and sterilize their systems at least several times a year we would get fish in much healthier conditions. This would increase the odds of a fish being able to use its immune system to fight off any pathogens it does have.
Until that time, I think it is important to encourage research on both the use of medications and more natural methods to improve fish health.
 

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It is also unlikely that a 250mg treatment 4 times a day in a 150 pound person would work but not work in a treatment for a person who weighted 200 pounds even though there would be a significant difference in effective dose. We know through scientific testing that 1.75ppm is (or arguably has been) effective but a 25% reduction from that is not. I feel the difference is the exposure time. When you are treating with antibiotics for 10 to 14 or more days the bacteria is exposed the entire time. When treating a parasite with copper your window of exposure can be as little as a few minutes.


I would agree it would have been better to say that there MIGHT be a copper resistant strain but I would call it word lawyering since they backed up that phrase with their experience. Those comments made it clear it was personal experience and opinion and not scientifically proven fact. Had they made that comment, unsupported in a scientific journal, I would agree it was inappropriate. I would argue that getting the word out quickly was more important than worrying about misleading someone that a thorough scientific study was conducted.


It is absolutely inevitable that copper resistant strains evolve, just like every antibiotic will eventually become worthless which is why new ones must continuously be developed. This does not mean that using antibiotics as a treatment protocol doesn't make sense.
As for CP, it has plenty of problems with it also. Plenty of work needs to be, and is being, done to see if a reliable manner of using it can be developed for hobbyists.
But, this entire concept is why I support all of the effort people put in to trying to find ways around all of the treatments currently in use. The hobby and it's challenges are constantly changing and the more possible paths we can go down and share information on the better imo.
What you say makes sense. And its entirely possible that I misunderstood the intent of the thread. Again - this may be my problem - but there is a definition of what 'resistant' means (and what I have been saying in most of my posts is that resistance to copper would be unheard of)The fact that one (or 2) times velvet seemed to survive - and required a higher dose to kill it which is still within the window of 'therapeutic' doses is not resistance... The term resistance was first used by @Crabs McJones on the first page - so perhaps we're talking apples and oranges here - with neither side understanding what the other was saying. In rereading the OP - it implied that there was a resistant strain of velvet - but didnt actually say it. So - I apologize if I misunderstood what was being said.

In any case - I would comment that if the therapeutic window is between 1.5 and 2.5 - that - to avoid resistance it would be better perhaps to use the higher dose in any case. @Mortie31 also makes a valid point - It may be that prophylactic 'anything' is part of the problem.
 
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As a function of how many fish we have seen sick, every batch is riddled with 2-3 ailments, flukes and velvet being the most common— I would say not using copper or CP will almost certainly end poorly. But that’s for each reader to decide for themselves.
Why do you buy sick fish? it’s the problem with mailordering them that seems so popular in the US, I don’t understand why people don’t buy them from there LFS, by building relationships with them they will order them in for you, you can then observe and treat as required..
 

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I wish it were that simple. The timeline for identification and successful treatment in many of these cases make it difficult to save a fish showing obvious outward symptoms. The aquaculture industry tends to rely on necropsies of the first few fatalitites to properly identify and treat parasites/bacterial infections. That isn't practical for the hobbyist.
So, what we are left with is an ethical dilemma with no easy answer. What is more ethical, treating fish almost guaranteed to have these issues immediately in an effort to minimize losses while knowing that this option is temporary or to not treat until we have symptoms which may lead to more total fish deaths?
The best answer would be for the supply chain to clean up it's act. If every wholesaler and retailer would take down and sterilize their systems at least several times a year we would get fish in much healthier conditions. This would increase the odds of a fish being able to use its immune system to fight off any pathogens it does have.
Until that time, I think it is important to encourage research on both the use of medications and more natural methods to improve fish health.
I think it could be made simpler, one way would be for everyone to stop mailordering fish, visit the LFS’s and actually observe fish before there bought... it’s fun and a lot safer all around. You have then observed at the shop, spoken to them, built a relationship over time, so trust is developed, you can the observe the fish at home and treat if anything emerges, surely a far better solution? For reasons I can’t fathom the issue of fish health seems to be so much more prevalent in the US than in Europe and I can only put it down to the way you buy them, most people I know would never dream of mailordering there fish...I’m wondering if it’s this habit that helps drive it as know one would ever buy a fish covered with velvet.. and may drive wholesaler and distribution standards up...
 
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Why do you buy sick fish? it’s the problem with mailordering them that seems so popular in the US, I don’t understand why people don’t buy them from there LFS, by building relationships with them they will order them in for you, you can then observe and treat as required..
An LFS is another system of shared water where they’re exposed to more parasites. It’s one more system of water for them to acclimate to on their journey. For this reason, some LFS don’t add value they detract it in this way. They also get their fish from the same sources.

Some LFS are responsible and add a service of getting them to eat, some light treatment, and other TLC. Others detract value as stated above. And still, they source fish from the same places. Live aquaria for example has the same source as most LFS and other online retailers here in the states.

If you find a distributor in the US selling non-diseased fish right now please send me a PM and let me know who.
 

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The best answer would be for the supply chain to clean up it's act. If every wholesaler and retailer would take down and sterilize their systems at least several times a year we would get fish in much healthier conditions. This would increase the odds of a fish being able to use its immune system to fight off any pathogens it does have.
Until that time, I think it is important to encourage research on both the use of medications and more natural methods to improve fish health.
I think that it is certainly important to encourage research on both the use of medications and natural methods to improve fish health. I am curious - though - where is the information that there are 'problems in the supply chain' that need to be cleaned up? I am wondering how retailers and wholesalers would be able to 'take down and sterilize their systems several times/year' and still run a business?

The reason im asking is not to be contentious - Ive said numerous times that there must be some validity to QT methods nearly every major aquarium has some kind of biological security protocol - the reason I'm asking is that something doesn't completely 'add up' in my mind. There are certainly a lot of people based on polls here that do no kind of quarantine - yet though we hear about fish disease - it doesnt seem be a large number of people buying fish (or no one would buy fish - or everyone would QT). For example - without QT - I never had a problem with a disease wipe out until I ordered fish online (after decades of buying fish). Is that the supply chain that needs to be 'cleaned up'?

For example - I would wonder where @HotRocks is ordering his fish from based on this quote.

As a function of how many fish we have seen sick, every batch is riddled with 2-3 ailments, flukes and velvet being the most common— I would say not using copper or CP will almost certainly end poorly. But that’s for each reader to decide for themselves.
 
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I think it could be made simpler, one way would be for everyone to stop mailordering fish, visit the LFS’s and actually observe fish before there bought... it’s fun and a lot safer all around. You have then observed at the shop, spoken to them, built a relationship over time, so trust is developed, you can the observe the fish at home and treat if anything emerges, surely a far better solution? For reasons I can’t fathom the issue of fish health seems to be so much more prevalent in the US than in Europe and I can only put it down to the way you buy them, most people I know would never dream of mailordering there fish...I’m wondering if it’s this habit that helps drive it as know one would ever buy a fish covered with velvet.. and may drive wholesaler and distribution standards up...
Would never dream of mail ordering fish...? Literally LFS get them the exact same way. I worked at an LFS for years, here in the states as well.

I am all for supporting good LFS and paying the markups— but I’m also wise to how uneconomical it would be for them to treat them or isolate them all, and sterilize between each fish (which would be required to not introduce them to more parasite-infested waters— by sheer number of volume moving in and out of the LFS).

Here’s an article on the subject:

https://www.reef2reef.com/ams/lfs-fish-“treatment”-the-“sudden”-need-for-quarantine.308/
 
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I think that it is certainly important to encourage research on both the use of medications and natural methods to improve fish health. I am curious - though - where is the information that there are 'problems in the supply chain' that need to be cleaned up? I am wondering how retailers and wholesalers would be able to 'take down and sterilize their systems several times/year' and still run a business?

The reason im asking is not to be contentious - Ive said numerous times that there must be some validity to QT methods nearly every major aquarium has some kind of biological security protocol - the reason I'm asking is that something doesn't completely 'add up' in my mind. There are certainly a lot of people based on polls here that do no kind of quarantine - yet though we hear about fish disease - it doesnt seem be a large number of people buying fish (or no one would buy fish - or everyone would QT). For example - without QT - I never had a problem with a disease wipe out until I ordered fish online (after decades of buying fish). Is that the supply chain that needs to be 'cleaned up'?

For example - I would wonder where @HotRocks is ordering his fish from based on this quote.
Without naming names, the sources come from distributors (plural, three total) that probably source the vast majority of marine fish that are not drop shipped in the US. Their market share is immense. I don’t know of any LFS that don’t use them predominantly, furthermore.
 

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Would never dream of mail ordering fish...? Literally LFS get them the exact same way. I worked at an LFS for years, here in the states as well.

I am all for supporting good LFS and paying the markups— but I’m also wise to how uneconomical it would be for them to treat them or isolate them all, and sterilize between each fish (which would be required to not introduce them to more parasite-infested waters— by sheer number of volume moving in and out of the LFS).

Here’s an article on the subject:

https://www.reef2reef.com/ams/lfs-fish-“treatment”-the-“sudden”-need-for-quarantine.308/
I think that many LFS (at least in this area) - are making money doing maintenance (which includes setting up and stocking tanks) - which was not as common in prior years. Meaning that they can provide Fish that are properly quarantined (at least observationally at first - and then treated appropriately if necessary). If I'm putting in (as an LFS) 20 fish into a tank in an office building (where of course there is no opportunity to QT before the tank goes in on site) - I would make sure that those fish are not carrying disease. This is how LFS (at least in my area) are able to QT (observe and treat as needed) and still make money. Also - this area may be an anomaly - but I have heard of no LFS purposefully losing low dose copper in their tanks (though some use therapeutic copper in some tanks).
 

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Without naming names, the sources come from distributors (plural, three total) that probably source the vast majority of marine fish that are not drop shipped in the US. Their market share is immense. I don’t know of any LFS that don’t use them predominantly, furthermore.
I believe (but I will check for sure) that the LFS I go to gets their stock directly from the source - not a distributor. I know that I ordered a fish last year that came directly from XMAS island. After that fish came in -it remained in copper free water for I think a month until I took it home. As I said the only time I had a tank wipeout was when I ordered fish from a 'internet distributor' but maybe not one of the big 3. Nice article...
 

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Would never dream of mail ordering fish...? Literally LFS get them the exact same way
I’ve never mailordered a fish in my life, yes some LFS in the UK mail order them but a lot also collect directly from wholesalers. But the benefit of buying in person is that, I can discuss when it arrived see how the fish is rested, feeding and I can observe them carefully and if need be walk away, I’ve recently stocked a 750L tank with 30 new fish, bought from 5 different LFS I have used for years, yes it takes time and effort but I have had no issues apart from 2 white tail tangs that were determined to kill each other.. I just don’t get mailordering and the obvious poor quality of the fish being supplied, but also why on earth people keep buying from them, it makes no sense whatsoever to me, and drives the prophylactic medicating culture that may have caused the resistant velvet this thread is about... the chain needs breaking somehow, you all can’t keep on doing what your doing..
 
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I’ve never mailordered a fish in my life, yes some LFS in the UK mail order them but a lot also collect directly from wholesalers. But the benefit of buying in person is that, I can discuss when it arrived see how the fish is rested, feeding and I can observe them carefully and if need be walk away, I’ve recently stocked a 750L tank with 30 new fish, bought from 5 different LFS I have used for years, yes it takes time and effort but I have had no issues apart from 2 white tail tangs that were determined to kill each other.. I just don’t get mailordering and the obvious poor quality of the fish being supplied, but also why on earth people keep buying from them, it makes no sense whatsoever to me, and drives the prophylactic medicating culture that may have caused the resistant velvet this thread is about... the chain needs breaking somehow, you all can’t keep on doing what your doing..
Wholesalers mail fish... that’s what I’m trying to explain to you. An LFS is simply another stop before the end customer. We are buying through an LFS which is being shipped directly to our houses from the wholesalers.
 
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I believe (but I will check for sure) that the LFS I go to gets their stock directly from the source - not a distributor. I know that I ordered a fish last year that came directly from XMAS island. After that fish came in -it remained in copper free water for I think a month until I took it home. As I said the only time I had a tank wipeout was when I ordered fish from a 'internet distributor' but maybe not one of the big 3. Nice article...
That’s a transshipped order. Many LFS don’t do this unless they have a big need for rare fish or a fish almost exclusively found in that region (large order). They’re cheaper for the fish but shipping is often high and needs to be picked up at the airport.

Most LFS source from wholesalers, at least predominantly. I have access to some transshippers as well although I haven’t used them yet. I’ve heard mixed reviews — some say it’s atrocious and some say they’d never do it any other way again. Not sure what to believe. I can’t get the assortment I want this way, id have to transship from 4 or 5 locations which would be exorbitantly expensive on the shipping and a real hassle to go to the airport. This is of course why wholesalers are in business — more availability and they do the transshipping to them, then distribute the fish out from there to LFS and Online orders for companies like live aquaria and fishy business aquatics, and a myriad of others.

I have to think transshipped would be better, as it’s again one fewer water system for them to be exposed to parasites, one less system to acclimate to. The increased shipping times are somewhat of a concern I suspect DOA would be higher.
 

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A couple of quick comments since I’m traveling today.
Europe requires wholesalers to disinfect their systems regularly so it can be done. European reefers are lucky that way.

I also know my LFS runs around 0.5ppm coppersafe in their non invert section. They didn’t post this until they started getting claims from people who’s fish died from Prime treatment. This has become a very common practice as LFS struggle to keep fish alive long enough to sell
 
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If you find a distributor in the US selling non-diseased fish right now please send me a PM and let me know who.
What does this mean? I'm not being sarcastic - but take this scenario.

I am just trying to use common sense. If I go to an LFS - and buy 5 fish - and they all die within 5 days of a disease - and then leave my tank fallow, etc - and it happens again - why would I go back to that LFS if they are selling diseased fish 'routinely'? Same thing if I order from an online distributor (this is what happened - and I dont order from them anymore). But - how are they staying in business if they are all selling diseased fish routinely?

The question - are you saying that lets say 99% of fish sold in LFS and distributors are 'diseased' or are you saying 5 percent are diseased - but they can./will easily infect your tank if not QTd properly.
 

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That’s a transshipped order. Many LFS don’t do this unless they have a big need for rare fish or a fish almost exclusively found in that region (large order). They’re cheaper for the fish but shipping is often high and needs to be picked up at the airport.

Most LFS source from wholesalers, at least predominantly. I have access to some transshippers as well although I haven’t used them yet. I’ve heard mixed reviews — some say it’s atrocious and some say they’d never do it any other way again. Not sure what to believe. I can’t get the assortment I want this way, id have to transship from 4 or 5 locations which would be exorbitantly expensive on the shipping and a real hassle to go to the airport. This is of course why wholesalers are in business — more availability and they do the transshipping to them, then distribute the fish out from there to LFS and Online orders for companies like live aquaria and fishy business aquatics, and a myriad of others.

I have to think transshipped would be better, as it’s again one fewer water system for them to be exposed to parasites, one less system to acclimate to. The increased shipping times are somewhat of a concern I suspect DOA would be higher.
That is what the LFS to which I go does (from what I understand).
 
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What does this mean? I'm not being sarcastic - but take this scenario.

I am just trying to use common sense. If I go to an LFS - and buy 5 fish - and they all die within 5 days of a disease - and then leave my tank fallow, etc - and it happens again - why would I go back to that LFS if they are selling diseased fish 'routinely'? Same thing if I order from an online distributor (this is what happened - and I dont order from them anymore). But - how are they staying in business if they are all selling diseased fish routinely?

The question - are you saying that lets say 99% of fish sold in LFS and distributors are 'diseased' or are you saying 5 percent are diseased - but they can./will easily infect your tank if not QTd properly.
I mean if anyone knows of a wholesaler that doesn’t sell diseased fish regularly right now, let me know.

I don’t buy from those LFS, hence why I’ve omitted them from the supply chain. IE I have it shipped directly from the source. The same source as most online retailers and LFS.

They stay in business because of economies of scale, price, and market share. Without better alternatives where do we go?

I have an arbitrary guess that at least 75% of fish have a parasite of some sort these days in the states. Arbitrary, I’ve collected no data other than observation and other users here. I actually suspect it’s higher.
 

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I also know my LFS runs around 0.5ppm coppersafe in their non invert section. They didn’t post this until they started getting claims from people who’s fish died from Prime treatment. This has become a very common practice as LFS struggle to keep fish alive long enough to sell
Interesting - The way I found out that an LFS near here was using copper was that he asked me the first time I bought fish whether I had inverts in my tank - when I said yes - he said - ok make sure you dont get any of the water this fish is in in your tank - as they are in therapeutic copper. I asked - oh do you do that all the time -he said for a month fish go into the copper side then are transferred over to the non-copper side. (whether this made sense from a 'scientific' point of view I dont know - but thats how they did it).
 
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That is what the LFS to which I go does (from what I understand).
We often said this to clients at the LFS I worked for (Petland) as well but we ordered from QM almost exclusively. SDC on occasion, and we transshipped twice in the two years I worked there, as I went to the airport to pick them up. Back then fish weren’t nearly as diseased (this is ten years ago) from wholesalers and the transshipped fish had higher DOA but were of similar health to these wholesalers. I believe one transshipment was from Maldives and the other was Hawaii but it’s been a long time. In both cases we had a customer with very specific fish needs and a high volume of fish and this made financial sense for us to order this way.
 

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