Banggai Cardinal

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I added a Banggai Cardinal to my tank 25g tank 6 days ago; it was purchased from my LFS and had been at the store for a couple of weeks. My tank has only been running for about 4-5 weeks.

Since adding to the tank it has acted normal; bonded very quick with my clown pair and stays near their corner of the tank. I feed mostly frozen, mysis/spirulina and brine, and he's been eating everyday. I noticed earlier today that he was sitting upright on the bottom of the tank; when I got closer to look he swam up into the middle of the tank but just wasn't acting normal. He wasn't breathing fast but was repeatedly opening and closing his mouth.

Came back to check on him about an hour later and he was lying on his side on the bottom of the tank. He is still breathing and will sporadically work to right himself and swim but it's almost like he's drunk and starts just randomly drifting until he lays on the bottom again. I've had freshwater fish with swim bladder issues exhibit a similar swimming pattern before.

Ammonia is 0 per API test kit and Seachem ammonia badge. I haven't had the chance to check any other parameters yet. Nitrates were 18.2 when I last checked on Sunday before a 25% water change. All other fish (clown pair and tailspot blenny) and a cleaner shrimp are all acting completely normal. I've just moved the cardinal to a small hospital tank but as I'm new to the saltwater side of the hobby unsure what next steps should be. Thanks!
 
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A couple of pictures. There’s no injuries or any obvious signs of disease.

He’s now alternating between laying on his side and being inverted on the bottom of the hospital tank. He’s breathing but it seems more labored. I’m starting to feel like this is a losing battle and euthanasia would be the most humane option.

Apologies for the poor pictures.

IMG_6473.jpeg

IMG_6476.jpeg
 
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Unfortunately he died already. It all happened so quickly... Even up to about noon today he seemed fine. It was around 2:30 when I first noticed him sitting on the bottom and not acting normal.

Found a post from @Jay Hemdal talking about Banggai Cardinal Iridovirus. I'm actually hoping this is what it was and there's nothing that could potentially effect other livestock. Again, all other fish, shrimp/inverts, and coral seem completely fine.

Anything I should do at this point other than keep an eye on the tank?
 

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Unfortunately he died already. It all happened so quickly... Even up to about noon today he seemed fine. It was around 2:30 when I first noticed him sitting on the bottom and not acting normal.

Found a post from @Jay Hemdal talking about Banggai Cardinal Iridovirus. I'm actually hoping this is what it was and there's nothing that could potentially effect other livestock. Again, all other fish, shrimp/inverts, and coral seem completely fine.

Anything I should do at this point other than keep an eye on the tank?

Was this a newly acquired, wild caught fish? If so, the virus is very likely. It is not contagious to most other species - as I recollect, batfish also get this virus, but most other aquarium fish do not.

Jay
 
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Was this a newly acquired, wild caught fish? If so, the virus is very likely. It is not contagious to most other species - as I recollect, batfish also get this virus, but most other aquarium fish do not.

Jay
Thanks. Yes, newly acquired 6 days ago. He had been at my LFS for about 2 weeks. I'm unsure of his origin but would imagine it was wild caught though he was fairly small.
 

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Agree on the virus. Like the blonde naso tangs, they appear table at the LFS and after stress of netting seems to gradually weaken.
How did you acclimate it to tank and for how long?
 

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Did a drip acclimation over about an hour. SG of 1.024 to 1.026.
I dont think its an acclimation issue but often failure to float bag and match temperature as well as equalize salinity will lower the pH of the water in the bag, which in turn, makes residual ammonia toxic to the fish
 
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I dont think its an acclimation issue but often failure to float bag and match temperature as well as equalize salinity will lower the pH of the water in the bag, which in turn, makes residual ammonia toxic to the fish
Wouldn’t something acclimation related show up within a day or so? It’s a new fish but it’s been 6 days.
 

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I dont think its an acclimation issue but often failure to float bag and match temperature as well as equalize salinity will lower the pH of the water in the bag, which in turn, makes residual ammonia toxic to the fish
Correct me if I'm wrong, but this can be avoided by using Prime or something similar right after opening the bag to neutralise the ammonia while still allowing for a slow acclimation process.

However, given that he picked up Cardinal at the local LFS unless he was travelling a great length of time, I doubt enough ammonia could build up to the point it becomes toxic during the acclimation process.
 

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but this can be avoided by using Prime or something similar right after opening the bag to neutralise the ammonia while still allowing for a slow acclimation process.

However, given that he picked up Cardinal at the local LFS unless he was travelling a great length of time, I doubt enough ammonia could build up to the point it becomes toxic during the acclimation process.
As mentioned, i dont think its an acclimation issue but rather a chronic issue with Bangaii in general. Prime is not what persons think as is merely a water conditioner and does not remove ammonia nor does what bottle claims. Best product is amquel for water
Most effective is to prepare a bucket and empty contents and start adding tank water to it matching salinity and even Ph at the end before transfer to display tank
 

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but this can be avoided by using Prime or something similar right after opening the bag to neutralise the ammonia while still allowing for a slow acclimation process.
By all accounts I can find, no, Prime and other conditioners will not actually detoxify ammonia (Randy Holmes-Farley has written about this a few times on the forum now, and a few others have done some testing on the topic too):
Like the claims about Prine, I am not convinced it does anything useful.
I’d love to know if it does anything useful. Don’t be fooled into assuming all hobby products do what they claim. Some some do not.
 
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By all accounts I can find, no, Prime and other conditioners will not actually detoxify ammonia (Randy Holmes-Farley has written about this a few times on the forum now, and a few others have done some testing on the topic too):


My understanding is that Prime "detoxifies" ammonia by converting it to ammonium which is much less harmful giving system time to process it. I haven't read through the attached links yet but don't most test kits measure total ammonia which would make it difficult to analyze?

Coming from the fresh side I've used Prime extensively, mostly for de-chlorinating properties, and while I've not conducted any studies I've got a lot of anecdotal evidence of it being beneficial in an emergency. Very interesting topic.

I've not used Prime for my saltwater tank and don't really see a need to though I guess if I had an ammonia emergency I would probably reach for it in combination with water changes.
 

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Unfortunately he died already. It all happened so quickly... Even up to about noon today he seemed fine. It was around 2:30 when I first noticed him sitting on the bottom and not acting normal.

Found a post from @Jay Hemdal talking about Banggai Cardinal Iridovirus. I'm actually hoping this is what it was and there's nothing that could potentially effect other livestock. Again, all other fish, shrimp/inverts, and coral seem completely fine.

Anything I should do at this point other than keep an eye on the tank?
I would keep an eye on your tank - especially if you didn't Quarantine the fish. It could be the virus - but - I suppose it could also be velvet or some other issue. It's good that the rest of the fish are doing well. If your invertebrates are doing well it's not as likely to be something chemical. Were there any issues with acclimation?
 

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My understanding is that Prime "detoxifies" ammonia by converting it to ammonium which is much less harmful giving system time to process it. I haven't read through the attached links yet but don't most test kits measure total ammonia which would make it difficult to analyze?
The links talk about that (posts 9, 13, and 14 in the second thread are particularly good); and yes, most test kits - including the one recommended by Seachem - can't read any difference between water with prime and water without (post 14 discusses this too).

As mentioned in the threads, probably the best way to tell for sure would be to run a controlled ammonia toxicity test using live specimens, but that runs into some ethical concerns, and to my knowledge hasn't been attempted yet (someone on the Humblefish forums technically ran a semi-serious test, but the shrimp were fine in all three conditions, so it's pretty safe to say they didn't add enough ammonia to begin with for a toxicity test).
 
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I would keep an eye on your tank - especially if you didn't Quarantine the fish. It could be the virus - but - I suppose it could also be velvet or some other issue. It's good that the rest of the fish are doing well. If your invertebrates are doing well it's not as likely to be something chemical. Were there any issues with acclimation?
I will definitely be keeping a close eye on things. There were no issues with acclimation and nothing abnormal until yesterday afternoon when he went from seemingly fine to dead in just a few hours. Rest of the tank is still doing fine including inverts. My cleaner shrimp is as active as ever and molted yesterday.
 

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Wouldn’t something acclimation related show up within a day or so? It’s a new fish but it’s been 6 days.
Acclimation issues would be present from day one. If a fish does well at first but then develops issues, it was NOT from acclimation problems.

Jay
 

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A couple of pictures. There’s no injuries or any obvious signs of disease.

He’s now alternating between laying on his side and being inverted on the bottom of the hospital tank. He’s breathing but it seems more labored. I’m starting to feel like this is a losing battle and euthanasia would be the most humane option.

Apologies for the poor pictures.

IMG_6473.jpeg

IMG_6476.jpeg
I know you said it was eating but it does look really thin.
 

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