Diagnosing Gill flukes in aquarium

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dach

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That’s what I use, but to be honest, it is slow to work (but it is very mild). You’ll want to ramp up to a full dose right away. Sometimes, people will do a FW dip on the fish to buy some time for the copper to work.
Jay
Okay, i only have a 5 gallon bucket available right now and have a really busy day at work tomorrow, do you think i can start treatment in the bucket with just an airstone and heater? I don’t have a sponge filter handy. I cleaned out the bucket with hot water. I only have 5 gallons of saltwater handy as well.
 
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Jay Hemdal

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Okay, i only have a 5 gallon bucket available right now and have a really busy day at work tomorrow, do you think i can start treatment in the bucket with just an airstone and heater? I don’t have a sponge filter handy. I cleaned out the bucket with hot water. I only have 5 gallons of saltwater handy as well.
You can start a copper treatment in a bucket like that, but the ammonia level is going to spike after about 24 hours, requiring total water changes and redosing of the copper.

Did you do the FW dip? That will buy you some time.

Jay
 
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You can start a copper treatment in a bucket like that, but the ammonia level is going to spike after about 24 hours, requiring total water changes and redosing of the copper.

Did you do the FW dip? That will buy you some time.

Jay
Did the freshwater dip just now, 3-4 mins in temp acclimated RODi. Put back in display for now but will move to copper bucket after work. I’m also going to my LFS to get a copper test kit and a sponge filter. Hopefully this allows me to do less than daily water changes, but I’ll make that decision based on ammonia level. Does this sound right?
 

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Did the freshwater dip just now, 3-4 mins in temp acclimated RODi. Put back in display for now but will move to copper bucket after work. I’m also going to my LFS to get a copper test kit and a sponge filter. Hopefully this allows me to do less than daily water changes, but I’ll make that decision based on ammonia level. Does this sound right?
Yes, and buy some bacteria in a bottle if you can to help seed the sponge filter. You can then use the seeded sponge filter when you set up the QT.
Jay
 
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Yes, and buy some bacteria in a bottle if you can to help seed the sponge filter. You can then use the seeded sponge filter when you set up the QT.
Jay
Thanks for all of your help so far. I got a sponge filter and seeded the qt bucket with bacteria. I also took a bio cube from my tank and placed it in the qt tank to hopefully establish the bacteria. I added the recommended coppersafe dose and found it was reading at only 0.25-0.5 ppm copper. The fw dip may have been effective for the clown, but she wasn’t the worst one affected i don’t think. My blenny seems miserable. I want to dip him but i can’t catch him and don’t want to stress him too much. Should I move the clown now at the lower copper concentration and add more slowly to increase the concentration to the therapeutic level or just add more copper safe now until my test shows 2ppm? so far the yasha goby seems fine but i only see him at feeding time. Everyone is eating despite their ailments.

i also threw a piece of acrylic over the top of the tank to ensure no jumping.
 
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Thanks for all of your help so far. I got a sponge filter and seeded the qt bucket with bacteria. I also took a bio cube from my tank and placed it in the qt tank to hopefully establish the bacteria. I added the recommended coppersafe dose and found it was reading at only 0.25-0.5 ppm copper. The fw dip may have been effective for the clown, but she wasn’t the worst one affected i don’t think. My blenny seems miserable. I want to dip him but i can’t catch him and don’t want to stress him too much. Should I move the clown now at the lower copper concentration and add more slowly to increase the concentration to the therapeutic level or just add more copper safe now until my test shows 2ppm? so far the yasha goby seems fine but i only see him at feeding time. Everyone is eating despite their ailments.

i also threw a piece of acrylic over the top of the tank to ensure no jumping.

There is something wrong with your copper dose. Coppersafe should test out at 2.5 at a full dose. Cupramine tests at 0.50. The problem is, I can't tell you what the problem is:

1) Volume miscalculation of the tank
2) Volume miscalculation of the copper
3) Defective test kit or test measuring method
4) Defective copper solution

Until you figure out what the problem is, raising the apparent copper dose could be deadly.

Jay
 
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There is something wrong with your copper dose. Coppersafe should test out at 2.5 at a full dose. Cupramine tests at 0.50. The problem is, I can't tell you what the problem is:

1) Volume miscalculation of the tank
2) Volume miscalculation of the copper
3) Defective test kit or test measuring method
4) Defective copper solution

Until you figure out what the problem is, raising the apparent copper dose could be deadly.

Jay
Thanks, I’m just gonna get another copper test kit and see if results are the same, if it is I’ll raise copper to 2ppm then move fish into it. Took another video of the blenny. There’s one point in which you can see some spots on his fins, but they aren’t extremely numerous… does this mean ich vs velvet? I know the copper treatment part is the same and dipping. I think he may also have worms cause he has stringy poop and a bloated belly. this has been a problem i was dealing with before the ich/velvet
 

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Thanks, I’m just gonna get another copper test kit and see if results are the same, if it is I’ll raise copper to 2ppm then move fish into it. Took another video of the blenny. There’s one point in which you can see some spots on his fins, but they aren’t extremely numerous… does this mean ich vs velvet? I know the copper treatment part is the same and dipping. I think he may also have worms cause he has stringy poop and a bloated belly. this has been a problem i was dealing with before the ich/velvet

I see a possible light case of ich on the blenny. The feces are green, and the bloating is related to that, eating lots of vegetable matter. That shouldn't be an issue for a species that is an omnivore, bordering on a herbivore.

Here is another way to figure out the copper issue: mix up five gallons of seawater, dose it for exactly five gallons worth of copper, aerate it for an hour then test it. If you get a low reading it is either your test kit or the copper. If you get a good reading, your initial measurement was off. Then, you can use that water in your QT, so as not to waste it.

Remember that a full dose of coppersafe is 2.5 ppm

Jay
 
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I see a possible light case of ich on the blenny. The feces are green, and the bloating is related to that, eating lots of vegetable matter. That shouldn't be an issue for a species that is an omnivore, bordering on a herbivore.

Here is another way to figure out the copper issue: mix up five gallons of seawater, dose it for exactly five gallons worth of copper, aerate it for an hour then test it. If you get a low reading it is either your test kit or the copper. If you get a good reading, your initial measurement was off. Then, you can use that water in your QT, so as not to waste it.

Remember that a full dose of coppersafe is 2.5 ppm

Jay
Thanks! I’ll give it a shot, trying to get the fish in there ASAP. You think it’s ich for sure vs velvet? My fish are all eating now, clown seems to be feeling better after the dip. Ich would make me feel better as it seems less lethal and i have more room for error. I’ve heard that if you can count the spots it’s ich vs too many to count it’s velvet. In the case of my fish, some of my fish died before i even saw spots, making me think velvet.

I’m also going to build a trap for the blenny cause he is too quick for me to catch and will hide in the rockwork
 

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Thanks! I’ll give it a shot, trying to get the fish in there ASAP. You think it’s ich for sure vs velvet? My fish are all eating now, clown seems to be feeling better after the dip. Ich would make me feel better as it seems less lethal and i have more room for error. I’ve heard that if you can count the spots it’s ich vs too many to count it’s velvet. In the case of my fish, some of my fish died before i even saw spots, making me think velvet.

I’m also going to build a trap for the blenny cause he is too quick for me to catch and will hide in the rockwork
With velvet, the first symptom you'll see is rapid breathing. Then, the fish will stop feeding and some may hover into water current. Spots show up at the very end, if you see them at all.

Jay
 
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With velvet, the first symptom you'll see is rapid breathing. Then, the fish will stop feeding and some may hover into water current. Spots show up at the very end, if you see them at all.

Jay
Seems like it matches velvet by that description, noticed the breathing before the spots. Really stupid question, for the API copper test, you view it from the top of the tube and not thru the side?
 

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I just went through this and with Jay’s guidance I was able to save some fish.I really would recommend you get a more accurate test kit. The API was giving me readings in excess of 2 and when I tested with Hanna I got 1.65
Plus no guessing
Good luck with this.
It can be very frustrating.
 

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Seems like it matches velvet by that description, noticed the breathing before the spots. Really stupid question, for the API copper test, you view it from the top of the tube and not thru the side?
I don't usually use the API kit, but when I have, I viewed through the side. I could never get the color development to line up with the chart though.

Jay
 
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I don't usually use the API kit, but when I have, I viewed through the side. I could never get the color development to line up with the chart though.

Jay
I see that BRS recommends viewing through the top. This made the copper dose make some sense for me. I’m still investing in a Hanna checker for the duration of the treatment
 
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I just wanted to tie up this thread. Unfortunately i lost my other clownfish in the 5g copper treatment bucket. I suspect ammonia, and that my tests were failing me as they kept reading 0, but the fish had visible red/black spots on the white part of its skin, suggesting ammonia burn to me. The other option would be that the copper level was not in the therapeutic range and the velvet got it. I checked with the Hanna checker i got yesterday and my copper was at 1.86ppm. I added a few more drops this morning and read at 2.12 ppm. This afternoon i found the fish gasping for air at the surface. I moved it to a container and began to add new saltwater to the container dropwise to dilute both the copper and the ammonia to try to save the fish. Unfortunately the fish was too stressed or too much damage had already been done and she passed.

Jay, I just wanted to thank you for all of the support you have provided me in trying to treat this velvet outbreak. While I was unable to save any of my affected fish (yasha goby seems unaffected, not sure if it’s because he lives in sand or has a pistol shrimp to clean him), you gave me direction and gave great information that gave my fish a fighting chance. I hope that others in the future may be able to use this case as a reference for a differential diagnosis of velvet from gill flukes and ich and can take action earlier to hopefully save some fish. I may follow up on this with more test results on the water to see if i can identify a true cause of the loss of my last clownfish.
 
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