Does quarantine help or really hurt the fish?

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jaganshi066

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Quarantine process for fish works definitely if done properly. it should follow a careful selection process and then followed by good husbandry practices.
What is proper? What parasites/bacteria/diseases does the fosh really have? Who knows other than what they can see and even internally I don’t think it’s possible to treat everything. Again just feel bad for the fish but I appreciate everyone’s input. I think I’ll just stop quarantining when I get a fish
 

Sam816

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What is proper? What parasites/bacteria/diseases does the fosh really have? Who knows other than what they can see and even internally I don’t think it’s possible to treat everything. Again just feel bad for the fish but I appreciate everyone’s input. I think I’ll just stop quarantining when I get a fish

'Proper' quarantine means not to bombard fish with medicine asa you bring it home.
design a QT with the fish in mind. get it to eat like a hog first. then start with meds or TTM. have a wifi cam to keep an eye on the fish. don't keep checking on it in person every 10 minutes. have a molly or two that can act as dither fish and encourage eating. finally, when you commit to a QT process follow it religiously. All my fish are in QT right now cause i cut short my coral beauty's copper treatment after 2 weeks.
 
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ca1ore

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I quarantine all my fish and I’m starting to think it might actually hurt them more due to stress than help them. I never lost a fish aside one recent loss since I’ve been quarantining my fish, but is it better to treat the disease/bacteria when it happens than to be proactive and prevent it all together? I noticed when treating my fish they all seem pretty calm, even the wrasses in copper which came to my surprise, but how much does the copper/prazipro or other medications actually hurt them? In terms of factors that could affect their life span, dosing so many different medications that these fish don’t have and aren’t used to and don’t have in the ocean. I understand there are counter arguments in regards to the ocean is much more vast than our tanks so ich isn’t an issue but please any helpful and not negative feedback would be greatly appreciated
A hay bale of thoughts (random and not all of the same quality) .....

QT is simply the process of isolating a new fish from the established population. This, in and of itself, is not harmful to the fish. Whether one chooses to observe in QT as opposed to prophylactically medicate is a different question. I do not personally agree with the recent trend (last 5 years?) of blasting new fish with a cocktail of meds as I do think it is injurious to the fish; and in ways that may not be immediately obvious. Fish may not die, but it also may not live as long; so I don't do it.

I keep a smaller 29 gallon tank with live rock, sand, skimmer, a good light .... well, you get the idea. New fish go into this tank for initial observation. If, and only if, disease symptoms present then I remove it to a hospital tank. Even though there are anecdotal reports/opinions on the higher amount of disease in the ornamental fish supply chain, very few of the new fish I buy actually end up needing any kind of treatment. I haven't had to treat for ich in a couple of years, and have not had velvet for over a decade. Why is this? No special magic chez moi, so perhaps we don't give fish enough 'credit' for their immune systems.

My approach requires patience because a new fish will spend at least a couple of months in the 29. If observable disease were to occur, then it would have to remain fallow for the requisite period of time. Both necessitate patience :). I will not put a new fish directly into my display, mostly for disease but also because running the tang gang gauntlet is not conducive to getting a new fish to eat.

I also run an oversized UV on my system. Not because I think it will eliminate parasites, but because it will (may) help to reduce parasite pressure (rather like ocean dilution) should anything slip through.
 
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jaganshi066

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A hay bale of thoughts (random and not all of the same quality) .....

QT is simply the process of isolating a new fish from the established population. This, in and of itself, is not harmful to the fish. Whether one chooses to observe in QT as opposed to prophylactically medicate is a different question. I do not personally agree with the recent trend (last 5 years?) of blasting new fish with a cocktail of meds as I do think it is injurious to the fish; and in ways that may not be immediately obvious. Fish may not die, but it also may not live as long; so I don't do it.

I keep a smaller 29 gallon tank with live rock, sand, skimmer, a good light .... well, you get the idea. New fish go into this tank for initial observation. If, and only if, disease symptoms present then I remove it to a hospital tank. Even though there are anecdotal reports/opinions on the higher amount of disease in the ornamental fish supply chain, very few of the new fish I buy actually end up needing any kind of treatment. I haven't had to treat for ich in a couple of years, and have not had velvet for over a decade. Why is this? No special magic chez moi, so perhaps we don't give fish enough 'credit' for their immune systems.

My approach requires patience because a new fish will spend at least a couple of months in the 29. If observable disease were to occur, then it would have to remain fallow for the requisite period of time. Both necessitate patience :). I will not put a new fish directly into my display, mostly for disease but also because running the tang gang gauntlet is not conducive to getting a new fish to eat.

I also run an oversized UV on my system. Not because I think it will eliminate parasites, but because it will (may) help to reduce parasite pressure (rather like ocean dilution) should anything slip through.
Thank you for this, very helpful and now I’m going to take your advice and set up another tank, probably an all in one 20 gallon and just observe them without medicating cause I felt really bad medicating every fish. Thank you so much!!!
 

Hugh Mann

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A good bit of information here, and what I add is of course, my own personal opinion on the subject.

Quarantining fish, and using meds sucks for the fish. It's stressful, and yes, sometimes the fish can die. It's entirely possible the fish was too far gone by the time it got there, ammonia, or improper use of meds.

However, in the absolute long term, it is much better not only for the fish, but for all your livestock to quarantine. There's so many nasty pathogens and parasites out there that if you don't try and prevent them, will devastate your tank. That being said, you really have to pick your protocol to suit each individual fish, unfortunately one procedure doesn't suit all animals.
 

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Tamberav

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I used to do observation but it is not a guarantee at all and things do sneak though. I didn't like treating fish with harsh meds.


I now do hybrid TTM which limits meds they are exposed to and it has been the best of both worlds for me. The only fish I think stress too much are fairy wrasse, they are jumpy little ****ers prone to spinal injuries and just freaking out in QT tanks. Leopards wrasse and such are no problem though and fish like clowns and Tangs are a breeze.
 
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Ive lost plenty of fish from qt and from not qt but ive never lost a whole tank of fish from qt a new arrival. Im on the side of being safe rather than sorry. I have ick in my display and its not easy to deal with in a 6 foot long 150 i could've saved alot of trouble with proper qt and profilactic treatment. I would've been on the other side before that incident.
 

mmorriso

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Having a quarantine / hospital / kindergarten tank can be very useful.

What mostly hurts fish with regards to quarantine tanks is:

- Putting them into un-established or newly established quarantine tanks which cannot adequately process waste matter
- Preventative / pre-emptive medication of fish, especially with treatments like copper

Quarantine tanks can be very helpful in:

- Acclimating newly caught fish to aquarium life
- Observing fish for any parasites or other issues in an environment in which treatment can be easily administered if required
- Ensuring fish are eating the food you regularly serve your aquarium

Some people have very different ideas as to what a quarantine tank is. For me, it is a 4 foot tank in my garage that has been running for as long as my display tank. There is no live rock or non-fish livestock, but there is plenty of sponge, bacteria, algae and importantly, a large number of hiding places. I also keep the light very low and the salinity below what would be ideal for a display tank with coral.

I generally put newly purchased fish in my "quarantine" tank, just to observe them and make sure they're travelling OK. I leave them there for about a month, without any treatment unless I see indications of an issue. After which, I transfer to my DT. I have enjoyed a lot of success with this method, but you should note that I don't practice ich eradication, although I will treat a fish for it if observed within quarantine. I don't quarantine corals, so I assume ich is within my system.
 
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I'm new to reefing and had a fish die of brook within 24hrs of adding it to my brand new 40g. Did a ton of digging and reading of different build threads and ultimately decided on setting up a 20L (observation tank) for new fish and will only treat if they show symptoms there. This batch of fish thankfully did not have brook only flooks so I treated with prazi pro in the observation tank which didn't require me to place them in my 10g sterile hospital tank. Planning on adding coral I find or trade in there I don't want in my DT too. This method allows me to have fun and relax (impulse buy every now and then) while also taking it slow and being careful. I'm okay if my observation tank has to fallow, it's only for fish to pass through anway. As long as my DT can be relatively risk free I'll be happy. I gathered treatment all known fish disease this weekend to have on hand. No sense having all this knowledge and not applying it. Plan is to process fish and potentially coral in groups to limit disease and increase observation time (idk what is recommended, I'm doing 6-8 weeks)

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mmorriso

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That's a good job. In case you ever need to medicate, note that sand can absorb medications like copper from the water, so make sure you regularly check your levels and expect them to drop as the sand uptakes the medication.

I prefer sand in Tupperware that I can introduce and remove as required.
 

Paul B

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If you think that quarantining is somehow meant to be a good thing for the fish being quarantined, then I am unsure if you understand the purpose of quarantining. You might want to read up some more on the topic.
Thank you, Maybe I will do that.

I'm done. Have a great day and good luck. :cool:
 

Susan Edwards

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I once lost 9 out of 13 fish to velvet. My fault as I was new and added too many fish at once. I haven't had any issues since, even not doing a QT. I now have a red sea 40 gal set up as observation. I have 3 rocks or so, and 2 have huge leathers that I didn't want in my big tank. A very thin layer of sand for the cuc which is very slim right now.

I also have a clown in there. I had 3, and he ended up in the overflow for 6 months. So my plan is to get alother clown, and use this tank for observing new fish. Clowns have good slime coats and one of the fish to survive the velvet I think was a clown.

If I have to treat, I'll remove the rock without any coral on it. I'll also plan that those rocks can never go into the main tank.

I have lost more fish from doing QT, even just observation. But I'm willing to do a humane observation for a month or so which I think gets them destressed and healthy and eating. I may even keep a couple of small damsels in with the clowns after I get some new fish as my tank is prob. close to full
 
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