Healthy Fish: What's the secret to success?

BRS

How healthy are your fish?

  • All of them are Healthy

    Votes: 378 80.6%
  • Most of them are Healthy

    Votes: 63 13.4%
  • Half of them are Healthy

    Votes: 3 0.6%
  • Most are Unhealthy

    Votes: 4 0.9%
  • All are Unhealthy

    Votes: 5 1.1%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 16 3.4%

  • Total voters
    469

revhtree

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Today let's talk about our little finned friends, our reef partners, our little fishy buddies and how to keep them healthy! Obviously getting a well collected and treated fish is probably the best and number one way to have healthy fish but let's skip that and go straight to the fish you already have. They are already caught, already bred, already shipped, already acclimated, already quarantined, etc. NOW WHAT? Let's talk about it!

1. Once a fish is in your aquarium what are some of the best ways to keep them healthy and thriving? List what you do to ensure success!

2. What percentage of your fish do you consider to be healthy?


image via @scchase
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Why-Me

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#honestyinreefing
I chose other again today.
The fish in my office tank are all healthy!
BUT my Living Room DT:
I recently added 6 chromis from LA DD and they had Ich and are slowly wiping my tank, I have 3 fish left.
Will be going fallow and will only purchase fully QT'd fish from Dr Reef, TSM Aquatics and New Wave Aquaria.
This is directly my fault, not trying to dump on LA DD; please QT your fish and/or buy QT'd from reputable sources.
I learned the hard way, my daughter is also upset, that breaks my heart the most, letting her down.

As for health.
I do use Garlic Power, Selcon and high quality food from local grocer and frozen from BRS.
DIY my own fish food plus supplements.
 
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WVNed

The fish are staring at me with hungry eyes.
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a tank that's not dirty but not too clean either
a lot of flow
make sure everyone gets stuff to eat that is appropriate for them
stable parameters
avoid feeding stuff with thiaminase containing foods
as much as we all like a lot of fish marine tanks simply cant hold anywhere close to the number that a FW tank can.
have an appropriate size tank for what your fish will grow up to be. Not the size it is when you buy it.

 

Mical

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When my "better half" read this she laughed... We have a Foxface which is about 5 years old, 6" long and over an inch thick, almost to the point of being obese...lol

Both tanks get Hikari "S" and algae pellets twice daily, nori and shrimp/littleneck clams (for Nems) on the weekends
 

brandon429

why did you put a reef in that
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step one

find out what zoos are doing

repeat that approach
 

Dragonsreef

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I feel it starts with quarantine, but aside from that multiple feedings a day and a good amount of flow. Highly oxygenated water goes a long way for all the tank inhabitants health.

Make sure you know the environment that your fish are coming from and try to replicate that at much as possible. Make sure to feed a variety of foods and try to match their natural diets.
 

Azedenkae

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So what I often do is set up the tank the way I want to maintain and work with it, and then bring in live stock and essentially let them try to adapt to the tank conditions, rather than vice versa.

I find that there is enough variety in how well different organisms do under different conditions, even individuals of the same species, that trying to cater to everyone may just make everything all too delicate and a 'balance' that the moment it breaks just slightly, cascades into a tank crash. This apply to both my freshwater and saltwater tanks that I have kept.

So I guess my method is... acclimatize and everything as usual, but once the live stock is in, they either live and as such thrive, or die.

To clarify, this does not mean I would have drastically bad parameters or anything like that, but more so keep it within a 'good' range and hope the live stock works through. So I would not even try to keep acros and so on in my current main tank for example, because I straight up know they won't survive. But if fish and stuff are supposed to do great in my tank and they don't, I don't change everything in the hopes that it would survive. I'd try to see what I can do, but never sacrifice the overall tank's health for a few specimens.

Survival of the fittest I suppose. That leaves whatever remains behind to be very healthy, and I can essentially do just whatever to the tank and they are fine.

Like the other day when I went on holidays for ten days, came back to see my back chamber of the AIO blowing bubbles heavily into the tank, algae was everywhere, the autofeeder overfed the fish, etc. Everything was still super chill. Straight up topped up water, probably decreased salinity quite a bit quite quickly. Pulled out all the algae, stirred up so much sand and detritus, everyone was chill throughout. So yah.

Although with that said, the other day I tried to increase salinity to be more in line with what is often suggested (1.025), and over the course of a week I increased salinity by 0.001 and three corals died once it hit 1.023. So decreased salinity again and things were fine. I guess maybeeee they are robust now in some ways, but not in every way.
 

Brew12

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I'll approach it as what mistakes people make when trying to keep healthy fish.

The first mistake starts with our stocking lists. We put fish together in ways that cause them stress. This stress breaks down their immune system. For example, you can put multiple Acanthurus Tangs together in a 240g system. This doesn't mean you should. It has a chance of working out just fine. What is more likely is that they won't directly attack each other but they will live together under stress which leaves them exposed to disease.
The Chromis in @Why-Me (sorry man, you know I love you!) are another example of this. If there isn't a different dominant fish to cause them to shoal and work together, they will turn and kill the weakest off one by one until there is one left. If these weakened fish are exposed to a parasite like Ich the parasite will feed off it and it's population will grow. This new higher parasite burden can overwhelm previously healthy fish. This gives the parasites more susceptible hosts allowing their population to increase even further.
Feeding is another area that I feel could improvement. The obvious one is using high quality foods. I also cringe when I hear about people adjusting their feeding because of their nitrate levels. We should be feeding our fish what they need to be healthy. Some fish need to be fed multiple times a day. If we cut back to feeding every other day because of nutrient issues our fish will not be healthy. Like in the above example, even a single fish being underfed can result in a parasite explosion that can overwhelm the fish who are adequately fed.
 

Calm Blue Ocean

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My fish seem healthy. I put "Other" though because I just lost a goby that I'd had for over a year and a half and I really don't know what happened to him. He was fine, and then within hours he was gone. I miss that little dude.

As far as keeping everyone healthy, I've been buying all of my inverts and fish pre-quarantined. I give a lot of thought toward how the fish will interact with each other and possible territories. And then I feed the heck out of them and care for their home the best I can.
 

NeonRabbit221B

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Live and freshly frozen food on a routine basis. I have also grown to love my mandarin feeder which helps disperse BBS shrimp throughout the day to supplement feedings. I think variety helps a good amount too, I have 5-6 foods in rotation to target specific fish's needs.
 

Cory

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Ill say its three things to make a stable healthy fishy table:

Feed lots multiple times a day!
Maintian good water quality!
Do not have any bully fish!
 

Monte26

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Good nutrition needs to be talked about more in this hobby. I feel that we could all have so much more success with our fish by feeding smaller amounts of food at a time, feeding more frequently, and most importantly, feeding a variety of foods.

On top of that, not all foods are the same. Have you looked at the nutritional content of frozen Hikari mysis vs frozen PE mysis? Very big difference in protein and fat content!
 

Auquanut

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I was going to answer this, but @WVNed pretty well nailed it. I will say that all of my fish seem fat dumb and happy though. I haven't lost a fish in a very long time.
 

MiniCoco

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#honestyinreefing
I chose other again today.
The fish in my office tank are all healthy!
BUT my Living Room DT:
I recently added 6 chromis from LA DD and they had Ich and are slowly wiping my tank, I have 3 fish left.
Will be going fallow and will only purchase fully QT'd fish from Dr Reef, TSM Aquatics and New Wave Aquaria.
This is directly my fault, not trying to dump on LA DD; please QT your fish and/or buy QT'd from reputable sources.
I learned the hard way, my daughter is also upset, that breaks my heart the most, letting her down.

As for health.
I do use Garlic Power, Selcon and high quality food from local grocer and frozen from BRS.
DIY my own fish food plus supplements.
I am sorry to hear of your loss, must be painful.
 

zoa what

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The #1 path to healthy fish is to get over the thought

"More food will make my fish grow bigger"

You aren't feeding a 14yr old boy that plays two sports!

You are feeding a fish that has a stomach the size of your pinky fingernail... and in most cases SMALLER

You feed fish twice a day (am/pm) the amt of food they can consume in 5min or less.

After feeding the tank, if food is still present after 5mins.... tooooo much bc you are poisoning your tank.

Quit feeding your fish like they're 6ft 1000lbs sharks


.
 
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Conrad Noto

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Today let's talk about our little finned friends, our reef partners, our little fishy buddies and how to keep them healthy! Obviously getting a well collected and treated fish is probably the best and number one way to have healthy fish but let's skip that and go straight to the fish you already have. They are already caught, already bred, already shipped, already acclimated, already quarantined, etc. NOW WHAT? Let's talk about it!

1. Once a fish is in your aquarium what are some of the best ways to keep them healthy and thriving? List what you do to ensure success!

2. What percentage of your fish do you consider to be healthy?


image via @scchase
OIP00032.jpg
My fish are all great since my major Marine Velvet disaster 2 1/2 years ago. I lost half my fish, all my inverts had to copper nuke my tank, killed dried and bleached 400lbs of live rock. Then used 1/2 of it as base rock to re-set up. I bought 200lbs new rock to top off which I let go fallow 60 days in baby pool. I no longer add things directly to my display. Corals go to my 20gal for 60 days, same with inverts. Fish get full copper treatment and dewormed before going into display. After I watched my Beautiful Emperor Angel and Blonde Naso literally peel before my eyes and having to put them down I don't risk it. My Blue Hippo 5yr old lived but has scars, my Koran lived will be 10 yrs in Nov., but has a cataract in one eye from secondary infection. I lost so many fish. I added a Toadstool and bam, 48 hrs later every fish had velvet except strangely my Blue Hippo he didn't get it till the very end. Very hard to treat when you have many large fish in large display with corals/inverts. My Koran is now about 14'' my QT is a 20 gal, no way to get every fish in there , just few small guys. Sometimes this hobby sucks. I'm very careful now.
 
BRS

Would you consider your tank to be balanced or lopsided when it comes to coral?

  • Balanced Mixed Reef

    Votes: 98 33.3%
  • Lopsided SPS

    Votes: 57 19.4%
  • Lopsided LPS

    Votes: 66 22.4%
  • Lopsided Zoanthids

    Votes: 20 6.8%
  • Lopdsided Soft Corals

    Votes: 42 14.3%
  • Lopsided NPS

    Votes: 1 0.3%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 10 3.4%
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