Is this early ich?

chadfish

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I went on a short vacation to find my nutrient levels elevated
NO3: 20ppm
Phos: 5ppm

My firefish was noticeably scratching on the sand. I think I see three little white spots on his side.

is this ich? Or am I being paranoid?

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Jay Hemdal

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How long since you last added a fish to the tank?

It looks too diffuse to be ich, but it could be. Possibly skin discoloration from flukes, but not a very heavy infection (yet). Any spots on the other side of the fish?

You should probably wait to see how it develops, or if it goes away. For flukes, you would be able to treat with Prazipro. If it is ich, the spots will likely go away in a few days, then more of them will show up in new locations, including the fins. If they look like distinct grains of salt, that is more likely ich.

Jay
 

Hincapiej4

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How long since you last added a fish to the tank?

It looks too diffuse to be ich, but it could be. Possibly skin discoloration from flukes, but not a very heavy infection (yet). Any spots on the other side of the fish?

You should probably wait to see how it develops, or if it goes away. For flukes, you would be able to treat with Prazipro. If it is ich, the spots will likely go away in a few days, then more of them will show up in new locations, including the fins. If they look like distinct grains of salt, that is more likely ich.

Jay

Think a fresh water dip would help or too early to catch anything?
 
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lkc

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Looks like crypt and you'll have to remove it and start whatever treatment you decide on.
Freshwater dip does nothing for encysted parasites like ich.
Plus, tank needs to remain fallow for 78 days.....get ready for the biggest PIA in your reefing journey.
 

Jay Hemdal

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Think a fresh water dip would help or too early to catch anything?
If it’s gyrodactylus flukes, they aren’t going to show up in a dip without a microscope, and fire fish don’t get Neobenedenia that shows up so well in dips. Plus fire fish are tough to catch for dips (grin).
Jay
 

Hincapiej4

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Looks like crypt and you'll have to remove it and start whatever treatment you decide on.
Freshwater dip does nothing for encysted parasites like ich.
Plus, tank needs to remain fallow for 78 days.....get ready for the biggest PIA in your reefing journey.
If it's flukes, and looks like a certain type by what Jay said, it would help. But looks like in this case, it probably won't help.


Op, might just want to start treatmeant lol
 
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chadfish

chadfish

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Looks like crypt and you'll have to remove it and start whatever treatment you decide on.
Freshwater dip does nothing for encysted parasites like ich.
Plus, tank needs to remain fallow for 78 days.....get ready for the biggest PIA in your reefing journey.
I’m letting this play out a bit. The scratching behavior has halted, my params have come down to normal levels (thank you chaeto) and the little white dots aren’t there anymore.

Now I’m just watching closely and making sure the QT is set-up right.
 

Jay Hemdal

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I’m letting this play out a bit. The scratching behavior has halted, my params have come down to normal levels (thank you chaeto) and the little white dots aren’t there anymore.

Now I’m just watching closely and making sure the QT is set-up right.
Although I don't think this is ich, as I said last night, it is very common for the spots to go away (as the trophont drops to become a tomont) and then, the tomont releases theronts that then come back and infect the fish with new spots.

Jay
 
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chadfish

chadfish

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How long since you last added a fish to the tank?

It looks too diffuse to be ich, but it could be. Possibly skin discoloration from flukes, but not a very heavy infection (yet). Any spots on the other side of the fish?

You should probably wait to see how it develops, or if it goes away. For flukes, you would be able to treat with Prazipro. If it is ich, the spots will likely go away in a few days, then more of them will show up in new locations, including the fins. If they look like distinct grains of salt, that is more likely ich.

Jay
@Jay Hemdal, the spots went away and then came back. I also noticed my shrimpgoby scratching on the sand.
You said it’s probably not ich and I can treat with PraziPro? What exactly is that and do I need to put them in QT? Or is it safe for inverts and coral?
How the heck do I catch firefish when I have a ton of live rock?!
Thanks,
Chad
 
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Jay Hemdal

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@Jay Hemdal, the spots went away and then came back. I also noticed my shrimpgoby scratching on the sand.
You said it’s probably not ich and I can treat with PraziPro? What exactly is that and do I need to put them in QT? Or is it safe for inverts and coral?
How the heck do I catch firefish when I have a ton of live rock?!
Thanks,
Chad

Chad,

That is a key diagnostic clue - the spots went away and then came back. That certainly sounds like ich. Catching all of the fish out for treatment in a QT with copper would be the way to go. Now, how to do that? There are different ways to try and accomplish that - none of them are easy. Some people resort to pulling all of the coral and LR and netting the fish. Other people try fish traps. Still others use two nets and try to chase the fish with one net into the other. Some folks have had success getting the fish out at night when they are sleeping...but in the end, there is no easy way to do this - sorry!

Jay
 
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chadfish

chadfish

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Looks like crypt and you'll have to remove it and start whatever treatment you decide on.
Freshwater dip does nothing for encysted parasites like ich.
Plus, tank needs to remain fallow for 78 days.....get ready for the biggest PIA in your reefing journey.
How fallow is fallow? Can I keep my inverts and corals in the DT but w/o fish?
 

lkc

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Oh for sure. The only thing you need to do is take out all fish. Leave everything else in the tank. Ich can't survive without a fish host.
But it can hide in your rocks and sandbed for up to 76 days.
 
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chadfish

chadfish

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Thanks everyone. Luckily this isn’t progressing too quickly. Here’s my plan:
1) slow the flow through the UV to help kill-off/control any free- swimming theronts

2) set-up QT with same salinity and temp as DT

3) Start soaking food in garlic

4) purchase fish trap. Trap and move fish.

5) dose copper in QT for 30 days. Remove copper then dose PaziPro

6) keep fish in QT for 78 days?? Really?? I can’t find a reference for this.

7) Is there anything I can dose in the fallow DT to help speed/rid the tank off remaining ich?

Thanks everyone
 
Fritz

hds4216

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Thanks everyone. Luckily this isn’t progressing too quickly. Here’s my plan:
1) slow the flow through the UV to help kill-off/control any free- swimming theronts

2) set-up QT with same salinity and temp as DT

3) Start soaking food in garlic

4) purchase fish trap. Trap and move fish.

5) dose copper in QT for 30 days. Remove copper then dose PaziPro

6) keep fish in QT for 78 days?? Really?? I can’t find a reference for this.

7) Is there anything I can dose in the fallow DT to help speed/rid the tank off remaining ich?

Thanks everyone
You can’t dose anything in the DT, but raising the temp to about 81 helps speed the life cycle of the parasite.
 

davidcalgary29

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6) keep fish in QT for 78 days?? Really?? I can’t find a reference for this.

7) Is there anything I can dose in the fallow DT to help speed/rid the tank off remaining ich?

Thanks everyone
There are hundreds of threads in which the standard fallow, treatment, and isolation times are outlined, but I'll just say that the 76 day fallow period stems from one study, conducted in 1992, which suggested that one strain of ich was capable of surviving without a host, in an environment of 20C seawater, for 72 days. I am assuming that 76 days covers that along with a safety "cushion".

Many others have had success with a 45-day fallow period.

There are many "reef safe additives" that are available to treat ich in DT. I haven't seen reliable studies with any of them and I think that all of them either pose some risk and/or are ineffective.
 

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