New Hippo Tang With Ich - Can Ich Be Invisible in a DT?

Discussion in 'Fish Disease Treatment and Diagnosis' started by LJLKRL05, Oct 11, 2017.

  1. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    I bought a small hippo tang, about 1 1/2 inches on Friday October 6.
    I put it in a 20 gallon QT and after the first day when I made sure it was eating, I started a round of API General Cure and observation.
    Last night, October 10, I noticed it has Ich.
    I am now doing TTM on this one little fish using 5 gallon buckets.

    I am hoping the fish had Ich when I bought it and it was just not visible yet. Could it have been sick and it just became noticeable after 4 or 5 days?

    My concern is that I used some filter media that was in my sump of my DT in the HOB filter for the QT tank. Could I have infected this fish by using that filter media from my tank even though none of my fish exhibit any signs of Ich?

    I have a 210 that has several fish in it, one being a large Blonde Naso Tang. He has never had any white spots on him.

    I had to do TTM on all my fish and leave my DT fallow for 80 days ( a few extra for insurance) when I had my 55 gallon setup. I bought a fish from a LFS and did not QT it, and it had Ich.

    TTM took care of the Ich and I have since upgraded to the 210 about 18 months ago.
    In the upgrade I used the rock from my old setup, and bought new sand and some new rock.
    Since doing TTM and leaving the tank fallow, no fish have shown signs of Ich in my DT even after moving my fish from the 55 to the 210.

    I have been told that "every tank has ich in it" but I have trouble believing that.

    So, could I have ich in my DT and it not show on my fish?
     
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  2. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Leader Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Yes, it is very possible to have Ich in your DT and not have it show on the fish. In fact, unless you use very good QT practices for fish and inverts/coral it is likely. You won't notice until you have a stressor event such as a heater failure or water chemistry spike. The stress will break down the fishes immune system allowing the parasite to go from existing to thriving.

    In this case it is hard to say what happened. It is very possible that the fish had Ich that dropped off, reproduced, and created a new visible infection. This is even more likely if the place you bought it from keeps low levels of copper in their system.

    Unfortunately, it is also possible that it came from your DT. The time line works in both cases and I cannot say which is more likely. Based on what you have done it seems unlikely, but I'm not sure you can completely rule it out.
     
  3. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    The LFS I bought it from does keep low levels of copper in their system. I guess the only way I will know if my DT has ich is to put this fish through TTM, then observe it for a few weeks in QT, then add it to the DT and see if it contracts ich again.

    It will be difficult to do TTM on all my fish again this time. I have some bigger ones now. I do have a good trap though.
     
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  4. 4FordFamily

    4FordFamily Tang, Angel, & Wrasse Addict Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Again, I concur.
     
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  5. shaggydoo

    shaggydoo Active Member

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    I'm one that says all systems have ich. I'm sure there are lots that don't, but the lifecycle of this parasite has forms that are not visible to us and can come into our tanks in so many ways, so I would say it is very possible you have ich in your quarantine. I've had ich pop up in every tank I've had after a fish (particularly tangs) get stressed thru some kind of big change (e.g., had a return pump fail which led to decreased O2 levels overnight).

    I've found the best treatment is to encourage healthy eating and to get tank stable again ASAP. IME, this disease is easily defeated with good husbandry, and I've only lost fish after major stressors led to the fish showing heavy spotting around the gills.
     
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  6. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Leader Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I would get a black fresh water molly and acclimate it to salt water. Then add it to your DT. If your DT has ich the molly will have no immunity and the black color will allow the spots to show up very clearly. This method works great for everyone but the molly. Heck, if your tank doesn't have Ich you may even enjoy the black molly.
     
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  7. Humblefish

    Humblefish Dr. Fish Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Louisiana Reef Club Expert Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Your LFS is doing their customers a great disservice with this practice. Low level copper can mask symptoms of ich & velvet, and delay full blown symptoms from showing up for up to 1 full month. The fish looks "good" to sell because parasites are being controlled at a sublethal level, but that fish is just a time bomb waiting to go off. :mad:
     
  8. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    Thanks for posting this. I was about to research and find out what benefit, if any, low levels of copper had. I guess none except for the LFS.
     
  9. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    Good idea. I might give that a try. I used to love black mollies when I kept freshwater fish.
     
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  10. Humblefish

    Humblefish Dr. Fish Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Louisiana Reef Club Expert Contributor Partner Member 2018

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  11. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    I added a molly to the DT last night. Seemed to take the acclimation well. Should know in a few days if the system has ich in it I guess.
    Looks like a pregnant female, so if she makes it I might have baby mollies taking over, but I should not get ahead of myself.
    Small blue hippo still doing well in TTM.
     
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  12. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    Well, I put that molly in the 210, and I went to bed an hour later. I went to work the next morning and when I looked for it that evening I could not find it.
    I have not seen it since. I imagine it did not make it. At this point I am not sure if I want to try another one or not.
     
  13. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    The tang made it through TTM and looks clear with no spots. He is tearing up nori on a rock and eating pellets. He will stay in an observation tank for a while to see how he is doing.
    Still no sign of the black molly in the DT. Must have gone under a rock and died.
    Still no sign of spots on my fish in the DT either.
     
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  14. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    Well, I put the hippo in my DT, and wouldn't you know it, a week later it has a few spots and is scratching. Also my copperband now has ich.
    I have a 75 gallon tank that I am setting up this weekend to move all of my fish to and treat with cupramine.
    I plan to leave the DT fallow for 76 days. A good time to do some new aquascaping I suppose.

    I just don't know what to do about the copperband. It only eats live worms in my sandbed.
    I thought about putting it by itself in a smaller 15 gallon tank and trying to get it to eat some live black worms or Mysis. Maybe I could to TTM with the copperband and then put him by himself in the 15 gallon.
    Maybe it will be easier to get the copperband to eat what I feed him in a smaller tank.
    I guess I will hatch some brine shrimp and try that too, can't hurt.
     
  15. Humblefish

    Humblefish Dr. Fish Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Louisiana Reef Club Expert Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    IME; CBBs will usually eat live blackworms & raw littleneck clams. Then you can convert them over to frozen bloodworms, mysis, etc.
     
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  16. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    I tried both in the display tank but I could not get the black worms deep enough before the other fish ate them. Maybe in the smaller tank it will be easier to get them to him.
    He never showed an interest in the clams but I will try again.
     
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  17. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    The CBB did not make it. It died in the DT soon after I got home from work on Friday. It must have gotten to his gills because he was piping at the surface when I got home and died a few minutes later.

    I moved all my other fish to a 75 gallon hospital tank and have begun cupramine treatment for ich.
    My 210 gallon DT will sit fallow for 76 days.
    The fish are pretty big, so that is why the 75 HT. I don't have another tank that big to transfer them to after 14 days, so I will do a full 30 days at therapeutic level of .5
    After 30 days I will use carbon to remove the cupramine.
    I put a 20 lb bag of live sand in one end of the HT for my Vrolik's wrasse to sleep in and my diamond goby to have something to dig in. I thought it might also help a little with ammonia and I also have an ammonia alert badge in the tank. I will throw the sand away after treatment.
    Once the carbon has removed the copper, I will leave the fish in the 75 gallon tank until the fallow period is over, so about 40 days of observation.
    Does this sound like a good plan to rid my fish and DT of ich?

    My fish list:
    6 inch Blonde Naso Tang
    6 inch One Spot Foxface
    4 inch Powder Blue Tang
    2 inch Blue Hippo Tang
    3 inch Vrolik's wrasse
    3 inch Diamond Goby
    3 inch Starry Blenny
    Pair of Ocellaris Clowns
    3 Blue Green Chromis

    Everyone is doing well in the HT so far. Copper level is at about .4 and I will bring it to .5 tonight.
     
  18. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Leader Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Its rough, but it sounds like the best option you have available.
     
  19. LJLKRL05

    LJLKRL05 Active Member Build Thread Contributor Louisiana Reef Club

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    I agree. I just hope the sand doesn't affect the cupramine. Their website says it won't. I also hope 30 days is long enough in the copper to kill the ich.
     
  20. Brew12

    Brew12 Electrical Gru R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Reef Squad Leader Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    The sand will impact it, but you should be fine if you keep it at the higher end of the therapeutic level and test daily.
     
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