Tailspot blenny lost all color - looks dead

LobsterOfJustice

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Alright, I’ve been doing this a while, but this one is new for me. This tailspot blenny has been living in my frag tank for about a year. Maybe 2 months ago I cleaned out the frag tank and moved him into another tank in my system which used to be a refugium but it now doubling as an overflow frag/holding tank. About two weeks ago he started losing color on his head. After maybe a week his head was completely white. Then a few days later he started losing color on his body. He now basically looks like a dead fish you would find laying at the bottom of the tank - but he is still acting completely fine. His skin is not sloughing off in sheets, there is no slime or visible decay, etc. Not lethargic, keeping balance well, hiding an appropriate amount, and still eating. I have moved him to a quarantine tank and am hitting him with metroplex, kanaplex, and furan-2.

E5D62C84-1A1C-43CF-BBB1-0E7091341986.jpeg 49153AA0-82D1-4826-B5FF-EE54C4E55A90.jpeg 4735B8D3-0E9E-4E4C-8F28-1004EF1A5829.jpeg
 
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LobsterOfJustice

LobsterOfJustice

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I’m hitting him with the antibiotics because I wasn’t sure what else to do, but I’m not convinced it’s bacterial. Could be environmental? The tank he developed the issue in is a 20g long which he shared with a bunch of Pavona frags and a Copperband Butterfly. The CBB was fully quarantined but is being further conditioned/weaned onto frozen food before going in my display. The tank is a little sparse (no LR) but no more so than the frag tank he came from. The CBB tankmate or any other fish in my frag tank or display are not showing any issues. The blenny has a varied diet of 12 kinds of frozen foods and is fed 2-4x daily so I don’t think it’s nutritional. The tank is immediately downstream of the frag tank he used to live in (ie that tank drains into this one) so water quality/parameters should be the same. There is a koralia in the tank with him, and in my experience these tend to leak a few volts, so wondering if that could be an issue. But I’m pretty sure this pump was in the frag tank at some point in the past, before I replaced it with an MP10. Maybe the pump just started going bad a few weeks ago. But again, the CBB is unaffected.

If the antibiotics don’t work, I might just try putting him in a holding tank with some sand and LR (more natural habitat) and see if that helps...
 

Katrina71

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They can camouflage to blend in. He's probably stressed in that environment. Jmo. I'd add him to the natural environment.
 
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Idoc

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He looks like a zombie fish, lol. Hopefully you can figure out what's doing this so he can get some color back!
 

Humblefish

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A blenny won't camouflage itself indefinitely. Does his head always look completely white?
 
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LobsterOfJustice

LobsterOfJustice

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Yes, the color shown in the photos is constant. It started with his head being pale, then basically bleached white, then the rest of the body started looking patchy and lost nearly all color. He went from normal to how he looks now in about 2-3 weeks.

Right now he’s in a clean and simple QT tank due to medicating, but the tank he was in before, while it didn’t have LR, was well grown in with algae covering all surfaces and several pieces of coral, a small flower pot for him to hide, and a large PVC tee (covered in misc algae growth) for the butterfly. Nothing white in the tank for him to “camouflage” and he had several places to hide.

Before this, he lived in a 40g frag tank for about a year with literally just a large eggcrate frag rack. He hid and slept in the PVC legs of the rack. Looked and acted normal the whole time. The only reason I removed him was he couldn’t keep up with the algae and I replaced him with a lawnmower to hopefully do a better job.
 
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LobsterOfJustice

LobsterOfJustice

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To me, it looks like skin/scales is actually missing. Like when you see those neglected tangs with really bad HLLE. Not just superficial color change. The other thing I am considering is maybe he was spending too much time in the Pavona and it was stinging him raw.
 

Katrina71

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Poor little guy. I'm hoping to see him turn around.
 

SuncrestReef

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Did he have any light while in the holding tank? My tailspot always changes colors at night when the lights are off and looks really pale. But when then bright lights come back on, his color returns.
 
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Humblefish

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HLLE is what I'm thinking too, although that is unusual to see with a blenny. Have you checked the tank he was previously housed in for stray voltage? Were you running carbon in there?
 
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LobsterOfJustice

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The blenny continues to act completely normal and is eating well... and still looks dead. I had him in antibiotics for about a week and now he’s just chilling in QT. I didn’t expect his color to heal that fast so I will give it time and start swapping out his pipes with LR to give him a more natural QT here soon.

I removed the koralia from the tank he used to be in but haven’t had a chance to break out the volt meter and test it for stray current.
 

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