Thoughts on why Tangs are ich magnets.

HuduVudu

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I have seen the phenomnon. Everybody in the tank seems fine but the Powder Blue/Brown or Hippo gets it. They get it on and off. It seems to come and go, but never leaves, leaving you scratching your head.

I have a thought.

Background. I have the butterfly version of the Powder Blue/Brown tang. That would be a Pakastani Butterfly. When he arrived he had two small white spots. I don't worry too much about this because my tank is set up with high flow and surface skimming to encourage good oxygen content. I also have have good biodiversity through live rock. These are my base preventatives for dealing with ich. I also recieved a Sunset Butterfly the same time as the Pakastani and she did a little head shaking but that was about it. The ich on the Pakastani got worse. The Sunset got better. The Pakastani got more spots on his tail and lower dorsals and he was pacing and head shaking constantly. He quickly started eating the white worms that I fed so I didn't worry.

Now to my thought. I noticed that there was a TON of light pollution in my tank. I have decent amount of hiding places in the rock for the fish but the Pakastani would sleep out in the open. Essentially he would be awake the entire night. He would never sleep. Sometime back I had a maintenance tank in a hospital and had 3 Pakastanis in it. They all died because the light in the room that they were in never went out. It occured to me that this stressor of not sleeping was keeping the ich coming back. With that thought in mind my wife started to cover the tank with sheets at night. This seemed to do the trick the ich started to abate and the fish started to calm down.

Aftermath. The Pakastani has stopped pacing and the spots are all gone. The fish seems calmer. He still has the head shakes occasionally but I am sure that that will go too.

Just a thought for people that are having problems with chronic ich on their tangs.
 
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Reef and Dive

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I hope you have got over that discussion about “ich is always in every tank”.

Ich is just in the system and can surely be eradicated with major efforts.

I have a big Powder Blue that has never seen Cryptocaryon. He appears every week on a discussion channel we have here in Brazil about reef tanks (www.youtube.com/floripareef) and never appeared with ich. Many videos are on my own YT channel.

That said, it has been demonstrated that different fishes show completely different susceptibility to Cryptocaryon infection. Tangs are quite susceptible because they lack a protective layer of mucus on their skin, while Mandarins have a thick one and very rarely develop ich. It seems it is just as simple as that...

Even when that tang does not show the characteristic white spots, it is for sure hosting cryptocaryon, otherwise the parasite would not complete it´s cycle and would die.

When under stressful conditions it just lowers its defenses against the parasite and develops a visually identifiable disease.
 
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HuduVudu

HuduVudu

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I hope you have got over that discussion about “ich is always in every tank”.
It was so important I can't even recall it. It seems to me that it is in every tank unless extreme precautions are taken and even then it always seems to sneak in. Life finds a way, is my motto.

Ich is just in the system and can surely be eradicated with major efforts.
Maybe this is true, but question then becomes what will happen to a fish that is stressed but there is literally no ich present in the tank? I think stress is bad not the parasite that capitalizes on it.

Tangs are quite susceptible because they lack a protective layer of mucus on their skin, while Mandarins have a thick one and very rarely develop ich.
This could be very true, but I am very leary of causation and correlation confusions. Mandrians are more prone to sleeping/hiding in the rock work. Tangs ... not so much. Am I right? Are you right? Dunno ... don't care. Just illuminating a possible stressor that fish might be dealing with.

One thing to note is that I am observing this on a Pakastani Butterfly. Having had tangs in the past and also seeing posts here about tangs with ich, I notice there were heavy similarities between what my butterfly was doing and what tangs do. I also observed the pacing which I find interesting. It seems to me that this is an effort for the fish to swim out of the thing that is irritating it's gills. Not all fish do this but the ones that seem prone to pacing are often ich magnets.

When under stressful conditions it just lowers its defenses against the parasite
I think that this is pretty much the heart of the problem. It is also why I posted.
 

Reef and Dive

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Yes Angels are more susceptible as well.

Most of the questions you have addressed seem quite answered to me on previous studies (Burgess classic one 1992, another nice review Coloroni 1997 and many new ones, even with some insight about fish immune response).

Van´s study on the prevalence of wild marine ornamental fish from Vietnam (2018)is another nice reference.

BTW my tang is 4 years old, I´m far from talented enough to keep it stress free that long (I even moved the entire tank to a new home the last year). I also have a Mandarin that sleeps on the substrate, 2 years old that one.

Anyway I don´t like to rely on my personal experience, but find it best to invest time in studying those good scientific articles and others.
 
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HuduVudu

HuduVudu

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Most of the questions you have addressed seem quite answered to me on previous studies (Burgess classic one 1992, another nice review Coloroni 1997 and many new ones, even with some insight about fish immune response).
I don't get what you are arguing here? Is this a rehash of the other post that you brought up? If it is why don't you resurrect that post and rehash it there.

BTW my tang is 4 years old, I´m far from talented enough to keep it stress free that long (I even moved the entire tank to a new home the last year).
Ok? ... Maybe the stress presented itself in a different way? Are you arguing that stress is good for fish? Are you arguing that fish not sleeping doesn't cause stress? I already asked you what would happen to a stressed animal in a tank without ich.

I also have a Mandarin that sleeps on the substrate, 2 years old that one.
Ok and I have seen mandrians with ich. What is your point?

Anyway I don´t like to rely on my personal experience, but find it best to invest time in studying those good scientific articles and others.
Where do you think the gensis for those articles come from? Also they are not the definitive source of information. It seems that minus those articles I have been able to successfully keep fish even with ich. I am not alone. Does that mean that I am lying? What does that mean? Science is a tool not a goal. People like you never seem to get that.

I am not arguing ich here, but it seems that you have a vendetta against me and you are going to make sure that you assert your dominance over me. I don't know why you feel the need to do this. I don't give two fishes for what you have to say. I am providing information. That you don't like that information is your problem. There are perhaps others that might be interested or helped by the information that I am providing but you have to make sure that no one hears anything that you don't approve of. That seems rather petty to me, but you do you.

Thank you for letting me know that anything that you have to say is irrelevant. To be sure I am now ignoring you.
 
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Reef and Dive

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I don't get what you are arguing here? Is this a rehash of the other post that you brought up? If it is why don't you resurrect that post and rehash it
Not from any other posts. I wrote a chapter for a book (not yet for sale so can’t expose details) that brought me to reading quite a lot of articles on that matter, I’ll try to append some of them.
What is your point?
Just that many Mandarinfish stay on the substrate at night. Without any relation to cryptocaryon argumentation.
Are you arguing that stress is good for fish?
Just pointing an example of an ich magnet that has gone through a lot of stress without developing the disease. 2 dino outbreaks, 2 blackouts, 1 total reef rebuild. Some photos of the hard times as an example (all fish in this tank received QT with copper and formalin):

He was in those pictures:
Qt stress:
5488C84D-56AE-4D68-9020-B9E036BADAC1.jpeg

Bacterial bloom post 1st dino treatment:
D4ACDE25-13EE-4576-81DE-D73B79DA2878.jpeg

Moving entire tank:
8BEC750C-182D-4356-899F-E85B9C60335F.jpeg

4BC062FF-944C-4818-B057-2C6C664D729B.jpeg

ED61A334-7F81-4D29-B04E-CECE6747294B.jpeg

Today:
F50ED40E-B379-4B94-A422-86505998D19B.jpeg

My tank is also not that big what is another stress factor. As can be seen weekly on my chanel he acts totally normal anyway.

Not saying stress is good. Just saying it is not enough to “create ich”.
 

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kenchilada

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Tangs are the source of ich. They are plague beasts, spreading it to the sea.

My theory

Actually, ich is fish dandruff. They have very fine transparent hairs covering their bodies, and when the water is too dry they get flakes. Tangs are very hairy and susceptible to aquatic dandruff (ich). When my tangs get ich, I dab on a bit of Head & Shoulders and scrub gently with a soft toothbrush. Clears it right up and makes them smell great.

As long as we’re making up fiction and ignoring study, let’s just go all out, right?
 

LBReefer

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Actually, ich is fish dandruff. They have very fine transparent hairs covering their bodies, and when the water is too dry they get flakes. Tangs are very hairy and susceptible to aquatic dandruff (ich). When my tangs get ich, I dab on a bit of Head & Shoulders and scrub gently with a soft toothbrush. Clears it right up and makes them smell great.

As long as we’re making up fiction and ignoring study, let’s just go all out, right?
This was my favorite.
 
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HuduVudu

HuduVudu

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As long as we’re making up fiction and ignoring study, let’s just go all out, right?
I don't get the elevation of studies to the realm of the spirtual.

Jay Hemdal did a study on HLLE. He set up the possible causes based on his trusted aquarist friends, and on their opinions for the causes. Then he tested those causes. His study showed that some of the fish in a GAC environment got HLLE but none of the fish in the non-GAC environment got HLLE. None of this is definitive. Definitely helpful. This is how studies are setup. I like Jay a ton because he understands the limits of science. He is truly a scientist because of this. He sees science as it is a tool to help understand. Sadly most people that are quoting studies aren't doing this. They want to prove to other people, or more importantly themselves, that they know what they are doing when in fact they don't. We need more Jay Hemdals in this world.

People act like studies are the be all end all and that all other information should be ignored. I find it fascinating that everyone that says blah, blah, blah ... studies never reads them. They just see if they are from an authority that other people recognize and they can stand on as authority to shake their finger at people to feel better about themselves. Studies are a great source of information, but sometimes they don't have good context sometimes their statistical inferences are wrong. The worse part is if an "expert" interprets the study for other people. One more layer of obfuscation in the big game of telephone that people say is scientific.

I do not get why the word ich illicits such insane responses. I guess that is just how people have to be.
 
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kenchilada

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I don't get the elevation of studies to the realm of the spirtual.

Jay Hemdal did a study on HLLE. He set up the possible causes based on his trusted aquarist friends, and on their opinions for the causes. Then he tested those causes. His study showed that some of the fish in a GAC environment got HLLE but none of the fish in the non-GAC environment got HLLE. None of this is definitive. Definitely helpful. This is how studies are setup. I like Jay a ton because he understands the limits of science. He is truly a scientist because of this. He sees science as it is a tool to help understand. Sadly most people that are quoting studies aren't doing this. They want to prove to other people, or more importantly themselves, that they know what they are doing when in fact they don't. We need more Jay Hemdals in this world.

People act like studies are the be all end all and that all other information should be ignored. I find it fascinating that everyone that says blah, blah, blah ... studies never reads them. They just see if they are from an authority that other people recognize and they can stand on as authority to shake their finger at people to feel better about themselves. Studies are a great source of information, but sometimes they don't have good context sometimes their statistical inferences are wrong. The worse part is if an "expert" interprets the study for other people. One more layer of obfuscation in the big game of telephone that people say is scientific.

I do not get why the word ich illicits such insane responses. I guess that is just how people have to be.


You are absolutely right, I agree it is healthy to question science and I would even say we live in a time where we discourage or shun those who do question it. Especially when current events or politics are involved! There is plenty of bad "science" driven by money. However, unlike some afflictions, Cryptocaryon is well understood. It can be prevented from entering a system, in which case it will not exist in the system and not infect fish. Same for some other parasites. HLLE is a different scenario. So I think in the case of ich it is healthy to encourage people to trust the study and the general advice to eliminate Cryptocaryon and similar via quarantine.

Re-reading your original post, I think we all agree fish stress is a thing to avoid. The idea that fish may be stressed by having the light on constantly is a good thing to point out. You asked what happens to a stressed fish in the absence of ich. It depends on the fish's health, the individual fish, the species of fish, and what other pathogens are present. Even if ich, velvet, flukes, etc are not present in the system due to aggressive quarantine, stress could cause the fish to succumb to bacterial or viral ailments, it could stop eating, it could dart around and injure itself on a rock. So I think we agree stress is bad.

As far as I know, stress is not a cause of death but opens up additional vectors that can result in death. This is where it gets fuzzy because there is no study that will cover "stress" that can be applied to a particular individual. I'm extremely afraid of flying - it stresses me out - but it won't kill me. If I had a heart condition, stress could contribute to heart failure and kill me. My cause of death would be heart failure, not stress.

Managing stress comes down to good husbandry and experience and intuition, but also applying insights gleaned from scientific study and other hobbyists to influence your decisions.
 
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HuduVudu

HuduVudu

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You are absolutely right, I agree it is healthy to question science and I would even say we live in a time where we discourage or shun those who do question it. Especially when current events or politics are involved! There is plenty of bad "science" driven by money. However, unlike some afflictions, Cryptocaryon is well understood. It can be prevented from entering a system, in which case it will not exist in the system and not infect fish. Same for some other parasites. HLLE is a different scenario. So I think in the case of ich it is healthy to encourage people to trust the study and the general advice to eliminate Cryptocaryon and similar via quarantine.

Re-reading your original post, I think we all agree fish stress is a thing to avoid. The idea that fish may be stressed by having the light on constantly is a good thing to point out. You asked what happens to a stressed fish in the absence of ich. It depends on the fish's health, the individual fish, the species of fish, and what other pathogens are present. Even if ich, velvet, flukes, etc are not present in the system due to aggressive quarantine, stress could cause the fish to succumb to bacterial or viral ailments, it could stop eating, it could dart around and injure itself on a rock. So I think we agree stress is bad.

As far as I know, stress is not a cause of death but opens up additional vectors that can result in death. This is where it gets fuzzy because there is no study that will cover "stress" that can be applied to a particular individual. I'm extremely afraid of flying - it stresses me out - but it won't kill me. If I had a heart condition, stress could contribute to heart failure and kill me. My cause of death would be heart failure, not stress.

Managing stress comes down to good husbandry and experience and intuition, but also applying insights gleaned from scientific study and other hobbyists to influence your decisions.
At last sanity! ... tyvm for your reasoned response :)

My post was not neccessarily about ich. Ich is the indication of stress, there can be others. My post was about a stress vector.

There is no bad information, and because of this there is no good information. We need the information to make informed decisions based on the context of the problems that we are solving. Shutting down avenues of information hurts us all. No person can truly know the problem another person is trying to solve. So we provide the information that we think will be helpful and then we let them use it or not.

I have gotten some really helpful info from studies. I used a lot of studies when I was building my anaerobic digester. The studies really helped. I am not against them I just seem them as another information tool to help me do what I want to do.

Thank you again for reading what I said and providing a reasoned response. I can't emphasize or thank you enough for this. :)
 

Paul B

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I have no idea what most of this thread is about, but as to the title, Why tangs are ich magnets, I have my own theory. First of all ich is a non issue for me and I would never try to eliminate it as that is un natural and just silly. No need for that. But as for tangs, I have been SCUBA diving since 1970 and I have seen a lot of tangs in the sea.

Usually when you see a tang, you see a thousand or ten thousand tangs because most of them are schooling fish. They swim milometers from each other and never bump into each other. They turn at the same time and eat at the same time. The reason they can do that, and say a sea robin can't is because tangs, and all deep bodied fish have a much more developed lateral line. I even think tangs and copperband butterflies, angelfish etc developed deep bodies for the sole reason of having a longer lateral line.

The lateral line of course allows the fish to "feel" it's surroundings and can avoid fish next to them even behind them. It also prevents fish from crashing into the glass and they can all dive into a coral head without getting scratched and they all fit.

Because of that, they don't know how to act as they have no tang to follow which I would imagine causes extreme stress. You discussed the effects of stress on fish above.

That is my, and only my theory as I am not a tang so I can't be sure as no one else can either.

As for Jay's theory that carbon causes HLLE, he is probably correct . But, it also only happens in captivity and I think besides the carbon, it also has to do with the lateral line. As I said a fishes lateral line can feel the surrounds and it can also feel the glass but it can't see it. It can't get away and the constant bombardment of the sides of the tank to it's lateral line just disintegrate it which is why HLLE always starts on the head and is more prevalent on tangs and deep bodied fish with longer, more developed lateral lines.

Have a great day. :cool:
 

kenchilada

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First of all ich is a non issue for me and I would never try to eliminate it as that is un natural and just silly.
If only we could all be Paul B! Regardless, we all do innumerable things in this hobby that are unnatural and, in my case, probably just as many that are silly.
 
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Paul B

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Three Daughters will do it. :oops: I have one and she has two, but one of them is a boy. Not much better.

I don't remember having hair. :confused:
 

Topekoms

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I will say your topic of post is extremely misleading. As far as ich and tangs I run an ich free tank not to say Paul is wrong but I think he might be a bit misguided. So let's compare ich to tape worm. You wouldn't want to be infected with tape worm as it would affect your health and could possibly kill you. So under the same instance ich isn't healthy for a fish and can kill them. If I will deworm my other animals and myself if need be why wouldn't I also want to keep ich away from my fish? You say it's unnatural but keeping fish in a tank is unnatural and a confined space. To me it is only natural to keep as many parasites and disease out of my system as possible. Not like anyone in their right mind want AEFW in a acro tank. Just my 2 cents
 

Stigigemla

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In the beginning of the thread it was some confusion over science.
If I take us humans and our overweight as an example it maybe can be clearer.
Now the science says that eating to much sugar will cause overweight.
There is no proof at all for that statement.
What we know is that among the people eating food or drinks with to much sugar many are overweighted. Theoretically it can be so that people with i born tendency for overweight like the sweet things more. That has also been a subject for studies so now we now that it is not so much so. That is just statistics. There are a few people that dont get fat even though they eat a lot of sugar but the majority cant.
That and a few other things is why the science today can say that sugar often can cause overweight. Just scientifically made statistics.
 
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HuduVudu

HuduVudu

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Why the word ich induces such a rabid response in people makes me scratch my head.

Let's distill this down. In my example ich is the indication of something that is wrong. I think that, for lack of a better word, the anti-ich people can agree with this. I posit that the something that might be wrong is inducing the ich or stress or whatever you want to call it is that certain types of fish might not be getting proper rest i.e. not sleeping. That is all.

That someone dragged this into a never ending discussion of ich is sad but often the case when it comes to discussing anything around fish disease.

The post was never really about it ich it was about stress. More specifically it is about how certain fish could be prone to this type of stress.
 
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