What will it take to change your mind about qt?

Spare time

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For me it was running into velvet.

I wrote this as a reply to another post but thought it was worth its own thread. I have 20+ years in the hobby, and multiple tanks, one that has been running for over 15 years. Not once did I quarantine in any of my tanks. It was just unheard of back then. If fish died they died, there just wasn't as much information as we have available today. We would lose a fish here and there, but never anything major. I had the same mindset that most have, that quarantine did more harm than good. That was UNTIL my first encounter with marine velvet, luckily it was in my smaller tank with less fish.

Watching all 3/5 of my fish die in an established tank within a few days was an eye opener. I got them into copper as soon as I could and managed to save 2. If this had happened in my largest tank I would've lost thousands in fish as there was no way I could've treated all of them, I simply did not have a big enough system I could've put them into to treat for velvet.

Whenever I encounter a new problem I always do plenty of research and I learned quite a bit about fish disease at this time. I don't care how long your system has been up, what you feed, etc. If velvet gets introduced into the display it's a death sentence for all the fish unless theyre treated with copper. Many other infections, parasites, etc can be fought off with a healthy immune system, even ich, but not velvet. It is simply a matter of luck to not encounter it without qt and it's a chance I will never take again.

So the main argument, is that fish don't have a problem in the ocean so why can't they fend it off in the tank? To understand the difference you must understand how the parasites work. Ich is very similar to velvet with its life cycle and reproduction but velvet is far more deadly.
MV2.jpg



So first what happens in the ocean?
When a fish fish first gets infected by even a single spore, the effects would mainly go unnoticed aside from some flashing. The fish will not have trouble breathing and will still have an appetite. The spore will works its way through the life cycle until the tomont bursts and releases the spores, they become free swimming. Now in the ocean the odds of the newly born spores finding the same fish or another fish are so small that it will hardly ever be deady in the wild. Velvet and ich parasites do neglible harm in the ocean.

So what about in our tank? Let's say you add a fish with a single trophont that you missed visually, they can be harder to spot than ich in the same stage. That trophont will turn into the tomont and release spores. Now instead of those spores having trouble finding the next host in the wild, in the aquarium THEY ARE GAURENTEED TO FIND A HOST. Now they can infinitely reproduce at alarming rates, with extremely high infection rates killing fish very fast.

So here's my advice, if you can afford to lose all your fish, are able to move all of them into a medic tank or have a small tank with very few fish, it may be worth the gamble. In a large display tank with lots of fish I will never put them at risk betting on chance of luck.

So the next topic is losing fish in quarantine. Everyone says it does more harm then good, but Ive also learned it has alot to do with how the qt system is handled. If you treat it like another display tank I feel you will have better success. I cycle my qt tank and use live rock to set it up, monitor ammonia levels daily and use an ammonia alert badge. Ammonia is the biggest killer in a qt system. Second make sure you have plenty of aeration and water movement. And my biggest recommendation is to not immediately begin treating a fish. Let the new fish get comfortable and start eating before any treatment. I'll observe for any signs of stress or illness and if something pops up I'll treat for that first, if not I start copper. I bring up copper levels over a week instead of the recommended 2 days for most copper treatments so it's a little easier on the fish. After the copper treatment for 3 weeks, Ill add carbon or cuprisorb to the tank to bring down copper levels, do some water changes and then treat with prazioro. I haven't lost any fish in qt since I started it.

Hopefully this will help some of you make the decision on whether or not to qt.


I personally believe that, if a person is able to QT, then it is almost a moral responsibility to do so. These fish went through hell to get to my tank, and I am going to make sure I give them the best life they can have.
 
AS

brandon429

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I really do think one place / here / this forum / should be 100% qt based and free from anyone trying to convince readers to skip it or even consider other ways that replace it (supplementing it with excellent tank design, everyone is for) or we will lose a very clear data set if the practice gets watered down like it is in 100% of threads outside this forum. beyond watered down: vehemently sold against

it’s completely unadvised and not practiced from most posters in general forums. They’ll state fish die during qt moreso than without it.


even though I failed to quarantine my guppies in the 80s, 90s and 00s lol that should have no effect on maintaining one zone in the digital verse where marine fish highly associated with disease are handled with these separation and medication approaches. that wasn’t a bad call Jeff made either, I really didn’t think they were qt’ing much in the planted tanks and they darn sure are. It appears the practice is a big deal across the spectrum nowadays.

in my opinion even non quarantiners should support the non mixing of practices so that a clean pattern set exists to measure outcomes across hobby practices, the end goal is increasing retention over time vs current standards

from all the disease back and forth lately it seems there are three options in play for making 2022 a progressive vs stagnant year in disease preps and better retention:

focus more on quality build quarantine vs less

or

focus on less quarantine vs more

or

or focus on tank quality reinforcements / maturity / flow schemes / hiding place quality like Paul promotes and beyond excellent feed quality stepped up efforts from aquarists


a key caveat in making the choice is trying to convince cyclers to slow down after attaining a quick ready tank…they won’t listen, so if fish preps are going to begin pretty much instantly how can we promote option 3? I can’t see drifting towards recommending they quarantine less/ add the tangs now/ so we are left with one last option to meet the timing demands of the masses?


specific to this thread: what convinced me to recommend quarantine in my cycling threads is the # of years this forum was running with HF and Jay without changing overall practices. Each year they could cease advocating qt and fallow, they don’t, the top two fish specialists I know have convinced me with their consistent recommends.
 
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Lyss

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My friend joined the hobby a few years ago before QT places like TSM were around.

I told him to order all captive bred fish directly from ORA and he chose to buy all his corals form cultivated reef.

Thriving tank and no disease problems. Bigger tanks don’t have enough fish choices but for a beginner with a nano. It can be done fairly safely if a person is fine with some limitations vs frustration of potential disease. Now there are even more options with QT venders available.
I personally think this is really good.

Part of my issue with this topic, broadly, is that when we recommend QT to newcomers and someone has trouble accomplishing that — not enough space, money, etc — we should be able to then work to be helpful… Like: okay, this person can’t afford to set up/make space for a quarantine tank, so what can we do to help them? Maybe it’s suggesting the sort of thing I do, maybe it’s buying captive bred direct from ORA or Biota, maybe it’s buying from a source that fully QTs the fish. Offering help to folks new to the hobby in this way on a case-by-case basis can really increase success without the need to alter official recommendations, IMO.

And of course, no matter what or how anyone recommends, ppl are gonna do what they want to do. We can’t force anyone to put a recommendation into practice, we can only be as helpful as possible and try to nudge them in a positive direction.
 
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HuduVudu

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And of course, no matter what or how anyone recommends, ppl are gonna do what they want to do.
Amazingly both sides of the QT debates sufer from this.

People come into this hobby with expectations and when those expectations aren't met they often double down. Because this subject can result in serious loss, people on both sides are adamant that the new person have a plan. This is rarely if every the case when it comes to new people.

I chuckle at Brandon thinking he is helping. I have been paid to do what he thinks he is doing. The new people in this hobby haven't changed in at least 20 years and my guess is more. People are People.
We can’t force anyone to put a recommendation into practice, we can only be as helpful as possible and try to nudge them in a positive direction.
I can get behind this.

Mostly I think the debate over QT is dumb. Because most new people just need a successful plan. If they drop their expectations ask questions and look for evidence of knowledge, they have a huge probablity of finding someone that can guide them. Rarely if ever does a person come into the forum with a disease problem that is open minded enough to do that, so they get people that aren't going to really help them, and more over impede their success.

I don't mess so much with the disease forums because I did that for years. A very large percentage of those people will be out in a year. And anyone they come in contact with during that year that is part of the hobby, will be miserable interacting with them.
 

brandon429

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I chuckle at Brandon thinking he is helping

Hudu your input is largely negative and argument baiting, can you leave that contribution out of your posts here, and break the cycle? you carry our last 2 year's cycling debates as troll input on any thread I'm posting... I disagree with your reefing advice, you disagree with mine, this is what the ignore button is for. Cease following me around to create arguments in this forum, all others game/on

one place on the web needs to be free of veiled insulting arguments against quarantine. we can see you were against the process here above and then in slight confusing disagreement with Lyss just now, your stance is hard to interpret because so many paragraphs and hidden motivations conceal it.

this forum directly recommends to quarantine and fallow, I recommend that in my cycling threads, its that simple. you seem to post against the practice in all places, your post history shows.
 
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brandon429

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Spare posted a very short concise stance, for example post #41, that's the direction this thread and forum agrees with. do the counter selling outside this location...
we need one location where proponents of classic qt and fallow aren't baited, or trolled, or present around any efforts to muddy up the procedure.
 

atoll

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For me it would have to be a major breakout of disease which affected the majority of my fish perhaps even deaths.
Not having QTd in the last 30 plus years with about 11 reef aquaria and fish bought from multiple sources I have yet to loose a fish to any disease transferred to other fish.
I have lost fish either within a few weeks for no obvious reason (suspected poison caught) or an individual will simply disappear as in here one day gone the next.
What I have bever witnessed is an obvious disease affecting a few fish and yet I am pretty certain however I have at least introduced itch with new purchases.
I am not alone in reporting such as I have a couple of friends here in the UK who practice similar to me and report similar.
 

brandon429

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Atoll

what should aquarists do for new tanks, meld your recommend for that 30 years system into what a 3 months system should do/what's a general recommend that's focused on other's tanks and quarantine? If your direct recommend is to skip quarantine in new tank builds, we need to know that. Its hard to discern what others recommend in new tanks when the sole focus is a 1% tank, ie any reef tank decades old. its hard to draw best practices from reefs that present fully opposite of the reefing public.

it really appears the non quarantining public want the practice to stop, they won't let any place simply practice it without sway, its unfortunate. The other methods don't have an entire board forum for patterning accountability, they get to make their case for others solely off one aquarium. or one person's 20 years experience, its always personal testimony based and not a series of 1000 threads I can click and read for myself to derive best patterns. the disease forum is opposite, its not about someone's reef at home its about what works for the posting public, as they present their reefs. the age of tank averages in any page here/not 30 year tanks, we need to adjust recommends to these critical differences.

this forum should be allowed to practice and endorse quarantining but there's too much passion against it from out in the public, that's unfortunate.
 
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brandon429

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we need a subforum here for non quarantine non fallow disease control methods to be worked, to keep practices separate and let readers choose the method they want and each method can develop its own outcome patterns.

label it 'natural disease management' or something, the opposite of fallow and quarantine is what would be practiced and logged. It will be completely amazing to watch proponents field as many posts as Jay does daily, from on average reefs younger than 8 months/count to see/select any page in the disease forum and discern age of presenting tanks.
 

atoll

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Atoll

what should aquarists do for new tanks, meld your recommend for that 30 years system into what a 3 months system should do/what's a general recommend that's focused on other's tanks and quarantine? If your direct recommend is to skip quarantine in new tank builds, we need to know that. Its hard to discern what others recommend in new tanks when the sole focus is a 1% tank, ie any reef tank decades old. its hard to draw best practices from reefs that present fully opposite of the reefing public.

Brandon, I am not one for recommending my ways as such which is similar to @Paul B
You see people go so far with it and then tend to go off track. I only know what has worked for me and a few of my friends. We go against the grain get criticized for what we do even ridiculed. I don't have a magic bullet, well in my and my friends case I we have a magic Oxydator as you know which I believe is a great help. However most of what I do is simple but it does not involve QT.
I will say I do tend to watch a fish closely for a while observing it's behaviours before purchase. That's the start. Others include mimicking as much as reasonably possible where it would be found on the reef in nature for most my fish.
I believe environment is important along with low stress. I don't mix the water from the bag with my tank water, I simply equalise temperature then lift the fish out of the bag and drop it in. Food and feeding is also important along with choice of tank mates. I used living rock and plenty of it. I did try the minimalist scape once but it's so unnatural to me and so I added more rock.
I lost a fish recently one I had for over a year, it just disappeared, there one day gone the next. The wrasse had no sign of disease it was a yellow female wrasse, one of a pair.
All my other fish are fine inc the male yellow wrasse. These things happen as I am sure you are aware.
I could elaborate more but you will get the idea and as I think you know I have stated similar in the past as to how I keep my reef.
 

brandon429

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from that I take for new tankers: using an oxydator which I do really like for its patterned strong outcomes raises o2 and is directly in line with Hudu's ideal setup options/strong oxygen systems. Nobody can be doing a bad job if they install an oxydator I really agree. there are ways of attaining strong oxygen and flow without one, but what harm can it be to have the boost in place/agreed that's a strong option even for new tankers.

Im reading from that an element of self control is needed by new tankers, don't stock so fast. When setting up observation tanks don't make them scary white pvc pipe hospitals :) make them have shady zones available for hiding using color schemes in the scape of the observation tank that closely mimic natural niches.

consider handling feeding marine fish like we handle the choice of fast food / actual healthy home preps for humans, which has a clear distinct health advantage among sampled sets. make an effort above buy and plop/I gather that from above.
 

HuduVudu

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Hudu your input is largely negative and argument baiting
To you. The funny part is that the same can be said of you. Here we are.
can you leave that contribution out of your posts here, and break the cycle?
Can you? This isn't your forum this isn't your thread, yet you are here like the mini tyrant you are trying to force people to your will.
I disagree with your reefing advice, you disagree with mine, this is what the ignore button is for.
May you find it now.
Cease following me around to create arguments in this forum, all others game/on
You are so pompous that you think that I am following you around. Scroll back up and see who posted here first, you or me. Please also note what was said about you in my first post here. As I have said before you are delusional and projecting.
one place on the web needs to be free of veiled insulting arguments against quarantine. we can see you were against the process here above and then in slight confusing disagreement with Lyss just now, your stance is hard to interpret because so many paragraphs and hidden motivations conceal it.
If you don't want the insults don't insult.

Only you are confused by what I said to Lyss. Because your mind can not concieve that it is fallible.

Once again you are confused by my advice (and many others) because you have many things working against you. You have no fish. You have no aquarium, and ultimately and finally you are a binary thinker. Concepts are lost on you.
this forum directly recommends to quarantine and fallow, I recommend that in my cycling threads, its that simple. you seem to post against the practice in all places, your post history shows.
This forum doesn't recomend anything, YOU recomend it. You are not God. You are also not the owner. Make your own forum and you can make any rule that you want and enforce it, and in that place you can be the tyrant you are so deperate to be.

I post FOR disease treatment. I know that is hard for you to understand.
 

HuduVudu

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that's the direction this thread and forum agrees with. do the counter selling outside this location...
No you agree with. YOU are NOT the forum. If you don't like the advice you are free to counter with your own advice. Don't be surprised if people want you to have implemented that advice on your own. People are going to want to see skin in the game.
we need one location where proponents of classic qt and fallow aren't baited, or trolled, or present around any efforts to muddy up the procedure.
Go to Humble.fish

They are respectful and polite there.
 
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atoll

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from that I take for new tankers: using an oxydator which I do really like for its patterned strong outcomes raises o2 and is directly in line with Hudu's ideal setup options/strong oxygen systems. Nobody can be doing a bad job if they install an oxydator I really agree. there are ways of attaining strong oxygen and flow without one, but what harm can it be to have the boost in place/agreed that's a strong option even for new tankers.

Im reading from that an element of self control is needed by new tankers, don't stock so fast. When setting up observation tanks don't make them scary white pvc pipe hospitals :) make them have shady zones available for hiding using color schemes in the scape of the observation tank that closely mimic natural niches.

consider handling feeding marine fish like we handle the choice of fast food / actual healthy home preps for humans, which has a clear distinct health advantage among sampled sets. make an effort above buy and plop/I gather that from above.
Spot on and I couldn't agree more.
Regarding stocking it takes me more than a year to reach anything like full capacity fish wise, more like 18months to 2 years.
I also have trios pairs and small shoals of my fish, few single specimens. I even have a pair of cleaner wrasse you should see them dance around one another in the evening.
 

brandon429

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That rock I can't get my eyes off of, its 100% the ideal diversity reef rock anyone would ever hope to earn

that mix of healthy fish is what they're all striving for yes for sure
 

HuduVudu

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I lost a fish recently one I had for over a year, it just disappeared, there one day gone the next. The wrasse had no sign of disease it was a yellow female wrasse, one of a pair.
You will find it's desicated carcass one day when you are cleaning around the tank. :p
 

Duncan62

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For me it was running into velvet.

I wrote this as a reply to another post but thought it was worth its own thread. I have 20+ years in the hobby, and multiple tanks, one that has been running for over 15 years. Not once did I quarantine in any of my tanks. It was just unheard of back then. If fish died they died, there just wasn't as much information as we have available today. We would lose a fish here and there, but never anything major. I had the same mindset that most have, that quarantine did more harm than good. That was UNTIL my first encounter with marine velvet, luckily it was in my smaller tank with less fish.

Watching all 3/5 of my fish die in an established tank within a few days was an eye opener. I got them into copper as soon as I could and managed to save 2. If this had happened in my largest tank I would've lost thousands in fish as there was no way I could've treated all of them, I simply did not have a big enough system I could've put them into to treat for velvet.

Whenever I encounter a new problem I always do plenty of research and I learned quite a bit about fish disease at this time. I don't care how long your system has been up, what you feed, etc. If velvet gets introduced into the display it's a death sentence for all the fish unless theyre treated with copper. Many other infections, parasites, etc can be fought off with a healthy immune system, even ich, but not velvet. It is simply a matter of luck to not encounter it without qt and it's a chance I will never take again.

So the main argument, is that fish don't have a problem in the ocean so why can't they fend it off in the tank? To understand the difference you must understand how the parasites work. Ich is very similar to velvet with its life cycle and reproduction but velvet is far more deadly.
MV2.jpg



So first what happens in the ocean?
When a fish fish first gets infected by even a single spore, the effects would mainly go unnoticed aside from some flashing. The fish will not have trouble breathing and will still have an appetite. The spore will works its way through the life cycle until the tomont bursts and releases the spores, they become free swimming. Now in the ocean the odds of the newly born spores finding the same fish or another fish are so small that it will hardly ever be deady in the wild. Velvet and ich parasites do neglible harm in the ocean.

So what about in our tank? Let's say you add a fish with a single trophont that you missed visually, they can be harder to spot than ich in the same stage. That trophont will turn into the tomont and release spores. Now instead of those spores having trouble finding the next host in the wild, in the aquarium THEY ARE GAURENTEED TO FIND A HOST. Now they can infinitely reproduce at alarming rates, with extremely high infection rates killing fish very fast.

So here's my advice, if you can afford to lose all your fish, are able to move all of them into a medic tank or have a small tank with very few fish, it may be worth the gamble. In a large display tank with lots of fish I will never put them at risk betting on chance of luck.

So the next topic is losing fish in quarantine. Everyone says it does more harm then good, but Ive also learned it has alot to do with how the qt system is handled. If you treat it like another display tank I feel you will have better success. I cycle my qt tank and use live rock to set it up, monitor ammonia levels daily and use an ammonia alert badge. Ammonia is the biggest killer in a qt system. Second make sure you have plenty of aeration and water movement. And my biggest recommendation is to not immediately begin treating a fish. Let the new fish get comfortable and start eating before any treatment. I'll observe for any signs of stress or illness and if something pops up I'll treat for that first, if not I start copper. I bring up copper levels over a week instead of the recommended 2 days for most copper treatments so it's a little easier on the fish. After the copper treatment for 3 weeks, Ill add carbon or cuprisorb to the tank to bring down copper levels, do some water changes and then treat with prazioro. I haven't lost any fish in qt since I started it.

Hopefully this will help some of you make the decision on whether or not to qt.
I agree about concentration of pathogens but the stress of capture, shipping, the trip from the store should be considered. Most healthy fish in a good environment can shake disease with a little help. As for the dollar amount of a loss, don't buy an animal that's hard to keep.
 
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