API PIMAFIX NOT SAFE FOR FRESHWATER SNAILS

Gabriel20

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I’m posting this for future beginners who run into fungal issues in their tanks. My problem with fungus has been solved for weeks but hopefully my experience can keep someone from killing their snails in the future.
After doing research about the product everything I found was conflicting, some said it was safe for invertebrates, some said it wasn’t. I dosed the pimafix according to the bottle and was fine the first day. Second day I dosed the tank, and came back a few minutes later and all of my mystery snails were curled up outside of their shells and twitching in a way that resembles a human having seizures. Some were floating. I immediately filled an old fish bowl with clean water and moved all of my snails into the bowl. About an hour later all of the snails were fine.
From my own personal experience, it will harm snails. The best thing you can do is invest in a small basic tank to set up and use as a quarantine tank any time you have to medicate specific fish. A quarantine tank truly is a staple in the hobby, even if you only have room for something small. And it’s smart to quarantine new fish before adding them to a tank with other fish. I can assure you, it’s not a waste of money.
 

andieb

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Hi Gabriel,

Thank you so much for this PSA. I wish I had seen it before I did exactly what you did.

One of my corydoras habrosus had white fungus so I dosed my 10 gal quarantine tank following the instructions on the bottle. By the time I moved him to the quarantine tank I was pretty sure he was dead. I decided to also dose the main tank in case any of the other fish caught the fungus. The main tank is a 20 gal long and has corydoras habrosus, ghost shrimp and 3 mystery (diffusa) snails.

I noticed immediately that the snails were syphoning at the top of the water (that thing where they put out that snorkel thing and pump air into their lung). About an hour later they did exactly what you're describing, lying on their sides out of their shells, writhing. By that time I was sure the fish with fungus was dead so I took him out of the 10 gal quarantine tank and changed 70% of its water. Then I moved the snails from the main tank into the quarantine tank. But they kept writhing, I'm guessing because of the residual pimafix in the quarantine tank. So I got a tupperware of new water treated with SeaChem Prime, I put the heater in it and an air stone.

The snails by that time couldn't walk and were sitting on the bottom of the tupperware but they were still trying to syphon but couldn't reach the surface of the water. So I had to use a suction cup thermometer placed sideways to prop them up just below the surface of the water so they could syphon air from the surface. They hung out like that for about 30 minutes, just hanging out of their shells partially, syphoning frequently and looking very upset. Eventually they started to liven up and they ate some food off of my finger. (I washed my hands for about 2 whole minutes in very hot water to make sure there was no pimafix on my hands before handling the snails - the pimafix actually burned one of my fingers). After eating the snails started walking around gingerly and acting subdued.

I've completely emptied the quarantine tank, took out out the sand, I rinsed the tank while syphoning away the water, then I wiped the tank with sand and carbon from a filter insert (because pimafix is tea tree oil, I didn't know how to clean the oil away without using something like soap, but I read on another forum about a guy washing motor oil from a tank using carbon and sand). Then I wiped with vinegar and rinsed it again and drained it. I can't smell the pinafix anymore so I think I'm good to refill the tank with clean water. I have no idea how to clean the sand though :( Should I throw it out and get new sand?

How will I ever get the main tank to be habitable again? What did you end up doing with your snails? Were you ever able to move them back to your tank? I'm thinking of putting a carbon thing in the HOB filter and doing big water changes each day for a week. Then I'll see if I can smell the evil pimafix smell in the tank.

This is super long and I'm sorry! I appreciate any help though, I'm completely out of my depth here.
 

Bluephoenix4462

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Hi Gabriel,

Thank you so much for this PSA. I wish I had seen it before I did exactly what you did.

One of my corydoras habrosus had white fungus so I dosed my 10 gal quarantine tank following the instructions on the bottle. By the time I moved him to the quarantine tank I was pretty sure he was dead. I decided to also dose the main tank in case any of the other fish caught the fungus. The main tank is a 20 gal long and has corydoras habrosus, ghost shrimp and 3 mystery (diffusa) snails.

I noticed immediately that the snails were syphoning at the top of the water (that thing where they put out that snorkel thing and pump air into their lung). About an hour later they did exactly what you're describing, lying on their sides out of their shells, writhing. By that time I was sure the fish with fungus was dead so I took him out of the 10 gal quarantine tank and changed 70% of its water. Then I moved the snails from the main tank into the quarantine tank. But they kept writhing, I'm guessing because of the residual pimafix in the quarantine tank. So I got a tupperware of new water treated with SeaChem Prime, I put the heater in it and an air stone.

The snails by that time couldn't walk and were sitting on the bottom of the tupperware but they were still trying to syphon but couldn't reach the surface of the water. So I had to use a suction cup thermometer placed sideways to prop them up just below the surface of the water so they could syphon air from the surface. They hung out like that for about 30 minutes, just hanging out of their shells partially, syphoning frequently and looking very upset. Eventually they started to liven up and they ate some food off of my finger. (I washed my hands for about 2 whole minutes in very hot water to make sure there was no pimafix on my hands before handling the snails - the pimafix actually burned one of my fingers). After eating the snails started walking around gingerly and acting subdued.

I've completely emptied the quarantine tank, took out out the sand, I rinsed the tank while syphoning away the water, then I wiped the tank with sand and carbon from a filter insert (because pimafix is tea tree oil, I didn't know how to clean the oil away without using something like soap, but I read on another forum about a guy washing motor oil from a tank using carbon and sand). Then I wiped with vinegar and rinsed it again and drained it. I can't smell the pinafix anymore so I think I'm good to refill the tank with clean water. I have no idea how to clean the sand though :( Should I throw it out and get new sand?

How will I ever get the main tank to be habitable again? What did you end up doing with your snails? Were you ever able to move them back to your tank? I'm thinking of putting a carbon thing in the HOB filter and doing big water changes each day for a week. Then I'll see if I can smell the evil pimafix smell in the tank.

This is super long and I'm sorry! I appreciate any help though, I'm completely out of my depth here.
Just found this looking up the same thing, don't know if I will get a reply lol I used pimafix also had to remove all the snails from the main tank. What did you have to do to make the main tank safe again for the snails?
 

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