Cloan Loach With White Spots

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yancho

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Tank size: 4FT / 40Gallon
pH: 7.6
ammonia: 0ppm
nitrite: 0ppm
nitrate: 10ppm (water change 2 days ago)
kH: ?
gH: ?
tank temp: 24degrees

Fish Symptoms (include full description including lesion, color, location, fish behavior): Only 1 fish, Clown Loach is showing sickness syntoms. There are other 40 live bearers with it, no sign of sickness, although a Mollie died yesterday after 2 days before giving birth, maybe over stress + old age. No sign of itch. Clown Loach has had white spots just after the water change, and this morning it went on all of its body now.

Volume and Frequency of water changes: 40gallon - 2 days ago changed 50% - change 20% every Saturday

Chemical Additives or Media in your tank: Nothing. Fluval 4U without Carbon

Tank inhabitants: Clown Loach - Mollies / Sword Tails / Guppies - 2 Plecos - 3 Ottos

Recent additions to your tank (living or decoration): Been 2 weeks since added some mollies and this clown loach. They came with another 4ft tank which I am cycling at the moment.

Exposure to chemicals: No chemicals

Location: SE4 - London - UK

Read this article: http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/ich.php - Looks like best option is Salt ey?

I have a small 30 liter tank I use for Quarantine. Should I use it for this fish too? Is it a bit too small for the Clown? It's a hexagonal long one.

PS: The loach is around 10cm+ big (unsure of the age), and quite fatty. Still swims around nice, and no different behaviour seen since it got the white spots.

Maybe will post a photo later on today

Many thanks
 

Jjsmith46

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Having one clown loach is terrible,its prob why he got ick,u need like five for them to be happy,some body will advise u soon.
 

emma12321

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water life protozin treatment is pretty good i've used it at half dose with clown loach in the past also if you turn the temperature up to about 82 it speeds up the life cycle of ich, no point moving fish to another tank as the water in the main tank needs treating. And yes once the fish is better get it some loach friends, you will nedd to get a bigger tank though as they have the potential to grow 16 inches according to loaches.com, i have some that are 9 inches :)
 

Skins

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Having one clown loach is terrible,its prob why he got ick,u need like five for them to be happy,some body will advise u soon.
Agree, they need to be in groups of 4-5 and quite a large tank as these babies can grow to 40cm. Clown loaches are prone to white spot.
 
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yancho

yancho

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it's a fish i got from elsewhere. for the time being i put it into confinement in the 30 liter tank with a higher temp - 30 degrees celcius

i also read to feed it garlic - how are you opinion on this?

i am starting to raise the temperature 1 degree at a time in the big tank. is that good?

btw most of tank companions are his old friends, he came with all the mollies with the aquarium. that aquarium is now being cycled again after boiling all the gravel and heavily cleaning it.
 

karin

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I tried the raise the temps and salt and it did not work for me. I know it has worked for others. Garlic is good but will do nothing for Ich. Here are some good sites. Whatever treatment you do, follow the directions. Don't stop treatment too early as you risk promoting resistance and a big headache starting all over when the Ich returns. Here are some good web sites to guide you.

http://fins.actwin.com/articles/disease/ick2.php
http://www.skepticalaquarist.com/docs/health/ich.shtml
 
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yancho

yancho

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is salt good for loaches? read that it can do more damage :S
 

simonas

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I;m pretty sure your loach wouldn;t get ich from being on its own however as has been said they are prone to it. I have had four for a while and recently I had a problem with low temps and one displayed signs of ich. Raised temps and a water change seem to have put paid to it. I didn;t medicate and haven;t for white spot for about 10 years so I;d have a good clean water change feed him well and keep an eye on him
 
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yancho

yancho

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Thanks Simon. Now that he is alone, looks like the white spos are note as white as before. He is alone in a smaller tank, with temperature @ 30degrees celcius

The rest of the tank is at 28 currently, up from 26 [normal temp]. raising 1celcius every 12hrs

Feeding him and the rest in the big tank garlic + normal flake food (rich in vitamin C)

is that good?
 

shasm

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The Doctors say that garlic xtreme helps a picky eater take food and may help to boost the fishes immune system. I still use it. I bought it because a fish I had bought from them came in the mail covered from head to tail in ick. But I have no way of knowing if it really helped the fish or not. I can say it did help the fish eat.
 
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yancho

yancho

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I am going to do a garlic paste, basically 1 clove of garlic and some filtered water all in a liquidiser. Will put some cucumbers, zucchinis and peas with the paste and give them a bit like that.

Will then put all the remaining 9 cloves of garlic and water and will use this water to leave all the food before giving it to the fish to absorb as much.

is that a good plan?
 

onebto

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I have copied some of this from an article by a chap called Graeme Robson I read it on another forum I am sure he will not mind me sharing his advice and incites as he has drawn these methods and knowledge from lots of other Loach keepers. I have used his advice once, fortunately I have only had one incident of Ich in over two years and it worked.


Ich, or White Spot, is a protozoan parasite that exists free floating in aquarium water. Because loaches have very tiny scales, they seem particularly susceptible to infection from Ich, although it can affect all aquarium fish. The first signs of an infection may be rapid breathing, redness around the gill area, or the appearance of tiny white spots on the skin of the fish that resembles white sugar. Infected loaches may make sudden repeated rubbing motions against rocks or gravel in the tank. Loach keepers call this behaviour "flashing."

It is possible to conquer Ich in the aquarium, and the following guidelines are culled from experienced keepers of loaches. The first thing to do is understand how the life cycle of Ich works. This information is central to the solution.

“Ich” is the convenient way to refer to the organism Ichthyophthirius (sometimes Ichthyopthirius) multifilis. This parasite has three stages to its life cycle: trophont, tomont, and theront. The white spots on an infected fish are visible during the trophont phase of the cycle. The spots are actually scarring that occurs as the parasite burrows into the outer layer of the fish's skin. Beneath each white spot, the Ich is forming a tiny cyst in which it multiplies by cellular division. At this stage of the infection, the Ich is impervious to medication.

When the cysts mature, they burst and release thousands of the tomont stage cells into the water. The tomonts develop a slimy coat immediately after emerging from the infected fish, which allows each one to adhere to aquarium décor, substrate and even the glass walls of the tank. Once the encapsulation is complete, the organism begins a second stage of reproduction by further cellular division.

Finally, the Ich is released from the capsules in its theront phase. These theronts swim out in search of new host fishes and begin the cycle again. It is only during this free-swimming phase of the life cycle that medication is effective. Theront cells are not visible in the water.

Chemical treatment:

Many different products are available to deal with Ich, but perhaps the most effective products are ones that contain the chemicals formalin and malachite green (sometimes called malachite blue or Victoria green). Both of these chemicals are highly toxic and in some areas, their sale is restricted. They are carcinogenic, so great care must be taken to wash any body part that is directly exposed to the medicine or treated water. Products such as Rid-Ich and Quick Cure are available in most aquarium shops, but if you're not sure which product to buy, consult a knowledgeable clerk.

Because these products are so toxic, many loach keepers recommend dosing an infected tank at 50% of the level indicated on the packaging. Many of these products recommend dosing at one drop per US gallon, so it may be prudent to dose at one drop per two US gallons.

The speed of transformation between stages of the Ich life cycle is affected by the temperature of the water. The organism goes through all three phases of its cycle more rapidly in warmer conditions, so we recommend that the temperature of a treated tank be gradually increased to around 86 F (30 C). This has to happen gradually to avoid further stress on the fish. Some sources have said that temperatures above 86 degrees Fahrenheit alone will kill off the parasite. However, many fish and aquarium plants cannot tolerate these elevated temperatures long enough to complete a full life cycle of the parasite and effectively eradicate it from the aquarium completely.


I have spoken with a lot of aquarists that keep Loaches and especially Clown Loach and they recommend the following treatment for Ich:

1. Do a 50% water change and vacuum the substrate well. This will eliminate half of the Ich cells in the tank right away. Make sure you clean all water changing equipment thoroughly and allow it to dry completely before using it again. You don't want to spread Ich to another tank, or reintroduce it to the infected tank during or after treatment.

2. Remove any carbon from the filtration system. Carbon depletes the active chemicals in Ich medication from the water. Throw this carbon away as it may harbour more Ich cells.

3. Gradually increase the water temperature over a period of 24 hours to 86F (30C). This is about the maximum tolerable range for loaches, but you should make sure that any other tank inhabitants will be able to survive temperatures that high. Exceeding this maximum temperature for very long can further stress or even kill many fish. We recommend increasing the water temperature with great care. Also, consider the temperature requirements of any live plants and other Fish in your tank during this process.

4. Dose the tank with Ich medication. DO NOT add salt despite the advice that is sometimes given. Generally speaking, loaches can't deal with salt and it ends up being a further stress on them.

5. Try to increase aeration by either lowering the water level to allow a splash from the return flow of your filtration, adding an air stone will only add a very limited increase of oxygen saturation to your water. Gill function of infected fish is usually compromised by the Ich parasite and they will benefit from increased oxygen supply.

6. Be patient and resolved. Wait a minimum of two days before dosing the tank again. Some aquarists have had success waiting four days between treatments. Remember - you want to expose the maximum amount of theront cells to the medication for the longest possible time.

7. Perform another 50% water change and then dose the tank again. This cycle of large water changes followed by medication is repeated AT LEAST four times. Just because there are no more spots on the fish, you can't be sure that Ich is not still alive in the water in the invisible theront stage. Remember to wash thoroughly after coming in contact with treated water!

8. Once the full course of medication has taken place, lower the water temperature slowly, back to your usual temperature, and place fresh carbon in the filtration system. NOTE: It is essential to continue treatment for at least three days after the last visible sign of Ich is gone. Some water borne cells may still be alive in the tank.


Ich infestation, by itself, is extremely stressful for fish, but combined with toxic chemicals and high temperatures the fish are truly compromised. The Ich medication may also damage the biological filter of the tank, so rising levels of ammonia caused by mini-cycling of the biological filter may further endanger a loach's health. Some fish may die during this treatment period, but others may survive. It can be brutal to wait for the chemicals to knock the Ich out as your fish are clearly in distress, but this method has been found by many to be a very effective treatment for Ich.

The treatment above has been tried and tested and will minimize stress on fish in most situations. Once the tank has been cleared of Ich, your attention should shift to water quality and rebuilding a healthy and mature bio filtration cycle and a comfortable home for your fish.

This is obviousley just one way of removing Ich from a tank its up to you if you choose it or another method, but when you remove the Ich from your fish and the tank you then have other issues to deal with other members have already eluded to and that is size of tank and fellow species numbers.

Eventually Clown loach can become very large and bulky fish requiring tanks 6 foot in length and sometimes bigger. As juveniles they can be kept in 4 or 5 ft tanks, but you will have to take into account the number of Clown loach you have? as well as filtration and flow in your tank but one Clown loach on its own is really not fare even if it came from another tank with other species of fish that it is familiar with they are not its own kind so are completely insufficient .

Like all fish species Clown loach require specific conditions and I recommend you do some study there are plenty of people who can help you out when you have done with your immediate problem that is if you decide to keep Clown Loach.

Good luck regards onebto
 
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yancho

yancho

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Thanks alot for your help!

I tried the salt thing for this week and am seeing no spots left on the loach's back. However this week I lost 2 mollies in the main tank. Should I treat the whole water with "King British White Spot Control" (50%) dosage since there are the cory's there? Photos and problem discussed here: http://www.fishforums.net/index.php?/topic/349456-found-a-dead-swordtail-without-scales/ - No spots where found on these!

Could the clown just showed white spots since its poor water quality? well tests are showing that everything is super fine! Am I missing something?
 

onebto

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Thanks alot for your help!

I tried the salt thing for this week and am seeing no spots left on the loach's back. However this week I lost 2 mollies in the main tank. Should I treat the whole water with "King British White Spot Control" (50%) dosage since there are the cory's there? Photos and problem discussed here: http://www.fishforum...without-scales/ - No spots where found on these!

Could the clown just showed white spots since its poor water quality? well tests are showing that everything is super fine! Am I missing something?

Personally I am not a fan and do not use the salt option but I do understand that people have tried it and it has worked.

Just because there are no white spots any more it does not mean that the Ich has gone you need to understand the cycle of Ich (see my other post)

Personally I would use a medication that contains the chemicals formalin and malachite green (sometimes called malachite blue or Victoria green) BUT ONLY HALF DOSE! follow the instruction exactly otherwise you risk the Ich not being completely removed and it flaring up again Patiences is vital in dealing with Ich.

Poor water quality will cause stress, stress can be a big factor in Clown Loach getting Ich but by no means the exclusive reason why they would contract it.

Regards onebto.
 
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yancho

yancho

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Many thanks again!! Can you recommend me some medicine in UK please? is the one i showed u : http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/KING-BRITISH-WHITE-SPOT-CONTROL-100ML-/280594944977?pt=UK_Pet_Supplies_Fish&hash=item4154c313d1 good please?

I am thinking to put a half dosage in the emergency tank and also half dosage in the full tank (where cories are). both temperatures are 30 degrees celcius now.
 

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