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Guppy advice

Ingrid

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Does anyone have advice that I need to know to keep guppies ?
 

Colin_T

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Quarantine all new fish for a month before adding them to a display tank.
Treat them for external protozoan infections with salt.
Treat them for intestinal worms and gill flukes.
Monitor them for bacterial infections.

Livebearers (guppies, platies, swordtails, mollies) are regularly infected with protozoa, bacteria, worms and flukes and these will spread to other fish if not treated before the fish are put into an established tank containing other fishes.

You can use salt (sodium chloride) to treat external protozoan infections, gill flukes and minor bacterial infections.
You can use Praziquantel to treat tapeworm and gill flukes.
You can use Levamisole to treat some types of thread/ round worms.
If you can't find Praziquantel or Levamisole, then look for flubendazole.

You can use salt and deworming products at the same time and all livebearers should go through quarantine and be dewormed and treated with salt to make sure they are clean and free of diseases and parasites.

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Dose rates for salt.

For general community tanks you can add rock salt (often sold as aquarium salt), sea salt or swimming pool salt to the aquarium at the dose rate of 2 heaped tablespoon per 20 litres of water.

If you only have livebearers (guppies, platies, swordtails, mollies), goldfish or rainbowfish in the tank you can double that dose rate, so you would add 4 heaped tablespoons per 20 litres.

Keep the salt level like this for at least 2 weeks but no longer than 4 weeks otherwise kidney damage can occur. Kidney damage is more likely to occur in fish from soft water (tetras, Corydoras, angelfish, gouramis, loaches) that are exposed to high levels of salt for an extended period of time, and is not an issue with livebearers, rainbowfish or other salt tolerant species.

The salt will not affect the beneficial filter bacteria but the higher dose rate will affect some plants. The lower dose rate will not affect plants.

After you use salt and the fish have recovered, you do a 10% water change each day for a week using only fresh water that has been dechlorinated. Then do a 20% water change each day for a week. Then you can do bigger water changes after that. This dilutes the salt out of the tank slowly so it doesn't harm the fish.

If you do water changes while using salt, you need to treat the new water with salt before adding it to the tank. This will keep the salt level stable in the tank and minimise stress on the fish.

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Deworming fish.

You can use Praziquantel to treat tapeworm and gill flukes. And Levamisole to treat thread/ round worms. If you can't find these medications, look for Flubendazole.

Remove carbon from filters before treatment and increase aeration/ surface turbulence to maximise oxygen levels in the water.

You treat the fish once a week for 4 weeks. The first treatment will kill any worms in the fish. The second, third and forth treatments kill any baby worms that hatch from eggs inside the fish's digestive tract.

You do a 75% water change and complete gravel clean 24-48 hours after treatment. Clean the filter 24 hours after treatment too.

Treat every fish tank in the house at the same time.

Do not use the 2 medications together. If you want to treat both medications in a short space of time, use Praziquantel on day one. Do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate on day 2 & 3. Treat the tank with Levamisole on day 4 and do a 75% water change and gravel clean on day 5, 6 & 7 and then start with Praziquantel again on day 8.

The water changes will remove most of the medication so you don't overdose the fish. The gravel cleaning will suck out any worms and eggs that have been expelled by the fish. Repeating the treatment for 3-4 doses at weekly intervals will kill any worms that hatch from eggs. At the end of the treatment you will have healthier fish. :)

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Check the water hardness and pH.

Make sure the general hardness (GH) is around 200ppm and the pH is above 7.0.

Livebearers struggle to live in soft water with a GH below 200ppm or if they are kept in acid water (pH below 7.0).

The GH (general hardness), KH (carbonate hardness) and pH of your tap water can usually be obtained from your water supply company's website or by telephoning them. If they can't help you, take a glass full of tap water to the local pet shop and get them to test it for you. Write the results down (in numbers) when they do the tests. And ask them what the results are in (eg: ppm, dGH, or something else).
 

fish48

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a 60 litre fish tank is ideal what temperature do you plan to keep them at guppies can take a very wide temperature range they do well when kept between 70f and 74f some live food should be included in their diet
 
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Ingrid

Ingrid

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a 60 litre fish tank is ideal what temperature do you plan to keep them at guppies can take a very wide temperature range they do well when kept between 70f and 74f some live food should be included in their diet
22 degrees centigrade is that all right
 

fish48

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yes they will be fine which type of guppies do you have are they normal pet shop stock / wild type
 
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Ingrid

Ingrid

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yes they will be fine which type of guppies do you have are they normal pet shop stock / wild type
Normal pet shop type not sure which exact type
 

fish48

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when buying Guppies from a pet shop make sure you are buying healthy fish spend as much time as possible studying the fish you are going to buy and all other fish in the tank if you see any disease or sick looking fish then walk away , visit 2 or 3 pet shops the quality of fish will vary always pick the fish that you want and never let the shop assistant pick the fish for you.
 

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