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HELP!!! Is this ich???

FishFinatic77

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So, today I noticed one of my cherry barbs scraping her body on one of the decorations. I immediately suspected ich or velvet, but there are no white spots or gold flecks anywhere on her body. She is swimming around and ate well this morning.
None of the other fish have shown any simptoms yet. There are harlequin rasboras, cherry barbs, a honey gourami, and a clown pleco in the tank. I have not seen the pleco today so I don't know how he is doing. He is a bery shy fish so it will be difficult getting close enough to see if he has any symptoms.
I have not introduced anything new into the tank, and I recently did a water change so the water quality should be fine.
The only possible reason she could have got whatever she has would be because my water is about 87 degrees. I know this is crazy high but it has been very hot where I live and the room where the tank is in was 91 degrees yesterday evening.
Can anyone tell me what she could possibly have and how I can treat it? I really don't want any of my other fish to get it so I want to treat her as soon as possible.
I don't have a hospital tank to put her in (if it is ich though I know I have to treat the whole tank anyway). Also, today is 4th of July so the stores will be closed.
Is there anything I can do right away?
Thanks!
 

Colin_T

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If your tank's water temperature is 87F and it has been around 86F or above for the last 2 weeks, it won't be whitespot or velvet. Protozoan parasites like whitespot die when the temperature is 86F.

Poor water quality and chemicals will cause fish to rub on objects, as will costia, trichodina or chilodonella. However, these diseases cause the fish to get cream, white or grey patches on their body.

Water quality deteriorates faster in warm weather and bacteria and other disease organisms develop faster in warm water. If you can't test the water for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate, do a 75% water change and gravel clean the substrate every day for a week and see how the fish is after that.
Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it's added to the tank.

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If you post a picture and short 20 second video of the fish it can help a lot.

If the pictures are too big for the website, set the camera's resolution to its lowest setting and take some more. The lower resolution will make the images smaller and they should fit on this website. Check the pictures on your pc and find a couple that are clear and show the problem, and post them here. Make sure you turn the camera's resolution back up after you have taken the pics otherwise all your pictures will be small.

If the video is too big for this website, post it on YouTube and copy & paste the link here. We can view it at YouTube. If you are using a mobile phone to take the video, have the phone horizontal so the video takes up the entire screen. If you have the phone vertical, you get video in the middle and black on either side.
 
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FishFinatic77

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I have a test kit so I will test my water today and maybe do a water change.
I don't really know what a photo or video will do since she looks and acts normal. I can post some though if you think it's necessary.
What are the symptoms of the illnesses you mentioned? Are they contagious?
Okay, here is a slightly odd question. Has anyone had any experience with treating fish with homeopathic medicine? If yes, which one would help my fish?
Thanks!
 

Colin_T

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Costia, Trichodina & Chilodonella are protozoans that affect the outside (skin) of fish. They cause the fish to rub on objects and develop cream, white or grey patches on their body. In severe infestations, red areas might appear in or around the cream, white or grey patches.

All diseases are infectious to other fishes living in the aquarium. This is because the aquarium is a closed system, so anything that affects one fish in the tank, will normally affect all the fish in the tank.

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Bacteria and fungal infections normally only affect fish that have been injured and have open wounds. The bacteria and fungus get into the open wounds and destroy tissue.

Bacterial infections normally appear as red spots or sores on the body or fins.
Fungal infections in fish are normally white and fluffy.

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Don't use Homeopathic medications for fish. Most don't help and many don't have ingredients listed so you don't know what is going into the tank.

The best preventative treatment for fish is clean water, good filtration, minimal stress and an appropriate temperature for the species.

Doing big regular water changes will help dilute disease organisms and nutrients.
Good filtration helps keep ammonia and nitrite levels at 0.
Having plants (including floating plants) or caves in the tank, and a picture on the back of the tank all help reduce stress and make the fish feel more comfortable.
Keeping the water temperature at a correct level for the fish is important to their well being.

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Besides the above mentioned things, the only things you could add to an aquarium as a preventative, would be a dewormer and salt. However, intestinal worms don't cause fish to rub on objects, and salt should only be used for a short period of time to treat minor bacterial, fungal or protozoan infections. If you want to try salt, see below.

You can add rock salt (often sold as aquarium salt), sea salt or swimming pool salt to the aquarium at the dose rate of 1 heaped tablespoon per 20 litres of water. If there is no improvement after 48 hours you can double that dose rate so there is 2 heaped tablespoons of salt per 20 litres.

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 2 heaped tablespoons per 20 litres and if there is no improvement after 48 hours, then increase it so there is a total of 4 heaped tablespoons of salt 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. Then do a 20% water change each day for a week. Then you can do bigger water changes after that.
 
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FishFinatic77

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I have a pleco and cherry barbs in the tank though. Doesn't salt hurt them? (Sorry if I sound stupid but I have never dealt with anything like this before so I have no idea what I'm doing.)
 

Colin_T

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The dose rates for salt that I put in my previous thread are safe for fish. If you have catfish and barbs, then use the lower dose rate (1-2 heaped tablespoons of salt per 20 litres or 5 gallons)
 
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FishFinatic77

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Ok thank you. Just one more question. Can I use epsom salt or do I have to buy aquarium salt?
 
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FishFinatic77

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Oh, and one more thing. The parasites you mentioned only come up on goldfish disease websites. Do these only affect goldfish?
 

Colin_T

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All fish living in fresh water, salt water, cold water or warm water can get the same diseases.

You need to use sodium chloride (rock salt also sold as aquarium salt, sea salt or swimming pool salt).
Epsom salts are magnesium and don't treat fish diseases.
 
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FishFinatic77

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Ok, thank you. I just have one more question. The websites I read said that the symptoms of all those sicknesses are lethargic behavior, loss of appetite, and white patches. I have not noticed any of this. Could it still be one of these sicknesses, and should I still dose them with salt?
Thanks!
 

Colin_T

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Costia, Chilodonella & Trichodina cause fish to rub on objects and the infected areas on the body show up as cream, white or grey patches. If the infection is bad, the fish can become lethargic and spend a lot of time resting, but this does not occur in minor infections.

If the fish is still rubbing on objects, and it hasn't developed any small white spots on the body or fins, then I would use salt for 2 weeks and see if it helps.

A bit of salt will not harm the fish as long as it's only for a couple of weeks, and it should kill the 3 protozoan infections I listed. If the fish is still rubbing after 2 weeks of salt, then we will have to keep investigating.
 
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FishFinatic77

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Ok. I will keep you posted if anything changes. Thank you for all your help!
 
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