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New Clown Killifish In Established Tank, Lethargic after ICH treatment

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W.R

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Hey all, about two weeks ago I've purchased 8 Clown killifish for my 20L, 2 year established tank with a few neocaridina, I could not quarantine them because my QT was taken up that same day by a friends sick beta fish (who is fine now :D), the store did not want to keep the killi's any longer so I had to take them home and put them in the display nano tank right away.
A week in I noticed onset signs of ICH (white spots), the fish where displaying normal behavior but I treated with HS Ichtocell, raised the temps to 30C and added an airstone, since then the signs of ICH have retreated but now, 4 days into the treatment they've started to behave strangely.
My three males are hunkered down in different spots laying around on the gravel barely moving one of them loosing his vibrant colors, and three of the females have hunkered down with them. All day 4 of them now hide behind the heater, 4 of the ladies still come to eat (brine shrimp) but two go lay down again after.

I've slowly lowered the temps again (25C) as I used to see this behavior in my previous group of clowns during summer, but its been a day and no improvement.
My waters pristine checked with my kit and the LFS and there's no signs of parasites left, the shrimps are not only fine but have a lot of fry that seems healthy too, does anyone know, what the heck is going on? Did I somehow overdose them as they are so small? Did I fry them with the heat? Are they depressed? Aliens??
 
It could well be the medication. I have lost more fish to so-called medicines for "x" than to actual disease. With ich and velvet, raising the temperature for two weeks usually does the cure. I would myself never use any of the mainly snake oil remedies.

So now, do major water changes toremove what you can. Provided the parameters, being GH, pH and temperature, between tank water and tap water are the same or reasonably close, major water changes will only help not harm.
 
They aren't going to like those temps - way too high. There are fish that are harmed by heat treatments, and they would be one of them in my books.
But they are also very small fish, and it doesn't take Ich parasites long to kill the small ones.
Meds, maybe, but that med seems to have the right ingredients to work.
 
Too many fish added to a small tank all at once. Why treat with anything, these poor little guys are crammed into a shoe box and are scared.
 
The medication contains Malachite Green, Acriflavine and a few other chemicals. It can certainly treat white spot but you probably overdosed the tank.

Killifish can tolerate 30C for a couple of weeks, although they age quickly at high temperatures.

It's highly probable the combination of heat and chemicals is the problem. When treating white spot, you either use heat or chemicals, not both because all chemicals and heat put the fish under a lot of stress. Using multiple chemicals (like HS Ichtocell), or chemicals and heat, can kill fish very quickly.

You have 2 options.
1)Keep the temperature around 24-25C and use chemicals.
2) Use heat, 30C for 2 weeks or at least 1 week after all the white spots have gone.

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If you use chemicals, work out the volume of water in the tank with the following info.

measure length x width x height in cm.
divide by 1000.
= volume in litres.

When you measure the height, measure from the top of the substrate to the top of the water level.

If you have big rocks or driftwood in the tank, remove these before measuring the height of the water level so you get a more accurate water volume.

You can use a permanent marker to draw a line on the tank at the water level and put down how many litres are in the tank at that level.

There is a calculator/ converter in the "FishForum.net Calculator" under "Useful Links" at the bottom of this page that will let you convert litres to gallons if you need it.

Remove carbon from the filter before treating with chemicals or it will adsorb the medication and stop it working. You do not need to remove the carbon if you use salt.

-------------------
Before you treat the tank do the following.

Test the water for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH.

Wipe the inside of the glass down with a clean fish sponge. This removes the biofilm on the glass and the biofilm will contain lots of harmful bacteria, fungus, protozoans and various other microscopic life forms.

Do a 75-90% water change and gravel clean the substrate. The water change and gravel cleaning will reduce the number of disease organisms in the water and provide a cleaner environment for the fish to recover in. It also removes a lot of the gunk and this means any medication can work on treating the fish instead of being wasted killing the pathogens in the gunk.
Make sure any new water is free of chlorine/ chloramine before it is added to the tank.

Clean the filter if it hasn't been done in the last 2 weeks. However, if the filter is less than 6 weeks old, do not clean it. Wash the filter materials/ media in a bucket of tank water and re-use the media. Tip the bucket of dirty water on the garden/ lawn. Cleaning the filter means less gunk and cleaner water with fewer pathogens.

Whenever you add chemicals or salt or increase the water temperature, you should increase surface turbulence/ aeration to maximise the dissolved oxygen in the water.
 
It's a small point because so few people keep killies, but many can't stand 30 for a few days, if they are rainforest species from under the canopy. If they regularly got ich (and they seem extremely resistant to ich, though prone to velvet) you would have to use chem treatments. I have only seen ich on a very few species, one being annulatus. If you have an outbreak, there's a good chance the parasite won't be able to lock on to Aphyosemions. It's curious.
Asian killies get it, but African ones much less. I've never had it in my tanks when I kept South American or North American species to know. I've never kept European killies.
In 30 years with killies, and a few outbreaks getting in with newly arrived fish, there has never been a spread to my rainforest killies.

When it used to get very hot in my old house, either I turned on AC (yes, I bought a cheap ac unit for the fish...) or I could face up to 80-90% death rates, at one fish per 2.5 gallons. Aeration, low stocking - didn't matter. The fish appeared physically injured when it cooled down.

Research is showing studied species are unable to digest or metabolize their food outside of a narrow temperature range, so if they are fighting a parasite and not getting any nutrition, it adds up.

Ich is just nasty, anyway you cut it. Some fish react badly to salt, some to heat, some to overdoses of meds. It's never a cost free parasite - in the confines of an aquarium, you can beat it and be left with fish that are a shadow of what they were before the parasite got in.
 
I never had issues with Epiplaty and Aphyosemium in Perth and my tanks sat on 30C+ all summer. Maybe they don't like the sudden rise in temperature that occurs when treating white spot, or my tanks had more water and less fish. I had 18 & 24 inch tanks with an air operated sponge filter, a big clump of Java Moss and some Water Sprite. Most of the tanks only had 1, 2 or 3prs of killis in.

----------------------
For the OP, just use the chemicals and cooler water so the heat doesn't have any impact on them. It might not but err the side of caution. But work out the actual volume of water and don't overdose.
 
Thanks everyone for the replies! I lost one of the males last night, I will keep them at lower heat to be sure, again none of my Annulatus ever enjoyed the higher temps, but I will carefully dose meds again after todays water change. I think I might loose a few more of the little guys but that'll teach me next time to either raise temps OR medicate- stupid mistake it seems.
 
Too many fish added to a small tank all at once. Why treat with anything, these poor little guys are crammed into a shoe box and are scared.
Thanks for your reply! Clown killi's are really small and where actually quite settled in the tank before they got sick, I've had this species in a large long tank once before and they actually seemed to be more stressed out and territorial. Also like I said this tank has been going for a few years, and the water quality was excellent so it was not a bioload problem. But again, thanks for thinking with me here :)
 
Thanks for your reply! Clown killi's are really small and where actually quite settled in the tank before they got sick, I've had this species in a large long tank once before and they actually seemed to be more stressed out and territorial. Also like I said this tank has been going for a few years, and the water quality was excellent so it was not a bioload problem. But again, thanks for thinking with me here :)
Been trying to get my hands on some clown killis for a while now. I hope everything turns out well for you and them. Is it true they only eat live food? And is it also true if there’s even an inch of space in the lid they’ll jump out?
 
Been trying to get my hands on some clown killis for a while now. I hope everything turns out well for you and them. Is it true they only eat live food? And is it also true if there’s even an inch of space in the lid they’ll jump out?
Thank you :) No- Clowns will usually eat tiny flaked foods, you just need to be sure there's enough proteins and such in there, also I believe it's not a great substitute and prefer to feed them live food.

I always feed live brine shrimps with a tiny bit of flakes mixed in, that way they keep eating flaked food in case I go out of town for a week but mostly they can eat their brine shrimp.

I have never ever seen my clowns jump a tank and I've had them for 5 years but I tend to believe they could so I do actually keep a lid on the tank, though at this point it's mostly against evaporation.
If you are able to keep them I highly recommend them, they are such a joy to watch dart around the tank, great personalities, can school but will also each have their own little spots and they are so cute when they pair up.

Good luck to you as well!
 
Thank you :) No- Clowns will usually eat tiny flaked foods, you just need to be sure there's enough proteins and such in there, also I believe it's not a great substitute and prefer to feed them live food.

I always feed live brine shrimps with a tiny bit of flakes mixed in, that way they keep eating flaked food in case I go out of town for a week but mostly they can eat their brine shrimp.

I have never ever seen my clowns jump a tank and I've had them for 5 years but I tend to believe they could so I do actually keep a lid on the tank, though at this point it's mostly against evaporation.
If you are able to keep them I highly recommend them, they are such a joy to watch dart around the tank, great personalities, can school but will also each have their own little spots and they are so cute when they pair up.

Good luck to you as well!
Ohhh this is all good news. Brine shrimp can’t survive in fresh water right? I don’t want pests in my aquarium and I’m super careful about what I put in there and feed them because I’ve had bad experiences in the past with foods bringing unwanted travelers.

But I think brine shrimp (from my understanding) are just raised by me and fed to them, they don’t survive in fresh water and should be pest free? Right?

I dislike all the LFS within 1 hour distance from me, but thankfully I found this guy who services fish tanks offices and stuff. He’s my fish dealer! He finds me all the fish I’m looking for, so he has clowns his ordering list for me (two females and a male, he even has the breeder), just having to wait about 1-2 more months till they’re ready. I’ve been so excited anticipating them. They’re so cute.
 
But I think brine shrimp (from my understanding) are just raised by me and fed to them, they don’t survive in fresh water and should be pest free? Right?
Yes. You can buy dry brineshrimp eggs from pet shops or online. you hatch the eggs in slat water and use an eye dropper to suck up the baby shrimp and feed them to the fish. The baby brineshrimp (called nauplii) live for a few hours in freshwater but eventually die if they haven't been eaten.

They are free of diseases too.
 
Ohhh this is all good news. Brine shrimp can’t survive in fresh water right? I don’t want pests in my aquarium and I’m super careful about what I put in there and feed them because I’ve had bad experiences in the past with foods bringing unwanted travelers.

But I think brine shrimp (from my understanding) are just raised by me and fed to them, they don’t survive in fresh water and should be pest free? Right?

I dislike all the LFS within 1 hour distance from me, but thankfully I found this guy who services fish tanks offices and stuff. He’s my fish dealer! He finds me all the fish I’m looking for, so he has clowns his ordering list for me (two females and a male, he even has the breeder), just having to wait about 1-2 more months till they’re ready. I’ve been so excited anticipating them. They’re so cute.
For sure! brine shrimp come in packets of either just the eggs or eggs and salt already combined (I like to use those since I do not have that many hungry mouths to feed and it makes it so minimal effort). I use a little egg hatch silo, it doesn't even need air pump or anything like that, for three aquaria with about 20 small fish I fill the silo once every three days, then clean and refill it.

Since the eggs come in perfectly sealed, dry and cooled packages you'll never get parasites or illness in your tank through the brine shrimp, I mean in 10 years I've never heard from it once. Also feeding live foods that are this small keeps you water nice and clean, flakes sink to the bottom and muck things up, brine shrimp stay alive long enough to get eaten, I notice a real difference in how dirty my gravel is if I leave for a week and they are fed flakes vs brine shrimp!

Super lucky you got a good dealer, I always have to make calls and assume my fish will come in sick and sad. Even the really passionate dealers I know bring me sick fish once in a while, hence why I've always got a QT set up.

Good luck on your killifish journey! They are so worth it.
 
A little update on the situation, hopefully the last.

I've lost three of the killi's, I put them under the microscope to look for parasites and found nothing, at this point I'm assuming it was the combination of the meds and temp that fried them. The ICH symptoms have dissipated and I've stopped with the meds since. Three of my fish have started darting around again and they look perfectly normal. I've still got two laying down by the heater, I will assume they will die too, as they still are not eating.

I'm going to observe the survivors and if they keep healthy I might get two more in a month or two for the balance in the tank.
Also- since I wanted them to have the best shot I've been feeding only brine shrimp for a week... and now they refuse to eat flakes.
Darn. They really make you work for it.

Thanks again everyone for the advice <3
 

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