Our Black Moor has white film covering his body and fins!

Tyler S

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Hi I am a novice at looking after my black moor and right now I am stressing that he might die, he has developed a white film over his body and fins and has a cloudy eye, I believe it may be a bacterial disease as I had a fantail goldfish and 2 bristle nose catfish in the same tank die unexpectedly (I have only recently read that the species have different temperature/environmental needs), me and my partner believe it has something to do with the fantail goldfish as we recently purchased it about 2 weeks ago, the fantail was the first to die and by the time any signs were present (swimming on their side, floating in one spot etc.) Whatever had effected it had spread to the plecos I tried cleaning the tank to make sure it wasn't due to water quality and now the black moor has a film/ protective layer(?) covering him and he doesn't look well and has been sitting at the bottom of the tank, I have heard that a salt bath could be a solution to this issue but as I said I am extremely novice and don't know if it is a good solution. I have also tried putting him into another tank hoping it would help.
Any advice would be much appreciated as this particular goldfish has grown on us and we don't want him to die any time soon thankyou!
 

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Tyler S

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Looks like a protozoan.
That's what I was thinking, would you know how this has happened by any chance? I tried to gently wipe some of the film away in a bucket I don't know what else I could be doing to help him as all the pet stores are closed in my town!
 
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Tyler S

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He has a filtered tank we have put him in the bowl as the big tank is Contaminated witch we are currently cleaning it properly
 
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Tyler S

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We have the filter in a bucket of salt water at the moment hoping to remove any parasites or disease that may be inside
 

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Valkyrie_Lips

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So it sounds like you may have not done enough water changes since you said you are now cleaning the tank "properly". Diseases can often be caused by poor water quality/not enough water changes. The water can be "dirty" even if it doesn't look like it and living in that water stresses out the fish which in turn weakens their immune systems making them vulnerable to disease. What are you water parameters? (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate).

Salting the filter won't do anything, if it is a parasite it would have infected the entire tank. I would put the filter back and wait until another member can properly diagnose your fish. In the meantime I would suggest daily water changes and putting your fish back in the main tank since the water parameters are easier to control in a larger tank. If it is a parasitic infection any other fish in the main tank would already have been exposed and need to be treated too.
 
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Tyler S

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Okay I have put the filter and my goldfish back in the original tank. What's the rule of thumb for water changes, like how often should I be changing the water and should I be changing the water completely or should I be adding tank water to the new water?

In regards to ammonia levels etc. I haven't tested the water as I don't have the test kits so I'm really not sure. We plan on going to the pet store and getting some sort of diagnoses/treatment and test kits asap. I know I know I messed up.

I hope he makes a full recovery he's not looking very well his fins have started to go pale? I managed to get some of the film/protozoan off of him in a separate bucket with just under a teaspoon of dissolved rock salt before putting him back in his original tank please tell me if this was a bad idea!
 

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Tyler S

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If you're wondering where the decor has gone I should add that I have sterilized them with boiling water and I should specify that I had given the filter AND the tank a complete clean with boiling water with salt would this had helped get rid of the parasites or no? Thankyou for your responses I really appreciate
 

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Did you clean the filter media (anything inside the filter) with boiling water? If you did, you have killed all the good bacteria in there, and those on the decor as well. You are now doing a fish-in cycle.

You need to change at least half the water, preferably more, every day until you have something to test ammonia and nitrite. Once you have those testers, you need to do a water change whenever either of them read more than zero.
Fish excrete ammonia as their version of urine, and it is poisonous the them. Bacteria grow in a fish tank which 'eat' this ammonia and they convert it into nitrite. This is also poisonous, but more bacteria grow in a fish tank which 'eat' nitrite and turn it into nitrate. This is not quite as poisonous as the other two, but it needs to be kept below 20 ppm. The term used for growing these bacteria is cycling.
These bacteria are very slow growing and take several weeks to grow enough of them. If you boiled everything in the tank, you have killed all the bacteria and are now starting all over again.

There are things you can do to help.
Get some tetra Safe Start or Dr Tim's One & Only as these contain the correct species of bacteria and will help speed up the cycle.
Use a water conditioner which detoxifies ammonia - and Seachem Prime also detoxifies nitrite. The effect lasts around 24 hours so it keeps the fish safe between one daily water change and the next.
Get some live plants. Yes, goldfish do eat them, but live plants take up ammonia as fertiliser and they don't turn it into nitrite. Even some cheap stem plants like elodea (anacharis) left to float will take up a lot of ammonia.


Once the tank is cycled, you need to do a water change at least 50% every week and clean the substrate at the same time. Goldfish poop a lot for their size.



The white on the fish looks like excess mucous, and this is usually caused by something in the water irritating the fish. Ammonia or nitrite or too much nitrate is enough to cause excess mucous.
 

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