Please visit our Sponsors
FAQs on Freshwater Angelfish Disease/Health 9

FAQs on Angelfish Disease: Angelfish Disease 1, Freshwater Angel Disease 2, FW Angel Disease 3, FW Angel Health 4, FW Angel Health 5, FW Angel Health 6, FW Angel Health 7, FW Angel Health 8,

FAQs on Angelfish Disease by Category: Diagnosis, Environmental, Nutritional (e.g. HLLE), Social, Infectious (Virus, Bacterial, Fungal), Parasitic (Ich, Velvet...), Genetic, Treatments,

Related Articles: Freshwater Angels, Discus, Juraparoids, Neotropical Cichlids, African Cichlids, Dwarf South American Cichlids, Asian Cichlids, Cichlid Fishes in General,

Related FAQs: Angels 1, Angels 2, Angelfish Identification, Angelfish Behavior, Angelfish Compatibility, Angelfish Selection, Angelfish Systems, Angelfish Feeding, Angelfish Reproduction, & FAQs on: Wild Angels (P. altum), Cichlids of the World, Cichlid Systems, Cichlid Identification, Cichlid Behavior, Cichlid Compatibility, Cichlid Selection, Cichlid Feeding, Cichlid Disease, Cichlid Reproduction,

Angelfish dying - any advice is welcomed!      6/13/18
I am getting so frustrated with my 36 gallon planted aquarium that I used Activ Flora Red in about 3 months ago. The plants are doing great in this, however all the fish I add die within days.
<Which is alarming, for sure.>
I started adding some angel fish and the water parameters are good - nitrates less than 20ppm, nitrites - not detectable, ammonia - not detectable, ph - 7.2, temp is 80, kh & gh 4 -
<This all sounds reasonable.>
the angelfish die within days as if poisoned, I added 4 initially and one by one they died within 1 week, added 4 more from a different supplier and they all died as well. They were healthy and eating when I placed them in the tank and within 72 hours they start acting weird - both batches of them.
<Which strongly suggests an environmental issue rather than a pathogen.>
Within 72 hours of acclimating them into the tank, they will be hanging at the bottom or the top, not eating, then they start swimming strange as if they are drunk, then they pass, I considered an infection or parasites possibly? Or the only other thing I can think of is the substrate which is the Activ Flora red, as I was reading the bag last night it seems high in metals - aluminum, iron etc. I contacted the manufacturer today and they could offer no advice and said they have never heard feedback on the product that fish were dying. There are 3 airstones pumping out nicely, 2 HOB's one is seachem Tidal with poly filter and chemi green along with matrix media from seachem, I also added Algone for good measure. The other is scaper's flow hang on canister with sponges and matrix media. I'm at a loss. I use RO water and add equilibrium by seachem and ph neutral along with fresh trace. Any advice is welcomed. I used to keep angels 20+ years ago and never had issues, I had a spawning pair and I was not even vigilant with water changes like I am now. The RO system is an Aquasana -
<Looks neat, but surprised that removing fluorine is seen as a plus!>
I thought maybe the remineralizer on the system is causing it as well. I really don't know, I am at a loss. Any advice is welcomed.
<I am not a fan of using domestic water softeners for fish tanks. The types of minerals used to soften the water can result in 'unnatural' ratios of ions, such as more sodium ions than would normally be present. So while plain RO water, with Discus Buffer added, would be pretty good for Angels, this unit of yours seems to be concocting something designed to be suitable for drinking, and that's less attractive as an idea.>
<I'd start by skipping the domestic water softener. By all means use RO if you want, and then add Discus Buffer, or more easily (for farmed Angels at least) a 50/50 mix of hard tap water and RO water should produce something more than acceptable, i.e., no more than medium hardness, and around pH 7-7.5. I'd also try setting up a clean quarantine tank. Why? Because I'd want to get the Angels settled and feeding in a system where I can control all the variables. So no soil! Just plain glass (perhaps some washed gravel if you must) and a simple filter, suitable heating of course, but no need for lights. A 20-gallon tank would be fine for a few juvenile Angels. While the aquarium soil should be safe, you might have a contaminated batch. If the Angels thrive in the quarantine tank, then there's perhaps a strong case for stripping down the display tank, then rebuilding with plain gravel and plants. Perhaps use another brand of aquarium soil. Are there other species of fishing thriving in the display tank? If there are tetras and catfish already, and they're doing fine, and it's just the Angels that fail, then the easiest move is to simply avoid Angels. Try something else of similar size and behaviour, perhaps one of the Gourami species. But if the tank has no fish in it, and you really want an Angelfish community, then testing out Angels with a quarantine tank would at least help you rule out the aquarium soil as the problem. Do think about water movement and oxygenation though -- plants consume oxygen 24 hours a day, but during the nighttime they're not producing it through photosynthesis, and in densely planted tanks with sluggish water movement it is possible for oxygen levels to become depleted. Air-breathing fish (like Gouramis and Corydoras) will get by, but those fish unable to breathe air, notably cichlids, will suffer. You might also consider some other, perhaps airborne, pollutant. Paint fumes, insecticides and cleaning products can all cause major problems. Sometimes solid materials fall into aquaria, such as bits of metal, and these can also prove toxic, copper in particular. Hope this helps, Neale.>
Re: Angelfish dying - any advice is welcomed!    6/14/14

Thank you so much Neal!!!
<Most welcome.>
The tank is in a good area with a lid on most of it and I am very careful with cleaning products, fumes etc.
I have been a fish keeper since I was about 7 years old when my older brother purchased piranhas at the LFS and I insisted I have one in a tank in my bedroom - this was back in the 70's in NJ.
I have never seen anything like this - my fish always live for years, in fact I have torn down my salt tank at least 5 times over the past 15 years due to moves and never lost a one in any of the moves.
<Sounds like you're better at this than me!>
I lost my spawning clown pair over a year ago ( I had those fish for close to 10 years)to a power outage from hurricane Matthew (I am now prepared with a generator for the next outage) I did put one bushy nose pleco in the aquarium prior to the angels and I assume he died and he was never seen again within 30 days. The tank was met specifically for angels so this is a flipping mystery!
<I'll say. But as a rule of thumb, if one fish dies, then another a few days or weeks later, then another, and so on -- then a disease is definitely possible. But if a whole bunch of fish die within 24 hours, then
I'd tend to go with an environmental issue. The "trick" is determining what's going on.>
I use the RO water because I did not want algae issues - and so far so good with the algae - almost zero and the plants are thriving..sadly no fish can survive this tank...
<Where's the tank positioned? In terms of direct sunlight, I mean. And are you adding CO2, which if used incorrectly, can easily kill fish. Two ways: Firstly, as dissolved CO2 goes up, pH goes down, and that can stress/kill fish. Also, as CO2 is absorbed into the water, O2 is displaced, which again can kill fish. Air-breathing fish can survive, and bear in mind that 'in a pinch' physostomous fish like characins and barbs can breathe air, whereas physoclistous fish like cichlids simply cannot. Oh, and something from left field. What *sort* of plants are you growing? There's a thing called biogenic decalcification that can happen with some species (such as Vallisneria) if they don't have sufficient CO2 dissolved in the water. They break down carbonate and/or bicarbonate salts in the water, getting the CO2 out of those salts. It's a neat trick that means they do really well in hard water. But if the water doesn't have enough buffering capacity, this removal of carbonate and/or bicarbonate will cause the pH to drop during
photosynthesis, sometimes very rapidly. I've seen aquaria "crash" this way, all the fish gasping at the surface in obvious distress. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Angelfish dying - any advice is welcomed!    6/16/18

Thanks Neale - as far as plants, I did consider they may be a problem. I did not realize that about some plants having that ability to affect the water chemistry and I have reached out to many different people about this and you are the first one to mention this.
<Oh! It is not a well-known fact perhaps, but reasonably widely seen with hard water specialist aquatic plants. Egeria and Elodea are the classic species, precipitating a chalky deposit on their leaves (carbonate salts of some sort) as they absorb bicarbonate ions, take the CO2, and get rid of what they don't need. Vallisneria are not quite so effective, but I have seen them crash a tank once, in the sense the pH changes so much and so rapidly fish were visibly distressed. Not that they're not good plants --
they're great -- but I'd be careful about using them in soft water tanks (with minimal buffering) with high lighting levels. Basically, any plant known to be a hard water specialist probably does this sort of
decalcification, whereas soft water plants probably don't.>
There are Val.s in the tank and I do not use CO2,
<So guess where the Vallisneria are getting the CO2 they need, if lighting is so great they consume the dissolved CO2? Yep, from any bicarbonate salts in the water. Now, this may or may not be an issue, but I'd perhaps monitor pH across the day, comparing, say, before the lights went on to the pH level after 6-8 hours of photosynthesis. If the pH has risen a lot, then the Vallisneria may be part of the problem.>
I was doing a "low tech" tank....I just put a seachem ph monitor on the tank which seems to work well so I am going to start writing the levels down as I check it throughout the day - I have been through vials of test strips testing the water searching for answers. So Val.s should be avoided for me
<Only under intense light AND low buffering capacity. They're otherwise fine.>
- any other plants to avoid?
<See above.>
Sincerely, Lisa
<Hope this helps.>

freshwater angel     3/18/18
I've looked pretty thoroughly through your site and others and haven't found exactly the right combo of symptoms. I've had this fish for 5yrs+ and has always lived in this 55g with 4 rummy nose and a Cory for the last
several-where others over time. I have a BioWheel, sponge filter and an undergravel at the opposite side.
<Okay... no further data, pix? Bob Fenner>
Re: freshwater angel     3/18/18

Sorry but my earlier message was in process when it got accidently sent. I also want to thank you so much in advance, I've learned so much from you experts that are so willing with your time. this is the first time I haven't been able find a problem just like mine.
To continue-the BioWheel is a Penguin 350 . This angel loves to hang at the quiet end of the tank which is towards the kitchen and almost all activity, watching and of course waiting for food.
Due to life and a loosing some enthusiasm (there at one time was also 9 15-30gs, 1 15g, a 10, several 3's and up to 8+ beta bowls) I let this tank get into poor condition with surface algae that covered the glass and objects and I rarely changed water. I know, what can I expect.
<Indeed! But some fish do thrive on benign neglect, notably many of the hardier catfish and characins. They have quite a high tolerance for nitrate. Angels, like most cichlids, are sensitive to high nitrate to varying degrees, and are less good choices for tanks that need to be ultra low maintenance.>
I'd never kept fish before this earlier onslaught, I was doing it reluctantly for the man I took care of who decided he wanted to raise guppies. The story is too long but needless to say the plan changed, I got into it, had variety of fish and learned all I could. I'm one of those that needs to get all the facts especially when things go wrong.
Now back to angel. About a week and a half ago he started to not eat as aggressively and then having opaque stringy elimination.
<Oh darn! This sounds a good deal like Hexamita. Stringy clear or off-white faeces are a good sign that the gut is evacuating extra mucous compared to normal, which usually implies something is irritating the gut. It might be
a worm infection, but much more likely to be Hexamita, which is almost ubiquitous among farmed cichlids.>
He still acted normal-no outward symptoms of anything wrong. In past searches for issues concerning previous fish, I came across an explanation for the opaque discharge that made more sense than most others that I'd
read or heard. It's merely the mucous that is used to accompany elimination but either there's no waste or an over production due to an internal issue.
<Do see above.>
Since he wasn't eating I figured it was the former. He then started to breathe heavily, but didn't hang around the surface like he was gasping for air, was swimming and positioning himself normally. I cleaned the algae, did some water change and tested the water parameters. To my surprise they were all perfect except the hardness and as I understand if they are used to it that's ok. I then noticed the base of his left pec fin has a red line and a very thin one along the dorsal and pectoral. It hasn't gotten any worse-maybe a little better. I got bloodworms to see if they made any difference in his appetite before starting medication. He ate several the first time. he later had some poop in his string, tried some more and but at this time will only scoop them up and spit them out.
I have tetracycline on hand, enough to do a course of 4 day with one dose per day plus one. Should I use something else?
<Yes! Hexamita is protozoan, and antibiotics will have no effect at all.>
I also have some Duramycin-10 on hand but I don't know how to mix it properly. It says there is 25g of tetracycline per pound. I measured the contents of a packet and there's .066 oz. would that be the same
measurement for the Duramycin?
<Again, this is an antibiotic, and of no use here.>
Oh how do I find my answer?
Thanks again, Merri
<What you need is Metronidazole, about the only thing that works reliably against Hexamita. In some places you may need to get this from a vet, but in the US at least you can buy it from aquarium shops, Seachem's Metroplex
product for example. Use as instructed, remembering to remove carbon from the filter (if you use carbon) as all that will do is remove the medicine!
Cheers, Neale.>
Re: freshwater angel     3/19/18

Thanks so much, I don't bother with charcoal, again earlier read that it only lasts a short time and by now I've even forgotten what purpose it serves.
<Primarily, removes the yellowing chemicals that you see in the water if you don't do many water changes. Was useful when people changed very little water in their tanks for months on end, but since the 1980s, the value of
weekly water changes has been better understood, and most people change at least some water once or twice a month. End result, water doesn't go yellow, so carbon not really needed.>
I did isolate him last night and started the tetracycline while waiting. I see API has a packet form that only calls for a course of once every 48 hrs with only 2 treatments and Seachem same but for up to 3 weeks or until see improvement. Also mixing with frozen food. If he starts to eat, is what's mixed with the food be the only dose or also treat the water.
<Not sure why you're using Tetracycline at all. Unlikely to help Hexamita.
As for the Metronidazole, simply follow the instructions on the packaging.
Mardel Clout and Seachem Metroplex are the two most popular versions, I think. Clout is especially useful and works well with cichlids. You add it to the water.>
I would guess longer than 2 doses is necessary. What might be the prognosis as this may have been going on for some weeks as the stringy poop was actually the first symptom but at that time didn't notice any other issues. I hoped cleaning the tank would have been the answer but also kept looking around the internet-even took pictures/video into a pet store, was
maybe going to get furan 2 from research but wasn't sure. When Melafix was recommended I moved on.
<Indeed, Melafix would certainly be useless here. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: freshwater angel     3/19/18

My last reply was confusing-made it more clear. I did pick up and start the Metronidazole.
Only the API brand is available around here. Looked up Mardel Clout and I see it's exactly for his symptoms. Thanks again.
<Most welcome. Neale.>

Re: Lethargic angelfish mostly hovering near surface, nose up      3/9/18
Yes, the rainbows have been doing fine for the last 2 months that I've had them. They're still young and growing into their colors (ranging between 2"-3" long), though the older 2 Trifasciata males are mature enough that they're starting to display and jostle for the females. All are feeding ravenously and boisterous.
<Then I would leave them be, and leave water chemistry alone.>
The LFS I got them from (The Wet Spot, if you're familiar with them) keeps a few large display tanks of rainbows in our normal tap water (which is typically very soft and acidic) with minimal tinkering. I can add crushed coral to the filter to buffer it and raise the PH if needed, but then the angel and rams would probably be uncomfortable, right?
<Marginally, assuming carbonate hardness isn't wildly high. Angels and Bolivian Rams would be absolutely fine in water around 10 degrees dH, pH 7.5. But if the Rainbows are fine, then softer water is optimal for these cichlids.>
Plus I think it'd be harder to keep it stable?
<Shouldn't have this effect, no.>
The Red Tail Shark was full grown (grew up in the 75g from juvenile size), but the angels grew up with it. Sadly the quarter size is the largest I usually can find angels at my nearest store, and they're typically from local breeders rather than being shipped in. I usually only can find the larger ones at my downtown LFS (mentioned above). Up until the fight neither fish had never shown any interest in each other.
The Red Tail was basically the grumpy old hermit of the tank and just guarded the large tree stump ornament that she lived under. As long as all the other fish left her stump alone, she was a model citizen. Her aggression was usually limited to shooing all those "darn kids" off her "lawn".
<A very accurate description of their behaviour, unless of course there's another shark-like fish in the tank, in which case things get a bit more serious.>
I'm not sure what sparked the two to go after each other that day, but neither one came out of it well. Awesome fish, but not trying to keep one in a community again.
Your explanation about "swim bladder disease" makes a whole lot more sense than what I've heard on every fish forum. When I asked around there everyone just told me that there was nothing that could be done... And yes, the lack of energy for chasing the others around was referring to the Angel, the Gourami is active and foraging around with the Rainbows. Up until the lethargy/nose up swimming, the Angel has been the queen of the tank; the other fish know it and do their own thing while staying out of the way. None of the stores (2 LFS, plus various Petco/Petsmarts) near me carry Kanaplex, so I've put in a next day shipping order for it on Amazon.
I'll cross my fingers that helps turn things around! Thank you!
<Good move and good luck!>
<Cheers, Neale.>

Angelfish with a mark on its side        2/2/18
Hello ,
Hope you can help.
I have an Angelfish I bought around Christmas week. - I sent this in yesterday evening on the site (attached image)- as I could see the pic on the page below and it looks like the problem my girl has..
I went back to the page just now and scrolled all the way down and found the description of the issue with the image ..
So I'm going to see if I can buy Merbromin, Mercurochrome in Ireland and see if I can rub it on and see how goes..
Might be a help to put some sort of description/link on the pic - as you have to scroll an awful way down to find the related info and the pic shows quite prominently in a Google search but there is no real description.
Many thanks!!
<Hello. It's not exactly clear to me what I'm looking at. It's either pink blobs on the fish (in which case Lymphocystis most likely) or pink wounds (i.e., ulcers or bites, in which case physical damage). Lymphocystis is not really treatable as such, but the virus can be cleared up with consistent good water quality and healthy diet. This may take some months, even years though. It is rarely fatal unless the cysts block something important, like the vent or mouth. Wounds and ulcers can be treated with anti-Finrot medication, eSHa 2000 being my particular favourite if antibiotics aren't available to you over the counter. Rubbing on antiseptic medicine is unlikely to work -- indeed, more likely to cause further damage either by damaging underlying tissue or dissolving into the water and poisoning something else entirely. So not what I'd suggest doing here. However, identifying the causes is important. Angels are very prone to damage from sucking catfish that 'latch' onto the fish to scrape away at their mucous.
The commonest culprits are Otocinclus, but Common Plecs have been reported as doing this too. Hunger on the part of the catfish may be a factor, in which case review their diet. Angels also fight, and can cause damage to each other. While juveniles school together nicely, adults are basically territorial in small home aquaria, males (or matter pairs, for that matter) staking a territory around 30 cm radius around their favoured rock or bogwood root. Hope this helps, Neale.>

Re: Angelfish with a mark on its side   2/2/18
Hi Neale,
Thank you very much for coming back to me.
I have 4 other better photos but they are all 1.4Mb each and am conscious of sending you those as you advised on the website that your webmail space is limited.
<True, but can you send one sharp photo? Maybe crop away the rest of the fish, so it's just a nice sharp photo of its body?>
It is like a lesion with a little black dot in the centre and makes me think it's bacterial/fungal or some sort of parasite.
<I agree; I'd be going with an antibacterial in the first instance (eSHa 2000 is the best, in my opinion, within the EU) but keeping an open mind about Hexamita, in which case eSHa HEXAMITA is your only choice unless you can get (from a vet) Metronidazole.>
It was on the fish when I bought her but I didn't think too much of it. It was smaller then , less noticeable, seems like just a wayward scale design.
It's getting a bit bigger and the black dot in the middle is becoming more prominent. Thanks for advising not to do the antiseptic. I will do a water change and see what medication the pet shop might recommend.
<Often they recommend what they have, and sometimes recommendations are a bit poor -- things like aquarium salt or tea-tree oil (e.g., Melafix).
Avoid anything that offers a "general cure" because these are rarely effective once fish actually get sick (they have some usage as preventatives after fish have been moved or after they have fought for some reason). You really do want a specific medicine for Finrot and Fungus in the first instance (eSHa 2000 being good because it does both).>
Let me know if you have space , interest/ time for more pics and if I can send how many..If not , no worries, I really appreciate you getting back to me and your response already.
All the best,
<Happy to help. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Angelfish with a mark on its side     2/14/18
Hi Neale, Wet Web Crew,
<Hello Linda,>
Thanks for the tip about cropping, please find 2 images attached .
<Nope, nothing attached!>
The one labeled 7th Feb, was before a water change and is what the lesion looked like at the start of Jan. The one labeled 13th Feb is what the lesion looked like towards the end of Dec and again now after a water change. ( I bought the fish just before Christmas)
She has laid eggs twice since I got her. But the Pleco ate them :-( So I've got a piece of Perspex for separation in case it happens again.
<Do be careful sticking solid dividers into aquaria -- they stop water flow, which stops warmth and clean water being evenly distributed. Mesh or grid-like dividers are better, such as egg crate.>
I'm hoping these photos may help for a better diagnosis/prognosis/more advice for course of action.
Thanks again,
<Maybe try again with the photos? In the meantime, your range of options with regard to lesions are limited. Assuming this is not "Head and Lateral Line Disease" or "Hole in the Head", but merely a bacterial infection, then
a good antibiotic or antibacterial is the treatment. The key to success is isolating the injured fish from anything likely to peck at or otherwise damage its wounded area. Other Angels are prone to nipping at weakened
individuals given their territorial nature (as adults they are not really social, and can be quite mean tempered). Plecs are another potential source of damage, latching onto wounds and consuming the mucous as a tasty treat.
Hope this helps, Neale.>

Re: Angelfish with a mark on its side   2/15/18
Ahh. Doh!!!
Hopefully now attached, with my apologies.
<I see attached now; definitely an ulcer, treat as Finrot, with a reliable antibiotic or antibacterial (not salt, not tea-tree oil, etc.).>
Wish I had said my plan about the Perspex in advance to you before going to the trouble of getting it. Just one other Angel in the tank and they seem to be mates as they were working together with the eggs twice now.
<Then it's a mystery where the wound came from. Heater burn perhaps? Stuck on the filter inlet? Otherwise, this sort of ulcer is classic "Plec damage" when Angels are kept with Suckermouth catfish. Treated quickly, should heal well. It's a clean flesh wound. Cheers, Neale.>

7 Feb and 13 Feb

Re: Angelfish with a mark on its side- thanks!     2/16/18
Thanks a million Neale !
Will do as you say.
I bought her with it so she had it before entering my tank.
<Ah! The plot thinnens.>
Only thing will be the whole community will be getting the treatment I'd say that won't do any harm though.
When I Googled Finrot/ ulcers in tropical fish. I found this UK product site..seems alright and has a diagnosis tool https://www.ntlabs.co.uk
<Ah yes, a good company; though my preference / experience has always been for eSHa products, which do (usually, and economically) deliver on what they promise. eSHa 2000 is, I believe, the Finrot product. Have not use NT Labs products myself, but they do seem to have a "Anti-Ulcer & Finrot" treatment!>
Just might be a useful reference/resource to give if people from the UK contact you.
<Indeed; and your message will be posted on the WWM website in due course.>
Doesn't stock in Ireland but I think I'm ok as I think I have the stuff already.
All the best, thanks again and kindest regards,
<Glad to help, and good luck! Neale.>

Angelfish mouth problem      10/3/17
Hi there,
<Hello Nicki,>
I was wondering if you could help me out with diagnosing my angelfish.
<Sure thing.>
He is a male, about 1 year old. I had him in a 4x2x2ft tank (~400L) with about 4 other angelfish. I do weekly water changes, around 20-30%, with water treated with dechlorinator only. Water temperature is at 28degrees
Celsius and I have an Eheim 2217 running on the tank (containing filter wool and biohome media only).
<All sounds fine.>
About a month ago he started displaying red streaks around his upper lip (still eating), no other fish appear affected and there were no other physical markings on his body. I separated him into an isolation tank
(stopped eating) and treated with high dose of blue planet tri-sulpha (1 tablet per 20L).
<Were the Angels fighting? Cichlids, including Angels, will do a "tug-o-war" with their mouths when fighting, and very occasionally the jaws become damaged or dislocated, the latter almost always fatal in the long term. On the other hand, so-called Mouth Fungus, or Columnaris (actually a bacterial infection) is a fairly common problem in tanks with poor water quality and/or physical injuries on the fish.>
He did not appear to improve at all, and there was some inflammation around his fin. I then treated with Waterlife Protozin for 3 days, changing about 10-20% of the water prior to treatments. He did appear to improve with the
red streaks reducing. However, on the 4th day (which was a no treatment day), all the red streaks returned even more severe than before and he had lost a considerable amount of his upper lip.
<This does sound like Finrot and/or Columnaris. Antibiotics will help, if you can use them. Outside of the US antibiotics are usually prescription-only, but there are alternative medications. Protozin is, as its name suggests, designed for use against Protozoans, and of little/no help against bacteria. I would recommend a reliable anti-Finrot medication such as eSHa 2000 instead.>
I was wondering your thoughts on what he might have. I don't think its mouth rot caused by bacteria, but I'm not entirely sure if its fungal either (there is a lack of any white or cottony appearance). I also doubt it is septicemia as there are no other red or bruising markings on his body.
<Red streaks are almost always bacterial, so I disagree with your analysis here.>
Even if he was to recover, do you think he would still be able to eat with most of his upper lip destroyed?
<It is unlikely if the jaw bones are actually gone. Angelfish 'inhale' their food by extending their jaws into a kind of tube, then sucking in food particles. Without their jaws working properly, they really can't feed themselves. You have to observe and see if your specimen is feeding, and from there make the appropriate decision.>
Kind regards,
<Most welcome. Neale.>
Re: Angelfish mouth problem     10/4/17

Thank you for your fast reply!
I haven't heard of eSHa 2000 before, it certainly isn't available at the local aquarium shops but I should be able to order it online.
<Indeed. It's Dutch, but widely sold in the UK. Other medications for Finrot and Columnaris are available, but I find this one particularly effective and good value. The Waterlife products, such as Protozin, I've just been disappointed by a bit in the past, so tend not to recommend them.>
I was wondering, if you suspect it is bacterial then is there a reason why the tri-sulpha didn't work? As this is a broad spectrum antibiotic and more effective than superficial treatments.
<Difficult to say. Not all antibiotics work against all bacteria -- which is why we have to use so many different kinds. Antibacterials like eSHa 2000 use dyes and other chemicals that are less effective but also more broad acting, so tend to be better bets provided the fish isn't too sick.
Also, some people use all medicines in ways that prevents them working, getting the dose wrong, or worst of all, leaving carbon in the filter (which immediately removes the medicine from the water).>
Kind regards,
<Good luck! Neale>

Angelfish.... trouble      5/6/17
Hi! I've searched, read, treated, observed, been patient but I'm stumped. I bought some angelfish online that all died within about 3 weeks. A couple were dead on arrival and they just kept dying. I threw everything away from
the tank. In the process of this, I spread something to all my other tanks.
The fish now have small white dots on filaments of pectoral and ventral fins, fins are frayed and separating between the filaments, most have lost their scales, "pinkish fuzz" from (see picture), along with fin rot. I've
treated with Furan 2 for 2 weeks, then Levamisole one treatment, then CopperSafe for one month. Treatment hasn't cured. The fish are eager to eat, act healthy but very hypersensitive at times. What should I treat with?
<Metronidazole... Flagyl... and hope>
See pictures
Thank you
<Bob Fenner>

Re: Angelfish       5/7/17
Thank you so much!!!!!
<Glad to share Jill. BobF>
Fwd: Angelfish       5/7/17

When do you think I'll see a different if it's going to work?
<Days to a few weeks. B>

angelfish swims weird      3/19/17
<Hello Olivia>
I have had my angelfish for over a year and she seems perfectly healthy. I have her in a 20 gal tall tank (which I know is on the small side but I didn't know better when I got her and I can't get a bigger tank right now)
and I do a 20% water change twice a week. The temperature stays around 78.
I feed a variety of flakes, bloodworms, and shrimp. She lives with some cherry barbs. I was just wondering if it is normal behavior for angelfish to swim backwards and upside down.
<Not upside down, no>

She will usually swim normally, but sometimes she will swim kind of on her back or swim backwards slowly
around the tank. She is very friendly and comes right up for food and gets along great with the cherry barbs! The only thing is the weird directions of her swimming and is that normal?
<Not; and the issue here may be mostly genetic. Freshwater angels are tremendously inbred for most stocks. However, the flake food itself may be influential; I would substitute a fine grade pelleted food for the flake>
Thank you!
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Angelfish with ammonia poisoning       3/14/17
Good morning crew! I hope you can help me. I have several fish tanks. I just love my fishies! I have custom made 82 gallon with 4 angels. They paired up but not breeding. The boss is Triggered and his mate Curly. They are biggest angels in there. Also 2 Bala sharks,
<Yikes; will get much larger!>
4 Bavarian rams, black ghost knife, 2 blood parrots,
<And these>
1 pain in the butt male Betta and 2 Plecos.
Everything is still pretty small except Triggered, Curly and 2 Plecos. As soon as my 150 gallon cycles most will be moved. Not the rams or Betta but everything else will be moved to 150 gallon tank.
<Ah, good>
Well my daughter was having a problem with dominate angelfish in her tank and we have tried this angelfish in about 9 different tanks here with him beating every fish up or terrorizing them. We made arrangements with pet
store to take him but we couldn't take him till morning. I wish I would of thought about putting her angelfish in the bucket with the heater before I put him in my tank for the night as well as 2 small angels because they were beating up on a tiny angelfish in her tank. Well Triggered flipped out and not only went after the big angelfish of my daughters but he went after everything in the tank, shredding everyone in his way.
<Sounds/reads like a rogue>
The newest fish is the Betta, All the other fish grew up together and get along well. The Betta is kind of a bully. I decided to move Triggered and Curly to 55 gallon for the night. Or I might of woke up to dead fish. The 55 has 2 blood parrots and 2 angelfish aggressive green Severums. I moved Severums to 5 gallon bucket with heater. Put angels in tank, In the morning I seen Triggered was dying. I quickly tested water and discover ammonia was
threw <sic> the roof. Higher the 6.0 ppm and nitrites 200 ppm.

My filter was not working, not sure how long it was off. Ugh. I took water from 82 gallon and put into bucket, netted the 2 angels and 2 parrots putting them in the bucket. Tank temps are the same. I took them to 82 gallon and released them. Curly and 2 blood parrots were struggling but you wouldn't know it now. They are fine! Triggered was down, gasping for air, breathing hard. I took daughter's larger angel out and put in bucket, moved the other mated pair of angels to daughters tank so the wouldn't stress Triggered anymore then he already was. I seen Pleco's going near him and decided he would be safer in a container. His fins are a wreck, his eyes were fogged. He had about every symptom of ammonia poisoning. I put triggered into 2 gallon clear container floating on surface of tank, so his water could stay warm. I didn't want to cook him with my 5 gallon heater and didn't want the cat to fish him out of the bucket. I put air stone in, prime, aquarium salt, and Mela fix, I has been 4 days, His breathing is almost normal, I clean 40% of his water daily and been dosing with Mela fix. He is showing improvement. His eyes are clear, fins are no worse. On day 3 he tried to get up and swim, I think he is still weak. Today he is staying up little longer than yesterday but still can't stay upright. He gets up but can not stay up right for more than few seconds. He is trying so hard to survive and he is my favorite angelfish so I'm not giving up on him. I read fish can survive this, He doesn't have the red streaks or red blotches which would mean internal bleeding. My question is am I doing the right thing?
<Yes; just needs clean, stable water conditions>

I seem to be spinning my wheels. When using Mela fix <Am not a fan of this plant extract. You can scan/search WWM re>
I'm not suppose to do water changes but he seems to be more active and really tries to get up and moving afterwards. His water in bucket has registered .5 ammonia. This is reason I'm doing water changes. I'm not sure
how, I have not tried to feed him. The 82 gallon has 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 0 nitrate. Could ammonia be leaching out of his scales?
<Mmm; no; but out of gills and wastes/vent; yes>
How soon can I let him outta the container once he can stay a float?
<Whenever you want; elect to do so>
Should I continue using Mela fix?
<I wouldn't. Of no use; and may be worsening the issue/s here>

I was worried about secondary infection and fin rot. Last question, The other mated pair of angels (Sponge Bob and Sandy) Should I put them back into tank before I release Triggered?
<Yes I would>
Not sure he will let them back in once he is out of the container and back in his tank. They been raised together and they squabble once in a while but the tank is peaceful except for the Betta who is somewhat of a trouble maker. lol He defends his spot in tank and will flare and follow whoever entered his territory. He and Triggered squabble a lot but no damage is done. Their territories are next to each other.
<... Bob Fenner>
Re: Angelfish with ammonia poisoning     3/15/17

Hi Bob and crew!
I did typo
and wanted to clarify. The 55 gallon tank that I placed Triggered into the night he went crazy over the other angelfish that was put into his tank.
The 55 gallons filter was not working and I did not realize it when I put Triggered and Curly in there. The ammonia when I tested water that morning when I found Triggered struggling, was higher than the highest reading of
6.0 ppm. The color was darker then the 6.0 on the chart and nitrite was 200 ppm.
<Nitrate likely>
I don't remember the nitrite reading.
I was wondering what you meant Bob when you said, <Sounds/reads like a rogue>
<A rogue individual. Some particular freshwater Angelfish are REALLY MEAN! Have to be kept solo; lest they attack other life.>
after reading "I decided to move Triggered and Curly to 55 gallon for the night. Or I might of woke up to dead fish. The 55 has 2 blood parrots and 2 angelfish aggressive green Severums. I moved Severums to 5 gallon bucket with heater. Put angels in tank, In the morning
I seen Triggered was dying. I quickly tested water and discover ammonia was threw <sic> the roof. Higher the 6.0 ppm and nitrites 200 ppm.
<?!!!> <Sounds/reads like a rogue>
I had to move Severums out of the 55 gallon for the night before I put Triggered and Curly in there. Those Severums are angelfish aggressive and have torn the angels fins up before. Someone gave me the Severums and the only tank mates they don't terrorize is 2 blood parrots who live in the 55 gallon. I think because the two blood parrots are kind of bullies so they don't let the Severums push them around. Those blood parrots have never bothered the angelfish or any other fish that leaves them alone. The blood parrots however don't like other blood parrots. So I moved the Severums into the bucket because I was worried my cat would catch my angels in the bucket. The Severums are much faster and tend to stay towards bottom so I figured the cat wouldn't even really see them and certainly would not try to fish them out of bottom of 5 gallon bucket.
I wanted to say thank you for the help and taking the time to read this.
<Certainly welcome. BobF>

Help needed on Angelfish disease.      3/5/17
Dear WWM crew member,
I have been immensely benefited in the past with your helpful tips and suggestions. Thank you again for that. So I'm again seeking your help for my Angelfish which became I'll suddenly.
My tank is 40gallon with these two angels and 4 loaches.
I live in eastern part of India. Today morning I noticed both the angels seriously I'll but the loaches are fine however. I have moved them to a bucket with air supply.
Please help me diagnosis of the problem. Only abnormal things I notice is red spots on both sides of both the fishes. Kindly see the photos attached herewith.
A expert advice is most earnestly solicited.
Thanking you
Deeptam Dutta
<Any relation of Reg Dutta I wonder? Prolific tropical fish writer 1960s and 70s. Top man. Anyway, sadly I fear your Angels have something known as septicaemia, which is difficult to treat without using a strong antibiotic.
The red patches on the flanks and the bases of the fins are typical of this. KanaPlex is often recommended and probably your best bet, unless a local vet can help you with something generic. Angelfish Septicaemia is quite common, probably caused by environmental or dietary shortcomings. It isn't so much the species is prone to this problem, but rather they are
often kept in smaller tanks or with poorer filtration than people would try with other cichlids. They are cichlids though, and just as sensitive to non-zero nitrite and ammonia, as well as high nitrate levels (anything above 40 mg/l). Your fish look quite fat and healthy otherwise, so if you can medicate promptly, I'd be reasonably optimistic. Good luck, Neale.>

Angelfish with white spots that don't appear to be Ick     3/1/17
I searched your site for a problem that I am having with my angelfish that has a few white spots on it's head that are not Ick.
<Agreed, not Ich; but mucus... perhaps Hexamita/Octomita involvement>
On your site I found this thread... Angelfish with white spots that don't appear to be Ick 2/6/14 http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWAngParasitDisF.htm I believe my fish may be having the same problem. After reading the tread and replies, I could not find any evidence of what
the final outcome was? I have a 120 gallon, planted community tank, that is well established (over 1 year) and is stocked, with tetras, barbs, loaches, Cory cats and 2 angelfish. I use Flora Max for my substrate and have crypts, Anubias , Amazon swords, and java fern for my live plants. I have a couple of photos that I will include and hopefully you can help me out with a diagnosis and some treatment options. Thank you, Robert
<I do concur and re-suggest what I'd stated per the citation above: "Could it be hole-in-the-head?
<Doubtful, but may be some sort of external protozoan. I would try a one shot lacing of their foods w/ Metronidazole; and as this may be a Fluke/Trematode, with Praziquantel as well>"
Bob Fenner>

Angelfish - hole on its back      2/20/17
Dear Crew,
<Hello Imrich,>
Concerning lesions had appeared on my koi angelfish. I've noticed a lesion on its back about 6-7 weeks ago. First I thought it is just an injury caused by a stone or a byte (I haven't seen any chasing or attacking),
<I would agree about a bite. I'd be looking at my fish carefully.
Aggression is the obvious thing. But opportunistic feeding can't be ruled out. Puffers are the obvious suspects, but you don't have those. Otocinclus on the other hand are known "fish grazers". They will latch onto minor wounds, scraping away at the mucous and eventually the skin and blood. Otocinclus do this mostly when hungry (they're almost always starving in community tanks because they are quite specialised animals) so these would be first choice suspects here!>
but about a month later a pimple appeared on the opposite side of it's back, then it changed into a lesion and then they merged from each side and developed into a hole. Now I can see through it's back and if I see right, another pimple is developing next to it.
I have not treated the initial lesion for about a month, I was just monitoring it because the fish was happily eating and swimming around, but then I've tried to cure it with API Melafix, but no improvement.
<Not unexpected. Melafix isn't very reliable. Plus, if the fish wound is the result of biting or feeding by some other fish, the medicine can't do much to stop that. Isolating injured fish is the ideal, so that a suitable antibiotic or antibacterial medication can work properly. In Europe, where I live, I'd always recommend eSHa 2000; in the US, where antibiotics can be purchased more easily, something like Kanaplex or the old Melafix 1 and 2 combo are much better than Melafix.>
The fish is still eating and swimming, but I'm concerned, because the lesion is getting worse. It's not red, so I guess it's not inflamed, and the lesion is not cottony either, so it's probably not infected with fungi.
<Quite so, which is why this wound looks as if it's being "picked at" and kept clean. Otocinclus will certainly do this, but I've seen characins and loaches do this as well; for example, Anostomus. So keep an open mind, and in particular understand that this could be happening at night when the tank is dark and the room is quiet.>
The tank is a 240 liter tank, very heavily planted, probably a little bit over crowded:
7 not fully grown angels,
3 dwarf gouramis,
2 guppies,
6 tetra neons,
2 scissor tetras,
3 glass tetras,
1 male Betta,
1 Siamese algae eater,
1 kuhli loach,
1 Otocinclus,
3 platies,
3 harlequins,
3 panda Cory,
2 torpedo barbs,
5 penguin tetras,
8 bamboo shrimps,
3 Amano shrimps
I'm adding 10 ml of liquidised CO2 every morning before turning on the light and 3 ml plant fertilizer.
Weekly changing 25 % of the water and the water stats I can measure are:
Temperature: 26'C
pH: 7.6
Ammonia: 0 ppm
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: 20-40 ppm
Please advise with what should I treat the lesions and how. Thank you very
much in advance!
Best regards,
<Hope this helps, Neale.>

Re: Angelfish - hole on its back     2/21/17
Hi, Thank you Neale, I'll do as advised and will let you know about the progress. Best regards, Imrich
<Glad to help, and good luck! Neale.>

Growth on an angelfish fin. Diag. w/ no data, blurry pic.       5/28/16
This is a slightly blurry picture of my black and grey striped angelfish.
<And uncropped....>
it has like a white trail floating on the head fin. I can't tell if there air bubbles tiny eggs but it's just floating on the fin. Is this a problem ?is this normal ?I've never had angelfish before.
<... it may well that the Pleco is riding it. READ here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Sick Angel    3/24/16
I've scoured your website to try and help me get a fix for my angel fish.
I have a 50gal tank with 7 mixed Corys, 1 Farlowella twig, 1 clown loach (eating snails),
<Happier in a group>

a Mickey mouse swordtail, and a smokey angelfish. I also have a planted sword and some hornwort. Ammonia, nitrite are zero. Nitrate between 20 and 40ppm.
<I'd work on getting and keeping NO3 under 20 ppm. Please read here:

PH around 8.3. I've always felt my ph was high, but the fish have been in there for 5+ months with no issues.
<I would not seek to modify this pH>
I do weekly 25% water changes with RO water.
<I'd use a mix of tap; at least 50%....>
The other day I noticed that my angel was not eating, sometimes hovering under some decorations, gulping water, and looks like it has kind of a bloody nose.
No red/blood on fins or body. No other body issues, and the other fish are fine. Sometimes it like shakes it head (like having a spasm), I was afraid it was having some sort of aneurism.
It hasn't done that since (that I noticed.) I immediately did a 25% water change, and am going to do another water change today (2 days later).
I can't figure out what its problem is, and I'm scared for it.
Any ideas on a bloody nose and gulping? The blood doesn't come out. It just looks like it's under the skin right above the mouth. I'm worried about adding medicine as I don't have a hospital tank.
Any advice?
<I fully suspect water quality is an issue here... Whatever is leading the Nitrate concentration to be so high. Please read where you've been referred above; and formulate a plan for nitrate reduction. Bob Fenner>
Sick Angel /Neale        3/25/16

I've scoured your website to try and help me get a fix for my angel fish. I have a 50gal tank with 7 mixed Corys, 1 Farlowella twig, 1 clown loach (eating snails), a Mickey mouse swordtail, and a smokey angelfish.
<I would review this collection. The Farlowella is hard to keep long term unless you have relatively cool, clear water and plenty of green algae and oxygen. Eminently suitable for life with Corydoras and in fact the Swordtail, but the Clown will want warmer water (25-28 C vs. 22-24 C for the Farlowella and the Corydoras) and on top of that they're massive polluters, just what you don't want in a tank this size. 50 gallons isn't a lot of space for Clowns, even though it's a big tank for Farlowella and Corydoras.
Furthermore, Clowns are social, and their behaviour is (often) aberrant when kept in insufficient numbers, ranging from nervous/shy through to overtly aggressive bullies. If you can, replace the Clown. Do take a look at a dinner plate sometime -- that's the size of an adult Clown. They're huge! For sure they take years getting there, but still...>
I also have a planted sword and some hornwort. Ammonia, nitrite are zero.
Nitrate between 20 and 40ppm. PH around 8.3. I've always felt my ph was high, but the fish have been in there for 5+ months with no issues.
<Understood. Water quality mostly sounds fine. But if you're using pure RO (which should be zero nitrate) but your nitrate levels are 20-40 mg/l, that is an extremely big increase in nitrate within the space of a weekly water
change. So assuming you're measuring correctly, that big jump in nitrate level could be explained three ways: overstocking, overfeeding, or not doing nearly enough water changes. Next up, pH 8.3 is high for soft water
species like Clowns, Farlowella, Corydoras and Angels. All of these will thrive between pH 6 and 8, that's true. But your pH is significantly above that, and you should plan accordingly. Numerous Central American, Rift Valley, East Asian, North American and Eurasian species that will all do well in hard, alkaline conditions.>
I do weekly 25% water changes with RO water.
<This alarms me. RO water by itself is effectively toxic to fish
. No fish lives naturally in water with zero dissolved minerals. Mixing RO with tap water, say 75% RO with 25% hard tap water, is much healthier if you're
keeping generic community fish; tetras, barbs, Angels, etc.. Hard water fish (like Swordtails and Platies) are happier in harder water, even "liquid rock" well water and the like.>
The other day I noticed that my angel was not eating, sometimes hovering under some decorations, gulping water, and looks like it has kind of a bloody nose. No red/blood on fins or body. No other body issues, and the other fish are fine. Sometimes it like shakes it head (like having a spasm), I was afraid it was having some sort of aneurism. It hasn't done that since (that I noticed.) I immediately did a 25% water change, and am going to do another water change today (2 days later). I can't figure out what its problem is, and I'm scared for it. Any ideas on a bloody nose and gulping?
<Hard to say but environmental stress is most likely
, though you can't rule out inter-species aggression; Clowns for example have the potential to be quite aggressive at feeding time and at night, and during the night
especially Angels are very vulnerable to disturbance. Even if the Angel isn't attacked overtly, it can get scared, and being effectively blind in the dark (most cichlids are day-animals, like us) they can end up slamming into rocks or glass.>
The blood doesn't come out. It just looks like it's under the skin right above the mouth.
<Physical trauma is one possibility, i.e., a bruise. But environmental stress is another possibility. Some bacterial infections start by blocking blood vessels close to the skin, causing the characteristic bloody spots and flecks seen on skin and fins. Eventually the tissue around the blockage dies from lack of blood supply. Fixing the environment and treating as per Finrot should do the trick if this is the issue here.>
I'm worried about adding medicine as I don't have a hospital tank. Any advice?
Thanks, Alexandra
<Hope this helps. Neale.>

Distressed Angel; FW     3/13/16
I have a 29 gallon tank with 4 angels and 6 zebra,

a few plants - it has been set up and running great for a year, the angels were added 5 months ago at half-grown size. Since then the angels have exploded with growth - they are already 4 inches and they are breeding right
there in the community tank (I let them eat the eggs because I don't have the facilities to raise young angels). The zebra have also bred and I am growing some of them in another tank. I have a freshwater drip system that
refreshes the whole tank daily - 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 0-10 nitrate, ph 7.6. They are fed flakes, frozen bloodworms, and frozen brine shrimp.
<All sounds good.>
Yesterday "Blackhawk" (angel) began swimming strangely, "panting", stays near surface, this morning his fins are folded closer to his body. Last night when I fed him he ate a little, although not as voraciously as usual.
All the other fish are still healthy. The only "change" I can think of is I scraped some algae off the glass two days ago - but I do this regularly to no ill effect. What should I do to help Blackhawk?
<There's nothing in what you've told me that's obviously wrong. So you're going to have to go back to basics and tick off a checklist of potential Angelfish issues. First up, check nitrite and/or ammonia to make sure the filter is okay. It's never a bad idea to do a substantial water change when fish are off-colour, just be sure to keep temperature and water chemistry reasonably steady as you do so. Change maybe 25-50% and see what happens.
If the fish perks up, then environment is likely an issue. Of course check the heater is on, and check any extra gizmos like air stones are working too. Next up, check social behaviour. One issue with Angels is they're social when young, territorial when sexually mature. This is why they're best kept singly, in mated pairs, or in groups of six or more. If you keep three or four, any pairs that form are likely to bully the remainder. In groups of six or more this is less of an issue because a single pair can't harass four or more Angels too seriously, and to some degree large numbers can actually form fairly stable social groups (outside of spawning) that doesn't seem to happen when fewer Angels are kept. Finally, look at social behaviour with other fish. While Zebra Danios are reliable community fish
alongside other active species of similar size, they can be quite feisty, both towards each other and anything too slow to get out of their way. Look for evidence of nipping, for example. While the Danio/Angel combination is
usually pretty good, in small groups Danios are less predictable than they are in decent sized schools; say, 10-12 specimens.>
Thanks, John
<Hope this helps, Neale.> 
Distressed Angel Blackhawk - more info    3/14/16

I just sent the question about my angel "Blackhawk". I neglected to also mention that as he hovers near the surface he is also doing a sort of rapid body shimmy. This shimmy, along with his gill panting looks exhausting! See my previous email for full info.
<Again, nothing very specific. Rapid breathing can mean thermal stress, bullying to the point of exhaustion, poisoning (including chemicals in the air), rapid pH changes... you need to review aquarium conditions and the room in its in and come to your own conclusions. Shimmying is somewhat more specific, being typical of fish exposed to the wrong environmental conditions, the classic case being Mollies in inadequately hard freshwater conditions. But again, nothing obvious. I'd refer you back to my original email about what Angels need and why they don't always get along in small groups, and of course remind you that isolating an Angelfish in a "hospital tank" that's too small or poorly filtered will simply make things worse. By and large Angels are hardy fish, but they are classic cichlids in being among the first to become stressed if environmental conditions aren't right. In planted tanks that can include over/mis-use of CO2, so one step is to switch off CO2 for a week and see what happens. Plants'll be fine.
Another problem can be lack of oxygen if there's a lot of organic matter in the tank, including dead plants, and of course the plants themselves use up oxygen by night, so if the Angel looks more stressed in the morning before
the lights go on, that's something to consider. I'd also remind you about biogenic decalcification, which in brightly lit tanks can be massively influential. In short: plants absorb carbonate hardness as a source of carbon for photosynthesis, resulting in much less buffering capacity, and that in turn makes pH crashes likely. Not all plants can do this, but those that can, such as Vallisneria, can be hugely influential on water chemistry. Cheers, Neale.>

Injured angelfish      2/2/16
Hi crew!
I had a bit of an incident last night when my angelfish jumped out of the tank.

I've had this fish for 7 years (he was the first fish i bought) and nothing like this has ever happened. Sadly, I only discovered it had happened when I heard my Siberian husky running around the lounge and came out to investigate to find my beloved angel in his mouth. I don't know how long the angel was out of the water before my dog found him. I was sure he was a goner, so was shocked to find he was still alive after making my dog drop the fish. I immediately put it back in the tank and he started swimming, albeit slowly.
<Ah good>
He looked in quite a lot of shock and was breathing rapidly. I left him in quiet not expecting him to last the night, but 24 hours later he's swimming, eating and behaving as normal.
The reason I am writing is because he sustained a number of injuries in the ordeal. His fins are a bit torn up, he's missing scales and, most concerning, he has a large puncture wound at the base of his tail (pics attached).
<I see these>
The wound was bleeding last night but looks relatively clean now. There's probably some internal injuries as well as my dog was pretty rough with him. Is there anything I can/should do to help his healing process (that won't harm the other fish in the tank)?
<Mmm; yes. I'd treat as if this fish had an infection... as it very likely will develop such. Please read here Re:
I'm worried the wound
will become infected. Or is it best to watch and wait?
<Will become infected; best not to wait, but be pre-emptive>
Thanks for your time,
<And you for sharing. Bob Fenner>

Re: Injured angelfish        2/3/16
Thank you Bob for your sage advice. I've been reading through the angel FAQs you linked as well as some of the articles on treating diseases and am, admittedly, a little overwhelmed.
<Let's review a bit at a time then>
I guess because a lot if this advice pertains to treating advanced infection and I'm not at (and hopefully my poor angel will never get to) that point. I wanted to run it by you before I dose my tank as I don't want to make a rookie error and cause a larger problem.
<Let's hope so>
I see a lot of FAQs recommending against things like Melafix, for example, but the Choose Your Weapon article indicated it can be useful as a preventative.
<Some folks believe so; I do not. These "fixes" can be trouble in terms of modifying water quality, stalling nitrification. At best they're placebos>
That said, it sounds like I'm better off looking for an antibacterial/antibiotic?
<Yes; a real one>
I'm doing a preliminary online shop at my local LFSs and can't find much of those listed in your FAQs (I guess cause I
live in Australia), will any antibiotic do?
<Mmm; no; some are better, more likely applicable... better to use none than just any>
I see it also says many medications are not good with sensitive fish like clown loaches (of which I have a few small ones and i don't have a cycled quarantine tank to put the angel in) so I'm worried about harming them.
<You should be; again, I'd skip adding any real or faux med. here>
Also worried about causing a recycling event in my tank by killing the 'good' bacteria so is there any specific medications to avoid for that?
<All to an extent can pose this issue>
Another article suggested that administering the medication via food was better than immersion, but that getting accurate dosages can be tricky.
<Yes; tis so>
My angel is still very enthusiastically eating (during their feed tonight he raced all the other fish to it and ate first as usual) so food is an option if its safer for everyone involved?
<Better to buy a pre-made medicated (dried) food. Can you obtain those made by Tetra there?>
If it's worth mentioning I've done a 25% water change (don't gravel vac any more since the tank is now planted but if i should to prevent infection please do tell) and am monitoring water conditions closely. Should I do daily water changes or is this only important in cases where a dirty tank has caused the infection?
<I'd stick w/ your routine... Likely weekly, no more than 25% change-outs>
Do you also have any advice of specific symptoms I should be on the look out for, or should I simply be watching out for anything and everything?
<Growths on the wounds; more importantly a cessation of feeding; other aberrant behavior>
Sorry for the barrage of questions from this panicked fish mum!
Thanks as ever for your patience and advice,
<Thank you for your careful reading, questions. BobF>

Re: Injured angelfish       2/4/16
Hi Bob,
Thanks so much for clarifying! I went on a hunt at my all my LFSs and not a lot of luck. All most of them had was MelaFix/pimafix/bettafix. One did have a very small range of medications by Blue Planet, none of them being medicated food (some Googling suggested there is no medicated fish food sold in Australia at all, Tetra brand or otherwise).
<Is possible they are restricted there; or of such small commercial demand that they're not carried>
The only antibiotic medication they had was called Aquari Cycline. It calls itself a broad spectrum antibiotic with tetracycline hydrochloride as its active ingredient. Should I try this?
<Yes; I would. NOTE that it/this (Tet. HCl) WILL change the color of your water... at least slightly orangish... This color will not permanently stain, and will decline with subsequent water changes and the addition of activated carbon>

The guy at my LFS suggested it was fine to use with clown loaches (he also told me MelaFix or a salt bath was better so i don't know).
As for my angel he looks well still. He's eating and behaving like nothing happened. His wound looks much the same, if not a little more closed over (hard to get a good look at it as he always looks at me front on when I go near the tank). His torn fins have almost completely healed. Over what time period should I expect/be checking for infection to occur?
<A few days to a week>
Thanks once more,
<Bob Fenner>

Re: Injured angelfish     2/26/16
Hi Bob (and Crew!),
Its been almost 3 weeks since my angel's little incident. I just wanted to drop an email to thank you once more for your time and advice. My angel appears to have made a full recovery and remains happy and (to my knowledge) healthy -- and as a bonus I have added a lot more knowledge to my fish keeping arsenal once again thanks to you all. Here's a little mobile snap of my angel during feeding time today.
<Ahh; great news all the way around>
Many thanks,
<As many welcomes. Bob Fenner

Chatting re FW Angel injury; using WWM        9/7/15
Hi I have emailed you guys before about my fish dying randomly in my tanks and we haven't had anymore deaths!
<Ah good>
But my favourite angelfish decided to venture into the unknown today where my Pleco likes to be and he got himself stuck in a hole of the log decoration I have in my tank.
He was swimming upwards and if my dad didn't notice I think he would have died pretty soon after. He was wedged in so tightly my dad had to push him out and we took the long out of my tank. He is now swimming on his side and keeps floating to the top of the tank. He has a wound on his belly and I am emailing to see if there is anything at all I can do for him.
<Read: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWAngDisDiagF.htm
and the linked files above>
I get so attached to some of my fish but me and this fish, Gabriel, have such a strong bond. He always swims as close as he can to me when I walk by the tank and he will even go up to the glass if im there and I kiss the glass where he is or whenever I am cleaning the water he wont leave my arm alone and always swims so he is touching me. I love this fish so much and I want to do whatever I can in order to save him. Im crying just writing this and I have no idea what I should do for him.
<Likely the Pleco caused the injury here... Learn to/use WWM before writing us. We're not a chat service. Bob Fenner>

Angelfish fins are ragged       6/10/15
Hello, I have a 10 gallon tank, with 2 Angels, 2 Pink Kissing Gouramis, and 1 Plecostomus.
<This aquarium is literally ten times too small. Pair of Angels? Twenty gallons, alongside various little fish (Corydoras for example). Kissing Gouramis, which get to about 8 inches/20 cm as adults, they're more suited to tanks upwards of 55 gallons, plus difficult to feed as well, so not for beginners. Plecostomus? Massive fish. 18 inches/45 cm within 2-3 years, and easily 8 inches/20 cm in the first year. Minimum tank size 55 gallons, and that's only if you generously filter the water unless you enjoy seeing bucket loads of faeces floating around. Realistically, 75 gallons upwards. Mix them all together, and we're talking about a jumbo fish community, 100 gallons upwards.>
The tank has been set up for about 2 months. I have a water heater (water stays around 80F), and a Whisper Filter, which I change filters 1X/month.
<"Change" or clean the filter? You shouldn't change biological media once the tank is set up. Rinse in a bucket of aquarium water, then return to the filter. The only filter media that need replacing monthly are carbon and zeolite (often this latter is sold as "ammonia remover") neither of which you need. Biological media is all you need for plain vanilla freshwater community tanks.>
I have added the recommended amt. of AquaSafe when setting tank up and also add during water changes which I have done 1X/week.
The Angels, "Ghost" [a black&silver striped Angelfish] & "Shadow"[a all dark black Angelfish] have been in the tank since I set it up (2months).
<Nice looking fish.>
Ghost has grown at a faster rate than Shadow. I assumed this meant one was the dominant one.
<Almost certainly correct. Angels are sociable when young, but become territorial as they mature. Unless you have a mated pair -- and no, you can't sex them -- then it's pot luck whether two specimens will coexist. Two females usually will, but two males won't, and the usual story is one bullies the other, and the weak one at the very least becomes stunted from lack of food, but often gets killed. Angels are best kept singly, as mated pairs, or in groups of at least 6 specimens that allows aggression to be diluted.>
The Gouramis I added a month after I set up the tank (1 month ago). The fish seemed to get along fine, the Gouramis chase each other around the tank most of the day
<Again, not social when mature. "Kissing" is actually fighting.>
and the Angelfish have paired up (Ghost always being the dominant one of the two) and follow each other around
<Do observe who follows who. If it's mutual, sometimes Ghost leading, and sometimes Shadow, they may well be a pair. Females grow slightly more slowly than males, and on top of that there is variation in growth rate and adult size, just as with humans. But if one is always in front and the other always following it, the one doing the following may in fact be chasing the one in front, in which case aggression could be occurring. To repeat: Angels are social when young, not as adults, at least not under aquarium conditions.>
while the plecostomus sucks no pun intended, until lately, Ghost is acting more "macho" or aggressive or territorial (not sure which one) towards all the fish but the plecostomus, (I assume because he/she stays out of his/her way) but especially most towards the smaller Angel (Shadow).
<See above.>
Ghost seems to bully Shadow especially around feeding time [trying] to make sure Shadow doesn't get any food (possibly the reason one is bigger than the other?) A week ago I noticed Shadow (the black Angel) had what looks like nips on his fins. Today he(she)? has even more ragged fins. I'm concerned and know this is not right. Please help, I don't want any of my fish to suffer! R.S.V.P. A.S.A.P! Thanks for any suggestions/info.
-Holly & Ivey​
<Raggedy fins are a sign of fighting. Next stage will be Finrot and/or Fungus. Move one of them to another aquarium -- not a breeding trap! -- and provided the raggedy one isn't infected already, it'll get better. This tank is too small anyway, so retire the 10 gallon to hospital and breeding tank purposes, and go invest in something MUCH bigger. Alternatively, return some fish, and keep a single Angel in something sensible, 20 gallons for example. Thanks for sending in a nice and simple question! Not often things are cut and dried, but the problems are obvious here, so solving them will be straightforward. Cheers, Neale.>

Help with Angelfish issue? /RMF       4/18/15
Good Afternoon, Been trying to figure out what is happening with my FW angelfish.. I bought 10 or so Blue gene fish back in July of 2014.. At about 1 a month they have become sick and died.. Many with weird sores at the base of the dorsal fin and others with them through out their bodies..
Some have just gotten bloating and died. I have treated with general cure, Prazi, metro, metro flake for possible hex. I have 1 of those fish left and a few of my other angels in there are acting weird now, staying in the corner breathing heavy.. The Tetras, Corys, Bristlenoses are fine.
<Mmm; will send this on to Neale for his independent response; but want to ask for myself: Have you contacted the vendor re these losses? What re the system, water quality tests? Bob Fenner>
Re: Help with Angelfish issue?       4/18/15

I have talked to the vendor. They had me try the metro but that was about it. Its a heavily planted 55 gallon. The parameters are good.. 0 ammonia, 0 Nitrite, 5 Nitrate.. Wc 40-50% at least once a week.
<All good>
I attached a few pictures
<Mmm; the marks, apparent bloating, eyes bulging in some specimens... Do you save up the new water... Am wondering if emphysematosis (the "bends") might be at play here. BobF>


Help with Angelfish issue? /Neale's go        4/18/15
Good Afternoon, Been trying to figure out what is happening with my FW angelfish.. I bought 10 or so Blue gene fish back in July of 2014.. At about 1 a month they have become sick and died.. Many with weird sores at the base of the dorsal fin and others with them through out their bodies..
Some have just gotten bloating and died. I have treated with general cure, Prazi, metro, metro flake for possible hex. I have 1 of those fish left and a few of my other angels in there are acting weird now, staying in the corner breathing heavy.. The Tetras, Corys, Bristlenoses are fine.
<Jonathan, while I'd like to help, there's nothing here that's of use to me. How big's the tank? What are the water chemistry parameters? What's the water quality in terms of nitrite or ammonia? How frequently do you do
water changes?
Basically, I need some info here (and I don't mean words like "fine" to describe water quality). Assuming you got a bunch of sibling fish from one breeder, there's a good chance they're inbred already, lowering their robustness (something we see in virtually all these "fad" Angelfish varieties such as Koi Angels) but in itself this doesn't mean they're doomed to die. So something is definitely wrong with your system that triggered what would appear to be a bacterial infection, perhaps Mycobacteria. It's time to be objective, and review your set-up. Ten inbred young Angels would need careful nurturing, probably in a clean hospital tank until they were at least half adult size. Zero ammonia, zero
nitrite, and nitrate below 20 mg/l. Beyond that, a lot depends upon all the usual factors required when caring for Angels, but more so, since these fish aren't as robust as, say, old school Silver Angels. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Help with Angelfish issue?

I have talked to the vendor. They had me try the metro but that was about it. Its a heavily planted 55 gallon. The parameters are good.. 0 ammonia, 0 Nitrite, 5 Nitrate.. Wc 40-50% at least once a week. I attached a few pictures
<Water quality sounds okay. But how different was your water chemistry to that of the breeders? Your heavily planted tank... does it use CO2? Not always a good combo with delicate fish because of the risk of less than stable oxygenation and pH levels... would settle in new livestock of this type, delicacy in their own, clean aquarium until at least half size so
you're sure they've put on weight and acquired some degree of health.
Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Help with Angelfish issue?       4/18/15
her water is 7.8 and rock hard Im told.
Mine is water is 6.8 and 1 degree total hardness

<Well, how did you acclimate your new livestock to the change in pH and, just as importantly, hardness? While I doubt this was the reason for their death, it's possible it exacerbated any underlying problems.>
no C02
<Fair enough. Well, my money would be on some sort of environmental stress alongside a microbial (perhaps Mycobacteria) infection. Next time, don't expose the fish to sudden/dramatic changes in pH and hardness; do quarantine sensitive livestock for 6 weeks, minimum, and in the case of young Angels, the longer the better. Angels ship poorly at the "coin size" or smaller stages, but become a lot more rugged above 3 inches/8 cm.>
<Welcome. Neale.>
Re: Help with Angelfish issue?       4/18/15

Thank you for the help
I just drip acclimated.
Any suggestions to help the fish that are left? Thanks
<So far the remaining fish go, since you've made the change in terms of water chemistry, there's no point trying to undo that. So instead focus on optimising water quality, and if possible, and it wouldn't stress them too much, perhaps move them to a quarantine tank you can keep spotlessly clean.
I'd be thinking something around 20 gallons, minimal (easy clean!) decor, no substrate, limited/no lighting, some floating Indian Fern if you do have lighting (Angels love this stuff, and it sucks up nitrate!), same water chemistry as main tank, and equipped with mature air-powered sponge filter.
No Angel likes fighting against a water current, and youngsters can be exhausted by it. So air-power is always the best choice where practical. In short, keep the remaining youngsters somewhere clean, shady, and with a gentle current. Offer them numerous small meals (4-6 meals is the ideal for Angels below, say, an inch in length, and even under two inches, I'd be offering 3-4 small meals rather than just one big dinner). If you leave them in the main tank, check they're getting enough to eat, not struggling against the water current, have plenty of shade and shelter, and aren't being harassed by tetras, danios and other hyperactive species. Cheers, Neale.>  

Care of blinded angelfish     1/13/15
Hello! I am hoping you can offer some advice or suggestions. My query is rather unique. I have an angelfish whose eyes were pecked out by her mate once they began spawning. I would guesstimate that I have had both for around a year and a half. Although he would aggravate her around the time it was to spawn the violent attack happened out of the blue. They resided in a 40 gallon high tank with some smaller tetras and Corys.
<Ahh; an example of why angels, like discus, should be raised in small groups... like six individuals; to diffuse such aggression>
The tank is not over-crowded, but because the angelfish were still growing the tank probably shouldn’t be added to. The tank itself has been established for over two years.
<I see>
I came home one evening and saw the female angelfish was hiding. Closer inspection showed that both of her eyes had been pecked out! I immediately put up a divider to keep him away and began to seed a separate tank for her. While still in the large tank, but protected somewhat (the male was very aggressive in breaking through the divider to get to her), the female began to rely on me to hand feed her every night. I couldn’t think of any other way since she could not see to eat and she would have starved. Eventually I was able to move her to her own tank. It is a 10 gallon, which I know is way too small for an angel, but in considering her disability she was able to figure out the dimensions and swim freely. The tank is very basic and only has substrate, a small plastic plant, and one Bloodfin tetra, all of which I used to help seed from the large tank. My little angelfish adapted exceptionally well in her new surroundings, finally relaxed, and for many months we met every night for her feedings and I began to refer to her as my “roommate” (her tank is in my room). As soon as she heard me open the lid she would swim to the top, mouth open, and I would use tweezers to feed her. Because she is so messy (understandably so) we lose a significant portion of flake
<I'd use a good pelleted form: Hikari, Spectrum... more discrete, nutritious>
to the bottom. I have had to be diligent in vacuuming the gravel and water changes (at least weekly if not more) because of excess food and my concern for infection. Although I am aware they prefer schools, I have opted to keep the Bloodfin in with her since it does help with some of the missed flakes of food and they seem to be okay together.
<Some tropical snails would help>
My plan was to eventually put him back into the big tank and replace him with a few Corys as a cleaning crew. I have to admit that sometimes after a long, tiring day suddenly remembering at the last minute that I had to once again take the time to hand feed this little girl occasionally got old. Yet once I opened her lid it literally appeared as if she was excited for her dinner and I had to appreciate the trust level she gave me. She eventually allowed me to use my hand to maneuver her toward my other hand from which I fed. She fattened up, grew, and flourished for months. Pretty cool.
Recently though, one of her eyes became hugely engorged and she slowly lost interest in food. I tried different flakes, bloodworms, brine shrimp, etc. The Bloodfin was fine so I was convinced it wasn’t parasitic, so I figured it was likely an infection and opted to treat her according to the directions with tetracycline. Her eye has improved tremendously and there is no longer any swelling. The problem is that she is still dying and continues to lie on the bottom of the tank. My theory is that her eye was equally swollen on the inside affecting her ability to eat. Even when she still showed a little interest it appeared that the she could not swallow food once it was in her mouth and spit it back out. Even now during treatment when I open the lid she often swims to the top as if she’s hungry but does not have the strength to feed (my opinion) and immediately settles on the bottom. I believe she is dying now not because of her eye, but rather because of starvation. If she could see it might be a little different. I thought if I could in some way get even a minute amount of nutrition into her she might then have the strength to feed normally (our normal) just enough to get stronger – if in fact this is the case. I came up with the idea of putting some of her tank water into a clear container and adding a very large portion of flake and stirring until it breaks down. I then carefully scope her into the container and allow her a few minutes in there. My theory is that in her breathing or gulping she might ingest just enough fortified water to give her a little strength. Haven’t had much change, but she is no worse then she was a week ago either. This method is also a huge waste of flake. I don’t keep the flake/water slurry around because any longer and there might be too much of a temp change and I fear the food will make the water rancid. If she’s not ready to give up then I have to hang in there and do what I can. I know that a more reasonable individual might have immediately put her to sleep as soon as she became blind, but I just didn’t have the heart to do it. I figure if she can survive having her eyes pecked out then I’ll do what I can. The male on the other hand will have a long life of celibacy (jerk). Anyway, the blindness complicates things so normal feeding doesn’t work. The Marineland Tropical flakes seem to work best because the sturdier wafer shape structure allows hand feeding with a tweezers. I know it’s not the best diet but this situation is a little unique so the care protocol is too. Prior to her decline she enjoyed occasional bloodworms as well, but I didn’t want to overdo those too much. She wanted nothing to do with any veggies, which actually would have been so much easier to hold on to with tweezers. I haven’t checked perimeters the last few days but they were excellent prior to adding the antibiotics which created some minor changes, which I would imagine is normal.
Water hardness is always a little up as is common in this area. I was always worried about infection because of her eyes so I kept her tank pretty tidy. Any suggestions to get some nutrition into her?
<Gingerly force-feeding small pellets... is about it. Adding supplements to the water won't help, as freshwater fishes don't drink their environment...>
I keep waiting for her to pass but everyday she keeps hanging in there. I won’t give up on her unless she does.
Thank you and warmest regards!
<IF you deem this fish's life has been too greatly marginalized, DO read Neale's piece re euthanization: http://wetwebmedia.com/euthanasia.htm
Bob Fenner>
Re: Care of blinded angelfish      1/27/15

Hi Bob,
I just wanted to drop a note to thank you for your response. It was much appreciated. Unfortunately my brave, little angelfish gave up the fight last weekend. It is amazing how much a routine is missed once it is gone. I was prepared to make the dreaded clove oil purchase, but she saved me the trip.
I am in the process of re-circulating her 10 gallon,
<Too small a volume for Pterophyllum>

getting rid of the old antibiotics, and building up some beneficial bacteria. I found a breeder not too long ago who raises non-GMO German Blue Rams.

I have had some previous luck in having them pair up and even spawn, but in a community tank the Corys took care of that clutch of eggs. With the well water Rams are simply a losing battle. I am going to take a different route and quit fighting with it and just go to RO water for the ram tank and see how that goes.
<Do add some mineral back; i.e. don't use just straight RO>
Drift wood softened the water before, yet the ph remained high (don't quite understand the chemistry behind that). I know they like high temps and soft water so having a tank exclusive for them might offer more results. Beautiful creatures.
On another note...I have a small school of 4 panda Corys in my community tank. To my surprise the other day I noticed some movement and found two baby pandas! I think I was more consumed with my angelfish's needs that i didn't give the other tank the attention I normally do. Talk about dumb luck - Couldn't have made that happen if I tried! lol. It was a nice surprise after losing my little friend.
Thank you again for your response!
Barbara Ofzky
<Thank you for your upbeat sharing! Bob Fenner>

Angelfish problems     1/10/15
Hi guys, hope this email reaches you!
<Yes indeed.>
So I've been having angel fish problems for over the last 6-7 months say, and the condition is stable, but I just wanna know what's going on with my little fella!
First things first, I'm from the UK, been keeping fish for around 5-6 years but never really got into the scientific side of things.
<Half the fun!>
Never had water problems and I'm good with my changes. I'm at university at the moment so doing water changes only once a month (70% at a time), this is all I can do as I'm only back home once a month, and parents haven't a clue! I knew this would be a problem so I ripped out my internal filtration and external 1400 litres per hour beasts in, so filtration wise - were all good! Ohh, tanks a 4 ft 150 litre by the way!
<A decent size.>
So ages back, my 4 Angels were always fighting, pairing off or whatever I don't know but I was getting worried, it was always one fish that was being picked on.
<Indeed. In tanks this size I would keep EITHER a singleton OR a mated pair (tricky, but sometimes sold, or you can extract from a group of six juveniles you raise). Your tank is plenty big enough for 6 juveniles, but as time passes it should become clear that two (hopefully a pair) rule the roost. Remove the surplus. Angels are ever-popular, so rehoming, even selling, subadult Angels is not a problem.>
I added more bog wood and plants in the tank to add more hiding spaces but this didn't really work. The fish became ill, really ill and developed these Black dots/worm things on him. (Some were dots (holes) others were like a black wormy thing). Anyway, I came home from work and he was floating at the top of the tank and I thought he was dead, I took him out immediately and put him in a 26 degrees centigrade quarantine tank (the big tanks running at around 23/4 degrees).
<A bit cool for Angels; they're hothouse flowers -- 25 C is okay, but 26-28 C optimal.>
In the quarantine tank I put in some internal bacterial medicine, cus all I had read up on stated that this type of medicine should work, so he was on this and I was doing water changes and he was stable, not better or worse just stable. I did some more reading and I came across Epsom salts, so I went a gave him some salt baths for 5 minutes at a time, and this was no
harm to him, he wasn't flipping out or anything. And after about a week or two on the medication and the salt baths he got better, started eating again and being responsive, but he still had a black mark over his left eye and it was almost merging into his eye, anyway, he was cool, eating and stuff but his eye was turning black and he had like a film over it, it looked painful, but he was showing no signs, however his swimming got bad.
He was swimming all over the place, on his back, upside down, round in circles... And I have no idea why?!
<Likely physical damage to the eye, perhaps blindness (Angels often bite the eyes from other Angels), and when they lose an eye, their swimming goes haywire until they get used to being one-sided.>
More weeks passed and I was doing weekly changes to his water and brought off medication and still eating all good and the water was good, and his eye got that bad that it sort of ate away at it's self. It hasn't dropped out so to speak but it's just an inward dome and white. And his swimming still hasn't improved. These black things have gone but his swimming is that bad that I could not put him back in the community tank cus he will be picked on cus he can't swim properly, he just does his own thing and floats all over the place, but as soon as foods involved he can make himself nice and erect, and swim just like any other normal fish would do.
<See above.>
Now I do not think my fish is in harm, his fins aren't rotting and he has a healthy breathing pattern, both of his 'feelers' are going off to the same side under his body, imagine this is how they should be:
Instead there like this:
<Physical damage, I fear.>
Now should I correct that so it goes their her way? Could this be affecting his balance hence why he's swimming funny? Or is he floating because he can't see and to him it's normal?
He's had a pretty tough life being bullied and that, and it's not his fault, so for as long as he's in my care I want to make him as comfortable as possible! Only problem is being at university stops me from doing super regular changes. what advice can you give to give this fish the happy life he deserves??
Thank you for reading and your time,
<Fundamentally adult Angels can only be kept (reliably) as singletons, mated pairs, or groups of 6 or more specimens. Your one-eyed Angel should eventually settle down, and could make a fine addition to a community tank where he'll be kept with smaller fish. As top-dog, he'll be happy. The other Angels can be rearranged or rehomed as indicated above: singly, pairs, or groups of 6+ specimens. Cheers, Neale.>

Angelfish deaths     10/29/14
I have a 75 gallon tank that had six rainbow fish. One male Boesemanni rainbow with a female, three turquoise rainbows and one plain Australian rainbow.
<Indeed. I believe we've discussed this tank before.>
The female Boesemanni died of what looked like fungus a few weeks ago, the rest are doing great.
<Good. Generally a reliable species in moderately hard water.>
We went away for 10 days and the pet sitter fed the fish four times in that time period, no overfeeding.
<Still, I'd not feed the fish at all for such a short period of time. No real need. Healthy, well-fed adult fish can go weeks without food. In a planted tank even nominally predatory Angels will nibble at algae and soft
plant leaves if they're sufficiently hungry, which is probably good for them!>
I had a large black angel who I noticed was starting to show signs of cotton like fungus on the day we left. He/ She died a few days later, along with a much smaller angel who was dead when we got home. The last angel in the tank was moving slow when we got back and just died this evening without showing any other symptoms. It seems that when the large black angel went the others followed. Before we left all the fish were zipping around and doing fine. I think maybe the angels all died of the same thing without showing the cotton stuff on them.
<Was it on the fins or mouth? Classic aquarium fish fungus may appear anywhere but usually starts on fins because it sets in after physical damage. It's just possible the Angels are being harassed someway by the
Rainbows, whether deliberately or merely spooked by them as they dart about. Farmed Angels are normally pretty phlegmatic, but if the aquarium is very open or very bright, they may become more nervous than usual. Then there's Columnaris, so called "Mouth Fungus" despite being a bacterial infection. It doesn't exactly look like the classic fluffy white threads of fish fungus. It's more often greyish slime or growths, sort of halfway
between fungus and Finrot. It is treated with antibacterial medications.
Although it can be treated successfully, it's notoriously persistent, especially in bad cases. Luckily, it's pretty rare.>
Or maybe the rainbows harassed the smaller angel when the big guy died, I don't know. I always like to know what causes deaths in the tank, but I guess sometimes you can't
<Quite so. Where there's no obvious explanation, my advice would be sit back and do nothing (apart from, of course, keep an eye on water quality and chemistry). If the Rainbowfish are otherwise fine and happy, leave the tank for a few weeks to see if anything else happens. You might decide to avoid Angels, or avoid Angels from that particular retailer, or go looking for locally bred ones. The Angel/Rainbow combination is quite widely done, and usually works, so you may have been unlucky. On the other hand, you might choose to try something else, such as Blue Acara or Lace Gouramis, as your midwater specimen fish. Indeed, even some of the peaceful Central American cichlids are an option, Rainbow Cichlids being one combo I've seen, and if you have space and a sandy substrate, even Firemouths could work!>
<Cheers, Neale>
Re: Angelfish deaths     10/30/14

The fungus was all over the body in both cases. Should I treat the whole tank for fungus? No one else seems to have symptoms
<Methylene Blue is tolerated well by fishes, so I'd be tempted to use this for the whole tank if you suspect a fungal infection (as opposed to Columnaris or Finrot). But you might opt to go for something like KanaPlex
that treats a wider range of potential pathogens, if aren't 100% sure it's fungus you're dealing with. Cheers, Neale.>

Freshwater Angelfish Questions ­ 10/22/14
I am writing on behalf of a customer who is having issues keeping Angelfish. It begins with Popeye in both eyes, and then the Angel's stomachs begin to swell up. There is no notable pineconing of the scales, and the fish continue to eat. The swelling is even on either side. The customer is concerned that issues have stemmed from possibly overfeeding dry AquaDine formula, or that there is something occurring in the tank.
<Possibly, but doesn't sound very likely. A modern dried flake food should make a perfectly suitable staple diet for common community fish such as Angels.>
The tank is a 90 Gallon that's been established for a little over 2 years.
Temperature is 80 (he read that's what Angels like).
<Indeed, though warm water needs improved circulation to keep oxygen levels up. The warmer the water, the lower the stocking density.>
Current inhabitants include 5 Black Neon Tetras and 3 White Skirt Tetras.
Water changes are performed monthly in the amount of 25-30%. Today's water test results:
Nitrate = 20
Nitrite = 0
Total Hardness - 150
Chlorine = 0
Alkalinity = 180
pH Freshwater = 7.8
Ammonia = 0
<Okay, but the water is a bit on the hard side.>
He added 6 juvenile Angels in May, 2013. The first Angel died on its own in early May. It had PopEye and a swollen belly. Another Angel died on its own shortly after the first. Over the course of a year, the remaining 4 Angels died.
<I see.>
After those died, he added an adult female who lived with an adult male in a 72 Gallon display tank. They were in that tank for over 3 years and had no issues during that time. The male died of undetermined causes, and eventually we decided to sell the female. She died within two days of being added to the customer's tank. Per policy on refunds, I tested his water. I don't have the exact parameters, but according to our customer notes, it was good enough for us to warrant a replacement of the fish (Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate less than 40, pH varies per fish).
<All sounds fine.>
He medicated the tank from 10/1 thru 10/9 with Melafix
do point him in the direction of worthwhile medications such as the antibiotics.>
& did a 33% water change on the 10th. He's also added a light dose of Aquarium Salt.
<Does little or even makes things worse. Do remind him salt is a medication for very specific situations where freshwater fish are being kept. It is not a cure-all.>
None of the remaining 8 fish ( 3 Tetra Skirt Long Fin & 5 Black Neon Tetra ) are eating much if anything. The Black Neon used swim all over & pretty energetic but now they are hanging near the top.
<Environment is the obvious thing to review where a bunch of fish are getting sick for no obvious reasons. Do a substantial water change, clean the filter to ensure a good throughput of water, check stocking, maybe
lower the waterline to improve "splashing" which mixes oxygen and water better. If it were me, I'd strip the tank down and give it a good clean. Keep the filter running while doing so, but change as much water as
practical. Re-acclimate the fish as if you'd just bought them, using the drip method or similar, across 30-60 min.s. Remove anything old and decaying (e.g., bogwood) and especially clean the gravel (deep gravel beds can hide all kinds of problems if there aren't burrowing snails and/or vigorous plants to oxygenate the gravel). If problems persist, even with a deep clean, or such seems unwarranted, then some sort of biological problem might be suspected. Velvet often affects the gills first, causing respiratory distress, hence "gasping" behaviour, even where the telltale golden/white dusting isn't visible. Many good medications exist.>
Any ideas?
<See above. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Angelfish and other assorted deaths.     10/12/14
No need any more, they're dead.
No other fish seem to be sick, so now all I can really do is not add any new fish for the next few months.
And I don't even know what the sickness was.
<... did you happen to read on WWM re Pterophyllum diseases?>

Thank you for your help even though it ended badly :(
e: Angelfish and other assorted deaths.      10/13/15
I have read most of the links at the top of the page of "http://wetwebmedia.com/FWAngParasitDisF.htm"
Inc "FAQs on Angelfish Disease" and "FAQs on Angelfish Disease by Category "Am I reading the wrong links?
<Ah, no; these are them... and naught "jumped out"? Became live to your consciousness? Am thinking now that perhaps this is an example of "Angelfish Plague" of olde (the Dinoflagellate Octomita/Hexamita)... that
years back and in smaller, oscillating cycles kills off masses of Pterophyllum. That I recall though, you hadn't added any new angels... nor mixed in water from a system with them>
Nothing matches the symptoms that mine were having, yes, they match with a lot of not eating / aiming upwards, but there was never fin clamping, or excessive slime coat, or sores or marks or spots, not velvet as there was no "dusting" on any fish.
No worms under the skin, or in the fish itself. Gills looked pale, but not damaged.
<The pale gills... maybe be indicative of a poor water quality issue...>
Water had high nitrates,
<How high? More than 40 ppm?
This could definitely impugn their health, hemolyze their RBCs; cause the gills to appear exsanguinated>
which I read on WWM that angels are affected by this, but it managed to kill my old angel which I've had for years in the exact same water conditions.
It was also affecting other species, not specifically angels.
Unfortunately I think what ever it is is still in the tank too, as I had to remove a dead molly earlier this evening, it looked bloated so I gave it a little squeeze in case there were worms / internal parasites or just
blocked up with poo, but it had babies instead.
Got a quote from a local fish dr, as 3 local aquariums have no idea what the issue is, buying my own microscope would be cheaper!
<Ah yes... and there are some real bargains nowayears... I have a conventional light transmission one and a more used QX series... USB hook up, two light sources...>
I'm feeling like you're pointing out something glaringly obvious and I'm missing it, sorry.
<Wish I knew more certainly... was indeed hoping that by your reading you would self-discover the root cause/s here.
Sorry as well. BobF>
Re: Angelfish and other assorted deaths.   10/15/14

Angelfish virus was one of the first 5 things that I thought it might have been, and I was horrified as this would of likely destroyed my tank. But from the little information that I can find on "Angelfish virus" I don't
think that it's a cross species virus?
<Not a virus, but the Protozoan mentioned>
Also lacks the clamped fins, and the often described "Dripping" slime coat.
I've noticed I have a molly that is skinny as a twig, so I'll keep an eye on him, and a juvenile angel behaving in a very shy fashion, hopefully it's not a recurrence.
"and naught "jumped out"? " Nothing that matched my symptoms, trouble breathing and sitting at the top of the water is surprisingly common it would seem, now I'm starting to realise why it's so hard to work out the
<Not w/o sampling (and often killing specimens) and microscopic examination>
Regarding the nitrates, it's hard to tell, I have an API liquid test kit, in date, which reads blood red, not matching to the chart.
<Too high... see WWM re>
And other test kits which state less than 10ppm, the tank is heavily planted.
<Mixed info. B>

Angelfish sick      9/25/14
I have been searching for answers to my problem nothing is found no matter were I go or look. My angelfish look like they have a cloudy or mold on there skin, not moving that much like the usually do it passes from one angelfish to another after one dies and on some of them they don't have the same appearance's but die? My pH is 7.6 ammonia is 0 nitrates 0 nitrites r 0 and still lost in this whole problem I used amox and a few other things but still no go!
<Do need some information on the environment. While Slime Disease (also known as Costia) is one possibility, irritation that causes mucous production is more likely, particularly if a whole series of fish have died. To recap: Angels need a largish tank (20 gallons for one or a mated pair, 50+ gallons for a group of six) that has been cycled and running awhile (6 weeks, minimum, and ideally a couple months). Water chemistry shouldn't be extreme (farmed Angels are okay between 2-20 degrees dH, pH 6-8) but variation in pH is bad. Likewise water temperature should be stable and preferably a bit warm, 24-28 C/75-82 F. Diet should be varied, no feeder guppies please, but based instead on good quality flake or pellets such as Hikari Cichlid Gold. Angels are delicate when very young; avoid specimens less than 1.5 inches in diameter if at all possible. Some varieties are distinctly sensitive compared to the others, with Koi and all-black Angels being among the more temperamental. By contrast, old fashioned marble and gold Angels seem to be pretty good, as are standard silver Angels. Acclimate all new specimens to your local water chemistry carefully (across an hour or more, e.g., using the drip system).
Cheers, Neale.>

Angelfish with problems   9/22/14
Found your website by accident, LUCKY me. Had been searching for answers with a parasite problem on Angelfish.
<Mmm; please send this and all future petfish corr. to Crew@WetWebMedia.com>
In February 2014 "Cindy Cotton" asked for your help with her Angelfish parasite problem. I am
glad that she added a photo of the Angelfish. Can you please let me know how this fish fared, did he shed the parasites or did he die.
<Have no idea...>
Since about 4 weeks ago I am battling the same problem with 2 Angels.
Angels have the same white pimple spots in the eye areas coming and going + one Angel also has a 6mm long wormlike extension growth (worm ??) above his mouth.
Is it a growth or is it a tough to get rid off parasite?
<Can't tell w/o sampling, looking under a microscope>
What should I do next to solve the problem?
<The above...>

I treated with Copper - with Ick meds - with FLUKE meds, to no avail.
<May well not be pathogenic (i.e. caused by an organism); but something amiss with the system, water quality>
Angels are active in a
quarantine tank - are feeding (I feed parasite fight. food) - and act normal.
I would appreciate your help
and thank you in advance.
~ ~ >((((°> ~ ~ ~
<°))))< ~ ~
<Umm; data re water tests, other organisms present... can't tell even if this is marine or freshwater. Bob Fenner>
Angelfish with problems   9/22/14

Dear Mr. Fenner,
Tank is a 55 gallon, freshwater planted community tank set up about 4 years ago.
The only Newbie has been a sealed package of "mini hair grass planted in jell". This is how it is packed from the company selling aquarium plants.
I purchased the pack of hair grass at Pet-land in Vestal, NY.
No new fish - nothing new.
<I see in your pic a mention of using an Algae Tab... what is this chemically? Most are toxic and should be avoided>
And all of a sudden one of the Angel was in hiding on the bottom in the back of the tank. After a few days I netted him and put him along with his equally size Angel in a quarantine tank.
The growth or worm or whatever it is has not gone away after all the treatments I put the sm. quarantine tank thru.
Don't know what else to try.
<I'd place a cup or so of rinsed (tapwater is fine) GAC (activated carbon) in your filter/flow path. A bag of Chemi-pure would be my choice. BobF>

Angelfish with problems   9/23/14
Dear Mr. Fenner,
Tank is a 55 gallon, freshwater planted community tank set up about 4 years ago.
The only Newbie has been a sealed package of "mini hair grass planted in jell". This is how it is packed from the company selling aquarium plants.
I purchased the pack of hair grass at Pet-land in Vestal, NY.
No new fish - nothing new.
<Okay. Understood>
I see in your pic a mention of using an Algae Tab... what is this chemically? Most are toxic and should be avoided
*ALGAE-tabs, as I call them, are the veggie/algae disks for the bottom feeders - nothing chemical
<Ahh! A food item. Yes; these are fine... was thinking you meant a chemical algicide>
And all of a sudden one of the Angel was in hiding on the bottom in the back of the tank. After a few days I netted him and put him along with his equally size Angel in a quarantine tank.
<Likely this is best; as long as good and stable water quality can be maintained there>
The growth or worm or whatever it is has not gone away after all the treatments I put the sm. quarantine tank thru.
Don't know what else to try.
<Nothing... Again; I suspect this is NOT a pathogen, but some sort of mucus accumulation from "stress"...>
I'd place a cup or so of rinsed (tapwater is fine) GAC (activated carbon) in your filter/flow path. A bag of Chemi-pure would be my choice. BobF
**What is "Chemi-pure" - don't know the product - will check out on the internet - what will it do?
<Remove many types of possible to probable water quality issues. You can simply search on WWM... the tool is on every page... re GAC, the Boyd Enterprises product>
***I wish the Angel would hold still long enough for me to take a photo to show you what I mean by the worm-like extension above his mouth.
<Me too. Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Black angelfish not healing      8/23/14
The one large black angelfish in our 75 gallon has a white mark around the top of it's mouth. We went away for a week and got a pet sitter for the cat and asked them to feed the fish with instructions on how much to feed.
<Unless you're gone more than a week, don't bother having fish "fed" during vacations. Healthy fish can go a couple weeks, easy, without food. Big fish (like Plecs) even longer.>
When we came back the cat was fine, but the fish tank was REALLY cloudy and dirty. We had to do a 90% water change.
<I bet.>
When we came back the black angel had this white marking around the top of the mouth with a bit of red, nothing fungus like. It has been nearly six weeks and there is no change. The fish is eating normally. I realize that black angelfish heal slowly and someone told me that they are so inbred that they partially can't digest food.
<Not true. But it is a fair point to say that some fancy Angelfish are noticeably less robust than the wild-type, and Black Angels have had a bit of a reputation for being more difficult to keep than other varieties.>
Is there anything to be done about this like a temp change or meds or salt?
<Review Columnaris in the first instance; often called Mouth Fungus. It's a bacterial infection, not uncommon in fish but often overlooked by fishkeepers who tend to recognise Finrot and regular Fungus without problems. Can be tricky to treat, though some of that may be because people use an antifungal when they should be using some sort of antibiotic or antibacterial. You might also review viral infections such as Lymphocystis. These are rare, but usually distinctive. Very rarely do they kill the fish, but they can be disfiguring to some degree. However, do also appreciate that some wounds (just as with humans) leave scars, and these may be different colours to the original. So if the wound is clean/covered with
healthy skin, and the fish is in otherwise good health, you may simply have to wait for nature to take its course. As with us, such scars may heal, but it can take months, even years.>
Thank you
<Most welcome, Neale.>

male black veil angel with exophthalmia    5/24/14
I have a male black angelfish that has been without its mate (accidental entrapment following skirmish with male) for about 1 year. The only other fish in the 30 gallon tank are 2 bushy-nose Ancistrus. The exophthalmia began about 4 days ago in the right eye, and then progressed to the left.
There are no other obvious symptoms, no lethargy, skin and fins clear, fins not folded, no abdominal swelling, no raised scales. The fish seems to have a normal appetite. The condition has advanced to the point where I fear it will lose vision, or even its eyes. I have tried API fungus cure, melafix and Pimafix,
<These last two are worse than worthless. Placebos that mal-affect nitrification>
and Metronidazole, with no relief to the symptoms.
<Not curable w/ the above>
Can this be due to a brain tumor or brain parasite?
Is there anything I can try?
<Yes... READ here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwpopeyefaqs.htm>
Might this be a genetically induced condition?
<Yes; possible>
In another tank, I have another pair of black veils, and the male is this on's sibling. I see no problems there, except that they won't breed.
<Bob Fenner>

Clip broken ventral fin on angelfish?       4/25/14
I have what I think is a simple question. I purchased a 1yr old blue angelfish, p. scalare, and in netting it, I broke one of its ventral fins (feelers), more than half way up, right where it thickens. It is now "waving" at various acute angles, sometimes even completely folded up against itself.. I know broken-off ventrals are generally not a problem, but my question: should I clip off the broken part?
<I would not clip it; nor do anything treatment-wise. Though a thickening may form that is permanent; this area, ray, may well heal in time; add to the fish's stability, quality of life>
Thanks so much,
Bill M.
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Re: Clip broken ventral fin on angelfish?    5/22/14
Dear Bob,
Thanks for advising not to clip the broken ventral fin on my angel. It has healed up perfectly, except for a small scar, just as you said.
A pic is attached. It is the left ventral, you can see the scar just where the fin thickens.
Thanks again,
<Ah, very nice. Thank you for this follow-up. BobF>

Neale: urgent help Angelfish swimming circles      3/29/14
Hi Neale, hope you are well, you have helped me a lot in the past, let me remind you what I have:
53 gallon / 200 liters community tank:
2 Angelfish
2 striped Raphael Catfish
4 Bleeding Hearts
5 Cherry Barbs
I've had them for more two years. 
Today my female Angelfish started swimming in circles and kind of upwards too, at times seems she's going to flip back, my male was attacking her today because they has hatched eggs, but she always hide when he tries to poke her, but today it's been different, she doesn't look ok.
<Indeed. If at all possible, isolate the female to another tank. If you can, remove water from the main aquarium and use this in the hospital tank so she doesn't experience any changes in temperature or water chemistry.>
I have to accept that their water change was due about three days ago but I have a baby so my husband does it, and he did until today. :(
How can I help her, she seemed so healthy yesterday!
<A water change can be a good "shot in the dark" and if she perks up, then
 environment will likely be the issue, so you can then assess and act accordingly. Cichlids are prone to going loopy (disoriented, odd swimming positions) when exposed to things like sudden changes in pH and even temperature, but recover once things in the aquarium improve. They're more sensitive, I think, than most other fish -- perhaps a reflection of their higher intelligence than the average fish. On the other hand, some parasites and pathogens can cause "whirling" symptoms and these may be difficult, even impossible to treat. In any event, isolating the fish and seeing how she looks when she doesn't have other fish harassing her may be the best thing to do. As I say, if there's a stress problem here, isolating and improving the environment should cause her to settle down.>
Thanks a lot,
<Most welcome, Neale.>

Re: Neale: urgent help Angelfish swimming circles      3/29/14
Thanks Neale, newest thing is she's resting in the leaves, I have huge leaves as it is a planted aquarium, so now I see her resting completely upside down, at first I thought she was dead, or dying :-( but I reached her with the net and she started swimming normally, then a few minutes later, the weird pattern again.
<Is she bloated at all? You could try the Epsom salt trick for constipation, in the off chance that's a problem. 1-3 teaspoons per 5 gallons/20 litres will do the trick.>
I can tell Mimo, my male Angelfish, her partner is very upset for all of this.
<I would not anthropomorphise here. "Interest" is not "affection" in the animal world. Personally, I would still isolate her, though of course reintroducing an adult Angel into this aquarium after a week or two would need to be done carefully, perhaps by removing them both, moving a few rocks about, turning out the lights, then putting them in simultaneously, so they both feel like newcomers. At the very least, watch out for aggression if/when she's put back.>
Water is perfectly clean now as always, honestly we've kept great care of them, it was just a couple of days delay, still I added an air pump for extra oxygen, if it indeed was an environment issue, how long till she recovers?
<Normally if it's a brief stress, cichlids recover in a few hours.>
Should I still isolate her? He's not poking her anymore.
<That's a good thing.>
<Welcome, Neale.> 
Re: with picture Neale: urgent help Angelfish swimming circles
Resting in the leaves :( 

<Possibly, but fish also get trapped among leaves when they can't control their movement properly, the water current pushing them around until they got lodged into something such as a plant. Not a big fan of mixing Serpae Tetras with Angels; like many other Hyphessobrycon, Serpae Tetras can be aggressive fin-biters. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Neale: urgent help Angelfish swimming circles

Ok Neale, I will do as you suggest, thinking now it's not only stress as this has been the situation for the last 36 hours now. She's not normal. 
I noticed a white tiny pimple on her tail, but just one, the male doesn't show any. Is it Ich?
<Could be. Hard to say without seeing it. You may want to use your Whitespot treatment of choice. The old salt/heat method is pretty low risk and can be used alongside Epsom salt and antibiotics without problems.>
Thanks so much. 
<Welcome. Neale.>
Re: Neale: urgent help Angelfish swimming circles

If I give her antibiotics and Methylene blue it won't worsen her condition right?
<Likely not, but I'm not a huge fan of randomly medicating animals or people. A vet certainly wouldn't do it, not a doctor. So better to review the situation, look to see if things are improved by isolating the sick fish and providing it with optimal living conditions. Methylene blue is a treatment for -- and pretty much only for -- external fungal infections. If that's not the issue here, don't use it. Likewise antibiotics are used where there's clear sign of a bacterial infection of some sort, whether internal or external. If the abdomen is bloated, or there's sign of sore red areas or dead tissue on the outside of the fish, then antibiotics would be worth using.>
I got an ample spectrum antibiotic called 3 Sulfide, do you agree?
<See above.>
You are the closest I have to a fish vet, thanks so much for your help Neale.
<Most welcome, Neale.>
Re: Neale: urgent help Angelfish swimming circles

Neale, hi,
We had a spare tank but it's a 7 liter!
<Not so much a tank as a bucket, methinks.>
I bought it once for a Bleeding Heart, it is very small so I have to get a new one for my Angelfish, can you tell me which is a right size for a hospital tank, for an Angelfish?
<A 10 gallon tank would be minimal but okay for a singleton Angel.>
I read in one of the forums to stop feeding them for 3 days in case it was an over feeding situation. What do you think about that?
<Worthwhile. But if the fish is eating okay, then it probably isn't that sick, and time in isolation would probably help it recover under its own steam.>
Also, if it's a bladder problem, do you think she will survive?
<Swimming problems come from two main sources. The most common is constipation, of which much is written here. Search the site for "floaty, bloaty goldfish". But bacterial infections that cause dropsy are also quite common, and these are sometimes referred to as "swim bladder disease" even though that's not necessarily the part of the body that's infected!>
In any event she hasn't eaten since Friday when all of this started because when I feed them she doesn't eat she swims around but I don't see her eating, this is all so upsetting, not being able to cure her already.
I am so sad seeing her most of the time upside down on the leaves :-(
Is she in pain/suffering?
<Possibly, but animals have a certain degree of quiet dignity in such situations humans seem to lack.>
But then when I see her flip over and swim alongside my other Angel perfectly straight for a few seconds, it makes me think she has a chance...
<I would agree. Cheers, Neale.>

Neale: Angelfish survived, now white fluffy spot      5/5/14
Hi Neale, how are you?
<Little bit of a cold at the moment; you?>
So my white Angelfish survived, it has been 2 months now since she started to swim upside down, she still rests in the leaves but finally is eating again at the surface and not bottom, when she swims around she swims fine but then she'll go back to the leaves.
<I see.>
That and that she won't breed with my male Angelfish are the two things still not ok.
But now she is showing a bit of a fluffy spot on her fin below her chest and a tiny white spot on her tail, two different things in appearance, how ca I treat her and can I treat the whole tank so I don't have to remove
her? I don't have an hospital tank,
<Sounds like Fungus; medicate in the tank; Methylene blue should work, is fairly harmless to almost all fish save the obvious exceptions (loaches, stingrays, etc.).>
<Most welcome, Neale.>

Angelfish help      3/24/14
Hello crew!
I have a bit of an issue with an angelfish i purchased two days ago. I purchased him from a local pet store by my house that is pretty trustworthy, and they usually have healthy fish for sale. They had 3 angelfish for sale, and they are each a pretty good size ( I would say the size of your palm.) i put him in my 20 gallon quarantine tank,
<Good move>
with a small filter and bubbler. Here is the problem. He is swimming very lethargic, and i had to turn off the filter because he was constantly getting sucked to close to the intake.
<Yikes! Change the water out here: USE the water in another one of your set up, established tanks to replace it... STAT!>
He never actually did, he was just really tired. He doesn't react to movement, unless he is scared, and he rarely moves around the tank. There are no decorations or caves for him to hide, should i add a flower pot so he isn't in open water?
<If you'd like>
He doesn't even respond to blood worms
<...search WWM re these>
or flaked food, he just sits there. The other angelfish that were in the tank did pick on him a bit, his tail has a small split that isn't infected, and he shows no sign of any physical problems like fungus or anything, he just sits and doesn't eat at all. Is there anything i can do to make him more comfortable?
Thank you,
<Change the water NOW and read on WWM re FW Angels. Bob Fenner>

Angelfish gone downhill any ideas?    2/21/14
On Thursday I noticed the angel spending lots of time by the heater not eating and acting listless. he has sense sunk to the bottom of the tank and has heavy breathing and is not moving normally. I did a water change a day after adding Tetracycline. and he seems about the same. He is more bloated and has one slightly cloudy eye.   Due to the roads being bad( it snowed a ton last night)  I have to wait to go out and get more meds for him. I did turn up the heater and added aquarium salt.
<Alex, the usual advice here is this: Test the water quality (nitrite is a good start) and the water chemistry (pH will do). Compare to what they should be. Do a water change of 25-50%. Check the heater (no need to increase/decrease, just make sure it's where it should be). Don't feed the fish just yet. Wait to see if the fish perks up after the water change; if it does, it's a good clue there's something amiss with the environment. Assess, and act accordingly. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Angelfish gone downhill any ideas?    2/21/14

looked up swim bladder issues/ angel distress, I think that's what he has,
<Except that fish that have "swim bladder problems" are almost certainly stressed or sick in some other way, and what you're seeing is a symptom, not a disease ("Swim Bladder Disease" as imagined by many fish keepers basically doesn't exist). So you need to review all possible aspects. When fish get sick, they find it difficult to swim. It's rather like how a high temperature can mean all sorts of things in humans, from the flu to malaria.>
as he still lies on the bottom and struggles to swim properly The L204 has been leaving him alone and the rams are too.. I took out the carbon and plan on getting meds for him once the snowy roads are cleared. tomorrow- any meds I can get for swim bladder trouble.
<A sensible approach would be to treat as per an internal bacterial infection, but if there's some other cause of stress, such as bullying,
obviously that won't help. Do review your aquarium carefully: there's something going on that's made your Angel stressed or sick, and there's no information at all that you've supplied me that would be used to identify the reason(s). Cheers, Neale.>

Angelfish with white spots that don't appear to be Ick      2/6/14
I am having a problem with two of my angelfish in a 100 gal tank that I have.  I have a total of six angelfish, only two are experiencing the problem.  Originally I thought they were starting to have Ick, but the spots stayed around the eyes only, were only a handful of spots, and which evolved to look more like pimples or white worms working their way out of the fish's heads.  I had raised the temp to 84 degrees, but they kept having recurring events.  All water parameters are fine, all other fish are unaffected. 
Tank is two years old and no new introduction of fish or plants in over a year and a half.  Could it be hole-in-the-head?
<Doubtful, but may be some sort of external protozoan. I would try a one shot lacing of their foods w/ Metronidazole; and as this may be a Fluke/Trematode, with Praziquantel as well>
 It does not look like the pictures of other fish I have seen, no craters on their heads.  I am including a picture of one of the angelfish.  Mouth is due to this male fighting with a mated pair I have in the tank and is unrelated to the spots issue.  I just don't know what to treat them with when I am not sure what they have.  I have never had any fish with this type of issue and I have had tanks for sometime.  I would appreciate any opinion you have on what you think they have.  None of my other fish are coming down with this either.
Cindy Cotton
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Re: Angelfish with white spots that don't appear to be Ick      2/6/14
Hello Bob.  Thanks for the response.  I will get Metronidazole, I have PraziPro and have done one dose of it in the food - I will try that again as well.  
<Real good. Please do report back your further observations. BobF>
Cindy Cotton

Re: Angelfish with white spots that don't appear to be Ick       2/7/14
Hello again.  One other observation I did forget to mention is that when one of the white pimples/worms (whatever) seems to come out or detach, another one forms in the exact location of the previous one after a day or two.
<Yes; have encountered "this sort of thing before"... Perhaps as we've speculated it is a type of Neuromast Destruction/HLLE... borne of Octomita/Hexamita exposure, some aspect of water quality? See WWM re. B>
Cindy Cotton
Re: Angelfish with white spots that don't appear to be Ick       2/7/14

Thanks again. I will let you know how things turn out.
<Real good. B>

Become a Sponsor Features:
Daily FAQs FW Daily FAQs SW Pix of the Day FW Pix of the Day New On WWM
Helpful Links Hobbyist Forum Calendars Admin Index Cover Images
Featured Sponsors: