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FAQs on Freshwater Stingray Parasitic Disease

FAQs on FW Stingray Disease: FW Stingray Disease 1, FW Stingray Disease 2, FW Stingray Disease 3, FW Stingray Disease 4,  
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Diagnosis, Environment, Nutrition, Trauma, Infectious (Virus, Bacterial, Fungal),Social, Treatments

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Related FAQs: Freshwater Stingrays, FW Stingray Identification, FW Stingray Behavior, FW Stingray Compatibility, FW Stingray Selection, FW Stingray Systems, FW Stingray Feeding, FW Stingray Reproduction,


My Freshwater Stingray has internal lice     7/26/12
I have had a Reticulated Teacup Stingray for about 2 months now.
He's in a 75 gallon tank which I know I have read online that it isn't big enough for him, but he isn't that big and when I got him they said he wasn't going to get much bigger because he wasn't a baby.
<They lied. There's no such thing as a "teacup" stingray any more than there's such a thing as a "kitten". They're both baby versions of bigger animals. You will ultimately need 5, 6, 7 times the volume of water you have now, so you may as well start planning on the upgrade. Stingrays are insanely difficult and expensive fish to maintain, which is why so few people keep them successfully.>
When using a API Freshwater Test Kit his pH is 7.6 (he started at a 8.4 when we got him from the store I didn't want to lower it to fast since he was used to high pH )
Nitrate is 5.0ppm
Ammonia is 0.25ppm
<Dangerous for Stingrays.>
Nitrite is 0ppm
80 Degrees
<A bit too warm. Aim for 25 C/77 F.>
He is alone in the tank with no other fish,  plants, rocks, or ornaments. There is  a Aqua Tech Power Head to give him more air circulation and a Emperor Bio-Wheel 400 Power Filter.
<A pretty poor filtration system for this sort of fish. You really do need serious, heavy duty filtration. We're talking big canister filters, like the Fluval FX5.>
Eats frozen bloodworms and frozen krill. We have tried frozen beef heart, frozen brine shrimp, and live guppies but he didn't like any of them.
<Why were you feeding him guppies? You do realise once a Stingray gets infected with parasites, they're very difficult to medicate? So absolutely everything you put in the tank needs to be parasite-free.>
Today when I went to feed my stingray bloodworms he came up on the side of the tank and I noticed that he had the long line around his under  body, which I had read previously before getting him, was fish lice.
<Really? Never heard that. What are you reading? Forget about relying on web sites, though by all means read them. Since Stingrays cost thousands of dollars to keep, I'm assuming $10-20 on one of Richard Ross' excellent Stingray books wouldn't phase you at all. Buy one, read it, rely on it.>
I called a couple places around my area to see if anyone could help me understand how to get it out and treat it. So when I started doing what they told me  I put him in a bowl with shallow water and flipped him over so I could get to the fish lice. When I did get him on his back  he got really scared and was flapping around, but after a couple seconds  he calmed down. One of the stores told us that when stingrays and sharks are put on their back there is a chemical that releases into their body that makes them be still like a defense mechanism or something.
When I tried to take tweezers and pull the lice worm out I couldn't get to it . I tried in a couple different spots and noticed that it wasn't on the outside of his skin and not like protruding out. His skin was smooth, so I called the place again and they said it was a internal parasite not a external. I asked him what we could do and he told me to try something that has Dimilin in it but not to use a lot only to use a half a drop on his krill since he is  still eating and then wait 3 days before I try another time. I wanted to see if you could please  help me to figure out what kind of medicine I can use to help kill the parasite. I know there are a lot of products out there that are good for killing parasites, but you can't use some of  them on stingrays because they are so sensitive. Can you please help me to save him from dying?
<I do need a photo of this "line" that you suppose has something to do with parasites. Plus, I'm fairly sure the problem here is environmental as much as anything else. Half-starved and/or stressed Stingrays will show all sorts of odd lines underneath that are in fact their skeletal elements or their blood vessels showing through the skin. Just because you're feeding a lot of one or two foods doesn't mean your Ray is getting all the vitamins and minerals it needs, so you can easily starve a fish even if it gets lots of calories.>
I don't know if this can be any cause to him getting lice but we were just having problems with his nitrite being very high it was at a 5.0 for at least 2 weeks. I started trying to do a 30% water change every other day to bring down the nitrite, but it wasn't working . Then I read online that one of the problems could have been that I was doing to frequent of a water change.
<Again, rubbish. So long as you do regular water changes (ideally, daily) and keep the pH and hardness of the new water the same as the old water, you are doing good. Obviously you don't use tap water with Stingrays, but water from a reverse-osmosis filter, suitably buffered with Discus Salts. This means that your water changes will likely be limited by how much water your RO filter produces per day.>
My tank had not fully cycled yet because he was the first fish we had ever put in there and was a new bio-wheel filter.
<What?! You are keeping a Stingray in a new aquarium…?>
Also, when I was siphoning the sand I was bringing up more nitrite.  So I stopped doing a water change for about four days and it had just went back to 0 . I don't know if having the nitrite change so fast could be causing this.
<Please go back and read about cycling and maintaining aquaria.>
Also, about a month ago he had scraped his back on something in the tank. We're not sure what it was originally he had scraped it on, but then I noticed the part that takes up the water had been close to the side of the tank and my stingray goes up and down the side of the tank right by it all the time. (Which at first I was worried that him going up and down like that a lot  was a bad thing, but I read online that someone else's stingray does that too and they have had it for a lot longer and is perfectly healthy.) So I put a tube around it to make sure he can't get scratched by it. His wound looks like it has healed up, but you can still see the color change of where it was at. I don't know if this could have made him more prone to getting parasites or diseases. I'm just trying to give you as much  information about him as I can to help you help me. I don't mean to sound rambling.
<You aren't rambling, but you are telling me A LOT of things I don't want to hear! Seriously Colleen, as much as I applaud your obvious enthusiasm and affection for your pet, this is one of those times where you may have bitten off more than you can chew. Short term, do daily water changes, replacing 10-20% each time. Stop feeding while ammonia is not zero, and once ammonia is zero, keep feeding at a low level, and offer a variety of things. If he doesn't eat strips of white fish or squid (both good foods) remove the food and let him starve that day. Earthworms are another excellent, usually irresistible treat. But don't feel compelled to feed him for a few days, and concentrate on water quality more than feeding. Also buy the Richard Ross book, read it cover to cover, and long term, implement all the recommendations he makes. You absolutely cannot keep Stingrays on a budget, so forget about trying. They're wildly expensive pets, and no more practical for folks with limited time, space and money than, say, horses.>
Thank you for all your help!
<Hope this helps and good luck, Neale.>

Re: My Freshwater Stingray has internal lice – 07/26/12
Hello again,
Thank you so much for your help so far!
<Most welcome.>
I ordered that book yesterday because I have been trying to find it around my area instead of having to order it online, but I just decided to order it online and stop waiting around.
<Good idea.>
Here are two of the websites that I found that talk about stingrays having fish lice.
<Argulus spp. fish lice are very distinctive.>
This website shows a picture of a stingray with fish lice and it looks almost exactly like what my stingray has.
<You mean you can see the fish lice? You are using a microscope?>
I find a lot of websites that show that stingrays can get it, but they all say you can pull it out with tweezers and I cannot.
<Quite so. Argulus can be removed manually, but doing so leaves wounds that may become infected. There are medications, but many of them are insecticides, and these are toxic to Stingrays. If you think you have a Stingray with an Argulus infection, this is one of those situations where contacting a vet trained in fish health will make a huge difference.>
I attached a picture of my stingray it is the best one I have got so far he kept moving around a lot when I tried to take a picture of him. You can see the line that is a little faint in the picture, but it is the same line that the stingray has in the picture on the website.
<I can't see any evidence of Argulus in that photo. A bigger photo would help though.>
The place we got the stingray from said that they fed their stingray guppies and that he loved them so we thought we would give it a try. We put the guppies in his tank about a week after we got him and we left them in there for a day or two but when we noticed he wasn't even trying to go after them we took them out.
Would the parasite been in there for that long and just attached to him?
<Unlikely, but not impossible.>
I didn't notice this line on him until yesterday and I see his underbody all the time because when I feed him he comes on the front side of the tank and swims all around. We were worried about feeding him live food because of the risk of a parasite, but they had said they feed there's that so I thought he would be fine. The bloodworm package says that it has vitamin supplements in it that is why I thought that it was ok for right now.
<If supplemented with vitamins, yes, should be a good food, though there is some belief bloodworms aren't a safe food because the worms live in polluted water. The best foods are those that come from clean habitats where fish don't live -- earthworms and brine shrimps for example. Marine foods sold for human consumption should be safe too, cockles, squid, prawns and mussels (though do review Thiaminase, and understand that prawns and mussels should be used sparingly because of it).>
Once I get his ammonia down I will go out and get him some earthworms and try that. Is there any type of white fish you can recommend feeding to him?
Is it something I can buy from the grocery store or do I need to ask my seller to try and get it?
<Plain tilapia fillet sold in many stores is perfectly safe and readily consumed. It's cheap as well. Buy fresh, slice into strips, then freeze, ready to defrost as needed.>
I also found that if it is fish lice that a few people have used Melafix and Anchor's Away with Dimilin to get rid of it on stingrays. It isn't anything that my local pet store has so I would have to order it online.
<I would not randomly medicate. My feeling here is the Stingray is basically fine, but perhaps stressed by recent water quality issues. Fix those, vary its diet, and it should perk up. Don't add stuff/medicate until you've read Richard Ross' book.>
Once again thank you for all your help!
<Most welcome, Neale.> 
Re: My Freshwater Stingray has internal lice – 07/26/12

Here are two more pictures of him that you can see the line better. He also has a lot of bumps throughout his body, but in the insides of the lines. I hope these pictures help to be able to see if it is fish lice or not.
<Still not seeing anything obviously parasitic. Can you re-send with a red squiggle or something around the bit you think is a parasite? The off-white lines on the underside are normal. A good clue is if they're more or less symmetrical, i.e., on both sides of the body. If you see the same line on the left and the right side of the fish, they're probably meant to be there.>
Now with the Fluval FX5 should I get rid of my other filter completely or should I still use it with it.
<At the very least, have them running alongside each other for 6-8 weeks so the bacteria in the new filter have time to multiply up to the required amounts. But ideally, keep both. You can never have too much filtration. Do review the needs of Potamotrygon carefully.>
Or if I keep my filter I have in there now can I get a smaller Fluval and use them together?
<If you're thinking about economising on filtration, you're thinking the wrong way. With Stingrays, the basic idea is to use the biggest filter (or the most filters) you can. Adults are extremely messy animals, yet incredibly sensitive to ammonia.>
Thank you again!
<Welcome, Neale.>


Motoro Stingray Internal Parasites 1/5/10
Hello WWM Crew,
First off I would really like to thank you for the database of information you have on this website - it has been invaluable.
I have had my 4-5" Motoro pair for roughly 3 months now. After a couple of weeks of ownership, I have found that the smaller male had white stringy feces. The larger female had the signature earthworm looking (a.k.a. healthy) fecal matter. I did not give much thought to it but kept an eye on the situation. However, in the past month the situation has gotten worse. I have started treatment with Prazi for the past two week and the problem still persists.
This is the regimen for Prazi that I am currently using as per thegab.org's instructions:
Remove carbon.
Add 2.5 milligrams per liter of water.
If you are using the powdered version, it is difficult to dissolve.
Predissolve in tank water by shaking it up in a small container.
Day 1 -- remove carbon, perform water change with vacuuming, and add Prazi to tank
Day 2 -- add Prazi
Day 3 -- do nothing
Day 4 -- do nothing
Day 5 -- do nothing
Day 6 -- add Prazi
Day 7 -- add Prazi
Day 8 -- normal partial water change with vacuuming
Day 14 - normal partial water change, then add Prazi
Day 21 - normal partial water change, then add Prazi
Day 28 - normal partial water change, then add Prazi
Day 35 - normal partial water change, add carbon, treatment is complete
The rays have a black Arowana as a tank mate and it appears as if he has HITH and also Finrot that I cannot rid of.
<Tackle this nutritionally, and...>
I have used Binox Nitrofurazone on the black Arowana with no resolve. I also have two NTT Datnoides and have observed extremely white stringy feces from it as well. Water parameters are pristine with zeros across the board and weekly 50% water changes.
I am beginning to think that these issues are all related to Hexamita.
The only problem is that all the fish in my 240G tank are eating live Blackworms with the exception of the black Aro, who currently eats the Hikari Carnivore sticks. I'm not sure how I would administer the Metronidazole to them.
<Via the food... shaken in a bag... altogether>
I can soak the Blackworms but I'm sure a lot of the medication will be lost in the water. I also figured that dosing the entire tank will not be as effective in entering their digestive tract.
<Enough will get into them to effect a cure>
How do you think I should approach this matter? I am running out of options.
I have heard others recommend Panacur, but have also heard a lot of horror stories associated with them.
Any help would be greatly appreciated as my options are exhausted; as am I.
Thanks again!
A long time patron eagerly awaiting your response,
Jeff L
<Use the food/s. Bob Fenner>
Re: Motoro Stingray Internal Parasites 1/8/10

Good Evening WWM Crew,
<AM here now Jeff... power outage. Sorry for the delay>
Thanks so much for the prompt response. I have some follow up questions in regards to the Metronidazole dosing.
1) What would you recommend the ratio of Blackworms to Metronidazole?
<Mmm, not really important... If the drug is in capsule form, just tip out "a little" (maybe a quarter capsule) per "feeding portion", mix together w/ the worms 5-10 minutes ahead of feeding. If the drug is in a tablet, use a pill splitter or single edge razor blade to chop into quarters and grind that bit down per feeding...>
2) What is the frequency that I should feed them the medicated worms? I am currently feeding them twice a day - morning and night.
<I would feed at both times for... Please read here:
3) Also, since I am feed them the medication and not dosing the entire tank,
would I still need to perform a water change after a 24 hour period?
<I would, yes>
Medicating through ingestion for fish is completely new to me. You help and information is always greatly valued.
Thanks in advance for your time and help!
Jeff L
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re: Motoro Stingray Internal Parasites, & Flagyl use f' 1/11/10

Good day WWM Crew,
I read over the Metronidazole page that you provided me and I still have a few questions that need some attention.
<Go ahead>
Quoting the web page:
*Soaking frozen or live foods in 1% solutions for a few hours in a refrigerator is a very good idea. Actual dosages are best at about 0.25% Metronidazole fed at a daily rate of 1% of body weight. Feed just once usually, no more than thrice.*
Does that mean that I would complete the Metronidazole treatment after feeding my fish the medicated food three times?
<Yes; this is the S.O.P., dosing>
Or does it mean that it
would complete one of the three courses of treatment. in a three day treatment period?
This is what I mean is this:
Day 1: Feed Metro laced food 2-3 times a day
Day 2: Water change.
Day 3: Feed Metro laced food 2-3 times a day
Day 4: Water change.
Day 5: Feed Metro laced food 2-3 times a day
Day 6: Water change.
Sorry if I am scrupulous with the details, but I love my rays. Thanks in advance for all the help!
Jeff L
<Mmm, to paraphrase (Whaley & Francis-Floyd, 1991), there's evidence that one time oral administration of Metronidazole may be just as effective as three water-borne treatments... No more than the three should be done. Bob Fenner>

A worm question (Horsehair worms; stingrays) 10/17/08 Hello, <Hi,> was just wanted to know I notice some of my ghost shrimp have worms in there intestines are to believe they are Gordian Worm, a.k.a. Horsehair Worms...one died bc the worm killed it but I never notice them b4 on my shrimp I feed these shrimp to my Motoro stingray which I have had for about a week I know they are prone to roundworms and tapeworms but I was wondering if I did feed some shrimp that had these in them can they kill my ray I called the pet store where I got my ray and they never really heard of these worms really and are not sure if they will harm the ray they feed there ghost shrimp to there rays and had no prob but they never looked at there shrimp to see if they had worms so they could be feeding ones that do so I don't know what I should do I don't want my ray to die and I don't know if I should get new shrimp the other ones seem to not have these worms in them..should I continue to feed them to my ray or go and get new ones?????? <Sheesh... not even a period or comma. Do please review our very modest "fee" before writing: we expect e-mails to be spell checked and written with proper grammar. Not much to ask, and the point is that we depend on properly formatted messages so that we can share them with other site visitors. The better Google can index our pages, the more people will view our pages, and the more revenue our advertising generates to pay for bandwidth. It's a simple deal really.> HELP!!! PLEASE KINDA SCARED FOR MY RAY I LOVE HIM!!! <Horsehair worms are not likely to cause your Ray any harm. Most parasites are species-specific, and while they may be harmful to the shrimp, they are unlikely to adapt to the particular anatomy of your Stingray. If you're really that bothered, don't use the shrimps. Earthworms are a very safe food if collected from an area that is "organic", i.e., not sprayed with chemicals. Most rays love earthworms. There's no reason to use live food with most Stingrays anyway, and a varied diet of mussels, prawns and squid is easily provided using foods sold for humans.> thanks Maria <Cheers, Neale.>

Freshwater stingray problem 03/22/07 Hi, I raise fresh water stingrays currently in a 400 gal. tank. I have had about five litters of Marbled Motoros in the last two years. <Neat> My problem is with my Leopoldi Rays. Last year I had a large male (14") started to do flips in the tank and then end up upside down. <Mmm, wild-collected...> It would stay like this until I would flip him back over. He did this on and off for about three weeks, then stopped eating and passed away. Now I have another Leo doing the same thing. I need to save this Leo, it is my only male left and you can't get any black rays in the USA any more. My rays are fed every day with a mix of shrimp, silversides, scallop and sometimes earthworms. I do huge water changes once a week. <Good> PH is about 7.5-7.8. <Would be better if the water were more acidic... and likely softer... See fishbase.org re this species water quality in the wild: http://fishbase.sinica.edu.tw/Summary/SpeciesSummary.php?id=53766 > If you have any comments on what to try would be great, There is not too much information about ray problems in the States. Thanks for your time, Jim <I do suspect some sort of internal parasite problem here... And do encourage you to isolate, possibly (if this were me, perceiving what you have in mind... breeding these species long-term... I would) treat them prophylactically, through quarantine on arrival... for worms and Protozoans... Anthelminthic/s (my choice here: Praziquantel) and anti-protozoal (Metronidazole)... It will cost somewhat, but I would likely treat all in the 400 gallon at this point... Much more on Potamotrygonids, these compounds' use posted on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Sick Stingray, post-Argulus 2/13/07 Hi, Wet Web Crew-- <Erin> The general info and FAQ pages on your site have been really helpful to me! Now I have a specific question about a sick stingray. I'd really appreciate any info that would help me help her! <Will help you in whatever way I can> I've been keeping four freshwater stingrays (P. schroederi, I think) for about a month now--each in a separate 30 gal breeder tank (I'm a grad student doing research on the way they swim). <Ahh!> They have a soft non-silica sand substrate, <Mmmm...> and are kept at 81 degrees F. I'm waiting for my pH decreaser to arrive, since the water's currently too basic at about 7.4. <Mmmm... needs to have been adjusted ahead of their arrival...> Water quality otherwise (nitrates, ammonia, hardness, nitrites, etc) good. The rays came in with a little fungus near their spines, <Very common... shipping damage... from rubbing against each other in transit> but that has cleared up and all were looking great, feeding very well on live blackworms (a pipette-full, about 12 worms, twice a day). Then last week I noticed a couple Argulus fish lice on one ray-- <Mmm... I'd be getting out the Yamaguti references...> looked & looked but couldn't see any on the others. This same ray has also failed to put on weight, and recently is *losing* weight. <These fish were wild-collected but not prophylactically treated?> I removed the Argulus with forceps yesterday, but am concerned as they have left the front of her disc hemmorhagic (I've read this can result from Argulus) and with some (secondary?) fungus. Worst of all, she's holding that part of her disc curled up from the substrate (bad news!!) though she can still bring it down to feed. Yes, she's still eating hungrily! <Good sign> Obviously I'm worried about internal parasites, or a systemic infection causing this emaciation. I'd also like to so something to help the front of her disc heal, but I'm not sure what treatments to use. From what I've read, a salt dip (~4%) could help with any remaining Argulus... <Mmm, not advised... Potamotrygonids don't "like" salts either> I also have access to tetracycline and erythromycin, as well as Methylene blue (which I used to treat the initial tail fungus with some success). <Good safe cures for what they can do> Sorry for the long message, just trying to be thorough! ~Erin <Mmm, do take the long read on WWM re Flagyl/Metronidazole and Formalin (dips/baths)... Rays, Chondrichthyous fishes period do not tolerate copper and other metal salts, nor organophosphates (actually acetylcholinesterase inhibitors period)... Avoid these last two classes of medicants... and consider (seriously) the first two... We'll be chatting, Bob Fenner>
Re: Sick Stingray, post-Argulus 2/13/07
Hi Bob, <Erin> Thanks so much for your reply. Her disc is a bit worse today (though not as bad as I'd feared) and she's definitely listless and not really eating. *worries* <Yes> I'm reading up on formalin baths right now, but haven't been able to find good info on dosage for stingrays. <Mmm... in round numbers, one "capful" of 37% per a gallon of system water... for a bath... with you in attendance, brisk aeration...> I'll definitely keep looking, but obviously I'd like to treat her as quickly as possible. I've never done a formalin bath before, so if you can recommend a concentration I'd be most grateful. Thanks! ~Erin <And I would avail myself of a Furan compound (likely Nitrofurazone... 250 mg. per ten gallons of system water)... after. Bob Fenner>
Re: Sick Stingray, post-Argulus 2/13/07
One source recommends 1mL formalin/gallon for marine ray species... Is that appropriate for freshwater? ~Erin <Yes my friend. BobF>

FW Stingrays & Ich If you can help that would be great. We have a 180 Gallon Tank that we are getting ready to put in 3 freshwater stingrays. <Three may be too many for this tank. It's recommended that you have at least a 100 gallon tank for a single ray so you will probably want no more than 2 in the tank you have. To keep the tank from looking bare you can add some larger mid to upper water column fish that like the same water parameters.> We are trying to cycle the tank now but we have a small problem. The fish that we have in there one of them got Ick and died the others that are in there have maybe one spot on the fin, but they are ok. The water that we have used to set this tank up was stingray water as well as drinking water delivery. We are treating the tank with the Ick medicine and we have been doing this for the last 4 days. We were told that a stingray is immune to this disease, <Unfortunately, you were misinformed. These fish can and do get Ich and once they have it it's very hard to treat successfully. Please read http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwstingrays.htm and the related FAQ's for more info.> but what we want to know is if we put the ray in there now with the med would anything happen to him and with the fish having a small dot on him would that be a problem? <Yes, it will be a problem.> We don't want for him to die but since he has a film on him and we are also treating the tank with salt as well. Please help me on your opinion everyone tells us a million different things so what we are looking for is an outsiders thought. <See the above link, it should answer your questions.> Thank you, Suzanne Dubman <You're welcome! Ronni>
Re: FW Stingrays & Ich
Good morning, <Greetings> I'm very sorry for the bother, but I do have other questions for you. We went to the pet store and found out that one of the blk and white cat fishes in the tank was also scratching on the walls as well as very few dots on the Garibaldi's fin... They said to us that all you have to do is scrap it off. <That's not true. The fish need to be treated for Ich, scraping it off isn't going to do the job. With advice like this, I would be finding another store to buy from.> He also did just buy an armored catfish, is there anything that he needs to understand about this fish that is different. <There are a lot of different 'armored' catfishes so I don't know exactly what you have. But you can find a wealth of information on all of them by simply searching the web with your favorite search engine or by using the Google search box at http://www.wetwebmedia.com > Plus, would you happen to know anything on the Asian Longtail stingray this is the one that he is buying as well as the Florida one with the pointed nose the eyes are very realistic he is just way to kewl. <See above, you should be able to find oodles of info on these by searching for them.> I have to say with all of the research that I have been doing I will be a pro in stingrays soon... <Ronni>
Re: FW Stingrays & Ich
Thank you Ronni... He is also treating them as well he did a full dose of CopperSafe on Friday and just got the other fish on Sunday so it is ok cause he was in the same tank as the others at the store with the ick.. So now he is being treated as well... Also, what other place in IL has stingrays for sale? I do feel as if we should go to a different place as well but we don't know of any... Can you help me on this one as well? <Sorry, I'm in MT so don't know of any reputable stores in IL. Ronni>
Re: FW Stingrays & Ich
Wow! Thank you for all of your help. So tell me one thing why is Scott's pets shop saying that they are immune to these diseases and why did he say they live in these through their life? <Unfortunately, many stores are only interested in making their profit and will tell a prospective buyer pretty much anything. Many other stores also have untrained staff that will answer a question without actually knowing the proper answer. However, it is true that they live with the disease to a certain degree throughout their life, all fish carry this disease and it's present in every system but only at certain times does a true outbreak of it occur. And unfortunately, there's no way of knowing what is going to bring it on. The best thing to do is fully research (via books, the web, etc.) any prospective purchases before committing to them.> We are using Ick cure for the treatment right now is that ok? <Should be fine as long as the stingrays aren't in there yet.> How long should we treat it? The bottle does say that we go a teaspoon per gal but I was told only do half? <If you have scaleless or small scaled fishes then a half dose is correct. Always treat as long as the bottle says to.> We have the Eheim filter took the carbon out so when we are done treating the tank in which should we treat until gone or only what the bottle says which is 3 days and how should we take the medicine out. <If the fish still have ich after the 3 days then you will need to do a partial water change (25%) and treat for another 3 days. Once the fish no longer have the disease, do another partial water change and replace your carbon.> Should we just put in the carbon filter and let that do the trick and if so how long until we can actually wait to put in the fish? <Even with a water change and replacing the carbon you should wait at least 3 weeks before adding any new livestock to the tank. This is to make sure the ich doesn't come back. And all new additions should be quarantined in a separate tank for 2-4 weeks to prevent them introducing a disease to the main tank.> Should we also consider this part of the cycle? <The three week period between the cure of the disease and the time it's safe to add fish can be considered part of the cycle time. Just make sure your ammonia and nitrites are at 0ppm before adding any new livestock.> Please help me out. .. That web site is great. I told him and he was thankful but mad at the entire situation due to he is getting impatient. <Don't let his impatience rush you into your purchase. Your ultimate goal here is to have a healthy and happy tank that you can enjoy. This won't happen if your LFS rushes you into things. If he keeps pushing let him know very clearly that you will buy and add the stingrays when you are certain that they will be safe and if he continues to push let him know that you can always take your business elsewhere. A store should be concerned with the welfare of their stock above all else.> Any help for the patience.... <Good luck and if I can help more please let me know. Ronni>
Re: FW Stingrays & Ich
Hello there, <Hello> One more question. Will that medicine really hurt the ray and if he does put the ray in now after the carbon filter takes place over night what do you think the chances will be to live. Again it is a brand new tank and he did take the bad fish out when he was sick as the other ones seem fine except for one spot on two of them. That is actually it. So tell me please. He is very frustrated with this whole situation cause he feels as of he got shafted from the place. They should have not given him any other fish that where from a different tank then the stingrays to cycle the tank. Really he spent a lot of money on this. <I certainly wouldn't try putting the ray in this quickly. You are running the risk of the ray being killed by the medication and/or the ray getting ich. Even if the remaining fish only show one spot they are still infected. A healthy fish will not have any ich spots. Patience is the key here. Ronni>
Re: FW Stingrays & Ich
Believe me I do agree with you on that patient work, but he just does not seem to have any at this point. This is something that he really wants and is working towards here but the problems just keep on coming. What else can he put into the tank and maybe help the tank to go faster? <Until the disease is cleared up and has been gone for several weeks it is not advisable to add anything at all. And anything that is added after that should be fully quarantined for several weeks to prevent this happening again. Ronni>

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