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FAQs on the Flowerhorn Cichlid Disease 3

Related Articles: Flowerhorns by Ong, Blood Parrots & Flowerhorn Cichlids: maintenance and healthcare of two popular hybrid cichlids by Neale Monks, Cichlid Fishes,

Related FAQs: Flowerhorn Disease 1, Flowerhorn Disease 2, Flowerhorn Disease 4, Flowerhorn Disease 5, FAQs on Flowerhorn Cichlid Disease by Category: Environmental, Nutritional (e.g. HLLE), Social, Infectious (Virus, Bacterial, Fungal), Parasitic (Ich, Velvet...), Genetic, Treatments, & Flowerhorns, Flowerhorn Identification, Flowerhorn Behavior, Flowerhorn Compatibility, Flowerhorn Selection, Flowerhorn Systems, Flowerhorn Feeding, Flowerhorn Reproduction, Cichlids, Dwarf South American Cichlids, African Cichlids, Angelfishes, Discus, Chromides, Neotropical Cichlids,

Emergency help pls 7/2/11
Help my flower horn just a few days ago got scared sum how is sitting in the corner with his body color black n he gets scared to go up and eat the food. Before he got scared he was very energetic, aggressive and happy. He is a Singapore species. Pls reply as soon as possible
<Flowerhorn cichlids, like other cichlids, tend to be nervous if their aquarium is too small. So first of all, make sure the tank is big enough, i.e., at least 75 gallons/300 litres. Secondly, they dislike bright light.
Plastic plants are useful for providing shade. Also, brightly coloured substrates that bounce light upwards will stress them too. Finally, like all fish, they become nervous if water quality and water chemistry are
inadequate. Flowerhorn cichlids need good water quality (0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and less than 20 mg/l nitrate) and water chemistry that is hard and alkaline (15+ degrees dH, pH 7-8). Do read:
Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Emergency help pls, FH... -- 07/02/11

my tank is 5ft long and its not too bright too but I don't know how to read the ammonia,
<Ammonia test kit.>
<Nitrate test kit, though I would argue you need a nitrite (NO2-) test kit before either nitrate (NO3-) or ammonia (NH3).>
and ph levels
<pH test kit.>
can u tell me how to read? there is nothing in the tank. 4 months ago it killed its brothers.
<Not unusual.>
some days ago my dad put some salt to the tank
<Salt is of minimal/no value as a general tonic; read:
what can it do to my fish?
<Read about what these fish actually need, and act accordingly. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Emergency help pls -- 07/03/11
I tried it the water chemistry is all good as u said 2 check it. The place is nt too bright or too dark n no substrate there reflects light. but still it is scared. my dad said its type of a season for it cuz the same is
happening to his fh.tnx in adv.
<Please try and write in standard English, not "text messaging". What you're saying here isn't clear. Now, don't tell me you think the water chemistry is "good" -- tell me what the specific numbers are! What is, at
minimum, the pH and the nitrite level? If there is no substrate, that is bad, because glass will reflect light upwards. Flowerhorns don't act weird in summer, so season has nothing to do with this. Please do try and
understand that in much of the world Flowerhorns are kept very badly, and very few live for anything like their full lifespan. They need very specific care. If you don't provide that care, your Flowerhorn won't do
well. Cheers, Neale.>

Sick Flowerhorn 6/8/11
Good evening. I hope that you can help me or at least shed some light on my problem as none of the aquatic stores in my area seems to be able to. I had 2 short bodied Flowerhorns, I now have one. A month or so ago my biggest Flowerhorn started to sit on his head at the bottom of the tank. He would come up to eat and then go back to sitting on his head. Eventually he stopped eating and some of the other fish (black belt, green terror, red terror, blue eyed cichlid, parrot fish, jack Dempsey), started picking at him and we had to take him out of the tank. He eventually died. Now, my other Flowerhorn is doing the exact same thing. The pH, nitrites, nitrates, etc are spot on. Water is crystal clear and none of the other fish are having any problems. I have treated the tank thinking he has a swim bladder issue but that did nothing. I read on your website that it could possibly be "poor genes" but could this be the case with both of these fish? I sure hope you can help. Thank you so much for your time. Leslie
< Your "short " Flowerhorn may also have a modified intestinal track. Since everything else looks good I would start looking at the diet. Normal cichlids seem to be doing fine, but the Flowerhorns are having internal issues. This could be caused by stress or by diet. I would isolate the sick fish in a hospital tank and treat with a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace. When he acts normal then try to feed a new type of food.-Chuck>
Re: Sick Flowerhorn 6/8/11
Source for Flowerhorn Info

Thank you so much for your help but unfortunately me email to you was a little too late and my fish died. I will however keep this information if I decide to try raising Flowerhorns again. They were such beautiful fish and I hate that I lost them both to something that appears to have been preventable. Where can I get good, reliable information on this specific fish and how to care for them? Not that you aren't reliable but I don't think you want me emailing you every other day with questions. Again thanks so much for everything. Leslie
< A few years ago Flowerhorns were very popular and I believe there was a book on Flowerhorns. Never read it but it could be worth a try.-Chuck>

Flower horn sick after feeding pork....Please help! 5/1/11
I am Suresh from India. I have a 1year old Flower horn. She is normally very active & a voracious eater. But 3 days back I fed her pork after which she does not eat at all & is not active. She sits at the bottom of the tank most of the time. She also has developed a small bulge in the abdomen. I came to know after referring the net that pork is not suitable for flower horns'¦but what do I do now to make her well. Please help as I don't want to lose her.
<Greetings, Suresh. Hope you've learned your lesson here! Do not, Do Not, DO NOT give bird or mammal meat to aquarium fish -- EVER! In short, mammal and bird meats congeal inside cold-blooded animals, and in doing so, cause them varying degrees of harm. Of course some cold-blooded animals are adapted to dealing with such prey, like snakes, but not your cichlid. Your cichlid should be fed a mix of pellet foods, cooked peas, spinach, and small invertebrates such as earthworms. For now, you just have to wait and see what happens. Don't feed her until her belly comes back to normal. When she does start eating, give her just cooked peas (squashing the peas as well sometimes helps) -- peas are excellent laxatives for fish. You can also use Epsom salt (magnesium sulphate; not cooking salt, i.e., sodium chloride!) at 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons will help a good deal by loosening the muscles of the gut, reducing swelling. But that's about all you can do. Cheers, Neale.>

gill infection. Killing a FH, env. 3/18/11
Hi WWM crew
I have a Flowerhorn approx 9 inches in length. He is housed in a 20 gallon tank.
<This is too small a volume for this fish>
My fish is suffering from gill infection.
<Mmm, no... this fish is suffering from the above... an environmental situation. Only fix-able by being placed in a much larger world... 50-60 gallons minimum>
He has red swollen gills. This problem occurred when I changed the water completely.
<... also a poor idea>
I have added Oxytetracycline 250 mg 2 tabs to the tank. I would like to know whether this is the right treatment or could you help me with the same.
Thanks in advance.
<Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/flowerhornsysfaq.htm
and all the linked files above re this cross. Bob Fenner>

very urgent question on Flowerhorn 1/9/11
I have a question regarding my Flowerhorn, he's is a male, almost a feet length & from the last week or so he is not stable I suspect he has a swim bladder issue, he has been swimming upside down & nw he has also hurt his head kindly advise
<More likely suffering because of poor environmental conditions. Cichlids are very sensitive to high nitrate levels for example, and these will cause symptoms including poor swimming ability and "pits" (caused by Hexamita infections) on the head.>
diet ( xo humpy head only)
<Needs more than this. Fresh green foods are especially important.>
matter most urgent plz reply
Best Regards,
<Please read here:
The majority of Flowerhorn problems come down to inadequate care. Review their needs and act accordingly. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: very urgent question on Flowerhorn 1/9/11

grt help sir :)
let me do hw you have advised but I don't know hw my fiffy will react or adopt to new food habits :)
god bless
<A good approach is to medicate using a combination of Metronidazole and a Furan compound such as Nitrofurazone, Furanace or Nitrofuran. Together these seem to fix a lot of cichlid problems.
You may be able to buy these medications from the aquarium shop (in the US for example) but often you'll need to ask a vet for them. If the problem isn't too far developed, simply improving the environment may cause the fish to get better. But using these two medications will be essential if the fish has been substantially weakened. Good luck! Neale.>
Re: very urgent question on Flowerhorn 1/9/11
Good Morning,
<Not for me I'm afraid! Feeling very sick, and didn't sleep at all last night.>
I have a atman aquarium tank (AR-980) series & its 3ft length & 18" height ,,
<Apparently this aquarium measures 100 x 45 x 43 cm, i.e., 193,500 cubic centimetres or 193.5 litres or 51.1 US gallons. That's too small for a Flowerhorn, which really needs 75 gal/283 litres.>
I have 3 filters trays which is inbuilt & two filters running round the clock
But from the last 3 years I haven't cleaned 1 tray coz I was advised the fish should have some bacterial water which its used to'¦
<Filters should be cleaned every 6-8 weeks. Put aquarium water in a bucket and rinse off all the media. This will preserve the filter bacteria.>
I have no idea but if you suggest me about it then I can clean up every thing including that tray also which I not touched @ol :(
<I don't understand what "@ol" means.>
I dint feed fiffy two full days & now he's ok slowly getting better am soaking 8 pellets a day & giving him which he eats ;)
Sir I have set temperature @25 (Heater ) should be switched on round the clock ? Or no ?
<He needs a constant 25 C, all the time.>
Now for my fiffy I need to change to some good tin fiber food available in India pls suggest
<Cooked peas and spinach should be available in India. These are good green foods for cichlids. If necessary, let your cichlid starve for a few days. He can go without food for 2-3 weeks if necessary! Fresh greens will reduce the risk of constipation. But if your fish is ALREADY sick, you need a combination of Metronidazole and a Furan compound such as Nitrofurazone, Furanace or Nitrofuran as stated before.>
He is only used to XO
<Don't allow your fish to become addicted to just one food.>
Some time if you can come online you can see my fiffy ;)
God bless
<Cheers, Neale.>

Bloated Flowerhorn Cichlid 12/29/10
Hi, I have a Flowerhorn fish for the past 3 years. She has been very active and playful. My brother cleans the tank once a month or twice a month (4 feet in length) with 40% of fresh water. She feeds on pellets. When we give her live fishes, she kills them, but does not eat them. For the past 1 week, I have noticed that her stomach is bloated. When asked a local aquarist, he examined the fish and gave us some medicine, but still it has not recovered.
It has been 1 week now. She has not eaten for the past 3 weeks. Kindly help.... I don't want her to die. Looking forward for your help.
< Internal infections take time to recover. Keep the water clean and hopefully the medication have some Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace in it.
Try and keep the nitrates under 10 ppm. Monthly water changes may not be enough.-Chuck>

Requesting information on Flower Horn disease
Flowerhorn with HITH Disease 12/9/10

Hello, My flower horn developed medium-size blisters (around 1/4 of an inch) on its head that eventually popped and they now look red as the skin is gone and they are raw (it turned into a big open, raw patch as the blisters exploded). This is the second time it happened. I apparently cured her the first time but he got it for the second time, one after the other, only 2 days apart. Just after I put the carbon in and it looked like the situation was normal, the blistered came back, exactly in the same area as before which is on the
fish's head. She is a female and almost 7 years old, the only fish in a 55 gallon tank running on two Emperor 400 by Marineland, pads and carbon are changed on a regular basis, one filter at a time so that the biological filtration is not affected. I changed the water in large doses (before and after and between
doses) and added cichlids salt and regular salt (the type intended for fish). She was never fed feeders, only pellets, shrimp and bloodworms. She was never overfed or underfed. The fish was treated with E.M. Erythromycin.
While being medicated, I used an Aqua Clear filter 500, the largest one from the manufacturer and two
large air stones. I did that in order not to infect the emperor filters and I used a 30 gallon tank as a quarantine setup. She is still in the quarantine tank as of now. What would be the next step?
Thank you in advance for all your help. Best regards.
< Your Flowerhorn has a case of Hole In The Head (HITH) disease. It generally affects New World cichlids. The cause is unknown at this time. It may be related to stress, diet or environmental factors. For now I would recommend checking the water chemistry. The nitrates should be under 20 ppm but the lower the better. I would change brand of pellets to see if that made a difference. I would skip the bloodworms for now. Try treating with a medicated food with Metronidazole in it. The open wounds can be treated with Furan-2.-Chuck>

FH .. Urgent problem Female Flowerhorn Possibly Egg Bound 10/31/2010
Hey WWM. Salute you all. This is Sam again. I have the following problem. My female FH wants to lay eggs since past 6 days but is not able to or doesn't want to lay due to some reasons. Problem is she has a black spot and a tail like structure on her papilla. I don't know what is it. I even don't weather is is normal or not. I have attached some pics for the same. I also performed a water change ( 70% ) because I thought that water must be the reason. She has stripes all over the body and swims freely with the male. Her size is 3.5". Hope you reply me as soon as possible cuz this problem is not letting me sleep ! Thanz in advance ! WWM rockZ !! :)
< If the pair are acting like they are going to spawn, like digging a pit and flaring, then I would increase the water temp to the low to mid 80's F. That should get them going. If they are not going through the courting rituals then it could be an internal blockage that has forced the genitalia out of the body cavity. Treat in a hospital tank with a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace. If she is still eating normally then give her a medicated food with these medications already in them.-Chuck>

Re: hi crew.. (sick Flowerhorn, no data) 10/17/10
Thanks for early reply :). Appreciated ,. Neale,.
<No problem.>
As you wanted more information with regard to other aspects I am providing you ,. One and half year aged flower horn ,. My tank size is 300 liters ,.
<80 US gallons'¦ a good amount for a single Flowerhorn.>
No heater,,
<Whether this is acceptable will depend on where you live. An average water temperature of 25 C is about right, slightly cooler at night will be fine. On the other hand most cichlids will be stressed by being kept colder than 18-22 C, depending on the species.>
I am feeding grand sumo pellets in the morning 10 pellets ,. Humpy head pellets in the night 10 pellets ,. At times boiled green peas once a week ,.
<While these are good foods, I would vary them a bit more. More plant material would be good, e.g., spinach or floating Indian Fern. I'd also offer a lot more "whole" foods, for example krill, bloodworms or earthworms. These have lots of indigestible material that helps keep bowel movements regular. The problem with pellet foods is they tend to cause constipation. If you imagine a person who just at meat but no vegetables, you can see the problem. In the wild cichlids will be sifting small invertebrates out of mud, and in the process eating a lot of indigestible matter that acts like fibre.>
Water test all under control ,. I mean the parameters are fine ,.
<Meaning what? Zero ammonia and zero nitrite? Nitrate level 20 mg/l or less?>
temperature 25 degree Celsius,, I siphon the tank once a week,, 20% water change weekly,,
<Sounds fine.>
All is fine with my flower horn I am worried for the reason its kind of floating near the top of the tank ,. Its not that its not moving around it is but kind of head semi down position mostly staying on top ,. Help Neale...tc cr azam..
<My gut feeling here is that constipation is the most likely problem. If appetite is normal, and there's no sign of wounds on the body or tears in the fins, and the fish has normal colouration, it's most likely constipation is the problem. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: re: hi crew.. (sick Flowerhorn, no data) [Bob, bad genes?]<<Maybe>> 10/19/10
hi Neale....sorry to bother you ...kinda worried for my Flowerhorn...read other FAQ on your website but couldn't relate my problem with them that's why bothering you ,,,,Neal I think its getting worse the problem ....from the past two days my Flowerhorn is struggling to stay upright
<I can see.>
...its like its floating around at the top of the water surface...and mostly headstanding ....tail up....head down position...and even though its swimming but the head is pointing down always ....its appetite is good, coloration is good ...responding nicely to the finger movement....Neal got a question ....if constipated do they do head standing...'¦.
<Not usually, no.>
two days once he is pooping and the color of the feces is light brown ,,,this I can confirm to you is for the fact that I kept it a bare bottom tank....if as you said constipation what is the treatment for it ?????
<Feed more green foods, e.g., cooked peas, cooked spinach. Also use "whole" crustaceans, particularly brine shrimp and daphnia. Do not, do not, DO NOT use any dried foods (pellets, flake, etc.) until the fish is swimming normally.>
attaching few pictures of it ....hope you can catch the problem ...thanks a ton Neale for your timely help'¦.
<Constipation might be an issue, but my honest guess is a deformed swim bladder. In other words, bad genes. The problem with Flowerhorn cichlids is they are mass produced by people interested in money. In Asia especially, some people think these fish are "lucky" so breeders produce lots and lots of them. These breeders have no interest at all in whether they are good quality fish. After all, a sale is a sale! Once the fish is out the door, and the money is in the bank, who cares whether the fish lives a happy, healthy life? So the bottom line is that unless you buy a Flowerhorn from a breeder you know and trust, there's almost no way to be sure what you're getting is any good. Cichlids do sometimes go loopy and lose their balance if exposed to poor environmental conditions, e.g., cold, but assuming you are providing the right conditions -- 25 C, 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 10+ degrees dH hardness, pH 7-8 -- then my money would be on either constipation or bad genes.>
tk cr
<I have no idea what "tk" and "cr" mean.>
<Cheers, Neale.>
Re: re: hi crew.. (sick Flowerhorn, no data) [Bob, bad genes?] 10/19/10
oh I c ....hoping that god willingly it should be constipation will stop feeding dry pellets...and start with the diet what you have suggested
<Very good.>
..hope he gets back to his normal self .
<Let's hope!>
Neal if I mean if its a genetical disorder what do you suggest ...is there any possible treatment which I will be very glad to provide my Flowerhorn with,
<Not really. Genes are genes, and you can't "fix" them.>
is there anything we can do to make him comfortable should I put an end to his suffering..
<If he's happily eating, I wouldn't worry too much. But if he can't feed himself, then that's more of a problem.>
since myself and my family are very much attached to it...cant see it suffering '¦
<Do read here:
("tk cr" means TAKE CARE....apologies for that'¦.
<I see. We don't really like "text speak" here at Wet Web Media. I'm too old for that sort of thing!>
Neal can you let me know looking at the pictures whether my Flowerhorn is a male or a female....thanks a lot Neale for advice appreciated...god bless'¦.
<You are most welcome. Cheers, Neale.>

hi crew.. (sick Flowerhorn, no data) - 10/09/10
Hi crew ...this is Azam ,. I am from India ,. First of all let me appreciate you guys for doing such a wonderful job for providing a much needed advice on flower horn species ,. gr8 help thanks a lot ,. Problem with my flower horn is off late it started staying near top of the tank with head pointing semi down ,. It is very active ,. Appetite is great ,. Colour is good ,. Normal poop ,. Water parameters all under control as you guys have advised in your FAQ section ,. It did had a bit of itching problem so gave it salt treatment itching gone,. Only problem is its staying at one place semi head pointing down position ,. Kindly help ,.
Thanks Azam ,.god bless ,.
<Hello Azam. Thanks for the kind words. It's difficult to say what the matter might be here. There's no information. How big is the aquarium? What is the water quality like? What is the water chemistry? What is the temperature? What do you feed your fish? Let's recap. Flowerhorn cichlids need a 280 litre/75 gallon aquarium. The water temperature should be close to 25 C/77 F. Water chemistry must be moderately hard to hard: 10-25 degrees dH, pH 7.5-8.0. Water quality must be excellent: 0 ammonia, 0
nitrite, and very critically, nitrate level must not be above 20 mg/l. Diet should be mixed, including both green foods and meaty foods. So while flake and pellets are fine, Flowerhorn cichlids must also have cooked peas and spinach. Do not use "feeder fish". Be very, VERY careful whenever using other types of live foods as some, like Tubifex, can introduce serious diseases. If you have not done one or all of the things on this list, then there's a good chance you are making your Flowerhorn sick. Do read here:
Cheers, Neale.>

My FH, reading 9/20/10
Hi Crew,
Could you please let me know if my FH has dropsy? If so, please advise which medicine I can give.
Thank you and regards,
<Not dropsical; read here:
but a bit "fat"... Read here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>Re:

My FH 9/20/10
Thank you so much, Bob. My worries are now gone.
<Ah, good>
I'm feeding my FH with SUMO 2x a day, do you think this is OK or shall I reduce it 1x a day?
<Twice should be fine, better than once. But just smaller portions>
<Cheers, BobF>
Re: My FH 10/27/10

Hi Bob,
How are you?
<Fine, thank you>
I would like to check with you if there still a luck for me to decrease a bit at least the bloated tummy of my lovable FH.
Thank you and regards,
<Mmm, don't understand what you mean... Have you reduced the amount of foods? Tried Epsom salt? BobF>
Re: My FH 10/29/10

Hi Bob,
<Big O>
I used Epsom salt just yesterday and will continue monitoring him. Is it OK
to feed him small amount during medication?
<Certainly, yes>
<And you. BobF>

Need urgent advise about my Flowerhorn... hlth., env. 9/12/10
Hi Team,
Thank You in advance for any help / advise you can provide about my ailing Flowerhorn. It has been about 20 days since my flower horn ate food and it has been lying at the bed of the tank. I was out of town before that and
hence the water was dirty by the time I could come back. I guess it is suffering from some infection. I saw the FAQ section on your website and tried a few things but it still looks sick and hardly moves around.
I have been changing water every other day since then and I have ensured it is at half the normal tank capacity. I was advised to use tetracycline (Resteclin 250mg). I also tried a TREATING REAGENT FOR INTERNAL PARASITE and 3rd Generation Yellow Powder for external infections but none of these are working. The size of my tank is about 2.5 ft by 2 ft. Tank capacity when full is about 75 liters. I have a filter which is also clean and a heater which is on 24 hours and is set at 28 Celsius. Would be happy to provide more details and pictures. Kindly advise at the earliest.
<Hello Supreeth. The simple answer is this: your aquarium is too small, and your Flowerhorn is dying because of poor environmental conditions. Medication is not going to help until you fix the living conditions. Start by reading here:
For a single adult Flowerhorn cichlid you will need at least 250 litres/66 US gallons. A juvenile might be kept in a marginally smaller tank, perhaps 180 litres/50 US gallons until it is about 10-12 cm long. You also need a very robust filtration system; I would recommend a large external canister filter such as an Eheim 2217 (1000 litres/hour turnover) or equivalent.
Water chemistry must be hard and alkaline; aim for 10-20 degrees dH, pH 7.5-8.0. Water quality must be good: 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, less than 20 mg/l nitrate. Water temperature around 25 C/77 F. Unless you can guarantee
all of these things, your Flowerhorn will die. An aquarium that contains 75 l/20 US gallons is best used for small community fish: Neons, Danios, Corydoras, etc.
They may not be "auspicious" or "lucky" but at least they'll stay alive.
Cheers, Neale.>

Flower longhorn
Flowerhorn Questions, dis, breeding/sexing... -- 7/12/10

Hi, I have to say I've been reading your articles and found it very useful.
I have a couple of question
1) My flower longhorn recently attracted some type of infection, and have got some of capsule from the aquarium to treat it. I have to take him out every two days to treat him for 4 hrs. He now looks a lot better but have a split open wound across his forehead which before antibiotics had white fluffy stuff showing. It doesn't have the fluffy stuff now but a wide hole, will that heal back together?
< The white fluffy material was a fungus that is now gone. The wound will probably heal but there probably will be a scar.>
2)will my longhorns breed in a 125 gallon tank with 5 bloody parrots and a Arowana?
< When they decide to breed they will probably have no problem chasing the other fish away?>
3) I have what I thought was a male and female but recently saw the smaller one developing a hump and top and bottom fins to be longer then his middle fins, can it most likely that it is actually a male not a female?
< Longer fins are usually sexual characteristics of a male.-Chuck>

Help Regarding infection - Flowerhorn
Flowerhorn With Internal Infection 6/24/10

Hello ,Greeting from Mohan, Bangalore.
I have a Flowerhorn which is sick from past few days. I had fed him with live feed and after few days it started getting white patches on black middle part. We treated him with tetracycline and raw salt as advised by the pet store owner. The patches have been cured but now it developed what I think is intestinal infection (intestine protruding from anal part) . its stopped eating.
I am keeping the temp as 29C and currently changing 30 % water every alternate day. I have also kept a air filter running the entire day.
< Unfortunately, when antibiotics are used to cure the bacteria on the outside of the fish, they effect the internal good bacteria that break down the fish food in the gut. When this happens sometimes bad bacteria and other pathogens get a foot hold in the gut. This causes intestinal blockages. The bacteria break down the food in the gut and cause gas/bloating and fluid retention. Treat with a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace. These medications are available online at Drsfostersmith.com.-Chuck>

Re: Help Regarding infection - Flowerhorn 6/25/10
Thank you for the response & I have already treated with Flagyl and Nitrofuranace after getting the information from your web but it is not working.
Kindly suggest me , I need help.
<Flagyl and Nitrofuranace WILL work, but only if [a] the fish is not already dying; and [b] the environmental conditions are appropriate. Let's recap. For a Flowerhorn cichlid you need 280 litres/75 US gallons and a
filter rated at NOT LESS than 8 times the volume of the aquarium per hour (i.e., for a 75 gallon tank, an 8 x 75 = 600 gallons/hour filter). Water quality MUST be excellent: 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and nitrate levels less than 20 mg/l. Water chemistry MUST be hard and basic: 10+ degrees dH, pH 7.5-8.0. Temperature should be middling, 24-26 C/75-79 F. All water added to the aquarium should be treated for chlorine, and if appropriate where you live, ammonia, Chloramine and copper as well. Without information on your aquarium, water chemistry and water quality, we cannot say anything else about why your fish is sick. But be assured, 99 times out of 100, sick fish are sick because of their environment. Cheers, Neale.>

Sickly Flowerhorn, no useful data 6/23/10
I've been searching the Internet to find a cure for my Flowerhorn fish. I have my fish for two years and nothing ever happen to him. Recently we move our 40gl tank to the front living room and using the water holes in the front of the house. He got sick. First he swim side ways and then upside down. Next he stay at the bottom of the tank. And now he is flowing upside down close to the surface of the water. He also have a bowed belly. He doesn't eat for about 3 weeks already.
<Very bad.>
We try to feed him peas but no luck. He would not eat anything else. He is energetic. Lately his poop is yellow and it come out way small then normal.
<Possibly Hexamita. Usually caused by poor environmental conditions. Do read here:
For this species, you need 75 gallon aquarium. The water must be hard and basic; aim for pH 7.5-8, 10-25 degrees dH. The temperature should be middling, around 25 C/77 F. Water quality must be excellent; 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and nitrate level less than 20 mg/l. Hexamita infections are very, VERY common when cichlids are kept poorly. The only cure is Metronidazole, administered via their food (not added to the water), as stated here:
Virtually nothing else works.>
I don't know what to do for him. Can you help me please? Reply to this email. Thank you.
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>

Broken spine in dorsal fin 6/16/10
Hi Neale!!!!
This morning I was doing a 30% water change in my aquarium for which I had to net out my fish for a while, however when I was netting it out it suddenly jumped out of the net and fell on the ground and one of its spine
in dorsal fin broke, and now its not looking good on him, my question is if the spine will regrow????
I have attached a pic of my FH for you to see and understand the situation better.
Thank you
<Hello. Yes, given good conditions this fin damage should heal. Cheers, Neale.>

Re: Broken spine in dorsal fin 6/16/10
hi Neale!!!
thanks for replying, sorry to bother you again, m sorry if my question is stupid, I wanted to know if the spine will regrow, and you have replied as 'it will heal', so should I understand that it will regrow because spine is a hard bone which is broken and wanted to know if that will ever regrow?
<As I said, it'll heal. But I can't say for sure whether the spine will regrow. It should do, but like any bone regrowth, it might not be 100% perfect. Cheers, Neale.>

Superficially Damaged Flowerhorn Hump
Damaged Flowerhorn -- 06/9/10

Dear WetWebMedia Team, My lovely, masterpiece (or very close) 9" Flowerhorn just damaged his quite large hump (possibly on a powerhead filter). The damaged area is right near the top and about a half cm in diameter total, though only 1/3 cm is actually open and pink (but not very deep). There is some damaged tissue still hanging around the edge, which has blackened or bruised. Otherwise he is acting, eating and swimming robustly as usual.
What is the best way to heal this wound and do you think it will leave a permanent mark? This would be shame as otherwise he's stunning. Also, will the damaged tissue (about .3 cm in length) on the edge just go away or will it need to be trimmed? Unfortunately to my knowledge we have no fish doctors around here and I don't feel confident to do any such trimming myself with this wild guy. Water quality in his 55 gallon tank is very good, with 50% changes every 10-12 days and all well within normal parameters (though a bit on the warmer side, avg. 30 degree C, as with my other 2 tanks, because I'm in balmy Phuket, Thailand but they're all pretty used to it). Sole tank make is a 5 inch Pleco. How about adding Malachite Green F? Or should I just do nothing and keep water
clean? I know it's difficult for you to tell without a pic (my camera got sand in it and needs some help itself) but any advice would be very appreciated. Kind Regards, Barrett
<The biggest concern would be infection. Keep the water clean and watch for redness or fungus. The dangling tissue should be removed to leave a clean wound. If infection starts to show up then treat with Nitrofuranace. It is
effective against bacteria and fungus. It will probably leave a scar that will heal but may leave an imperfection.-Chuck>
Re: Superficially Damaged Flowerhorn Hump
Herbal Wound Treatment 6/15/10

Hi Chuck, Thanks for your fast reply and sorry for my delayed response.
Actually what I did was put 3 'herbal sacks' into his tank and by the very next day the wound was already mostly healed and is now about 100%!
I have no idea what's in these sacks --they're obviously locally produced as they come in a small plastic bag with only a photo-copied little piece of paper that in Thai and English says:
"Enhancing Herbs for Fighting Fish"
-- Helps rid lice, heals bodily wounds and cures eye diseases.
-- Enriches fighting fishes natural color and strengthens scales.
Of course Siamese fighting fish are cichlids
< No, they are not.>
so upon the recommendation of one of these fish shops I usually put in 1 or 2 of these little sacks once in a while in all 3 tanks (Africans/Blue Texas Cichlid/Flowerhorn) but for the Flowerhorn this time I put in 3 sacks at the same time, and the water got a brownish or tea color to it within a couple of hours. By the next day his wound miraculously was about 90% healed, and then by the 2nd day almost completely. The coloring in the water was pretty much gone by the 3rd day (I didn't take out the bag of charcoal buried at the bottom of my internal trickle down filter), then I did about 50% water change on the 4th day.
I really wish I knew what was in these herbal sacks (I kind of suspect tea tree leaves mixed with something else, given the water color, but not sure because from what I understand tea tree oil is good for fungal/bacterial infections, not so much for wounds, which this surely was). Anyway, whatever is in them really did a good job (and by the next day all the dead tissue was pretty much gone too; now there is only a very tiny black spot on his head which I'm pretty confident will go away or be covered with new skin, esp. as his Nuchal hump is growing so fast).
So thanks again for your input Chuck, I've read many of your other posts and it's comforting to know that there are people like yourself out there to help fish lovers in need! Kind Regards, Barrett
<Many herbal treatments acidify the water and inhibit bacterial growth.
Glad to hear everything turned out all right.-Chuck>

A little question pls.. FH dis. f' 6/2/10
hi WWM crew, I would like to ask how long does a Flowerhorn tail recover?
(I mean the tail was split into two due to the females aggression)
<Depends on the water quality. If the water quality is good, then the tail fin should heal within a few months. But if the water quality is poor, or the caudal peduncle is damaged, not just the fin membrane, then the fin may not heal properly.>
and another thing, he was also bitten on his XXXX and some part of his body but only bite wounds, would it leave a scar or will return to its natural "look"?
<Again, depends on water quality.>
I'm worried a bit. T_T
thank you..
<Cheers, Neale.>
Re: a little question pls.. 6/2/10

oh ok..at least I know it would heals..I thought it was hopeless.. thank you very much!
<My pleasure. Cheers, Neale.>

Flowerhorn with head pointing down
Flowerhorn With Internal Infection 5/23/10

Hi, My 8-year-old Flowerhorn suddenly becomes sick the last 2 days. He doesn't eat anymore. He constantly stays still in the same place with his head pointing down, his tail pointing up, even at night when he is supposed to rest at the bottom of the tank. I do notice some minor swelling on his stomach. I searched your website and it seemed to suggest that he could have a bacteria infection in his intestine. You suggested cleaning the tank (50%?) and treat with a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace. You also mentioned to make sure the Flowerhorn does have the infection before treating, or you can kill the fish. How do I know for sure? Thank you in advance for your answer. I hope I can help the fish because I had him since he was a little baby. Tam
< If you have checked the water quality and everything else has remained constant then it is time to treat.-Chuck>

my baby is very poorly, this is my last chance -- 03/20/10
Flowerhorn Dying

Hi WetWebMedia crew!!! I've attach pictures of before and what it looks like at this moment.
I have a 11" Flowerhorn. When I got him, all was fine, eating well and feeding out off my hands, chasing other fishes, you name it he did it. One day I've notice he didn't want to know but I didn't think nothing of it until I've notice his lips started to get bigger. At this point I started to panic as my other fh had died of duck lips. I went to my local aquatic store and they told me to use jbl spirohexol with salt, so got back home, moved him to 1oo litres tank,30% water change ,temps down to 75-76. My local aquatic store tested the water and all is good and added jbl spirohexol and salt. It is now day 6 and not any better, in the 6 days I've done a 30% water change 3 time now and each time I done a water change, I've added the jbl spirohexol and salt. Until this day there is no improvement
and now I've notice he is starting to get cotton patches like soggy white bread on each side of his face and also just in his lips. I have spoke to 3 local aquatic stores about buying Metronidazole and they all haven't heard this make before. I am now so need your help as I do not want to lose him,. Please advice me on what to do. I look forward to hearing from you. regards.
<I have heard about this problem in a few large public aquariums and with other aquarists that keep large central American cichlids. It may actually be a virus that is untreatable and often fatal. I would try a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace in case this disease is something else. These medications can be bought online at drsfostersmith.com.-Chuck>

very sick Flowerhorn 2/25/10
We have a 120 gallon tank and we have an 11 inch male red devil and 4 channel catfish.
<Hope you know how big Ictalurus catfish get! This tank isn't nearly big enough for them. Indeed, they're pond fish rather than aquarium fish.>
We just got a 7 inch female Flowerhorn 1 month ago.
<While the Central American cichlid/North American catfish combo can work -- I've done it myself -- you do need to be extremely careful. The catfish are far bigger (eventually) and much more predatory than the cichlids, and even a big cichlid can end up being bullied or simply eaten.>
Everybody gets along fine, very peaceful tank.
<Thus far.>
They mated right away and she laid eggs for about 36 hours. She ate most of them.
<Yes. Not uncommon.>
1 day later we noticed these small white skinny things attached to our glass, very tiny wormlike. We treated the tank for parasites and changed 1/3 of the water and treated again. The wormlike things are still on the glass.
<Likely free-living nematodes or planarians. In themselves harmless, and only likely to be killed with anti-Helminth medications. But they do indicate a substrate that contains a lot of organic matter, which in turn implies a dirty aquarium with overfeeding, not enough mechanical filtration, and infrequent water changes. In short, they're the aquarium equivalent of cockroaches.>
A couple of her eggs on the rock are fuzzy.
2 days after she gave birth, she devoured 2 meal worms and 1 small red worm. It is now 5 days after she gave birth and she lost all her color and is laying on the bottom barely breathing.
<Unlikely anything to do with the worms.>
All the other fish are fine and are not attacking her. Why is she dying, is she constipated or is this from giving birth
<Unlikely to be either of these.>
or is it those small wormlike things attached to our glass and rocks?
<No, not this either.>
What are those things and how can I get rid of them.
<Better filter, cleaner substrate, more water changes, less food dumped in the tank. Just like 'roaches in a home, the issue isn't killing them, but creating conditions that doesn't attract them. Even if you magically killed 99.9% of them tonight, the population would grow right back again, if the aquarium remained as it is now. Just like 'roaches.>
Water temp is 80 and ph level is 7.5. There are no marks or parasites on her , she is just a pale gray and lifeless.
<Test the water quality. Look for signs of bullying and aggression.>
We bought this tank 2 months ago from a person who used it as a saltwater tank but then he got a parasite that killed everything.
<He didn't have anything of the kind. That's a silly way of saying he didn't look after his fish, they all died, and rather than accept he did something wrong, he's going to blame Mother Nature. Gimme a break!>
The tank sat empty for a year and then was cleaned out. Could this be the same parasite,
but then why are my other fish doing so well?
<If a social issue, likely because one or other fish is bullying or harassing her, perhaps by night in the case of Ictalurus spp. I cannot stress too strongly how predatory these fish. Moreover, adult male cichlids can be, will be, extremely aggressive towards unresponsive females, especially when cooped up in a small aquarium like yours.>
Why is it just the Flowerhorn and we need to get rid of those wormlike things?
<See above.>
Please help
<Cheers, Neale.>

Help my Flowerhorn is sick....
Sick Flowerhorn With Internal Infection 1/11/10

Good day to everyone. We have a very sick Flowerhorn. We really don't know what is happening. This thing started several weeks ago but I can't give you the exact date. At first we noticed that the Flowerhorn is no longer eating and stays in the bottom corner of the tank. Later on, the fish started to produce, I'm not pretty sure what you call it, but its like a white mucus..(a white circle cotton like) that its coming out on the fish stomach. There are times the fish is covered with white thing that looks like a web. Her color starts to fade as well. At times the fish looks so dark. There was also a time that the fish floats, as if it was dead, but its not. Please help us, thanks..
< Your Flowerhorn has an internal infection caused by stress. It could be poor water quality, poor diet, or something else. Check the water quality.
Ammonia and nitrates should be zero. The nitrates should be under 20 ppm.
Treat with a combination of Nitrofuranace and Metronidazole.-Chuck>

Flowerhorn with fin problems 12/17/09
I have a male Flowerhorn 5 inches in 20 gallon tank a small home I guess but will upgrade it to large tank soon.
<Yes, it would be a good thing. These big Cichlids are high waste-producers.>
I have a power filter and a sponge filter installed. A Thermostat. Water parameters are nearly normal to the prescribed limit by you.
<I'd like to know these numbers. What about them is "nearly" normal? What temperature is the tank?>
I do 30 percent water changes twice a week.
<A good maintenance schedule for this fish in the tank size he's in, but the numbers on Ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrate are going to give me a better "picture" here.
Recently I have seen some tips of my fish fins have become white. What is the name of the disease and could you suggest the treatment for the same.
<Well, I'd hesitate to suggest anything right now. There's really not enough information to go on. Please provide those parameters, as well as the tank temperature. Is there a chance you can take a photo? Are the fins split or jagged at all? Is he acting normally? There are some "diseases" that cause fin erosion, but they are things like Finrot, which is usually caused by poor water quality or some other environmental stressor. What foods are you feeding? So, answering those questions above is going to get us further toward figuring out what's going on. Have you
taken the time to read what is archived on WWM about Flowerhorns?

Bloated Flowerhorn 12/16/2009
We have a 2 year old Flowerhorn around 10inches in length and looks to have a bloated stomach just behind his gills.
<What are your Ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrate levels?>
We feed him Spectrum pellets for the most part
<Are you mixing this with any greens or wet-frozen foods? Dry pellets lead to constipation when fed exclusively.>
and about a month ago he stopped eating to we introduced a few feeder fish to his tank, I see now that feeders aren't the best things for him
<Yes. Hopefully you quarantined these fish to avoid the introduction of a parasite as much as possible. Besides, as you can already see, there were several other things to check out before feeding feeders, such as water quality and diet.>
but after he ate the feeders over several days he started to eat his pellets again. It looks like he is uncomfortable and stays on top of the tank in one corner which is unusual for him as he has always been active.
We have tried some canned peas but he doesn't seem interested in them at all this is about day 3
<Do you mean day 3 since he ate the feeders? And before that he didn't eat for a month? I just want to get a good idea of how long this has been going on.>
we have also noticed he keeps picking up gravel and holding it in his mouth are they like some birds and this helps their digestive system.
<Nah, he shouldn't be eating gravel. If he has swallowed any, though, this could be what's wrong, but I'd check on these other things first.>
Please let us know what we can do to help him as he is an awesome fish.
<The first thing to do is test water quality. You don't mention how often you do maintenance on this tank, but the tests are going to reveal if you're doing it often enough. If you'd like to write back with those numbers, feel free. If he is bloated, the first thing I would try is Epsom Salt in the amount of one tablespoon per ten gallons. You can dissolve it in a cup of warm water, let everything cool to room temperature, and then add your dechlorinator to the cup, and add to the tank. You'd dose enough for half the tank's volume the first day, and half the second day.
However, please test water first. I'm going to include a link to our archived information on Flowerhorns. You'll see that there are a lot of other foods he could be eating along with the pellets to maintain healthy digestion.
Clicking those links above the article's title will lead you to information on feeding and other aspects of care. Please write back if you have any questions after reading that information. There are a couple of things that could be going on here, and the introduction of the feeders doesn't help matters at all, but I think testing water and then, if all is well
(Ammonia and Nitrite zero, Nitrate under 20) then the Epsom Salt treatment is the first thing to do.>
Thanks again
<You're welcome.
Re: Bloated Flowerhorn -- 12/16/09

Hi Melinda,
<Hi Fred.>
First of all thanks for replying so quick, <No problem!>
and I'm sorry I wasn't clearer on the time frames of everything.
<Thanks for writing back to clarify.>
He wasn't eating a month ago and that is when we introduced the feeders and then he was feeding well again until 3 days ago.
<Okay. I've got it now. So this problem seems relatively new, but may be a continuation of what was going on before, when he stopped eating.>
We keep him in a 30 gallon tank and try to change the water every week this is an aquarium kept in our office at work so some times it is hit and miss on changing the water.
<This is a small tank for an adult Flowerhorn, Fred. Skipping water changes isn't doing him any favors.>
We do check the Ammonia levels and such and that isn't the problem at this time.
<It's not that I don't believe you... it's just that numbers are a lot more helpful. See, the numbers are completely objective data -- that way, they can be interpreted by me, who is trying to help you. The information you're giving me re: water quality is subjective -- your interpretation of the water quality. Obviously, we may have the exact same interpretation of a set of data, but we might not! That's why I love to get numbers. Then my brain gets some exercise.>
He is also a darker shade of red the last few days.
<Yes, this is indicative of stress. Could be just as a result of having to go!>
It really looks like he just has to go if you know what I mean.
We will try the Epsom salts like you suggest and let you know how it works.
<Okay. Again, test that water. The small tank and lack of really consistent attention make me think "Nitrate! Nitrate! Nitrate!" It could be totally fine, but I can't help but wonder if something is amiss with that water quality. The Epsom Salt will hopefully work wonders on his problem, but only if everything else is ideal, as well. Again, be mindful of what you're feeding -- if it's only a dry pellet, mix in some wet-frozen foods or veggies, as well. There are some good feeding suggestions under "Flowerhorn Feeding" in that link I sent you.>
Thanks again,
<You're welcome.>

Pls find what disease my baby short-body FH has; I think it is fin rot -- 12/08/09
Hi There
<Hi Push.>
1 week ago, I have bought 2 inch short-body male FH. he has black like thing on fore head, fin and tail. I asked fish shop owner what was the black things over the body. he said it just a color. after few days the black color was fading but a day before yesterday, I saw my FH has black spot on gill and middle of his body.
<Your Flowerhorn will change color as he ages, but your observance that the "color" has come and gone, and is now in different places, means this isn't normal coloration.>
and the tail has become white at edges and is dissolving and also split into two. sometimes he rub his body over stone.
my friend said he has fin rot disease,
<This could absolutely be the case. Also, the rubbing over the stone (this is called "flashing") is most likely as a result of the same causes as the Finrot -- the poor water quality that's present in the tank.>
so I have done 50% water change and
added anti-fungus medicine and salt. raised the tank temperature to 28 C.
<The water change is doing the most good for him here. The anti-fungal is a good idea in theory, but he most likely would have fought off this infection on his own if he had been completely healthy. There is a possibility he was having problems before you got him, but putting him in an uncycled tank has multiplied those problems. The heat and salt aren't going to do much here, and could even stress him out more. I'd stop with the salt -- it's not an effective treatment for fungus.>
he hide at corner all the time except during meal time. Could anyone tell me what disease my FH has.
<It does sound like he has Finrot, but without a photo, it's hard to be sure. He's also suffering from ammonia burn, which is what's causing him to flash against the rocks. There are likely a lot of other things going on as well, and all of them come down to your having placed him in an uncycled system. That's what this all comes down to -- placing fish into an uncycled system will produce varying symptoms in fish, but all of them can be fixed by fixing the water.>
what should I do to cure him.
<Fix water quality. Buy some test kits for Ammonia, Nitrite, and Nitrate, and wait for the cycle to complete. You'll need to do large, frequent water changes in order to insure that toxic Ammonia and Nitrite are kept as low as possible. Do you run any other aquariums? Borrowing some "seeded" media -- media that contains the nitrifying bacteria necessary for the cycle to occur -- will help speed the process in the Flowerhorn's tank. If you don't have any, you could ask a friend to borrow some.>
click the link for photos of my FH
<This takes me to the album site, but there is no photo on the page!>
he is in 30 gallon tank with power filter. the current in the tank is high.
the tank is in cycling process.
<This is your problem, Push. As stated above, get your hands on some test kits and start testing. Do those large, frequent water changes. Try to get a hold of some cycled media and place it in your filter. He's just not going to heal, no matter what you put in the tank, until water quality is pristine. I'd avoid putting anything else in the tank until you've got water quality under control, because adding various things is only going to stress him out more.
Here is a link that I think will be of help to you:
Please write back if you have any questions.
Thanks in advance

Male Cichlid Beating On Female Cichlid, FHs 12/6/09
Hello, can you please help me. my female Flowerhorn was attacked by my male Flowerhorn. so I removed the female Flowerhorn from the tank. now she is badly injured and can hardly move around. Do you know if there is anything I can do, to help nurse my female Flowerhorn back to health. Thank You.
< Usually the female is smaller than the male. Experienced cichlid keepers place a piece of plastic pipe that is only big enough to allow the female in and not the male. This gives the female a place to escape from a eager
male looking to breed. In the wild the male is looking for a female willing to spawn with him. He chases or kills the unwilling females and tries to attract another that will. If the pipe is not too attractive then others have been using ZooMed Aquarium Logs too. These have the additional advantage in that they float and allow the female a chance to get to food more easily. Now that the female is damaged you need to carefully nurse her back to health. Luckily cichlids are pretty hardy creatures and things may not seem as bad as they first appear. First keep the water very clean. High nitrogenous waste levels will lead to diseases that will kill if going untreated. Do lots of water changes and keep up on the filter cleaning.
Treat with an antibiotic called Nitrofuranace. It will work against disease causing bacteria and fungi. Add a little salt to the water. This will put a slime on the fish to keep parasites off. Look at some of the water conditioners that have some sort of wound control. Use these when changing water. When your fish acts hungry then go ahead and feed her. Good luck.-Chuck>

Flowerhorn Doesn't Eat 11/20/09
Hello, I have a 72 gallon bow front with a 10 inch FH and a common plecostomus.
I have had the FH for about 4 months now. Up until about a week or 2 ago I noticed that he had not wanted to eat as much and now not at all. I have 2 under gravel filters and a magnum 350 filter also, plenty of oxygen (2-4 inch air stones, 1 large Volcano (air pump) I clean the tank once per week (15% of the water) The water tests good, my water is very hard. I have added aquarium salt to the water, and vitamins to make sure he is getting nutrition. My Pleco eats like a pig (he loves his zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower and algae wafers.) I noticed when I went home last night that my FH has a raised bump on his head (under the skin above the bridge of his nose on his kok) Otherwise he looks good, but that did concern me and the fact that he is not eating. Sometimes he hovers at the bottom of the tank or in the corner by a plant, but
otherwise looks at the top of the tank for food. I feed him PE mysis and he will not eat it now, he is a finicky eater, so this is what I fed him. I offer him food and he looks at it and lets it go to the bottom or
doesn't bother with it. He usual gets excited when he sees me and comes to the top and I rub his head, but its getting to where he isn't doing this as much and I haven't seen him rearrange his tank in a few days.
Any advice or suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Thank you,
Dee Lopez
<One of two things is going on here. The first, your fish has been imprinted on a certain food type and will not try anything else. Do not offer food for three days. He should be pretty hungry by then. Offer a quality food and leave it in the tank for five minutes, then remove any uneaten food. Try this every day for a week. If he still does not eat then there may be an internal infection. Treat with a combination of Metronidazole and Nitrofuranace.-Chuck>
Re: Flowerhorn Cichlid
Finding Medications Online 11/21/09

Chuck, Thank you for your help. Do you know which website sells Nitrofuranace?
I am having trouble finding it locally or on-line. Dee
< Most fish stores carry the medication. If you are having trouble I know DrFoster&Smith carry it for sure.-Chuck>

Re: I am worried. (Flowerhorn, do real data) 11/16/09
Flowerhorn Won't Eat

Hi I need a small help
for the past one week my Flowerhorn is not having any food, the waste is in white colour like a thread & its standing at the bottom of the tank and it is 50% active.
I tried with cooked peas, chicken liver/hear & humpy head both everything turned out to be waste, it didn't have any thing.
Can you please help me, he is tired and even the head and body is becoming thin day by day.
< Sounds like an internal infection. Do a 50% water change and treat with a combination of Nitrofuranace and Metronidazole. Medicate as per the directions on the package. This is usually caused by stress, poor diet or poor water quality.-Chuck>
Re: I am worried. (Flowerhorn, do real data)
Flowerhorn With Internal Infection -- 11/17/2009

Hi I did a water change yesterday.
Can you suggest a capsule with combination of Nitrofuranace and Metronidazole.
< Sorry, No combination exists. You will have to buy them separately and combine them yourself. They can be purchased online.-Chuck>
Re: I am worried. (Flowerhorn, do real data)... still 11/25/09

My flower horn is not taking food for the past 15 days
<!? Very bad>
and it is standing in the corner of the tank.
I tried with peas, humpy head, shrimp, green leaves, chicken leaver it not taking any thing.
Can you please guide me & the waste is in white colour like a thread, what should I do?
Please advice me ..waiting for you
<... Something is wrong... likely with the environment. Please read here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>
Re: I am worried. (Flowerhorn, do real data)... what gives? 11/26/09

I know something is wrong.
to my surprise I saw some worms(tiny worms) in the water, I cleaned the tank 3 days back, so again I drained the water fully and filled up with new water and I left my FN inside.
What to do now. should I give him some medicine.
Please advice
<Jerome, the problem is that you aren't giving us any information. We are not mind readers! How big is the aquarium? What is the water chemistry? (In other words: what is the hardness and what is the pH?) What is the water temperature? What is the water quality like? (Nitrite? Ammonia? Nitrate?)
What do you feed the fish? Have you ever used live feeder fish? What sort of filter do you use? All this information is necessary to make a diagnosis. To start with, read here:
Anything that DOESN'T match what is listed there can be assumed a VERY LIKELY reason your Flowerhorn is sick. Most Flowerhorn cichlids get sick because [a] they are kept in tanks too small; [b] the filtration system is inadequate; [c] the water chemistry and temperature are wrong; and [d] the diet was wrong. The black worms are likely nothing to do with why the fish is sick. Most "worms" in fish tanks are planarians and nematodes that feed on organic matter. Usually, this means the tank is dirty. So they're a
symptom of poor aquarium maintenance rather than the cause of disease.
Cheers, Neale.>

White spots on Flowerhorn side fins -- 11/1/09
Hi crew
I have a Flowerhorn 3 inches long. He is in 20 gallon tank with powerfilter, sponge filter .
<A short term home, at best. This fish will grow rapidly, and needs a much bigger tank. You will certainly need at least 55 gallons, and realistically 75 gallons, within the next six months. If you don't provide a big enough tank, like all cichlids, he will be prone to infections (e.g., Hexamita).>
I do 25 percent water changes twice a week. Yesterday I fed him with live blood worms. I washed the bloodworms when I bring them but since yesterday after feeding him I saw some white spots on his side fins. He is eating the food properly. kindly suggest me some treatment to get rid of the white spots.
<Question: are these white spots that look like salt grains, or cloudy specks where the fin membrane has become discoloured? If the former, Whitespot/Ick is the issue, and this is most safely treated with a
combination of aquarium salt and heat. Add 2 to 3 teaspoons of salt per US gallon for at least 7 days with the temperature raised to 82-86 F. You can also use proprietary Ick medication, though these are somewhat toxic, so you need to watch your fish carefully while using them. If the white spots are discoloured patches on the fin membranes, then that's more likely incipient Finrot, a very common disease when fish are kept under poor conditions. Various commercial medications available, but all assume you're
going to improve environmental conditions as well. Do see here:
I have put aquarium salt in my tank today (Pl suggest me the quantity of salt to put for 20 gallon tank).
<Salt should not be added to the aquarium except for treating specific diseases. If you have Whitespot/Ick, then use the dose mentioned above.
Otherwise, don't use salt at all. Does little good, and may do some harm.>
Also suggest me some other remedy as it is worrying me a lot. I really luv my spotty very much.
<Best remedy? Reading. Find out what these fish need, and then act accordingly. Better to prevent problems than cure them.
Cheers, Neale.>
White spots on Flowerhorn side fins 11/3/09

Hi Neale,
<Hello again, Amit,>
Thanks for the prompt reply..
<Happy to help.>
I am following the treatment pattern as suggested by you. The fish is responding well.
<Good. I take it you decided this was Ick/Whitespot (which salt helps) as opposed to Finrot (which salt doesn't help).>
Meanwhile I wanted to ask you should I step down his diet for the next 7 days and am I advised to make 25 percent water change everyday while adding salt.
<I wouldn't "step down" feeding, but I *would* check you aren't overfeeding, and that the food you're offering is nutritious. For many cichlids, regular offerings of green foods are beneficial, and cooked or
tinned peas are ideal. So try offering some of these. There's also a good argument for not feeding on one day each week (rather good for humans too, but most of us don't have the will power!). It is too easy to overfeed fish. Because they do not have efficient digestive systems, most of the excess food goes straight out of their bodies. So by cutting back the food, you won't slow down their growth. Simply offer a sensible amount of food. One or two meals per day, and not so much anything is left after one minute. The fish should not look fat; it should simply have a slightly rounded (convex) belly, but mustn't look swollen or as if it has eaten too much.>
Awaiting ur reply eagerly
Thanks in advance
<Cheers, Neale.>

Pls tell me the treatment for my Flowerhorn 10/14/09
Hi, Crew I am in a great problem with my Flowerhorn
It is not taking any food the color become faded and it is sitting at the basement of aquarium for 2days
<Probably means an ENVIRONMENTAL problem. Review water chemistry, and water quality, and water temperature. Just to be clear, you need 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, nitrate less than 20 mg/l, a pH around 7.5 to 8, and a hardness level of 10 degrees dH upwards. The water temperature should be around 25 C/77 F.>
at first I thought that it might be a problem of water I have changed about 80% of water yesterday but no improvement have seen the color become more fade and it looks like a dead fish
<Perhaps it is dead?>
today I give POTASIAM PERMANGANET(KMNO4) which I use for treatment of my Discuses.
<Yikes! Very dangerous this stuff. Do not use.>
Can it works?
<Probably not.>
Now what can I do I cant understand I don't want to lose my butiful Flowerhorn Pls help me Crew as soon as possible
<There is no information here. I must have data! Tell me:
[a] Size of the aquarium;
[b] Type of filter used, and preferably, it's turnover rate (that's gallons per hour, or litres per hour, as stated on the pump);
[c] Water chemistry, at minimum the pH, and preferably the general hardness and/or carbonate hardness;
[d] Water quality, at minimum the nitrite level, but the ammonia and/or nitrate levels are useful too.
Without this information, we cannot say anything useful. In most cases, cichlids go off their food because people keep them in tanks that are too small, don't provide adequate filtration, don't do enough water changes, or don't provide them with a suitably balanced diet. Other causes of "mystery sickness" are things like using feeder fish (NEVER use these) and exposure to paint fumes, insecticides and other poisons. Cheers, Neale.>

FH... hlth... Fed "feeder fish"... 9/10/09
dear sir.
I am iqbal from India I have a FH of short body of 8 month from 3 days he is not having any food period it was on feeding fish that is gold fish and red cap and humpy head but today morning my FH is not able to swimming any is lying down in tank so pls help me regards
<Hello Iqbal. I need information here. How big is the aquarium? What sort of filter do you use? What is the water chemistry? At minimum, tell me the pH. What is the water quality like? At minimum, I need the nitrite level. Usually, when Flowerhorn cichlids stop eating, it's because they are stressed by their environment. A Flowerhorn cichlid needs a tank 55 gallons (about 210 litres) in size, and the tank needs a big filter, ideally rated at a turnover 6 times the volume of the tank or more, i.e., at least 6 x 55 = 330 gallons per hour for a 55 gallon tank. The pH should be 7 to 8, the hardness 10 degrees dH or more, and temperature about 25 degrees C. There should be 0 ammonia and 0 nitrite. Nitrate level should be low, certainly less than 50 mg/l and preferably less than 20 mg/l. So check all these things. Secondly, DO NOT USE FEEDER FISH! Any fish cheap enough to use as food will not have been cared for properly. Feeder fish are "parasite time bombs" and the most stupid thing any aquarist can do is use them to feed a valuable fish. Furthermore, Goldfish (and other cyprinids, including minnows) contain lots of fat and a substance called thiaminase. Thiaminase breaks down Vitamin B1, and over the long term makes fish very very sick.
Fat also causes problems, and the use of fatty foods is a major cause of mortality among carnivorous fish. Your Flowerhorn is a hybrid bred from cichlids that ate invertebrates, organic detritus, and plant material.
Offer it a varied diet of things like chopped seafood, insect larvae, cooked peas, algae, and so on. Don't feed it if it is not hungry! Healthy cichlids are ALWAYS hungry, so if a cichlid isn't eating, it means something is WRONG. So go back and check your aquarium. Cheers, Neale.>

PLS HELP - Something wrong with my Flowerhorn - Unable to diagnose. Env. -- 09/08/09
<Hi there>
Something definitely wrong with my Flowerhorn... I will try to be as descriptive as possible..I have not given any pictures in this post.. because picture in this case will not tell you anything...
Tank - 48 X 18 X 18
<In inches I'll take it, not cm.>
Filter - Canister 1200 L/H
Air Curtain for aeration...
Small pebbles in the ground, not as a substrate but more of him to play with...
<At times gravel is useful to necessary to foster biological filtration>
A bog wood - on which the air curtain is tied around
Sunday (August 30th 2009) - Performed a major cleaning of his tank. Cleaned glass, he had quite few number of pebbles as gravel to play with, had to remove some of them, because they were very dirty.. Cleaned the canister medium only partially... changed water over 50%...
<Mmm, I would usually keep such changes to 25-20% maximum>
Wednesday (2nd September) - Got hold of a brand new packet of Ching Mix Sp100 (from US) - Started feeding him in small quantities morning and evening..
Thursday (3rd September) - Noticed an unusual thing in the evening.. FH has passed poo usual in color, but the poo was floating on top of the surface instead of settling down..
<Can be just the food>
Friday (4th September ) -
Morning - Changed water 20%.. added salt..
<... why? What sort of salt/s? Unless added to raise dKH or such, not necessary or advised with Neotropical Cichlids>
usual appetite for him and usual aggression.. he had his feeding (Ching Mix)
Evening - Went home to see him lying on corner of the tank.. color darkened.. The whole tank is spread with this Poo.. very unusual for a FH poo.. not continuous, but small granule like structure, black in color spread all across the tank floor...
Performed water change once again, cleaned the mess and added salt.... felt that he also had trouble in swimming... (is that a swim bladder??)
<...? No>
Saturday (5th Sep) -
Morning - Color improved... no signs of stress, but most of the time resting down...when swimming, swimming is normal.. tried showing him his food packet.. he became excited for feeding.. did not fed him though - Diagnosis, may be minor constipation... Stomach slightly bloated..Thought I should be stopping Ching Mix...
<I would>
Evening - Situation remained same.. Throughout this day, he did not passed any poo...
On account of heavy rainfall where I live...temperature of the tank was showing 27.4 degrees, Changed water 20%, added heater, salt, had set the temp to 30 degrees.. Did not fed him for the whole day...
Sunday (6th Sep) -
Morning - Still no sign of improvement.. most of the time resting below, he comes up only when someone approaches his tank.. But he had appetite...No food... Water change 20%, added salt
<Don't add salt>
Evening - Situation remained same...resting down.. not passing any poo... Tried him 1 pellet soaked in water.. I had to find out what was wrong... he ate that single pellet literally gulped it (Hikari cichlid staple)... Moment after consuming the pellet, vertical black stripes appeared out of no where and he went down to rest in the corner...
Monday (7th Sep) -
Morning - found him resting below, color darkened.. Started Metronidazole treatment... Metrogyl 400 mg dissolve in luke warm water, pellets soaked in that solution for 15 min.s.. fed him.. usual appetite, usual aggression while feeding... once completed, body turned black.. went down to rest...
Evening - Went home, found him resting on a corner.. he has passed Poo - this time normal in structure but dark yellow in color? When someone approaches, he swims fine... otherwise whole day resting in a corner - Stomach bloating disappeared...
Water change 20%, added Salt
Tuesday (8th Sep - Today) -
Morning, same situation resting, dark stripes in the body... fed him few pellets with Metrogyl soaked... He has passed Poo, small in quantity but dark yellow in color
Help me guys what is going wrong??
<Salt... water quality likely, some toxicity...>
1. Looking at his swimming pattern - he does not have a swim bladder...
<... Cichlids do have such>
Sometimes he jumps to catch the pellet..
2. Internal Infection - He is not passing any white poo
3. Stomach is not bloated...
4. Immediately after food, the dark stripes come in, remains for some time and then disappear..
Does he have a internal blockage???
One point wanted to mention here -- The bottom edges of his tank is covered with some kind of a yellow/white film which I thought was water mark on silicon gel..The fellow who prepared this tank had actually emptied 1 full silicon gun on my repeated warnings of leak...
<... When was this done? What sort of Silicon/Silastic was used? Some has mildewcide in it... for window use... is toxic. Could be at fault here>
This yellow/white kind of things keeps coming out from those edges, specially when I change water or when there is a turbulence... some part gets sucked by the canister, some again settles in the bottom...
Since yesterday I am also observing the same kind of this thing is hanging from this dorsal fin.. ?? Is he also having an fungal infection?? This is a new symptom came out of no where
Some ideas friends --- I am fearing, that I should not be late in corrections.. he still has appetite for food... if he looses that, then the damage would be done already...
<Do get hold of the Silicon cartridge, read what the intended use is. Bob Fenner>

Re: PLSS HELP - Something wrong with my Flowerhorn - Unable to diagnose Lernaea? 9/10/09
Hi Bob,
First of all thanks for stepping in to help me out
Update on the situation...
Yesterday I had first roller coaster ride in my 10 yrs of hobby..
The diagnosis was wrong..
I observed him sulking in a corner in a slanting position.. I observed him lethargic, I observed him turning dark in color.. so the first idea which anyone gets is an internal stomach problem...
But the confusion was
1. He had the usual appetite
2. His stomach was not bloated
3. He was passing poo normal in color
Tuesday (8th September 2009)
Evening - I observed whenever he sulks, he sulks in the same position in whichever corner of the tank he chooses... He sits in a posture where both his pelvic fins are covered in the ground, I also observed that he has a very mild movement pattern sitting in the same position, as if swinging like a pendulum...
I observed he had two red scars in his pelvic fin and a pure white thread like structure 1 inch in length hanging from both the scars - Worst part is that thread has a sac like structure or a ball at the end....
Wednesday (9th September 2009)
Morning - Saw the thread like structure has disintegrated from one of the scars, one still has a remnant, very small in size..
Three new white pimple like structure arrived on his tail.. they were new... looks like some kind of a white pimple...
Afternoon - My all doubts were Anchor worm, ...
<Ahh! A too-common parasite for pond-raised fishes, or kept with, fed fishes from...>
I had seen this before with one of my friend's goldies, So I knew how does an Anchor worm look like so, at the same time was not aware of what is the commercially available medicine, whether will get it in shorter time.. from anywhere..
He was always sitting in bottom, in a posture, which used to cover both of his scars.. and he used to move some time to and fro as if rubbing those scars...
Decided to go for KMNO4 (PP) treatment..
<Mmm, not for Lernaea... Better the organophosphate route... DTHP or Dimilin... Please read here re: http://wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/anchorwrmfaqs.htm
and the linked files above. You will need to extract/remove the adults on the fish itself with tweezers>
Had a 23 litres tank - dosage of 10mg/litre of PP, prepared a PP concentrated solution (25 mg in 500 ml of distilled water) and had put 5 ml of that in the 23 litres tank resulting in 230 mg of PP...
<Potassium permanganate is too strong an oxidizer for "casual use"... too easy to serious burn fishes>
Transferred the FH into that tank, and allowed him to be there for 20 minutes with heavy aeration...
By god's grace he took the treatment well.. he was swimming.. all through the treatment... there was heavy bubbling inside the tank.. the clean water of PP was filled up with very small disintegrated particles....
After 20 minutes took him out to a freshwater tub...
Cleaned his hospital tank thoroughly, filled - refilled twice,, and had put him back again....in his small hospital bed
Then came the easy but the most tedious part.. had to again disinfect his 300 litres tank with KMNO4... this time did not measured the KMNO4 amount.. just poured it liberally in the tank with all decors inside... allowed the tank to sit for 30 minutes.. with PP solution...
<Yikes... stains most all. I would have used hypochlorite/chlorine bleach... Per the protocol detailed on WWM>
Then cleaned all his decor, refilled and cleaned 300 lites twice, till I was sure not a trace of KMNO4 was visible... poured it up with water, dechlorinator, salt started heavy aeration for 4 hours.. then transferred him back to his main home..
Immly he became white, all colors gone.. fed him two pellets, switched off the lights,
Thursday (10 th September) - today morning
Colors got back to normal...he ate pellets, active than before but still relatively lethargic..
<But... did you remove the adult Anchorworms/Crustaceans from the fish?>
Out of 5 pimples, 2 have vanished, 1 still exists, remaining 2 has very slight traces.. I am just hoping, that those are dead by now and would vanish in 2 - 3 days time..
I will be keeping a close watch on him...
Now the million dollar question I have, is how did this thing entered in my tank..
On last Sunday (30th Sep) - I did a major cleaning of both of my 4 feet tanks.. Till now I do not see anything to my Malawi Setup.. but the FH got affected..
I had kept him in a very good condition - I know difficult to believe, but people who have seen him as regarded my tank as one of most clean ones..
but still ...
I just hope that I am done.. and these remaining small spores would go away with Salt and temperature and I do not have to treat him with PP once again...
Had to do this, because these damn freaks were sucking all that I was feeding him...
Just hope he pulls through...
<Me too>
<Thank you for sharing your experiences... observations and reactions. Bob Fenner>

Sick Flowerhorn Please help..!! 8/13/2009
Hi there. I am in big need of some 911 fish help.!! First off here are my water conditions 82 degrees f. Ph is 7.8 Ammonia is .25 and nitrite is .2
<Ammonia and nitrite MUST be ZERO. If your fish is sick, this is why. End of story.>
It is a 100 gallon tank. Ok now my Flowerhorn fish. I got him about 2 weeks ago. He's 3.5 inches long. He was added to a new aquarium that was running for only one week before he was put in. He lives with 6 fish
separated by 2 dividers (3 sections) .
<Overstocked aquarium, perhaps? Inadequately filtered?><<Not cycled... RMF>>
He shares the section with 3 tiny non aggressive Flowerhorns.
<Non-aggressive because they're juveniles. The dominant one WILL attack the others, and potentially kill them, once they're big enough to be viewed as rivals.>
He wont eat any food for about 3 days.
<Because your water quality is terrible.>
Then maybe one pellet or two but he'll usually spit them out. Same with frozen blood worms. His poop looks fuzzy like its covered with mold.
<Fuzzy when it comes out of the fish? Or fuzzy because it sits on the substrate for a while? With two dividers in the tank, I'd be surprised if you have good water circulation at all. Put a bit of flake at the bottom of the compartment furthest away from the filter inlet. If it just floats about, then you have bad water circulation. What should happen is that flake quickly gets carried by the current into the filter.>
It doesn't look stringy like your average hex poop. This behavior continued for about another week .He's not very energetic and keeps to himself or hidden under a rock. So then I threw a couple feeders in there after about a week of not eating.
<Why are you using feeder fish? These are parasite bombs.>
I know there bad but I needed to see some aggressiveness or eating or something to show me he wants to live.
<"Wants to live"??? Look, it's sick because your water quality sucks. Fix that, and he'll be back to normal.>
He killed a feeder then spit it out and went back to his usual ways.
His nuchal hump grew more that day with the feeders in. Also a little bit of energy that day. While chasing a feeder his anus came out about 1/4 of an inch and went back in about 5 minutes later. This happened about 4 or 5 times that day. Now, 2 weeks later, he looks at his worst. Please help if you have any ideas. Thanks so much Adam.
<Stop with the feeders. Read more, try harder. These fish all sound doomed,
to be honest. A single Flowerhorn needs a 55 gallon tank with a filter rated at 6-8 times the volume of the aquarium in turnover per hour (i.e., 330 - 440 gallons/hour). There's no point keeping them way you're doing, because eventually most will die, and you'll be stuck with one, likely sickly, bloated specimen. How about reading what they need, identifying a correct diet, creating a tank appropriate to their needs, and providing adequate water chemistry and water quality. All this information is here.
Cheers, Neale.>

Flowerhorn feeding 08/02/09
,hi! just a couple of questions.,,first have a juvenile FH., just purchased last month.,when feeding, he seems not interested even though im feeding it twice a day.,
<What are you feeding it? Most fish will get bored with one single food, day after day. Moreover, you need to offer good quality food. Hikari Cichlid Gold is probably the best pellet food, but this should still be augmented with other foods. Earthworms, frozen bloodworms, cooked peas, chopped seafood all make good foods for large cichlids.>
and when he starts to eat (after an hour or if there's no one near the tank), he's splitting it out.,is it ok?.,
<Depends how much he eats. Is your fish healthy? Is its body gently rounded? If it eats enough to be healthy, but spits out the rest, then give less food.>
second, he looks afraid if someone's near the tank, the FH stays on the corner.,
<How big is this tank? Flowerhorn cichlids are typical large Central American cichlids. In small tanks they will be nervous. They need plenty of space, a cave, and preferably some floating plants. For a Flowerhorn, the tank should be at least 210 litres/55 gallons, and there must be a cave (like a flowerpot, for example) big enough for the fish to hide in and feel secure. Add some floating plants, real or plastic, as you prefer. Fish swim in the open when they feel secure. There must also be good environmental conditions. Hard, alkaline water is important, aim for pH 7.5-8, 10+ degrees dH; and there must be 0 ammonia and 0 nitrite. In poor environmental conditions, fish become nervous.>
but looks ok if no one's around.,lastly.,when will it starts to show colors? I've ask the sales attendant and she
<Flowerhorns are hybrids, not a true species, and you cannot really guarantee anything about them. They were very popular for a while, and in Asia especially, still are. Farms produce them to a price, not a quality.
So you get what you pay for. If you pay a good price from a reputable breeder you can trust, you have a good chance of getting a colourful specimen. If you buy a cheap fish from a pet store -- well, maybe you get a good fish, but maybe not. A varied diet that contains both crustaceans and plant material will enhance whatever colouration your fish has. Good water quality will ensure the fish shows its best colours. A dark aquarium with plenty of shade and floating plants will encourage your fish to show its richest colours. If you feed an inadequate diet, keep the fish in a brightly lit tank, give it no shade, and make no effort to ensure optimal water conditions, your fish will never show good colours -- even if it has good genes! Cheers, Neale.>

feeding... same... 08/02/09
just a couple of questions,,
first, I've purchased a juvenile FH last month.
I noticed that every time I fed him, he seems not interested in food even though im feeding him twice a day, and when he starts to eat (after an hour or if theirs no one near the tank) he split it out.,is it normal?.,.,second,, he looks afraid and stays on the corner if some one's near the tank.,,I thought FH likes to stay in an open area.,lastly.,when will it normally starts to show colors?,,I noticed some redness around its
fin..and the markings are shining like greenish pearl when the light strikes on it.,,,hope for a quick response.,.,thanks in advance..
<Second question about Flowerhorns that won't eat in two days! In brief, Flowerhorn cichlids need a big tank to feel settled; aim for 210 litres/55 gallons. Water should be clean: 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, and nitrate less than 20 mg/l. Like all Central American cichlids, the water should be hard (10+ degrees dH) and basic (pH 7.5-8). Water temperature should be middling, around 25 C/77 F. Like all cichlids, if conditions aren't good, they'll become shy, nervous, and show subdued colours. Next, their diet should be varied. There's no point offering the same pellets day after day. They will get bored! Provided a mixed diet alongside good quality pellets (such as Hikari Cichlid Gold). Krill, cooked peas, bloodworms, chopped seafood will
all be readily accepted. Mixing crustacean and plant foods in their diet is important for optimal colours. Finally, if you see redness on the fins, this is often Finrot, and that's caused by poor water quality. Check the
ammonia and nitrite; both should be zero. Correct the environmental conditions, and treat with a suitable anti-Finrot medication. Cheers, Neale.>
<Ah, you're welcome, I think! Neale.>

Brain damaged Flowerhorn? Fried, electrified... 6/23/09
I have an aprox 3 year old male ZZ Flowerhorn. Free to good home from craigslist. He had been in a tank with an electric eel
and had been "hit " at least twice. I have been feeding him raw prawn stuffed with Grand Sumo Flowerhorn pellets. He is in a 55g bare bottom canister filter with 50% changes once a week with vacuuming and replacement of 5 gallons daily. There has been an improvement in his color.
He swims strange (when looking for food) and cannot target food at all. He swims in its area and goes sideways inhaling water and if he is lucky the food also. It has been suggested his nervous system is damaged from the eel.
He has been this way for 3 weeks before I got him (I have had him a few days)
No one has been able to tell me how to help retrain him to eat.
<Likely too hard wired "fried" to be able...>
or if pellets will ever be an option as he cant seem to get them to "suck" into his mouth.
<Not really a/the issue here>
What course of action would you recommend to ensure the rest of his life is a good one?
<Too late... you placed this animal inappropriately... the quality possible for its life is shot. Bob Fenner>
Thanks so much,
Re: Brain damaged Flowerhorn? - 6/23/09

I am his second home, what I described was his condition when I GOT him free from craigslist. I was not the person who placed him with the electric eel.
I am trying to give him a good life. He is now in a 55 bare bottom with what I described. Is there a way to rehabilitate a previously electrocuted fish that you know of?
<No dear... there is not as far as I'm aware>
I am sorry I was not more clear in my description.
He is taking prawn and pellets that sink.
<Ahh! I would use other such foods that you can get down to this fish>
Thanks so much
<Welcome Lisa. BobF>

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