Please visit our Sponsors
FAQs on the Rummynose Tetras

Related Articles: Cardinal Tetras; A School of Beauty, Part II,  by Alesia Benedict, Characid Fishes

Related FAQs:  Cardinal Tetras, Characid/Tetra Fishes,

White circle around Rummynose eye      3/31/20
Dear WWM,
Thank you for the excellent guidance you provide, it helps us to enhance our understanding of the wet pets.
<Thanks for these kind words!>
The attached picture is of one of my 7 Rummynose tetras who would be about 2.5 years old in the tank. It has developed this white circle around the left eye but Its behavior is otherwise normal. Swimming, interested in food and energetic. I think another one of the group is also showing a trace of
something similar in 1 eye.
<Looks like 'Pop-eye', or Exophthalmia.>
Some details of the tank: It is a 29 gallon heavily planted non CO2 tank in its 9th year. Mostly slow growing plants, LED lighting on 8.5 hr. timer.
Fish include various small tetras, Corydoras cats, Bristle nose and whiptail plecs, cherry barbs, Kuhli loaches which seldom show up, and a pair of Bolivian Rams. Filtered by three 500 l/hr. HOB filters with ceramic media, sponge, SeaChem de nitrate. pH 7.5 (stable), TDS 225 ppm in meter, NO3 about 30. Small dosing of DIY macros every other day and weekly with Flourish Comprehensive and Iron alternatively. Indian summer is pushing the temp up to 28.5 C and then the chiller brings in down to 26.5. This happens at least 4 times a day, so might be a source of temperature fluctuation related stress. Bi weekly water change of 50 percent. No live food, Hikari, Ocean Nutrition, Tetra and NLS flakes and pellets
Can you please tell me what might be wrong? And do I need to intervene?
<If the pop-eye is a single eye, the chances are you're dealing with physical injury. The use of Epsom salt (1-3 teaspoons per 5 gallons/20 litres) is useful for reducing the swelling. This will raise the general
hardness a bit, but across a few weeks won't do any harm. Beyond that, there's nothing much to be done, and with luck the swelling will go down.
If both eyes are popping, that's more serious, and tends to imply environmental stress or a bacterial infection.>
Please stay safe and healthy.
<And likewise to you and yours.>
Thanks and regards
<Hope this helps, Neale.>

Re: White circle around Rummynose eye       4/1/20
Dear Neale,
Thanks for the details. I am afraid that the affected fish did not survive.
I did not see it in the morning, so must have been consumed by the other inhabitants.
<Oh dear. Let's hope nothing contagious was passed between them.>
I am doing a major water change and cleaning filters. Other fish and inverts seem normal for now.
<Well, good luck with remaining livestock. Take care, Neale.>

Re: White circle around Rummynose eye <<RMF LOOK for update>>       4/3/20
Dear Neale,
Thank you.
I saw on the WWM website that our mail exchange has been published but the second message and its response is missing. May be it will be updated later.
<I believe this is what Bob F does, as the days, weeks pass.>
I wonder if that discontinuity might misguide someone later who could associate the picture/symptom with PopEye only and miss out on your updated prognosis of a possible bacterial infection, likely columnaris.
<Understood. It may well be that Bob will collate both/all massages, making it clear where we went with this.>
Please consider not publishing this message.
<Noted; Bob?>
<<I am only finding the posting from 3/31 and 4/1... is there another? RMF>>
Thanks and records
<Cheers, Neale.>

Re: White circle around Rummynose eye      4/6/20
Dear WWM,
I am so sorry to have confused you. Please find attached the complete correspondence.
When I requested 'please consider not publishing *this* mail', I meant the same mail itself as that had nothing about the fish health question, but on missing portions of our correspondence on your website. So I felt it might not be necessary to be archived. I will request the same for the current mail as well.
Stay safe, stay well. This too shall pass.
Thanks and regards
<IS all posted as far as Neale and I are aware. Please find here:
Bob Fenner>

Community tank question... Actually Rummynose tetra hlth.      8/5/14
<... why have you sent 23 megs of files?>
My name is Aleah and im now 11 months old in the aquarium hobby. I've just
redesigned my glass tank (120cm W x 40cm D x 50cm H). The fish have been in the tank for a month now. (Please note the fish weren't just bought but slowly added throughout the course of 6 months to avoid tipping the cycle)
Its a planted tank with a 3d background and a diy filter system behind it.
There are two filters running, one 500lph with its output directly into
 the front via spray bar, the other is 700lph that's double filtering and circulating the water behind the background. There are mesh cut outs to
allow water the pass through (see attached). Most of the space between the
2 filters is filled with bio-balls.
Its a cycled community tank of 15 green neons, 11 Rummynose, 9
Glowlights, 5 small Bristlenose and 1 surviving kuhli loach (dw ill be getting more, they didn't survive the stress of the temporary tank and
getting transferred twice in a week)

Ph 6.5. KH 4. GH 7. Nitrate 10. The rest are all 0. Temp at 27 Celsius
I mix in with the weekly 25% water change:
- prime
- fish trace elements
- leaf zone
4 120cm led lights. 1 white, 1 white n green, 1 blue and 1 red. On for 10
hrs a day on a timer. The blue stays on always (moonlight).
My problem is that I've had a Rummynose suddenly torpedo down to the floor
and struggle to move. My thinking is swim bladder
<... there is no such thing as a specific disease here>

so I've built a "hospital"
bay box made of plastic mesh that's hanging on the side of the tank internally. I've placed floating plant in there for shade and an air stone underneath for circulation.
It has now been 4 days and no progress. He is alive but it looks like he
cant move his tail at all, just his fins. He still has bright colours. Is there anything further I can do?
<Can't say with the data provided>
Should I put his out of his misery?
<I wouldn't; there's chance of spontaneous recovery>
Also, how can I avoid this happening to the rest of the family?
<Only time can/will tell... I suspect the one fish was mechanically injured... IF there was something pathogenic or environmentally
at root/cause here, all would be similarly mal-affected. Bob Fenner>

Re Stocking additional fish to an existing tank 1/6/13
Also, I forgot to ask, I want to add a few more Rummynose Tetras to the tank but I'm afraid I will contract Ich to my tank or that they new rummies will be picked on because they are smaller. What do you think? Is it a safe if I keep an eye on the stock at my LFS to make sure they are healthy?
<Best to use a quarantine tank. Keep the new livestock in the Q-tank for 4 weeks and if they remain healthy after that period or you nurse them to health, add to the display tank. - Rick>

Red Nosed small fishes playing with my Neon Tetras    2/9/12
Dear Mr. Bob Fenner,
Again, warm greetings from Jakarta, Indonesia
I am happy to know that you have visited our country. Next time you plan to visit Jakarta, please let me know, I will buy you lunch!
<I may be sojourning there/Java for this years International Hash House Harriers runs after all>
I have followed the links as you instructed and received good information, as always, from your pages. Many thanks for your generosity.
Attached here is a picture, depicting a closer look at my tank, and you can see there is a couple of Neon Tetras, but the fish which are playing with them at the picture, I don't know their species. The guy who sold me all these lovely fishes didn't tell me their Latin names, just local descriptive names ("this is a red nosed fish ro accompany your Tetras"). I am sure you can help me identify these fishes? I got six of them and would love to know more about proper care and feeding of these small wonders.
<Is a species of "Rummynose Tetra"... Hemigrammus sp.>
Those red-nosed fishes are less hardy than the Tetras though, already I have two casualties (*sad face* :(  ), I have no clue about the causes of their death. Maybe they're simply too frail?
<Perhaps. Need consistent, softer/warmer water, w/ little to no nitrogenous metabolite content>
Thank you for your kind attention and assistance!
Ben Haryo
<Welcome. BobF>

White patches spreading on fish  6/21/10
I am having a problem with my rummy nose tetras getting whitish patches.
<I can see.>
This tank is cycled, 10 gal,
<Much too small for this species; Rummynose tetras are fairly demanding fish, and suffer in small tanks -- anything less than 30 gallons, to be honest -- and cannot abide immature aquarium conditions.>
I check the ammonia every week and after 3 weeks I had .50 so it has had a recent water change.
<If the aquarium has had non-zero ammonia levels for three weeks, that's very likely the cause of the problem here. Is the tank actually a mature one? In other words, one more than 3 months old? Or is it a new aquarium?>
The pale patch on the fish was noticed soon after I bought the school of four tetras about 4 weeks ago,
<Again, these tetras aren't forgiving of mistakes. Keeping fewer than 6 tetras is always a bad idea, and with Rummynose tetras your scope for mistakes is minimal. Social stress could easily make worse any other problems.>
I did some treatment with Maroxy and Melafix assuming it was fungus and it did nothing-didn't grow didn't shrink- so I quit treatment after a week and decided it just had odd coloring.
<Is not odd colouring; this is some type of bacterial infection, Finrot-type thing. Needs to be treated with a suitable antibiotic PLUS appropriate "fixes" to these tetras' environment.>
Now the whitish patch is growing and one other tetra is showing a small spot of it on its head. The fish still all have nice red faces- they get pale if they are stressed or sickly or so I am told.
<They can do, but pale heads aren't the only signs of sickness, anymore than sneezes are the only signs that humans aren't well.>
I have researched on line the only thing that seems to match is columnaris but the fish is still active and not acting sick. My experience with columnaris is that it is fast and deadly-had two new betas die overnight from it in March and never bought fish from Petco again- so I don't think it is columnaris;
<Could be Columnaris, but you can't really be sure without microscope work.
Certainly bacterial, so either way, treat with something that treats Finrot and Columnaris.>
what do you think it is?
<Stress-induced opportunistic bacterial infection. You've kept these fish badly, and now they're dying. Fixing the environment -- better water quality, larger tank, more specimens -- will save them, alongside appropriate medication.>
Thanks for any help.
<No problem.>
<Cheers, Neale.>


Rummy Nose Tetra with worm?  12/20/2005 I could sure use some help!  I have a rummy nose tetra that has a worm in his front right fin and I have treated him with Fluke Tabs and Aquari Sol (my tank had Ick) and the worm is still in the fin (must be internal).
<Might be> I have taken the fish out and put him in a hospital tank and  under a microscope to make sure the worm is in the fin and sure enough it is!  I have taken him to a fish store and chatted with a woman that has worked a lot of science when it comes to sick fish but even she was unsure what to do She told me she would look further for more information but could find nothing.  The fish is breathing heavy and flapping his fins.  I am very good with a scalpel and was thinking on cutting part of the fin off to remove the worm (clove oil to anesthetize??) <Mmm, possibly, but hard to do on such a small specimen...> and then treat with an antibiotic.  Under the scope I also found a very very light dusting of black dots that can only be seen under a scope.  I am thinking on doing the removal of the fin as a last resort.  I would appreciate any information you could give me as time is running out. Sincerely, I. Garrett <I would use an anthelminthic here. Please use this term in the Google search tool on WWM... Bob Fenner>

Keeping Discus and Tetras In Tap Water  11/7/05 Hi! I have a 44 gal tank project. I am planning to place a mated pair of discus with a dozen of Hemigrammus bleheri (red nose) and a few Cory cats. It's not for breeding, just display. There will be automated water changes replacing 25% of the water twice a week. Now I don't want to play with water parameters in this tank and I know people that keep discus successfully in local tap water (hardness 10, ph 7.5). My question is: Can I keep successfully Hemigrammus bleheri (red nose tetra) with those parameters (?): -TEMPERATURE 82-83F (28C) -Ph 7.5 -Hardness 10 Thanks! Dominique < If the discus are tank raised/bred then they will do better than wild discus. Rummy nose tetras are being bred in Asia and these too have been found to better at handling harder water than their wild counterparts. With bi-weekly water changes they should do OK.-Chuck>  <<When working the aquatic trade I always found these to be among the hardiest of freshwater tetras, as well as being quite forgiving with pH parameters (as long as there are no large shifts in pH).  They also always made for a great display.  Marina>>

New Planted Tank and Fish Death 10/11/05 Hello, The crew has given me solid advice in the past, and I want to share a recent experience with you all. I help my parents set up a 75 gal planted community aquarium. We went fairly low tech: no CO2 injection, low light, 2 Penguin Bio Wheel 350 power filters. All the planting was done immediately. We then cycled the new setup using established aquarium water and sponge squeezings from a mature filter. We were able to observe the complete nitrogen cycle.  After our nitrite readings were zero, we added fish. The complete cycle took a little over 3 weeks. The initial stocking consisted of 40 Neons, 24 Rummy Nose, 5 Siamese algae eaters, and 5 Amano shrimp. All the Neons died over a 5-7 day period, a few every night. All but 3 of the Rummy Nosed died in the same period. 3 of the Siamese died also during this period. None of the shrimp perished.  During the week of death, we continued monitoring all water parameters. There was never any change in ammonia, nitrite, pH, or nitrate. I am wondering if we stocked the tank too fast. If that was the case wouldn't there have been an ammonia/nitrite spike? Is there more to an established aquarium than just the nitrogen cycle? Are there other organisms that add to the bio-balance of a mature aquarium making it more suitable to life? Once a tank is cycled, is it mature? Or does that take months? I am trying to figure out if we received some bum fish, or the tank wasn't ready for the new fish. Any thoughts? <I'm sorry you and your fish had such a rough week. I have a few thoughts/questions. What did you use for your ammonia source when cycling your tank? Fish food? Ammonia from the grocery store? Since you had cycled your tank, I assume your ammonia or nitrites were down to zero. What was your pH? Nitrate level?  Tetras are known to be touchy when you put them into tanks. Did you test the fish store water's pH? Maybe they experienced a dramatic change in pH. I'd consider a mature tank one that's been up for about a year or so. It does have its own collection of microfauna. Levels of trace elements have evened out.  I think you probably stocked the tank a bit too fast -- the fish may have died before they were able to create an ammonia spike. Since your shrimp didn't die, you might have had some fish disease that wiped out most of the tank. Shrimp are very sensitive to ammonia, indicating that your test kits are speaking truth. You could have just had some bum fish, but your death levels are really high.  I'd suggest adding about 10 tetras at a time for a little while. What is going to be the final composition of the tank? You could start with your hardiest fish. You might want to consider a quarantine tank -- introducing a disease into a 75 gallon would be a nightmare to clean up.> Thanks, CW  <Anytime, Catherine W> 

Rummy Nosed Tetra Hi Crew - you've always been so helpful in the past - hoping you can do it again. I have a small school of Rummy Noses (7). I've just noticed that one of them looks like he/she has white masses under the skin of the abdomen. The others are all silver in the body - even transparent looking. This one looks like there's something white and opaque in the body. Could it be Neon Tetra Disease? Doesn't look lumpy or bloated.  <Not likely NTD... perhaps another ailment> I'm going to move it to another tank that has some Cory Cats, Flying Foxes, Platies and Guppy. If it's Neon Tetra Disease, will it infect these other fish? Thanks so much! <NTD can be very "spreading", but I strongly doubt that this problem is at play here. I agree with your speedy isolation of the one individual. Let us hope the "white masses" are passing. Bob Fenner> 

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