Please visit our Sponsors
FAQs on Exophthalmia/Pop-Eye, Case Histories

Related Articles: Exophthalmia/Pop-eye, Environmental Disease,

Related FAQs: Pop-Eye 1, Pop-Eye 2, & FAQs on Popeye: Causes/Etiology: Traumas/Mechanical Injuries, Parasitic Involvements Suspected & Real, Infectious Disease, Cures, & Environmental Disease, Aggressive Behavior, Sources of Bubbles,

Popeye on clown        9/29/16
Good morning! My clown injured her eye as she and her mate were doing the bump and rub.
<Good desc.>
I read on your site about doing a water change(done) and adding Epsom salts and wanted to verify the dosage of 1 tablespoon per 10 gallons.
<Yes; about right and safe...>
I have mushrooms and palm tree corals along with button polyps.
<Should work out for these as well. I will make the obligatory cautionary statement here re allelopathy and the need for regular maintenance to avoid triggering a cascade event>

The other fish are a yellow tang and 2 pajama cardinals. I will have to treat the whole tank (as trying to dislodge mama clown is like trying to reinvent the wheel) and wanted to make sure that the Epsom salts are safe for everyone. Thank you for your time,
Kellie Kyser
So Mote It Be
<Indeed. Bob Fenner>

Re: Popeye on clown        9/30/16
Mr. Fenner, thank you replying so quickly. In your honest opinion, should I just let her heal naturally. She shows no sign of any distress and her eye is clear. I have attached 2 photos. Truthfully, although I read about adding Epsom salts to the tank, I did not see any explanation as to why it would be beneficial other than speeding up the healing process.
<Mmm; as with human use... MgSO4 is a "muscle relaxant" and vasodilator... my thinking (okay, guessing) is that it allows more blood flow... aiding
repair in the highly vascularized areas esp., like fish eyes>
I prefer not to use chemicals and in the 6 years of this tank running, have only used a chemical, PraziPro, once and that was due to what was thought to be a parasite but turned out to be a streamer of algae on tangs barb. I highly valve <and value I hope!> your opinion on this and only want to do the best for my tanks' inhabitants.
<Mmm; seeing these pix; and if this fish, system were mine, I would hold off on actual treatment, salt use. As you've stated, with general good care, nutrition... this fish should heal of its own accord. BobF>
Thank you again,
Kellie Kyser
So Mote It Be
<Still moting?>

Re: Popeye on clown        9/30/16
Thank you sir and, as always, much appreciation for your knowledge and time. Have a wonderful day ��
Kellie Kyser
<And you Kel. B>
So Mote It Be

Re: Popeye on clown         10/7/16
Good morning! Good news! My female clowns' PopEye is completely gone. I wished to share with you the news of her recovery. Thank you for your insight on letting her heal naturally. Have a great day ?
So Mote It Be
<Thank you for this update Kel. Excelsior! Bob Fenner>

Wrasse Problems; anomalous loss, blindness     RMF's go       10/19/15
I have an 80 gallon reef tank which is home to several corals and juvenile fish. It has been set up for 10 months and has had good stable water parameters for quite awhile. Our LFS comes once per month to do a deep clean and spot check all three saltwater tanks we have in the house. I do a 10% water change in this tank every week. Water param.s this weekend were
0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 8.2 pH, between 0-5 nitrate, salinity 1.024 and temp 77 degrees F. Prior to doing the water change, I use a turkey baster to get detritus off rocks and noticed something larger than detritus blown off the live rock onto the sand bed. It was my beautiful mystery wrasse - dead.
He had been exhibiting no strange behavior and ate heartily the day before (we feed a mixture of various frozen foods including mysis, bloodworms,
<I'd skip these last... not so much in marine, but freshwater systems have had troubles w/ feeding these sewer fly larvae>
Spirulina brine, rotifers and krill). I pulled him out and did not see any signs of damage to his body.
<Do you still have this fish? I would cut it open, look at the stomach contents. I suspect this fish ate something that didn't agree with it. Happens>
He looked like he had just died as there was no color loss yet. I did put him into a container with some of the tank water in case he popped up while I was cleaning. He had been with us for about three months. Today my melanarus wrasse seems to be behaving oddly. He looks fine, but I would swear that he can't see. He is bumping into other fish, rocks and corals.
We have had this wrasse for roughly 6 months and he has never had a problem. He looked hungry when I put food in the tank. Looked like he was trying to eat but was 'missing' the food.
<Blindness.... from what? A deficiency syndrome? I would soak foods at least once a week in a vitamin, HUFA, probiotic solution>

He has no clouding in his eyes, they look perfectly clear. I do have a 29 gallon quarantine tank that we keep permanently set up with a couple of Banggai Cardinalfish in it. I tried to catch him today but he hid behind the live rock. I thought I would try to get him tonight if he buries himself in the front of the tank where I can dig him out easily.
Obviously, I wonder if you have heard of this before.
<Thus far... have "heard" of such behavior in small Labrids; but these affects, loss are anomalous thus far>
I also wonder what could cause eyesight issues and how to treat.
<As stated>
Finally...will a wrasse be okay in a QT with no substrate. We have none at all in the QT although we do have three rocks that create a little cave area where fish can get cover.
<I would not move the wrasse>

Any advice is much appreciated!
Tiffany Cannon
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Wrasse Problems Earl's take       10/19/15

I have an 80 gallon reef tank which is home to several corals and juvenile fish. It has been set up for 10 months and has had good stable water parameters for quite awhile. Our LFS comes once per month to do a deep clean and spot check all three saltwater tanks we have in the house. I do a 10% water change in this tank every week. Water param.s this weekend were
0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 8.2 pH, between 0-5 nitrate, salinity 1.024 and temp 77 degrees F. Prior to doing the water change, I use a turkey baster to get detritus off rocks and noticed something larger than detritus blown off the live rock onto the sand bed. It was my beautiful mystery wrasse - dead.
<Sorry to hear. :( >
He had been exhibiting no strange behavior and ate heartily the day before (we feed a mixture of various frozen foods including mysis, bloodworms, Spirulina brine, rotifers and krill).
<This behavior is not unusual...a fish will often eat right up until death with no warning from appetite loss. As a side note, you can just leave out the bloodworms and stick to food of marine origin.>
I pulled him out and did not see any signs of damage to his body. He looked like he had just died as there was no color loss yet. I did put him into a container with some of the tank water in case he popped up while I was cleaning. He had been with us for about three months. Today my melanarus wrasse seems to be behaving oddly. He looks fine, but I would swear that he can't see. He is bumping into other fish, rocks and corals.
We have had this wrasse for roughly 6 months and he has never had a problem. He looked hungry when I put food in the tank. Looked like he was trying to eat but was 'missing' the food. He has no clouding in his eyes, they look perfectly clear. I do have a 29 gallon quarantine tank that we keep permanently set up with a couple of Banggai Cardinalfish in it. I tried to catch him today but he hid behind the live rock.
<Check WWM for designs on traps for hard-to-net species like this...can be made from plastic Coke bottle and such with bait inside.>
I thought I would try to get him tonight if he buries himself in the front of the tank where I can dig him out easily. Obviously, I wonder if you have heard of this before. I also wonder what could cause eyesight issues and how to treat. Finally...will a wrasse be okay in a QT with no substrate.
<On one hand the point of quarantine is that it is completely sterile. On the other hand I am 100% convinced that pure stress is a direct killer or huge contributor to the death of many fish. Because of this, I would absolutely always have some sort of cover for any fish, and none more than a wrasse that uses sand for cover...they do this for a reason and living in a shiny glass box, exposed, is probably a cure worse than a disease.
Bleach/nuke and *thoroughly* flush with fresh water some kind of decor for cover. Be it plastic aquarium plants in a pile, plastic shipwrecks or caves, or just PVC tubing (I get this in black from hardware stores, Home Depot, Lowes and cut it into appropriate sized pieces, heap it up tp give some safe cover to hide and recover in, then toss or sterilize it as above.
QT needs to be a "clean room" not an empty exposed box. You can medicate, observe, feed, and catch a fish just fine in this setup but some kind of circulation (simple airstone is fine). Obviously keep it heated, with clean water prepared separately from the main system, etc.. Sand is a hard call...would the extra stress from lack of a sleeping sandbed be worse than
possible contamination? I would err on the side of the sand but just use brand new sand in a Tupperware pan-shaped dish or what have you. No lights near the tank, a dark background, even a dark towel draped over it partially to obscure most of the light. There is a reason better dealers ship fish in black plastic bags now instead of clear.>
We have none at all in the QT although we do have three rocks that create a little cave area
where fish can get cover. Any advice is much appreciated!
<Excellent. This is what I mean as far as cover. Be sure to sterilize rock between each use of the QT tank or you may be tainting the process...live reef rock is definitely out. As for the root of the problem, what are the other inhabitants of the tank? Hard to make a call without knowing this...coral defense methods are not out of the question (stinging, chemical). May be internal damage from attackers, or parasites. Inspect it closely as you can for any outside marks. >
Tiffany Cannon
Re: Wrasse Problems      10/19/15

We have a very small chevron tang in tank, four small pajama Cardinalfish and a red scooter blenny. I think the corals we have are all fairly benign (hammer, frogspawn, slipper tongue, bubble and a couple of Paly frags) and we have no anemones (although we have two rather healthy looking Aiptasia that seemed to have come with the live rock). There is one trouble-maker in the tank. I have arranged for it to go back to the LFS on trade this upcoming weekend. We have a tube anemone that has really flourished in the tank. It is tucked in a corner and we attempted to 'wall' it off a bit with live rock. It has stung and killed a couple of corals. I had no idea how far out its tentacles were extending until I put a flashlight on the
tank last week in the middle of the night. During the day it's reach is half what it is at night! The fish seem to know instinctively to stay away from it. I knew it was possible that it might catch and eat a small fish, but didn't think the outer tentacles were dangerous to fish? I thought they were primarily for catching and pulling food down toward the center.
Any chance it can be the culprit?
<It's shocking (and fascinating) how much goes on in a reef at night as far as tentacles from "softies". Hammers and frogspawn can send out sweepers with much more reach than you might imagine...a foot sometimes. Anemones most certainly sting and stun fish, it's their entire modus operandi. I would not expect a wrasse to get nailed by them or sweeper tentacles, but it could happen. At any rate the clear but faulty eyes seem inconsistent with that to me...sounds almost like nervous system damage? Unless there are external wounds I would rule out the other fish. This is intended for retailers but serves as a concise checklist you should read through to try to diagnose this wrasse:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/aqbizsubwebindex/fishdisho.htm  Hope this is helpful. >
Tiffany Cannon
Re: Wrasse Problems      10/19/15
Thanks for the quick response. Good to know about the bloodworms. Most of the fish don't seem to like them much anyway.
<Good for freshwater, not so much for marine critters. Much better choices abound.>
I will pick up some vitamins tomorrow and start giving soaked food every week.
<Good nutrition is a must of course. I recommend soaking the food in Selcon if you can get it to him. Maybe via soaked mysis squirted via turkey baster or pipette as close to his face as you can manage. Wrasses are big eaters as you have no doubt witnessed and suffer from lack of food more than calmer, less energetic and greedy species in my experience, though a hunger strike of a few days is not something to stress out over unless it starts to show. A extremely helpful bit of info I learned years ago is to observe the "temples" of a fish...signs of starvation are shown there early and clearly by sunken temples. Hopefully this will not be an issue anyway.>
Hopefully our melanarus will pull through. I appreciate your advice not to move him. It is rather complicated navigating a reef tank full of corals with a fish net without doing some damage. And I'm noticing the sickest of fish can move really fast when they are being pursued! I do still have the dead mystery wrasse. I put him in the fridge in tank water to keep him from decaying. I'll let my husband or the LFS perform the autopsy. Ewww...necessary and interesting...but....Ewww.
<Good to have this available though. Keep us posted.>
Tiffany Cannon
Re: Wrasse Problems       11/3/15

Great news...after a week or so of acting completely blind but showing no outward appearance changes to the eyes, our melanarus wrasse started to look like his eyesight was returning.

He stopped bumping into things and seemed to have a better ability to navigate the aquascape and other fish, showing improvement each day. He started eating again after a week. He was picky at first and only went after bigger pieces (presumably because he could see them better). He seems now to have made a full recovery. As for the dead mystery wrasse, we didn't find anything out of the ordinary with him. It's too bad...he was very well-behaved toward his tank-mates and had much deeper coloration than many paler versions we see at the store. Thanks for your advice. We have
eliminated blood worms from the menu and have begun soaking food with Selcon. - Tiffany Cannon
<Ahh! I am reminded by reading Richard Ross's work on freshwater rays, that Thiaminase poisoning can be reversed by addition of B1 vitamin... Is part of Selcon.
Cheers and thank you for your report. Bob Fenner>

Bartlett's Anthias with one severe Popeye       4/30/15
<Am wondering why so many of your words are run together? Sticky keyboard?>
Hi Bob and crew, Thanks for all your work in answering questions. I have an Bartlett's Anthias with one severe Popeye. He is the dominate Male in a group of three. He had PopEye a week ago and it appeared to go away. Just today the PopEye was back and I wanted to see if using Epsom salt in the display tank is the proper course of treatment and how much to use.
<Yes; about a level tsp. per five actual gallons>
If not the proper treatment do you have any suggestions. I had recently added several new coral frags 9 days ago I added corals and a few days latter he got PopEye.
<Unilateral I take it... almost always due to physical trauma>

The PopEye looked like it went away and he appeared to get better. 4 days ago I added several other new frags and now he has it again and he is perching on my live rock. He has been dominate and chases the other Anthias around. I am thinking my moving things around may have caused him to get injured. Maybe ran into something or chases them different because of new additions.
Other things that may have been going on:
Other changes to the tank have been my calcium was 350 and my alkalinity was 8.4 DKH and I have been raising it up to 450 and I overshot to 490.
<I'd leave [Ca] in the 300s>
My tank has 116 gallons of water and I had added 20 ml of calcium on one day calcium went up to 400 and my alkalinity remained 8.4 DKH. I waited 2 days and added another 12ml and calcium went to 490 and my alkalinity went to 7.6 DKH. I did a 10% water change and my calcium went to 465 and my alkalinity went to 8.7 DKH. all my other reading were consistent Temp 77 degrees, PH 8.4, specific gravity1.024.
Will I have any issues using Epsom salt in my display to treat the fish? Is this treatment effective?
<Shouldn't and yes. Bob Fenner>
Re: Bartlett's Anthias with one severe Popeye....      5/5/15

Thanks Bob for all your help.
It turns out my sticky keys from previous post was due to writhing in word copying and pasting to my yahoo email, the conversion must have made the spacing erratic.
I measured the amount off recommended Epsom salt and it seemed like a large amount - 23.5 tsp - so I added the Epsom salt, but only half of what is recommended one day and added the rest the next day. The PopEye seemed to get better, but now is back.
<Ah; yes... exopthalmic conditions; when allowed to persist, can be the Dickens to reduce>
Searching the web it sounds like using the full dose is recommended and doing it everyday until it gets better. Should I try again and give the full dose?
<Mmm; not w/o changing some of the water out... the MgSO4 is still there; in solution>
Would you recommend doing it daily?
<Did I refer you to reading on WWM? Do you see the search tool? Use it or the indices. BobF>
For how many days? I am concerned about adding that much Epsom salt to the tank and what side effects it may have. Thanks.
Re: Bartlett's Anthias with one severe Popeye
Now: Bartlett's Anthias with Popeye both eyes           5/12/15

Hi Bob and crew, I have a male Bartlett's Anthias with Popeye. over the past two weeks he had Unilateral Popeye. so I treated the tank with Epsom Salt, just one treatment spread over two days. The Anthias' eye appeared to get better one day and worse the next and then looking better again. He appeared healthy, other the then Popeye, still chasing the females around and he has been eating well. Today when the lights came on he would not come out from the rockwork. After searching for him I found him perched under the rock work with Popeye in both eyes the initial affected eye being twice as big as the Popeye in the other . What would be a good course of action to take with this problem?
<Internal... action... bacterial most likely. Might have diffed (bonked on something) both sides>
And if you recommend qt any suggestions to get him out? Thanks a bunch.
<Mmm; hope... patience? Two nets... Bob Fenner>

Epsom salt treatment with high magnesium?     3/19/14
Hi Bob and Crew, I have been a follower of WetWebMedia for many years and have always found an answer in your extensive archives to my queries, until now. I have 2 chalk bass and one of them has developed PopEye in one eye only. As I saw the other one peck it near the eye a few days ago I assume this is the cause. After searching your web site I would like to follow the advice I found there and treat my MD with 1 tablespoon per 10 gallons with Epsom salts. However, this is my query/problem, I have high magnesium levels already. Its too long a story how this came about but I am convinced it was through using Reef Crystals sea salt to set up the tank because I had high readings for parameters i.e. alkalinity and calcium ( no magnesium test at first) right from the start! Now my readings are: Alk, now a bit low 7.8dKH,
<You could raise this up... to precipitate out the Alkaline earths (Ca, Mg)....>
pH 8.2, Ca 400ppm o.k. , and Mg 1600 way too high! The Mg was 1480 a couple of days ago but I dosed 1tsp Kalkwasser to raise dKH (then 7.1) and so that must be what raised the Mg
<Not... where would the Mg come from?>

because no other additives have been used! I have been doing regular weekly 10% water changes with instant ocean to try to get things back Into sync but not sure now how to get Mg readings down?
<See above. This or massive water change outs; replacing the water with that of less Magnesium>
Back to my PopEye problem, will adding Epsom salts make the Mg situation worse? what would you suggest?
<I would treat in the med. tank regardless; Not let the high Mg bother me>
I would be very grateful for any help you can offer and thanks again for such a useful and informative site! Jenny
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Re Epsom salt treatment with high magnesium?     3/20/14

Thanks Bob for speedy reply to message below, much appreciated!
I have inserted a couple more comments/questions, hope this is o.k.!
Hi Bob and Crew, I have been a follower of WetWebMedia for many years and have always found an answer in your extensive archives to my queries, until now. I have 2 chalk bass and one of them has developed PopEye in one eye only. As I saw the other one peck it near the eye a few days ago I assume this is the cause. After searching your web site I would like to follow the advice I found there and treat my MD with 1 tablespoon per 10 gallons with Epsom salts. However, this is my query/problem, I have high magnesium levels already. Its too long a story how this came about but I am convinced it was through using Reef Crystals sea salt to set up the tank because I had high readings for parameters i.e. alkalinity and calcium ( no magnesium test at first) right from the start! Now my readings are: Alk, now a bit low 7.8dKH,
<You could raise this up... to precipitate out the Alkaline earths (Ca, Mg)....> <<Think this is the way I will go with water changes as well, how high would you gradually go with Alkalinity rise?>>
<<A few dKH more... it won't stay... will precipitate out with the alkaline earths>>
pH 8.2, Ca 400ppm o.k. , and Mg 1600 way too high! The Mg was 1480 a couple of days ago but I dosed 1tsp Kalkwasser to raise dKH (then 7.1) and so that must be what raised the Mg
<Not... where would the Mg come from?><< Suggested this as all I could think of but looked on ingredients and see no mention of Mg so I am now stumped as to where it has come from!! Tested with RedSea titration but wonder if correct reading now!>>
<Me too; limewater; Kalk is Calcium Hydroxide... no Mg in it>

because no other additives have been used! I have been doing regular weekly 10% water changes with instant ocean to try to get things back Into sync but not sure now how to get Mg readings down?
<See above. This or massive water change outs; replacing the water with that of less Magnesium>
Back to my PopEye problem, will adding Epsom salts make the Mg situation worse? what would you suggest?
<I would treat in the med. tank regardless; Not let the high Mg bother me><< Do you mean main display here?
I couldn't catch the fish without tearing down the tank as he is small and many crooks and crannies in the reef! I read in archives its safe to dose Epsom salts at 1 tablespoon per 10 gallons, some say per 5 gallons, in main Display, do you still agree with this? Which dose should I use with my high Mg? Thanks so much for your help!>>
<<IF necessary in the main tank; yes. Trapping the Serranus, draining the tank down and removing most decor to remove it to isolation... may well be too stressful>>
I would be very grateful for any help you can offer and thanks again for such a useful and informative site! Jenny
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Epsom salt treatment with high magnesium (update)
... Plus move to Popeye, Epsom f's     3/23/14
Hello again Bob, thought you might like to know that the one dose (1 tablespoon per 10 gallons) of Epsom salts to my main Display has had the desired effect and my little chalk bass is making an amazing recovery from his, very bad PopEye (caused by the other little chalk bass)!
<Ah, good>
I am very grateful! As for the Magnesium problem, I have to admit I made a mistake testing! I used Redsea's test for the first time and my only excuse is that the diagrammatical instructions had a very small *5 printed outside the box which I didn't see, meaning I was 4 drops short of one of the chemical components used! My reading now is 1400 not 1500. Still high I know but not as scary! I am following your instructions to make this 3 times the calcium reading.
Once again thanks for your help and I will continue to use your brilliant archives as before. Jenny
<Thank you for this valuable follow-up. BobF> 

Salt water angel foggy eye       10/29/13
My 6year old Koran angel developed a foggy eye.
<Yeah... unilateral... mechanical injury...>

It started last Wednesday.
I started treating him with microbe lift actives both the Herbtana
<... of no use>
 and the artemiss but it does not seem to help.  He is still eating well but a little less active than usual. It seems his eye is getting worst for I was able to see his pupil before but now there is a redness to it as well and I can not see the pupil anymore. I have attached pictures. Please help
Carlo- Electric Eel
<....? Read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisindex.htm
scroll down to eye issues. Bob Fenner>

Re: Salt water angel foggy eye       10/29/13
Hi Mr. Fenner
Should I be putting him in a hospital tank and treating him with maracyn 
Carlo- Electric Eel
<You should be reading. BobF>
Re: Salt water angel foggy eye       10/29/13

I read up in the FAQ and what I gather is that with good nutrition and good water quality it should go away on its <own>
<Ah yes>

 but should I put something in the water to protect my angel against bacteria infection?
<If you're going the treatment per se route, better to get "whatever this is antimicrobial wise" into the fish... via feeding; best by injection (intraperitoneal- or intramuscular-ly. B>
Carlo- Electric Eel
Re: Salt water angel foggy eye       10/29/13

Do you have something to suggest I use ?
<Chloramphenicol Succinate... of course. B>
Carlo- Electric Eel
Re: Salt water angel foggy eye       10/29/13

Thank you. I will research to see where I can get it. Thank you for your help
Carlo- Electric Eel

Re: Salt water angel foggy eye   11/1/13
Hi Bob
Our angel has stopped eating. Could it be something else?
<... what is "it"? Likely the injury alone could/does acct. for a loss of appetite>
Carlo- Electric Eel
Re: Salt water angel foggy eye   11/1/13

The it is just still his eye being swollen and reddish. He hadn't eaten today so I was wondering if the swollen red eye could be a symptom of something else
<Keep reading
Carlo- Electric Eel

Re: Salt water angel foggy eye     11/12/13
Hi Bob
It's been a couple of weeks now and the angels eye swelling went down but is still red. I noticed he is starting to get a couple of red spots of the side of his body. He is also breathing a little heavier than usual. Could he have a parasite of a bacterial infection. ?
<... sure; how can/could you tell for sure? Sampling, 'scoping. B>

Please help. I really trying to get him better. I have been feeding food with garlic and keeping the water quality good but he doesn't seem to be getting better. All the other fish seem fine.
Thank you
Carlo- Electric Eel
Re: Salt water angel foggy eye     11/12/13

What do you meaning ...sampling scooping ?
<.... 'scoping; as in microscoping...>
 Can I do something to help ?
Carlo- Electric Eel
<Re-read re eye issues of marine fishes on WWM. Just good care is all I'd do here... HUFAs, comm. soak of foods; optimized water qual. READ! These "eye issues" take time>

Popeye dilemma – 12/02/12
I need some advice on dealing with my Coral Beauty that has Popeye on one side.  Paddle Boat (this is what happens when you let your kids name all the fish) most likely injured himself.  I have been slowly moving fish from two smaller tanks into a 55 gallon tank setup.  The Coral Beauty had been living with a pair of Blue Green Chromis.  My ammonia and nitrites are zero an nitrates generally hover around 5ppm in the old tank the Coral Beauty still resides in.  I almost never miss a water change and the water is crystal clear.  Based on personalities, the Chromis were the first to move.  On a side note, the Chromis have both found a nice cave to rest in.
This cave is also the spot my very patient and laid back juvenile Lyretail Hawkfish hangs out in.  So there you have it, 55 gallons of water, 120 pounds of live rock all carefully arranged and everyone is perfectly happy to squeeze into small spot when they are not out and about. 
<Heeee! Another example of an aquatic Murphy's Law>
Anyway, it only took a few seconds each to capture the Chromis but I'm pretty sure in those few seconds of confusion that the Coral Beauty crashed into something getting out of the way since his eye puffed up within a few hours.
<Likely cause; yes>
  He is still eating fine and swimming around but he was a bit more agitated which he exhibits by "chasing" his reflection. 
I covered the tank for a while
<Just tape a piece of paper over one end. This usually does it to eliminate internal reflections>
and he is less agitated but his eye is still puffed out after 24 hours.
My dilemma is that I'm almost positive the 55 gallon tank is a much better place for him to be as far as stress is concerned for a lot of different reasons.  I would capture him
<Why? To move? I would just leave in place>
 with a method I've done before where I remove everything from the tank, drain most of the water and then use a container on its side and close in on him slowly.  There are no gaps for him to escape out of so he eventually swims into the container and I lift him out.  The Chromis don't bother him and he is bigger than the hawk fish who apparently does not seem to mind other fish.  There will be no other fish in the tank.  My concern is that I may further damage his eye and that potentially, he may start to mix it up with the Hawkfish who I'm pretty sure will not back down if challenged.  So there you have it.  In your opinion, should I try to move the Coral Beauty now or try to keep him calm in his current home and wait and see what happens with his eye?
<This last is what I would do. Bob Fenner>
Re: Popeye dilemma       12/6/12

The Coral Beauty Popeye/injury has rectified itself.

 I scooped him out, did a slow drip to acclimate him to the new tank and everything is fine.  The Hawkfish was not amused and spent some time dive bombing the Coral Beauty but the Coral Beauty just sort of paid no attention when he got hit and continued about his business wandering around the tank picking at stuff.  The Hawkfish has given up trying to deal with the oblivious Coral Beauty and has gone back to hanging out on the power heads, heaters and whatever else gives him a good view of the world. 
Thanks for the advice.
<Welcome. BobF>

Bowers Parrotfish, now unilateral Popeye     7/25/12
Hello my fellow Aquarists. I noticed today when I went to feed, that my most social fish, the Bowers Parrotfish wasn't out front begging for food. I found Him in His night Cave and noticed his right eye was swollen.
<Only the one... a physical trauma>

 I noted he had Popeye. The eye itself did not appear damaged, and was relatively clear. when I put food in the Aquarium, He came out briefly, then scratched his injured eye against Live Rock. I then checked the parameters in my 40 Gallon Long Quarantine Tank, which is filled with the same water as my main display, and I keep running 24/7, and sent my wife to the LFS in search of medication,
 while I worked on catching the fish. I caught Him in about 15 minutes, and placed Him in the quarantine,
<I would not move this fish. Much more likely to further damage itself in a smaller setting>

 with 2 pieces of PVC Pipe to hide in. I treated the tank with 2 Teaspoons of PraziPro (oxybispropanole, Praziquantel) Liquid.
<Why? Do you suspect a "worm" pathogen?>

It says 1 dose should do the trick. I was wondering if you had any additional advice on what to do while I wait the 5-7 days for this medication to do it's job.
<Yes; per above. Put the fish back>
As you know, Parrotfish are hard to keep many times, and the fact this guy has been thriving, and is my biggest eater, really broke my heart to see Him down now. Should I keep trying to lightly feed Him Spectrum Pellet, and Vitamin soaked Mysis, or should I wait a day or 2. I have the Quarantine set up with a blind covering 3/4 of it, with natural sunlight hitting it all day. Would it also be a good idea to put a small amount daily, or my VitaChem, Selcon, Garlic mixture, that I soak the food in?
<Too likely to have issues, erratic water quality here>
I really want to save this fish and get Him back into the 500 Gallon Aquarium. Thank you as always for your advice and help.
George Link
<Return this fish to the main display. BobF>
Re: Bowers Parrotfish     7/25/12

I already had Him in the Quarantine before I got your reply Mister Fenner.
He seems relaxed in the Quarantine and is resting by the PVC Pipe. I was told by someone I trust a lot to use the medication I listed below, who has used it for eye trauma, and swelling, many times with 100% Success. Please advise me as to whether you still think I should remove Him now from the 40 Gallon long, and place Him back in the main display. I am greatly concerned about him continually rubbing his eye against the Live rock in the Display Tank. It appears something is bothering Him there. I will do whatever you advise. Thank you Mister Fenner.
<I have written my input already George. The choice of what to do is up to you. B>
George Link
Re: Bowers Parrotfish, unilateral Popeye  8/1/12

Greetings my fellow aquarists. Here is an update on my Bowers Parrotfish.
After placing it back in the Display Tank, the eye scratching on the Live Rock worsened and the size of the eye increased to where I don't know how it did not burst. The fish was listless, not interested in food, and appeared to be in very bad shape. I had to make a judgment call, and reluctantly, placed it back in the 40 Gallon Long Quarantine Tank. I purchased some Maracyn, and began the treatment. Within 2 days, the eye was half way down, after 4 days it was completely back to normal size, and I tested the vision by waving my hand against the Aquarium and the fish immediately reacted.! The 5 day course just completed today. The Parrotfish ate a bunch of Mysid Shrimp yesterday and is eating heartily today as well.! I did a 50% water change and placed fresh carbon in the filter, to remove the rest of the Maracyn. The Parrotfish is no longer laying in the shadows, but is swimming around in the front, in the natural sunlight.! My question now, is should I give this fish a couple days to recuperate after the Treatment, or introduce it back into the main display. I appreciate your help and advice as usual. Thank you.
George Link
<Likely time just going by, but thank you for this update and congratulations. BobF>
Re: Bowers Parrotfish  8/1/12

Thank you Mister Fenner for your quick response. In my update I asked if you recommend if I give the Parrotfish a couple of days to recuperate from the medication, or to place it back in the display Tank right away. Thank you as always for your advice and help.
George Link
<As usual, I'd shy on the side and be more conservative. Leave this fish where it is for a few days more. Cheers, B>
Re: Bowers Parrotfish  8/1/12

Thank you Mister Fenner as always.
George Link.
<Ah, welcome>
Re: Bowers Parrotfish, unilateral exophthalmia   8/19/20
Hi Mister Fenner. My Bowers Parrotfish same eye is now really swollen, and "clear" once again:( This time, however, he is out and about, eating well, and mixing with the other fish. The swelling returned 3 days ago, and as the last time, has been increasing daily. I have "not" removed him from the aquarium this time, and do not plan to, unless you suggest otherwise. I checked all Parameters and they are spot on. There is "no" aggression towards him, nor has there been from the other fish. He is also "not" scratching the eye this time, as he was before. He sleeps at night and rests in a large cave I built just for him, with plenty of clearance, and security. I am truly puzzled here, and would appreciate any advice. Thank you.
George Link
<Same as last time... leave in place, maintain good/stable cond.s. B>
Re: Bowers Parrotfish   8/19/20
Thank you Mister Fenner for the quick response. I will leave the fish in the Display Tank as you advised. This is the first time I have seen
recurring eye swelling in any fish I have kept over the past decade of being a Marine Aquarist. In your wealth of experience, is this something that happens more often than I believe it does?. Is it possible this could be a recurring event for the rest of this particular fishes life?. Thank you again, Mister Fenner.
George Link
<... please see WWM re Popeye and marine fishes. Some cases become very persistent. B>
Re: Bowers Parrotfish   8/19/20
Thank you Mister Fenner, I will do just that. I appreciate your time, as always.
George Link
Re: Bowers Parrotfish   8/20/20

Hi Mister Fenner. I read the link you provided and discovered Epson Salt. I had a 5 pound bag in my garage, so I went ahead and dosed 1 teaspoon per 10 gallons, in the 500 gallon display Tank.
<Worth trying>
 I will keep you informed of the fishes progress when it gets better. Thank you.
George Link
<Thanks George. B>

Pop Eye 9/20/10
Hello ,
<Hi Christopher>
I have a Banner fish with Pop Eye. It is crucial I get him better because he only has one eye. So I am going to move him from the 600 gallon tank over to a 44 gallon quarantine tank. I plan on using Furon or Nitro Furon. I see in your FAQS you mention using Epsom Salt as part of the treatment. How much Epsom Salt should I use per gallon and how many days should I treat it?
<Between 1 tsp per 10 gallons and 1 Tbsp per 5 gallons have been recommended. I personally use 1 Tbsp per 5 gallons, with a half dose on day 3. When doing water changes, I use 1 Tbsp/10gal. As far as duration goes, I continue until success is achieved.>
I was going to run that in combination with the medication. Please copy both of us in this email. Look forward to your response. Thanks.
Christopher Faiola
<Let us know how it goes, Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye 9/21/10
Scott T,
<Hi Christopher,>
Thank you Scott for the response. So I should add the Epsom Salt every other day right?
<I'd add a half dose on day 3 with your 5gallon water change. After that, I'd only add it to replace that which is lost in water changes.>
Right now I have put the Banner Fish in a 44 gallon tank with Copper Safe, Binox (Nitro Furozone) by Jungle Products, and Epsom Salt. I used 44 gallons of water directly from the main tank for the 44 gallon
I have a power head in there, shelter, heater, and airstone. Prior to putting the fish in there I gave him a 1 minute and 40 second freshwater dip. I saw parasites actually fall off the fish. I plan to do a 5 gallon
water change every other day. On day three I will add half dose of Epsom Salt along with the meds to the 5 gallons of water being replaced in the quarantine tank. I have a light over top of setup and plan to feed every other day to conserve on waste production. Any water being replaced will come right from the main setup so that it is well conditioned. Sound like a good plan? Any other ideas?
<That does sound like a good plan. I'd keep an eye on ammonia. Your Bi-daily feedings should help minimize that. But with no biological filtration present (it can't be with medications), ammonia is going to
creep up. Do the medications recommend any certain size water changes? If you have experience with the minimal feedings and successful quarantine, or have read about it, continue. You know what's best for your fish. My quarantine methods are slightly different, which I think comes from my background as a fish breeder. I feed like crazy, and change about 50% of the water daily. Also, I add ammonia blocker to the water, as even with daily large water changes, ammonia always rears its ugly head.>
<Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye 9/21/10

<Hi Christopher,>
Which Ammonia Blocker should I use?
<Whatever brand your local fish store carries. I use ChlorAm-X currently.>
I will add the blocker today to the quarantine tank right?
<Only add it if ammonia shows up on a test kit.>
It calls for 25percent water change on the fourth day of treatment. Should I do the 25 percent water change every other day as a preventative to avoid high ammonia?
<The best idea is to test water quality as often as possible. If ammonia shows up, do a water change and or add ammonia blocker. Do the water changes that your medications call for, and additional ones if necessary.
Be aware that water changes not called for by the medications might necessitate additional partial doses.
Look forward to your response. I plan on running the Antibiotics for 8 days and then continue with the copper for a total of 21 days. Sound about right?
<That sounds like a good plan to me.>
<Best Wishes, Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye
The Nitro Furozone is by Jungle and is called Bionox. It doesn't necessarily say on package for saltwater. It is in powder state. Does this variable matter or should I be ok?
<Nitrofurazone works in saltwater too.
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/furancpdfaqs.htm >
<Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye
Thank you. Sounds like I am armed with the tools necessary to take care of Mr. Banner Fish. Hopefully it comes around and gets well soon. I should expect some improvement within a week or so right? Take care.
<It does sound like you're doing the right stuff. Hopefully soon you will see results.>
<Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye 9/23/10

Thank you so much.
<Glad we could help.>
When I do the water changes I will just medicate whatever water I replace so I don't change the therapeutic levels of meds. As you can see I am a seasoned veteran just not as good as you guys. I've been doing it since 1994 but still have a lot to learn.
<You are quite an advanced aquarist; you definitely gave that impression.
It's nice to talk to someone who cares about their fish so much. Thank you for contacting us. Please keep us updated as to how it goes. Sometimes pop-eye goes away quick, sometimes it is really persistent. If it lasts more than a couple weeks, let us know and I'll pass on your message to another crew member who might have new ideas.>
<Best fishes, Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye 9/28/10

<Hi Christopher,>
OK, I got the Banner Fishes eye back in. The bubble went away. His eye is still healing and is a little cloudy. He has been in tank now for 1 week.
<Great Job!!>
This is the second treatment on Nitro Furuozone. Each treatment last 4 days.
I change about 8 to 10 gallons of water every other day. I still am running copper in tank and plan to run it for 2 more weeks or until fish is moved back. I add Epsom salt to the water that is being changed along with replacing the meds that have been loss in the change. I am also adding ammo lock to tank to keep ammonia down. Fish still isn't eating but swims a ton.
Tomorrow I m going to try Mysis with garlic. that should get his attention.
<Did the Mysis with garlic work? That is awesome that you got his eye better, but the non-eating is worrying.>
Wed. marks the completion of second treatment. Should I re dose it one more time with nitro furozone for another 4 days or should I give the fish a break and add something like Melafix or Pimafix to heal the remaining parts of eye? What is the next step here Scott?
<I'd like some peer-input here, so I'm going to email this to the rest of the WWM crew and see what they think.>
<Thanks for keeping us updated,
Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye 9/28/10
Dear Crew,
I have been helping a fellow named Christopher treat his Banner Fish with pop-eye for a week or so now. He has gotten the swelling down, but has questions about how long to continue the meds. Can someone here answer this? I'm not sure what the right answer is. Here is part of his last email, "Wednesday marks the completion of second treatment (of nitro furozone).
Should I re dose it one more time with nitro furozone for another 4 days or should I give the fish a break and add something like Melafix or Pimafix to heal the remaining parts of eye? What is the next step here Scott?"
Chris has been treating with copper, Epsom salts, and nitro furozone in a quarantine tank. The rest of the conversation can be found here:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/AccruedFAQs.htm .
It would be helpful if we could get the response to "ChristopherXXXX"
Thank you in advance,
Scott Tomko
<<Only time can/will tell whether this treatment will result in complete remission. Read the linked files here:
Bob Fenner>
Re: Pop Eye 9/29/10

Any update from your crew on what I should do next with Mr. Banner Fish?
<Just what Bob mentioned, that it is hard to say with pop eye.>
Today marks the end of the second treatment of Nitrofurazone.
<If his eye is looking better, you're doing great. Has the fish begun to eat?>
<Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye 10/7/10

<Hi Christopher,>
I moved fish today back in main tank. It still isn't eating but eye looks not infected but he appears to be blind. He is swimming into rocks and stuff.
This is the only eye he has. Do blind fish ever survive? Not sure if he is completely blind so I hope he gains some of vision back.
<It was a good move to try the fish back in the main display. You did a really good job treating the pop-eye, getting it back to normal size. I am very sorry to hear it hasn't been eating, and can not see. The only other option I see is to take it to some sort of fish-veterinarian.>
<Scott T.>

Re: Pop Eye (Houston Fish is Eating!!!!)
Houston we have banner fish eating!!!!!! He must not be blind. He started to
eat last night!!!!! This is awesome. Eye looks a bit better too.
<That is spectacular! I thought this was going to be the, 'sorry the fish died' email. Really good news! You have a wet-thumb.>
<Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye (Update on Banner Fish) 10/14/10

That Banner Fish still isn't eating. I've tried Mysis and formula 2 flake.
<Have you tried garlic soaks yet? Do they have live brine shrimp in your area?>
It shows some bubbles behind its eye. They are little and haven't escaped his body yet. His eye isn't really cloudy either. Looks OK except for the small bubbles in eye. Eye isn't swollen up either. The fish swims like crazy and hasn't ate in almost a month. Doesn't look skinny either. This is so weird.
I am starting to think he is jumping out of the tank at night going to the fridge feeding himself and then jumping back in. hahahaha. I don't get it.
He doesn't appear blind because he seems to have stopped bumping into stuff.
I added Epsom salt to main tank on Friday and yesterday. I am not sure what to do now with it. Just continue to be more patient? Any ideas?
<That is quite odd. Good that he looks healthy though. It sounds like you are doing good. I'm not sure what else would be better. I wish I had some ideas for you. Maybe he is finding enough food growing in/on the live rock? I suppose patience is the best option now, as the fish is looking relatively healthy.>
<Scott T.>
Re: Pop Eye (Update on Banner Fish) & Aquarium Maintenance Jobs
<Hi Christopher,>
I've tried garlic soaked food. No Live Brine yet but I could call to see if I can get some. The rock isn't really live because the lighting isn't strong enough but I do add seaweed on a clip.
<I bet the rock houses a good number of detritivores such as amphipods.>
From my work I am 10 minutes away from his shop where the aquarium is housed at. He asked me how much my time is worth. How much would it cost on average to do routine maintenance on a
537 gallon tank? You know water changes and so forth. Figure he buys all
supplies. Just a guess will do.
<This is a tough one. Is it your first maintenance gig? Often when starting out it's good to keep the prices low, so that you get more positive press. Do you enjoy doing it? Try and figure out how many hours you spend doing it, then figure out a decent hourly wage. See if he goes for that number. A lot of it depends on how much money the owner has, and what kind of tank. I've seen big reef tanks in peoples houses cost upwards of thirty thousand dollars a month in maintenance fees. But, smaller FOWLR sometimes only cost $50.>
<Scott T.>

Pop eye in school of pink Anthias 5/19/10
Hi WWM Crew,
Thanks for a very interesting site.
I have a school of 7 pink Anthias in a 40g quarantine system.
<Mmm, am a big fan of expediting the processing of Anthiines... They badly suffer for being in small, unstable bodies of water>
The water quality is good, with 5g changes twice a week, and the system has a great skimmer on it and a UV sterilizer. They've been in there for about 2 weeks. About a week ago one of them began to show some tail rot,
and a few days later a different one got pop eye in one eye. Now three of them have pop eye, one of them in both eyes. The tail rot doesn't seem to be getting any worse (and that one doesn't have any pop eye). They are all still eating well.
<Could be "just stress"... or hypersaturation of gas... likely via the skimmer>
My relevant water parameters:
Temp: 78
SG: 1.025
PH: 8.2
NH4: 0ppm
NO3: 0ppm
I don't think this is environmental,
<I do... that there is more than one specimen thus afflicted points this way>
and I don't think it's trauma related. So that means either bacterial or fungal, right? My question is: how do you recommend I treat this?
<If these fish are "clean"... which is very likely the case, I'd summarily move them to their permanent quarters>
The internet does not seem to have a consensus opinion on how to treat.
<I would not "treat". Bob Fenner>

Pop-eye Reoccurrence 4/16/10
Hi Crew,
I nearly wrote to you a few weeks ago regarding my Yellow-tailed Blue Damsel which was displaying an enlarged eye. Having read through many posts relating to this problem I came to the conclusion that he had taken a bump,
so I left him alone and observed and the swelling reduced back to normal over about 4 days. I was very relieved and glad to have read up on it and not rushed out to buy some meds. (Your website has been an invaluable resource to me over the last 5 years when I made the transition to marine from freshwater).
The problem is, he now has a large eye again. It is the same eye as before and it is swollen in exactly the same way so I am convinced that whatever caused it last time also caused it this time. I have attached some photos and wondered if you could give me some input on this?
<The damage, resultant expression of this eye could be unhealed... can be damage to blood circulation... And/or there could be a chemical/physical aspect/s of water quality at play here>
I have observed his breathing and he doesn't seem stressed as it doesn't appear to be an increased breathing rate.
He is housed in a 29 (UK) Gallon along with a Royal Gramma and an Electric Blue Damsel. I have had the Yellow-tail and the Royal Gramma for about 5 years now and the Electric Blue for about 2.5 years. They have all been living harmoniously for the duration with the Electric Blue occasionally asserting it's authority over the Yellow-tail by chasing it away but never appearing to "get physical". They all eat well (good quality flake with occasional frozen mix).
Water parameters are; (FOWLR)
SG - 1.025,
Ph - 8.1/8.2 (I know this isn't perfect)
Ammonia - 0,
Nitrite - 0,
Nitrate <15.
Temp - 24C.
There are a couple of Turbo Snails, a Red Legged Hermit and plenty of live rock, macro-algae and caves etc. for them to hide.
There is lots of water movement and they have all "appeared" perfectly healthy for years. The last livestock added was a White Striped Cleaner Shrimp (Lysmata) a couple of years ago, but they obviously don't live forever and he is no longer with us.
I have been fortunate enough to have not experienced any outbreaks of infections or disease.
Do you think he has just taken another bump?
<May well be>
This would surprise me as none of them have ever displayed anything like this in the years that I have had them so it would be strange if he managed to have it happen twice in a month! Your input, as always, is highly valued.
<I would "do nothing" again/still here. No treatment is likely to yield positive result other than simple patience. Bob Fenner>

Sixline wrasse getting a cloudy bubble over his eye 2/11/10
Hi All!
<Hi Christine, how are you today?>
I have not been in touch in some time - which is a good thing - all goes well. Currently I have a 90 gallon FOWLR (ok and a few mushrooms which happened by accident but now I am getting a coral itch. <Mmmm, this can be
detrimental to your wallet!> I do have reef lighting.)
I currently have:
70 lbs live rock - many caves and overhangs
30 gallon sump/protein skimmer/refugium
2 false Perculas
2 black ocellaris clowns
2 neon gobies
2 diamond gobies
1 Firefish goby
1 gorgeous flame angel
1 yellow tang
1 six line wrasse
All get along fabulously - but I do have one or two questions.
<Okey dokey!>
I have been keeping a close watch on my wrasse - three days ago his eye began to look a little cloudy and has a small bubble over it. It has not changed at all since I first noticed it _ which means it hasn't gotten worse, but it hasn't gotten better either.
<An injury probably>
Its barely noticeable to anyone but me at this point. I have not seen any aggression whatsoever in any of my fish- could it possibly be that he injured it somehow, brushed against a rock or something?
<Yes, the most likely cause, if it is just one and not both>
At this point should I continue to watch him closely or should I start pressing the panic button?
<The first>
Also - would I be pushing my luck if I were to try and work some kind of blue damsel into the picture.
I know they can be mean, but I have read that the yellow tail blue and the starcki may be less aggressive, but I won't believe it till I hear it from you - and even if it is true I still need to know if it could be a good fit considering the particular tankmates it would have.
<Personally I would not, they are a little aggressive, and I don't think they are anywhere near as interesting as the fishes you already have, so I would not take the chance>
Also - would any of those damsel do well by itself - I would rather not have more than one if I don't have to.
<I know I always seem to say this, but if it were me, I would not add any at all>
As always - your website is invaluable - please keep up the great work!
<We'll try!!>

Re: Sixline wrasse getting a cloudy bubble over his eye -- 2/12/10
Well - I am taking your advice. As hard as it is...
<I know... the temptation... often proves too much..>
If I have to add any gorgeous blue to my aquarium (and I do, I'm obsessed - I believe its quite out of my control now)- I may have to start with some blue Zoanthids or some really bright blue mushrooms - and work from there.
<Yes, you can get some really nice blue Ricordea floridae or Discosoma species>
Sadly and mysteriously, I lost both of my diamond gobies last night.
<Really, both? Unusual. There must be a factor to this>
Never saw it coming -they seemed fine. I found them both right next to each other belly side up this morning. I can't understand it. I tested my water parameters, the only thing that was off was my nitrates were up around just between 0 and 5 mg/L - which I wouldn't think would harm the gobies (unless I missed a lesson that said they are ultra sensitive) in fact today is my scheduled bi-weekly water change and tank maintenance day so I would expect some nitrates.
<You should be ok with those levels>
I have sand substrate and I love the way the gobies kept it looking nice.
Is there a secret to keeping them healthy for more than a few months? Is there a hardier sand sifting fish that I should consider?
<I do believe there are a few species - search WWM re. But I would be wary since you have just lost two, could there be some aggression here somewhere? Are you able to feed these animals correctly? A little investigation required here before any more fishes are added, and some caution>
The wrasse's eye looks the same - he is out and about, eating like a pig - spending more time than usual "asking" the neon gobies to clean him though. (There I go pressing the panic button again.)
<Yes, I think this fish will be fine>
As always I appreciate your help or any advice you can give me....
<No problem Christine>

Re: GOOD NEWS! Sixline wrasse getting a cloudy bubble over his eye - HEALED! Thanks to you! 2/25/10
Simon -
Great news! I left my Sixline alone (as you suggested) and his eye healed on its own! <Great!> Thank you for your advice and for keeping me from pushing the panic button and trying to "nurse" him back to health.
<No problem Christine I'm glad it all worked out, and thank you for this follow up>
You wisely advised me not to get any Damsels to add some blue to my aquarium. What do you think about a small Hippo Tang?
<No such thing as a small one -- they all get big, or should be allowed to>
Or is it too late because I have the Yellow Tang and Flame Angel and they already have established their territory?
<I think so. In my opinion the Paracanthurus should be given a six foot tank>
As for the death of both of my Diamond Gobies I have a few theories but its the best I can come up with.
<These are difficult fish to keep>
- I am pretty sure that I would have noticed aggression because I am vigilant with watching my fish. I am however embarrassed to say that in doing more research I did not provide them with any supplemental foods - other that what I feed my other fish. Also are those fish more active at night? Could it be possible that they showed aggression against each other at that time?
<Yes -- the fish tank is a very different place at night, and aggression does not have to be obvious, is not always easily detected -- it can be subliminal, just 'there' and sometimes this is enough for sensitive fish>
I have since learned that having two in the tank was not necessarily a good idea unless they were a true mated pair. In that case if I choose to try it again - am I better off sticking to just one?
<Do you really need another fish? I think fish tanks look better, nicer, more peaceful when they are not stuffed full of fish>
I did have a pair of Firefish Gobies that lived peacefully together for months and months - even slept in the same bolt hole - then all of a sudden one day I noticed one was missing his entire dorsal fin and hiding in a corner -- every time he tried to venture out of the corner, the other Firefish would charge him and nip him something awful.
<Mmmm, having a battleground in your living room is just no fun in my opinion, and this hobby should be nothing BUT fun. But, no matter how many times you say it, many people just continue to add more and more fish. If your system is balanced and you want to tinker around, you are better off doing this with different corals than fishes>
I floated the aggressive guy for a few days but it only helped temporarily. Eventually, I made arrangements to give one of them to a friend of mine who is in the hobby - but no more than a few days later I woke up and - to my surprise the aggressive one was missing - I tore my tank down looking for him and never found any remains whatsoever. The passive ones dorsal fin (and tail) grew back and I still have him today - and he is doing fine.
<Thank you for this tale Christine!>
Speaking of pairs of fish - I see one website that once in a while offers "pairs" of Flame Angels. My local fish store owner yelled at me for being naive and claimed that if I wanted to spend that kind of money to find out that the company paired them up themselves and that they will kill each other once they get into my aquarium - then I should go right ahead and learn my lesson the hard way.
<It would be a risk I agree>
(other than that she is great - and not afraid to give you her opinion)
<That's good to hear>
I already have a Flame so adding any other Angel is out of the question in my mere 90 gallon - however I am interested in your opinion of the odds of finding a true pair of Flames for an aquarium.
<Poor, although some Centropyge have been bred in captivity, so it is not beyond the realms of possibility>
Don't the males have harems?
<I don't know about the Flame specifically, but many Centropyge do, yes, so I would not be surprised>
My Flame is gorgeous (deeper red than most I have seen) and seems to have quite a close, friendly relationship with my Yellow Tang. At times the Tang even seems protective of the Flame Angel. Is this unusual?
<Whenever I've had these they have definitely been loners. Have you checked our FAQS on these?>
Thank you for all you have done!
<No problem Christine>
You have saved yet another fish!
<Marvelous news! WWM strikes again! Simon.>
25/02/10 Sixline wrasse getting a cloudy bubble over his eye - chatting, really
<Hello again Christine>
Well Simon - you can't blame an aquarium lover for making one last desperate attempt to get a blue fish - but I know when I am defeated!
<Heee! Victory!>
Your explanation was perfect and it reminded me of a game I used to play when I was a girl called "don't spill the beans". At this point I seem to have a good balance and anything I do from here on out (with fish) could be the bean that tips that balance.
<Indeed, and a good analogy>
I wouldn't want to take that chance. <No>. You also brought up another good point - the Tang will grow (but I figured I had plenty of time to worry about that)
<Actually, no. This fish will be psychologically crowded immediately>
but - some of my other fish will also grow.
<Yes they will, the Zebrasoma especially given good care>
As for keeping my sand looking nice - maybe a few more Nassarius Snails or a Fighting Conch - and coral for colour or perhaps a clam as I get more confidence.
<Yes, I think this a better path -- you can get some fantastic blue Tridacnids>
As far as my Tang and Flame - I will read more FAQS. I am hoping that what I have interpreted as some sort of "friendly behaviour".... the way they follow each other around, seem to always hang on the same side of the tank grazing on the same rocks, dart to the same place if startled - isn't actually some form of intimidation, stalking or territorial behaviour.
<Interesting behaviour for sure>
I won't lie, I have seen the occasional tail slap and chasing - but usually only if one invades the others sleeping quarters, and even then, not always, sometimes they don't seem bothered by the visit at all. However, it wouldn't be the first time I've been outsmarted by a fish. Probably not the last time either.
<You and me both, but don't tell my wife or I'll never hear the end of it!>
As far as stories - I have more fish stories than I have people who will listen - so I wouldn't encourage me if I were you!
<Oh no, what have I done?>
For instance my Orange Clowns have laid claim to every Anemone ornament I have in my tank (which is now three). Preventing the black and white ones from going near any - no matter how many times I change the placement of them in the tank or how far apart from each other I place them. I am starting to see this as potentially a bigger problem with bullying than I originally thought based on what I have just learned.
<Mmm, Clowns can be terribly territorial, it is best to only have one pair to a tank>
I need to watch with a new perspective. Today I placed the ornaments in "undesirable" locations - such as front and centre in the aquarium and wherever there is heavy foot traffic passing by the glass. As a last resort, maybe I should remove the ornaments all together. Otherwise I don't know how many ornaments I have to buy before the orange guys can't keep up:)
Well - thanks again Simon.
<No problem Christine.. just a slight 'prod' here -- this e-mail service is primarily for questions of the 'help' variety, we do have a BB for general conversation and such..>
I don't think I would have been able to stay in the hobby if I didn't have such a reliable source as WWM!
<Well that's great news!>
Do you guys give info on corals too?!
<Yes, plenty. See here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/cnidaria.htm>
Not spilling the beans,
<Well done! Don't give in to it!>
Re: 25/02/10 Sixline wrasse getting a cloudy bubble over his eye - chatting, really
<Hi Christine>
Yes got it. Understood. I apologize.
<No need to Christine, really.>
Farewell and thanks again! (especially from my husband who is thrilled that someone talked sense into me. <Heee! Something he struggles with I bet!> I am not going to mention coral - I want him to enjoy the moment. I will look for the BB - (not sure what it is - but I will find it). If people share stories and I can learn from them it sounds perfect to me!
<Me too. The WWM bb can be found here: http://bb.wetwebmedia.com/ .>
Take care!
<You too, and good health to you and your fishes, Simon>

Unilateral exophthalmia in P. squamipinnis 2/2/2010
Hi WWM-Crew,
one of my Anthias (P. squamipinnis) has an extreme case of exophthalmia and which I first noted a few days ago, it is unilateral, so I suppose that it originated in some sort of injury, as these fish tend to hide between corals and display some very hierarchical behavior in the group
<Some! Almost continuous!>
(I had the group for about 2 years and there are no signs of disease/dietary deficiencies etc).
As the fish is in a well established 200g SPS tank and since I am afraid that netting it would injure the eye even further or possibly even make it burst, I don't think there is much I can do except from playing around with salinity (up or down of max. 1-2 ppt, since I have stony corals and am currently at 35ppt) or adding some Epsom salt to the tank (of which I am not convinced in marine settings as homeopathic doses might have no effect and larger doses might cause ionic imbalances that are potentially hard to rectify).
I read that in a prior case Bob has suggested to lower salinity to help the fish - I understand that from a systemic perspective this might aid the fish but from a purely osmotic standpoint I wonder if this wouldn't be counterproductive and the salinity should be raised to literally "suck" the water out of the eye.
<Mmm, I would not manipulate the water density here. Too hard on your Stony Corals>
I am sorry for being so longwinded, but the eye really looks more like a Bubble Eye Goldfish's, does not seem to get better and I am afraid it might burst if I don't do something.
Thank you, Alex
<I urge just being patient here. The fish will likely heal of its own accord. This may take weeks. Bob Fenner>

Re: Unilateral exophthalmia in P. squamipinnis -- 2/3/10
Thank you very much, Bob!
I'll be patient and hope for the best ;-)
Cheers, Alex
<Ah, good. Cheers, BobF>

Sick Chromis? Eye trouble 7/25/08 Hi guys. I wanted to thank you for your input on the 'Anthias/ Clown fish' situation you gave me earlier in the week and for responding so quickly! Hopefully, you will recall a problem I mentioned in the fore- mentioned e-mail about the Green Chromis acting strange and won't eat. Well, it's been 4-5 days now since he's eaten. I have him <This, and most Chromis species are very social animals... will NOT do well being kept solitarily> in a breeder's net because I noticed he seemed to bumping into the glass and has something on his eye that looks like an air bubble. <Could be consequent to collection damage...> The bubble is clear and his eye doesn't seem to bulging out or anything. He actually looks healthy with the exception of this 'air bubble' on his eye, which is definitely bothering him if he won't eat or interact with the other fish. I spoke with my LFS and she said she read something about symptoms like this, but she couldn't remember where and tried to find info on it, but she was unsuccessful (but is still searching for me). Do you know what could be wrong my Chromis? <Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/pop-eye.htm the linked files at top... the citations re bubbles trapped in fish eyes> What causes it? Is there anything I can do to help him get better? Should I leave him in the net and for how long? <As stated... and I would release this fish from the Net> Do you have any other advice for me? Oh, I told you previously that I have a 55gal, but if fact, it's a 60gal. I know that's not much of a difference, but I just wanted to clarify that. Thanks, for your help and I hope to hear from you soon. Thanks again, Mikki <Read on Mikki... I do hope this fish self-cures. Does happen. Bob Fenner>

Air Bubble in Eye 6/22/08 Hey guys, <Joe> Thanks in advance for the help (as always). I have a dilemma as I was about to move a group of random damsels from my smaller 75g tank to my display 240g tank when I noticed my Deep Water Canary Damsel had a strange air bubble above one of his eyes. Other than that he is very healthy, active, and acting otherwise normal. <I see this> I have looked up Pop Eye and Gas Disease and this does not look like either of these. I'm concerned about moving him into my mine tank because I'm not sure what it is or if it is contagious. I'm guessing it's not, but really don't want to risk it. Attached is a picture, best I could get of a speedy damsel. Any ideas what it could be or how to treat? <Is gas... associated with the blood vessels of the eye... if this fish were newly collected, I'd guess the gas was from an embolism from having been too rushedly brought to the surface... There are other etiologies... blockage, damage... cures... are simply patience and good general care/maintenance really.> Joe
<Bob Fenner>

Re: Air Bubble in Eye 6/23/08 Thanks Bob! So nothing contagious or anything that would prevent me from putting him in general population? Anything to worry about? <Mmm, no. This is correct. BobF>
Re: Premnas biaculeatus, The Maroon Clownfish, hlth., cloudy eyes 4/13/08 Hi Guys: <Hi Robert, Mike I, here> I finally got my 55 gallon fish only tank's nitrates down from well over 100ppm to between 20-25 through less feeding and more meticulous overall care of the aquarium. <Good stuff!> There are only four fish: A Dwarf Lion, a Yellow Tang, A spotted Cardinal and a Common Clown. A few days ago, I noticed a cloudy, translucent film over half of one of the Tang's eyes. Today, it looks like the Lion is starting to show a trace. <OK> I'm always hesitant to put meds in the water fearing destruction of the bio filter and since it looks like it's spreading in the tank, isolation doesn't seem to be a viable option. I am absolutely "religious" about maintaining my tanks and can't for the life of me understand how anything got into the water as I haven't added any new specimens. My source water is pristine RO/DI. As always, your help is very much appreciated. Regards, Robert <Well, Robert, a lot of "cloudy eye" can come from physical injury/incidents, but if more than one fish is coming down with the same symptoms, then it's likely the cause lies elsewhere. One would first look at water quality, and since your nitrates have been high, it could be the result of prolonged exposure to less than ideal water quality. Having brought it down you may see the cloudiness gradually disappear providing you keep up with your attempts to keep the water quality right. If not, then next guess would be some sort of bacterial infection, which will need treatment. Treatment outside of the tank would be the preferred option. Search the indices here for "cloudy eyes" to find recommendations on a course of treatment. Good luck. Mike I>

Re: Tang Eye Damage 4/13/08 Thanks very much Mike. <Most welcome> It seems that it is only the Tang that has one cloudy eye so my assumption at this point is injury. He is always hanging WAY to close to the Lion. Maybe that's what happened. <Very possible, I'd expect to see some improvement over the week if it's physical injury, and if not look further. The best of luck.. Mike I>

Sun, 2 Mar 2008 11:43:40 -0600 Hey Bob: <Not Bob today but Mike I with you here> My Maroon is over five years old now and has lived (alone) in two different nano reefs. The first at only 6 gallons and for the last several years in my JBL 12 gallon Nano Cube. This has got to be the healthiest and happiest (except for my Dwarf Zebra Lion in my FO 55 gallon tank) of all of the marine species I've tried. <OK> Two weeks ago, I had the nano crash due to a stuck heater which cost me most of my coral and nearly killed the clown. <Ouch!> She loved to nestle in a large Trumpet cluster and also on the Mushrooms. Since those are now gone, she now just lies in the sand bed (can't be too good?) when not swimming. What is your best recommendation for a symbiotic anemone for this fish? <In a nano that size, none I'm afraid> The nano is slowly coming back and just suffered an quick ammonia spike but the nitro cycle has safely resumed. The beautiful purple coralline encrusting the back of the tank didn't survive and is now just white or VERY light pink. Should I have scraped this off before starting over. I don't want to mess with it now though. Is it safe or will it regenerate? <Although possibly un-aesthetic, I wouldn't worry about it. If some remain healthy they will likely come back> At any rate, I just wanted to let you know that I had indeed kept this species in a small environment successfully. Regards, Bob Sabbia <Thanks, Bob. I don't know if you have conversed with the Crew/Bob prior to this email, as previous correspondence was not attached. Regarding the small environment, in the wild this type of clown in particular will generally not leave it's host anemone much and may be more suited to a smaller confine. Nonetheless, if asked outright, I would probably advise a larger tank generally. Who would choose to live in a motor home if they could have a castle? Heee. Certainly, the tank is too small for any of the hosting anemones. As it happens, how big is your clown? Adult females can reach around 5 inches, and yours looks a little smaller in your picture... All the best, Mike I>

Re: Pop Eye remains... to some degree. 12/27/07 Merry Christmas to all!!! (er, and Happy holidays, Hanukah, Kwanzaa, whatever I missed.). <And to you and yours> Just thought I'd ask some advise <Advice> on a pop-eye follow up. It's been about a month now and my Passer Angel still has pop-eye. sort of. <These conditions/injuries can persist... for months... some never resolve> The ailment itself is gone, the eye is clear and he has vision, eats well, etc. I have watched as the air trapped behind the eye has migrated upwards, so that at the top of the eyeball it looks as though there's a large air pocket. I think that this is all that remains of the problem, if this air is released the eye would most likely return to normal. Is this something that will happen over time? <Maybe> It appears that it gets closer and closer to the surface, as if the eye membrane is getting thinner. <Good description> All tank mates are happy and joyous, even the angel is aside from his extremely large eyeball. All water parameters are good (blanket statement, but after writing numerous times, you can bet that all are covered. Thomas Roach <Just time going by Tom, and your good care... BobF>

Pop Eye... Neale's go... apparently double-posted... 12/4/07 Hi, thought I might get your opinion on some treatment options. I wrote and email about a month ago about a damsel getting Popeye and it going away in a couple of days. No other fish had been affected. <Good.> I left for vacation about 10 days ago, and right before, my passer Angel developed Popeye. I read in Bob's book about it, and there wasn't too much referenced for that ailment. Reading in 'Marine Aquariums for Dummies' didn't shed too much light on it, either. Most of the FAQ mentions Epsom salt, which I have not used yet, but is an option. <The problem with Popeye is that it's a symptom. Like a fever or a skin rash. It can be caused by a variety of things, so no single cure is guaranteed to work, any more than a fever caused by Malaria will be cured by a treatment designed for fever caused by the Flu. The Epsom salt treatment helps by reducing the swelling, but beyond that, it can't fix the underlying problem. Since Popeye is generally associated with environmental issues or mechanical damage, the accent tends to be placed on prevention rather than cure. Do see here -- http://www.wetwebmedia.com/popeyefaqs.htm -- for more.> The Passer angelfish is the only fish that has it. It affects one eye. The other tank mates are a lunare wrasse, a yellow tang, and two damsels. All other fish are in excellent health. Before leaving I did a 25% water change, cleaning all pads in the canister filter, put fresh carbon in another, etc. The salinity is at 1.023, 0 ppm of ammonia, nitrites, and <10 nitrates. My protein skimmer produces regular waste, but not in huge quantities. <Ok.> I thought about putting this fish in a hospital tank, but have not for two reasons. One is that I don't think that a 6 inch Passer would do well in a 20 gallon tank for any period of time, and second I am terrified of damaging the eye further when netting him. <Certainly your concern about putting a big fish in a small tank is well founded. As for moving a fish with Popeye, I'd recommend using small buckets (of the sort used for selling ice cream, for example) rather than a net.> I am thinking of using Mardel's Tri-Sulfa, which says that it will NOT damage the biological filter. <And neither will it do much for the Popeye.> I am currently adding something called Gel-Tek with Tetracycline to his food, which is mysis shrimp, marine cuisine, and angel formula 1 and 2. Do you think these methods will be effective? The angel, other than the huge expanded eye, is in good health and color, and is eating well. <The thing here is that bacterial infections typically (if not always) inflame both eyes; mechanical damage only inflames the one. So my guess here is your fish was damaged somehow, perhaps by clumsy handling but alternatively by running into a rock or something. All you can really do is use the Epsom salt treatment to reduce the swelling, and let the fish heal naturally. Provided water conditions are perfect and you give a healthful diet, this should happen, albeit very, very slowly.> Thanks for your thoughts, and I hope you all had a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving. <Ah well, I'm British, so all we see in Thanksgiving is the happy day when we got rid of some stubborn, sometimes violent religious fanatics who wanted to put the laws of their scriptures ahead of the law of the land. Plus ca change, plus C'est le meme chose! Thomas <Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>

Pop Eye, SW /RMF 12/5/07 Hi, thought I might get your opinion on some treatment options. I wrote and email about a month ago about a damsel getting Popeye and it going away in a couple of days. No other fish had been affected. <Okay> I left for vacation about 10 days ago, and right before, my passer Angel developed Popeye. I read in Bob's book about it, and there wasn't too much referenced for that ailment. Reading in 'Marine Aquariums for Dummies' didn't shed too much light on it, either. Most of the FAQ mentions Epsom salt, which I have not used yet, but is an option. <Yes... exophthalmia is a condition with a few standard etiologies, with some variations> The Passer angelfish is the only fish that has it. It affects one eye. The other tank mates are a lunare wrasse, a yellow tang, and two damsels. All other fish are in excellent health. Before leaving I did a 25% water change, cleaning all pads in the canister filter, put fresh carbon in another, etc. The salinity is at 1.023, 0 ppm of ammonia, nitrites, and <10 nitrates. My protein skimmer produces regular waste, but not in huge quantities. I thought about putting this fish in a hospital tank, but have not for two reasons. One is that I don't think that a 6 inch Passer would do well in a 20 gallon tank for any period of time, and second I am terrified of damaging the eye further when netting him. <I agree with you on both> I am thinking of using Mardel's Tri-Sulfa, which says that it will NOT damage the biological filter. I am currently adding something called Gel-Tek with Tetracycline to his food, which is mysis shrimp, marine cuisine, and angel formula 1 and 2. Do you think these methods will be effective? <No... but won't do much harm either... and just time going by may effect a cure here> The angel, other than the huge expanded eye, is in good health and color, and is eating well. Thanks for your thoughts, and I hope you all had a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving. Thomas Roach <Unilateral in both cases... I am thinking out loud here... that these may be incidences of mechanical injury alone, or primarily. Do you have much outside light on where the tank is during the night? Leaving some on may help your fishes to find their way about, avoid swimming into objects. Bob Fenner>

Re: Pop Eye 12/7/07 Thanks again Bob (And Neale, too!) for the Popeye info. I did add the Tri-Sulfa prior to getting the response, the crap turned my entire tank a dark green and I'm now filtering it out with carbon... it is slowly returning to normal. Ugh. <You should know better Tom... to investigate before pouring such into your system> The Passer angel seems to be improving... the eye seems bigger, actually, but the cloudiness is gone and it seems to have some improved vision. When it was cloudy I had to drop food on the good side for it to see it, now it seems to be able to see and eat its food from both sides. <Good> I can see a large air pocket in the eye, above the pupil, like it's trying to get to the eye surface for release. One thing I notices was a cut above the eye, that you can now see a bit since the cloudiness has cleared up. I'm thinking the spine of the yellow tang might have caused this. <Possibly> I've noticed that they posture on occasion with each other, but generally get along well. So we will stay the course with time and water quality. Every thing else in the tank is doing very well. If you can think of anything else, please say so, but I think we are seeing some improvements. Thomas Roach <Good news. Thank you for the update. BobF>

Re: Pop Eye 12/7/07 You're right. I investigated the effects the medication would have on the biological system, and it's supposed treatment effects, but not the dyeing effect. Another lesson learned. You guys take care! Thomas Roach <Will do, am doing. RMF>

Queen angel gone blind? Reading, using WWM 11/21/07 Bob - I'm a first time user and need help with my 1 year old Queen. Our salt got out of whack last month so we did a water change and treated the tank w/copper and Melafix. <... not in your main tank, please tell me> Our niger trigger had ich and our queen angel started hiding in the reef, although we did not see any ich on her. After we got the water stabilized (salt is at 1.012), <... also not a fan of hyposalinity...> the queen never went back to normal. It's been about 2 weeks. She is not eating well and although seems hungry, doesn't seem to "see" the food. She will venture out of the reef and act like she is looking for food in the sand, but a Mysis shrimp or piece of algae will float right by her and she won't eat it. I read a posting about another queen doing a "shimmy", and she has what looks like a twitch. Her eyes are clear, but she just acts like she can't see. She used to be the boss of the tank and now she is very passive and hides. Can you possibly know why? Thanks! Kim Smith <... the exposure to the copper... possibly the leaf extract, the lowered spg... might all by themselves or in combination have brought about this condition. Only time can/will tell whether it will be reversed. PLEASE, don't write w/o having looked (the search tool in the process of contacting us... the indices) re these materia medica... and hypo... You've over-stressed this fish, these fishes... There are ameliorative actions you might try to restore their health. Again, all posted on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Eye Trauma-->bubble -- 11/20/07 Hello again, <Hi there> I have a Harlequin Tusk that was bullied about a month and half ago by a Picasso Trigger which has since been returned to the store. The last straw was the removal of what seemed to be the cornea of the right eye of the tusk. <Hopefully not too much...> The eye has since healed, but he/she cannot see out of it, and there seems to be what looks like a large gas bubble under the newly formed membranous layer. <The eyes of vertebrate animals are highly vascularized> I have inquired to several different people. One stated that the eye is a lost cause and will eventually be a total loss and become a caved in hole. <Mmm, not necessarily, no> I saw a brief mention by Bob that the eye could take weeks (already passed) to months (approaching two) and that the bubble would self absorb. <Ditto> I am tempted to perform some sort of sterile perforation of the membrane to see if that relieves the pressure which might help it in recovery. <I would not do this> The tusk eats well, does not seem to be in any pain, and the only time you can see a problem is when it is swimming and gets startled by another fish it didn't see coming. My questions to you are: 1. Should I leave well enough alone and see what self healing the fish can do or should I "assist" in the process and perform the perforation? <The former> 2. Is there anything else you think can/should be done to aid in the healing process? <Mmm, not really> 3. Does the cornea actually regenerate or is this just some sort of membrane that reformed over the wound? <The cornea itself, as in humans, does "rapidly" (relatively histologically) regenerate... the damage inside may not or may take very long to resolve> I have included some pictures so you can compare the good eye to the bad and one profile where you can see how far the eye is sticking out. The pictures are not the best, but it took me almost an hour to get these. He/she will just not stay still long enough. Thank you for your help. Sincerely, Scott <Only time can/will tell here. I urge patience. Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Regal Angel with pop eye 10/16/07 Hi Crew, <Kan> Good Evening <And to you> My regal angel, still under Cupramine QT developed pop eye on one side. It is feeding OK, although not as vigorous as before he got the pop eye. <To be expected...> After trawling your website, I discovered that Epsom salt will help to alleviate the pop eye. Will it have any adverse effect if I add Epsom salt to the water that has already been dosed with Cupramine ? <Mmm... not much, no> I already did a 25% water change yesterday but the pop eye did not improve. I am planning another 25% water change tomorrow and hope the situation will improve. The angel is about 7 inches and takes about 3 to 4 New Life Spectrum 3mm pellets together with 2 to 3 very small pieces of Ocean Nutrition frozen angel formula daily. Is this enough to keep him going ? <Hopefully so> Thanks for reading my longish mail Regards, Kan TY <I would move this Pygoplites back to larger, more stable quarters as soon as expedient... The Popeye will cure itself in time. Bob Fenner>

Re: Regal Angel with pop eye 11/07/07 Dear Bob Thanks for your reply below. The pop eye has since recovered. <Ah, good> Just one week ago, he was infested with gill flukes and stopped feeding for a few days, a Prazi based medication was administered and I am happy to say that he started eating again. <Good> Although he feeds well now on a diet of NLS 3mm pellets, Ocean Nutrition Angel frozen formula, Nori sheets and Hikari Marine "A" pellets, he does not seem to be gaining weight. The area behind the eyes is by no means "pinched" but it is not as convex when compared to another 3" regal whom I have in the display tank. Other than not gaining weight, he is in good shape and inquisitive. Is there something to worry about or am I just being paranoid? Thanks <Best to act on being concerned... I would offer more food, more often... Do you use "mud" in your filtration... have a sump/refugium? This might well help here. Bob Fenner>

Chalk Bass problems Hi there, my name is Rachael and I was hoping you could help me with something. I have a 50 gallon marine tank, it's 6 months old and has set up nicely. The water quality is good and we just recently purchased VHOs so we could have some neat corals and an anemone. My question for you though has to do with my Chalk Bass. << Keep him, great fish to have. >> He was the first fish that we purchased, we've had him for about 5 months. Within the first three or four days that he was in our tank, one of his eyes puffed out and was like that for about a week. It went back to normal and within two days it was all puffed out again, it looked as though there were air bubbles under his scales, it was really big! But after about a week and a half, it went back to normal. Then about a week later, it puffed out again, bigger than either of the two times before, and it looked as though it were going to pop; well it didn't then but it took about three weeks for it to go back to normal. While my husband and I were going through this ordeal with our fish, we couldn't find any sort of disease that matched the symptoms of our fish, so we sort of wrote it off as an injury. We have about 20 pounds of live rock in our tank and he likes to swim really fast in and out of the rocks, so it seemed plausible. About a week ago, his eye was all puffed out again, worse than ever, and two days ago, the top of it popped, so it was still kind of puffy at the bottom. The top 'skin' was hanging over his eye impairing his vision, and then yesterday, the rest of it popped. I can't tell if he still has his eye or not because the floppy skin surrounding it is blocking my view of it. I was wondering if you knew if his eye might grow back or if he will possible be blind in one eye? << He is most likely blind in that eye. It is unfortunate, I would have taken him out of the tank, and into a hospital tank the first time it happened. In fact, I would still do it now, and treat him with some antibiotics from a LFS. >> Do you know of anything that could have caused the puffiness, besides injury? Is there anything I can do - take him to a fish doctor or something? Thanks for your time, I look forward to your reply. << That is tough, good luck with him. >> Rachael Evans << Blundell >>

Popeye- PT 2! Just thought I would follow up. The eye is already looking better barely swollen at all and he is out and swimming all over the tank and eating good, so I guess all is good. Will treat him though, if I can catch him! lol <Well, the fact that he is active and moving is great to hear!> I noticed the Purple, now that he has rocks, is rubbing up against them. Do tangs just normally do this or is this a bad sign? <Well, "rubbing" and scratching is not something that is normal in a healthy fish, for the most part. An occasional "scratch" or two is nothing to be overly concerned about, but consistent rubbing on tank decor is a sign of a potential problem. Keep a very careful eye on this fish, just to be sure that everything is okay> No spots and was in qt for 3 weeks and I watched him at the fish store for two weeks before purchasing him (them) and they have been disease free thus far. I did have a bad case of ich that wiped out my tank, but I removed the two remaining fish, put them in QT and let the tank go fallow for 6 weeks, lowered the salinity to 1.015 and raised the temp to 86 for four of the fallow weeks and treated the remaining fish in qt with copper. I did the same thing with the salinity and temp. No signs of any ich, so just wondering if this is normal for Tangs. Haven't seen any other fish do this. <As above- do keep an eye on this. Of course, these guys do have a propensity to get ich.> Thanks and keep up the great work! Couldn't handle this hobby without yall! JB <You're quite welcome, JB! Glad to be here for you! Good luck! Regards, Scott F.>

- Moorish Idol Popeye - Hey guys, I lost your reply about my Idol but thought I better give you an update. I wrote to you on Jan 18 and stated that my Idol had severe Popeye in both eyes. He hadn't eaten in about 2 weeks at the time. Just this week he started eating again and is eating vigorously. One eye is still terrible and he appears to be blind in it. <Bummer.> The other eye is pretty good now but he can't seem to pinpoint his food very well. He tries hard though and eventually gets it. Maracyn didn't seem to work and neither did Furan-2. <The causes of Popeye aren't always bacterial... and in those cases Maracyn and Furan compounds won't do anything to help.> Prayer was the best option. PS: you said that they are best viewed in the wild--I agree. My wife and I both have dove the Kohala and Kona Coasts of Hawai'i and they are magnificent. Moorish Idol lovers, don't give up. <I'm sorry, but I just don't agree... when 99% of these fish that are caught for use as pet fish, die... something ain't right. Hope things work out for you and your Moorish Idol, but having dived with them myself, I just can't encourage anyone to keep them. Cheers, J -- > Popeye, not the Sailor-man 8 Feb 2005 I have a coral beauty with pop eye. Having read up on this it seems to be an injury. He is eating well and behaving normally. <That's good news. Usually very fixable> I have read your FAQ's and just want to ask some specific questions. I do not have a separate tank and would like to treat in my main tank. It's a 55gal. I do a 20% water change every 3 weeks and my water quality is good. <Great!> In my tank I have A bubble tip Anemone, several kinds of shrimp, flame scallop live rock, yellow tang, cinn clown, damsels, several varieties of star fish hermit crabs, feather dusters, snails, clams, will the Epsom salt harm any of these??? <They shouldn't. What they might do is affect your magnesium levels with at the outside might effect your pH. Shouldn't do any of that though.> Also would I add the Epsom salt right to the tank or do I need to dissolve it first???? <I prefer to dissolve mine and add it to my sump if I'm putting it into the big tank.> Once added will it effect my Specific gravity much??? & Should I compensate for this??? <Shouldn't affect it at all. Good luck, MacL>

Queen Angel with Popeye in both eyes I have a Queen Angel about 4" in size, notice 2 weeks ago she got pop eye in one eye and couldn't see out of that side because she was running into thing on that side. After a couple days it didn't seem to get any better so we QT her in a 20 g tank, Have been treating with Maracyn Plus for that past 10 days with no results, last night I gave her a fresh water dip and the swelling seem to dissipate. But return this morning, she is breathing very heavy and is pale to the color, did a water quality test and all seems normal. I'm getting nervous because she hasn't eaten in a couple of days, I Held some seaweed right in front of her and she wouldn't touch it. Any ideas, I would hate to loose my precious Queen. Stephen Cox Crystal Marine <Whatever the cause/s, the best course of action here is to reduce the specific gravity of your water and add Epsom salt... these matters are covered on WWM re exophthalmia. Bob Fenner>

Help with Wimple, pop-eye/exophthalmia Hi Crew, <Eric> Thanks for you help in the past I've had great advice from you. My setup is a Juwel Trigon 350 with Live Rock, Polyps and the following tank mates: Atlantic Anemone Bubble Anemone Bamboo Crab Hermit Crabs (Various) Turbo Snails 2 x Cleaner Shrimp Golden Cleaner Wrasse <Am wondering what species this is> 2 x Tank bred Clowns Regal Tang Yellow Tang Wimple Fish The problem I'm having is with my Wimple, which I just put into my tank a week ago from my quarantine tank along with my regal tang. They both had white spot and were cured after a long stay in the quarantine tank. After two days I spotted a couple of white spots on the Wimple and decided to give it a fresh water dip, which helped and hasn't had a spot since. I've noticed now that his eye has swollen up and not sure what it is. <One sided? Likely resultant from a physical trauma... a bump, net whack...> I've tried to take a picture of both eyes, which I've uploaded to http://www.jooste.f2s.com/Gill.html <Good pix... left eye exophthalmia> I've tested the water and found everything to be fine other than my Nitrates at 20ppm, which I'm battling to get down, and it looks like a hint of Nitrite (testing with Salifert, which results in a very light pink). I've been dosing the tank with Amquel+, to try and get the Nitrates down, and I also use Kent ZOE, Kent Iodine, and sometimes the Kent ZooPlex. If you could please help me find out what is wrong with my Wimple and how can help him get his eye back to normal. Thank you in Advance Eric <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/popeyefaqs.htm and the linked files at top. Bob Fenner>

Eye Popped Out (5/13/05) Hello Crew,<Steve Allen with you tonight.> This is an update/question about my yellow tang with pop eye. Well I think the pop eye is cured because the eye fell out. <In the same way that amputation cures gangrene I guess.> He now has no eye in the socket. He seems to be doing fine, eating acting normally, do you think he can do well with one eye? <Yes, a one-eyed fish can survive and thrive. Zero eyes is harder. Just like people with only one kidney are strongly advised to not risk it by playing football and such, I would recommend you avoid aggressive tankmates that could go after the other one.> I took him out of quarantine after 14 days and he adjusted to the main tank fine? Anything else I could do for him? <Just take good care of him.> Thank you, Concerned Yellow Tank Dad <Sounds like he's on the mend and should be OK.>

Maroon Clown Popeye and odd behavior 7/14/05 Hello, I have two maroon clowns, one is yellow striped the other is just a regular white striped. I have them both in a ten gallon tank with live sand and about 8 lbs of live rock, along with a few various inverts. The salinity of my tank is about 1.022 and the water is changed regularly. The two clowns have been getting alone quite well, they follow each other everywhere. They also are hosting a clay pot which I placed in the aquarium. <All sounds good, but inverts generally do better at natural salinity levels (~1.025). Also, 10 gallons is quite small for a single maroon clown, let alone a pair.> The problem is that while the other clown appears to be fine, the yellow striped maroon seems to be disoriented. When and if it tries to swim, it speeds around in circles all over the tank. Most of the time however it lies on the bottom either upside-down or on its side not doing anything. It doesn't seem to be gasping for air and I can't see any visible injuries on it. I have noticed that both its eyes are severely bulged. Is there anything I can do? Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated. Thank you, Alex <Popeye is commonly caused by physical injury. A bump or a scrape can inflame the orbit causing it to bulge. However, when injury is the cause, it is usually isolated to one eye. When Popeye occurs in both eyes, it is usually an infection. I would remove the sick fish to a hospital tank. Unfortunately, the fish is probably doomed. I generally don't recommend the use of antibiotics, but in this case a broad spectrum antibiotic may be indicated. Be sure to put a small amount of household bleach into any antibiotic treated water before pouring it down the drain. This will prevent any antibiotic resistant bacteria from being released into the environment. Best Regards. AdamC.> Please Help me clarify this... Popeye, not the Sailor-Man 7/6/05 Hello! It's me again. First off, let me say thank you for all your help thus far. I know you said last time not to write to you in HTML, and I've tried my best to turn off those settings on my email (I'm a bit computer stupid) so I hope I've managed that. <I just copy and paste the view version...> Anyway, recently I've noticed my green wolf eel has a swollen eye on her left side. it's slightly blue in color. I'm not quite sure if it's pop-eye. <Mmm, this is just a descriptive term... says little to nothing re root cause/s... like you "having a bump"> I'm almost sure it's not, but I just wanted to clarify. I say that I'm almost sure because she's recently taken to swimming through this hole in one of the rocks in the tank, and the hole is only just larger than she is, so I believe she may have bumped her eye against the rock. <Quite likely> however, she's completely lost her appetite and she hasn't eaten anything in about four days, which is strange for her because she normally eat one large shrimp or a few Rosies a day. <Do go w/o food at times> so I'm not one-hundred percent sure if her swollen eye is just injury related. and if it is, will Epsom salt affect my chocolate chip starfish, <Should be fine with the Epsom> because I haven't got a hospital tank for treatments. And if she does have Pop-eye, would it be safe for me to have my eel in a bucket with some sort of filtration system for treatment? <Better to not remove the animal> by the way, water qualities are rather good. nitrates was up a bit, but I've done a 30% water change and added a bit of Amquel, so that shouldn't be a problem. thanks again! ~Jules <Bob Fenner> Popeye and snails 4/8/06 I have been looking over several of your FAQ's about Popeye. I am not sure if this is happening to my six line wrasse, so I am asking your opinion. Last night I noticed the six line's eye, only one eye, was protruding, no cloudiness. None of the other 9 fish show any signs of problems. I am sure I will not be able to catch this six line in my 90 gallon reef tank with out causing major issues and disassembling my reef tank. The six line is acting normally and eating great, what should I do? <Likely nothing> I think I should leave him alone, since it will be a major undertaking to capture him. My main concern Is there any chance it could spread? <Not much... Probably just the one fish bumped into something...> Also I read that your against populating a reef tank with crabs, blue and red legs. Will snails be sufficient? What would be the best type to use in lieu of crabs? <See WWM re: http://wetwebmedia.com/snailselfaqs.htm> Thanks for your great advice with several of my questions and issues. It has helped me stay in the hobby. Once again thank you, Dallas <Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Popeye on a YTBT, Epsom, duration 3/31/06 Hi! My name is Lisa, I have a Blue Tang with Popeye. I understand that you can treat this with Epsom Salt. How much would you put in your tank and would you have to move the charcoal from you filters? <Can leave the charcoal in place> How many times would you put Epsom Salt in your tank? How long does this take to treat? <A level tsp. per five gallons of system water, leave as long as the exophthalmia is present, replace with water changes. Bob Fenner> Popeye on Coral Beauty Angel 11/15/05 Greetings! <Salutations> Great Site!!!! <Thank you> Yesterday morning, I noticed my Coral Beauty Angel had a case of Popeye (in just one eye). As the day progressed, it became larger. Thanks to your site, I found that it must be an injury and I can treat with Epsom Salt, which I did yesterday evening @ 1 Tbsp per 5 gallons. This morning the eye looks worse yet. It's eye is very large and now because he's been flicking his eye off of the live rock, he's damaging it. <Mmmm...> Is the flicking because the Popeye is as irritating as it looks, or is there some other problem that I'm not aware of. <Hard to tell... but magnesium sulfate does take a while (a few days generally) to effect positive, visible change> Is there anything else I can do besides wait and pray for the best? Any info would be greatly appreciated Brandy Cook <If the system is otherwise stable, optimized, I would just leave the fish in it, along with the Epsom, and hope. Bob Fenner>

13 year old Foxface with Popeye 7/18/06 Hello, I have a Foxface that I have had for 13 years. He was an adult when I got him so he might be 15 plus years old. He has a case of Popeye in both eyes. <Mmm... environmental... perhaps bacterial... even might be nutritional...> Water conditions are good, only 2 other med size fish in my 75g tank and they are fine. <What are these species? Worthwhile clues> I am on my third round of Maracyn. The first two times I started treatment he would recover just enough for a few days to be able to eat, then he would lapse back and stop eating. Could this just be old age and he losing his ability to fight off infections? <Yes, definitely a possible factor> He does not seem to be responding to this last round of Maracyn (I know 3 rounds might not be good, but I did not know what else to do.) I can tell he is losing weight and I am afraid I might have to euthanize him if I think he is going to starve to death. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you, Michael Hollman <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/popeyefaqs.htm and the linked files above. Bob Fenner> Fish with Popeye not getting better 6/4/06 Hello WetWebMedia Crew, <Tammy> I am in need of help for my clownfish who suddenly had a Popeye one day. I thought it may have been caused by some trauma to his eye. I put him in a 40 gallon quarantine tank and put in approximately 1 teaspoon of Epson <Epsom, magnesium sulfate, not the printer co.> salt per gallon. Two days later his eye was growing increasing bigger. On the third day it appeared as if his eye was getting bigger by the hour. This concerned me so I tried various things, turned off air pump (heard excessive aerated water could cause Popeye), did a 25% water change, tested water (appears normal). This did not improve his eye and it was only getting bigger. I went to the fish store and they recommended antibiotics so I have been administering antibiotics for two days now (Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Inc. E.M. Tablets) 800 mg of erythromycin (200mg for every 10 gallons). <Better treated not in your main system...> The eye does not appear to be improving....it is still getting bigger. The fish is eating somewhat normally (whatever it can catch) and swimming o.k. for not being able to see that well. Is there something I am missing or should/shouldn't be doing? I am getting worried that the fish will die. Any advice/help will be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Tammy <It may be that the physical trauma has closed off a good deal of the vascular (venous) blood mechanism draining this eye. Even possible that there is now a bacterial/infectious component. I would add lowering your specific gravity here (a few thousandths) to relieve the pressure, and maintain what you are doing otherwise. Bob Fenner>

Exophthalmia, Red Bulging Eye - 05/15/2006 Hi Crew: <Hi, Eric.> This is one as stated. The fish is eating and breathing normally. I have treated pop-eyes before with ease, but this time the Vlamingi tang have his right eye first swollen, than turned red. <This is more likely to be from damage/injury than an infection, since it's only one eye.> The swelling is somewhat decrease since I increase the salinity back to tank condition 1.024 (there were infected with ich and was treated with hypocaust. In 50 gallon QT). The redness and the slight swelling is still a problem for the fish, and I have been FW dipping it daily. <Unless you absolutely must dip for some reason, I would stop dipping. I would also add Epsom salt (magnesium sulfate) to the tank at a rate of one to two tablespoons per ten gallons of aquarium water. This will help to decrease the swelling.> Last week I saw a tiny red nodule bulges out from the reddened eye membrane, and today it is still present. What can I do to lessen its pain or cure the fish??. Right now the eye is still swollen and redness is still present, with one small nodule on its popped eye. can you please suggest me your diagnostic and treatment plan? <Again, this is probably from an injury, and I would recommend to treat only with perfect water quality and Epsom salt for now.> Thank you in advance, Eric. <All the best to you, -Sabrina>

Poor Picasso Trigger with Popeye - 4/7/07 I have had a Picasso trigger for almost the last year and he has been a great little guy. His only tankmate is a clown trigger (who is rapidly growing) <Yikes... not compatible> that was purchased around the same time. Several months ago I moved them from a 46 gallon into the current 75 gallon. I have about 45 lbs of live rock and use a Fluval 404 filter with a Coralife 125 gallon super skimmer. I do weekly water changes of about 10 gallons and continually have nitrates around 15ppm. Around the time that I moved them the Picasso began to have bulgy eyes. Not just one but both so I looked up what I could find figured that it might just be poor water quality. I was doing very large weekly water changes of about 20 gallons which seemed to help. The Popeye was sporadic, some days it was there and would stay for a several and then he would be just fine for week only to have it appear again. He eats and swims just fine now. The Clown trigger has never shown any signs of Popeye, so I also don't think that it could be a water quality issue anymore. Occasionally the Picasso's colors lighten up substantially but he is usually quite dark in color and very colorful. I feed them a large assortment of foods including Clams, shrimp, squid, krill, mysis, brine, mussels, and trigger formula. I believe their diet to be fine and am glad that the Picasso eats normally. Last week I moved the Picasso into a ten gallon quarantine tank and decided to treat him with Maracyn as I believed this to be the best course of action to take. It began to look as though it was working the next day and appeared so until the last day of treatment. I woke up and his eyes were just as bulgy as before. I did further reading and decided that maybe I should be treating with Maracyn-2 as I had read that rarely do fish have gram positive bacterial infections which is what the Maracyn is supposed to treat. I have begun treating with Maracyn-2 and have noticed no results. I am almost at a loss for what to do now as this is my favorite fish and is a joy to watch everyday. Thank you for all your help. Sincerely, John C. <Mmm... well, the etiologies of such bulging can be complex... there might be an internal parasite at play here... As you relate that the Clown is not affected, I too discount the possibility of fine air-bubbles, some other physical or chemical cause here... I do encourage you to try switching (almost exclusively) to Spectrum fish food... for three reasons... One, it is nutritionally complete... two, the problem may be related to some part of the food you're currently offering, and lastly, as am hopeful this may reduce some part, extend the time till the Clown becomes overtly aggressive/territorial toward the Picasso. Bob Fenner> Re: Royal Dottyback develops Popeye in QT 5/22/07 Thanks for the prompt reply! <Welcome Michael> One thing I didn't add is that the Ich seems to be gone. <Mmm, please excuse my cynical outlook here... Almost always, unless a full course of treatment is exercised, these protozoans are just sub-symptomatic...> Even though I wasn't medicating, I was doing daily 10% water changes (first thing in the morning...yuk...coffee is better) <Heeee!> and this seemed to be working very well. The first few days I was siphoning out maybe 40-50 little 'salt' granules from that bare-bottomed tank. <Mmm, good approach... can work> Then every day it seemed like there was less and less of these granules and the tangs' skin was clearing up nicely. So much so that they seemed perfectly free of Ich. None of the other fish seemed to be affected by Ich even though I put them all in the hospital tank. I also had the UV sterilizer running in there. I only started using Lifeguard when it seemed that maybe it wasn't Ich affecting the fish anymore (they were scratching but no white spots). UV sterilizer came out. After treatment started dropping temp a tad each day...from 85 to 76; same as display tank. <Well... with the increased temperature... maybe so...> I'm really hesitant to medicate more because I had some bad experiences; <You are wise here> seems the LFS is perfectly happy selling me all these different lotions & potions that just keep me coming back for more (meds...fish...). <Ah yes... Too typical> The 'natural' approach of raising temp & 10% daily water changes appealed to me (and still does). <Me too... am in process of "curing" some goldfish (yes...) that came to me infested with ich, likely flukes... using just elevated temp. and some salt...> Since the Ich seems to be 'gone'; I WAS contemplating a return to the display tank soon but the Popeye (both eyes); even though it's only one fish out of 5; is making me postpone that. I've now put the UV sterilizer in there; have re-started daily water changes...suppose I will raise the temp back up slowly. <Mmm, yes... and I do encourage you to add a bit of Epsom Salt (see WWM re), and possibly augment the food... have you tried Spectrum fish foods? They have one, Thera...> One thing I put in the hospital tank was a little reptile cave/cove...sort of a rock sliced in half with a little entry door. I put it in to give the Dottyback a hiding spot. The fish really likes it and hides in there almost all the time...is it possible that poor water conditions could occur in an enclosed space like that and cause Popeye? <Mmm, unlikely, but possibly an influence> You say I need to define a treatment plan but at this point I'm not even really sure what I'm dealing with. My LFS is saying to treat with Greenex; or if the Ich seems gone then just put the fish back in the display tank. <Mmm... well, I WOULD execute a dilute formalin bath/dip in-transit (do see WWM re... needs to be aerated during...) while moving the fish/es back to the main tank> I think my LFS is out-to-lunch on this one; those little tangs cost me a fortune in more ways than one! Can there still be Ich present even if there are no white spots and there haven't been any for weeks? <Unfortunately yes> And if there was Ich in my HT wouldn't the tangs be the first ones to show it? <Very often yes> I'm getting really frustrated...I feel I'm 2/3 of the way to solving the problem but this Popeye is really messing me up. I'm starting to get impatient with seeing my lovely fish squished into a 10-gal tank with ghastly incandescent lighting. I want them back in my 55 ASAP but I only want to do that when it's clear that they are cured. They say that caution is the distillation of experience; <Can be... in fortuitous circumstances, choosings> well you can bet that a QT is something I'll always own and use. Unless I get fed up and make terrariums out of my aquariums. Mike. <Yikes... no threats please! BobF>

Sick Polymnus Clownfish 4/17/05 I purchased a mated pair of Saddleback (Polymnus) clownfish about 3 weeks ago. When I first placed them into my 12 gallon QT tank, they seemed very healthy and readily accepted foods including Mysis soaked in vitamins, Cyclop-Eeze and small pellets. However, after two weeks or so, I began to notice some odd behavior in the female (who is about 3x larger than her mate). She seemed very lethargic, mostly swimming near the bottom of the tank without the usual bobbing motion associated with her species. Once in a while, I noticed she would just swim from one end of the tank to the other, sometimes gently bumping into the tank wall before reversing direction. She also stopped eating, but exhibited no signs of parasites or other diseases. The male remains very healthy. <A. polymnus aren't the hardiest of clowns and often fail to acclimate to captivity. The black variant seems to do somewhat better. If these are wild caught specimens, I would suggest that you research and rule out Brooklynella (usually indicated by thick cloudy mucous on skin). If it is Brooklynella, both clowns must be moved to a hospital tank and must be treated with Formalin baths.> A couple days ago, I moved the pair into the 60gal reef tank, hoping that a larger tank would perk her up. After several hours, the pair began hosting in my LTA anemone. At first I thought the female had perked up, but it has been two days now and she is still not eating (it's been about a week total since she stopped eating). This morning I discovered that one eye is beginning to bulge out, looks like early stages of Popeye however the eye is not cloudy. There is a small hippo tang in the tank which is perfectly happy and only occasionally hangs around the clownfish and their anemone although I've seen no biting. <"Pop Eye", especially when only one eye is affected is most often caused by physical injury. However, in her outstanding book on Clownfishes, Joyce Wilkerson describes a very rare fungal disease that often causes pop-eye and the other signs you have described. There is no certain way to diagnose it while the fish is still alive, but she suggests that it can be treated by soaking food in 1% phenoxyethanol I don't have a brand name to recommend, but it will be marketed as an anti-fungal medication (don't substitute!).> What do you suggest I do? Is her strange behavior just a result of the Popeye she is developing or is there a bigger issue likely involved? Should I move the female (or both) back to the QT tank? Should I treat with Epsom salts or Maracyn as you sometimes suggest? Thanks for your help. You guys perform a wonderful service! Saahil. <I would not move the fish again. The other fish have already been exposed to the problem and further stress and physical contact with the injured eye could be quite harmful. If the fish is not eating, there is no way to get phenoxyethanol into the fish (adding to the water is ineffective), so you will have to offer tempting foods and wait it out. Best Regards. AdamC.>

Pop-eye with Pseudanthias lori? Hi Bob, Please help! I purchased a seemingly healthy Pseudanthias lori (approx. 3.5" from end to end) 5 days ago for my reef tank. I floated it in the bag for about 15 minutes, and then acclimated it for about 30 minutes by taking a cup of tank water and putting it into a bucket that the P. lori was in. After the volume in the bucket doubled, I netted the fish out and placed it in my reef tank. As soon as I placed it in the tank, it sank to the bottom of the tank and remained there breathing very heavily. It didn't move from its spot for the remainder of the day. I turned off all of the lights just to make sure it wouldn't get more stressed. I saw it later that night and it was still breathing very heavily. <Hmm, here's the brief citation off of the site: www.wetwebmedia.com: Pseudanthias lori (Lubbock & Randall 1976), Lori's Anthias. To five inches in length. Indo-Pacific. Best kept in a small group, as they are here at a marine livestock wholesale operation. Do only do well in groups...> I didn't see it again 'til today (5 days later) and I noticed that both of its eyes are huge. It almost looks like a bubble-eye goldfish with the eyes bulging out. He doesn't seem like he can see very well (if at all) and he's just sort of swimming along the sand at the bottom of the tank (probably 'cause he can't see). <Yes, likely> What should I do? Do you know if this will be permanent damage to his eyes, and if so, how will he be able to survive with 2 bad eyes? :( Thanks for your time, Thomas Tank specs: 120g reef tank with 40g sump DAS protein skimmer calcium reactor 150W HQI Metal Halides Primarily SPS tank Tank has been setup for approximately 3.5 months w/explosive SPS growth Parameters: 1.025 specific gravity nitrates are undetectable temp: 72-78F pH: 8.1-8.3 Other Fish: 1 x Pseudochromis fridmani (2.5") 5 x Pink Chromis (3") 4 x Green Chromis (1") <At this point... I would likely leave this specimen where it is and just hope for the best... moving it will only increase stress and hasten its demise... Going forward, if I were interested in most any of the Anthiines, I would buy them in a small group, avoid netting them in the acclimation process (just freshwater, pH adjusted, dip them in the bag... on the way into the main tank... No "treatments" or additions to food, the water are recommended... "it doesn't look good" for this specimen, but "you can never tell" and it may rally of its own accord. Bob Fenner, who encourages to scan over the WWM site for more on livestock selection, this group, pop-eye.>

Re: Pop-eye with Pseudanthias lori? Thanks Bob! Could this have been caused by stress? <Pretty general term... and yes. But more likely due to physical trauma... rubbing of the animal's eyes somehow> Some people are speculating that I may have a supersaturated O2 condition in my tank, but from what I remember in all of my chemistry classes, under "normal" conditions, it's pretty hard to get anything supersaturated (and also, the other fish all seem to be fine). <Agreed... and all your other fishes would show signs... not likely> Thanks again for the quick reply and the info.! Thomas <Anytime, my friend in fish. Do read over the www.wetwebmedia.com site re Pop-eye/exophthalmia, and environmental disease pieces and FAQs files. Bob Fenner>

Maroon clown with bulging eye Hi Bob, How's it going? <Fine> Unfortunately I'm having a bit of a problem with my large female maroon clown that I've had for about five years. I recently added a small maroon (about 2 inches) to this 100 gallon ecosystem tank and they adapted to each other immediately. I have had the small one for about 3 weeks with no signs of disease whatsoever. The fish have all been extremely healthy in this system and in all of the other systems I've seen set up with this system much as the company claims. The other day I noticed that a yellow-eye tang that I've had for about a year had disappeared and at the same time my large maroon clown had a large bulging eye. <Disconcerting to say the least...> I left her in the tank untreated for about 3 days thinking it might get better naturally. Unfortunately this hasn't been the case and although the fish looks very healthy it still has the bulging eye (I assume it is definitely an injury since it isn't hazy at all). <If unilateral/one-sided this is likely the case... and I would have done what you did... and still would... not move, treat... Try feeding vitamin soaked foods for a bit...> Today I moved her to a quarantine and treated her with Maracyn 2. Is this going to help or should I have just left her in the tank. Have you seen fish recover from this? Thanks Mike <Have seen recovery many times... Would re-place the female in the main tank... try the Selcon et al. soaked prep. Resolution here may take weeks... Bob Fenner>

Porcupine puffer with a swollen eye I wonder if you can help, I recently acquired a Porcupine puffer about 3 inches in length. he currently shares a 180L tank with a small Volitans, a 3 inch Clown Trigger fish, a 5 inch Pink tail trigger, a Powder Blue Tang, and an Imperator Angel. All the water parameters are in very good shape, but about 1 week after being added to my tank, he suddenly developed a very, very swollen eye. The eye enlarged in the space of an hour just after feeding. It's now about 3 weeks later and the situation has worsened, the swelling is massive and looks very uncomfortable, a significant amount of air is clearly visible behind the eye cover and in front of the eye itself. The poor creatures buoyancy is clearly affected yet he feeds enthusiastically. have you ever experienced anything like this before? <Yes... first hand and otherwise. Popeye, aka exophthalmia is a condition... that has several etymologies/causes... If it's one-sided typically this is resultant from a mechanical injury... a bump in the night or some other organism bruising the animal... likely one of your triggers or the Angel...> do you know of any treatments? <For advanced cases like this? Best to just "wait, hope, see" what happens... Please see the "Popeye" and related sections on our site: www.WetWebMedia.com for more here> Thanks in advance for your help, I've been very impressed with the words of wisdom you have offered others Regards, Ian <Thank you for your kind words... don't know about wisdom, but collective experience, yes. Bob Fenner>

Re: Porcupine puffer with a swollen eye Thanks for the speedy reply Bob, just a quick update, last night the eye deflated substantially. (Ah, good) It's now about the same size as the good eye but looks a real mess (very opaque and the eye cover surface is rough and flaky). As for the porky himself, well he seems very busy and active (getting on the nerves of the Pink Tail seems to be his favourite pass time!!!) (Also good) Thanks again for the help, I'm just about to move all my guys into a 190 gallon (UK gallons) system and build a 90 gallon reef system, so I'm sure I'll be in touch again if that's ok (Absolutely my friend. Bob Fenner) Cheers from the UK Ian

Pop eye tang Help please, I am a relatively new comer to the marine aquarium hobby, however I have kept fresh water fish for many years. I have had my 75 gal. marine tank for almost a year with only one loss to date that being a juv. black angel fish who just wasn't healthy from the beginning. Recently there was what I assumed to be a parasitic outbreak in my tank. My yellow tang had black spots on it, my domino damsel and regal tang had what I assumed to be Ich, my other fish seemed to be healthy. None of the effected fish ever stopped eating. I have great fear of treating with copper because of its toxicity, which would mean immediate death to my inverts, and do not have the space for a quarantine tank. <Really?> All available space taken up by my other (5) fresh water tanks. My course of treatment was as followed, large water change, 30 gal., followed by freshwater baths for the effected fish. Then I removed the activated charcoal from filter and have been treating the tank with a reef safe product called Chem-Marin stop parasites because of the invert and live rock population. The yellow tang and domino damsel showed immediate results following the fresh water bath. However the regal tang's ich seems to have been replaced with what appears to pop eye. <More like "supplemented" or "joined" than replaced> I'm not sure what caused the pop-eye which isn't as bad as the pictures on your web site, more of a clouding of the eye. <Yes... do supply obtuse examples as illustrations... do think the cloudiness is related to the health, current situation of your system> The pop-eye section appears to be missing from your web site. <Not placed yet. Thanks for this reminder...> What should be my continued course of action be? Should I stop the treatments, add an antibiotic, or continue for the recommended five days? Water conditions were tested today and found to be optimal, corals and inverts are all fine with no harmful effects from the treatment. <Hmm, because... there has been no real treatment... what has likely gone on is the parasites are in a collective in-between population boom phase... You'll see in a few days... See my notes below> My setup is quite simple, I run an aqua clear 500 filter, a protein skimmer and three power heads to move the water around. The only other thing in the tank is a bubble wall which is on the side opposite the intake for the filter. When the treatment is over should I replace the charcoal and the sponge portions of the filter, or can I replace the old charcoal portion which was only three days old when the outbreak occurred, the sponge portion was left in during the treatment. Will my nitrifying bacteria survive the treatment or do I start over? Also I have seen much mention of your book, I would like to know the title and where it is available (Amazon?). <Hmm, probably "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist", Amazon does sell this and another title of mine... But back to your diseased system (not just the fish hosts)... I would go the entire route of using one of your freshwater tanks... yes, a lot of work, but necessary... to move the marine fishes to (alternatively, the non-fish livestock could be moved, but I wouldn't do this here)... and lower the spg, elevate temp. as stated in numerous places on the WWM site... and, yes, use a copper based medication, test kit for two weeks as also stated on WWM under "Copper Use", "Marine Parasitic Disease"... and not return the fishes to the main tank for at least a month... better two... and adhere to a strict dip/bath protocol for acclimation henceforth at least... if not use a quarantine tank... Bob Fenner>

Fish eye injury I have a lion fish that has stopped eating and looks like it has a scrape off scale mark on one side if its body and one gray smoky eye that is extremely enlarged. What is wrong and what can I do about it? <exophthalmia... (Popeye) likely caused by being spooked/frightened into the rock or glass. May require antibiotics, do use some Epsom Salt (from the pharmacy is fine) at 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons one time. Prepare to medicate in a QT tank if swelling doesn't subside within three days. Review medication procedures for exophthalmia in the disease section here on WWM. Don't worry about the lack of feeding...they can go for weeks without food. Best regards, Anthony> Thank You, R.Doughten

Pop-eye Hi, My Banggai cardinal has a rather bad case of pop-eye. Being that he is in my 80 gal. reef and almost impossible to catch, what are my choices? Is this disease a symptom of something worse to come? <if it is one eye only, there is a good chance that it swelled from a mechanical insult (bump, startle, spook in to the glass rock, etc). It may go down on its own, but is just as likely to turn into a bacterial infection. Still not really contagious (unless tank conditions overall are poor/organic rich...lack of water changes, poor protein skimming, overfeeding, etc). My advice is to add a one time dose of Epsom salt (from the pharmacy) at one Tablespoon per 10 gallons. It is reef safe and helps to purge the fluid from behind the eye. This magnesium sulfate is commonly found in fish food and sea salt. Completely safe... just don't abuse it. Else, medication in a hospital tank may be necessary. Many tricks to easily catch this fish (some recent ones shared in the archives). Best regards, Anthony>

Tang Compatibility Anthony... Just so I am clear...if I decide to use the Mag Sulfate for the Popeye, would it be best to add via the sump or directly to the tank or it really does not matter? <good question... when in doubt (and most often), dissolve an additive or salt (as in this case) in some aquarium water and add to a strong stream of water. The sump would be a fine place to mix the mag sulfate in slowly> "Humour" with a "u"? <GRIN> Thanks, Mitch <hehe... in better, humour :) ...Anthony>

Popeye in Mombassa lionfish Hi Bob, I work at a fish store in Virginia and was lucky enough to find a rare Pterois mombassae mis-labeled as a miles lionfish. He has been at the store for several months now and I have been setting up a 30 long for him at my house. <wow... a small and rather temporary housing for this rare find> He had the most spectacular huge green eyes, the giveaway that he was a Mombassa and not a antennata. He is housed in a FO centralized system of about 1000 gallons made up of about twelve 75 gallon tanks. We have a large wet dry filter, large skimmer, numerous UV sterilizers and a large sand filter. His tankmates are a clown trigger, a large lunar wrasse and up until recently a show size Rock Beauty angel. The angel died of a combination of Popeye and some other skin disorder (white film on skin). Now the lion's beautiful green eyes are cloudy and swollen-- one more so than the other. Is Popeye contagious? <exophthalmia (Popeye) is rarely contagious but rather an expression of degraded water quality and/or a bacterial infection. Do consider treatment in isolation with Epsom salt (1 TBN per 5 gallons) and a broad spectrum antibiotic (no Maracyn products please for this)> Immediately after the angels death we did a massive water change on the system. After consulting with my boss, who has been in saltwater for over 10 years, I have been bucket treating the lion with Kanamycin. I fill up a 5 gallon bucket with system water, then add an airstone and pump, dose one whole teaspoon of Kanamycin and add the lionfish. I do this during the time I work, usually 6-12 hours almost every day. I have restricted the feeding of the lion so that only I do it-- last thing he needs is to be overfed. We feed nutrient soaked krill, shrimp and big silversides. What is your opinion of this treatment? Any changes? Suggestions? <as above, my friend. Perhaps Furazolidone and Nitrofurazone for antibiotics used together> I really do not want to lose this lion, he is a gem and is my favorite fish. Thanks for your help, Andrew <best regards, Anthony>

I Yam what I Yam...so sayeth the POPEYE Greetings Mr. Fenner and crew.... <ahhh... crew member Anthony Calfo here... AKA Antoine... AKA the Marine Nazi... AKA Joey Bag O' Donuts... and once, only once... AKA Shirley> I've got a habit of purchasing the LFS misfits and trying to save them... <do you mean badly behaved store employees? That is cool. I want my own indentured slaves too.> examples are dying/receding brain coral, hammer coral, frogspawn coral, bubble coral, fox coral, and Candycane corals...They are all doing well now...some for more than 2 years. <I am very glad and grateful to hear of your service and empathy. For the benefit of others reading this... do you notice that every one of the corals that you named were Large Polyped Stony corals (LPS)? This is so common and the reason why we strongly recommend that beginners leave hard corals in the stores for at least a year or more until they become more experienced. LPS can be hardy but are easily damaged. Kudos to you again for offering to save them> But I digress :-) Just today I purchased a potters angel to add to my main tank. I got a steal because it has a damaged eye. I've been watching this fish for a while, and it looked like Popeye, but the swelling had reduced and it is really nice and chunky so I bought it for half price. <the eye is nice and chunky? Hmm... I'm seeing a pattern of misplaced modifiers here or you are one really strange dude <G>> The eye is still whitish, and has a thin film hanging from it, but it looks like the membrane from the swollen period so I wasn't concerned with that. <sure.... its just a hanging membrane from an eyeball. What's to worry about?!> After acclimating it for appx. 60 minutes (floating and introducing tank water slowly) I released it into my 15g tank (used to QT all new fish before into to the main tank). <very wise with the QT my friend. Thank you!!! Surely one of the ingredients to your success> The fish appears normal, but the eye seems to have begun swelling again. It looks like it is beginning to slowly bulge from the socket. Could this be from a difference in salinity? <not at all... there is a relapse in the Popeye and the chance of it being a bacterial infection the second time around are quite good. Medicate promptly with a Nitrofurazone and Furazolidone cocktail (like double strength "Fungus Eliminator" from jungle brand. Also add 1 TBN of Epsom salt per 5 gallons. Do this 3 times in 5 days and conduct small daily water changes. No carbon of course> My water params are: no2 = 0 no3 = 0 amm = 0 ph = 8.3 alk = 9 dKH CA = 400 Temp = 79F <all fine> I don't like to use any meds for treatment, and in fact this QT is actually a coral propping tank for me so....any suggestions other than patience? <I don't like meds either if not necessary but this is a must. Rest assured than Furan drugs are effective in solution less than 6 hours> Personally I have had one eyed fish before, and it doesn't bother ME...but I'd hate to be able to do something and not because I didn't know. By the way...I did look over the FAQ on this subject, and wasn't going to email but it seems to be getting worse over the last several hours. <agreed and thank you> Thanks in advance for your assistance. By the way...I was ticked because you (Bob) came to my local reefers club in Sacramento in June but that was the ONE meeting I couldn't make it to. It was my anniversary and the wifey wanted to go to Reno...bummer. <you missed a two fer... I visited too :) from Pittsburgh. You could have enjoyed my wise cracks in person :p I hope you had a lovely anniversary.> Jason <with kind regards, Anthony>

Re: Popeye and Bullies Hi Bob /Anthony, <cheers, mate> One last question regarding pop-eye (I promise). <no worries> The swelling in my CB eye has gone down (thanks to Anthony's suggestion to use Epsom salt) to about normal but the white semi-opaque covering over his eye is still there. <quite normal in some cases depending upon the degree of distension before it was remedied> He is also quite blind in that eye (temporary ? enduring ?...I hope not). <eye injuries are slow to heal... some fishes appear blind in that eye for many months before full recovery is realized. Still... blindness is possible> I read on the Web that someone was using Mercurochrome (spelling ?) as an antiseptic for fungal and bacterial infections including eye infections and pop-eye for marine fish. <such topical swab can be effective BUT are NEVER to be applied to eye or gill tissue> He mentioned that you need to net the fish, quickly apply the stuff topically without getting it all over the place (i.e., NOT in the net on the gills or in the water !) and then return fish to tank. <still not on the eyes... and no hurry to work either. Fishes can be out of water for a minute of two easily which is likely 60-90 seconds longer than it takes to swap skin or trim a wound). Just cover the fish (keep dark) with a clean towel that has been wet with aquarium water (have a helper trickle saltwater over the gills through the towel if you like) and only uncover the small section of the fish that will be worked on. The fish should of course be held in QT after procedure> Is this at all effective, safe, viable etc. ? <topicals when appropriate are very effective for skin infections... not the case here> Thanks again, Chuck Spyropulos <best regards, Anthony>

Popeye maroon clown Hi Bob, <Steven Pro this morning.> I just spent the last 20 minutes perusing the e-mails on the FAQ-Popeye site-very helpful, but I still have a question. I have a maroon clown that I've had for 9 years-he had been in a 10 gallon (believe it or not) the entire time until July when I upgraded to a 55. I elevated the salt level (from like 22 to 25ish) per recommendation of a local dealer to help the new fish (Sp. hog and a wrasse, both fine) accommodate. Since then, I've had some parasite problems (which are now under control) and suddenly my clown had a cloudy eye (just one). The same dealer recommended furan in a QT tank (I'm using a 2 gallon bucket). I did so, but after 2 days the eye began to pop. He then said furan is no good for Popeye and that I should switch to EM. The fish has now undergone his fourth treatment of EM, and has been in QT for 8 days. The eye has not gone down, but he seems okay otherwise. Should I try Epsom salt as you so often recommended to others? <Yes, I would.> Should I just return him to the tank with the popped eye? <No> Will the pop eye kill him? <Not directly, but your fish could lose the eye and then succumb to a secondary infection.> Also, is there a chance that this all resulted from the salt change? <No> I'm since converting it back to 22. <I would keep at NSW concentration. -Steven Pro>

Flame Angel QT decision Hi Bob: <Hello Jim, I'm just a doctor! Oh, sorry, an old trekkie> Wanted to write again with a progress report on the Flame. After reading your response, I decided to try Furan-2 and Epsom salts (1 tbsp per 10 gallon) -- one, because I figured if she had to sit in QT another 3 days she might as well get antibiotics to be on the safe side, and two, for my own personal education. At any rate, she just completed her 15th day of QT, 48th hour of Furan-2, and 24th hour of MgSO4. Interestingly enough, her eye now looks worse rather than better! It definitely appears to be Popeye, but I don't understand how the condition can look worse. All of her other activity is good -- she's eating well, has typical behavior for a Centropyge, has vibrant color, and her feces is normal-colored although it has become somewhat stringy since starting the MgSO4, which I'm guessing is to be expected. <Yes> The directions on my Furan-2 box by Aquarium Pharmaceuticals states that it is a 4-day regime, not a 5-day as posted several places throughout your website for Furan-based drugs. The antibiotic has a 03/2004 expiration date, and consists of 60 mg Nitrofurazone, 25 mg Furazolidone, and 2 mg (just a touch) of Methylene Blue per 10 gallons. I would greatly appreciate some more hand-holding here from you to help her through this. I don't see her having a full recovery over the next 48 hours from the remaining two doses of Furan-2 based on how she looks now, but I could be wrong as I have no experience with Popeye. Should I follow through with a second round of antibiotics, or a FW dip with Methylene blue and follow with placement in the main tank? <I would do the latter, hope for a self-cure> Any explanation on why her eye looks worse now than better in this situation? I did a 40-50% water change 48 hours ago before starting the Furan-2, so water quality is okay. <No idea. Depends on the root cause of the eye trouble... if it wasn't bacterial in origin, the treatment might not have done much good...> Thanks for all of your help and a great website. You have done immeasurable good and saved a lot of fishes' lives and the ocean's reefs too by discouraging people from buying inappropriate species. I look forward to the day when Flame Angels are routinely farm-raised, which I understand is fast approaching. <Yes> Happy Holidays, Jim <Be chatting, Bob Fenner>

Clown fish with red bulging eye 11/6/05 I've searched the site and can't seem to find a similar case. I have a pair of true perculas that have been in my 90 gallon reef tank for over a year. The female's left eye has all of a sudden turned red and begun to bulge She doesn't seem to be eating either. Any ideas as to what it could be from or if I need to quarantine her? Any ideas greatly appreciated. Thanks. <Is likely "unilateral exophthalmia" as a description... and likely due (originally) to a physical trauma (bumping into something)> P.S. Now it seems that my other fish (presumably my tangs) have started picking on her. She has some bites out of her tail and fin. <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/popeyefaqs.htm and #2 linked file above. 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: