Please visit our Sponsors
FAQs on the Rainbowfishes Health/Disease 3

Related Articles: Rainbowfishes, Fishes at the rainbow's end; An introduction to the Atheriniformes, the Rainbowfish and silversides by Neale Monks

Related FAQs: Rainbow Disease 1, Rainbow Disease 2Rainbow Disease 4, Rainbowfishes 1, Rainbowfishes 2, & FAQs on: Rainbow Identification, Rainbow Behavior, Rainbow Compatibility, Rainbow Selection, Rainbow Systems, Rainbow Feeding, Rainbow Disease, Rainbow Reproduction,


Pseudomugil luminatus (C.f. Paksai) quarantine issues     8/27/17
Tank setup is a 10G for breeding and a 5.5 for quarantine. The 10 is heavily planted and has 4 species of moss, runs sponge and bio wheel and has been established around a year. Ph is 7 +- .2. I run liquid ferts and co2 for the plants parameters are good otherwise 0 nh, no2, and no3 TDS is 275 no fluctuations really at all temp 76. Breeder is stocked with 2 males and 4 females, they share with a Crowntail Betta and a cherry shrimp colony. I have 2 other males in a 40 G community nano tank waiting for their females to arrive. Problem occurs when I get in new stock. 3 orders now, within 48 hours of arrival I lose 50%~ of the stock and cant figure the why especially when I get in other Pseudomugils (I currently also have Furcatus and Gertrudea) and they have 90-100% survival.
<Very disturbing. The first thing is to see how similar your water is to the retailer/shipper. Set up a quarantine tank with essentially identical water chemistry and temperature. I will note that Pseudomugil species may often be found across a broad range of habitats, but particular populations may come from places with quite specific water chemistry. So a given species might be found in rivers, slightly brackish swamps, or blackwater streams -- and the preferences for a given breeding population would reflect the conditions they were originally collected from (or their
parents, anyway). So check with the breeder or shipper, and act accordingly. Once the fish are settled and surviving, you can then think about adapting some/all of them to your main tank chemistry parameters, presumably over the longest practical time-frame.>
The Q tank takes water directly from the 10G daily through WC along with aged water from my holding tank it has floating plants and 2 sponge filters, it runs 0 nh, 0 no2, and maybe 10 no3 ph again is right around 7 and TDS is steady 275. The only symptoms I can really see is that a few hours before passing they start to hover at the surface and stop eating, I feed quarantine the same as the 10, crushed flake and baby brine if I have any.
<Does sound like stress.>
They will eat up until a few hours before passing just fine but then stop accepting and just hover. Pseudomugils will spar for dominance and that seems to be my culprit due to the other physical sign I see on the dead fish which is small bite marks about the belly. I have yet to witness the actual biting though so I am still unsure and I am definitely unsure how to stop it. Once past the 48 hour mark they have a 90% survival rate and seem to do well but I have battled this issue for the better part of a year now.
Once in my display tanks they thrive and are breeding currently.
<Sounds great!>
I am getting these fish in from wholesalers via my LFS at $15 usd a pop. I cannot in good conscience order a 4th batch until I have my mortality issue figured.
<Other than water chemistry changes, do also run a copper test kit on your water in case there's some copper in your plumbing that's shocking the fish. Shouldn't be an issue with RO or rainwater, but certainly a risk with
tap water. Do the surviving specimens give any clues, such as evidence of Velvet or Whitespot?>
Any experiences or help here would be greatly appreciated. I keep heavily planted and stocked tanks with little to no mortality because I watch parameters closely and use quarantine as a tool but my tool is failing me at the moment. HALP!
<Hope this helps, Neale.>

Rainbowfish disease     8/11/17
Read a post on your website by bob Fenner referring to the treatment of 'Rainbowfish disease'
In 1996 I submitted article to FAMA using Ceftin to treat this disease
It is 21 years later. I still keep rainbows
The treatment of choice is Kanamycin
Disease is gram negative Aeromonas or Aerobactor
Don't have any way to let bob Fenner or others know this
Perhaps you can pass on info
Anyone can contact me for details
Harvey Hammer, M.D.
<Thank you for sharing Harvey. Will post, Bob Fenner>
Subject: Rainbowfish disease    8/11/17

Inclusive of your email. B

Rainbowfish with fuzzy lips...      1/28/17
Hi guys, hope all is well. I have an issue with my Marcii rainbows and I've spent countless hours searching WWM and other sites and can't really find an answer. 2 or 3 of them have a sort of white patch on their upper lip sometimes the bottom. Its not Columnaris because they've always had it to a certain extent for the year I've had them. My water parameters are good, I do bi-weekly pwc and they are in with emerald Corys and Glowlight tetras. I also always use the same gravel vac, nets, etc. between all of my tanks and never seen it anywhere but on these 3 fish. There are 8 other
Marcii's in the same tank that don't get it. There is no odd behavior from these fish, they eat normally. Sometimes the white patch looks like it has a little string or tuft floating off. There is no gill irritation, no spots or ulcers on their bodies, they are just healthy looking and acting fish. I'm not sure what to make of it. I was in the process of rehoming
them but the guy didn't want to take them because he was sure it was Columnaris and wouldn't believe they've been that way pretty much since I got them. Im attaching photos. Can you offer me any suggestions? I prefer not to use medications, but I will if you think its important for the health of the fish. Thanks.
<I'm fairly certain this is physical damage, and the white tissue that comes and goes is simply dead skin sloughing away. The question now is how they get damaged. One explanation is fighting. Rainbows normally fighting by swooshing water at each other while lining up side to side, but if they're snapping at each other or wrestling with their jaws, then their
mouths might be damaged. Alternatively, they're ramming into something, and precisely this sort of damage is seen on active or nervous fish when kept in glass boxes. A lot depends on the size of the tank, how clearly defined the edges of the tank are with rocks or plants, and how often the fish get spooked. The famous situation is the lights suddenly coming on in the morning. Old school fishkeepers recommend turning the room lights on first, then after a certain period of time, say 10 minutes, turning the tank lights on. Make sense? Do the reverse when turning the lights off.
Aggressive or nippy fish can cause the same fright reaction, and in turn the same trauma damage. Hope this helps, Neale.>
Re: Rainbowfish with fuzzy lips...      1/28/17

Thanks Neale! All of that makes absolute perfect sense and is completely right on. There are 11 of them in a 55gal with both ends pretty much uncovered. I just recently trimmed back 2 massive Amazon swords. They never lock lips but they are very active eaters so maybe some bumping into things. Although they aren't timid around me, I do get lazy with the
lights. I'll work on that. Thanks again, you guys are the best!
<Glad to have helped, and good luck! Neale.>

Rainbowfish; sick
My Australian rainbow fish have large white bumps or clumps on fins. Fin is almost gone. One fish with the worst bumps now swimming vertical most of the time. Not sure what it is.
<Mmm; a few possibilities; none of them "good". "Micro" Sporidean likely... an as yet incurable protozoan issue. Rainbows and a few other groups of fishes are especially susceptible... CAN only be avoided; by "good genetic background", suitable environment, "good nutrition. I would destroy/euthanize this specimen... NOT allow it at least to be housed with other Melanotaeniids. Please see Neale's piece here on WWM:
Bob Fenner>

Dwarf Rainbowfish wart     9/25/16
Hello, crew, I hope you are doing well.
<Thank you Robert>
Along with this email I have included three pictures of a female (?) dwarf Rainbowfish with a strange growth on its side. It started as a small red point a few days ago and has growth about 4x since then and also has a small white patch in the center (not very visible in the pics). at the other side, it has a small white growth which makes me believe it is some kind of worm... while the other wart-like growth reminds me of having read of Lymphocystis... The fish is 1.5 years old (or at least the times its been with me).
I hope you can help me identify this problem. The fish is eating and its behavior doesn't seem to have changed at all.
<Have encountered similar growths on Rainbows over the years; mostly anomalous as to cause/etiology. Many times rapid onset; with the loss of the specimen. Melanotaeniids appear/are more sensitive to environmental stressors that many other families of freshwater fishes.>
Tank is a 150 gal community, ph of 7.4, dGH of 10 and dKH of 9. Temp is 28 C. Tested for nitrogen, readings are 0,0,0 (heavily planted tank, high tech.. no water dosing only substrate so the tank stays pretty much nitrate free).
Thank you, for your time. I hope you can help me. I have isolated her to a 5 gal with cycled filter media, temp is 25 C, dGH and dKH are the same, but ph is 7.9 (the high tech has co2 injection, which reduces the ph a bit).
<I would remove this one individual, treat elsewhere... with? Perhaps an Anthelminthic like Prazi... but also w/ Metronidazole/Flagyl, per the S.O.P. archived on WWM. IF the specimen perishes, I'd preserve it, or seek out help in dissecting it to try and disclose the issue here. 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: