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FAQs on Marine Ich, White Spot, Cryptocaryoniasis 20

Related Articles: Marine Ich: Fighting The War On Two Fronts, Cryptocaryoniasis, Parasitic DiseaseQuarantine, Quarantine of Marine Fishes

Related FAQs: Best Crypt FAQs, Crypt FAQs 1, Crypt FAQs 2, Crypt FAQs 3, Crypt FAQs 4, Crypt FAQs 5, Crypt FAQs 6, Crypt FAQs 7, Crypt FAQs 8, Crypt FAQs 9, Crypt FAQs 10, Crypt FAQs 11, Crypt FAQs 12, Crypt FAQs 13, Crypt FAQs 14, Crypt FAQs 15, Crypt FAQs 16, Crypt FAQs 17, Crypt FAQs 18, Crypt FAQs 19, Crypt FAQs 21, Crypt FAQs 22, Crypt FAQs 23, Crypt FAQs 24, Crypt FAQs 25, Crypt FAQs 26, Crypt FAQs 27, Crypt 28, Crypt 29, Crypt 30, Crypt 31, Crypt 32, Crypt 33, Crypt 34, & FAQs on Crypt: Identification, Prevention, "Causes", Phony Cures That Don't Work, Cures That Do Work,  Products That Work By Name: Free Copper/Cupric Ion Compounds (e.g. SeaCure), Chelated Coppers (e.g. Copper Power, ), Formalin Containing: (e.g. Quick Cure),  About: Hyposalinity & Ich, Treating for Crypt & Sensitive Fishes:  By Fish Group: Sharks/Rays, Morays and other Eels, Mandarins/Blennies/Gobies, Wrasses, Angels and ButterflyfishesTangs/Rabbitfishes, Puffers & Kin...  &  Marine Parasitic Disease, Parasitic Marine Tanks, Parasitic Reef Tanks, Marine Velvet Disease, Biological Cleaners, Treating Parasitic Disease, Using Hyposalinity to Treat Parasitic Disease, Best Quarantine FAQs, Quarantine 1, Quarantine 2, Quarantine 3, Quarantine 4Quarantine 5Quarantine 6Quarantine 7Quarantine 8Quarantine 9Quarantine 10Quarantine 11, Quarantine 12, Quarantining Invertebrates

Would'a, Could'a, Should'a quarantined!

Ich and Quarantine (the next Tarantino film) 10/7/05 Hi <<Hi.>> Yesterday my sixline wrasse had two white specs on it. I removed all three fish to quarantine tanks last night assuming they were all infected. <<A partially correct assumption, and likely what I may have done in the same situation. Sixlines, in my own experience, are not very susceptible to C. irritans, but such a small fish can be overwhelmed easily.>> No other fish were displaying symptoms. <<As you've probably surmised, they don't need to be displaying symptoms to be under attack.>> My question is since the severity of this ich outbreak is so small how long do I have to keep my display tank fallow? I have read on your web site a minimum of six weeks, but with my quick action I am hoping to only leave the tank fallow for 2-4 weeks. <<The reason for this length of time fallowing is because of the life-cycle and lifespan of the protozoa in question. This can be speeded up by raising the tank temperature.>> My problem with leaving the display tank empty for 6 weeks is my yellow tang, which is 4-5 inches long really pollutes the water fast. <<Ah, indeed. Yet that's the fish most likely to completely succumb. Have you considered going with large tubs or trash cans? I, and others, have posted on this sort of "tank-in-a-pinch" methodology. Also, lowering the salinity is helpful in ensuring better O2 saturation. Again, search via our Google bar, on hyposalinity.>> I had a really hard time keeping the yellow tang in the initial quarantine period and had to move her to the display tank a few days early when she was first introduced. The wrasse and the damsel are receiving a copper treatment, but I would rather not treat the yellow tang with copper so I could place a piece of live rock in the quarantine tank and help with biological filtration, or should I just treat the tank with copper? <<My personal preference is to start with hyposalinity. However, I've not had problems treating most tangs (especially Z. flavescens) with copper, either. Again, consider hitting one of the "Marts" (Wal, K) and getting a larger plastic tub for her. 30-40 gallons should allow enough room for swimming, etc.>> Also, would it be safe to take a piece of live rock from the infected tank and place it in the quarantine tank without copper, or would it be best to go buy a new piece of live rock from the LFS to place in the quarantine tank? <<Don't transfer any live/porous material into Q/T. That will just transfer the disease. Also, if you're treating with copper, it's pointless to put *any* live rock in there, as it will quickly become both dead and saturated with copper. Just don't put anything porous in a tank that's being treated with copper. Again, do use our Google bar, as you'll find a WHOLE lot of information previously posted - more than I could add here.>> This is my first experience with a disease, so any help would be appreciated. Thanks for everything, Jed <<You're welcome. You've acted and read, now just read some more and see about getting the tang some larger temporary digs. Marina>> 

Counterattack on Ich-A Conscientious Aquarist Goes To Battle!  10/5/05 Aloha from Honolulu! <Howzit? Scott F. here today!> Thank you for being such a great source of information. I wish I had discovered your site prior to setting up my tank. <Well, we're sure glad you found us now!> The only complaint I have is that most of the articles and FAQs deal with tanks that have live rock. I know this is the best setup but it is illegal to import or take live rock here in Hawaii. <Exactly. However, don't forget that you can "cultivate" your own "live rock" by using "dead" calcareous rock in your system and allowing it to "recruit" life forms over time.> My tank is a 60 gallon hexagon that was originally set up with only a Remora Pro Skimmer and Maxi-Jet 600 pump for circulation.  This was at the suggestion of friends with the same setup on a 30 gallon tank. They also suggested that quarantine was not necessary. <Grr....The old saying "With friends like these..." comes to mind! Seriously, a quarantine tank is really one of the best investments you can make in your hobby, saving you lots of time, money, and heartache!> I know now better as I am starting to have problems with my fish that I suspect are related to water quality and not using quarantine. <We've all learned similar lessons the hard way over time...> I have ordered a Hagen Aqua Pro 70, Maxi-Jet 1200 and heater to improve filtration, circulation and stabilize water temperature. The tank is located in an office building that uses A/C during the day and shuts it off at night. Fluctuating temperature seems to be a problem. <Indeed, fluctuating temperature is a definite cause of stress for many fishes and inverts, and you are correct in addressing this issue!> The tank has been running for two months and pH is 8.2, ammonia 0, nitrite 0, nitrate <25. The water just never looks as clear as I would like.  I have also set up two 10 gallon tanks for quarantine and treatment. <Excellent!> Each is equipped with a Millennium 300, heater and PVC for cover. Our present fish are a 2" Zebra Blenny, 1 1/2" Percula Clownfish, 2" Blue Regal Tang and 3" Flame Angel. We also have 7 hermit crabs and two Lysmata shrimp. The Blenny and Percula are two of the original fish. The Angel was added a couple of weeks ago and the Tang last week. <A nice mix of fish, but you're really pushing it on the stocking level. Keep in mind the very large size and environmental requirements of the Regal Tang. It will need a much larger tank in the near future to live a healthy life span.> I probably don't have to tell you, but the tang developed ick after about three days in our tank. I added the shrimp to the tank and they did start to clean him, but the Flame Angel kept running him out of the cleaning station. I have him in the treatment tank with Cupramine and am doing daily water checks, changing the water and testing the copper level. <Good...Copper is somewhat controversial with Tangs, as it can damage the digestive fauna that live within them, but it can be used effectively if you monitor the copper level carefully and keep a close eye on the fish.> He is eating well and swimming around but the ick seems to be worse. I have been trying to keep his tank at 80 degrees but the office building temperature changes are making this difficult. Some changes have been between 2-3 degrees different-normally upward to  82-83 degrees. <The fluctuating temperatures are certainly not helping, so your idea of stabilizing the temperature is right on.> The Percula Clown is now showing signs of having ick as well. He is a bit on the small side and will not allow the shrimp to clean him. The Blenny and Angel seem to be fine. I am going to remove all fish from the display tank and let it stay fallow for 4-6 weeks while I quarantine the rest of the fish. I will also increase temp and decrease salinity in this tank while the fish are in QT. <Great procedure! You've been doing your homework!> I plan on dipping them in the pH & temp adjusted Methylene Blue dip prior to placing in the QT. Is Methylene Blue OK for the blenny? <Should be fine. It's not really effective on ich, but it is appropriate to use in a dip.> Should the clown be placed in the QT tank or the treatment tank with the tang? <At this point, I'd leave the Tang in there alone, as he is farter along in the treatment phase, and the addition of the Percula could be problematic.> Dipped in Methylene Blue or a Formalin dip? <Well, if you're going to treat the fish with copper, I'd stick with the Methylene Blue. Otherwise, you're adding even more stress to the fish by subjecting them to two different strong chemicals in a short period of time...> I am feeding them Prime Reef, Formula Angel food w/ sponge, mysis shrimp and Nori soaked in VitaChem. <Excellent variety.> Also, could I have just removed the inverts from the display tank, treated it with Cupramine and then returned the inverts when the tank was cycled with the Aqua Pro filter? Is there any harm in treating the display tank since there is no live rock? <Well, you could, but the possible residual copper could be a problem for the inverts when they return. Also, you have the added difficulty of maintaining a proper therapeutic dose while the substrate and rocks are "sucking up" the medication. Frankly, I am not a big fan of medicating display tanks, even if they don't contain inverts.> I have ordered "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" and am looking forward to reading it. <An excellent guide that will provide you lots of good nuts-and-bolts reference material!> Any other suggestions for this tank setup and fish treatment would be appreciated. <I think that you're right on target here!> I have been reading this website daily for the past two weeks and am overwhelmed by the amount of information available. <There certainly is a lot of information to be had on WWM, but it sounds like you've absorbed a lot of it! Hang in there and you'll be fine!> Aloha, Danna   <Any time, Danna! Regards, Scott F.>

Saltwater ick  9/29/05 I have a question about lowering the salt level to wipe out ick, If you do lower the salt level why couldn't you just leave the level low all the time? <Good question... turns out many stores, some wholesalers do leave their specific gravity unnaturally low for the purpose of reducing troubles with external parasites, increasing carrying capacity by allowing higher dissolved oxygen and saving a bit of money on salt mix (or diluting hauled natural water)... But there are downsides to this practice. Try holding your eyes open in a solution of water that is not isotonic with your body's solute content and you'll see... Aquatic animals are in more or less intimate contact with their watery environments... and leak or not depending on the make up of this world... some more than others. Bob Fenner> Ick treatment suggestion for my LFS  9/28/05 Hello, I wrote to you recently about my ick problem... I know my approach was probably backwards.. But it seems to be working... I pulled and my liverock (about 150lbs) of it out of my main display and added malachite green to my display tank to treat my fish only and it seems to be working... 1 week left of treatments left to go.. and all appetites are back... Anyway I just wanted to tell you that my LFS guy told me I could have treated my main display tank for 2 weeks with no adverse reactions from my fish or inverts... He also swears that he treats his 250 gallon in store display tank with malachite green and has never lost a fish or invert... How could this be? <... don't know... a sub-lethal (to the livestock) dose... luck?> I have been using him for about 10 years and he has never steered me wrong in the past.. He owns a very popular store in New Jersey... needless to say I did not follow his advice....This could be why we make terrariums out of our fish tanks.. hehe <You are (painfully) correct here. Again, there are few bonafide methods for parasite eradication in marine aquariums... these are stated, investigated over and over in the scientific (not the hobbyist) press... Nonetheless, there persists ignorance in abundance, products of soda pop, hot pepper, other make-up that are sold, good-sellers, that result in huge losses of livestock, hobbyists, business... amazingly self-defeating. Having spent decades in the trade, including fourteen years "on the floor" in retail, am continuously incredulous at how gullible the public apparently is... Heard recently (on a PBS Sunday game show) that two out of five Americans believe the sun revolves around the earth... Bob Fenner>

Saltwater ich !!  9/25/05 Hi Bob, <Ramy> After reading the WetWeb archives about ich, I know that you don't believe in what is called the reef safe medications. <Have never encountered one that was safe... and effective> My question is regarding a new medication by nosickfish company, www.nosickfish.com All the reviews claim it is a miraculous medication. What is your opinion ?? <Mmm, have met the young fellow who rep.s this stuff twice now... last week's MACNA, last IMAC... seems earnest, yet won't/can't say what the product is, the history of its development... how it works... so am doubtful... However, I would "cast your net out" a bit further and ask fellow hobbyists for input... on the large/r BB's like Reefs.org, ReefCentral... re their experience/s> My regal and powder blue tangs are heavily infected and there is no way I can tear up the tank to catch them. It is a 150 gal , SPS tank and a few clams . HELP !!!!! Ramy, Canada. <I would prepare for "the worst" by setting up a treatment tank, be ready to drain... and quarantine all newcomers... Bob Fenner>

Re: Saltwater ich !!  9/30/05 Hi Bob, <Ramy> Thank you for your reply. I emailed the nosickfish guy and he replied back saying that this medication is not 100% effective but they have 85% success rate over the other medications !!! <I see... the young fellow I met twice seemed earnest> So here I am , 4 cleaner shrimps, 1 cleaner wrasse and 3 neon gobies. The Regal tang is doing great but the powder blue is heavily infected and it is a coward as it does not allow any of the cleaner shrimps or the neon gobies to touch her. Any other suggestions, it is very hard to catch the fish in this setup with all the SPS . <... drain the tank to catch out all fishes... the sessile invertebrates will not be harmed by this temporary air exposure, and this is much easier on the fishes> P.S. I feed with the garlic flakes and mysis shrimps . <I don't put much stock in garlic (though I do put garlic in most of my stocks...)> Thanks again. Ramy, Canada. <Do read over the parasitic disease, systems articles, FAQs files on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans  9/21/05 Hello crew, <Mark> Well, I've done all the right things with regards to QT and still got a case of Ich.  It must have been present in my tank prior to the introduction of a Pacific Sailfin Zebrasoma veliferum just waiting for a susceptible fish.   <Happens> I checked all my water parameters and all is well in the main tank.  A trace of Nitrate is all.  I did a water change cleaning the sand as best as possible, raised temp from 78 to 82 over time, and observed for a few days. I have been reading about the life cycle of marine Ich and I understand what's going on but need a little direction.  The Tang had a pretty good case of Ich and after a couple of days it got "better". <Yes...> So I did another water change trying to suck up the cysts before they "hatched".  The Tang remained free of spots for a day or so and then my Coral Beauty got it.  At this point I said to myself, self, it's time for plan B.  So I broke out a 55 Gal hospital tank and filled it mostly with water from the main tank.  I took a Skilter 250 (I got it cheep) that I use as supplemental filtration my sons 29 gal tank and put it on the hospital tank.  I knew that this would not be enough to keep the Ammonia under control so I took all of the LR out of the main tank (35+ #) and put it in the hospital tank. <...?>   After 2 days Ammonia level is elevated at .5ppm.  I did a water change and hooked up a canister filter that I found in my stash of stuff using the filter media and a few Bio balls from my Wet/Dry in the main tank.  I checked ammonia again this morning (3 days after setup) and its not getting worse but still at .5ppm.  I need to check Nitrite tonight.  The canister has only been running less than 24 hrs so we'll see what happens.  During all of this one of my 2 Ocellaris Clowns now has a bad case.  The Coral Beauty is slightly better and the Tang is fine.  The only other fish is a 6 Line Wrasse, and he's is fine, so far.  At this point it's over a week since the outbreak but only 3 days into hospital setup.  I'm reluctant to use copper due to the Tang and the LR. I need the LR to keep the biological situation under control and I don't want to kill the bacteria the Tang needs for digestion.  All fish are eating well at this point, feeding very sparingly. The ocellaris looks pretty bad (lots of spots), Coral beauty is on-the-mend, and the Tang is doing great.  It seems that the fish are slowly fending this off on their own with a little help from me vacuuming the bottom of the hospital tank. <... not really... understand that what you see is symptomatic... the Crypt/Ich is still there... just not mal-affecting the fish hosts "as much"> Main tank is empty of hosts and going fallow.  I'm concerned that I'm not going to be able to break the Ich cycle as long as I need the LR for filtration. <Correct> 1. Do you think it's possible to break this cycle w/o using medication while keeping the LR in the tank? <Not likely, no> 2. Can the parasite use the LR in the same manner as it uses the substrate sand? <Yes, assuredly> 3. Assuming that I get the Ammonia under control, should I do daily water changes to break the ich cycle, every other day.? <Can't be "broken" in this way> 4. If I am forced to use Copper, (after removing LR of course), won't I still be battling the biological issue? <Likely, yes> 5. How can I safely use copper w/o totally killing the bacteria needed to keep chemistry under control while waiting for the main tank to "heal"? <Not usually practical... chelated copper (tested at least once daily) is better than straight cupric ion... water changes with pre-made water... switched out "clean" but biologically active filter media...> 6. I'm still unsure, after all the reading, which copper product to use, chelated, non-chelated?  Are there several products that you could recommend? <This is posted...> 7. Will I get an ammonia spike in the main tank when I add the fish back after 30 days in hospital? <Likely not> Thanks in advance for the advice. This website is a great resource, keep up the great work.  Your information allows me to filter out the BS at the LFS. Mark <Steady on my friend... trying times, but not impossible. Bob Fenner> Re: Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans  9/21/05 Bob Thanks for the reply I wasn't sure this message got to you so I sent it again from another e-mail address. Just disregard the other. <Okay> As a recap: 1. Put the LR back in the Main Tank purchase some PVC fittings for structure. 2. Purchase Copper Test Kit.  Treat hospital with a chelated copper product: like Coppersafe or Cupramine? Are both good? <Yes and yes> I'm still worried about the Tang and using Copper! <With caution, the most useful means> 3. I e-mailed you about this awhile back (April?).  My tap water (municipal well water from good artesian springs) registers zero ammonia, but when I add salt I register a tenth or two in my premixed water.  I've never been able to figure this out. <From the salt mix, no worries>   I thought it was the cheap salt but it happens with the good stuff too.  I thought it was the test kit, but I get same result with new kit different mfg.  I think that's where the ammonia is coming from in my H.T.  I can't figure out how it's being generated in my premixed water.  Any ideas, I'm stumped. 4.  I don't think I can keep the chemistry under control in the H.T. but I'll give it a shot.  I'm not clear on how to get "clean" biologically active filter media. <Seed, or borrow from a clean system/source... have water pass through... perhaps feed a bit of dried food to keep bacteria going> The tank I can seed from is infested with the little bugs.  My 29 only has an UG filter since I pulled the power filter for the H.T.  If I use the coral substrate to seed with it will absorb the copper. Any suggestions? Mark <Read... on WWM re if unclear. Bob Fenner> Re: Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans, Marine Ich & Hospital Tank Troubles  9/21/05 Bob, I'm in a real pickle here. I took your advice on my 55gal H.T. and moved the LR back to the main tank.  (I e-mailed you from work, different address) Here is the setup. Tank 55 gal filled mostly with water from main tank and topped off with premixed water used for changes. Filtration is as follows: (1) Skilter 250 from another established tank and (1) Fluval 303 canister filter stocked with bio balls and filter media from main tank. Fish: (1) med sized Sailfin Tang (Zebrasoma veliferum), (1) small Coral Beauty, (2) Ocellaris Clowns, (1) 6 line wrasse. I've got multiple problems. 1.)         3 days in and Ammonia in H.T is over .5ppm even after using; water from display, filter media already "seeded" from established systems, and doing an 8gal water change using water from my established "clean" 29gal. 2.)         I'm somehow creating ammonia in my premix water and don't want to use it in H.T.  Tap water (well water from municipal well) tests 0, add salt (instant ocean) and ammonia tests .2ppm.  Ammonia reading in both established systems is 0.  I've duplicated this result with a previous test kit.  I'm dumbfounded. Nitrite is 0 with a trace of Nitrate ( I don't have an RO unit unfortunately) 3.)         I just added Coppersafe to H.T. after purchasing a test kit for Copper.  Initial test indicated a level of between 1.5 & 2.0ppm total copper 1hr after dosing. 4.)         I was feeding sparingly.  I will stop until Ammonia is under control. Is the filtration listed above going to be enough to get the Ammonia under control quickly enough? <Only time, experience will/can show... I would have new water on hand for dilution/change if ammonia approaches 1.0 ppm>   I was hoping to avoid the ammonia increase by using the existing filter media and water from my established systems. <Mmm, not practical... likely the copper will kill, subtend nitrification...> I'd hate to kill the fish with ammonia while trying to cure them of ich. <Yes... happens... often> My last resort is to put them in the 29 until I can get the H.T. under control. Then I'd contaminate the only "clean" source of water I have. <Pass them through a pH-adjusted freshwater dip/bath enroute... might possibly effect a cure> Frustrating!  Can you send me an Easy Button to fix this!  I've got to get this ammonia under control. <I wish> Mark <Bob Fenner> Re: Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans  9/22/05 Bob, <Mark> Thanks for your continued patience.  I have been using the site and have answered many of my questions.  I'm trying not to over react. <No need to try, do> Here is my plan of attack, see what you think. 1. Since I can't keep ammonia under control with filtration alone, I'm going to use my established 29 gal tank as my water source and change 8 to 10 gal in the H.T daily, adding CopperSafe as needed to keep total copper at 1.5 to 2.0ppm.  I also have 25 gal of premixed water as a backup. <Okay> Side note: I did see a about .1ppm of Nitrite this morning maybe the filters are going to catch up or more likely both bacteria populations are compromised.?? <Maybe>   The LR I moved out last night was probably keeping Nitrite in check. <And absorbed the copper...> 2. Treat fish in H.T. for 1 week assuming I can keep ammonia less than 1 ppm Given the ammonia situation I didn't want to extend treatment for full 2 weeks. 3. After 1 week of CopperSafe treatment move fish to established 29 gal tank for remaining 3 weeks of fallow period.  I may have to find a home for 2 yellow damsels if they go after my Tang. Concerns: Can the fish handle exposure to both copper and .5ppm of ammonia for the next week? <Likely so> Will 8 to 10 gal daily water changes disrupt the biological filtration in my 29 gal tank if I'm careful not to clean the substrate? <There should be no substrate...> Is there any other way to "lockup" the ammonia w/o affecting the copper?   <Not practically...> Mark <... keep reading, please... the areas on Crypt, Copper use, testing... Bob Fenner>

Re: Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans, not reading...  9/23/05 Bob, Sorry I must not have been clear.  I know it's confusing.   I removed the LR before adding the Copper to H.T.  I have been reading.  The 29 is a separate established "clean" system with a couple of Yellow Damsels, Hermit Crabs, 20# of LR and crushed coral substrate. <... can't be treated with copper... Hello... please read... please>   The 55 gal H.T. is bare bottomed except the PVC fittings for fish to hide in.  Main system has been fallow for a week today.  I'll know by the end of the weekend if I'm making headway on the Ich.  It's been long enough for another cycle to start.  If I don't see any new trophonts the copper is working.  I think I will go insane if another fish comes down with it. All five fish are looking/acting normally.  The only fish with visible signs is an ocellaris clown and those symptoms are improving daily.  He had a real bad case 7 days ago in the main tank.  My battle now becomes water chemistry in the H.T. and how long I want to fight the Ammonia and Nitrite.  I'm testing in the morning and evening and getting strange results with my ammonia test.  The resultant color doesn't seem to match the color gradient. I tested last night and then did a 20 gal water change and tested again.  No change in resultant color and it still looks a little odd.  The color for .5 is a yellow green and more of a solid green for 1.0 on the test card.  I'm getting something like a fluorescent green that doesn't fit the chart. Could I be getting a strange result due to the salt mix?   <Good question... I don't think so> Water was mixed 24 hrs in advance.  When I test the premix water I see a slightly lighter color of that fluorescent green that still doesn't fit the color gradient.  My thought is that the salt mix is giving me a false reading and you've indicated in previous e-mails that this is possible.  Any idea how to get an accurate reading for ammonia while doing so many water changes in an un-cycled tank? <Try a different test kit, maker, reaction series> I may try the LFS but they probably have same test kit as mine.  I don't want to do unnecessary water changes based on false tests results.  OTOH I don't want to risk ammonia killing my fish, based on false tests results.  When I test my established systems I get a direct color match for 0 ppm. I don't suspect that the test kit is bad. Nitrite test doesn't seem to be affected.  Nitrite levels are at or below .1ppm. Last 2 questions I promise.  Some of the FAQ's and articles talk about maintaining .15 to .2 ppm of Copper for 1 to 2 weeks. <... not copper... but free cupric ion, Cu++...> The Coppersafe information doesn't give a recommended treatment time and suggests a dosage rate of 1.5 to 2.0 ppm. <Yes... because this is a chelated/sequestered compound... the act of testing it breaks the bond, releases all measured/measurable cupric ion... Understanzee?>   It also says that it treats water for 1 month. <Not likely... as you will/would see if testing for this long> This is a big difference. Was the .15 to .2ppm a type-o or have I just killed my fish?  Should I treat for 1 week or 1 month?  I have a total copper level in my H.T. tank of about 2.0 maybe less.  Fish have been subjected to that level for almost 2 full days now. <... you should read... where?> Thanks again for your patience.  I'm not a total rookie here, just a little freaked out over the possibility of killing an entire tank of fish. I've never had a case of ich before, FW or SW.  I've kept FW fish quite successfully for over 20 years but only about 1 yr exp with SW.  I'm learning with your help. Mark    <... Bob Fenner>

Re: Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans  9/23/05 Bob, I know I shouldn't treat an established system with copper.  Duh!!  Never intended to.  One of the repeated mantras in the FAQ's is don't treat the main tank with Copper.  I get it!  I wanted to use the water in my established system (the 29) to help keep the H.T. (the 55 gal) in check. With all due respect why don't you read!  I was pretty specific about this.  I'm concerned about using the premixed water due to the ammonia reading in it and was going to use water from the 29 (zero ammonia) to put in H.T. (the 55) to reduce ammonia. Understanzee?  Kind of stupid to replace ammonia with ammonia, don't ya think.  However, I didn't want to compromise the biofiltration in the 29 by doing repeated massive water changes and replacing the water with premixed water containing ammonia.  Why punish the fish in the 29? Problem is I'm not sure I can trust the stupid test kit.  Took 3 water samples (main tank (going fallow), premix, and H.T.) to the LFS and tested with 2 different kits.!   One supported my results (same test kit as mine) the other kit showed no ammonia at all in either the premix or the H.T.  I know the main tank is zero, its the only constant.  Every kit reads zero ammonia on the main tank.  So, which do you believe...its a crap shoot with about $250 of live stock.  If I had a doctorate in chemistry I might be able to figure out why the test kits are reading differently and thus may be able to make a more informed choice as to what's best for my live stock.  Since I've never had a case of Ich, I'm in uncharted territory. This is a great place to look for info and I love this site.  I've told countless people about it.  However, some of it is non-specific.  I appreciate the fact that you don't have hours to restate things that have already been answered.  I don't like doing it in my line of work. If I had found specific answers, I wouldn't have asked questions. Our LFS is better than most I suspect, but most of the employees are high schoolers who can barely make change at the cash register let alone explain the difference between cupric ion and chelated copper.  I myself was unsure until you beat me over the head with it.  I also explained that in my search I've found conflicting information about how long to treat the fish, 1 week, 2 weeks, a month.  I could read until the next millennium and won't be able to find one specific consistent recommendation.  So....I guess I'll take another crap shoot with about $250 dollars of live stock.  This is no ones fault...its the down side to the hobby. I informed myself as much as I could.  Applied good QT practice and after 4 weeks of QT I had no signs of a problem.  2 weeks after intro to main tank I had a full blown case of Ich.  FW dip may or may not have prevented this. Its moot at this point.  Like Forest Says..$h_t happens.  It could be a temp thing due to the cool nights and warm days! here in late summer.  Its tough to regulate a house when you have A/C on during the day and heat at night.  Not sure if that's it or not. Its like flying R/C airplanes (something else I'm fond of).  Sometimes you crash a really nice airplane and you don't know why.  So what do you do?  You pick up the pieces and try to learn from it.. and build another one. I thank you for the good information you've provided and I'll get over the ego thing and keep reading. I'll just read as much as I can and try to filter out the good from the BS at the LFS.  I actually had a guy (the owner) at the LFS talk about Ich as though it were bacterial.  Lucky for him his employees know the difference. I'm out Mark < http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisindex.htm>

Re: Battle with Cryptocaryon irritans  9/24/05 Bob, http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisindex.htm Been there, read most of that previously! It's great information! OK I've calmed down. Let me try this approach. Goal: Kill Cryptocaryon irritans with out killing fish. Inventory: (1) well establish crypt contaminated FOWLR 55 gal main system, (1) well established "clean" FOWLR 29 gal system. (1) 55 gal H.T. (rather large for QT/HT but its what I've got), One plastic garbage can with 25 gal of premixed water used every two weeks for normal water changes in both systems. Creatures:  55 gal main system: 1 med sized Pacific Sailfin (Zebrasoma veliferum), 1 6-line Wrasse, 2 Ocellaris Clowns, 1 Coral Beauty, 1 sand sifting star.  29 gal system has 2 yellow damsels and a Chromis. History of my actions: Initially attempted to beat the cycle with elevated temp and water changes in main 55 gal tank.  Was not, learned could not be, successful.  Ich spread from Tang to Coral Beauty to Clown.  Setup 55 gal HT, used water from main tank, filter media and bio balls from main tank wet/dry in a canister filter, took a backup power filter off the 29 and used LR from main tank in attempt to maintain biological filtration.  I did not initially treat HT with anything for about 3 days.  I wanted to see if just removing the fish to better water conditions would improve the situation. Symptoms did improve w/o medication, understandably due to normal crypt cycle.  After discussing things with you I decided to remove LR from HT and use a chelated copper medication (Coppersafe) to treat the now bare bottomed HT (again now void of LR).  I'm doing water changes in HT to keep ammonia under control.  Can not keep at 0, can only dilute.  Nitrites are also rising.  I know...this is all predictable. What I Know: Crypt cycle, untreated at normal water temps can last 30 days w/o hosts. Main tank must remain fallow for at least 30 days due to crypt cycle. Fish are doing fine.  No new symptoms of ich after 3 days of Coppersafe treatment. Last fish with symptoms is now totally symptom free. No signs of secondary infections.  HT is going to be a challenge.  Real possibility of killing the fish with poor water quality even with water changes, due to unknown source of ammonia in premixed water.  You say it's the salt mix.. no worries..., sorry...I'm concerned because I don't understand it.  If I can't solve this problem I'm possibly adding ammonia to my main tanks during normal water changes.  Kind of counter productive IMO.   What I don't know: How long crypt can last in a Coppersafe treated tank.  Why my salt mix (Instant Ocean) is producing an ammonia reading.  How I got Ich in my main tank.   <All posted> What I'm humbly seeking guidance on...please bear with me: What is your recommendation for duration of Coppersafe treatment in this case.  I have read conflicting information on WWM.  Some say 1 week, some say 2 weeks, some say one to two weeks. <Two weeks> I have read accounts that recommend 1 month.  Coppersafe bottle doesn't make a recommendation and I don't trust LFS. My goal is to treat this as long as necessary and no longer.  How long is long enough?  I am unable to determine this.  I want to safely move fish to the established clean 29 as soon as possible to avoid killing them with poor water quality.  The 29 will undoubtedly be overloaded for a short period. And I may have to remove the yellow damsels if they get pesky. The biological filter is however established and can be nursed along better than the HT.  If I have to treat for 1 month then I guess I won't be moving them to the 29 and I need a lot more salt to keep up the rate of water change in the HT.  I am learning why a smaller HT may be in order. I'm really close to beating this bug mostly due to the information I read at WWM.  Please understand my frustration with the medication and lack of specific instructions.  I appreciate the fact that you continue to respond in a very timely manner to this humbled fish keepers e-mails. Mark <I recall conversations with John Caskie and Eric Silverman in the mid-90's when they asked me to respond to queries re Flying Fish Express (which became Petstore.com, Pets.com with the hand-puppet, acquired by Rob Miller (ERI), ultimately to Dr.FosterSmith... concerning the format of information... having written general marine books, been in the trade decades, I assured them that simple (Dear Abby) query-responses were very unsatisfying... that people would not "get complete answers" in a timely fashion for important (as in life/death) situations with such a system... and hence started WWM, posted several hundred of my articles, thousands of pix, and enlisted the help, content of others... we developed an online zine to proffer a useful database to the desirous public... this system was structured in such a way that folks could search through cached accounts, highlighting searched terms, being able to utilize Boolean technology... for the most part this works, though there are folks who are hesitant to devote the time, suffer the repetition (intended) to "learn what they need to know, though they very unlikely realize what this is at the time... perhaps not later"... BobF>

Crypt the dragon  10/6/05 Bob, <Yes?> I have sent many e-mails over the last couple of weeks concerning my battle with Crypt.  With your help, Crypt the dragon met his demise and a biological disaster in the hospital tank has been avoided. The HT finally cycled after multiple water changes using an established 29 gal tank even while consistently replacing the Coppersafe removed by the water changes. It surprised me that I was able to get the HT tank to cycle while treating with Coppersafe. <Happens... not always> The only thing I can attribute this to is the use of water from my established tank to do the water changes. <Yes, the best source> Even with this, I expected to battle the ammonia and nitrite throughout the entire quarantine process due to the copper treatment. Believe me I'm not complaining.  I was doing water changes in my sleep. The copper treatments end today in the HT and I will begin the process of water changes to remove the remaining copper.  The fish will be back in the main tank in about 10 days. Again, I cannot tell you enough how I appreciate your help and WWM. Mark <Congratulations on your success. Bob Fenner>

Hepatus tang and Cryptocaryon 9/19/05 Dear WWM Crew, I am writing to you because I have reached a point where I have nowhere else to turn.  I have had this Hippo Tang in a bare quarantine tank for over 9 weeks now and I cannot get this fish to stop contracting "ich". I have used every possible resource on your site and I only wanted to write as a last resort. Treatment Details:  Originally I started with hyposalinity (1.09 SG, using a refractometer) for 4 weeks to no avail.  I slowly returned the SG to normal and then started treating with Coppersafe (using a test kit to monitor the levels) for 2 weeks.  Again, the ich has re-appeared, or should I say never disappeared. I then tried several formalin (Rid-Ich+) baths, and I would leave the tang in the solution for an hour.  You guessed it, ich is still showing.  I have now picked up a bottle of SeaCure but of course the Aquarium Pharm copper test kit I have doesn't have a reading for this type of copper level and I'm treating "blindly" at the moment till I can find a test kit (I drove to at least 4 LFS the last two days to find a simple test kit without luck and I'm fuming).  <I can only imagine your frustration!  I am surprised that this barrage of treatments has not been successful.  I would suggest confirming 100% that you are dealing with ick.  As for the SeaCure, I am not sure that a test kit exists to accurately monitor it.  I would simply follow the package directions precisely.> Conclusion: My WWM Friends, I am totally desperate. I just bought a neon goby and it's been "going to town" on the tang but the white spots still remain, and the tang still scratches too.  All in all, the tang is doing EXTREMELY well considering what it has gone through but I worry it will never have a chance to go into the main tank.  What else can I do?  For what it's worth, I had ordered this tang online through saltwaterfish.com.  When I received this poor tang it was so tiny and skinny it was almost transparent.  Through TLC and Nori feeding it has gotten plump and much larger but the crypt is our nemesis. Please help "us". Thank you!! - Jeff <See here for some great information (as well as part 2 of the linked article): http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2003-08/sp/index.php  I also have one last suggestion (assuming you are 100% sure you are dealing with Ick).  Set up a second hospital tank and fill it with water from your main display.  Move the fish to the second tank.  Drain the first hospital tank and allow it to dry COMPLETELY.  After the fish has been in the second hospital tank for three days, fill the empty tank from the display and move the fish to the new tank. Repeat this tank transfer procedure through a total of four moves and the fish should be ick free.  Best Regards.  AdamC.>  

Brooklynella or ICH? Treat for both... 9/19.5/05 Was wondering if you could help me ID This... I don't want to let this destroy my tomato clowns but some say ich and one says Brooklynella but I want to be sure and treat it right and quick photos are here: www.fearstyle.com/photography/wtf/ they are a tad large and first stab photographing with a macro lens its hard to keep a moving subject in focus :( - Scott <Well Scott, the easiest thing to do is treat for both.  Your pictures were a little too blurry for me to make a definitive diagnosis, but it is easy enough to deal with both possibilities.  I would give the fish a formalin bath on its way into a quarantine tank where it is followed up with a hyposalinity treatment.  -Steven Pro (a blast from the past at MACNA).>


Dead Fish, Ich, Fallow Period - 09/17/2005 I have a question that I don't think you have ever answered (or was asked :-). <Nifty!> I know when a reef tank has Ich a fallow period of 30 days without fish is usually recommended. <I usually tend to recommend a touch longer; the length of the parasite's lifecycle is partially dependant upon water temperature.> In one of my 90 gallon tanks I had an ich outbreak. I was unable to find the bodies of 2 small clown fish. Perhaps they were eaten by the snails, starfish, etc. who knows?   <Indeed.  Someone had a good meal.> If you do not remove the dead bodies what is your recommendation for the completely safe fallow period you should wait before introducing new fish to the tank? <I would give it one month from the time you can best assume that they were quite dead and eaten; or, perhaps, one month from now.  Better safe than sorry.  Hey, at least you can begin quarantining new clowns now, eh?  Because of course you'll be quarantining from here ought, right? (grin)  Wishing you well,  -Sabrina> Re: Dead Fish, Ich, Fallow Period - 09/17/2005 Thanks I think I will wait 2 months more to be safe since I am pretty sure bodies are gone and at most bits and pieces might be somewhere. I trust you would agree that is long enough. <Yes, quite good.> I note the 2 fish died about 4 weeks ago. Interestingly the fish that died last was a batfish that had previously gone through successful copper treatment. When he was returned to the main tank about one month later the ich returned even though the tank had been fallow for about 30 days which makes me wonder if in fact some ich can survive much longer. <As I mentioned, the length of the lifecycle of ich is partially dependant upon the temperature of the water.> I know there is disagreement on this point.   <Mm, some....  not a whole lot.> I also feel copper treatment is good but the problem is once you have ich the quarantine tank ammonia will skyrocket quick if the fish is fairly large. <Yup.  You must plan for large water changes when using most any medication; many meds can and will kill your nitrifying bacteria - thus, the only way to remove ammonia and nitrite is by dilution (water changes).> I have found that sponge filters that are "biologically active" from main tank really don't do much <Right.  The copper kills the bacteria.  It's pretty much impossible to have any sort of biological filtration at all when treating with copper.> and you must do large water changes at least once a day or the ammonia will overwhelm the fish. <'Tis the only solution.> William J. Unroch, Attorney <"Better luck next time" - really, at the very worst, you have learned a great deal from this to apply to your system.  You will do fine.  Wishing you well,  -Sabrina> Are there other diseases that look like crypt but are not crypt ?  9/17/05 Dear Bob,     I have a question re: diseases that may look like marine crypt but are not.  As you know I have recently had a crypt outbreak in my display which is successfully being treated with copper in QT's and allowing the display to lie fallow.      I am noticing that my large Naso tang has been developing what looks like white-ish pimples that look larger than crypt  over the head, gill opercula, and the body.  He is in QT with a purple and a powder blue ( 55 gal )  I noted these lesions when the fish was in the display and they looked like crypt. The fish also had smaller lesions salt grain sized that I definitely thought were crypt.  Now after 10 days in copper at therapeutic levels in a 55 gal QT I see that many of these areas are unchanged. The areas around the head definitely look like HLLE.  ( the raised white areas have been followed by areas of depigmentation and mild tissue erosion ) The dusting of crypt on the fins is "gone" While in copper all fish are doing great except for the fact that the tangs have developed a touch of HLLE.  Could I be dealing with something other than ich on the Naso ? <Possibly, but not likely. Copper use is effective against most all external parasites... Very likely this is "just" a reaction of your tang to copper, stress...> Could this be HLLE ?  Can :HLLE effect the body of the fish also ? <Yes and yes> These areas resemble crypt but are larger.  Fins and gills (probably) are spared. I am using Cupramine with SeaChem test kit as recommended.  The fish are eating like pigs.  Copper levels tested twice daily with addition of Cupramine to keep level at .5 mg/L.  If these areas do not heal after 3 weeks of copper could one assume that we are not dealing with crypt and would it be safe to return the fish to the display? <Yes>      An unrelated question.  How long would you recommend that Live Rock, and skunk cleaner shrimp be QT'd before addition to an established display in a FOWLR tank ? <A couple of weeks. Take a look at these "pimples"... do they appear bilaterally symmetrical? On both sides of the fish in about the same area? Is likely "neuromast degeneration" (aka HLLE)... will hopefully "cure" on the fish's return to the main system. Bob Fenner> Thanks Jimmy

Minor Ick problem part 2 9/13/05 Adam, I thank you for your rapid response. As soon as I read your e-mail, the Ick was back and fighting mad. So, I tried to follow your advice so here is what I did. Let me know if this is FUBAR. I got 3 Rubbermaid tubs for my liverock and inverts, placed 802 power heads in the tubs and placed them in my garage for now.  I have to treat my fish in the main tank, but all of my inverts and liverock are removed. I think that should be OK, right?  I don't have the space for a QTank for all of my fish. <This is really a backwards approach.  Your Rubbermaid tubs could have mad perfectly suitable quarantine tanks and saved you the disruption of tearing the tank apart.  Also, if there is any sand or gravel in the tank, it is just as likely to absorb any medication as the live rock was.  Without any live rock, sand etc., you need something else to provide biological filtration for the treatment period.> I added malachite green to my 125 at the suggested dosage of 2 drops per gallon. The lights are off and my UV unplugged and I don't use any activated carbon. I guess I add the same dosage every other day for 3 days and then a water change of at least 50%.  <Malachite green would not have been my first choice, but it can be effective.  I would follow the 50% water change with the use of some carbon.> I'm sorry but the directions on the bottle are not so clear, can you you tell me when I can add my inverts and rock back in. <After the 50% water change, I would add carbon and resume lights and UV.  After another day or so, you can add the live rock, etc. back to the tank.> Please make any corrections to this as you see fit. I am a big boy I can take it. Now I realize the importance of a hospital tank, so I ordered a 55 gal tank only. I could not wait the 3 days or so for it to arrive from my LFS.  Thank you again. John  <Glad you will have another tank for quarantine and treatment!  If the malachite green does not work, see here:  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/copperus.htm  Copper is almost always a better choice, but must be used in a dedicated hospital tank.  Best Regards.  AdamC.>

Desjardinii Sailfin Tang, lack of QT, ich Hi there, WWM Crew! I've been going through tons of FAQ's on your website, and it's been really helpful. Thanks for providing this knowledge base for other new and veteran fish hobbyists. I have several questions regarding my new Sailfin tang even though I read through most of the tang FAQ's: I recently purchased the Desjardinii (spell check?) tang a few days ago. The pet store seemed to have very healthy livestock so I decided to purchase it. The colors were very vibrant, no signs of malnutrition, and it displayed very active behavior. I acclimated the tang to my established tank over a period of about 2-3 hours, since I don't have a quarantine tank. It seemed to be doing very well, and had a healthy appetite. I also purchased a white-striped cleaner shrimp to add to the tank, and it has seemed to acclimate fine as well. I have a small damsel, and it has started using the cleaner shrimp for its cleaning services. The LFS gave me a bag of red algae to feed the tang. It was submerged in tank water, and they also included a small branch in the tang's bag as an "on-flight meal", if you will. The LFS told me to just place the red algae in the tank, and let the tang pick at it on his own. I'm not sure if there's an "expiration" on this algae or how long I should leave it in the tank before it starts decomposing? <Should be able to be left in the tank indefinitely> I'm assuming this algae is still alive, but the tang has been subsequently grazing off these branches, and I'm wondering when I should remove the leftovers? <Not necessary to remove> Last night, the protein skimmer which hangs over my sump went into overdrive and overflowed. The water in the sump ended up dropping below the skimmer's pump, so the skimmer stopped skimming for one night. <Need to arrange, make a "wall" to back water up in part of the sump to keep/maintain a steady water depth for the skimmer> This morning, I wake up to find the tang with less color, and what appears to be ich sprayed all over his body and fins. <Now, might I ask... doesn't quarantine sound more affordable?> My next question is: Do tangs have increased susceptibility to ich when a protein skimmer is either not utilized in a tank system, or if not working for a period of time? <Mmm, yes> I find it odd that it happened just hours after the skimmer stopped working. <Would very likely have "happened" whether the skimmer was there or not...> Lastly, would your recommendations be to do a fresh-water dip for the tang, or should I take my chances of the tang allowing the cleaner shrimp to clean the ich from his body? <... the shrimp will not eradicate this infestation... your tank has now "got it"> It seems the damsel has found the cleaner shrimp useful quite quickly, but the tang is still a little nervous getting close enough to the shrimp to allow it to clean him. The tang is exhibiting normal feeding, but today it seems like he prefers the bottom left front corner of the tank, swaying back and forth in a horizontal motion. I would like to take action soon before it becomes too late for the sailfin. <Good idea> Just did a water test: Salinity at 1.0235, Ammonia- 0, pH- 8.2, Nitrates-- 10, Nitrites-- 0 (nitrates are down from last week at 20 due to several partial water changes since then). Tank temps are around 84F. Thanks in advance. Alex <Time for you to read: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm and the linked files above... until you understand what you're up against, how to formulate a plan... don't wait... the Crypt is cycling in your system... will be back in larger numbers in a few days. Bob Fenner> Ich, garlic, ammonia... need to think, read, act Hello, I just wanted to thank your crew for taking the time in responding to all the emails they get daily, I was having a real problem with ick in my tank that now seems to be getting under control ::Thanks God:: I did however have one tiny question (you know there had to be a catch;)  )) I am using the liquid garlic in my tank with the food I feed my fish since I don't have the money as of yet for a hospital tank, if that is what I hope is working in my tank how long should I continue to use it and how many times daily? <Making this fresh is better/best... and use daily, with feedings/food> I still see a little ick on two of my fish (the yellow tang whom also has little red dots?? <Very unlikely to effect a cure> and my damsel) the ones that survived the ick infestation are on clown two damsels yellow tang and valentini puffer. I have also noticed that my ammonia is too high is there anything I can do to get it back down that wont stress my fish or hurt my star fish Thanks Again! Amanda <Read: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nh3marfaqs.htm and the linked files above... where you lead yourself. Bob Fenner>

Copper and Invertebrates Don't Mix! 09/12/05  Hi<<Hello>> I have ick in my tank I have a 44gal all fish tank. I recently did a 20 percent water change and added Coppersafe to the tank.<<You should have removed the fish to a separate tank for treatment and let the display tank lie fallow. Copper will remain in tank and kill any invertebrates you add.>>  I was wondering if that will be OK or should I treat it with other things later. <<If the copper treatment is to succeed you must maintain the correct level of copper. This means using a copper test kit and checking everyday and dosing copper accordingly.>> Tomorrow I am going to go to the pet store and buy two cleaner shrimp and a goby to help get rid of the ick. <<No. The copper will kill the shrimps and you should not add fish to an infected system. Your best bet is to pick a treatment regimen, be patient and stick with it.>> Is there anything else I should do concerned with? I really care about my fish and I want to get this infestation out.<<Please search and read on WWM. Search topics should include "copper treatment", "marine ich", "ich and low salinity", "copper and invertebrates" and "quarantine procedures". Good luck - Ted>>

Bad Case of Ick, Ignorance is not bliss.  9/11/05 Hi I have a 44 gal tank that hold now a chocolate chip star fish, cleaner shrimp, 2 damsels and clown fish, valentini puffer, and a yellow tang. A couple weeks ago we discovered ick that got out of control on our banner fish who recently died a couple days later another fish died from unknown cause we treated the fish with a fresh water dip and quick cure no results we currently removed all object and live rock from the tank and the charcoal filter from the tank and treated it with quick cure or something like that it's been 2 days and the fish look in bad shape should I use the copper cure stuff or is there something else I can do to help my fish before they all die? Please Help!       Amanda <... Your fishes are in dire potential danger... Please read (and quickly) here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm and the linked files above. And please, use your grammar, spelling checker before issuing correspondence... Bob Fenner>

Ich Nightmare  9/8/05 Hello, <Hi Sara> First I would like to start by saying thanks for such a great site.<You're welcome>  It has been tremendously helpful for me.  I would also like to apologize in advance for how long the lead up to my question is.  Here goes.  I cannot seem get rid of the ich in my tank.  I have had a 5 gal saltwater tank for a few years, and then decided to get a 58 gal.  I cycled my tank with 5 Chromis and they were ich free, then I got 2 clowns, still ich free, next I got a cleaner wrasse and a half-black angel.  Here is where the nightmare begins.  The angel either had ich or soon got it after I put it in my tank. (I now know that I should have quarantined these fish, but I didn't, my LFS advised me not to, also before I discovered Wet Web)  The ich spread to all my fish.  I moved the fish into a 30 gal Rubbermaid and treated with Cupramine and garlic.  Let my tank go fallow for 6 weeks. Did a major water change.  All the fish were ich free and healthy, put them back in the tank  and within days they had ich. I am  at a total loss now, so I treated with Kick Ich. (Once again advice of the LFS, they swore by it)  Needless to say I lost all my fish.  Did another major water change.  I let my tank go fallow for close to 9 weeks, and cranked the heater up to 90, while the tank was fallow. Put some Chromis in with in a few days they got ich.  Waited some more, let my tank go fallow again.  Did yet another water change.  Bought one damsel quarantined him and treated him with Cupramine for 2 weeks, put him in my tank and he now has ich, with in 5 days.  My tank is grounded, my water tested perfect (throughout this whole ordeal) both with my test and at the LFS, Salinity is at 1.0021, and I run my heater at about 80.  I also have a Bak-Pak and Emperor 400. I even bought fresh food. I have been advised by the LFS to by a UV sterilizer, but I don't know if this will help or if they just want my money. They say most people do not need them, but I do because of the ich problem.  Do you think a UV would be a good investment for me?  They are very expensive and I don't want to get one if it will not help with the ich.  I will try any thing at this point.  Another LFS told me to treat my main tank with Cupramine, that it can be removed.  I would like to have inverts and some mushrooms, someday so I don't know if this is a good idea.  I am at a total loss.  I have spent a fortune on this tank, and cannot keep any fish in it.  My next step will be to trash all my live rock and sand, then start over.  I really do not want to do this, but if it is my only option I will.  Any advice you might have is greatly appreciated.  I have read all the information about ich, but I have not come across anyone who has such a persistent case of it. <Sara, I'm guessing the treatment wasn't effective enough to completely kill the ich.  I would use a product such as Coppersafe along with (most important) a copper test kit to ensure you have an effective treatment level.  UV sterilizers will not eliminate ich 100%.  The downside is that UV's are non selective, they kill both good and bad organisms. The UV will not affect future invertebrates directly, just kill some of the food supply.  Do search the WWM, keyword copper and read more on this form of treatment. James (Salty Dog)> Thank you for your time, <You're welcome> Sara Grant Minor Ick problem 9/9/05 I enjoy your site.. very useful and informative.. Last night I noticed some ich on my hepatus tang and my Copperband. I immediately gave them a fresh water bath for 5 minutes each (same temp and PH)... <A good move to reduce the parasite load, but not a definitive cure.> I tested my water this morning with AP saltwater master test kit...(ammonia at 0ppm) (nitrite at 0ppm) (PH is at 7.9) but my nitrate is at 40plus ppm...I am not due for a water change unit the last week of the month... <40ppm Nitrate is no real problem.  I am more concerned about the sub 8.0 pH.  Even at night, it is best to maintain pH above 8.0, with 8.2 being even better.  Please do test and maintain proper alkalinity to prevent pH lags and swings.> To my surprise the ich spots seem to be gone and none of my fish are scraping anymore...And are eating like crazy. I feed them seed weed selects 3 time a week along with Mysis shrimp OSI flake soaked is Selcon, once or twice daily... <All good, but do beware that your fish/tank are probably not yet Ick free!  Watch for signs of the disease to return and be prepared for further treatment.> In case you want to know...My tank is stocked as follows: 1 percula, 1 hepatus,1 5-inch Koran, 1 flame angel, 2 damsels, 1 yellow tang, 1 copperband butterfly, 1 CBS and 1 chocolate starfish, 100# of liverock.. and a healthy colony of mushrooms. I understand that my tank is a bit overstocked. I am making arrangements to get rid of the Koran. <Your stocking does not sound too bad.  Beware that chocolate chip stars are meat eating predators.  They need to be fed at least a couple of times a week and are well known to prey on sessile inverts in reef tanks.> I am not sure if the ich is dormant or what...I do not have a hospital tank but I do incorporate a freshwater bath for 5 minutes before adding and new additions.  All fish seem fine no loss of appetite or cloudy eyes. Is this due to water quality or environmental stress? And how should I proceed from this point? Thank you for your patience...JOHN  <Although poor water quality and stress can make fish more susceptible to ick, it will not occur if it is not introduced, hence the importance of quarantine!  FW dips remove some, but not all of the parasites and once the parasite is in a stocked tank, every fish can be a carrier (even if you don't notice spots).  If you can keep the parasite loads low by FW dipping the fish, they should acquire natural immunity.  Beware that this does not eradicate the parasites from your system, it just makes the fish less susceptible.  REALLY beware that future additions will not have this acquired immunity and may become infected.  If you suffer a major outbreak, you will have to move all of the fish to a hospital tank for aggressive treatment.  In the future, I would suggest quarantine for all new additions.  Best Regards.  AdamC.> Water change & what to do with my sand sifting goby, actually Crypt  9/1/05 Hi, I need your advice I have a salt water fish only tank that was just set up in June. Everything was just fine until about a week ago when we got ich. <One doesn't just "get" ich... it's brought in>   I want to set up a tank for my fish while I leave my tank go fallow. Where do I get my water for changes? <Mmm, you can make it, borrow it, buy it...> Is it safe to use the water from my tank? <Not if the tank is infested> And what should I do with my sand sifting goby?? He is our favorite and seems healthy? Should I get sand for the isolation tank? Thanks I am new and even though I read your book and others I guess I still have to learn the hard way. THANKS Again Dave <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm and the linked files above... till you understand what you're up against... Knowledge, understanding, action... Bob Fenner> Re: ich treatment for dwarf angels  8/27/05 FYI... dwarf angels don't do well with a full dose of rid ich.  all  three are now dead.  ph, salinity, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate were all  very good.   after two weeks of treatment ich was not totally gone.   maybe it was the ich...maybe it was two weeks of formalin.  none the less,  very unsuccessful. Tangs and ich  8/16/05 I have a 210 gal tank. Has about 80 lbs of live rock and soft coral. and some enmities. <Strife and jealousy?> I had lipstick tang, a yellow tang existing, quite well in the tank for several months  We purchased a Hippo tang several weeks ago.  About a week after we introduced the Hippo into the tank, it was very shy.  Within a few days we realized it may have itch. (everything we read, indicated it was more a nuisance the a threat) <... wrong> We treated the tank, over three days.  The fish never improved, eventually died.  We have since lost the rest of our Tangs due to the sickness of the one fish. <... or the treatment, or?> We are still not sure we lost them due to Itch.  we never saw white spots on the Lipstick.  I would like to know a better way of diagnosing a sick fish, and treatment of sick fish. <Uh, easy... study...>   What could I have done to save the rest of the fish, and should I be concerned with the remaining fish in the tank. <Oh yes> What we have left if a Clown Fish and several damsels, and one lawnmower fish, snails, horseshoe crabs, and starfish,   soft, enmities . What should be done, before we reintroduce additional Tangs into the tank. Thanks in advance for any help you could provide. <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisease.htm and on to the linked files at the top of pages... where you lead yourself... the education you need... is up to you... or pay the high cost of ignorance. Bob Fenner> Itch <Seven year?> 8/14/05 Dear crew, <John>        After reading various articles I have purchased a good skimmer, increased pump circulation, increased my sump size and have made provision for a large refugium. The lighting I am still working on, I have no coral, heaps of base rock and only a few fish. I intend to remove my fish, place them in a qt. tank, then bomb my main tank with Clorox, the intent being to rid the system of nuisance algae, anemones and parasites e.g.. Itch. I then intend to recycle the tank and recede <Like my hairline?> it via a quarantine system.  My question is will this kill crypt, itch etc. or do I still have to go fallow for 2 months? Any other suggestions? Gratefully John <Bleach will nuke/kill all. Bob Fenner> Ich v. Air bubbles 8/13/05 I recently treated my orbit batfish for ich. His eyes were cloudy, breathing heavily and in bad shape. After successful copper sulfate treatment for two weeks  I returned him to his 90  gallon home 5 weeks later. The main tank remained fallow for 5 weeks before his return. Everything appeared ok for a few days. Suddenly I started noticing what I thought were white spots on his tail again. After a few days they appeared to be all over his body. When I turned the lights on late at night  they appeared all over. I was extremely upset and debating whether to do a second copper treatment or to try with garlic soaked food and  just leave him with the cleaner shrimp since too much copper can be dangerous <You are right to be concerned here> Suddenly I had a thought that perhaps it was not ich. He wasn't scratching and his eyes were still clear. Appetite fine. Looking carefully in the water I noticed lots of tiny air bubbles from my protein skimmer. Looking in my 4 other reef tanks I did not see any similar spots on the fish. <Bats, Spadefishes are slimier than many other groups of fishes... and with the copper treatment, this specimen would be even slimier... more susceptible to air bubbles sticking on it.> However the protein skimmers in those tanks were in the sump and there were no air bubbles in the tank. I turned off the protein skimmer. Much to my happy surprise the supposed "ich"  had all disappeared within 3 hours. Apparently what had happened was that the air bubbles were attaching to the slow moving batfish. With the light reflection off the air bubbles the air bubbles appeared to be ich. Now I am an experienced marine hobbyist with over 10 years in the hobby. I am also a well know Manhattan attorney so am usually pretty careful how I do things. Yet I came very close to committing fish malpractice by  treating for ich when all I had was air bubbles. <Heee! Case closed counselor> The point of the story is that it is not so easy to tell simply by white spots if you have ich or not. <Yes> If there are any tiny air bubbles in your tank it would behoove the aquarist to first shut the protein skimmer for a few hours and see if the "ich"  is really air bubbles. Slow moving fish appear to be magnets for air bubbles. Sadly I would bet there are thousands of cases of fish being treated for "ich" when all they had were a case of air bubbles. <Agreed... with dire consequences often> It's worth the time to shut your protein skimmer for a few hours to find out. Obviously if your fish are already scratching, not eating, and have cloudy eyes this extra step is not necessary. William J. Unroch, Attorney <Thank you for this. You have saved many organisms, other hobbyists... Bob Fenner>

Re: Ich v. Air bubbles What a great thing to say. Coming from you it is very flattering. You have saved thousands more organisms than I every will and your site is wonderful. I think my comment was needed since I had never seen that issue discussed before. When I realized I  had air bubbles and not ich on the fish I was shocked that even with all my experience I was almost ready to do copper. <As a keen observer of human nature it seems so likely... and yet you had the further intelligence to see through such a "reflex" reaction> Light plays strange tricks on tiny air bubbles. They look white, they build up on the fish over a few days, and even an experienced aquarist can think it is ick - I did :). Hope you mention this in one of your wonderful articles. Thanks again William J. Unroch, Attorney <Will do. Excelsior! Bob Fenner> Ich treatment for Dwarf Angels 8.11.05 Hello Folks, My main tank has come down with ich.  I first noticed it on my hippo  tang, and shortly there after the spots appearing on all the other fish.   (I have 1 hippo tang, 3 dwarf angels, 1 lawnmower blenny, and 2 clowns) <Have the dwarf angels been together long. Over one year... six months even? An unnatural mix and some source of stress indeed> From what I've read angels don't do well with copper, correct?    <True> So I should use a formalin product like Kordon's Rich-Ich +, correct?    <This could be helpful... in a bare-bottomed QT tank. Never dose formalin in the main display. Nor organic dyes for that matter when you have live rock.> Do you recommend the full dosage (1 tsp per 10 gallons), or should I go with a  half dosage?   <Always full strength in QT> If I go with a half dose I'm assuming this will prolong  the treatment time? Thanks!! Travis <In addition to conventional medications, I like to soak food in garlic extract and beta Glucan (get from GNC health stores). I believe these to be very helpful. Best of luck, Anthony>

Ich treatment for dwarf angels II 8.11.05 the dwarf angels have been together for about three months.  they were  added at the same time and get along fine.   <It means little... and is hardly a test of time. If yours are like most, they will scrap in time (sexual maturity) and be a constant source of stress for each other. The mix is unnatural and ill-advised IMO> the reason I asked about the dosage is because I read something on your  site about certain fish being sensitive to such medication .   _ http://www.wetwebmedia.com/formalinart.htm_ ( http://www.wetwebmedia.com/formalinart.htm) <understood> It reads: "Some groups of freshwater fishes (small Characoids/tetras, Mormyrids, loaches...) and marines (Surgeonfishes, Rabbitfishes, dwarf  angelfishes...) are sensitive to formalin and formalin/malachite, and should not  receive more than half doses of these chemicals. Live plants are also made of proteins... and will die if exposed to formalin. Formalin kills microbes indiscriminately, including nitrifying bacteria. Hence you will need to monitor the accumulation of ammonia and nitrite, and take steps to prevent their  exceeding 1.0 ppm (likely by massive changes of pre-conditioned water)." Thanks. <Formalin by itself is no more stressful than most any other meds in general, but with organic dyes like malachite green, the angels can respond badly. Watch closely... but I'm still saying full dose and standard QT protocol (daily water changes form the bare bottom of the tank to reduce larval parasites, etc). Anthony> <<RMF would heed the manufacturer's warning and treat only half dose.>> Marine tank questions, ich and anemone behavior 8/9/05 Hello, this is my first attempt at using a site such as yours, you do have lots of information. I have three questions: 1. Has anyone ever reported having ick breakout after feeding brine shrimp (frozen) mostly, I've had problems in both African and marine tanks now. <Yes... there are intermediate, resting stages of ich that have been found, photographed in with brine shrimp... dried, freeze-dried, live and frozen... One of the reasons I, others suggest rinsing in freshwater for a few minutes before feeding.> 2. Is it possible for inverts. to harbor ick and other nasty creatures, even after the fish are cured can the inverts. re-infect the fish. <Not likely, but possible... as the intermediate stages can wait... the rationale for separating these life forms during quarantine, treatment...> 3. Has anyone experienced an Atlantic anemone coughing up a white ball with what looks like eggs in it, after about 24hrs the ball breaks up and no sign of it can be found. what was it???? <Yes. Likely a reproductive event> Thanks for any help with these questions Suggestion: convert your articles into PDF so they can be downloaded for easy reference. <Good idea. Bob Fenner>  

Crypto and hyposalinity 8/9/05 Good Morning,    I have a 180 g fish only tank to which I recently added a emperor angel.  This angel is a beast.. aggressive and a great addition, now king of the tank ( others.. Naso tang, powder blue, majestic angel, Fiji Foxface, purple tang )  unfortunately, even though I used a QT for a month the display tank came down with crypto.   <No...> I have two questions.. I have a refugium and I have heard from the ecosystems site (M. Paletta ) that crypto can be difficult to eradicate when miracle mud is in use  Is this true ??? <More difficult, yes>     My second question: I treated the entire tank after taking the macroalgae out with hyposalinity ( SG 1.010 brought down slowly over 5 days )  Fish are all doing great.  I am feeding high moisture foods ( mysids, formula I, II )  How long should I, can I treat and is it likely that the crypto will return as a problem as  I bring the salinity back up SLOWLY? Thanks Jimmy <Almost certainly you will not be eradicating this parasite... optimized conditions, purposeful cleaners... you may achieve some sort of uneasy balance... Please read... on WWM re hyposalinity treatments, Cryptocaryoniasis... Bob Fenner>
Re: crypto and hyposalinity 8/9/05 Dear Bob,     Thanks for the reply on hyposalinity.  One last question.  ( 180 g FO tank )  I started the hyposalinity treatment after four fish in the tank came down with crypto. <Lowering spg will very unlikely effect a permanent cure...>   I plan on eventually putting LR in the tank.  I have read on WWM extensively.  Are there any other options for treating the display ( it currently has no inverts ) that will eradicate the crypto but not harm the biological filter bed. <Mmm, no> Currently all inhabitants are doing well, eating like pigs and are free of infection in SG 1.010  ( Naso tang, blue tang, majestic angel, emperor angel, Fiji Foxface ).  Should I continue with the hyposalinity or should I consider other options. <The latter> Will formalin wipe out my bacterial bed if used at the conventionally prescribed doses ? <Oh yes... a general biocide... crosslinks proteins... building blocks of all life on this planet... Do please read on WWM re marine ich... consider copper treatment... and soon. Bob Fenner> Thanks Jimmy
Re: crypto and hyposalinity 8/11/05 Dear Bob,    I am very thankful for your advice.  I would use copper to treat my fish but my experience with copper and nitrite sensitive angels ( emperor, majestic ) is not so good. <Better than losing your livestock though...>   Hyposalinity clears the ich in 5 days <... but does not remove it from the system...> but I am concerned about the long term eradication of ich from the system. <Ah good, me too> It seems to me that once these fish become afflicted with crypt then the battle is uphill.  Even with copper at adequate levels for the prescribed length of time in a QT recurrences do occur <Very rare... if the therapeutic dose is maintained...> and the fish are more apt to get a reinfection because of the immune suppressant effects of the copper.  Do you have personal experience with copper treatment of above species?   <Ah, yes... a very great amount> Should I run a QT with copper at all times in order to allow the biological cycle of the tank to mature  with copper ? <Posted... on WWM>      I think that for this go round I may need to rely on the hyposalinity ( sg1.010 ) ozone, UV sterilizer, frequent water changes, and garlic extreme / good nutrition get me through since my filter in the QT may take a hit if I add copper ( my fish have done so well and look to be disease free with the hypo, ozone, UV etc that I feel that I may be doing more harm than good by turning to copper.  Is my thinking off base on this issue i.e. do you think that I will regret this approach ? Thanks Jimmy <I do agree with you re cycling, copper and QT... But I would still go this route... rather than ping-ponging with Crypt... Bob Fenner>
Re: crypto and hyposalinity 8/12/05 Dear Bob,      After reading extensively on hyposalinity and crypt, and, of course, with your help, I am reaching the conclusion that eradication of crypt from the marine system can only be achieved with QT and copper treatment and letting the display lie fallow for two months. <There are a few other approaches... but none as assuredly successful> I was somewhat enchanted by Steve Pro's recommendation that hyposalinity is his #1 choice because it is easy on the fish. <... if only it worked>   I am beginning to realize that there is much controversy re: hyposalinity as a cure, but more often than not, the attestations as to its effectiveness are followed by reports of outbreaks 6-12 months later. <Or generally much sooner> I have a 180 g FO tank and I really want to do this right but I only have a 29g and 55g tanks set up as QT, neither of which have been cycled with copper so the addition of copper will disrupt the biological cycle of the tank/filter.  What is the best way to treat with copper so as not to disrupt my bio cycle ? <Minimal doses with a chelated formulation... twice daily testing... Bob Fenner>
Re: crypto and hyposalinity a thanks to the crew 8/12/05 Bob,     Now that I am convinced that hyposalinity may not achieve long term cure for the treatment of crypto, I am curious as to why you think it does not. <Historically it just hasn't... in the vast majority of cases.> I cannot see any signs of visible infestation in the fish that I have treated.   <... not visible to the naked eye> I suspect that the proponents of this method of treatment for marine ich would argue that hyposalinity is the equivalent of allowing the tank to be fallow.   <No... or not valid... Is there a difference between a present, though not observable infestation and none at all? Yes> Is there a "subclinical" or low grade infection that occurs even at low salinity that slows down but does not completely disrupt the life cycle of the parasite?   <Bingo... though, for clarity's sake, the term infection is used for infectious disease... bacteria, fungi... and not protozoans like Crypt> Would using hyposalinity with a Metronidazole or a malachite green formalin combo like Kordon's Rid Ich+ achieve the desired result ? <In what sort of treatment mode? As a dip? As long time immersion? Maybe... the point is to remove the feeding stages from their host fishes as well as destroy (here's the hard part) all intermediate stages... in well-established infestations, systems... this can be very difficult... lowering spg, elevating temperature in the infested systems themselves is of use in "speeding" up the metabolism, cycle of the parasite> As an aside I note that Kordon states that their product does not disrupt the bio cycle. is this true ? <Mmm, strictly speaking... are you referring to Malachite Green?... this is so... but indirectly, this use often does lead to a check to loss of nitrification. For Malachite AND Formalin, biological filtration is indeed kaput, finished> (It has been my experience to be wary of products that make this claim)      I must digress and take one moment to thank you for all of your help.   As a Biology Major and an MD with a background in pharmacology, I have found you and the crew at WetWebMedia to be an excellent source of information, sympathy, encouragement for those dedicated to the hobby.  As I have pursued the hobby through the years I have found myself reading more and more to seek a reasonable consensus of opinion amongst the experts rather than just believing the label or the LFS is always "right" Thanks and have a nice day  Jimmy <Thank you. Bob Fenner>
Re: crypto and hyposalinity: hypo does not work 8/15/05 Dear Bob:     I must say that as much as I initially resisted the concept that hyposalinity ( 1.010 ) does not work for marine crypto: I am now a believer that it is not the panacea that people once thought it would be. <Or have tried to promote it as such> I have a 180g FO tank that came down with crypt shortly after I added a gorgeous Emperor Angel. <... no quarantine?...> The first fish (no surprise) to be afflicted with this malady was a powder blue tang the others looked fine but who knows. <Ah, yes... good bio-indicators...> I quarantined this fish from the system in a 55 g tank and dropped the salinity to 1.010 in both the quarantine and the display.  I have written a few times questioning if hyposalinity is a reasonable treatment given the fact that fish in the display are doing so well with no overt signs of disease (I run a UV sterilizer as well as ozone as well as frequent water changes every other day in the display but I run a bare bones, but well cycled quarantine ). <Ah, good> It has been three weeks and today I noticed that my quarantined powder blue indeed has crypt while in a salinity of 1.010, subtle but still there.  I took therapeutic measures and he is swimming in copper now to the tune of a therapeutic dose and the rest is out of my hands.  So what do I do about the fish in the display that are all doing so seemingly well? <Am sure you already know the answer to this Jim...> Does combining hyposalinity with 5-nitroimidazoles make sense or would I just be wasting my time and money? <The latter my friend> What do people that keep reef tanks after they quarantine one diseased fish in a system that has other residents?  Thanks Jimmy <... you need to remove all fish life... treat all... leave the main system sans hosts... Bob Fenner>

Re: crypto and hyposalinity: hypo does not work  8/16/05 Bob,     I did quarantine the Emperor before for 1 month but still had the problem with the crypto. <Did you treat (prophylactically) with copper?> Is a 55 gallon quarantine with daily water changes for all the fish in the 180g display enough or am going to have problems ? <Can't tell... you just have to try, monitor and see> This is the only tank that I presently have set up for QT purposes ?  ( Fish = Large Emp Angel, Naso Tang, Majestic Angel, Foxface, Purple tang ) <These two angels together... not a good idea...> All fish are still eating and doing very well i.e. no exterior signs of disease.  Do I need another QT ? <Maybe>     Kordon's Rid Ich+ is said not to disturb nitrification ( this is a 11.5% formalin USP grade  4.25% and a zinc free chloride salt of malachite green .038% ) <... we've been over this? Formalin is a biocide... crosslinks peptides... did you not state you had some bio-medical academic background? Look up the MSDS information on this compound> I guess you would not recommend treating the main display with this? <...> Because ? <... posted on WWM: ...> it would not work ? or I would have trouble getting it out of the system after treatment done? You have been a big help separating wheat from chaff re this issue. And I will be patiently persistent Jimmy <Then read... http://www.wetwebmedia.com/formalinart.htm Please learn to/use the indices, search tool on WWM... Bob Fenner>

Crypt  8/31/05 Dear Bob,      I would request that you post this for others to read...If, that is, you agree. Make comments as you please. <Okay>      I would like to relay to the readers of this site my experiences with a recent Cryptocaryon outbreak in my FO 180 g display.  This tank has been in operation for approx 4 years and has been closed to new additions during that period of time.  No visible signs of disease were noted on the fish ( Powder Blue, Large Naso, Foxface, Purple tang, Macaroon Clown, Mated pair of perculas, One Damsel, Majestic Angel.  )  This was a disease free tank in every sense of the word.  All fish in this system were quarantined in my mother's garage, in copper at therapeutic doses for 6-8 weeks while we were waiting for our new house to be ready 4 years ago.   My mom's garage looked like a pet store with all of the tanks, and she hated it, but tolerated my craziness.  The day arrived when I finally set up the 180 and I introduced the fish slowly.  All fish did great after they settled down.  No fatalities. The clownfish have spawned multiple times in the system but the hermits ate the spawn.  No other additions after the initial introduction.      Recently, I looked over my noted and saw that two of my fish had been pets for over 7 years and they looked like they were slowing down a bit. (getting old)  They were eating fine,  a bit less active and slowly losing weight.  It also looked as if they had given up previous positions higher up in the pecking order of the tank to some of their younger tankmates.        I decided to go for adding an adult Emperor Angel. Oh my, and what a beautiful addition. This fish is awesome ! I QT'd him in hyposalinity in a well cycled 55 gallon tank.  The quarantine period was for approx 6 weeks total.  Initially the angel looked like he may have had mild crypt but visible signs of disease disappeared with the hyposalinity.  When the angel was introduced into the display, I even went to the task of reducing the salinity of the display to 1.010 for 6 weeks for what I thought would be extra assurance.  (Surprisingly, it has been 2 months and the angels have proven to be compatible, so far )Within 7 days of introduction my powder blue was infested with ich.  I moved him to the 55 gallon QT and treated with Cupramine to a value of .6 mg/l using fastest and SeaChem tests for copper.  All other fish were looking fine.      I wrote to Bob Fenner and asked for advice: he gave me the painful, but accurate message, that my display was infested with ich and that the only way to achieve eradication was to take fish out, treat them with copper and allow the 180g to lay fallow for 30-60 days.  I knew that I was now in a pickle in that I did not have adequate space in the QT for all of the fish in my display.       Though there were no visible signs of disease in the main display, I watched closely as I brought the salinity up from 1.010 to 1.024 over 10-14 days.  As I slowly brought the salinity up I noted that the tangs ( Naso and purple ) in the display did get a dusting of crypt.  I fed garlic extreme, and treated the water also.  Kick Ich did nothing.  The fish in the tank continued to do well ( eating, activity etc ) but as The fish seemed to ward off this minor outbreak on their own, so I took no drastic measures.  ( which, I know, is controversial ) As I raised the salinity more it became ever so clear that the tank was infested.  The salinity is now 1.024 and all inhabitants are doing well.  I have had no severe ich outbreaks and I have had no casualties. It is hard to see that there is any sign of ich infestation except in the early AM when I turn lights on.  Not surprisingly, where do you think I see a spot from time to time?  On a fish's belly, of course, because ich is in the aragonite substrate and seems to attach at night.  The fish do not look ill. Their immune system is obviously in tact. They eat out of my hand and they are the envy of my friends. ( I do not make a practice of feeding by hand, though )     My powder blue, on the other hand, is still alive in the QT, has the beginnings of HLLE, was really stressed out, but still eating throughout his entire ordeal.  Also, because I added the Cupramine slowly there was no disturbance in nitrification. His ich is cured.   I am now faced with the decision of daring to place him back in the display.  I know that tangs are especially susceptible to ich.      I do not have enough space for a larger QT nor can I set up another 55 g tank.  Plus I know that only a well established bacterial bed has a chance at surviving copper without major disturbance in nitrification.      To make things even more challenging, I have approx 150 lbs of beautifully cured live rock with red green and pink coralline algae that has been manicured and picked over by hermits and snails.  I really want to add it to my display, but if I have a crypt outbreak, what then ??? A lots of work ... Possibly some frustration.  I am thinking of taking the oldest fish out of the display ( purple tang, because he seems to be the most susceptible and always has a spot or two of ich, this fish is very old ~ I have had him for 10 yrs )        So here are my conclusions:  QT absolutely necessary ( which I already Knew )  Strongly consider keeping a QT operational at all times ( which I did, but not practical for many )  Strongly consider copper prophylaxis for appropriate fish  ( which I know is controversial, but something I will definitely do next time )  Hyposalinity is a great temporizer, if there is such a word.  Hypo buys you time and weakens the parasite, but it does not cure. ( I will use hyposalinity again but not without also using another form of treatment ) My Mud substrate for my refugium is now in the trash, because I think it makes eradication or control of ich from a system much more difficult <This is so> ( as if it weren't a challenge already)  Throughout this ordeal I performed aggressive water changes on the display tank and I turned the skimmer off.  Even without the mud a couple of fish with chronic HLLE have been cured of this malady.  ( since I stopped skimming, Iodine levels in the tank have been much more consistently in an acceptable range, whereas before, I think I was skimming off the iodine:  I will skim, but not 24/7 as I was doing before )      I now have a system that looks great to the naked eye in the middle of the day but I KNOW that there is crypt in the system, and I KNOW that if I add any fish to the system that I should expect to see some sort of acceleration of ich infestation within the display, <Yes> unless of course, we all get lucky and someone finds a cure.        Though disappointed at times, I do remain somewhat encouraged by my fishkeeping skills, in that there have been no fatalities.  All fish are still alive and appear well !!!!! Other suggestions will be happily accepted. Thanks Jimmy <Thank you for your careful accounting of facts, resolve. Bob Fenner> Fairy Wrasse with ich - alternate treatments 8/8/05 I have had a Cirrhilabrus rubriventralis wrasse in QT for 3 weeks now.  He has had mild ich from the get go so I took the salinity down to 1.011 measured with a lab grade hydrometer.  I thought we were over it but yesterday I looked in and he's a mass of white spots! I am tired of this and am going to treat the fish with copper, unless these fish are oversensitive.  Is this a good idea? <Fairy wrasses are at least somewhat sensitive to copper IMO. I'm not a big fan of it as it is. If it were my fish, I'd do freshwater dips from a QT tank near daily for 5 days while adding garlic and B12 to the water> cheers, Wayne Oxborough. Norway <With kind regards, Anthony>

Everyone Out! (Getting All Fishes Out From An Infected Tank)  08/08/2005 Hi guys, <Hi there! Scott F. your guy tonight!> My name is Matt and I'm from Sydney Australia. I'm currently battling ich in my 100gallon tank. I also have a 75gal that I've had up and running for about 18months, whereas the 100gal is about 8 weeks old. Now my question is; I have the majority of my fish in QT,  only a couple more to catch. I know inverts are fine to leave in the tank. But I have zebra moray eel that is in the 100gal. I know these guys cannot contract ich due to their protective mucus, so is it fine leaving it in the tank with the inverts for 4 weeks? I cant seem to find the answer anywhere. Your help is much appreciated. Matt <Well, Matt- Morays are rather resistant to parasitic infections, but I would still feel better about removing him for observation. Besides, not having the fish in the tank is one less potential "vector" for the future transmission of the disease. Get everyone out, if you ask me! Good luck in beating this disease! Regards, Scott F.>

Ick/Moving inverts 8/6/05 Hello, Have a little hippo tang in my 20g QT along with 2 peppermints, 1 cleaner shrimp, 1 feather duster, baby brittle star that hitchhiked on the 15 lbs of live rock.  All but the hippo have been in the qt for about 3 months.   Hippo, of course, showed ick at 6 days into qt.  Getting ready to treat (first time) and need to move the inverts out but worried if I stick them into my 90g display that could affect the fish there.  Suggestions on lowering the risk of transferring? <What risk?> I know they aren't "carriers" per se, but concerned that they may somehow transfer to my other tank whatever is affecting the hippo (pretty sure it's ick with little white grainy spots).   <The water itself may do this... I would isolate the invertebrates, quarantine them on their own for a few to several weeks> Any suggestions you would have would be great.  Tried to find the answer in the FAQs without success so far.  Read they can't be freshwater dipped, read they don't carry but wondered if I could be confident of that before moving. <Correct>   How low can the SG go for the hippo, lots of spots but looks happy without scratching, doesn't appear stressed at this point and eating well.  Thanks so much for your help. Julie <... Please read on WWM... re Paracanthurus disease, Crypt... hyposalinity... whatever you have in mind... Bob Fenner>

Attacking Ich...The Not-So-Fun (But Successful) Way! 8/5/05 Hi, <Hey there! Scott F. at the keyboard tonight!> I have a 110 gal. salt water tank with Anthias, oriental Sweetlips, clownfish, yellow tang, and a coral beauty.  I also have some inverts; Starfish, Shrimp, Lobster, Crabs and Snails.  I have recently had an outbreak of Ick.  Some of the fish have the white dots all over them, but you can only see them when my "blue" power compact light is on, but when all the power compacts are on, you can't see the dots.  Also, none of the fish are scratching themselves.  This is Ich, isn't it???? <Sounds like it may be...> Anyway, I went to a popular fish only store in my area and they gave me a bottle of Malachite Green, from Marine Enterprises Intl. Inc.  They, as well as the companies website, say that it is safe to use this with inverts, but your website article on this product states that its deadly to these. <It is not wise to use this stuff around inverts, IME.> What should I do???? <I would remove the affected fish and place them in a separate tank for treatment with an effective medication, such as copper sulphate or a formalin-based product. Let the display run "fallow", without fishes, for at least a month...Lots written on this technique right here on the WWM site!> I've read your articles on separating the fish into a quarantine tank for a month and fresh water dipping, but I really don't want to do any of that. <Okay...> That being said, what is the best solution to this parasite without removing anything from the tank???? <In my personal experience and opinion, I have yet to find a truly effective way to treat this illness in a display tank containing fishes and invertebrates. The risk of "collateral damage" is simply too great. I'm not a big believer in the so-called "reef safe" "medications"...For lots of reasons outlined here many times previously. It's not fun, but it's well worth the effort to remove the fishes from the display tank for treatment in a dedicated aquarium.> Is this Malachite Green the best solution??? <I would not use ANY medication in the display tank. Period. It simply is not a good move, IMO.> And again, Is it really safe like the company says it is??? <I wouldn't think of using this product (or any product) in a (mixed fish/invert) display tank...Just not the best move you can make, as far as I am concerned.> Thanks for your help. Sincerely, Jeff. <Glad to be of assistance, Jeff. I'm afraid that my recommendation is to take the course of treatment that you don't want to. I cannot recommend treating in the display tank. I wouldn't do it with my fishes, so I wouldn't tell you to do it! Best of luck to you! Regards, Scott F.>

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