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FAQs on Dips/Baths Rationale/Use

Related Articles: Dips/Baths, Methylene Blue, Formalin/Formaldehyde, Quarantine, Tank Troubleshooting, Toxic Tank Conditions, Environmental Disease (incl. Lymphocystis), Nutritional Disease, Infectious Diseases, Parasitic Diseases, Wound Management (/aquarists), A Livestock Treatment System

Related FAQs: Dips/Baths 1, Dips/Baths 2, Dips/Baths 3, & FAQs on Dip/Bath: Methods, Tools, Adjusting pH, Additives, Iodine/ide/ate, Lugol's Use, Methylene Blue, Formalin/Formaldehyde, Dangers Will Robinson, Products, & Best Quarantine FAQs, Quarantine Acclimation 1, Acclimating Invertebrates, Acclimation of Livestock in the Business

Are dips/baths for all organisms? No... Are they always the best route to go? For prevention, likely yes, for treatment, not necessarily.

hi yall. I REALLY need your help real quick before I screw this up. Dips, baths for Angel, Wrasse     3/16/16
Hi guys-
<Hey Lis!>
I know ya'll are busy, but I thought I would still try and reach you. I'm getting both a big beautiful Melanurus Wrasse and a Singapore Angel fish this Friday. I was going to just give them a freshwater dip and put him in
my DT rather than QT them like I do all my other fish. What do you think of this idea?
<Am a strong supporter of this alternative protocol, for quite a few groups/families of fishes; including many Labrids. Do read here re adjuncts to dips/baths: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/dips_baths.htm
<Bob Fenner>
re: hi yall. I REALLY need your help real quick before I screw this up     3/16/16

Excellent! I can't believe you replied to me YAY! Okay I will read the article, and send all future emails to crew@wetwebmedia.com!!!! thank u so so much!!
<Heeee! Cheers dear. BobF>
re: hi yall. I REALLY need your help real quick before I screw this up. Dips/Baths      3/17/16

Ah okay, so I read the article on Dips/Baths- just a few more questions and I'm done- didn't see this in the article
1. other than temperature acclimation while still in their bag, do I drop acclimate them at all with water from my tank PRE=DIP?
<IF the temp. they're going in to is no more than 8 F. different, no need for temp. adjustment>
2. I'm going to have to buy the Meth Blue cuz I won't have time to mix it up myself. Can I find it at my LFS?
<Oh yes; commonly offered by its own name>
3. what's the AVERAGE recommended time (minutes) for a fresh water bath with Meth Blue? I know this varies, but what is the MINIMUM per say?
<Mmm; tres minutos. BobF>

Attn: bob-achilles tang; and Trematode f'     11/29/14
Hey fellow name sharer,
<Hey Rob>
As discussed before, I restarted my 155 fowlr august 4, and the tank has been cycled since midway point September.
My lfs was having. 25 percent off sale this week, in which I took a purple tang. It died shortly after, so after explaining situation, he have me the credit to use on it, and I picked up my two favorite fish, Aussie tusk and an Achilles tang.
Unlike my previous achilles which I killed while trying to quarantine (ammonia) this one is larger, in the 4 to 5 inch range, and has been at the store since august. Has not yet showed signs of ich at the store, and I know the store runs a low level of copper.
<Ah yes; most all LFS do>

Once in my tank, he ate right away, and is very active. Later that night I noticed just one of his eyes appeared to be foggy (thought it was flukes) but after More observation, it's a blue tint, on just the one eye. I know after reading achilles can have some shades of Blue on them, but being it is just one, I am not sure.
<I wouldn't panic>
My first instinct was a fw dip, or Prazi pro, but looking back at my mistakes, over reacting, I did nothing.
I know they are sensitive fish, and not cheap, would you say the laid back approach here is the way to go? Or is one eye always an indication of an issue, whether it be bacterial, flukes etc.
<I do like dips (short term baths) of pH adjusted freshwater (aerated if RO or doing a bunch of fishes); with formalin if you have it... for these (Acanthuroid) fishes. They almost always sport a bunch of Trematodes coming from the wild; or mixed in with fishes from same>

Thanks again for your time. I hit an all time low this summer with fish trying to be a hero, and want to change my approach for the better going forward.
Thanks bob
<Welcome. B. Fenner>
Re: Attn: bob-achilles tang     11/29/14

Hey bob,
Thanks for the input, always appreciated .
Upon getting home from work early tonight I devoted my time to paying close attention to the eye of the achilles. These tangs move a lot and often, so getting a good view is tough.
While looking at this eye, I saw little oval shaped pieces on the eye,
much to my displeasure. I believe them to be flukes. I did not fw dip this fish in fear if killing it just as what happened with the purple tang a week ago.
<As prev. mentioned... I ALWAYS do>

I knew the "just having different eye color" was wishful thinking. I can try to catch fish tomorrow and fw dip, but I do have about 175 lbs of rock.
Being I am running a therapeutic (sp) level of Cupramine , could I shut My skimmer off and run one or two courses of Prazi pro as well for the flukes?
<You could... there may be water quality issues from the Prazi killing off a good deal of Vermes biomass... you might want the skimmer on>
I waited about 6 hours to make sure my eyes weren't fooling me. He also has what looks like mini seeds (white) on his black body.
<.... sigh... too likely Trematodes as well>
And if caught, for a fw dip, is taking two gallons of fresh ro, pumped with a strong pump for an hour, pinch of reef buffer the trick? I have a pinpoint but can throw it a lot further than I can trust it. I just don't want a repeat of last week . Thanks again and hope your not experiencing the 24 degree weather we have!
<... no thanks! It's time, perhaps past-time for me to suggest you getting, using a simple microscope. B>

Seastar. Not dipping      7/10/14
I know generally you cannot freshwater (pH adjusted) inverts but can you dip Seastars say for 2 or 3 minutes?
Thank you in advance.
<I would not do this... IF you're concerned re transferring (vectoring) pathogenic disease, I would isolate/quarantine the Asteroid/s enroute to the main/display for a few weeks. This almost always "breaks the cycle", lowering virulence.
Bob Fenner

treating fish based on dip results    1/4/14
Dear Crew,
Is it a good idea to treat newly purchased fish based on microscopic examination  of freshwater dip/Methylene blue water (if a specific pathogen can be identified) or is it best to wait (21 days in quarantine) for symptoms to show up?
<I am a huge advocate for the trade/industry to do this work on all wild-collected stocks. BobF>

FW dipping 3/28/13, flukes, Prazi use in DTs/Reefs        3/28/13
Hi crew!  I believe I have some of my fish have gill flukes in the main tank. I have a Flame Centropyge in a QT and did a dip on him today....holy cow!!! It was disgusting! He had 20-30 flukes on him and I never saw them on the fish. Anyway, I want to dip the fish from the main tank but I don't know if any of them are contraindicated for freshwater dips. Occupants are:
Solarensis Wrasse, Canary Blenny, Hi Fin Red Banded Goby, Sleeper Goby and  a Halichoeres leucoxanthus.  The Canary Blenny and the Sleeper Goby have been scratching for over a week but no one has spots. Of course the dip will be pH, temp matched and aerated. Thank you!  Jennifer
<These fishes/species are all good candidates for dipping, short immersion baths. Bob Fenner>
Re: FW dipping 3/28/13    

Thank you, Bob
<Welcome Jenn! B>
Re: FW dipping 3/28/13

Hey Bob,
 Just went to check on the Flame in the QT and he is hanging out at the top of the water right under the HOB filter. He's been in the QT 2 weeks. Is this normal considering all the flukes that came off of him?  Jenn
<Not unusual behavior... small volumes, being stressed by handling... B>
FW dipping 3/29/13

Thanks Bob. I didn't think he would make it through the night but so far he has. I have a issue with the main tank. Ok, here goes: I think some of the fish in the main tank have flukes.
<Trematodes are very common (ubiquitous almost) on marine fishes... some are quite species, genus specific; others more general in their parasitism>
 Reason I think this is 3 days after adding the Canary Blenny he started to scratch on the sand. A few days later the sleeper goby started to scratch, although he stopped a day or so later. Then the yellow wrasse scratched a couple of times.  Now the Sol<o><not a>rensis, who is like a dog, is hiding a lot. They are all still eating, no spots and all but the Blenny are hiding.  This has been going on for 8 days. I dipped the Canary Blenny and it looked like little worms were in the bucket but I can't be 100% sure they were worms. Also there were things that looked like little flukes, again not positive. I did dip the Goby today for 5 minutes. I didn't see anything come off him that I could identify except what I think is sand.
Finally, my question, should I 1. QT all the fish and treat with PraziPro?
2. FW dip fish, put back in main tank and keep watch? There is definitely something going on in the tank, I just can't figure out what it is. Sorry for the long email and thank you!
<You could try the Prazi... toxic to all worms... B>
Re: FW dipping 3/29/13

I've read that some have used PraziPro in a reef tank with no repercussions,
<Mmm, not likely "none">
 however that makes me nervous. Have you heard that it can affect the biological filter? My LFS told me that it could even though the PraziPro bottle says it won't.  Your thoughts?
<... won't affect nitrifiers, denitrifiers directly... but killing off large numbers, biomass of Vermes can have bad consequences... One should be prepared to counter, or move intentional livestock. B>
Re: dipping     3/29/13

I do have quite a few Vermes, red, pink and yellow ones I'd like to keep.
So it looks like they are going into the QT with the Flame and all will get PraziPro.  Thank you kind sir:) Jenn
<Ah, good, and welcome. BobF>

Spiral swimming     3/1/13
Hi crew!
 I purchased a Yellow Watchman Goby on Wednesday. I put him in the QT and he seemed to do ok.
<Mmm, most all goby specimens (all species) are best expedited... along w/ blennies and other groups, these fishes take more than a beating, stress, starving being waylaid in quarantine...>
 Of course he didn't eat Wednesday or Thursday.  I did a 2 gallon water change Thursday (20 gallon QT) and checked water parameters. Ammonia and Nitrates were 0. Nitrites were .25.

This morning he was listing on his side and swimming in spirals.  He would then stop, lying on his back. Then swim again in spirals.  I quickly made up a container with water from the display tank, matching pH, salinity and temp, put an air stone in it and moved the fish.  He died within minutes. 
What could this have been?
<In a word, stress... too much threat from capture to handling, to being in too small a volume w/ no sand to hide/burrow in>
I searched WWM and the Internet and came up with no answers.  Was this my fault or did he have something wrong? Thank you! Jennifer
<... as stated. I would have even skipped dip/bathing and place this fish in the main/display. Bob Fenner>
Re: Spiral swimming     3/1/13

Hi Bob,
 Thank you for getting back to so quickly:)  I did have a container with sand from the main tank. I figured if he needed to be treated I could just take the container out.  The LFS had just received him that day...guess I should have let him stay there a while and rest up. 
<Yes; this resting IS the most important aspect, gain to be had from initial "isolation" (quarantine)>
As far as the nitrites I have read that marine fish can withstand much higher concentrations with no ill effects.  Lesson learned.
<Ah yes>
I am extremely wary of placing anything in the main tank.  I had a outbreak of either Ich or velvet and just put fish back into tank on Wednesday after 2 months fallow.  I even have a pair of Banded Coral Shrimp in a QT. That being said would I/they be better off going into the main tank now?
<Yes... Gobioids, Blennioids are generally/by and large bereft of external parasite problems on arrival. Again, if this were a commercial concern (importer: wholesale, transship... to retail) I would be batch processing most all new fishes with dips/baths per the protocols detailed on WWM... to greatly reduce the likelihood of pest, parasite introduction>
  Thank you again Bob! I have learned so much from you:)
<Ahh, a pleasure to share, aid your efforts Jennifer. BobF>
Re: Spiral swimming    3/1/13

I didn't think dips were recommended for Gobioids.
<Dips (or short duration baths) generally w/o any irritating additions (e.g. Formalin) are okay usually... One has to "do triage" on opening bags, to determine the likelihood that such procedures are worth more than not>
 I did quite a few dips an baths while dealing with the disease outbreak in January so I feel pretty prepared to do so going forward.
I'm not sure if your "yes" was to putting the pair of shrimp into the main tank or to putting the Goby into the main tank.  Jennifer
<The shrimp in the main tank AND the Goby. BobF>
Re: Spiral swimming    3/1/13

Understood and great info!! The shrimp will go in main tank today (Goby did not make it). Thank you again and I will let you get back to whatever incredible expedition you are on:) Be chatting soon:) Jennifer
<At home cooking for hash groups! Cheers, B>

White Spot. Prevention  - 1/25/13
Hi Crew, I would like to help others in my situation. Having fought for years with marine white spot and finally clearing my tank, however I am restricted on where I can buy my fish and the retailer's fish often have white spot even if it is not in the visible stage.
<Common... w/ many/most all sources>
 So over the last few months every new fish I have dipped in pH adjusted to 8.3 freshwater for around 4 minutes and have had no problems at all. I would recommend this to everyone, perhaps less for scaleless fish, tangs etc. I agree quarantine is better but not everyone has a separate tank for many reasons.  Regards, Adam.
<I do concur... have written articles, in books re... Oh, yes; and is posted/archived on WWM. B>

To Dip or not to Dip... 6/15/10
Dear Bob and Crew,
<Hey Ang>
Again, thanks so much for your valuable time and wisdom! I appreciate the almost religious act of posting the dailies-
<Heeeeee! Tis an experience... at times requiring "the patience of a saint!">
what a treat to read through the legitimate questions, ridiculous rants, and world class hobby advice. You are amazing!
<I'll say!>
I have been reading Bob's thoughts regarding dipping and quarantining specimens and understand that he often asks, "Does the ends justify the means?" meaning, it is important to look at the overall picture of the specimen before simply caring out dipping/quarantining procedures (please correct me if I have misinterpreted).
<You have it spot on>
I will be stocking my established 65 gallon reef with fish soon and wanted to see if you agree with these procedures for these specific fish. I was planning on quarantining (3 weeks) some and dipping some in freshwater, pH adjusted/buffered w/methylene blue based on my research:
Bicolor Blenny- no quarantine, will dip
2 Tank Bred Ocellaris, quarantine and dip
Royal Gramma, quarantine and dip
Sailfin Blenny, no quarantine, will dip
Green Clown Goby (I do have one Acropora), no quarantine, no dip
6 Line wrasse, quarantine and dip
<Looks good dear>
Thank you!!
p.s. My other two reefs are doing very well thanks to your thoughtful advice!
<Ahhh! Thank you again, BobF> 

Re: To Dip or not to Dip...   6/16/10
Thank you! Just a follow up question if you would be so kind: you do agree that it is ok to dip the Blennies?
<Most larger species, specimens, yes... Some smaller/ish ones that are too "beat", thin... I'd skip along>
I wanted to make sure that their scales (or lack of) would not be harmed in the process. Also, as far as dip length, I thought that no longer then 1 minute for each specimen would be safe due to their small size.
<Best to judge by observation... constant monitoring while in the dip/bath.>
I hope that you enjoyed jury duty! Glad that it wasn't me!
<Am on a case now... is interesting. BobF>
Thank you!

Fungus on Palythoa... Dipping madness 4/16/10
My pink Palythoa colony has fungus on it,
<Really? Unusual>
I bought it 3 weeks ago dipped it in Lugol's then FW rinse.
<Straight Lugol's?!>
They opened up after a day or so. They were quite healthy till I found fungus growing over polyp, <Actually fungus here is exceedingly rare...>
other polyps were open. I did a 10% H2O2 dip in DT water for 5 minutes. The colony opened up in like 2-3 hours & fungus was gone. After a day I noticed a larger breakout of fungus(on 3-4 polyps) this time I did a 15 % H2O2 dip for 5 minutes. Now I still see some strands of fungus on some polyps, other polyps've opened. Should I repeat the dip again ?For how long ? & What concentration?
Parameters are
No other inhabitant.20G with 35 lbs LR 5 month old tank.2x20 W CFL & 2x20 W T4 Actinic. I tried changing position of colony from lower to higher flow.
<Where are the spaces between your sentences? I would stop dipping here and start looking into root cause/s... water quality, allelopathy... read here re: http://wetwebmedia.com/cnidcompppt.htm
and the linked files above in this ppt. series... Oh and do send along some well-resolved images when you can. Bob Fenner>

Dip Question: Dip after QT Not necessary 11/13/2009
<Hi Jenny.>
Hopefully all is well, and thank you in advance for answering my question.
I've had two Clarkii Clownfish in a Quarantine Tank for 4 weeks. Both are eating extremely heartily (fed a varied diet twice a day and turn nothing down) and show no signs of external disease. Both are also quite energetic.
<Good for you for quarantining.>
I'm getting ready to move them to my Display Tank and was wondering if I should re-dip them in a freshwater and Methylene Blue. My obvious thought is that I should, just for precautions, but I do not want to stress out the fish to where it may hurt/kill them. Below is the background on why I'm so worried about this.
When I initially acclimated them to the QT, I dipped them in fresh water with Methylene Blue mixed in it. Upon putting them into the blend, one almost immediately starting lying on his side and stopped moving. So in turn, I moved them into the QT after about a minute of being in the mixture. For the three days after that, they didn't eat and barely moved, so I feared the worse as I'm sure most people would. After about a week, however, the one that didn't lie on his side recovered completely, while the other one picked at her food and would usually take a bite and spit it out.
After a week, she started eating heartily, like the other fish was.
<You can dip them again if you really want to , but it is not necessary.>
,As this will be posted in the dailies, I'm putting in a link to dips and baths for others to read.
Thanks again in advance (from me and my Clarkiis).
<My pleasure, and again, good for you in practicing both dips and QT!.>

Cleaner shrimps Death!, FW Dipping Shrimp 8/7/08 Hello. <Hi> I have recently bought a Cleaner Shrimp from LFS and a Blue Hippo Tang along with it, the problem is, is that as I was observing them in the bag I realized there was a high chance the Tang recently suffered from Ick, so I floated the bag (15min) than gave them both a freshwater dip (8.3 ph). <Uh oh, shrimp cannot handle fresh water dips, it is quite deadly to them.> After about 3-5 minutes I put them into the QT for further inspection. The Tang swam around with joy, but the cleaner just sat there (as if it were shocked). <Osmotic shock.> If my tang is alive after the dip why should my shrimp be any different? <Because the FW dip has the same effect on shrimp as it does the ich parasite.> (water parameters are perfect sg 1.025, alk 4meg/L, Cal 440ppm, mag1300ppm, ph8.3, phos amm nIte undetectable, nAte <0-0.2, tanks running stable for 2 years) Thank you for your time, Serop. <Be aware that FW dips are not cures of ich, the tang will need to be treated in the QT.> <Chris>

Alternative treatment for a common marine parasite... Commercial Crypt remedies, prevention  - 07/19/08 Hello, I was wondering if anyone on the team has had any good experience with giving a marine fish with crypt a freshwater bath in place of a more 'solid' technique, such as copper treatment or hyposalinity (not that hypo is Bob's favorite)? <Some folks report success with such... perhaps their trials involve fishes with only superficial infestations... maybe these are principally only symptomatic...> I'm more of a Cupramine guy myself (in a separate treatment tank), but it seems my employer would like me to use freshwater baths exclusively in the main display / selling tanks which also house invertebrate life. <Mmm... I strongly suggest that they, you do a bit of further considering here... I would do FW baths on arrival (pH adjusted, with formalin if a commercial setting)... and even better to best, keep all incoming fish livestock quarantined for a few weeks before showing, offering it to the public... I would NOT mix fish and invertebrate livestock in a wholesale or retail setting... period> No option for separate treatment in a different tank. So while not my favorite option it will probably still give results and just wanted to fine tune it with some input. If you could tell me your frequency of the bath, duration of the bath you find effective. <Won't be... like the idea of invading countries, murdering their citizens to "make people free", this idea is contrary to reality. How to put this another way... it won't work> And if you combo it with gravel vacuuming - water change, the frequency and percentage of water changed. If you use any other methods with it such as melafix <... API should be sued back to the stone ages for this and other faux products and their promotion. Really. Have stated this often and loudly enough. This product is garbage> for bacterial infections of crypt wounds or cleaner gobies / shrimp to lending a helping hand, or anything else which might contribute to a recovery. <All this is gone over and over on WWM> I was considering fw bath repeated daily for 14 days, <... no... too much time, trouble, and stress on the fish livestock. Ridiculous> 7 min duration, gravel vacuuming bottom of tank 5 gallons out of 60 every fourth day or so, melafix dosed daily, <Please...> few cleaning shrimp there for luck. <Don't rely on luck...> Considering use of a U.V. sterilizer instead of melafix, but not likely. Trading out treatment of secondary infections for a unknown increased destruction of the parasites free swimming stage. experience and suggestions appreciated, and thank you for your time, Jonathan <Thank you for sharing Jonathan. A note to browsers through time... this is actually an indicative case, window into the thinking, operation of the trade... A reminder that many folks, though honest, of good intent, don't really know much re the science of actual husbandry of ornamental aquatics. Bob Fenner>
Re: Alternative treatment for a common marine parasite, Crypt  07/20/2008
Again my hand is forced by my employer's policy, ie p*tco. <Mmm, do know that I worked at corp... as a consultant/buyer for this co. 91-94... to bring in/make sense of aquatic livestock... Quite an ordeal> I don't agree with the policy and have been close to walking out of door, and have been saddened by the loss of life that could have been prevented through dedicated quarantine / treatment systems. <I... empathize> Either you quit / walk out or try to make the broken toy work for spoiled child. Have had results on using melafix to clear up bad eyes and slight bacterial damage, not as a treatment for crypt as some people desire it to be. There was one post by someone who was using the daily freshwater bath method from your crew, the individual who received this suggestion responded by saying something to the effect of "wow, everyday? That's harsh", to which the crew replied <so is copper> <Yes> The fish has to be returned to the same tank it came from, ie the infested tank. One could give the fish a freshwater bath and put it into a different tank with healthy fish, but its likely that bath won't sterilize the animal of it and it will get the others sick. The freshwater bath / gravel vacuum technique is used by others I have read, usually as a hell-bent way of "I'm definitely not using a separate treatment tank", "I don't want to treat the main display with any medication or altering of the salinity", "I can't afford a sterilizer which may or may not anything", and agreed the cleaner shrimp are manly pretty placebos. <... I encourage you to make a presentation... ask for some time to meet with the store, then Regional (Op.s) Manager... to in turn present your input, ideas to corporate/San Diego... to change whatever policy. Particularly "On Arrival" acclimation/baths to largely prevent the introduction of these parasites, their establishment in your systems> The variables I can control are how often I give the bath and its duration. How frequent I gravel vacuum the bottom of the tank and how much water I take out. I do remember another member of WWM crew claiming to have effected a cure of a flame angel by daily vacuuming of a 10 gallon bare bottom tank 50% premade saltwater. <It/this can be done... but does take dedication, time... You seem to understand the underlying principles> I can't do that volume with a 60, but I can do its frequency if there is results. In this limited situation Would freshwater bath every 3rd or 4th or 5th day with daily vacuuming be more appropriate? <Yes> As for freshwater baths upon arrival, I have done those, <Ah, good... with formalin and aeration I hope/trust> and continue to do so for tangs and fish that frequently have this problem. But even in a tank that contains only fish delivered that week, and has had no previous problem for months, to which all were given proper freshwater baths crypt still does break out, so while doing proper fresh water baths on arrival probably reduces the frequency of its occurrence its probably not stone cold guarantee you won't get it. The last paragraph in your reply is understandable considering the items I suggested. Its not that I want to do them its that I'm handcuffed to poor equipment and policy. Have risked my job and changed things and gotten good results using a 'communal copper treatment tank' for those who developed problems (ie crypt). And even that is not an answer to all the various and different problems that can present itself. I just don't have enough dedicated treatment tanks, allowances to recovery all that can be recovered. Not that I lack the knowledge to do so. Sorry to go on, No one on the crew has any recommendations for this compromised procedure? Frequency/duration of bath, frequency, percentage of gravel vacuum water change? <Five-seven minutes... daily, all the gravel vacuumed> I think 'ridiculous' was what I first thought about doing this as an alternative to a more proven technique. <Just... not something I want to encourage carte blanche (on the Net)... as a likely procedure that will be successful for all... too much work, too stressful, too likely to not work> cheers, hand cuffed employee <Perhaps a move/stint in an independent shop... Bob Fenner>

Re: Acclimation procedure  3/30/08 Hey Crew, I know that I, as well as many other people, rely on you guys for help. You supply us with a wealth of info and from time to time are given some thanks. I just wanted to drop a note to say you guys are providing a great service for us fish/reef geeks. I have read and followed many of your recommendations, (including Bob F), and must thank you under separate cover. A recent example that demonstrates my gratitude is Bob's recommendation regarding acclimation procedures. I have utilized blue meth combined with aqua nova on the acclimation of all of my new fish additions and thankfully have had no problems since. Just wanted to thank you guys for the education and the great service you are providing. As always I look forward to future correspondence. Frank <Thank you Frank... for taking the time, making the effort. Your kind words are encouraging. BobF>

Re: sick clownfish? Now, Dips/Baths...   2/21/08 Crew, This really isn't an area have I gathered much experience in, having my LFS/wholesaler QT and treat for me before I collect - feeling slightly inadequate, can I ask one of you guys with the relevant experience field? Mike I, WWM <Okay. RMF responding> Mike, I read your recommended links. I am a little confused. In using Methylene Blue do you utilize fresh RODI water, (since the article does say fresh water but later lists "new or system water")? <For dips? New, treated water... RO/DI is fine if aerated... otherwise has no oxygen...> {I guess you could mean net of salt}. What is the prescribed dosing, (Meth vs. gal of RODI)? <Just "very blue"... the stock concentrations vary... But/and Methylene Blue is very safe to use at high dosage> "about ten mils of this solution used per approx one gallon of dip" does this mean 10 milliliters? <Mmm, maybe... again, given commercial concentrations vary... Just so blue you can't easily see the bottom of the container...> The article also mentions that you could purchase pre-made, where might one find this? <Pre-made what?> Lastly, do you recommend dipping as part of the acclimation process. <I do... commercially... for home hobbyists, buying local stock... quarantining ahead... or in transit, such dips/baths are a judgment call...> In other words when you bring a new fish home from the LFS you would dip first in a Meth solution that is the same temp and ph of your main display or would you first acclimate the fish by lets say the drip method for a couple of hours. <Either first, enroute to quarantine, and/or on the way from there to main/display tanks> This way the ph and water temp of the shipping bag is close or equal to your display water and then dip in the solution? <Mmm, very important to respond to this clearly, completely: Best to measure said pH, temperature... IF the pH is much different (esp. higher in your system than the shipping water) OR there is any discernible free ammonia in the shipping water, best to match the pH or have it slightly lower (this is mainly a commercial, importer concern... or with folks moving, buying aquatic life that is/has been bagged for hours duration... And "rinse out" the mixed shipping/transit water, with that of the system pH over time... Covered under "Guerilla Acclimation Techniques" on WWM> {2 step process/acclimation followed by dipping}. Don't you feel that the fish is stressed moving from the LFS to the shipping bag to the acclimation procedure then to dip and QT? <Yes> Only to be moved at a later date into the main display. Can the fish survive all of this? <Oh yes... and you can be spared (along with other livestock) the troubles of bringing in pests and parasites...> I understand that if we don't take precautions then we put the entire main display tank at risk & of course the fish if it has any disease. But I am just wondering if all these procedures adds to the stress of the animal and in and of itself can increase mortality rates. <Is a concern... as you well voice/state... Hence my comment re "judgment calls"... Not all livestock can stand, nor benefits from such dipping/bathing... IF the animals are too weak, best to accelerate their placement (in quarantine), allow to "harden" (rest up)... and consider such prophylactic measures on moving further> Thanks for all the info, I look forward to your reply, Frank <Welcome. Bob Fenner>

Marine dip & bath and chemical uses therewith, and nitrates Dear Bob, <Howdy> I have been marine fish ( mainly angels and tangs ) hobbyist for almost a year now. <Congrats> Having read your article dips/baths and acclimating livestock; guerilla techniques, plus faq, confusion still arise, thus, question need to be address to clarify. <Okay> You mentioned fresh water dip ( 5 to 10 minutes ) most effective. Thus, one hour bath with extra medication (malachite & erythromycin) only as an alternative? <Mmm, this is a bit long for almost all marine species> Since fresh water dip eventually shock the fish, no need to acclimate the water chemistry, only temperature (warmer preferably). Is PH necessary need to be adjusted? <Yes to pH adjustment... this is mentioned in the articles and FAQs repeatedly... match the bag water... elevate over time... usually simple sodium bicarbonate will do...> You mentioned Methylene blue only act as an oxygenating agent, meaning if I use aerator, I can skip Methylene blue? <You can... but is a safe, worthwhile addition> However, you also mentioned Methylene blue and fresh water eliminate itch, velvet, fungus, flukes, etc., is the fresh water do the part? Or the Methylene blue? Or the combination? <Mostly the freshwater... the Methylene Blue does help however. Have you read this: http://wetwebmedia.com/methblueart.htm> I had many reading saying both itch and velvet cant be eliminate during the hosting and dividing up period.  Only at the time they swim up to find a new host it can be eradicate / kill with most medication.  So, is it the osmotic shock that really kill the itch and velvet even during their hosting period? <Yes... given these are not "too" embedded, too numerous...> I tried fresh water dip often time (without Methylene blue) with duration of minimum 6 minute, a lot of times I saw those parasite still attach (already dead or still alive?) to the fish, and multiple at later time. Is this mean some parasite survive the osmotic shock? Even fungus remain after the fresh dip, why? <The most important factor here... the state of health/disease of the host fishes at that time... they were too challenged> Contaminated from else where ? <Yes! From collection, holding... a lack of feeding, water pollution, too long in the bags, in transit> I think I am careful enough to separate tools, wash the quarantine tank after use, start with new water. <Yes... it reads/sounds like you know what is going on> The one hour bath you mentioned eight drop of Methylene blue can be added to one gallon of the saltwater. You mentioned malachite green and erythromycin can be added as well, but did not mention how many drop? <Please see WWM re the issues of actual treatment concentrations... for Malachite here: http://wetwebmedia.com/malachitegreen.htm> And with all these mix up together I can still bath the livestock for a minimum of one hour? <With attention to aeration, temperature control, yes> Having been almost a year of marine hobbyist I have been able to keep most fish alive nowadays (after so many dying fish at the early stage). There is one thing I still unable to manage, the nitrate level remain quite high 150 level. <This is too high...> I change water every 3 week with 15% water change.   <Mmm, well... you need to change much more, and more frequently> I tried Sera bio denitrator, but has to feed everyday. I skip using it, now trying Seachem denitrator with canister filter running at slow flow, but has not been success so far.  Can I start feeding the nitrate bacteria with sugar? If so, how much  Should I put? <... these anaerobic digestion units rarely work... I would look to other technologies, techniques... am sure you've read this: http://wetwebmedia.com/nitratesmar.htm > Or can I use Sera Nitrafluid as it do the same purpose as sugar?  But I read Sera instruction not to pour Nitrafluid direct into the tank. <I would not put either directly into the tank... these need to be drip-fed into the anaerobic chamber (the canister filter) to be of use... you can experiment here... but I would go with a refugium, DSB, more live rock....> Appreciate your attention, Regards, Sumadi <Keep studying my friend. Bob Fenner>

Naso et al. not for reef tanks? Merits of dips/baths 6/31/05 Matt from Critter Cabana in Newberg here, We have a customer who was told by another local fish store that his Naso tang and a couple other fish needed to be pulled out of his reef tank because water parameters were very unstable in a reef tank due to the necessary chemical and mineral supplements in a reef system. <Huh?>    This seemed odd to me, but it came from the person who most people in the Portland area consider the local authority on fish health issues, just curious if you knew where he was coming from on this.   <Wacky in my book/s> Another strange recommendation, I know that most if not all of the wet web crew highly recommends dips as preventative disease control and acclimation into the quarantine system, and it has been the only success we have had with ich control here at the store.  Anyway, we won't offer guarantees for customers unless they use our recommended Fw dip acclimation.  Well, the other local stores in the area have caught wind of this policy and are telling our customers basically that we are nuts and that no respectable marine aquarist would ever perform such an activity. <Mmm, I disagree... dips/baths were S.O.P. in our retail stores... are so at the best wholesalers on the planet (Quality Marine in Los Angeles, Tropical Marine Centre in the UK), collectors...>   Are your thoughts pretty strong on this issue as in its hands down the best way to acclimate?  Is the dip some sort of rogue method?  Or is it a professional standard?   <Is posted on WWM... hobbyist to commercial> I'm hoping to share this email with customers to provide a simple authoritative answer on some long standing arguments.   Matt <Glad to share my opinions, experiences... first and other hand. Bob Fenner>

Quarantine and Dipping of Acropora 7/14/05 Hi, I have read recommendations to dip all new Acroporas in ReefDip, FlatwormExit and  Lugol's (I presume separately?). <...>   We have several frags in quarantine for 4 weeks prior to entry into the tank (for ich as well as other parasites).  During that time, I have examined them every few days with a magnifying glass and don't see any bugs at all (and the color looks very good).  A few of the frags have harmless commensal crabs (smooth shells).  I hate to hurt the crabs by doing a dip and don't want to add unnecessary stress to the corals.  If examined regularly for 4 weeks and nothing looks out of the ordinary, are the dips still necessary or could the corals be pronounced "bug free?"   Thanks in advance! - Doug   <I would not use any of these or other "dips" with quarantined corals unless I observed trouble that warranted such. Bob Fenner>

Re: Quarantine and Dipping of Acropora 7/14/05 That is what I thought.  I just wanted to make sure that Redbugs, etc. didn't have some sort of long cycle where they might lay in wait more than the 4 weeks. <Nah! You'd see them by then> Thank You! <Welcome. Bob Fenner, soon to have a contract on him for debunking chemical products in the trade/hobby>

Bobbing for ich... important, interesting methods for avoiding, treating external parasitic (mostly) complaints of marine fishes  - 01/12/2006 Hello, <Hi there> Could you help clear something up.  Will a freshwater bath on a marine fish destroy some of the encysted parasites of ich or velvet? <Often so, yes... this is posted... on WWM...>   I get conflicting information on this.  At the store I work at, we do keep copper in the water for parasite control in our marine section. <Very common practice in the trade> So when the parasite drops off and the swarmers bust out they will shrivel up and die. <That is the hope> But if I could give the fish some relief from the load of parasites it currently has on it, I would like to do that. <You are wise here... my urgings for prophylactic dips in the industry... from collectors forward, have been emphatic and constant going on three decades... Please see WWM re "Guerilla Acclimation"...> Giving the fish a pH adjusted temperature adjusted freshwater bath when it obviously has something, that sounds like good advice. <We are confluent in this opinion> We know a freshwater bath will kill or reduce a lot of other pathogens that could be hitching a ride on the fish, from flukes to Brooklynellosis.  But besides killing all the other stuff that might be in the gills on a fish that's showing spots, Will it actually help to reduce the load of marine ich or velvet? <Oh yes. Done correctly, they are virtually eliminated, excluded with such practice> Or am I only giving a bath to kill whatever else might be on the animal and waiting until the encysted parasites drop off? <If your systems are "specific pathogen free", you will not have such pathogens to reinfect/fest them...> | I had the idea that the freshwater bath might take off some of the fishes slime coat and expose the parasite to the killing freshwater.  Or is that not the case? <Yes... with most fish species, in good initial health, such exposure results in more slime production temporarily> In a related idea of giving a saltwater bath to a fresh water fish.   Sometimes I will see a fish arrive covered so heavily with ich (freshwater) that I go 'man, that's horrible'.  I don't think the animal will survive to where those encysted parasites drop off to be killed by the medication that's in the water.  So how about a salt bath. <Can be utilized with good result with many types/groups of fishes... not all. One must be attentive (there while doing this, closely observing), using aeration... removing the fishes if/when show too much stress> I've read a few authors suggesting a 1% or 3% bath, in that it would take off the fishes slime coat exposing the parasites from their slime coat fortress to be immediately destroyed, and it encourages the fish regenerate a new slime coat more aggressively. <Yes, ideally> The bulk of the question affects how I handle a fish that I see is 'covered'   Can I do something now to help it get some of those nasties off it and medicate.  Or are my hands tied and I medicate, wait, and hope it survives until they fall off. <Can do much... the best, most logical place is in transition, during handling, placement on arrival... during acclimation... next, by way of quarantine procedures... Of consequence, careful species and individual selection/sources, and appropriate, stable environmental, nutritional inputs> In a semi-related note I was browsing through the posts on marine velvet and a reply from a person Anthony from a post called "Oodinium".  He mentioned a preference of formalin over copper, in that copper would not penetrate deeply into the flesh to kill the parasite.  I thought that even the powerful formalin would still run into that same problem.  The parasite is protected by its slime coat fortress, that no medication could penetrate into it. <Mmm, well... metal and formalin containing material does produce such irritation that much of the slime coat of fish hosts is sloughed off, with not-too-deeply embedded parasite fauna going with it...>   You just wait until it falls off divides and kills the free swimming state. <Mmm, better to remove the stages from the host, kill them in the process if possible, and poison them in off-host stages as well. Bob Fenner> Thank you for time, Jonathan

Fresh Water Dips 9/13/06 Bob and Staff - <Hi> I'd first like to thank you for such an informative site. <Thanks for using it.>  I recently  ran  into a problem with ick  and according to your web site you advise dipping new fish in fresh water before putting them in quarantine.  I  get my fish from a wholesaler who keeps their salinity at 1.010 (yes I know that  is low) - I keep mine at 1.020. <Low too>  When should I give them the freshwater dip; after I acclimate them to my water settings or should I dip them first? <The FW dip should match you tank water in everything except salinity.  Ph, and temperature should match, so acclimating to the tank is acclimating it to the FW dip.>  Or is it too much stress on them to dip at all?   Thanks for your help. Jim H. <For ich I do not fresh water dip, not really that effective in my opinion.  Better off just going with copper or hyposalinity treatment.  The dip is quite effective for some other illnesses, in these cases dip before QT.> <Chris>

Dips Hi Bob. Will fresh water dipping actually kills off all external and internal parasites? Secondly, will the daily of fresh water dipping causes stress to the fish?( I mean for those fishes with parasites) >> Many external types weakened to destroyed by such procedures. No internal... any manipulation is stressful... the question is whether the "trade-off" is "worth it"... as time goes by the universe appears less didactic. Bob Fenner

Dipping, acclimation, quarantine for new fish Good morning: <Good morrow to you> I'm going to be receiving a shipment of stock today from one of the national suppliers. The stock will have been in a FedEx container since yesterday. In reviewing the CM Aquarist I noted that you recommend that fish who have been traveling for a bit should go directly to their quarantine home. Is this in lieu of freshwater dip first as the dip is too much additional stress after a bunch of travel time? <Good question. A subjective evaluation on your part necessary here. If the livestock is apparently beat, simpler acclimation and to quarantine> No invertebrates are coming or in the q-tank so the stock can be medicated there. <Are you familiar with our website? Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/quaranti.htm and the related FAQs (linked, in blue, above)> Your thoughts as always appreciated. Charles Shatzkin PS: this dealer actually encourages use of a q-tank! <Outstanding. Thank you for writing. Bob Fenner>

I've been reading your column daily over the past few months, and I'd like to  tell you how much I enjoy it. I'm new to the marine fish hobby, though I have a lot of experience with freshwater setups, and I've gleaned quite a bit of useful stuff from your Q&A's. My question is about the fresh water dip that some folks recommend for new additions to a marine tank. From reading your column, I understand that you advocate this practice, but the guys at my local fish store seem to frown upon it. They claim that it unnecessarily stresses the fish, and can actually kill them. Can you tell me what risks are involved in fresh water dipping? I've just gotten my 150 gallon fish-only tank cycled, and have added some fish who's health I'd really like to protect. On a related note, if I'm going to be doing fresh water dips, would it be a really bad idea to do it in one of my tropical fish tanks (complete with tropical fish)?  One more thing: I have the following setup: 150 gal tank, over flow filtration with one return. Wet/dry system which uses a commercial sized bio-wheel for biological filtration, a Lifeguard AF-94-19 mechanical filter, Lifeguard AF-93-19 chemical filter, Lifeguard QL-40 UV sterilizer, and a Top Fathom TF 110A protein skimmer. Can you think of anything else I should add to this setup to provide for a cleaner and healthier tank? Thanks for your help! Dan >> There are few risks or real added stress (compared with being caught, hauled out of the ocean, thrashed about being brought to a facility, kept w/o food, heavily medicated, being housed with species that you don't associate with in tiny cubicles, boxed and air freighted in absolute darkness and then pretty much the last few items through wholesalers then retail... Give me a break, the freshwater dip is a breeze by comparison. And, this is the best way of knocking off external parasites like Ich and velvet... I've just come back (well, not quite, now I'm in Hawaii) from helping friends develop receiving protocols for wild imported (from the Solomon's, Tonga, Fiji, Vanuatu) fishes... all of which we run through freshwater dips. Anyhow, there are few risks. And my expanded, though less emphatic views on the topic and means can be found in articles on my wetwebmedia.com website, including references. No, don't do the dips in a freshwater tank. As you will find, it's best to make the dip water from new tap (Dechlor/am/inated) and buffered (we just use baking soda, sodium bicarbonate)... with or w/o other additives. Re your system, do keep your eye on that sterilizer (real problems with these over the years)... and do investigate what you might do to modify that wet-dry... to a Berlin system at the least, to a continuously lit Caulerpa and mud filter at best... Many roads, same destination: clean consistent water quality. Bob Fenner

Re: freshwater dip - I have been quarantining new arrivals for 2 to 3 weeks before introducing them into my main tank, but I have not, to date, been applying a freshwater dip - largely out of concern of process I generally take great care in following in transitioning the fish from the store's water to my quarantine tanks? Do you skip the acclimation process entirely - or acclimate to quarantine water, then dip, then introduce to the quarantine? Also, I do not (have not had to date) medicate my quarantine tank, I just use it as a place for the new arrivals to get acclimated and regroup. Do you recommend adding copper based medication to the quarantine as a protective measure. Similarly, what is your preferred approach to the freshwater dip - just fresh water (Ph adjusted and dechlorinated) or water treated with Formalin or another copper based medicine. Many thanks in advance for your insights. >> The stress of freshwater exposure is minimal... with most fish species, negligible. I dip/bath the new fish livestock on the way into quarantine. And good for you re the lack of using "poisons" (cause that's what they are) in your quarantine or dip/bath protocols... if the livestock is healthy to start with... using copper, formalin et al. is unnecessary... commercially (like in collecting and wholesale situations) I do utilize such expedients... personally, no. Bob Fenner

In his book, Bob Fenner recommends that wrasses be quarantined "quickly." Mine arrived a week ago from FFExpress, and he's doing fine in the quarantine tank. Should I move him to the display tank or wait the standard two weeks? Just wondering. >> If the animal(s) seem to be external disease free, and perhaps growing skinnier from the quarantine procedure, I might well go ahead and run them through a buffered freshwater dip on their way, and just place them in the main tank.  Besides many of the wrasses (family Labridae), other groups of fishes that often benefit from a "fast tracking" through quarantine are gobies, blennies, dragonets/scooters/mandarins... basically any organism that might starve, or suffer more psychological damage from the process than the risk of parasitic infestation warrants, I would dip, keep in quarantine for a minimum of days (to let it rest, assure it won't "just" die) and move it on, with another dip on the way. Bob Fenner

Baths. Which is better, a full quarantine or a freshwater bath? >> >> Quarantine in general, but BOTH are BEST. Bob Fenner Dear Mr. Fenner, Thanks for the reply! What chemical dip mixture and what duration would be safe to use on macro algae? Would a freshwater-Methylene blue mix be okay? Regards, Alec >> I would just use a pH adjusted (baking soda to 7.8 would be fine) freshwater (chloramine removed) mix. Bob Fenner

Ich/FW dips Bob Do you recommend a freshwater dip for a new arriving fish before putting him in quarantine, or waiting a couple of days? <Not all fish species, specimens routinely... some arrive too weak to dip, others are historically worse off for the operation, unless they are judged parasitized...> I am talking about an overnight delivery instead of a fish from LFS. How long of dip is best? I am watching fish closely. If 5 minutes is effective on killing parasites I obviously don't want to leave fish in dip for ten minutes. I understand that some fish will react differently. But I guess I am asking what is optimal. <Please read my dip/bath articles starting here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/dips_baths.htm and the FAQs files beyond> By the way, my current butterflies seem to be fighting off parasites. I believe you can judge a lot about a fish by closely watching him eat. <Yes! This is so> If there is any change, something is probably up. These fish would peck at my finger if I let them. Saw two of three pecking at algae. Time will tell. What is best, in your opinion, vitamin, for supplement with my concerns?  <A liquid complex...> What do you think about garlic? and garlic and vitamin supplements on the market?  <Both, all of these have their place... my opinions, related background information are posted on the WWM site... there is a search feature there if you don't want to avail yourself of the Marine Index/Site Map> Fish don't seem to crazy about it, but if it is important they can be trained to eat it. D Stanley <Not altogether unlike human food preferences, eh? Bob Fenner>

Freshwater dip Dear Bob, <Steven Pro at your service tonight.> Thanks for your previous replies, always a great help! Can one give inverts, in particular hermit crabs, snails, soft & hard corals, freshwater bath/dip? <No to all above except some corals.> If so, for how long? <Again, only for some corals and generally less than one minute.> Will this eliminate any parasites like Oodinium? <Inverts have their own set of parasites. Their is little risk of infecting fish with a coral. The real risk, more than likely, is in the water from the store.> Thanks again, Patrik Fredrikson, London <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Is a dip still worth it if I have a UV Sterilizer? <Yes, a properly conducted freshwater dip is a highly effective means at parasite treatment. UV's are notorious for not being maintained and installed properly; too small of a unit, too fast of a flow rate through it, water not prefiltered sufficiently, lamps not replaced often enough, quartz sleeve not cleaned routinely, etc. Even better than both is a quarantine tank, though. -Steven Pro>

Re: ich Hi again as I was fresh water dipping my Sweetlips I decided to inspect him it looks like the ick is gone except for one part on his fin he has these little tiny sacks look a little like blisters but they were hard I was unable to scrape it off is that another stage of ick or something else.  <not another stage... be prepared with broad spectrum antibiotics to prevent secondary infection> Should I keep up with the same treatment the powder blue is showing no signs off ick or anything. <my apologies... so many e-mails, not sure where the powder blue is at this point. If in QT and the water is medicated, then I would say it would be fine to pause on the FW dips for him as long as you see stabilization or improvement. Continue to do water changes from the bottom of the bare bottom QT to control parasite cysts. Anthony>

Too late for a FW dip? Hi there, <Hello> I recently sent an email about a Rusty Dwarf angel that wouldn't eat. I took him back to the LFS until my ammonia level came down (which I think shot up because I added LR and LS on the same day I added the Rusty). I did pick up a CPR BakPak II skimmer at the same time. (according to this site - a must have!). He wasn't eating and I was afraid of ammonia poisoning since my level shot up to 1.0. Did water changes everyday. Well, I got him back when everything was normal. The LFS said that he was eating live brine. I picked that up too but I have yet to see him eat. His swimming is normal and he comes out a lot to look at me (very friendly little guy). But I notice that his mouth is swollen, as if he can't close it. This is what I am suspecting is the reason he is not eating (perhaps it would hurt him).  <Good observations> Anyway, I do not have a QT as this is my first attempt. I have a 20 gallon tank.  <Small for this species> I have been reading about FW dips and was wondering if this could help him. I have a cleaner shrimp that he does go to, but the cleaner shrimp always seems interested in checking his gills. Anytime the cleaner shrimp goes to his mouth, he jumps away. This is my first fish, and as I said, such a friendly little guy. Can I do a FW dip at this point - will it help?  <Not in my opinion. I would leave this specimen to the care of the Cleaner Shrimp, self-cure. Do keep offering a mix of foods... perhaps with vitamin, HUFA supplementation/soaking> If the answer is yes, please clarify one thing for me - is FW actual freshwater or diluted saltwater? <No... Please read: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/dips_baths.htm and the FAQs, linked files beyond> Also, what are the steps ( I'm looking for a 1. 2. 3. which I really can't seem to find on this site).  <There are such approaches detailed here and there... on the area cited> Again, thanks for all the help. And I promise that as soon as I know what I'm doing, a QT will definitely be part of my program. <Real good> My deep gratitude. Debra <You are welcome my friend. Thank you for sharing. Bob Fenner>

Annularis in Quarantine Hey Bob. I have been using the site now for a while and it's great. I've been recently searching the FAQ's for my angel but had no luck. I have an Annularis Angel in QT treating with formalin and malachite green for about two weeks now. My nitrites are about .25 and sometimes .50. My angel was doing VERY WELL and all of the sudden appeared these really small white spots all over his body, I mean he's covered in them. There are millions of them sprinkled on his body. This has happened before and then just gone away with the medicine so I thought it was ich or something. <Me too> But, they really don't look like ich or velvet, I've never seen this before. He broke out in these and rapid breathing in less than a 24 hour period. Could this be the formalin or mal green doing this to him?  <Yes> Or is this some kind of disease?  <Not likely... all external parasites should be gone with the first exposure to the formalin... Am given to suggest that you do a pH adjusted freshwater dip and move this fish into the main/display tank... this is what I would do> I need to find out how to treat it and what this is from. This angel went from eating like a pig yesterday and swimming all over the tank and this morning I wake up and he's covered and floating in the middle of the tank not really swimming much. If someone could respond quick because he's on his way out, I'm running out of time........THANK YOU!!! Jesse <Got to ask: Do you have a microscope, some simple gear for doing a skin smear... look/see? This is also what I would do... look into a cheapy QX3... this is what I have... it works fine... I would move this fish. Bob Fenner> 

Formalin, Malachite, Annularis Follow-up Bob, YOU'RE A LIFESAVER!!! I actually already started to acclimate him to my display tank because that was my first intuition. My gut feeling was that it was the water and/or meds bothering him. Glad that worked out well, lol. I thought that it takes a while for any medicine to kill parasites... <Mmm, depends on what types... Formalin kills most all on contact... all external> ...and that was the reason for a minimum 2 week to a month QT period (to make sure no new cysts hatch and more parasites break out)? <If the live stages were present on the fish... they'd be killed... if the fish was new, where would the encysted, other life stages come from?> Would the formalin and mal green kill Oodinium and Brooklynellosis and could it be a possibility that he has either of those? <Would kill them, unlikely it's Brooklynellosis, possibly Amyloodinium, but not at this stage...> I'm only asking because at the end of the email you mentioned a microscope. Are you concerned that there really could be a possibility that this could be a parasite (ich/velvet) and not the medicines? <Am always concerned... the only way I handle toxic chemicals, expose them to livestock is to be sure of their efficacy. Bob Fenner> 

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