FAQs About Dojos, Weatherfishes
Related Articles: Dojo Use
in Ornamental Ponds, Loaches,
A New Look At
Loaches By Neale Monks,
Related FAQs: Dojos/Weatherfishes Health 1,
Dojo Health 2, Dojo
Health 3, Dojo Health 5, Dojo/Weatherfishes 1,
Dojos/Weatherfishes 2, & FAQs on:
Dojos/Weatherfishes Reproduction, &
Clown Loaches, &
Ghosty: Costia? 11/19/17
Since we last corresponded, Ghosty has been doing relatively well.
As a recap, I treated the tank with two cycles of Furan-2 to see if it would
help Ghosty’s symptoms of a cloudy, clamped dorsal fin & lots of slime floating
around in the tank (although I never witnessed it sloughing off of him in
particular). I do believe he felt better after the first treatment, & acted more
like his normal self, but about two weeks afterwards, his fin became clamped &
cloudy again so I treated with Furan-2 again.
I didn’t really see much improvement after the second treatment, so I began
researching everything I could re Costia, the other potential issue Neale
mentioned. I settled on treating with ParaGuard, & am pleased to say that after
two weeks of this treatment plus keeping the tank between 80-81 degrees, his
dorsal fin looks clear & isn’t as clamped although the bones are curved - much
like his tail. Don’t know why. The floating some patches have decreased
SIGNIFICANTLY and I’ve only seen one small patch in the last 10 days or so.
<Ah! The plot thinnens, as they say.>
Ghosty developed two lumps near his tail over the past 6 months or so - tumors?
<Possibly. In aquarium fish, actual cancerous tumours are relatively rare, but
they do happen -- primarily in species genetically predisposed to them, notably
goldfish and Bettas. In other fish, lumps can and often do have other
explanations: viruses, environmental stress, dietary shortcomings, even
bacterial infections such as Mycobacteria.>
And for the last week, a red spot has developed in each one. He continues to act
& feed normally. Is this a reaction to ParaGuard?
<Really hard to say. As/when you conclude the treatment as per the instructions,
do a series of water changes, and ideally use carbon in the filter for a week or
two. Basically, expose the fish to good, clean water and see what happens.
Optimising diet, especially with regard to vitamins and minerals, will also
I have treated at 3/4 strength vs. a full dose just because these loaches are
more sensitive to medications. Or are the lumps “healing” from the treatment?
<Lumps and bumps on benthic fish such as Loaches can be a reaction to
medication, but more often are environmental, for example because of
coarse gravel, scratchy sand, or heavy metals in the substrate such as copper.
Really, anything that can irritate the skin and allow bacteria to seep in,
resulting in a lump or bruise. Under good conditions these things can/do heal;
see above for details. Treating as per Finrot can help, but only if the
environment and diet are appropriate.>
They do seem a tad bit smaller than they’ve been but I am worried about the red
spot & don’t want septicemia to occur, obviously.
<Indeed; septicaemia is certainly the sort of thing I'd be worried about here.>
I can’t think of what to do next, so thought I should ask for your extremely
helpful & educated advice.
Tank parameters are consistently Amm:0 & Nitrite:0 & Nitrates: 20-40ppm.
Thank you in advance for any help you can offer! :)
<Hope this helps! Neale.>
Hmmm ... (RMF, any ideas?). G Loach
Thank you for the info Saturday.
I replaced the carbon filtration back in the tank, water parameters are great at
Amm 0, Nitrites 0 & Nitrates 20 ppm. Ghosty is still eating & acting normally,
and the spots in his two tail lumps are more of a brownish red than bright red
now. They also appear to be shrinking slightly.
However, this morning, he looked like this:
See that pink squiggly stuff beside him? Is that his skin?
<Is it attached to him? Or just some random thing on the ground? If attached to
the body, then yes, a piece of skin is possible I suppose. More ominously is
some sort of external parasite. It doesn't look much like an Anchor Worm in the
photo, but said photo isn't too sharp, and Anchor Worms are commonly seen on
coldwater fish, so could get onto a Weather Loach at some point. Anchor Worm is
a pain to treat, needing specific medication (because it's a crustacean rather
than a worm) but this sort of shapeless worm might more probably be some type of
flatworm or annelid worm, in which case Praziquantel is your go-to medication.
It's easy to buy and use, not particularly toxic (though use carefully) and is
normally tolerated well by loaches.>
I added Stress Coat to the tank Sat & Sun thinking that might help boost his
healing. I also added Melafix yesterday (although I’ve seen you say this is
useless) ... but with the carbon still in, I would imagine it has been processed
out of the tank ...
<Melafix is fairly pointless, yes. It's kind of like a bar of soap. Sure, might
kill germs on the outside. But doesn't really do much for fish that are
genuinely sick. BobF believes it actually has a counterproductive effect. So
nope, I'd not put a lot of store by it, though I do know some swear by it.
Certainly, if you're treating a bacterial infection, a proper antibiotic like
Tetracycline will be not only more effective but also less likely to affect the
Should I do another course of antibiotics or ParaGuard? Another medication? Or
just wait it out? I’m so sorry to keep asking questions but I’m afraid you’re
the most knowledgeable source & I'm doing all I can to try and help this guy.
<If he's eating and behaving normally, and that thing isn't attached to him, I'd
carry on what you're doing. But if that thing is attached to him, then treating
as per a worm of some kind should do the trick.>
Thanks in advance for your assistance,
<<Don't know what the anomalous material is (fecal matter?), but not a fan of
Melafix. Have Wendy search for our input on WWM re. I would NOT treat this Dojo
further. Bob Fenner>>
Ok so I fished it out of the tank, & it is slimy & immediately dissolves when
touched. There were two “blood globs” where those tumors or cysts are, that as
you can see, flattened out w/the slightest pressure.
So strange ... I look forward to hearing your thoughts. Thank you! -Wendy-
<My thoughts run along the lines of "yuk". But as previous message, if not
attached to loach, and your fish is basically happy and active, I'd fish out and
ignore; stick with optimising living conditions and diet, and trust the loach's
own immune system to do the rest. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Ghosty 11/21/17
Ok great, thanks very much! It’s just the weirdest thing! Those cysts almost
look as if they’re trying to “pop” or something. Very strange though I suppose
I’m thankful he has this issue & not some of the other lumps & bumps I’ve seen
since scouring the Internet for images of weather loaches with bumps!
<Do try Loaches.com; they do have a forum there, and the guys and gals there are
generally very helpful and informative.>
<Most welcome. Neale.>