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FAQs on Garlic, Use in Aquariums

Related Articles: Garlic Use in Aquariums, Use of Biological Cleaners, Aquatic Surgery, The Three Sets of Factors That Determine Livestock Health/Disease

Related FAQs: Medications/Treatments 1, Medications/Treatments 2, Medications/Treatments 3Antibiotics/Antimicrobials, Anthelmintics/Vermifuges/Dewormers, Copper FAQs 1, Organophosphates, Epsom/Other Salts, Formalin/Formaldehyde, Furan Compounds, Homeopathic Remedies (teas, pepper sauce, other shams...), Malachite Green, Mercury Compounds/Topicals, Methylene Blue, Metronidazole, Quinine Compounds, Sulfas, Treating Disease, Treatment Tanks, Medications/Treatments II, Treating Parasitic Disease, Using Hyposalinity to Treat Parasitic Disease, Garlic UseAntibiotic Use Marine Disease 1, Puffer Disease

If you're sick, do you go for homeopathic remedies?

I like garlic... in pastas, many soups... Not to "cure" disease, definitely not to "fight" pathogens

garlic and Selcon      3/9/14
Hey Bob,
How are things on the left coast?(or perhaps underwater somewhere?)
<Fab; Santa Ana currently... high 70's F. wind from the east>
I went to my lfs yesterday to purchase some Kent Garlic as well as Selcon.
I have found him to be pretty knowledgeable over the years, so generally I listen to what he says.
When I told him what I was buying, he urged me not to use the garlic. He said to me that long term it may not be good for the fish.
<Am not a fan either... just search the site...>
I understand too much of anything good or bad, is ultimately bad, however, it is advisable to use garlic and Selcon perhaps together 2-3 times a week?
I searched around, including WWM, and did not see anything negative towards it. So I thought I would ask you.
Thanks
<Allium for pizzas, pasta dishes.... B>

Ich or something else?, Crypt? 7/9/10
I have a 100 gall with three triggers (clown, bursa, niger) an adult Sailfin tang, an adult lionfish, and a snowflake eel.
<Too much for this tank.>
My fish are getting white spots on their fins only and this wouldn't usually concern me but this has happened before. My little brother also has a saltwater tank (75 gal.) and his fish did the same thing and continued to eat until they died.
<Not uncommon if it is ich/Cryptocaryon irritans.
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm .>
I think someone in my family may have contaminated my tank while I was out of town.
<Why would you think this.>
I gave the fish in my brothers tank garlic in their food to boost their immune system (I am currently doing this to my fish) and all but two fish died (he started out with at least 7).
<Worthless or worse, some new evidence that garlic damages the liver, and no evidence that it does much good for ich.>
I did make a few mistakes like not doing as many water changes as necessary. I also do not have a quarantine tank (I would use my bothers tank but the remaining two fish still have this).
<I would invest in one, will save money in the long run.>
What is this?
<Hard to say without a picture or more detailed description, but ich is very common. See here for more http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisindex.htm
.>
What happened in my brothers tank seemed to be ich but the fish would eat until the parasites covered their eyes and they could no longer see their food and they still used smell to find some food.
<This is what happens when it goes untreated, the fish suffocate as the protozoa destroys the gills.>
But there were never and they did not scratch nor did the ich make a cocoon around the fish.
<?>
Is there anything I can do to save my fish?
<Yes, read. Start with the links above, also here
http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2003-08/sp/index.php .>
<Chris>

Garlic/Ich Research - 10/06/2009
Hi Crew. I was doing some research yesterday on garlic in the aquarium as it has proven effective for me in the past. I came across the thread labeled "*Garlic In The Marine Aquarium- A Summary 02/18/2009*" at http://www.wetwebmedia.com/garlicfaqs.htm. It looks like this was pulled directly from http://www.geocities.com/horge1218/garlic.html. I just wanted to make sure everyone had access to the full article.
Thanks.
Ryan
<Thank you for this Ryan. BobF>
<<Bob, Geocities is quite literally days from non-existence -- if the article is to preserved, we might should consider doing an 'archive' of the page soon.. I can do this while I'm at work tonight if you wish.. -JustinN>>
<Mmm, can this be done legally? Ethically? BobF>
<<There are organizations that do this specifically with the interest of keeping an archive of the internet, similar to the national archives (at least in concept.) http://www.archive.org/web/web.php does exactly this -- in fact, the page may be already archived there. I'll start by looking there, in fact, and see if they can archive it. -JustinN>>
<<Aaand, here's the link that will last longer than the end of October:
http://web.archive.org/web/20061214150622/http://www.geocities.com/horge1218
/garlic.html -- legalities solved! :) -JustinN>>
<Ahh, interesting and new to me. Thank you Justin. BobF>

Garlic In The Marine Aquarium- A Summary 02/18/2009 In the last two days there have been some posts on the use of garlic in treating marine ich. Out of curiosity I did some research on this, and have summarized some of my findings. <Mike, Thank you for putting together this well composed email. It will be posted in the dailies and be placed on the site. Thank you for sharing! Mich>

Garlic in the Marine Aquarium: The use of garlic for marine ich started when one person was examining the effectiveness of garlic against nematodes and Cestodes on infected puffer fish when they noticed a general decrease in Cryptocaryon irritans  incidence and proposed feeding garlic to fish as a preventative. From there the legend of garlic has spread. Allicin, a.k.a. Diallyl thiosulfinate (or Diallyl disulphide-oxide), has been identified as the chief active pharmaceutical ingredient in garlic (Allium sativum). It has some antibacterial, antiviral and anti protozoal ability. Allicin further has a remarkable ability to permeate living tissue. It is hard to get garlic's smell off your skin after contact with the raw material. In a parasitic protozoan infestation similar to "Marine Ich", there are usually two major insults to the fish's physiology, the gross tissue damage committed by the Protozoans, and the secondary infection. There is speculation on the garlic's apparent ability to deliver damage to the parasites themselves -with numerous claims of outright detachment of C .irritans trophonts (the burrowing Protozoans) and tomonts (the "egg cysts") as a result. With its partially sulfurous chemical signature, there is the potential to mask the chemical cues that enable a parasite's recognition of the host, potentially confusing the invader and further suppressing the havoc it wreaks. This means garlic therapy could benefit even uninfected fish, allowing them to escape detection by host-hunting C. irritans tomites Allicin is unstable and highly reactive. Much of the potency has been lost in commercial preparation, and there is no shortage of neutralizing substances in the way to delivering the drug to the fish's infected parts. If the garlic is fed to fish, the acid in the stomach can irreversibly neutralize the alliinase. Even if some gets through, it must then bypass the liver, and interact with the blood resulting in a reduction of hemoglobin to methemoglobin, lowering oxygen transport (not a good thing). By adding the garlic directly to the water there is the problem of dilution, and the interaction with the biological soup of the tank water to neutralize any Allicin You can again either overwhelm this barrier via massive dosage; with the risk of impact this time on microorganisms throughout the aquarium, or you bypass contact with the water by mixing it with oily vehicles. This will just float to the surface, and the oil reduces the potency of Allicin by incarcerating it. On top of that there is no standard prescription formula like "X milligrams of garlic medication per Y grams of patient tissue, or water volume over Z days" like there is for conventional treatment with Cupramine where ingredients can be measured. As yet the effectiveness and safety of garlic has not been supported with proper science and reproducible clinical trials. Mike Lomb

Re: Ick 1/5/09 Another update regarding... Bob, I had reached a point to where I was out of ideas, as none of my tactics had worked. As I mentioned, I ended up netting out and disposing (humanely) of my Atlantic Blue Tang as he seemed to be the primary carrier. At this point, I said screw it... if all of my fish had to die and the tank had to go fallow for months, then that was the course of action I would be forced to take, other than investing a lot of money and space that I just don't have. In the meanwhile, the Tomato Clown became the 'next' carrier, with many cysts and one really cloudy eye, hovering in one spot but thankfully still eating. Not wanting to give up completely, I used no medication whatsoever but began feeding the fish their food soaked heavily in Kent's Garlic Extreme. Over the course of 5 days, the cysts have disappeared from the clown and his eye has cleared up. No other fish has symptoms of ick. I am not recommending this as a treatment, please don't take it that way. It is merely a continuation of my story, so to speak. I don't know why the heavy garlic has this effect. I'm still faced with the fact that ick resides in the tank, so adding additional tankmates is still a daunting task. I'd of course like to hear your opinions on the subject, but this is where we stand now. Hope you all had a safe and happy New Year! Thomas Roach <Thank you Thomas... "whatever works" is my common mantra in these cases... I do want to share with you the fact that I have "gone nuclear" (whatever pronunciation)... and not only advocated, but been involved in totally dumping, bleaching, wiping out whole commercial systems that had become entrenched with Protist issues as yours... Bleaching everything, returning the marine life to the sea in the case of on-site collection companies... Am very glad to see that you have not given up. Your friend in fish, Bob Fenner>

Re: Ick, garlic  01/19/09 Bob, This may be my final update to this issue! As you can tell by the date of this last email, it has been two full weeks of no remedy for ick but the use of the Garlic Extreme. Now I undoubtedly had/have ick in the tank... but from the point of religious dosing of garlic with the food, there has been absolutely no sign if ick whatsoever. You know the trials I went through to handle my ick problem prior to this course of action. Again, I won't say it's a 'cure'... but there HAS to be some validity to it somewhere. I only write now to say thanks for the support received from you and your crew, and also to say that when someone has this extreme problem, give it a try. The 'directions' say to add two drops per ounce of food, however I've been adding 7 or 8 drops to it. I only wish I had done this prior to removing the Atlantic Blue Tang, but we learn as we go. Maybe one of the old wives' tales actually works... <I do believe that Allium sativum has some "therapeutic/health value"... I do not, though, want to be seen as recommending it (solely) as a cure for anything> We have not yet added another fish yet, to see if it will contract ick or whether I can prevent infestation by feeding garlic ahead of time in a QT tank, and when I do such a thing I will certainly send you an email with results. God bless, Thomas Roach <Thank you for this update, input Thomas. BobF>

Re: Ick, garlic  1/21/09 No, I certainly wouldn't recommend it as a treatment, either... more of as a last resort type thing, or in conjunction with other treatments. <We are in agreement> My main reason for letting you know is that I'm sure you hear of many cases and scenarios, and might find the knowledge useful. I wonder if there has been any case studies done, or 'scientific' experiments using it to combat various... um, what are they, Protozoans? <Yes> I was trying to liken it to those 'proofs' I had to do in Geometry so many years ago, in that if you have the disease, and treat it with nothing else but garlic, and it goes away, then is has to have some merit. (I know, not exactly mathematics, but you get my drift...). All I can say is after days, weeks even, of exposure to Quinines, and various doses of formalin based treatments, Ick remained quite readily in the tank. I haven't seen hide nor hair of any of it now in three weeks. I suppose the ultimate test would be introducing another tang, to see if it contracts it after passing a quarantine stage, and then whether or not garlic supplied during the QT phase prevented ick or not. <And more than one "rep."... Several trials... some w/, some w/o... and the investigators not aware of which is which> What would be even more interesting would be quarantining two tangs separately, feeding one garlic and the other not, and introducing both fish simultaneously. Of course, then again two tangs together with the yellow tang might not be wise, nor would I want to risk having another outbreak... but the results would certainly be interesting and informative. Have you in your studies/experience ever conducted such an experiment? <There are none as afar as I'm aware... Very little of what passes as "science" in the ornamental aquatics field has been rigorously tested> Good information for the many readers... Thomas Roach <Agreed. BobF>

Ick, Garlic, experiment....   2/15/09 Bob, <Thomas> Well, I'm experimenting, into day 5 I think. No signs of ick have been present in weeks, after the heavy garlic feeding. My question to myself was since ick is a living organism, can it survive if it cannot attach to a host? No real way to tell, really. All I knew it that ick was not present on my fish anymore. I purchased a Tomini Tang from a reputable dealer here in the Houston area. The fish had no signs of any disease, was healthy, robust, and feeding well. I added the fish to my tank, no quarantine. Continued feeding the other fish various frozen and dried foods soaked in Garlic Extreme. The Tomini tang is shy, as most fish are when first introduced, and really for two days did not allow itself to be seen. I knew that it was quite possible that the first time I was able to view this fish fully it might be covered in Ick cysts. Day 6 now, actually (fish was purchased Monday afternoon, is now Saturday mid-day) and the fish is healthy, feeding, and there is not an ick cyst in sight. I can't really say if he consumed garlic laden food when I could not see, as I would feed and then leave the room so that he could come out if he chose. So the factors are that garlic has been heavily fed, no quarantine procedures were followed, and after 6 days and knowingly having a nasty infestation of ick two months ago, no ick is visible nor are there any indications of it after treating with nothing but garlic. <Is this science? Need replications of circumstances, verification that host fishes are infested...> This is strictly for information, research, soliciting your opinion, etc. I would love to know what you think about it all, of course. You and I have had quite a dialogue regarding ick, quinines, formalin, etc... Anyway, looking forward to hearing from you, hope you are well! I missed your last visit to Houston, any chance you'll be back? <Oh yes> Thanks, Thomas <Had a call a few days back from friend, Spectrum (TherA) maker Pablo Tepoot... among other things he asked me if I'd heard the accusations going around that Garlic was damaging... shouldn't be put in foods... I have not. Bob Fenner>
Re: Ick, Garlic, experiment.... 2/15/09
Certainly not science, at least not the way that a theory is intended to be proven. <Yes... anecdotal (though worthwhile) evidence alone> I couldn't answer my own questions as whether or not ick was still in the tank. I think it's worth experimenting with, though, <Again, Thomas... "science" contains within it provision for rigorous controls... Isolating (if one can), all but one variable...> not so much by me as a hobbyist but by someone who's got the resources to set up multiple tanks, use (insert word here for subjects that are treated the same except for the treatment in question), document, etc. I just thought you'd be interested in what was going on here. <Indeed I am> I know that ick got in my tank by me being ignorant and not following some simple procedures a long time ago... But since I read the FAQ most every day, I see many cases like myself, folks who have the same issue but haven't read, stumble on WWM after becoming so frustrated with bogus herbal remedies and tea tree extracts... <Yes> It would SEEM, in my one case at least, that a heavy addition of garlic to foods has prevented ick from attaching to a host, therefore breaking the life cycle and has not allowed them to survive. <And I've occasioned many other such substantive related experiences> Again, that is only one case and not proven, just how it appears. I am not willing to go further by ceasing the garlic additive and risking a return. Probably why I write so often with follow up emails, trying to give you as much information regarding it as possible. Anyway, if you do get to Houston again as you said, perhaps we can discuss it further over some adult beverages... I think I mentioned to you in the past the Shiner Bohemian Black, worth a try if ice cold... Thomas <Oooh, you're on there. Think of my surprise, even disappointment, a couple weeks back in Dallas, to find there was Shiner "light"!!! Cheers, Bob Fenner>
Re: Ick, Garlic, experiment.... 2/15/09
Oh, on a side note... Would be terrible for the fish pharmaceutical industry if Garlic was proven effective against Ick! Good to start a rumor that it is damaging! Sort of like WMD's... :D <A good thought... and I AM a huge user of Allium sativum in cooking... B>
Re: Ick, Garlic, experiment.... Shiner  2/16/09
Well, to discuss most important subjects, Shiner, IMO, is not good unless it is ICE cold. The Black is VERY good, if ICE cold again... the light you refer to.. is that Shiner Blonde, perhaps? I do like Shiner Blonde. Please let me know when you are coming to Houston so I can be sure and attend. <Do keep an eye out for the MARSH April 3-5 do... Reef Ed... I'll be there. BobF>

Ick issues - 06/05/09
Hi Mr. Fenner,
<Mr. Roach>
You haven't heard from me in a long while, which is a good thing... I have noticed a few ick questions lately, same old issues.
<Ah yes>
Just to pass on an update, since our last talks months ago, my ick has never returned after using the Garlic Extreme in the food, even after adding a non-QT Tomini Tang to the tank. Really amazing, if unproven.
Anyway, pass it on, use it with whatever other remedies are recommended.
Respectfully,
Thomas Roach
<Thank you. BobF>  

Yellow Tang Black Spot,    8/14/08 Hello, <Hi> Just a quick question about "Black Spot" disease. I have a fairly new Yellow Tang, and have noticed the small black spots on him (I would say around a dozen right now). I was surprised to read about black spot disease/Ich as I was unaware of this condition. <http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasiti.htm> In the past, if a fish in my main display reef gets Ich, I do my best to treat with garlic. I do my best to keep the fish healthy by eating and I use plenty of garlic to resolve the problem. <No scientific data that suggests garlic is anything more than an appetite stimulant.> The thought is that Ich hates garlic causing them to abandon the fish, and as long as the fish is eating the garlic, the Ich has no host and eventually dies off. <Again, I would not rely on garlic.> It can be difficult for me to catch the infected fish, so depending on severity of the condition of the fish, I will however set a trap to catch the fish if necessary for treatment as a last resort. <All the more reason to QT all fish.> I have had good success in the past ridding Ich as long as fish are eating. My question is does black spot behave the same as garden variety Ich, or are they completely different? <Completely different, is a flatworm, Paravortex.> Will my process of feeding plenty of garlic help rid this parasite? <I do not believe it will rid any fish of any parasite, the science is just not there. But for Paravortex, a pH and temperature adjusted fresh water dip usually does the trick.> Thanks. -Chris <Welcome>
<Chris>

Marine Ich... cures?  7/18/08 Hi guys & girls I just wanted to say that this web site is awesome & has helped me with so much valuable information. I am fairly new to saltwater aquariums, I currently have a 50 gal freshwater which I have had for years. This Jan I bought a 40 gallon tank which I was going to go fresh water but decided to go salt, now I am hooked! I have now purchased a 120 gallon oceanic tank which is in it's 3rd week of cycle, 200 Lbs LR, 4" Live sand bed, upgraded protein skimmer, & lighting. Sorry I'll get to the point I bought a blue tang 2 months ago, I know tank to <too> small but knew I was getting the big tank, after the 3rd week he got marine ich & I was told that using Garlic extract, 2 drops at each feeding would work, I don't have a quarantine tank so had no choice. <...> After 2 days along with the help of my 2 cleaner shrimp it worked! No more ich & none of my other fish got it! <Uhhh> Have a Coral Beauty, Flame Angel & Yellow Tang with 2 Sand sifter gobies. I do believe this treatment works cause it did for me, more research should be done cause it is a lot less work, not that I mind, but less stress on our fish friends. Can't say enough about your web site, it is awesome, keep up the good work! Brian Macdonald Toronto, Ontario <Thank you for this account. I assure you, your system is still infested... Let us (esp. you) hope that it is not triggered into anything more than a latent, debilitation. Bob Fenner>

Re: Marine Ich... cures?  -07/18/08 Thanks Bob for the reply <Welcome> If (when my big tank is ready) I put my fish in the new tank can it become infected? <Mmm, always going to be a possibility... With any challenge, introduction...> My fish are very active in the small tank (Thanks for the 5% twice a week water change what a difference WOW!) and don't rub against the rock or show signs of ich. I am not sure what to do as I don't want to infect my big tank. Can you help? <Mmm, please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/parasittkfaq2.htm and the linked files above> Sorry about the spelling of my first e-mail. Brian Macdonald <Be chatting, reading. BobF>

Garlic, Cryptocaryon -07/18/08 <Mmm, am given to suggest... with your many and excellent responses... to change the acronym of the site to WWN... WetWebNeale! Heeeeeee!>> Hi Bob, Kind of you to say so. But it's honestly a pleasure. Anyway, how/why would garlic kill whitespot parasites? <Mmm, don't know. Perhaps if you throw the cloves very accurately...?> Does your correspondent on today's FAQ usage of garlic stem from some discussion in the "marine world" I'm not familiar with? <Allium sativum does have some "proven" benefits... even medicinally...> I don't spend that much time on Reef Central! <I eschew them as well...> Is this another pseudo-cure after the fashion of Melafix? <About the same... a nostrum of limited value/use... maybe properly regarded as an ameliorative to other real remedies> Cheers, Neale <And you, BobF>

Re: Marine Ich... cures?  7/19/08 Hi Bob <Brian> Thank you for the quick response I do appreciate it. <Certainly welcome> As you can tell I am a beginner (8 months) of marine tanks, and thanks to your website have learned so much valuable information which has helped me keep my 40 gallon tank healthy (except for the ich) & haven't lost a fish yet, so thanks again & I will be making a donation to your website as a thank you! Brian Macdonald <Thank you my friend. BobF>

Garlic Supplement (as Crypt trtmt.) and High Nitrates (rel.?)   02/19/2008 I have 30 and 75 gallon tanks salt water/reef set ups. A week after adding a fish to the 75, I noticed white spots this fish (only this fish). My LFS suggested soaking the food in "Garlic Guard" by Seachem. I would then feed both tanks with this food. The white spots disappeared within a week but the store suggested that I feed the supplement for a full month because if it was ick, the disease would come back in about a month. <<Feeding a fish garlic will not fight or remove Ich. The fish needs to be removed and placed in quarantine and treated>> I took readings recently in both tanks and the nitrates were high, extremely high in the 30 tank. Could the supplement be causing my problem? <<If you feeding a lot, then, yes its possible>> Since diagnosing the problem, I've drained about 20 gallons of water from the 30 gallon tank and intend to drain about the same amount in the next couple of days. Any other suggestions? Thanks. <<Quarantine the fish, back off the feeding a little to once per day, or even once every two days. Continue water changes until nitrates are under control. Please read here and linked articles and FAQ's regarding Crypto http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm >> Larry <<Thanks for the questions Larry, hope the above helps. A Nixon>>

Reef tank ich; dealing with vampires - 01/28/2008 OK, so I have been fighting with ich in my reef tank for two weeks. LFS recommended raising temp and feeding with garlic elixir. <You also need to be using crucifixes to get rid of the little vampires… Really, while garlic was shown to be able to kill freshwater Ich (Ichthyophthirius multifilis) at ridiculously high concentrations, there is no proof whatsoever it will help with marine Ich (Cryptocaryon irritans). It probably won't do any harm and the tank will get an exotic smell, but it also won't kill the parasites.> Temp raised to 83deg. No luck ich is getting worse visible on both my gold rim and powder blue tangs as well as my lawnmower blenny. Have an orange spot goby and a pair of maroon clowns with no signs yet. Decided to set up the QT tank and dose with product called copper power. <Good decision. You also need a matching test kit to keep the copper level constant.> From reading your FAQ I know to leave the affected fish in the QT tank for two weeks. <Rather more.> I have two questions. 1st should I have all of the fish in the QT tank during this time to clear the ich out of the main tank? <Yes, you need to, anything else won't work. Only a few fishes are more or less immune to Cryptocaryon, but even those should get some kind of treatment to be sure.> 2nd how long should it take for the ich to cycle out of the tank with non sick fish or no fish at all? <At least 4 weeks, 6 are better. Please see http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichart2mar.htm and http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm , which will answer your questions re marine ich in more detail.> thanks, Dan <Welcome. Marco.>

The Garlic Question….Mixing Sharks and Garlic 1/16 I heard from my LFS that adding garlic to my rays diet can boost his immune system. Is this true or will It kill him? < http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2005-10/sp/index.php . Please read through this article by Steven Pro…in short garlic won't kill him (unless he's also a vampire; hehe), however there's little study or evidence that makes me feel confident in saying it will help. I would personally prefer a proven vitamin supplement like Selcon or other similar products. **AJ.>

Star polyps and garlic 10/3/05 Hello guys, I just have a question on my Greenstar polyps that I purchased 2 1/2 mo.s ago. Everything is looking good and I can say that it's very happy since all the polyps are wide open swaying back and forth with the current. For some reason it just shut down! it's not opening for about 3 days now. I don't recall changing anything on my tank set up and cleaning schedules aside from the fish food that I'm now soaking in garlic (Mysid & seaweed) since one of my tang is recovering from "ick", by the way he is now well and very clean and getting its weight back...eats like a wild boar!!! anyhow, do you think this might cause the problem on my Greenstar? I already checked the water conditions and everything is ok.  It's just the same as the day I bought this coral 2 1/2 mo.s ago. Please advise. The rest of the corals are doing just fine also. Thanks in advance. Nemo1  <These corals occasionally close for periods of time.  It could be one of these normal cycles or it could be the garlic.  I would suggest stopping the garlic for a few days to see if the polyps return to normal.  In any case, I would not worry.  GSP's are very hardy and they will recover.  Glad to hear your fish is recovering!  Best Regards.  AdamC.>

Juv. Emperor Angel/Garlic and 'Pod Population  9/30/05 Crew- <Craig.> I have a question about the use of garlic in my tank for appetite stimulation. Since garlic is also used as a general antibiotic to fight parasite infestations, would I be correct to infer that it might also detrimentally impact my copepod and amphipod populations? <I think you misunderstand the function of garlic. The logic behind garlic is that it builds up the immunity of the specimen you feed it too helping its body to deter parasites (personally I have not "bought into it" completely).  The garlic itself does not actually kill the parasites so I would have to say its very unlikely to impact pod populations.> It seems to me that since parasites like ich seem to be similar in form to 'pods, that using garlic might compromise my mandarin's primary source of food in my system. <No the garlic use should be fine, though I personally prefer Selcon as a nutritional supplement.> The need for garlic is due to the fact that I have a TINY emperor angel (<3"!) that my LFS received without requesting it. (It was far too small for their expertise to keep alive- and yes he has large quarters available.) After 16 days in QT, it is imperative that he be moved to a display to have a chance to pick around on the LR (they do tend to graze when small). <I understand you have the needs of the emperor in mind but please to not forget your already established livestock. You could introduce unknown parasites/diseases with such as hasty QT.> He has fed lightly at best (probably just enough to survive), but IMO he is not long for this world if he stays in QT. <While I agree that having the liverock to graze on would help the Emperor its possible that he may not survive despite being moved to a mature tank. As you know these fish are very sensitive, and at this size they are even more delicate.> Am I convinced that after 16 days in QT he is parasite free? No, not really, but he currently manifests no signs. <Some illnesses are not expressed for 3 weeks or more.> So is garlic my best move to address the appetite stimulation issue and help guard against a parasite infestation? <As I mentioned above I prefer Selcon, you could also try fresh clam or scallop meat.> I feel like I am playing chess, Craig <Sounds like you are doing your best just don't over think, Adam J.>

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>

Ich, Trust, Pizza... 7/9/05 Hi Bob, <Brian>             I have a 54 gallon corner reef that a lady who is a total dummy "looks after" because my parents don't trust me. <...?> We had set up the tank 6 months prior to her working for us. For the first six months everything went smoothly until she came along. We had a small algae problem but she demanded that we go out and buy a tang and goby. I had read over your site and still hadn't found anything about gobies controlling algae. <Maybe a Blenny... Salarias, Atrosalarias species...> This was the first hint of her brilliance. So we ended up running out and buying a Sailfin tang and a purple Dartfish. <The latter don't eat algae> We already had a six line wrasse that scared the Dartfish into perpetual hiding so it slowly starved to death. A little later we found a couple spots of ich on the tail of the tang. She recommended garlic drops. <Dismal> My mom insisted that we make our own instead of buy them from the store. <Better, but still dismal> I told her that there are things in garlic oil that are harmful to fish. She didn't listen. We killed off every thing and my mom immediately blamed me. She said from now on Robyn would bring the fish and coral. I thought this was a bad idea. But 6 months later my tank has/had 1 Sailfin tang, 2 percula clowns, 1 Sixline wrasse, 1 hippo tang, 1 diamond watchman goby, 1 cleaner shrimp, 3 peppermint shrimp, 1 Toadstool, 1 xenia, a bunch of Zoanthids, some starburst polyps, and a bunch of mushrooms. 3 weeks ago the Sailfin tang had some ich cysts on his tail. She said to treat it with garlic drops. I asked her about a quarantine/hospital tank, she said it was unnecessary and told me to soak the food in the garlic drops. The condition has spread to everything and we already lost the goby. I called her yesterday she said to soak the food for 30 minutes. Now it looks like only 2-3 of the 7 fish will pull through. Help! I feel terrible about this. Is there anything to do now? Brian      <Please have your mom, service read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm and on to the linked files at top... and re Garlic (great on pizza's, pastas, some soups, various middle-eastern and oriental dishes...) not an effective medicine. Bob Fenner>

Skimmer stopped working Hi, <Hello> I started to add some garlic to the fish food 4 days ago. It is liquid and is very slimy. About the same time, my AquaMedic 5000 baby stopped producing any foam at all. I have cleaned the whole thing with water. Could the garlic have done something to the sides of the skimmer and collection cup? <Yepster> If so, how would I clean it as normal water has obviously done nothing. Thanks in advance, James <Time wounds all heels and will eventually clear out the oil from the garlic incident. Now, I've got to go howl at the moon. Woooohhhh! Bob Fenner>

Garlic, ich "medications" >Hello Bob... >>Hello, Marina here. >I have problem .. my yellow tang started showing signs of ich about 4 days ago. Since I have a reef, I couldn't add any meds to the tank, so I took the advice of a friend who runs a pet shop and started adding liquid garlic to the food I feed my fish. He said the parasites couldn't stand the taste of the garlic in the fish's system and they'd drop off. >>This is arguable.  Did you know that, because of the life cycle of the ich protozoan they would fall of anyway?  There are *only* two known, proven methods of curing ich (garlic is NOT one of them)--hyposalinity (<1.010) and copper.  I happen to disagree with the use of garlic as an ich curative, there is only evidence that shows it might stimulate feeding, however, all evidence to date in favor of garlic is anecdotal at best.  If I recollect correctly, there was a recent article in Advanced Aquarium (I believe you can find it at http://www.reefs.org ) regarding what garlic can and cannot do.  Do try to check it out. >Well they did in fact drop off after two days.  The tang is now clear.   >>For now.  You don't see any ich right now, this does not mean that the tang is clear, though.  It only means that the parasite has completed one stage of its life cycle and has moved on to another.  This would have happened with or without the use of the garlic. >Now my problem now is... my two black clowns and my potter's angel have something like a body fungus or maybe velvet, I'm not sure. >>Not surprising.  Expect all vertebrates to be stressed at this point, *especially* the Potter's angel.  They really don't perform well in captivity, and are best left to those with extensive experience.  This is outlined on the site as well as Bob's last book, "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist". >It looks patchy, but is taking over there entire body, like a coating.   >>This does sound a bit like velvet, though it could signal that they've now been infected with a particularly heavy ich infestation.  This is not good.  Have you searched the site for treatment and information?  If not, please let me link you--> http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisease.htm  also, do search www.reefs.org/library (as well as the archives on site), and do a general Google search. >I started a hospital tank today using water from my reef tank so I didn't shock them anymore and added copper safe to the tank. >>Good, a bit late, but better than never.  Now, you MUST get all the fish in there as well, or you'll never get rid of the ich or velvet (should that prove to be the disease). >Since I put them in...in about a hour's time the slime that's covering there body (whatever it is) is starting to hang off them (kinda stringy).  The fish are now darting around trying to scratch, where they weren't before.  Also the potter is breathing really heavy.  My question is... is this normal and should I use something in conjunction with the copper safe like Maracyn, just in case it is an actual bacterial infection.   >>This sounds as though all the fish are stressed, and there may be several factors occurring.  Without having a box of the meds in front of me I can't tell you whether or not it would be safe to use the two in conjunction, though I believe you can.  My own antibiotic of choice is Spectrogram, then Melafix.  Since you're medicating with the copper anyway (you MUST have a test kit for copper as well) then I suggest either reading the literature that comes with the medication, and if it says nothing then contact the manufacturer.  Also, give all fish a freshwater dip IF (and only if) they are not severely stressed already.  I do suspect you have a raging infesting presenting in these fish, though, and they're very stressed. >Can you use both Coppersafe and Maracyn at the same time?  The fish were eating normal, and the hospital tank is being aerated well. >>It is VERY important that you not allow any buildup of ammonia, nitrites, or nitrates.  Therefore, have on hand enough mixed, fresh saltwater to change out the q/t three times over AT LEAST.  Be sure that the q/t is bare on the bottom, and when you change the water siphon off the entire bottom of the tank well, this will help remove dropped parasitic cysts.  More is definitely better.  Now, you have ALL the fish in quarantine, and you *must* allow the display tank to remain fallow for six weeks MINIMUM.  Being as how you have such a severe infection I'm going to push you strongly to go a full eight weeks fallow before introducing the fish back. >Any help is greatly appreciated.  Gary B. >>Let's get this part out of the way, and we'll move on from there.  You can continue to use the garlic if it seems to stimulate feeding, but also be sure to offer copious amounts of Nori and romaine, as well as the best quality frozen foods you can find.  Also, if the fish are spooky, give them good cover in the form of PVC elbows, and even covering up parts of the q/t tank.

Garlic Oil Treatment Hi Bob, Can you elaborate on your use of garlic oil to treat ich? I haven't been able to buy "Garlic Oil" in a pure form, and I can only find garlic infused oils. So how long do you medicate and how often? What else have you observed? Thanks >> Argggh 'N Shnarrgghhh, No, this "treatment" is not "mine" and I don't endorse it. I have heard of people giving credence to adding garlic in foods as a purgative, treatment and nutritive supplement... but, once again, I do not endorse its use... I WOULD NOT place any type of oil in a marine system as a treatment. My rundown on diseases, treatments can be found in books, articles I've penned, and many of these efforts can be found archived on the wetwebmedia.com website. Bob Fenner

DIY Garlic Bob, on your old question and Answer sight on FFExpress (couldn't find it today). You mentioned some success with using garlic oil long term in food to help with ich. I've looked and can only find garlic flavored oils (lots of preservatives). Any suggestions on where to find it. My wife bought some garlic cloves in oil but it also contains phosphoric acid which I'm not sure I should use. Will you be back on FFExpress?? Thanks Lloyd >> Best to press your own... and am back/still on at FFExpress.com... we're gearing up for a great improvement... as you probably know better than I by now. Be chatting, Bob Fenner visiting in the Maldives.

Garlic Bob, Wanted to ask you what you thought about using garlic to treat parasites (specifically ich). I've reading on several bulletin boards that people have had success with it, especially with prolonged treatment. I've got a mild infestation in a 55 gallon reef system. Only 2 fish right now, Gold Striped Maroon Clown and a Lawnmower Blenny. The Maroon Clown is not apparently infected.....yet. The Blenny seeks regular checkups with the two cleaner shrimp I have and seems to be doing good but does scratch at the substrate. Tanks! (gee, is that a pun or a typo.....?) :) >> <Heard it... but thanks anyway... Re garlic... don't know of "the causative mechanism" and have not seen conclusive, reliable results with its use... Visited with Mike Paletta (on a PA trip last month), a/the big proponent (along with Kelly Jedlicki) of garlic (Allium sativum) use... and asked him about the same question point blank... and am still not convinced... A comprehensive avoidance program is best, the after the fact use of biological cleaners and environmental manipulation (lowered spg, elevated temp.) and lastly copper-based medication and letting the ich-infested system go fallow as long as possible (month(s)) is my treatment philosophy. Bob Fenner, who wishes all the world's ills could be treated with vegetable materials, but it just isn't so.

- Dipping & Garlic - Hey guys, I have a few important questions regarding Amyloodinium and dipping.  First question is:  How long should I keep my saltwater angel in a Methylene blue/freshwater dip for? <Probably not much more than five minutes.> The angel has body and gill parasites and Ich. <Is it Ich or Amyloodinium? These are not the same thing.> I was going with the recommendation Mr. Fenner had in The Conscientious Marine Aquarist book about Meth. blue dip recipe.  But it says nothing about duration. Second question is:  If I continue to feed all my fish in my main tank garlic continuously with every feeding, will that eventually rid me of Amyloodinium and keep the fish healthy? <The garlic "may" keep the fish healthy, but it will most certainly NOT rid your tank of Oodinium or Cryptocaryon (Ich). You need to take drastic action if the parasite you have is Oodinium as it will kill your fish in a matter of days if you do nothing other than use garlic. Dips and quarantine with Formalin are what are needed. Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasiti.htm > Thanks a lot, Jason <Cheers, J -- >

Garlic & Ich I don't know if I have talked to either of you about this, <Mmm, not me> but I wanted to set up an experiment to see if garlic really works or not. <Good idea. Have you talked much with folks in the trade re whether they are aware of any such testing?>   I was originally trying to find a source for cultured Cryptocaryon, but I have completely struck out. <Think you will have to culture it yourself... strongly suspect there is a protocol for this... Have you searched the scientific literature re this? You might contact Ed Noga re whether he is aware of such a protocol that is reliable> So, I have resigned myself to 'acquiring' it from the LFS.  I could really use an opinion on my methods.  If you see any problems or source for potential error, please let me know. 1.) Set up 12 3 gallon cubes and one 30 gallon tank 2.) Inorganically cycle 14 (12 small and 2 large) sponge filters using bottled ammonia 3.) When aquariums are ready, buy 42 black Mollies that have been raised in freshwater all their lives 4.) Acclimate them all to full-strength saltwater 5.) Place 2 females in each 3 gallon cube with one small sponge filter 6.) Put 18 males in 30 with the two large sponge filters 7.) Hold all for one month to ensure health 8.) During this time feed a standard pellet food, but add garlic to the food for six of the cubes (12 fish) 9.) Buy three small Blue Tangs (P. hepatus), hopefully infected with Ich 10.) Put the Tangs in the 30 with the 18 male Mollies 11.) Wait a week or so until Mollies in 30 show signs of infection 12.) Sacrifice 6 of the sick males to necropsy.  Hopefully verify they are infected with and only with Cryptocaryon.  Bringing in Amyloodinium too is my biggest obstacle. <Keep this tank completely darkened... should obviate velvet problem> 13.) Transfer the remaining 12 sick males to the cubicles, one in each cube as carriers 14.) Continue to feed garlic to half the specimens, the other half get no treatment at all 15.) Track mortalities I am hoping to be able to see if their is any difference in deaths between the 'treated' and untreated fish.  Also, I am looking to see if there was any difference between the males who were exposed and then got garlic versus the females who had been fed garlic prior to exposure; garlic as a real cure versus garlic as some sort of immune system stimulant/preventative. Thanks a lot, Steven Pro <Your model looks fine... for what it is. In order to make a broader statement re the applicability to marine fishes... you could/might utilize other fish species (perhaps damsels of some species). Good luck with your experiments. Bob Fenner>

Garlic & Ich Hey, Steve... sorry I didn't get back to you on this sooner. Arghhh. Have had a busy week. I'm leaving tomorrow for Cali to visit Bob and will be back Weds. At a glance, the first/only thing that jumps out at me is #11. Waiting only one week with the hope/assumption that Crypt will be contracted my not be adequate. Even if we could have/know no other pathogen is present or could complicate this exposure... some fish simply do not express or contract Crypt in such a short period of time. Bob can/will correct me I hope... but some fish will carry crypt for more than one week (easily) and not show spots, but a keen eye in the early weeks of infection might discover a favored/closed gill or occasional glancing/scratching. Which begs the question (to me at least), at what point are you willing/looking to prove or disprove the efficacy of garlic [i.e.- carrying with no symptoms, carrying with symptoms but no spots, or spots only?]? I understand/believe that fishes with Ich will carry the pathogen for much longer without showing spots (in the gills/other soft tissues) than time with spots (usually the final days/week before death or sudden cure <G>). Although you and I have talked about this experiment a little before, it has only now just dawned on me that perhaps using "spotted" fishes and tracking mortalities on "spotted" infected fishes is not a realistic test of efficacy when such fishes are generally in Dire Straights at that point (the state of duress, not the steel guitar band <G>). Which then makes us address the unfortunate reality that the overwhelming majority of folks only notice a Crypt infection by/when spots on the body are present (and not 2 weeks earlier when the fish(es) favored one gill or scratched). So... the $2 question right now is: should the article/experiment you do be on the efficacy of a dubious treatment for fishes at the most dire point of infection... or... an address to aquarists on how to spot the signs of infection early enough to actually have a good chance of effecting a cure? I'm not sure if my concern above makes sense or is valid... but I am sober right now. Hope it helps with perspective. :) Anthony

Garlic, ich "medications" >Hello Bob... >>Hello, Marina here. >I have problem .. my yellow tang started showing signs of ich about 4 days ago. Since I have a reef, I couldn't add any meds to the tank, so I took the advice of a friend who runs a pet shop and started adding liquid garlic to the food I feed my fish. He said the parasites couldn't stand the taste of the garlic in the fish's system and they'd drop off. >>This is arguable.  Did you know that, because of the life cycle of the ich protozoan they would fall of anyway?  There are *only* two known, proven methods of curing ich (garlic is NOT one of them)--hyposalinity (<1.010) and copper.  I happen to disagree with the use of garlic as an ich curative, there is only evidence that shows it might stimulate feeding, however, all evidence to date in favor of garlic is anecdotal at best.  If I recollect correctly, there was a recent article in Advanced Aquarium (I believe you can find it at http://www.reefs.org ) regarding what garlic can and cannot do.  Do try to check it out. >Well they did in fact drop off after two days.  The tang is now clear.   >>For now.  You don't see any ich right now, this does not mean that the tang is clear, though.  It only means that the parasite has completed one stage of its life cycle and has moved on to another.  This would have happened with or without the use of the garlic. >Now my problem now is... my two black clowns and my potter's angel have something like a body fungus or maybe velvet, I'm not sure. >>Not surprising.  Expect all vertebrates to be stressed at this point, *especially* the Potter's angel.  They really don't perform well in captivity, and are best left to those with extensive experience.  This is outlined on the site as well as Bob's last book, "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist". >It looks patchy, but is taking over there entire body, like a coating.   >>This does sound a bit like velvet, though it could signal that they've now been infected with a particularly heavy ich infestation.  This is not good.  Have you searched the site for treatment and information?  If not, please let me link you--> http://www.wetwebmedia.com/mardisease.htm  also, do search www.reefs.org/library (as well as the archives on site), and do a general Google search. >I started a hospital tank today using water from my reef tank so I didn't shock them anymore and added copper safe to the tank. >>Good, a bit late, but better than never.  Now, you MUST get all the fish in there as well, or you'll never get rid of the ich or velvet (should that prove to be the disease). >Since I put them in...in about a hour's time the slime that's covering there body (whatever it is) is starting to hang off them (kinda stringy).  The fish are now darting around trying to scratch, where they weren't before.  Also the potter is breathing really heavy.  My question is... is this normal and should I use something in conjunction with the copper safe like Maracyn, just in case it is an actual bacterial infection.   >>This sounds as though all the fish are stressed, and there may be several factors occurring.  Without having a box of the meds in front of me I can't tell you whether or not it would be safe to use the two in conjunction, though I believe you can.  My own antibiotic of choice is Spectrogram, then Melafix.  Since you're medicating with the copper anyway (you MUST have a test kit for copper as well) then I suggest either reading the literature that comes with the medication, and if it says nothing then contact the manufacturer.  Also, give all fish a freshwater dip IF (and only if) they are not severely stressed already.  I do suspect you have a raging infesting presenting in these fish, though, and they're very stressed. >Can you use both Coppersafe and Maracyn at the same time?  The fish were eating normal, and the hospital tank is being aerated well. >>It is VERY important that you not allow any buildup of ammonia, nitrites, or nitrates.  Therefore, have on hand enough mixed, fresh saltwater to change out the q/t three times over AT LEAST.  Be sure that the q/t is bare on the bottom, and when you change the water siphon off the entire bottom of the tank well, this will help remove dropped parasitic cysts.  More is definitely better.  Now, you have ALL the fish in quarantine, and you *must* allow the display tank to remain fallow for six weeks MINIMUM.  Being as how you have such a severe infection I'm going to push you strongly to go a full eight weeks fallow before introducing the fish back. >Any help is greatly appreciated.  Gary B. >>Let's get this part out of the way, and we'll move on from there.  You can continue to use the garlic if it seems to stimulate feeding, but also be sure to offer copious amounts of Nori and romaine, as well as the best quality frozen foods you can find.  Also, if the fish are spooky, give them good cover in the form of PVC elbows, and even covering up parts of the q/t tank.

No Vampires Here! Tried the garlic remedy in a 75 gal reef tank, it seems to be working, however the tank stinks like garlic (big surprise!) Yes,  I know I should have set up a quarantine tank, but I didn't have the means nor the time. <Well- I'm glad that you're not using "true" medication in the main system, but do consider such a tank in the future, if possible> Anyway, how do I rid my tank of the smell? P.S  wonderful website very very informative. Rich Monaco II <I would recommend the continuous use of activated carbon, water changes, and aggressive protein skimming. Good luck!  Scott F.>

Garlic Prep.s I am filing FAQ's now. -Steven Pro <Okay> P.S. I am working on finishing another article. I have heard you mention garlic use and wanted your opinion. The FAQ is full of other people's, but not yours. The only thing you say is Leng makes the freshest. <He does... unless folks make their own right then and there... Useful as an adjunct to other health regimens... not a cure or a cure all IMO/E. Bob Fenner>

Garlic use (testimonial) I have tried the garlic oil soaking cure and it looks to be working very well . I haven't lost a single fish since implementing this therapy. I was wondering how long to soak the food and for how long should I do this <much in archives to be of help I suspect: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/garlicfaqs.htm best regards, Anthony> JimGorski

Garlic use Mr. Fenner: Wonderful site, I have a quick question on garlic use, must admit never heard of its use with marine fish till I found your sight. Seem some readers have very good success. I wanted to know what brand or kind of liquid garlic to use, as a precaution and where to get it. <Some folks "make it themselves", others go "store-bought". The fresher the better if you're looking at DIY. The best brand/make I'm aware of is Leng Sy's Ecosystem Aquarium brand. He puts a huge amount of money into preparation of the cloves, adding vitamins, minerals. Really top-notch> I tried local GNC no luck but market has a product called garlic juice made by Reese, ingredients are garlic juice, vinegar, salt, needs no refrigeration. I want to make sure vinegar is OK imagine its a very small amount?  <Mmm, shouldn't be a problem> Also I assume should add a drop or two on frozen food and let thaw in fridge a little while, or over night. Thank you very much, Pat Reinhart <Good procedure. Bob Fenner>

Garlic and Ick <<JasonC here, Bob is away diving>> hey can you tell me how to get rid of ich in my tank, m6y clownfish has it , I bought a fish and he gave it to him , and I one woman told me to soak their food in garlic juice, I did that, and haven't had any luck yet, I need something to do without having a quarantine tank, I only have this 55 gallon tank, , , , , I have a Mandarin green goby and a green brittle star and a snowflake eel and a choc star, and none of them have ich , and this clown has for two days, <<In my experience the various garlic treatments work better as a preventative rather than a cure. I think the only exception to this is gut/digestive parasites which often affect puffers, etc. More on that here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/garlicfaqs.htm - There is a fairly extensive regimen to make a best attempt at ridding a system if this is indeed what you have. You would be best advised to invest in a quarantine system and begin using that from here on out to hold newcomers until the coast is clear, so to speak. You can read up more on quarantine here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/quaranti.htm You should probably wait a little while and see how this plays out before you declare it ick. Sometimes simple stress displays as the same symptoms.>> pet stores says the brittle star and choc star shouldn't get it cause they are scavengers and they eat the parasite, is this true, what about the ell,???? <<they are correct that those starfish are scavengers, and perhaps, if they were to run into a parasite, they might eat it, but there's very little probability that they could impact an ick outbreak. As for catching ick, starfish have their own set of gremlins, very different from fish, they wouldn't catch ick from your fish. Eels are pretty good at ignoring these problems [most of the time], but if things reach epidemic proportions, then the tables may turn. Do read up on parasites and marine tanks: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasiti.htm >> am kinda depressed cause my eel and my green brittle are my two favorite things I own <<cheer up, read up, and then consider carefully what you might do next.>> please respond thanks a million kirtis <<Cheers, J -- >>

Treating with garlic Mr. Fenner, I would first off like to thank you for a wonderful website, and an excellent book. I just wanted to respond to an article I read on your site (Clown Trigger) it had to do with a recurring white spot on the eye. I have a Niger trigger that was going through the same thing. You suggested trying some fresh garlic in his diet for a few days and that has cleared him up completely. I would have never guessed it. Thanks again, Gavin <Glad to hear of your success, your Triggerfish's improvement. Be chatting my friend. Bob Fenner>

Tried Garlic Oil Arghhh! Ok, so now...how do I get RID of it....I decided to try food soaked in garlic oil to get rid of the dreaded "black spot disease" on my yellow tang (sounds like something out of 'Treasure Island'). Now my protein skimmer wont skim (duh) and I've got a nice oil slick going (double DUH). I guess I'll try a good water change. What a mess. Anyone have any better ideas on how to get rid of the oil? Wes <Yes. Try draping white, un-scented absorbent paper towels over the surface... dunking a plastic pitcher or bowl at its lip in the tank... to remove the upper layer of water. Bob Fenner>

Kelly the Puffer Queen Speaks! (Puffer health, garlic)  Hi guys, I had a similar problem in several of my tanks about 5 years ago. I have since quit using copper in my main display tanks and reserve it for my quarantine tanks which all new fish spend at least 2 -3 weeks in before moving "up the ranks". I have attributed my "strike" against copper to garlic use. I feed all of my fish (puffers, tangs, rabbits, groupers, sharks, squirrels, clowns, garibaldi, damsels, Porkfish, remora and blenny) garlic at least once a week. When they are in quarantine they get it daily for 5 - 7 days and then twice a week. If my fish are stressed or if I notice a spot or two, I feed garlic a couple days in a row. What brand of garlic? I do like Leng's Garlic elixir in that it has both the garlic as well as the vitamins and therefore is less work for me. If I run out, I will use my original method of garlic which is the garlic softgel capsules. You can find these at Wal-Mart, Target, K-Mart, Drug Emporium, Meijer, Kroger or any health food store (although you will pay more at the health food stores). I poke a hole in the softgel and squirt the oil onto the food - freeze dried krill absorbs the oil the best. I usually use one softgel per fish but with my 18 - 24 + inch puffers, I use 2 - 3 per fish. This method takes time and if you do not like the smell of garlic, I would suggest using gloves and buy candles or air fresheners. I have gotten used to the smell and I have definitely noticed a difference in my puffers. I have also found garlic to be a good antihelminth. This was my original use for garlic in my puffers and later discovered that my fish were not requiring any ich medications. Most fish come into the trade with some form of worms and when a fish is stressed the worms that often live in symbiosis become opportunistic. Hope this helps. Let me know if I can be of any other assistance. Kelly aka PQ <Thanks much Kelly. Will send on/post. Be seeing you. Bob Fenner>

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