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FAQs about the Yellow-Tail Blue, Palette, Regal, Hippo Tang Disease/Health 4

FAQs on Paracanthurus Tang Disease: PYTB Tang Disease 1, Pacific YTB Tang Disease 2, PYTB Tang Disease 3, YTBT Health 5, YTBT Health 6, YTBT Disease 7, YTBT Disease 8, YTBT Disease 9, YTBT Disease , & Tangs/Rabbitfishes & Crypt,
FAQs on Paracanthurus Tang Disease by Category: Diagnosis, Environmental, Nutritional, Social, Trauma, Pathogenic (plus see Tangs/Rabbitfishes & Crypt), Genetic, Treatments

Related Articles: The Genus Paracanthurus,

Related FAQs: Pacific YTB Tang FAQs 2, Pacific YTB Tang FAQs 1Pacific YTB Tang FAQs 2, Pacific YTB Tang FAQs 3, Pacific YTB Tang FAQs 4, PYTB Tang IDPYTB Tang Behavior, PYTB Tang Compatibility, PYTB Tang Selection, PYTB Tang Systems, PYTB Tang Feeding, PYTB Tang Reproduction, Surgeons In General, Tang ID, Selection, Tang Behavior, Compatibility, Systems, Feeding, Disease,

Regal tang discoloration, HLLE in Tang   2/4/07 Over the past few months my regal tang has begin to display a very unusual look.  A lot of the blue appearance has been replaced with a colorless, transparent look.  It's most obvious around the head, but small spots pepper the body.  It doesn't seem to bother the fish because it eats like a champ and doesn't scrape on the rocks or sand.  This is the only fish in the tank exhibiting any symptoms at all. I have a 125 reef tank, and all parameters are excellent. Could this me some kind of fungus, malnourishment, or the results of accidental scraping or maybe coral (SPS, torch, fuzzy Shrooms, Zoas/Palys) stings? <Looks to be the start of HLLE...search on WWM re:....diet/tank chemistry are usually to blame. AJ>

Regal tang as a possible disease vector...  12/10/06 Hello crew, I have a question for you.  I purchased a Regal Tang from Live Aquaria's Divers Den a week ago today (the exact description was African Yellow Belly Regal Tang Var.). <Neat> They called me last Monday saying the fish had some scratches and they wanted to hold it for a while to make sure it was healthy and didn't develop a secondary infection (hopefully the truth). <Yes... good of them> They are supposed to ship the fish tomorrow and I would receive it Tuesday.  I work at a LFS here in Michigan and know the problems with these fish, they seem to always get ich but most of the time get over it without any treatment.  We have developed a system at the store where we put all moderate to difficult tangs in the reef system in large tanks and they seem to do much better because of the extra swimming room and hiding spots and we rarely lose any fish in that system. <Ahhh!> Now to my question, since I know the fish will likely develop ich (had it in my tank before, no fatalities) and most likely get over it in a few weeks, would it be better to place the fish directly in my 92 gallon reef tank with lots of hiding spots or place it in my 29 gallon Bio Cube that has only been setup a couple of months? <Not the cube... unless this was going to be simply for quarantine, observation... ahead of its placement in the 92...> The 29 gallon has very few places to hide and only has one fish in it, a Starry Blenny.  My personal feeling is that the fish would do better in my 92 gallon tank because it would be able to hide and swim about when it wanted and feed on any algae on the rocks, not to mention it is a well established system. <But... is "it" worth the possibility of introducing virulent pathogens? Not IMO> My 92 gallon tank has a Clown, Kole Tang, and a Blue Flavivertex Pseudochromis, all about 3 inches long.  The Regal Tang (a 4 inch fish) will be my last addition to the 92 gallon tank.  I am a little worried about the Regal Tang because of the health issue Live Aquaria said it had, but am hopeful with their honesty and the fact that they have had the fish at least 2 weeks makes me feel a little better about it adapting to my tank and hopefully eating right away.  I forgot to mention I have read extensively about this fish on your site, many of the FAQ's and the article that says placing them in your main system without quarantine is best because of the nature of this particular fish. <I would still, at least, run this Paracanthurus through a prophylactic bath... see WWM Re> I have thought about this issue long and hard and have discussed it on the forum, and have emailed forum members about the best way to go about this.  I always research everything I buy for my tank before purchasing it and have not lost a coral or a fish because of it.  Your opinion would be very valued and will be the last one I receive before picking up the fish.  Thank you very much for your thoughts and time, Ryan Nienhuis (again).  I will send you a picture as soon as I receive the fish.  Thanks again. <Again, to be clear... I would NOT simply acclimate and place this fish in a main/permanent display... Not worth the risk of introducing Crypt, other disease organisms in a hyper-infective state... A dip/bath... at least. Bob Fenner>
Re: Regal tang... and lost WWM mail...   12/11/06
For some reason I did not receive your reply on my email <Bizarre... and this is happening more and more...> however I looked it up on today's FAQ's so I know what was said. <Ah, good> Anyway thanks for the quick reply and yes my intentions of putting it in the 29 gallon were for observation/quarantine only, not a permanent home.  Thanks again. <Ah, very good. Cheers, BobF>

Hippo tang - 10/17/06 Hi all, <Hi Dave, MacL here with you today. Not sure what happened to your mail so if this is a second response just ignore it> I have a Blue Hippo Tang in a 110 gallon FOWLR system.  His tankmates are a Sailfin Tang, Volitans Lion, Snowflake Eel, and a Lunare Wrasse.  pH is at 8.2, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate < 5 usually.  Temperature is about 82, give or take a degree.   I've had this fish since early June.  He is the most recent addition to the system, the Lunare Wrasse is the second to most recent.   I've noticed lately that the Lunare Wrasse has been doing a combination of chasing with the Hippo and sort of "mouthing" his side, at which time he jerks forward a bit and they go their separate ways.  I've watched it get worse and worse, until finally on Sunday I removed the wrasse from the system and placed him into a holding tank running off the same filtration system as the main tank.  I suspect that since the Wrasse was the second to last fish established, he is bullying the Hippo out of territoriality, but since the other fish were there first, he doesn't bother them.  I am hoping that by taking the wrasse out for a few days and moving some things around (which I have not done yet) I can break the territoriality and everyone can live peacefully.  Or, would you recommend against this Wrasse with these tankmates? <Unfortunately I have personally had some bad experiences with the aggression of Lunare Wrasses and would recommend them going in with some more aggressive fish or in an absolutely huge tank personally.> The Hippo started flashing repeatedly just prior to the Wrasses' removal, several times per minute against rocks, equipment, substrate, whatever he could find.  In the past, he's done this but never this bad and it's always eventually stopped after a couple days.  Also, he has developed what seem to be scratches, I assume from the flashing (?).   <Definitely possible, he could have some parasites bothering him. You don't mention whether he was quarantined or not so if not, there might be some parasites lingering.> Its also possible he might have some marks left from encounters with the lunare.> Now that I've removed the Wrasse, I've found that the Hippo seems to be spending more time laying around, sort of half on his side.  True, this is supposedly normal for this species, but I've never observed it in this particular specimen.  Could it be that without the Wrasse chasing him he has move time to, for lack of a better term, "relax," and what I'm seeing with the laying and flashing is actually the first time the fish has had a chance to show "normal behavior?" <How long was he in the tank before you added the lunare? Did you have time to determine what would be his normal behavior before you added an additional fish? I always try to recommend months of settling in and leering and getting his position in the tank before I add another fish.> Furthermore, he seems to always be laying around my large (3" or so) strawberry hermit crab.  I am wondering if he's thinking he's going to get a cleaning (fish are dumb, after all), and this could be an indication of an as-yet-unseen parasite infection?  I don't have any other inverts in the system other than 2 of these hermits and a long spine urchin. <I have to disagree, with the fish are dumb statement though because in my experience they are very, very intelligent and manage to survive in places and ways that are unique.> I know how nervous this species can get, and I am reluctant to remove him from the system for either quarantine or a dip, as I don't want to stress him further (plus he's fast and I'd tear the system apart catching him) so I'd like to get a clearer idea as to whether or not such action is really necessary at this point.  He still eats greedily.   <Dave I have had good luck with antiparasitic foods and using garlic in situations such as you are describing. Where you "wonder" whether you have a problem and you just aren't sure. In those cases, if the fish will eat them I have used garlic, etc. to in a way prevent an outburst from happening. But I would let things settle in the tank for several months before I even considered adding another fish. I've been adding fish to my tank on an average of 1 a year.  Good luck Dave and let me know how it goes. MacL> Thanks again guys, Dave
Pacific Blue Tang Harassed by Resident Wrasse, News at 11 - 10/10/06 
Hi all, <Greetings -- Emerson with you today.> I have a Blue Hippo Tang in a 110 gallon FOWLR system.  His tankmates are a Sailfin Tang, Volitans Lion, Snowflake Eel, and a Lunare Wrasse.  pH is at 8.2, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate < 5 usually.  Temperature is about 82, give or take a degree.    <Not enough tank for these fish I'm afraid.> I've had this fish since early June.  He is the most recent addition to the system, the Lunare Wrasse is the second to most recent.    <All quarantined I hope?> I've noticed lately that the Lunare Wrasse has been doing a combination of chasing with the Hippo and sort of "mouthing" his side, at which time he jerks forward a bit and they go their separate ways. I've watched it get worse and worse, until finally on Sunday I removed the wrasse from the system and placed him into a holding tank running off the same filtration system as the main tank.  I suspect that since the Wrasse was the second to last fish established, he is bullying the Hippo out of territoriality, but since the other fish were there first, he doesn't bother them.  I am hoping that by taking the wrasse out for a few days and moving some things around (which I have not done yet) I can break the territoriality and everyone can live peacefully. <Not likely. Of the Thalassoma I have kept and seen these guys are somewhat on and off in terms of aggression. Try a separation period of at least a week. If that doesn't work then either the wrasse or its offending fish needs to go.> Or, would you recommend against this Wrasse with these tankmates?    <Thalassoma wrasse can exist peacefully with most semi-aggressive+ fish without issue given proper settings and placement order. With your stocking list it should have been the last fish added.> The Hippo started flashing repeatedly just prior to the Wrasses' removal, several times per minute against rocks, equipment, substrate, whatever he could find.  In the past, he's done this but never this bad and it's always eventually stopped after a couple days.  Also, he has developed what seem to be scratches, I assume from the flashing (?).    Now that I've removed the Wrasse, I've found that the Hippo seems to be spending more time laying around, sort of half on his side.  True, this is supposedly normal for this species, but I've never observed it in this particular specimen.  Could it be that without the Wrasse chasing him he has move time to, for lack of a better term, "relax," and what I'm seeing with the laying and flashing is actually the first time the fish has had a chance to show "normal behavior?" <It is surely enjoying the lack of harassment, but scratching as you describe is not normal behavior. This is a definite sign of stress.> Furthermore, he seems to always be laying around my large (3" or so) strawberry hermit crab.  I am wondering if he's thinking he's going to get a cleaning (fish are dumb, after all), and this could be an indication of an as-yet-unseen parasite infection?   <Lying and glancing are common behaviors of the Pacific Blue. Due to the stress yours has received you should keep an eye on it for parasites, proper healing of its scratches and general malaise. Don't hesitate to place it in quarantine if you don't notice an improvement in a few days.>   I don't have any other inverts in the system other than 2 of these hermits and a longspine urchin. I know how nervous this species can get, and I am reluctant to remove him from the system for either quarantine or a dip, as I don't want to stress him further (plus he's fast and I'd tear the system apart catching him) so I'd like to get a clearer idea as to whether or not such action is really necessary at this point.   <Which is worse, tearing down the tank to catch a fish or replacing a tank's worth of fish? If only every fish was as easy to catch as my Lunare was. All it took was a dangling krill in one hand and the fish would swim into my other hand, net, Tupperware etc. It would be in the best interest of your tank to trade in either the wrasse or the tang.> He still eats greedily.    <Good to hear! Nori or flake food soaked in Selcon would be a great addition to this fishes diet.> Thanks again guys, <Best of luck Dave!> Dave

Hippo Tang Tail Problem   9/26/06 Hi All, <Tim> I searched your site for an hour or so and couldn't find an answer to my problem, but perhaps I overlooked it.  If so, I apologize. <Okay> I have a hippo tang (on the smaller side of medium sized), yellow tang, two percula clowns and a royal Gramma, along with various hermit crabs and a coral banded shrimp in a 90 gallon tank.  My water quality is excellent and my salinity and temperature are good too.  When I got the hippo tang about 6 months ago it had a small piece of it's tail missing.  It looked like a tiny bite had been taken out of the very end of its tail, but otherwise it was happy and healthy.  After QT I placed him in the main tank without any problems at all.  He still swims all around, eats voraciously (mixture of Nori and herbivore/Spirulina pellets) and seems completely content.  My issue is that the piece of his tail has still not filled back in. <Mmm, sometimes happens>   It is a little larger now, but is not discolored anywhere around the edges.  It doesn't look bad, but I am worried that it could be a parasite or something that won't get better unless I do something specific.  Any thoughts or suggestions would be great. Thanks Loyal Reader, Tim <Highly unlikely to be a parasite or infectious agent at play here... some injuries involve nervous damage... likely here... and never "repair", color in. I would leave all as is. Bob Fenner>

Too Many Tangs in a 135...Now the Health Issues Begin - 09/15/06 Hello, <<Howdy>> I recently bought two Blue Hippo tangs for my 135 gal. tank. <<Mmm...too many for this tank...barely large enough for one in my opinion.  These tangs grow to about a foot in length...are beefy, active, and a bit "skittish" as tangs go.  They need very large quarters with LOTS of swimming room along with convenient "bolt holes" in which to dart when they feel threatened.  I feel this species of tang is particularly susceptible to developmental retardation (manifesting in health/behavioral disorders) when kept in too small an environment>> I also have 3 clownfish, a gray Naso tang, a purple Firefish, two blue-yellow tail damsels, a mandarin goby, and a cleaner shrimp. <<A Naso tang too?...(sigh)>> It's been about a month since I've had my fish now and a couple days ago I noticed white spots on my blue hippo tangs. <<And so it begins...>> I've got about 200lbs of live rock in my tank which they like to go into a lot. <<Indeed>> Their spots have not yet got away yet and was wondering if I should be worried. <<Never really ever "goes away" (crypt will be/is always present in the system), but under "optimum" conditions the symptoms of a light outbreak will often resolve themselves.  The fact that this system is overstocked with three large (potentially) tangs does not bode well>> They seem to be swimming and eating fine and none of my other fish have them. <<...yet>> Anyways, I'd greatly appreciate it if you could give me some advice as of what to do and what could be causing them. <<Please read here ( http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ichartmar.htm).  You will need to remove the afflicted fish and treat in a separate hospital tank.  Ideally, you will need to remove and observe (treat only if necessary) "all the fish" and allow the system to sit fallow for six weeks>> Thank you so much for you time. <<Happy to assist>> Sincerely, Mai <<Regards, EricR>>

Hippo Tang with Ich (Temperature Fluctuations) - 08/13/06 Hi Crew - I've read thru your site countlessly, thank you for all your help in advance! <<Hello Linda!...I think we've "chatted" before...This is Eric in SC>> 100 gal. tank with wet/dry filter...1.  My blue hippo tang started out with a few white spots, but weren't quite sure whether it was the fine micro bubbles from the Hagen powerheads that always shoot out these dreaded bubbles on spurts OR whether it was ich. <<Hmm...though true "micro-bubbles" can be problematic, I've never found the occasional "spurt" of bubbles from a powerhead to be a real problem>> 2.  I've had a hard time getting the tank temp below 84 degrees, due to the weather being dreadfully hot even with air conditioning!, <<Indeed, am quite familiar with the "weather" you speak of; but 84-degrees is not "too high" in my opinion>> so decided to unplug one of my two heaters to bring down the temp some, down to 82 degrees.  Trying to get it down to 80 so experimenting, unplugged the 2nd heater last night, this morning temp down to 78 degrees. <<Mmm...sounds like the heaters are set too high maybe?>> With this much temp fluctuation, my blue hippo tang has more white spots AND also some black freckles around face. <<Not surprising...>> He is NOT scratching and seems to be perfectly fine and eating well along with VitaChem soaked seaweed, which he loves.  What has caused the black freckles? <<Likely a reaction to the environmental stresses you mention>> Should I try to catch him, dip him, and quarantine with copper solution? <<If you have the facilities for such, absolutely...and the sooner the better.  If you have other fish present you may find you will need to treat all...and let the tank sit fallow for 5-6 weeks>> Thank every so much. Linda in GA    <<A pleasure to assist.  EricR>>

Hippo Tang keeps floating to top   7/4/06 Hello, I have a problem and this seemed like the best place to find a solution... <Okay...> I have an 8-month-old 110-gallon tank. About 2 weeks ago I bought a beautiful Hippo Tang. I am aware of the 'problems' that Hippo Tangs can have such as forming ick from hiding under rocks and rubbing on them and how they have a reputation for being shy... <So you of course quarantined this specimen...?> so I wasn't too surprised when it kept itself hidden behind some rocks after I put him in initially. <Not> I figured I would give him a few days to adjust. However, after 2 weeks it was still not coming out at all even to eat. I decided to take him out today b/c I was worried about whether or not he was sick and I would not want him infecting the rest of the tank. <Would be too late if so...> It was then that I discovered it doesn't have ick. Instead, it looks as if it's stomach is bloated which is causing him to float to the top. This would explain why it was hiding under the rocks to keep from floating to the top. I know that with time, it will eventually die b/c it wont eat due to the stress it's experiencing. <Unusual...> Please give me any advice you can about helping my Hippo Tang get the air out of it's belly. Thanks! Cassie <... Likely Epsom Salt in a treatment tank... Details offered on WWM. See the search tool for WWM or the indices. Bob Fenner>

Hippo Tang with fungus or Necrotic tissue?   6/8/06 Hello WWM Team, <Eric> I have a 1 inch hippo tang <A bit small... die much more easily started under 2-3 inches...> in a 10 gallon quarantine tank with 11 lbs. live rock. I have had her for 1 week and 3 days. She has been eating great since I got her. I give her a blended variety of frozen fish/meaty foods mostly, along with some Kent garlic additive. She always showed me her left side which looks brilliant and has beautiful coloration. Then after 1 week I noticed her right side which seemed to have some fungus like patches, but it flowed a bit like it might be skin tissue or necrotic tissue. I could hardly get a good look, but it is around her eye and partly down her body but only on the right side.  I have seen these patches which have grown in size for the last 3 days, but she is swimming more freely in the tank, still eating voraciously and greeting me more readily when I show my mug at her tank. <Good signs> She used to do some flashing/flicking of her body on Saturday and Sunday, but not doing it much now. <The species does flick, flash quite a bit naturally> I do 15% water changes every 3 - 4 days. There is only a 40 gallon mechanical whisper filter. The water is Alk: 1.6 (low); pH: 8.2; Nitrate: 10; SG 1.0235; Temp 81 F. The only extraordinary thing I can say that really could have caused this is during the heat wave here in PA recently the tanks temp was 85 F for a little over 2 days which I tried to get down slowly and did eventually with fans blowing, hanging ice packs in Ziploc bags and AC on in the house. It still took over 2 days to finally reach 81 F which still isn't my ideal, but it is stable. Could that temperature hike have done this? <Mmm, not by itself... likely ongoing issues with capture, shipping... perhaps a bit of aggression from/with other fishes in transit> Any other ideas beside regular water changes? <Vitamin additions to the food, water... I would not (at this time) avail myself of antimicrobials, dyes, metal solutions...> In a few weeks time I will move her to the main tank if she doesn't come down with any other problems like ich. Your wisdom or at least good advice is appreciated. Eric <This outgoing specimen will likely heal and do fine with the good care, protocol you detail here. Bob Fenner>

Sick Regal Blue/Hippo Tang...Diet Issue?  5/16/06 Hello Crew! <Hello Ann> My Blue Tang "Dori, of course" seems to be sick.  I have read your forums and researched the disease section and it doesn't seem to help me with her symptoms.  I have had this tang appx. 2-1/2 months.  She was about 3/4" long when I purchased her and now she has grown to about 1-1/2".  When I first got her I was well advised of the risk with ick and I dipped her before adding her to my tank in Organicure and water from my tank in a separate container due to my corals.  The LFS told me they were running Copper in their tank as a precaution and I felt comfortable being so well-advised.  Of course after a week in my tank she got ick and I treated it with Kick-Ick and it worked wonderful.  It was a slow treatment and none of my other fish were infected.  I was under the impression that once marine fish got ick that they never get it again.  Is this true?  <No> Anyway, Dori has been doing great!  She swims openly out in the tank and tends to be quite curious with my other fish who tolerate her nicely.  She eats extremely well.  I feed all frozen foods to include Cyclop-Eeze, Brine Shrimp, Mysis, Emerald Entree, sometimes squid and Krill.  Recently I have noticed a little clouding of her eyes, some gray patches (2 or 3) along her body, fins seem a little tattered, and a lot of scratching/flashing.  She is eating well and no other fish pick on her at all.  She sleeps up top in my tank behind the powerhead.  These symptoms are in the morning.  As the day goes on these symptoms seem to deteriorate except for the flashing and the rough-appearing fins.  All the other fish are very healthy-appearing and are not showing any symptoms.  I have her in a 55 gal with appx.  30 lbs of live rock and a ship wreck.  My other fish are a Dragon Wrasse, Fire fish, bar goby, maroon clown, Banggai Cardinal, Coral Beauty, 2 coral-banded shrimp, 1 fire cleaner shrimp and 4 feather dusters.  <Do need more live rock, tangs should naturally hide in the rockwork at night or when danger is sensed.  Will feel much more comfortable with natural retreats.> I have a few corals too, bubble coral, branching hammer, colt, cabbage, Xenia, pipe organ, asst mushrooms and asst polyps.  My tank is 5 months old with crushed coral and 2 bio-wheel power filters with 2 powerheads.  I hope this is enough information for you to help me.  My water parameters seem to be perfect except my nitrates are a little high, but the LFS told me not to be concerned when they were that low.  I do a 10% water change every week or 20% every other week depending on my schedule.  I clean my filters 1 to 2 x  week.  Please help me and Dori.  I am so sorry if I have given you too much information.  I thought I was supposed to, as I noticed others on the forum do the same. <FYI, not a good idea to buy tangs this small, most are difficult to acclimate.  Sounds to me like Dori may need some vitamins.  Try soaking the food with Selcon and it wouldn't hurt to add some Garlic Xtreme to the system to help combat fungal and bacterial infections.  Are you feeding any Ocean Nutrition Seaweed Selects?  A freeze dried algae product that tangs love and need in their diet.  Hope this helps you out.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks, <You're welcome.> Ann

Hippo Tang With Dotted Line On Sides, A.K.A. HLLE - 04/17/2006 Dear Crew, <Hi Mike.> I have a problem with my Hippo Tang. I looked on the site, but since I have absolutely no idea what it could be, I didn't know what to search for so my searches resulted in nothing. <Try Google searching with the symptoms, easier than trying to guess where to start reading.> The fish appears to have, on both sides, <A good clue.> a white line, dotted. It is faint, so i can't tell if it is raised. The line starts above the eye and runs through the black portion of the side. <I see. Sounds like this could be HLLE (head and lateral line erosion).> The fish is acting normally except for occasionally scratching itself. I am treating it with CopperSafe at the moment. <Stop this, not going to help you. This is likely a simple case of poor diet. If still new/faint, can be quickly reversed. Curable at any rate.> I hope you can help. <Read up here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/hllefaqs.htm and through the related links. Be sure you know of and meet your tangs nutritional needs.> Thanks, Mike <Sure thing. - Josh>

Sick baby Blue Tangs- Regal-(Paracanthurus hepatus)    4/4/06 Hi WWM Crew, I have 2 baby Tangs (2-3 cm) and 2 False Clowns (same size) in a 60 litre tank. All parameters look good .... SG 1022, PH 8.1. Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrate 10. The tank has been up and running since early November 2005 and I added my 2 clowns in early December. I water change 25% fortnightly and test water parameters 1-2 times a week always revealing above results. In mid February my wife comes home with the 2 tangs purchased from a favourite LFS (very trusted) and all 4 have been getting along beautifully, playing and even sleeping together in a plastic anemone. I have seen the tangs laying on their sides at times and then straightening up and playing around again. <Natural behavior... but should have been quarantined...> BUT on Sunday (Aussie time) .. they both seemed to be doing this quite often, even lying against each other and sinking to the bottom and just lying there for minutes at a time then dart off and run into a rock or something ... I also noticed their colour has changed (faded) and their breathing has gotten heavier. I kept my eye on them at times during the day and they seemed to be doing it more frequently. I thought, something isn't right, so I feed them all some flakes to observe there reaction and only one of the tangs ate !! I have been feeding them all brine shrimp, flakes, Nori etc. I might add that I also have a 400 litre reef tank as well as 400 litre freshwater tank for 4 years now and have only lost a few freshwater fish only.  (this hobby soaks up all my time .... I love it) Back to the problem, I immediately acclimated the tangs to my QT and they showed signs of improvement, one more than the other. I made a 50% water change at lunch time and in the afternoon returned the tangs to their tank with the clowns (youngest son hit the QT with a soccer ball and cracked it). <Yikes. No kicking in the house!> One of the tangs is swimming around OK and playing with the clowns and eating and then all of a sudden drops to the bottom and lays there, the other one is still laying on the bottom breathing heavily (has a quick 5 second swim then stops again). Getting late I left them be and the next morning expecting them to be dead they're both still breathing (rapidly) the same one still swimming and eating and then dropping to bottom, the other is still on the bottom breathing rapidly. Their colour has come back but they just can't seem to get over whatever it is doing this to them. I changed water again this afternoon (10%) which I will continue to do daily incase some thing has gotten into the tank and poisoned it. <Not likely...> Maybe the wife fed them after using hand cream or something or the kids had something on their hands ????? The clowns are hardy I know and carry on as if nothings happened !! I'm lost, any ideas ??? I can't see any HLLE !!! Thanks Heaps ! Rick Sydney OZ. <The much more likely scenario is simple "stress" for these tiny two... leading to blood cell pack volume loss... best to place such new fishes into quarantine immediately and leave them to rest for a few weeks... Being caught, handled... is very stressful. I do hope yours recover at this point. Am torn re advising to move them back to QT... more stress might be worse. Bob Fenner> Re: Sick baby Blue Tangs- Regal-(Paracanthurus hepatus) Bob Fenner  - 04/05/2006 Hi Crew, <Rick> I just wanted to let you know your advice of  "<The much more likely scenario is simple "stress" for these tiny two... leading to blood cell pack volume loss... best to place such new fishes into quarantine immediately and leave them to rest for a few weeks... Being caught, handled... is very stressful. I do hope yours recover at this point. Am torn re advising to move them back to QT... more stress might be worse. Bob Fenner>"  has worked well. (( I left them in the main tank so as not to "stress them anymore than need be" )) The new "tiny two" are up and playing together once again !!! They look happier than ever, it's like they've had a new lease of life. ( and I'm loving it ) Thank you, Thank you, Thank you for your prompt reply - I hate to think how many questions you and your crew must receive everyday (hundreds I guess) and to receive an answer only "24 hours later" is a sure sign of absolute dedication !! Outstanding effort WWM !! I applaud all involved !! Regards  Rick Down Under. <Thank you for this follow-up. Bob Fenner>

Oh my god, Help me!!!! SW Parasite problem? A good case for Hitchhiker's Guide: Don't Panic   4/1/06 Oh my god, I can't believe I have a problem with a parasite and I can't find any info about it anywhere. Please help me. I have a 150 gallon tall tank. I have a 3" yellow tang, 2 baby hippos 1 1/2", 1 PJ cardinal, 2 black clowns, algae bunny, 2 small false percula clowns. Three days ago I noticed my smaller of the two hippo tangs to have a small black spot on her side. Not like a grain of salt. BIGGER! Looked more like a big piece of poop stuck to her side. She didn't seem to bothered with it until day 2. On the second day she began to scratch almost every few minutes. I discovered it could be a parasite so I called 8 LFS in the phonebook, nobody knew what it was. <Might be "nothing" pathogenic> I qt ALL my fish prior to placing in my display tank. She was in QT  6 weeks... She looked good so I placed her in the display. I had the water tested at LFS yesterday. <Water chemistry changes with time, transport... for what you have invested here, I would get/use my own kits> He said everything is great with your water. That isn't you problem. Now today she has a gapping hole in her side and looks like something is in the re. Help. The tank is 3 1/2 foot deep <Yikes! Custom!> so this will be fun trying to catch and put in QT. It takes two people to do this on each side of the tank to catch the fish. FUN, FUN, Today I noticed the smaller black clown has the same spot on this side. Help me please. The spot is as big as, if not bigger than the balled end of a straight pin. The hippo is not eating as well as she has been. I need Big help before she dies. All other fish have been in the tank 6 months now. Tank has been running w no problems for 8 months now. Thanks in advance for your help. I sure do need it. Julie <Mmm, I would drain the tank down to facilitate all the tangs removal, and dip them per what you read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/YellowTang.htm re Paravortex (which this likely is) and here: http://wetwebmedia.com/dips_baths.htm and the linked files above... and move the fish to QT to avoid re-infestation... for a month or more and all should be well. Oh, and I would add a purposeful cleaner organism here. Also covered on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Blue Hippo and Ich   4/1/06 Dear Crew,  <Ben> Sorry for bothering you with such a normal question, but I really am confused because I get so many answers to the ich problem.  My blue hippo has recently been experiencing an outbreak of ich.  My puffer has had a few pieces of ich on him as well, but everyone else seems fine.  The hippo has had it for two days and the puffer has had it for a week.  I have several other fish in my aquarium and do not have a large enough quarantine tank to remove all of my fish.  I only have a 10-gallon and would need to set that up.  Since I have an anemone in the tank would Ich-X work or should I wait it out.  My tank is a 125-gallon and I have only an anemone for my invertebrate population.  What would you suggest?  I would love to do hyposalinity, but the anemone is a problem and copper would be fabulous but then it would be in the tank and I could never add corals or inverts again. This is frustrating.  <Ben, all covered on WWM.  Read here. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/tangdisfaq2.htm  and here. http://www.wetwebmedia.com/treatmen.htm  James (Salty Dog)> Ben

Unusual Blue Tang Disease   2/23/06 Hello, <Hi there> I have a Blue Tang in a Q tank.  He had ich, but seems to be cured of it for a couple of weeks now.  I used hypo-salinity, fresh water dips, and some medication to treat him.  He gained a bacterial infection in between treatments, but now is doing much better (after treatment for that). Now, he has two different problems.  One is that he has several areas on the sides of his body that are discolored. <Not a big deal... these will re-color with improvement in the environment> The areas look like he has light fading in his normal coloration.  I think this may simply be due to stress. I have stopped dipping him and have tried to leave him alone as much as possible, and these areas seem to be getting better. <Yes> He looks perfect from 3 feet away, but very much affected from 6 inches. The other, more critical (?) problem is that he has a pimple on one side of his abdomen.  He had this once before, in the same spot, when I was treating him for ich.  It looks just like a pimple on someone's face, but there is not a substantial "whitehead."  It is pointy on the top.  The total size is only about 1/16" (width and height) on a 2.5" fish.  This is easier to see than the dis-coloration, but indiscernible from a few feet.  I caught him flashing on that side a few times on one occasion.  Is this a bacterial infection? <Not likely... and not likely "treatable" or something you want to fool with, nor catching...> I would like to get him back into the main tank some day. Thanks, John <I would do this at your earliest convenience. Bob Fenner>

Paracanthurus/Blue Tang ... health  3/4/06 Mr. Fenner & Crew, <Bryan.> A while back wrote to you about my very tiny 1" blue tang which I suspected to have ich shortly after introduction to quarantine.  You suggested a biological treatment before chemical because of the size.  Well, here's an update and a few questions.  Biological cleaning barely helped the little guy so I did a four day treatment of copper and after a rough 2 weeks everything seems to be fine. It has been 6 weeks now and the he's doing great and as almost doubled in size. <Good to hear.> Currently he is still in the 20gal tank that I first put him in to treat and grow a little before moving to the big tank.  My question is what would be a good size for him to be before I put him in the display tank.  My concern is the other fish he will be joining (mainly the purple tang - 5").  Should I wait until he gets about 3-4"? <Might be better to put in there now.  The small size of the blue tang may not be recognized as a threat to the purple tang.  Keep in mind that regardless of size there will more than likely be a skirmish or two.> Also, when that time comes and there has been no additional sign of illness, should I give a FW bath prior to moving to the display tank or skip it? <I would skip it.  This is the purpose of quarantine...fish looks good for three to four weeks, time to move.> Lastly, do you know any tricks to get blue tangs to eat their greens, <Might try an algae clip, worked for me once.> he eats everything but seaweed and macro/micro algae.  He loves every type of shrimp, flake, and plankton I offer to him.  Most of the foods I use are high in HUFA and Spirulina and sometimes I soak it in Selcon.  Will this mix of foods do, or do I need to continue to try the greens? <Sounds like a healthy diet but do continue trying the greens.  The greens are the freeze dried variety, correct?> Thanks, <You're welcome.  James (Salty Dog)> Bryan

Sick Paracanthurus  2/23/06 Hi, <Hi Doris! My name is Tim -- I will be answering your question today.> I have attached a pic of my hippo tang that I noticed today he had these scrapes on his belly. <Unfortunately we did not receive this image. Please do resend it.> He is still very active and eats like a horse. <Good signs.> My water parameters are fine (no nitrates, no NA, salinity is 1.024).  It seems to me that it looks like he has scraped himself along the live rock, I know that when the lights are out, he squeezes in between some LR.  I just want to make sure.  Should I give him a FW Dip. <These could just be scratches. Do keep an eye on this fish - if you notice him actually scratching himself, for example by flicking himself against rocks, then this may indicate a more serious condition. In any case, if an option then I would move this fish to your QT for observation and, if possible, arrange the rocks in your main tank to provide the tang with appropriately sized hiding places to retreat to.> I would appreciate any advice you could give. <Best of luck - keep me informed of developments please.> Thank you for your time and expertise, your website is very helpful.

HLLE or Something Else?  2/13/06      Your website is great!!!      Yesterday, I "inherited" a baby (1") regal tang (aka Pacific Blue, Blue Hippo). <Small...>   When I first got him, I noticed a white patch on either side of his head below each eye.   <Just stress markings> I gave him a freshwater dip for about 3.5 minutes and put him in quarantine.  Today, the white is spreading so that his face is nearly white as well as his hind end, while his middle, fins and tail are still normal color. <Likely still just stress...> It is not raised spots, rather it looks like someone has "bleached" him causing him to turn from blue to white.  Other than that, he is acting well, swimming around and eating (Emerald Entree soaked in Garlic Xtreme and dried seaweed with vitamin C, I'll be adding vitamins, but LFS is closed on Sunday).  There is no pitting, sores, scratches, holes or any other signs of illness.  He does tend to hide when I come near, but I'm pretty sure that's normal. <Yes>      Water tests showed pH = 8.3, ammonia = 0, nitrite = 0, nitrate = < 12.5, sg = 1.021, <Raise this to 1.025> temp = 79.      I took some pics of him this evening, but they came out really blurry, so, unfortunately, I can't send them.  I'll try again later.      I'm really hoping to save this little guy as he is one of the fish I really wanted when I got my aquarium, but they've been really hard to come by (LFS hasn't had one in months).  He'll be joining two baby (1") false percula clowns, a small (3") yellow tang, a 4" Ward's Sleeper (Tiger Watchmen's) Goby and 12 turbo snails in a 6ft., 125 gal tank.  It doesn't seem like a lot of fish now, but I know they'll grow.      Do you think this is HLLE? <No... not at this size...> I've searched and searched and that's the only thing I can find that comes close to his symptoms.  If so, what can I do for him?      Thanks for your help.  Your website and FAQ's have helped me tremendously, although I've been blessed with healthy fish so far. <Provide good water quality, an assortment of foods, some soaked in vitamin prep., and this fish should be fine. Very small Paracanthurus are often stressed, colored in this fashion. Yours will "color up" soon... w/o any "medication"/treatment. Bob Fenner>

Blue tang sick......please help   2/9/06 I purchased a blue tang from a very large and reputable  LFS about 2 weeks ago and since I bought him he just keeps getting worse! In my  almost 2 month old 150 gallon tank I have     *   Yellow moray ( 3  feet)     *   Zebra eel ( 4  feet)     *   Miniatus Grouper ( 5  inches)     *   Marine Betta ( 5  inches)     *   Maroon clown (3 inches)        *   Large bubble tip  anemone     *   Naso tang ( 6  inches)     *   Yellow tang ( 3  inches)     *   Blue hippo tang ( 5 inches. very  sick!)     *   15 large soft  corals I have VHOs with more than enough lighting (just below  requirement for frags) and 160 pounds of live rock. All my parameters are in  check although just yesterday I did get a nitrate spike (in safe levels however) <Numbers please>   but everything is fine now¦ anyway on to the sad part. For about 2 days he swam  around (the hippo) and shook while swimming occasionally swimming on his side  although he definitely did not do this in the LFS! Anyway after that he hid in  the rocks and pretty much stayed there since now¦.. about 2 weeks (no eating,  swimming, hardly any activity whatsoever) he dame up today leaning on my snail  on the glass not moving and I caught him with my net <Must be sick!> and made a protective  plastic sanctuary at the top of my tank with a cut laundry basket with a little  home from shade from the light and etc. Now that I see him he has transformed  from the beautiful fish I bought, into a fish with faded blue spots and his  yellow tail looks like a beat up feather duster and is off white from the bright yellow it used to be. There is also a cluster of tiny red spots oh his tail   which I have no idea what it is. He looks awful please help me I have read over 200 inputs with no real definitive answer and am blue in the face with  no progress. It would be a shame if he didn't make  it Thanks so much   <Very likely this new fish is reacting to a chemical "soup" situation your other fishes have become classically "adapted" to... their combined wastes, the soft corals... If you want to save this fish it needs to be moved to other quarters pronto... The overstocked situation in your 150... I'd stick to what you have. Bob Fenner>

Skinny Blue Hippo Tang  - 2/4/2006 Good Morning, <Yes> I hope that you can help us save our Hippo Tang. She seems to be eating a varied diet well (Nori soaked in Zoecon, Frozen Emerald Entree, Dainichi reef veggie mix and raw shrimp leftovers from the lobster), but she is getting thinner and thinner. <Not uncommon... will explain below> She has that pinched in look and now I can see ribs. From all the reading I have done on your site, I believe she has HLLE from the water quality problems we had (small dark pits around head area), but water has now been corrected for a month now.  This is also when we added the Nori/Zoecon to the diet. <Good> We are now doing 15-20% water changes weekly. The nitrates were off the charts before. The 125gal. tank is now at Nitrate 20, Nitrite 0 Ammonia 0, Ph 8.3, Alkalinity 300 range, Temp 80, Salinity 1.0235. Tank stuff: 125 gal with Fluval 404 activated carbon, Top Fin 60, Deutto100 power filter, a Prizm protein skimmer and an approx. guess for live rock is 50lbs and a 1" sand bed.  (Pardon me if I have given any information incorrectly, this is my husbands tank). Her behavior has now changed from swimming curiously around and following the other fish, to hanging out by the power head and resting on some live rock.  She still swims around some, and is always present for feedings. I have read about internal parasites but not being sure, <Ah! This I would actually treat for here. If the fish is eating, a simple soaking with Flagyl/Metronidazole> I did not want to medicate. We do have a 10 gal. QT tank but it has only been up for about 1 week.  The fish had ich 3-4 months ago and we treated (incorrectly in the main tank) and it went away.  We lost our yellow tang over a month ago which got me reading a lot on your website. I just can't find anything with exactly our situation. Tank mates are now (1) Royal Gramma (3) Bannerfish (1) small crab and (1) purple lobster (who all appear to be healthy).  I hope it is not too late to help her. <> Thank you. Marci <Could well be this thinness stems from the previous poor water quality you cite... and/or the trials of ich treatment (often kills off beneficial microbes in their food tract)... I would try the one-shot anti-protozoal treatment mentioned, and do pretty much what you are currently. Bob Fenner>

Possible Lymph on P. hepatus  01/01/2006 Hello, my name is Josh. <Hi Josh, I'm Adam.> I am having an issue like most with my Blue Tank. <Tang.> He has two fairly large (boils) on his body. <That doesn't sound good.> All else seems to be well...eating, swimming etc.   <That's still good be sure to keep feeding him a variety of nutritional foods.> This does not appear to be ich due to the size of the spot and number.  I have had him for a while now and all reef inhabitants are well.  Do you have and suggestions? <Hard to say without a pic, but an offhand guess: Lymphocystis possibly? Read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/lymphfaqs.htm .> Thank-you for anytime given. <No problem, anytime.> Josh <Adam J.> \

Nitrates and regal tang  12/17/05 Hey! <Hey, Hey>   Guys believe me I did a lot of reading before mailing you. <I believe you>I have a 140G tank and considering the decorative corals and sand and rocks it would come down to 120G of water. I checked my nitrates on my Tetra No3 and the color code matched between 50-100. 100 is the max reading on the rate card so that scared the sh*t out of me.  I had done a 10% water change on Sunday & checked No3 on Tuesday to get this reading. I had unfortunately not done a test before. My regal tang(2", 6 months old in my tank) all off a sudden started hiding and when on a hunger strike which made me do the test. I still wonder what's wrong with him as my other tank mates which include a fire clown, yellow tang, Purple Fridmani, Strawberry Goby, Blue devil; are doing very fine and are good at eating etc. My other water parameters are Ammonia 0, No2 0, pH 8.1 yes I am increasing it to 8.3 already. I have got the pH up from 7.8 to 8.1 in a span of 15days and will get it to 8.3 soon. I did another water change yesterday (around 15%) i.e. Thursday and still my No3 remains the same. <You need to control nutrients my friend.  Read here.  http://www.wetwebmedia.com/nutrientcontrol.htm> My filtration includes an EHEIM 2217, a UV after that and a Overhang Wet/Dry. The water flows from the 2217 to the UV and finally to the Wet/Dry and back in the tank. I changed my carbon Bag in the canister on Sunday itself. How do it get rid of the Nitrates? <Carbon should be replaced monthly.  Consider using a higher grade such as Chemi-Pure.  The filter floss needs to be changed on a weekly basis also.> Have the high nitrate levels caused the regal tang to go on a hunger strike? <Very possible as tangs do require pristine water quality and a high vitamin diet.> I haven't fed anyone for the last 48 hrs. Please help me out with the same. <Most fish will tolerate nitrate levels around 25ppm with no problems. At the level you are at would be questionable.  Keep in mind there is nothing you can buy and/or add to the tank that is going to make the nitrate go away overnight.  I'm also thinking a hang on wet dry isn't going to have the area you require for efficient biological filtration for a 140 gallon tank.  Do read the link and I'm sure you will see areas that you are failing in.  <You do not mention the use of a protein skimmer.  This alone helps immensely in controlling nutrients.  James (Salty Dog)> Thanks in advance <You're welcome>

Blue Tang... disease?  You Should Know What You've Purchased!  11/11/05 Hi there.  I have some damsels, 2 Nemos, and a blue tang.  I recently bought a dogface puffer. <Yikes... I hope you have a large system> About 1 month ago a yellow tang had died.  So I replaced it with the puffer. A new fish that I don't know the name was also bought with the puffer and it just died.  My main question is, Dory (blue tang) has white spots in the face.  They don't really look like ich.  She has had them for about 1 month. <Likely just normal markings> It almost looks as if her face skin was peeling of just like sun burn on humans. <Ahhh! Perhaps the beginnings of HLLE...> She is breathing really fast and the worst, she is rubbing against rocks on both cheeks (sides of face) right around the white color changes.  Any ideas on what it is.  Water its good, have been changing it and testing it every week. Thanks, Claudio <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/paracant.htm and the linked files above, particularly re Disease, Systems. Bob Fenner> <<Too bad Mr. Eisner has left Disney, these people should know what they've done.  Marina>>

Hippo Tang Health / Aquarium  11/7/05 Good Afternoon Guys... <...and there are some ladies here...> Love the website - over the years, I have gained a wealth of knowledge from your forums. <Ah good> Currently have a 90 Gallon Fish Only / Live Rock Tank with an additional 40 gallon sump area. Tank has approx 100 lbs of live rock and 60 lbs of crushed aragonite substrate. Tank has been stable for over 3 years now. Along with normal wet/dry filtration, I run a skimmer, a UV sterilizer and Purigen filter packs (that seem to control Nitrates amazingly). Water Parameters: Temp 80F, Ammonia 0 ppm, Nitrites 0 ppm, Nitrates <10ppm, pH 8.3, buffer capacity seems good.  At this time, the only fish in my tank is a beautiful Hippo Tang (approx 7"). I purchased the fish about 4 months ago, when it was about 4" and seems to have grown quickly. In the coming months, I plan on adding a couple of clown fish and a long nose butterfly... and maybe another tang (last, possibly a Sohal) <Mmm, this tank is actually too small... for such an ultimate bully> - but I'm fully aware of the problems overstocking can cause. This Hippo is so cool looking, I am actually considering leaving him as the only tank inhabitant. I know these guys can be temperamental and sometimes difficult to keep happy... this one seems like he's pretty happy and adding other fish might cause him some problems, I'm not sure. My water quality seems good, the water is crystal clear and the fish has the entire tank to himself. About 4-5 weeks ago, I noticed the fish rubbing up against the rocks and substrate. <Some such rubbing, glancing is normal> I checked for "white spots" (possibly Ich) and found nothing. The fish is quite fat, eats everything in sight and swims all over the tank very actively. Unlike most Blue Tangs, this guy is quite personable and doesn't hide when I go to feed... quite the opposite, he comes right up to where I put the food in the tank. The fish also grazes off seaweed on a clip and eats the algae off the rocks and glass. Also, in the past 2 weeks, every other day, I crush a little garlic and add it with the flake food... the tang absolutely loves the garlic and seems even more active and colorful, since I started adding the garlic. My questions are general, regarding the health of the fish and the aquatic environment. The Hippo continues to rub against the substrate, not constantly, but certainly as the lights dim at the end of the day... yet shows no other signs of ich or stress. With the water parameters testing well and the water looking good, I have tried to avoid water changes - since (in the past) that's the process that has caused this fish a little stress. I do add trace elements (Marine Trace) every week. Everything I read on the internet talks about fish rubbing up against rocks and substrate indicative of a parasitic disease (like Ich)... but should there not be some kind of physical symptoms?  <Would be if there "was a problem", yes> Also, in the last month (which coincides with this behavior) I've noticed very small amounts of bright green algae growing on the top of some of the live rocks. It's actually quite attractive, and the fish likes to "eat" from it - although it's a very fine covering on the rocks. Is this algae growth indicative of any problem in the water that I'm not testing for? <Mmm, nope> I don't want to disturb the environment for this Hippo, since he appears to be VERY happy, and I think changing anything might do more harm than good... but is there anything obvious that I should be doing / testing for, or am I concerning myself about nothing? <Same old water quality parameters, particularly pH...> Finally, if I am to add other fish - do the fish above seem OK, or should I add a cleaner shrimp... any ideas would be appreciated. <A cleaner shrimp would help. Careful selection, acclimation and quarantine of new livestock requisite> Thanks, hope I didn't take up too much of your time.  Jeff <Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Slightly deformed Regal/Hippo Blue Tang Mouth 11/4/05 Hi, As always, you guys are AWESOME.  I recently received a 4-5 inch Hippo Tang from a very good online supplier. The fish hid in the rocks for about 5 hours, after which I turned on the lights and within 30 minutes he began swimming freely. He has no problems with his body, coloring, or behavior. He pleasantly swims around the tank even with me standing/walking around the tank. One issue with him is his mouth. It looks like he sustained an injury when he was little and his mouth grew slightly deformed (should I worry since he has hit close to 5 inches in size?).  <Likely not "too deformed"...> The mouth permanently looks like he is whistling, not being able to open his mouth from one side to the other like a "grin". Any thoughts? <... may be genetic/developmental... or resultant from a trauma as you state> I have contacted the supplier and let them know of the issue. He has not eaten yet, <Oh! You've just received this animal... in this condition. First, not from an injury, second, not a good idea to purchase specimens of this species at this large size... Adapt poorly or not at all to captive conditions> but it is only day one and he's at least out in the open swimming and making friends. He's in a 90 gallon with a YT, 2 clowns, and a flame. Thanks, AP <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/paracant.htm and the linked files at top. Bob Fenner> 
Re: Slightly deformed Regal/Hippo Blue Tang Mouth 11/6/05
Bob, <Anu> Thanks for the reply. You are correct, I did follow your directions he is definitely smaller that I stated - I guess I am excited to have the fish and the other fish in the tank are smaller, making him look larger. <Heee!> So far he has not eaten anything and was added to my tank 2 days ago. I'll wait it out, how long is normal acclimation time to eating? I.e. when should I be worried? <A few days to a couple of weeks...> Anu

Hippo losing black on face?  Age, Good Husbandry Should Solve - 10/24/05 I have a hippo that I bought from a LFS that was emaciated, beat up by damsels, and had some serious fin rot. He is about the size of a half dollar right now, <Better to be collected/sold at a few inches in length> and although I have gotten his fins to regrow and fattened him up in a 6 week qt, a few months later a portion of his nose and the area around his mouth seems to be fading in color (see attached pic). <Nice photo... mainly shows "normal" growth, color of the area> It is hard to see because he never stops moving but it doesn't look like it is pitting, just losing color, and his lateral line looks fine. I feed him formula 2, Cyclop-Eeze, and prime reef (flakes, he ignores frozen even when it's soaked in garlic or VitaChem). He occasionally eats some Nori off a clip, but he usually picks at the microalgae on the rocks. I'm puzzled because he is very active and seems otherwise healthy. What can I do to fix this???  -Arik <Likely not a problem here... maintaining optimized water quality, providing vitamin-rich foods as you are doing are the best means of preserving color and vitality. Bob Fenner>

Re: Unbeatable Hepatus Tang and Crypt 10/12/05 Dear Crew, <Jeff> I wrote several weeks ago concerning my Hippo Tang and Crypt, and Adam wrote back with some suggestions which I have attempted to follow. The tang has now been in a QT for almost 3 months and I still see spots on it.  <... likely needs to be treated... not just quarantined... ahh, I see you've done this. Below> The odd thing is though, the spots never seem to disappear or increase. Is it possible I'm not dealing with Crypt at all? <Yes> Some of the spots appear to be like white pimples while others are white and smooth. There are no spots on the fins whatsoever, only on the body. Some sort of other irritant? Debris? <Possibly... there are other external parasites that look "spotty", other conditions that irritate neuromast (the pit organ/cells that are part of the lateralis system...> I don't see the tang flashing nor does it appear to be in any distress and it eats like crazy. Quick summary of what I've done up till now: Hypo for 4 weeks, Formalin baths, freshwater baths, copper treatment for 2 weeks with CopperSafe and now almost a week of copper with SeaCure (and using the appropriate test kit to monitor the level) and finally multiple aquarium swapping (as suggested by Adam). <I see...> At this point, do I dare move the Tang into the main? <I would> I'm worried the prolonged copper usage and other stresses of being in QT is going to kill this poor fish. As always, you all are amazing and many many Thanks! Jeff <I share your concern. I would pH-adjusted freshwater dip/bath this fish and place it in your main system. Bob Fenner>

Hippo Problem, Not enough info  9/23/05 Hello, <Hello Adam J with you.> Can you tell me if my Blue Hippo has a disease or just maybe skinned his head on the rocks? <What do you mean by skinned? Does it look like an abrasion, discoloration or something else'¦.? I'm sorry to say I can't tell you much from your description. A more detailed description would help and a picture would be best. Although I can say it is not uncommon for Hippos (Paracanthurus hepatus ) to scratch themselves when wedging in between rocks. But to reiterate form your description I am uncertain as to the diagnosis.> He was fine last night. He is eating well and swims normal. <A good sign.> I know if you catch a disease quick, you can normally beat it. <Only if you can I.D. it though.> So a fast response would be greatly appreciated. Thanks and God Bless! Curtis <Cheers, Adam J.> <<May be the beginning/s of HLLE... nutrient (avitaminoses) and/or water quality related. Please read re this neuromast degenerative condition, the species health on WWM. RMF>>
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