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FAQs on Cichlid Trauma  

Related Articles: Cichlid FishesFreshwater Fish Diseases, Freshwater DiseasesIch/White Spot Disease, Freshwater Medications

FAQs on Cichlid Disease:  Cichlid Disease 1, Cichlid Disease 2, Cichlid Disease 3, Cichlid Disease 4
FAQs on Cichlid Disease by Category: Diagnosis, Environmental, Nutritional, Social, Pathogenic, Parasitic, Treatments 

Related FAQs: African Cichlid Disease, Oscar Disease/Health, Aquarium MaintenanceFreshwater Medications, Freshwater Infectious Disease, Freshwater Fish ParasitesIch/White Spot Disease, Cichlids in General, Cichlid Systems, Cichlid Identification, Cichlid Behavior, Cichlid Compatibility, Cichlid Selection, Cichlid Feeding, Cichlid Reproduction, Dwarf South American Cichlids, African Cichlids, Angelfishes, Discus, Chromides, Neotropical CichlidsOscars, Flowerhorns


Cichlid Blister/Pimple   2/15/08 Hello. I have a cichlid tank and one of my cichlids seem to have gotten a "pimple" or blister on their fin. Do you know what disease this may be? The "pimple" is a pinkish reddish color. Also, it is only on one of the fins, the other one is completely fine. Do you have any idea what this may be? Thanks so much. <Likely a localized expression from a physical injury... getting poked by a fish spine of another fish for instance. No real treatment advised other than good care, nutrition and water quality. Bob Fenner>

Cichlid cut/wound???  2-05-08 Please help me. I have a Firemouth cichlid who has what looks like cuts, or wounds near his dorsal fins. It is right below his dorsal fins and not exactly on his dorsal fins. The "cuts" are a pink/whitish color. He still is very active and eats fine and has no discolorations. What is this "cut". I am not sure if it is fin/tail rot. His fins and tail do not seem ripped and seems perfectly fine. Is it normal for him to have "cuts" below his dorsal fins? Thanks for your help. <Yes, this sounds exactly like Finrot. Treat at once with a medication such as a Maracyn or eSHa 2000. Finrot doesn't cause fish to lose their appetite until it infects the body cavity, at which point the fish will likely die regardless of treatment. So treat now! Do also try an establish the cause: Finrot almost never comes out of nowhere, but is usually associated with poor water quality and/or physical damage. Firemouths are gentle (by cichlid standards, anyway) and easily damaged by more aggressive species like Convicts and Red Devils, so mixing these species isn't a good idea and often ends with the poor Firemouth getting hammered. As for water quality, at the very least do a nitrite test just to see what the situation is on that front, even if everything looks fine. Cheers, Neale.>

Cichlid Caught In A Decoration I have a Cichlid that was stuck in one of my aquarium decorations  for about 2 days, I finally had to break the boat to get him out, he has scrapes  on top his head and some red areas on his body.  I put him back and he just  sank to the bottom, I swished him around in the water and it revived him but he doesn't look good.  Can anyone recommend anything that I can do?  I  don't have a hospital tank set up and the aquarium store is closed for me to get  a divider to keep him away from the other fish.  Can you give me an idea  about how I can keep him separate from the other fish for now? Thanks, Bobbi < Place him in a large dip net and place the net so it gets some water flow from the filters or airstones. Add a tablespoon of rock salt per 5 gallons of water and add some MelaFix to prevent bacterial and fungal infections.-Chuck>

Damaged Parrot Cichlid  - 04/19/2006 I have 3 medium sized parrots and 5 silver dollars in a 26 gallon tank.  My smallest parrot managed to wedge himself into a hole in a   rock, and it took some effort to work him back out - his face and side are fairly scraped up, and he had to be handled a bit more than   I'm comfortable with.  Now he can't seem to get upright, and is stuck upside down.  The other two parrots keep pushing him toward the top   of the tank, but he ends up back at the bottom, upside down.  He is working his gills, fins and tail, but that doesn't seem to be doing   much.  I'm in the middle of treating the tank for slime - using Furazone-light - but I don't think that would affect much.  I did a   30% water change 2 days ago.  The tank is a bit acidic at 6.0, nitrites are 0, nitrates are less than 20 ppm, and ammonia is less   than 0.25 ppm, and I keep the temp at 82 degrees.  I'm afraid I may have damaged his swim bladder while rescuing him.  I'm not sure what   I should do at this point - any ideas? Deb Jones <Your fish could have been damaged during the initial trauma or has suffered a secondary bacterial infection. Not much we can do with the initial trauma. Surface wounds can be treated quickly with MelaFix. If any secondary bacterial infections or fungus appear then you have already treated with Nitrofurazone. Internal bacterial infection can be treated with Metronidazole. Do a 50% water change, clean the filter and vacuum the gravel. Treat as directed on the package.-Chuck>

Pike Cichlid Beat Up And Hiding Hello, I have a 3 inch golden pike which has a  problem.  He was originally in a 55 gallon tank along with a 5  inch tiger Oscar, a 3 inch jack Dempsey, 2 inch Pleco, and a 2 inch  catfish.   The 55 gallon tank is temporary and eventually they  will be in a 90 gallon tank.  Yesterday I noticed that my pike had  some red spots on his side which I could tell were not part of his  colorization.  I spoke to a guy at the LFS who knows his stuff,  and he told me it is probably hemorrhaging, caused by the other fish who  are picking on him.  Then today I noticed that he would not come  out of his cave and when he did he got viciously attacked by the Oscar  and Dempsey.  I took him out of the tank and placed him a 10  gallon tank which I had bought recently as a quarantine tank.   However the tank has gotten a chance to cycle and has only been running  for half a day.  I placed the pike in there because I though he  wouldn't make in the 55 tank another day.  He has been in the 10  gallon for about four hours and hasn't moved at all, he's still  breathing but I don't know what to do.  Any advice that you could  lend me on this situation would be greatly appreciated.  Thank you. Jim <Pikes really don't do too well with other aggressive cichlids. The pike cichlids mouth is for catching smaller fish. It doesn't do too well against other cichlids that may bite it and break it. Your pike is pretty tough and will probably recover from the attacks, but the tougher question is where to put it. The other fish get big but your pike will not be able to tolerate the more aggressive cichlids. Your pike will get about 18 inches when full grown s will need at least a 55 gallon tank all on his own.-Chuck>
Pike Beat Up II    
Thanks for your quick response.  However since I sent my email to  you the Pike while in the 10 gallon still hasn't moved, eaten and is  breathing  heavy and looks really stressed.  He still has the  red marking on his side. I even put so live food in the tank with him  and he didn't even acknowledge it.  When I took him out of the  other tank  (55 gl) I was treating it with quick cure for protozoan  parasites which some of the fish had especially the Oscar.  Can  the parasite from the 55 gallon be the reason for his heavy breathing  and stressed out condition.  I put PimaFix in the 10 gallon to  help him, but nothing.  Is there any medication that I should give  him that would help him recover.  Thank you in advance for your  help. Jim < Sounds like you pike really got beat up. The Nitrofuranace will help with both bacterial and fungal infections. If you pike is listless and non-responsive you could try adding a teaspoon of rock salt per 5 gallons, but after that there is not much you can do except keep the water clean and warm (80+F).-Chuck>

Half Black Jewel Cichlid  9/26/05 My jewel cichlid has turned black on the front half of the body.  Do you know what could be causing this.  I do a water change about every two weeks as was recommended by the fish store.   I did have an algae problem growing on the sides of the tank but got rid of that.   I don't have a test kit for the water but my other cichlids seem to be fine.  Thanks STELLA < I have seen this a few times and it always turns out to be am attack of the fishes nervous system. sometimes it is a disease and sometimes it is trauma like an injury. I have seen the back half being black but never the front half. Isolate him in a hospital tank and treat with Nitrofurazone in case it is bacterial related. Jewel fish are pretty durable fish and hopefully he will bounce back.-Chuck> <<Possibly also an iodine deficiency....  Look for the book by Dieter Untergasser, "Handbook of Fish Diseases" (or something similar to that....) - there is a great deal of information there on this condition, including treatment options.  -Sabrina>>

Convict Cichlid With Strange Growth 7/20/05 I have a convict cichlid (relatively young, I'm sure) who has (seemingly overnight) developed a white round 3-dimensional growth at the base of his fin (at the joint if you will). The cichlid is only about 2 1/2 inches long and the growth is about 1/8 of an inch (perhaps a smidgeon less). Please let me know if you can figure anything out. The only thing I've come up with is maybe a tumor of some sort, but I really don't know. Thanks in advance.--Rachael <Could be fungus from a wound. Wipe the area down with a cotton swab. Put a little iodine on it and treat the water with Nitrofuranace for wound control.-Chuck>

Big Fish's Pop-eye Hi! I have an older Jack Dempsey cichlid, namely Big Fish, who has pop eye. I've read through the FAQs but didn't find quite what I was looking for. Big Fish is in a 55 gallon tank along with a female Jack Dempsey and a Plecostomus. How can I treat his condition without harming the others? He has had this eye for almost a year and it seems to be growing again. I've also attached a photo. Is he in pain, and is there anything I can do? Thank you, Maddie < Do a 30% water change and service the filter. Vacuum the gravel too while you are doing the water change. Then treat the tank with Metronidazole. This medication is very effective against anaerobic bacteria that are growing behind the back of your fish's eye. Big fish are very messy so it is important to keep the water clean and the nitrates down below 25 ppm.-Chuck> 


Eartheater cichlid My Eartheater cichlid has developed a cloudy patch over only one eye. I can't tell if the eye is injured or if it is some type of disease. I've used Aquari-Sol the last couple of days to see if that would help, but it just has gotten worse. I was going to try some aquarium salt, but I didn't want to add the salt if it was not going to help. Thanks for your help. < Eartheaters sometimes damage their eyes while digging through the sand. Do a 30% water change and service the filter. Treat the tank with erythromycin and It should be better in a day or two.-Chuck>

Eye damage I looked through most of the questions about swollen eyes and couldn't find one that described this. I am sorry if this is a repeat. I haven't been able to find anything. <Well, we'll sure try to help out....  Sabrina here on this one> We recently "saved" a 6" Red Devil from a pet store.  This fish was obviously returned to the pet store and is very timid and beat up.   <Hopefully he'll recover so he can live up to his name....> Currently we have him in a 20 gal quarantine. <Excellent!> The problem is, he had a white spot on the outer membrane of his eye. It looked very much like ich. The eye and eye socket do not appear swollen. Just the membrane. I'm sure I'm not explaining this correctly, but I am not sure of the actual names. <I *think* I get what you're saying.> The swelling receded for a couple of days, but tonight it came back with a vengeance. It looks like it could burst.  Any ideas? <Well Lisa, my best guess is that the eye was injured, somehow; perhaps the white spot was a parasite like ich or something (so keep a watch for more!) and caused damage, or perhaps it was just damaged tissue from the injury.  Make sure there are no sharp things in the QT for him to scratch against (this includes plastic plants); plain terra cotta flowerpots or PVC pipes will provide cover for him without giving him something to cause further damage to his undoubtedly uncomfortable eye (which he probably wants to scratch).  I'd recommend treating with a medicated food (perhaps with tetracycline) to prevent bacterial infection as the eye (hopefully) heals; I recommend using medicated food mostly because it will be easy to discontinue use if you end up having to treat for ich....  I'm not entirely certain that the antibiotic will help to fix his eye problem, but hopefully, it will help.  Wishing your little devil a swift recovery,  -Sabrina> Thanks Lisa
Eye Damage Two
Thanks Sabrina <Sure thing.> I should of let you know that we had already tried treating him for ich as he showed the signs. He had discoloration from it and I thought that was what the spot might be. I will try some medicated food and some smoother tank items to keep him from scratching. Thanks sooooo much. <You bet.  Hope everything goes well.  -Sabrina> Lisa

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