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FAQs about the Queen Angel Health/Disease

Related Articles: Queen Angels, Holacanthus Angels

Related FAQs: Queen Angels 1, Queen Angels 2, Queen Angel Identification, Queen Angel Behavior, Queen Angel Compatibility, Queen Angel Selection, Queen Angel Systems, Queen Angel Feeding, Queen Angel Reproduction, & Marine Angelfishes In General, Angelfish ID, Selection, Behavior, Compatibility, Systems, Health, Feeding, Disease,   

Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
Diversity, Selection & Care
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by Robert (Bob) Fenner

Queen Angel/ORP      11/4/17
Hi Bob and Crew,
<Hey Eric>
I have a somewhat tangled question. I recently had a mystery queen angel death in my 400g DT. The queen had spent about 6 weeks in a 55g QT tank and was prophylactically treated with Chloroquine Phosphate and PraziPro.
The fish was eating well, had good colors, and seemed to engage with me when I would approach the tank. The queen got bullied for a few days by my powder blue tang but everything calmed down. About a month later I noticed the queen would not leave her favored nook and had stopped eating.
Breathing didn't seem abnormal. Colors didn't look as brilliant as they previously had either. I knew things were bleak so in a last ditch effort I dosed the DT with PraziPro (hoping it was something that would magically treated by one of the only reef safe meds out there). Also note there was no way I was going to be able to catch him in my DT - removing and treating in a QT would clearly have been preferred.
I don't expect you to diagnose what occurred from my description above.
But the mystery death had me wondering, so I decided to refer to your (Bob's) book "Angelfishes for Marine Aquariums: Diversity, Selection & Care". One thing that stood out to me as something I have never considered
before is ORP. In my 10ish years in the marine hobby I have never monitored or thought about ORP. In fact it seems like it has kind of become less popular to monitor and control over the last 10 years.
<A shame this is so. ORP IS the measure of a system's capacity to support life. ALL public aquaria, commercial aquaculture facilities utilize ozone, measure ORP/RedOx>
So I was somewhat surprised to see the comment "The very best measure of overall water suitability, ORP (RedOx) should be 330-380 mv/cm." I have no detectible NO3 or PO4,
<Mmm; N, P, K are absolutely necessary (in some detectable concentration) for chemo-photosynthetic life. Zero, zip, nada are NOT healthy>
and pH stays pretty consistently around 8.1-8.3 so I had never really considered a water quality issue. Note I also periodically have other parameters checked via Triton labs so I don't suspect there's anything like a magnet which broke a seal and is poisoning the tank. Do you believe ORP is worth monitoring in a basic system which employs a refugium and skimmer for filtration with no fancy supplementation equipment (no Ca Rx, Kalk Rx, two part dosing, etc)?
<ORP is an extremely useful "window" to looking at overall system viability. ALL folks with much money or emotional investment in their systems should measure>
Is it possible that this metric could be at a level that is hazardous to fish health while all of the other common parameters appear to be in good shape?
<Mmm; reading, re-reading the sentence above: Not likely, but possible>
Sorry, that turned out to be longer winded than I had intended!
<A bit more reading on ORP, ozone use is what I advise; but, the one fish may have died for anomalous (thus far) reasons. Do you still have the body of the Queen? I'd open it and at least check stomach contents, the kidneys and liver (grossly); or have someone who knows more help you with this dissection. Bob Fenner>

Angelfish Anomaly?        1/23/14
Hi WWM crew, hope it's not as cold where you are as it is here right now!
<Upper 70's F. here in San Diego where I am; thankfully>
I am writing about a Queen Angel I've had for maybe 10 months now. She's 6-7" long in a 245g tank with a 100g sump. The tank is Fowlr and some soft "corals" like mushrooms and such. The water parameters are pretty standard (as per the CMA book) sg 1.025, temp ~77. The tank has been set up for years.
Anyway I noticed a month or so back that she has what look like indentations or holes under both eyes.
<Ahh... HLLE>
I am not sure if they've been there all along, developed, worsened from being unnoticeable, or what. Now that I've noticed, I have become (maybe) paranoid about them. My question is, are these marks common/natural on this fish or is it a problem? Someone suggested HLLE but it doesn't look like my albeit limited familiarity with that disorder. The marks are nearly symmetrical on both sides (3 marks per side, in the same place and similar size and shape on each side).
<Ah yes: Neuromast destruction... various "causes"... mainly water quality/nutrition (marines drink their env.)... Curable, including scarring if it's not too deep>
 Seems to rule out any attacks by tankmates... None of my other fish have any issues either.
If you can imagine this: it looks like when velvet peels off of a pillow or something leaving a slight divot. Hopefully this awful drawing helps :)
Thanks guys...You would make a mint as fish veterinarians you know!
<Too long and determinate hours. Read here:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Re: Angelfish Anomaly? Queen, HLLE       1/26/14
That diagnosis was my fear. I will try to improve water quality and continue feeding Nori and some angel food diet. Thanks for the advice, I will write back in a month or so with an update!
<I thank you. Do read where you were referred... soaking foods in vitamin and HUFA mixes is an easy thing to do that generates discernible improvement. BobF>

Queen Angel question, hlth. quarantine      5/10/13
Hey crew! I have had a 5.5 inch Queen Angel in quarantine for the past 3 weeks. I have been watching this growth appear on the base of the tail for the past 2 weeks. It is a big raised white bump. It looks almost like the head of a Q-tip. I figured it was lymphocytes and that it would go away in a month or so.
<Mmm, no; more likely to "progress" given the stress here>
Now today it's fins have a couple white patches on them. The fish is also "twitching" and shaking a lot. The fish is eating great. I'm feeding brine shrimp, Nori, and NL Spectrum pellets. I soak all foods in Selcon. Is this something that I should be medicating for?
<Nope. I'd move this fish, perhaps add a/some purposeful cleaner organisms to the main/display. Bob Fenner>
Re: Queen Angel question      5/11/13

So I should move the fish to the display?
<Yes I would>
 If it is bacterial of fungal, will it infect the other inhabitants?
<Worth the small risk IMEstimation>
 A cleaner probably wouldn't be a great idea for my display. I have a 4" Picasso Trigger and I'm afraid he would eat any cleaner shrimp/gobies that I place in there.
<Generally leave alone cleaner gobies... but I'd try another fish cleaner species/group. See WWM re>
Any idea why he is twitching and shaking so much?
<Could be a few things, but likely signaling... behavioral/communication... listen carefully and you may also hear this fish grunting... "Get out of my way" basically... Move it. B>
Re: Queen Angel question      5/11/13
Ok thanks Bob. I will get her acclimated and move her over. I'll keep you updated if these cloudy spots progress.
<Ah, thank you. BobF>
Re: Queen Angel question     5/13/13

Hi Bob. I acclimated the Queen Angel and added her to my display tank. As of this evening, her fins are more cloudy. My Fridmani Pseudochromis is also showing a white cloudy patch on his fins and under his eye. My LFS has instructed me to use Melafix and Pimafix.
<Dump these people. Find a new source/store>

 But I have read your thoughts on these so called "meds" and told them that I wasn't giving into that gimmick. The next thing they suggested was to use Maracyn Oxy because it is a non-antibiotic and will not hurt my biological filter.
They also said Maracyn Plus will do the same because it only targets "the bad bacteria".
 I smell BS here. I believe I'm dealing with a fungus  seeing as there is no skin or fin erosion. Just small fuzzy growths on the body and fins. Is this something that the fish will kick itself given time, good husbandry, and nutritional foods? Or should I be looking into some kind of medication?
I have not medicated yet.
<I would at most seek to boost your animals' immune systems... by lacing foods w/ HUFAs, Vitamins.>
<Welcome. B>
Re: Queen Angel question     5/13/13

I use Selcon every time I feed. Do you think this will be sufficient enough
to rid the problem?
<Likely so; along w/ optimized, stable conditions>
Shea Carey
Re: Queen Angel question     5/13/13

Great. Thanks for your time Bob. Your help is greatly appreciated.
<Ah, welcome>

Queen Angel mouth disorder      8/30/12
Hello Mr. Bob
How is your summer?? I hope you had great time.
<Off and on>
Need your help on a matter.
A customer have a problem with a Hol. Ciliaris at Adult-Medium Size about 13 cm. His mouth is always open and it can not move. Eats Normally but the color has faded out.
What would that be?? Bacteria problem??
<More likely either a physical trauma (injury) or nutritional deficiency syndrome... For the first, just waiting, hoping... for the second,
improvement in diet, addition of vitamins and HUFAs to the water. Bob Fenner>
Best regards
Re: Help Needed!!     8/30/12

Thank you for your reply Mr. Bob.
It is more than 2 months that this problem continues so it should be nutritional problem so I will suggest him to improve his nutrition.
Best regards
<And you. BobF>

Help with bloated stomach queen.   10/5/11
Hi crew of WWM,
I had encounter problem with my queen Holacanthus ciliaris. It had developed swollen tummy. The rest of my angelfishes are all well. I fed my queen with Mysis shrimp, white clams soak with parziqentel, vitamin and garlic guard.
<Mmm, not a good diet... Please read here re:
I had tried using Seachem Kanaplex, Erythromycinin a separate tank, but it has been a week but still not subside. Currently, I am trying on Waterlife Octozin, is there any recommendation of other more effective medication?
<W/o knowing the actual cause/s? No>
I do 100% water change daily. Fyi, I can only obtain Anti biotic medication like,API Erythromycin, API Tetracycline, Seachem Neomycin and Kanaplex. Please advice. Thanks
Kellvin Lim
<I'd be changing the diet... Am a huge fan of NLS product... Read here:
Bob Fenner>

Queen Angel w/ Cloudy Eyes   4/15/11
Hello and thank you for your website to seek out all of this knowledge! I have a Queen Angel in my 175 gallon tank and purchased approximately 6 weeks ago. Until recently, she has been one of the more lively members in the tank, but recently in the past few days she has started to refuse food and her eyes appear very cloudy.
<I see this>
During the day, she burrowed in the dark behind some rocks, but tonight she has been swimming back and forth a bit recklessly. By reckless, she has bumped into several other tank mates, including the Volitans Lionfish on multiple occasions.
<Very bad>
Additionally, her colors do appear as vibrant as normal. All levels in the tank are within range and we just did a 30% water change two weeks ago.
In addition to the Queen Angel, we also have the aforementioned Lionfish, a blonde Naso, yellow tang, porcupine puffer, stars and stripes puffer, and a maroon clown. All other tankmates seem to be acting normal and are eating well.
<Mmm, what re water quality? At least nitrate concentration as an indication of metabolite accumulation>
The Queen Angel is approximately 8 inches in length and sized similar to tank mates. Please advise on any action you would recommend. Thank you very much for your assistance!
<... Please read here: http://wetwebmedia.com/Popeyefaq2.htm
and the linked files above. We need more info., input re your system, foods/feeding/supplementing, but all is gone over and over here. Bob Fenner>


Queen Angel - High Nitrates - 10/24/09
<G and K>
We have a beautiful Queen Angel that has been in the tank for about 2 years. We were lax in making water changes and ended up with very high nitrate levels. All of a sudden, our angel was hiding in the bottom of the tank in the corner and stopped eating. That's how we found out about the high nitrates. We have since started performing water changes and the angel is starting to swim around the tank. The weird thing is that her mouth seems to be locked open.
The angel is starting to try to move it, but it's not great. Can very high nitrate levels do this to the angel?
<Yes... not just the NO3, but what actually lead to its concentration>
I thought that nitrates usually don't hurt fish. The angel is also being a little twitchy with the eyes and the swimming. Could this be something other than the nitrates?
<Is co... related. Doing what you can/will do to rectify the Nitrate should solve the Angel's health>
We look forward to your reply.
Greg and Kirsten
<Bob Fenner> 
Re: Queen Angel - High Nitrates - 10/25/09

Thank you Bob for your quick response. We have another question. Our tank
is a 76 gallon reef tank
<Holacanthus ciliaris needs more room than this>
and we have been doing a 15 gallon water change every 2-3 days for the last two weeks without much improvement.
<... this won't "do it">
We use RO water and have tested the water with the reef crystals and have a 0 reading for nitrates. Shouldn't we have seen a better result by now? Thanks for your help.
Greg and Kirsten
<Sorry I didn't refer you before. Please read:
and the linked files above. Bob Fenner>

Queen <sic> Angle, Possible Gill Problems   8/3/08 Dear Mr. Fenner, I recently purchased a Queen Anglefish on 7-29-08. She has been in Q-Tine for the past five days, ( today will be her 6th treatment 8-3-08) and I have been treating with the therapeutic remedy "Lifeguard" by Instant Ocean. I treat all my livestock with this remedy before they reach the display tank and have had great luck, but the queen seems to be resisting. There are no external signs of parasites. She is active curious and eating a healthy diet so far. My concern is with her gills. She breaths slightly faster with her right gill than her left, <... not uncommon> swims with her mouth open, and I have observed her trying to glance with her head when I approach and observe her gills, but she does not "glance" regularly. I know these fish are territorial and am not sure if that has anything to do with the glancing and the use of the gill barb on her gill plates. But her gills concern me. I was planning on a freshwater dip followed by 14 day copper exposure because I know these fish are regularly imported with protozoa/flukes. <Yes...> However, I have no experience with dips and have heard horror stories about copper and need professional advice before proceeding with treatment. I do have SeaCure copper and a test kit at hand. I do run UV on my display system but only as a precaution and refuse to rely on it. I really need professional advice. I truly enjoyed your book and it has become somewhat of a BIBLE for me. Thank you for your time, and any advice at all would be exceptional... thanx again, Jesse <I would not expose this fish to copper... if there is some simple protozoan issue here, the AS product should have addressed it/this. I do suspect your second suggested cause, Flukes/Trematodes... and would treat them as proscribed here: http://wetwebmedia.com/fshwrmdisflukef.htm Likely with Prazi/quantel. Bob Fenner>
Queen Angle, Proceeded with Formalin Dip   8/6/08 Dear Mr. Fenner, I wrote to you on 8/3/08 concerning my queen angle and her pesky habit of swimming with her mouth open. <Yes, I recall> I am aware that you hear this all the time, so I thank you for getting back to me, its extremely appreciated! I followed through with a fresh water Formalin dip ( I followed the recipe in your book "Conscientious Marine Aquarist) The dip lasted 7 minutes. She was swimming around fine but gasping periodically at the surface so after 7 min. I removed her. After the dip I noticed specs on the bottom of the "dip bucket"...? <Mmm, likely some discarded parasites... could be Trematodes/flukes> However now she is back in Q-Tine and her mouth is still open...??? <Mmm, yes... likely having a hard time "breathing", actually respiring> I am puzzled. She is eating, curious, and a ready swimmer <Good> but she keeps her mouth open... I am totally lost here. I cant tell what "labored breathing" is. <Slow, deep, hard/deliberate> Is it completely abnormal for her to keep her mouth open? <Mmm, no> Every picture I look at, even in your book, All the pictures of Large angles have their mouths open? I am completely lost here and really need some feedback, because I have never lost a marine fish and I really don't want to start. She is far to pretty to be lost. I'm sure you are extremely busy and again I thank you for your time, and look forward to your reply Jesse <I urge patience here... in a few weeks time, the breathing should be easier... Bob Fenner>

Re: Queen Angle, thanks for your reply  8/7/08 Dear Mr. Fenner, I just wanted to thank you for your time and helping me with my angle. It has been about 2 days since my last e-mail to you, and her mouth has almost completely closed when she swims and she seems to be improving by the day. <Ah, good> Thank you for your advice, and for publishing the "Conscientious Marine Aquarist" If it weren't for both I would probably be completely lost. Its hard to come by people who know their stuff or take the time to learn. Thanks again... Jesse <Thank you for this update Jesse. Life to you and your fishes. Bob Fenner>

Queen Angels I am very interested in obtaining a Queen Angel for my 90 gal fish only aquarium that has been running 4 1/2 months. I use a trickle filter set up with bio wheel and 10 gal sump, a Pro. skimmer and a More Zone 30 Ozonizer. I  have 1 Flame Angel 3 inches, Three Spot Angel 4 inches, and 2 Golden Head Sleepers 2 1/2 inches approx., 2 cleaner shrimp & 30-40 lbs of live rock.  First of all, would I be overloading my tank by adding a 3-4 inch Queen Angel  (I'm thinking long term)?  <I think the Queen would be a poor choice, not so much from a crowding standpoint, but behaviorally... with the other two angels... The Queen would get big... much bigger than the others in months... and bully them relentlessly> Secondly, I have noticed in 3 different local shops in Torrance, Ca that all of the Queen Angels that have been coming in  have been coming down with what looks like lymphocytes. The fish are all well colored, active and alert. Is this a trend with imported Queens that is currently common? <Yes, I think so too> One of the store owners, who I deem very reputable, says that he has noticed a decline in the quality of the Queens over the last year. In fact, he says that he is having more luck with Emperor Angels. Is this true and am I rushing things by looking to add this fish? Any help would be greatly appreciated. >> <You're not rushing yet... I would look for other non-angel livestock for your 90, Bob Fenner>

Queen angel update/HLLE cure/Caulerpa Culture dear bob, back in November I e-mailed you about the HLLE problem I was having with my queen angel. you were kind enough to respond right away with some suggestions that I add a macro algae culture and freshen the live rock. <yes, I recall> well since that post I wanted to let you know that my angel has improved dramatically! the lesions that once ravaged here face, eyes, and lateral line are now limited to her "cheek" area. it seems that she has a ravenous taste for the Caulerpa and I provide it to her 3 times a week. thank you so much for your suggestions. <Ah, great to hear of your success> the fresh algae is costing me close to $10.00 a week in addition to all the other frozen goodies, fish eat better than I do! As such I've tried numerous ways to grow it myself but with no luck. several times I tried placing a fresh harvest in a floating acrylic breeder in the display tank but the algae deteriorated in 4 days. my 75 gallon tank is lit with 2 Coralife 10,000k fluor. and 2 actinic lights. I have also tried cultivating the algae in my 100 g reef system equipped with power compact lighting. however, a $25.00 "bush" attached to a piece of live rock turned my tank green and then died in as many days. now as a last ditch effort I have placed some freshly harvested cup, blade, and grape specimens in a 20 g undergravel filter set up. 12 hour light with Coralife reef sun and a generic incandescent plant bulb. there are 3 small fish in the tank to fertilize - so far it seems that the algae is also dying in this tank too. what could be wrong? <A few things... I would go back to/with the compact fluorescent lighting, use just some live rock for attachment, and boost both alkalinity and biomineral content (mainly calcium)... keep these above 4 meq/l and 400ppm respectively> I am seriously considering installing an ecosystem refugium from Leng Sy's website however if I'm unable to grow the algae what is the point? your thoughts? Gisela <The miracle mud systems are also very good/worthwhile. Bob Fenner, who would also look around, ask your local marine hobby club, perhaps the stores if they know someone who has the opposite problem... that is, too much Caulerpa... not uncommon.>

Sick Queen Angel Bob, I'm about to lose a really beautiful young Queen Angel (my 3 year daughter calls her "Nicca") to some kind of parasite. Her eyes are clouding over and she has been scratching herself in the tank. I went and bought your book (Extraordinary, by the way.), but I am new to this responsibility and have only one 55 gal tank and no quarantine set up. I tried freshwater dipping for 10 minutes as recommended by the shop I frequent and parasites leap off except for the eyes and now one fin seems in trouble. She only gotten more lethargic. <How long have you had this fish?... What other livestock is in with it (good clues here) that is doing well, okay?> what do you recommend I do? <Please QUICKLY read over the parts of our website: www.WetWebMedia.com on "Marine Parasitic Disease" , the FAQs and treatment sections... I would lower the spg and even move this specimen if you have the facility to do so... Act now!> I appreciate your ear. Michael O'Neill < Be chatting... pls send all corr. to By Bob Fenner. Bob Fenner>
Re: Sick Queen Angel
Bob,  Thanks so much for your response. I've had this fish for a little less than 3 weeks. Other specimens in the tank from oldest to youngest are one med coral angel, one purple tang (red sea), one bicolor angel, one medium copperband, one small maroon clown, and the small queen we are treating.  However. I noticed last night that the copperband is started to scratch on the rock. I have a good bit of live rock in the tank as well. The coral, tang, clown, and bicolor all seem to be doing well.  I've read over the article as you suggested and assume that I'm dealing with Amyloodinium ocellatum, though why are the eyes clouding over. Because I'm limited to my one tank, I think I have to try a copper dip ( I think you call  it Methylene blue in your book).  <Sounds like Velvet, yes... and a real need to move quickly, treat with environmental manipulation, vitamin prep. and cleaners... ahead/in place of copper (which will kill much of your live rock... while it is absorbing the copper...)> The Queen Angel is doing better today, has gotten more active, and is eating some. She still has the parasite in her eye, but I'm encouraged.  Again, thanks  Michael  <Please do re-read the "treatments" sections of the WetWebMedia.com site over and initiate the above mentioned protocol. Bob Fenner>

A 6 year old queen angel . Hi Mr. Fenner <Hello> my name is Andrew Davies I live in s Wales U.K. . a fellow marine fish keeper , asked me to e-mail you concerning his queen angel , his system is run on a wet dry trickle tower system +a 300 gallon fluidized bed the system has been up and running for about 6yrs in all that time . the queen angel has been with him he, purchased the queen when she was small has moved her twice ,when he was upgrading his system and the queen has been very well indeed but for some unknown reason last week he did a 20gallon water change as he has always done , but for some unknown reason , she has stopped feeding , and is not as active as she normally after many hours of watching her not feeding , we where wondering if you could enlighten us  to our problem, would be very grateful to hear your views on this matter. I look forward to your reply . yours faithfully MR. ANDREW DAVIES + MR. ANTHONY GEORGE <A good record here of husbandry... could be that "something" was out of the ordinary with the source water that day (this happens quite often in the States... for instance, the municipality "pulses" chloramine (sanitizer) at several times a regular concentration at times). I would not panic at this juncture, but do try supplementing the food and water with an aqueous vitamin/HUFA product and be patient. Do also please read over the following: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/water4maruse.htm particularly developing a routine of pre-mixing and storing new seawater ahead of use.  Cheers, Bob Fenner>
6year old queen angel
to who it may concern, I have a 150 gal marine fish only system which has been running for about 6 yrs. up until about a week everything was fine but after carrying out a 20 gal. water change which I do every 3 weeks my 6 yr old queen angel has stopped feeding and become lethargic. her breathing has also slightly increased. I use r/o water by the way. I haven't added any fish for a long time and all my fish get on well. all the parameters of the new water were identical to the tank. I filter the system with a trickle filter/ sump tank, fluidized bed, U.V and heavy protein skimming. am I doing too many water changes even though the experts say to do so?  <Ah, a bit more, different information. Your reverse osmosis device should be taking care of problems with your source water... do check the carbon contactor (perhaps with a chlorine test kit and a sample of the produced water) to see if it has become exhausted... and renew (British for "replace" for U.S. readers)> what could possibly have disrupted the fish or the balance of the filter system? I don't think its just a coincidence. thank you, George <Something definitely did... I would still pre-make, aerate newly made water. The volume, percentage changed out is fine. Bob Fenner>
Re: a 6 year old queen angel .
hi Robert Andrew here with reference to your e-mail Anthony and myself share the same r/o unit and I have not had any problems with my tank, there are a couple of large fish in the tank , with the queen do you think she needs more space . <Yes... likely something in the range of about twice (let's say 300 gallons) of what you have this fish in now. Bob Fenner> thank you for your reply a Davies
Re: a 6 year old queen angel .
hi Robert Andrew here again the queen is not in 300 gallons she is in 150 gallons  <Yes, I understood that from your previous e-mails, pls re-read my last> I have the 300 gallons in my system and I have a large grey angel in my tank with a half-moon angel , .Robert can you tell me which off the angels is the most difficult to keep +why also can you tell me what are the chances of ME, keeping Moorish idols in my tank please .. <Please review the articles on Pomacanthids and the many FAQs files associated with them on our root web: starting here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/marine/fishes/angels/index.htm> thanks for you advice on the r/o unit we shall be changing the 3filters in the unit ASAP. <Real good. Be chatting, Bob Fenner> thanks again Robert Andrew

Re: Queen Angelfish Anthony, Here is what I have been able to discern from the time that I wrote you yesterday. The problem with the Queen Angel wasn't one of tank mates, apparently. Rather I think it may be a question of water movement in the tank.  <interesting> I noticed that the angel likes to scrutinize everything that it eats. With my original setup on the tank, 2 aqua clear 300's and 2 power heads moving water around, it had a difficult time chasing food around, watching it closely and then eating it. The food appeared to be moving a little too quickly for the fish to perform all of the aforementioned actions, and eat a decent portion of it.  <very dubious, my friend... water flow on the reefs where these fish are collected make our tanks look like quiet tide pools. Still... I trust your observation and perhaps it is somehow related> My solution, thus far, has been to turn off the 2 power heads and let the food float for a little while in the tank. So far he hasn't had a problem getting it. I have fed him twice using this arrangement, and once more with all of the filters and power heads running. Sure enough, with all of the water moving around he had a difficult time feeding. <fair enough... if this will go on for long... consider a little relay/timer to automatically turn pumps back on> Your comments about the Tuskfish were cause for some alarm, however. As I said the Tuskfish hasn't been aggressive towards the Angel. Nor does it seem to be an overly frisky eater, as you put it.  Nor does the Angel seem to have a problem being out and eating at the same time the Tuskfish does. <not at all a realistic evaluation without watching fishes mature (sexually especially) in the 1-3 year picture and beyond. many such Angels eat parasites (as cleaner fish) as juveniles, mucho algae as subadult and anything they darn well please as grumpy adults <. Yet a 2 week or even six month snapshot of such a fish or fishes is not even remotely indicative of how it/they will behave as it/they mature...no matter how much we both may wish for it <G>> I was told by multiple people that Tuskfish weren't aggressive, or overly territorial fish.  <I would indeed agree... mostly a problem with great activity and assertiveness. Can be very intimidating to other tankmates who although don't get molested by the Tusk, are still out competed and end up being stressed significantly over tie for it.> The person I purchased it from quipped that it looked the part of a real brute, but in fact was quite gentle toward other fish.  <hardly an unbiased opinion. I, instead, am not trying to sell you anything... just sharing opinions...heehee. But seriously... I do agree that for its size, it is especially passive... unless you are a crustacean <wink>> This was the reason I bought the fish in the first place...well okay he also looks great. Is this not true? According to your email, I should have grave concerns for any other fish that I put in the tank with him, particularly as he gets older.  <again... not attacking but out competing. Still can lead to attrition and intimidation into poor health for some fishes> If this is the case I may move him to another tank. <as long as the angel doesn't hard him and the tank is large enough... it sounds like it may very well be fine. Quite a beautiful pair too> Please understand, also, that I am well aware of the special requirements of each fish. I currently have (2) eighty gallon tanks right now, and I'm in the process of making (2) two hundred gallon tanks in my basement.  <very well... but the two fish as adults are still a lot of fish for a two hundred gallon tank. Two foot worth of dog confined to a six foot cage doesn't sound like much fun... and I like fish as much or more than dogs...heehee> Outside of building the tanks, which is a much larger project than I had first anticipated not to mention very expensive!!!!, it has also proven necessary to pour a more stable reinforced concrete pad in that section of the cellar. The plan is to have this finished by the time the fish are too big for their present homes. <excellent... best of luck in this endeavor> As always I await your response with baited anticipation..... BTW, you may remember the little Blonde Naso that I wrote to you about a few weeks ago.  You will be pleased to know that he is doing very well. Again a very large thank you on all of your help, and advice. <always great to hear follow up success stories... another big beautiful fish... hmmm, have you thought about skipping the two hundred gallon tank and just building a saltwater lagoon in the basement? How cool would that be!?!> God speed, Michael <kindly, Anthony>

Please Help Me, My Queen Angel is Sick! Dear Mr. Fenner, <Steven Pro in this morning.> About one month ago I purchased a Queen Angelfish from a local aquarium store. It is a gorgeous specimen and little over 4" in length. My tank setup is approximately 10 months old and is 46 gallon bow front <Very cramped quarters for this fish. It will easily reach 12" and up to 18" in the long run. Needs a tank at least 180 gallon (2'x2'x6') for proper growth.> with 55 lbs. of Fiji live rock, and a crushed coral substrate. I have a Tetra Tec PF300 power filter on back and a SeaClone Protein Skimmer also mounted on the back. The other inhabitants are a Humu Humu triggerfish and a small Fiji Devil Damsel. I do not currently have anything else like shrimps or invertebrates. My Queen has developed some kind of infection whether it is parasitic, bacterial, or fungal I can not determine, all I can do is describe it. It looks exactly like little tiny white pieces of feta cheese growing on its caudal, anal, dorsal, and pectoral fins. The majority of the "junk" is concentrated to the caudal fin where the material began to appear. <Sounds like a good description of Lymphocystis, a viral infection. You can see a picture of it here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/viraldislymph.htm on another Queen Angelfish. If you follow on to the linked FAQ files, you will find more information on causes and treatment.> The fish also seems to have Ick and/or velvet with small salt granular type bumps on its fins and body. <Could be Marine Ich/Cryptocaryon or small patches of Lymphocystis. More info on Ich can be found here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/parasitf.htm> In addition to the other aliments it also seems to be developing a case of Popeye in it's left eye. <Wow, this fish is getting hammered. I am guessing some aspect of its environment is off. Popeye info here http://www.wetwebmedia.com/popeyefaqs.htm> I have observed it swimming with its mouth open and its gills pumping quite rapidly. The fish also has erratic swimming patterns that include darting, rapid swimming, and tremors or rapid shaking. I have checked all my levels and my pH is at 8.1, and the others NH3, nitrite, and nitrates are at 0. Specific gravity checked out at 1.023. My Humu Humu Trigger seems to have marine ick but is showing no other signs of the aliments that the Queen is facing. I feed my fish twice a day with a broad diet containing a variety of frozen foods, seaweed selects algae strips, live brine shrimp, and occasionally shrimp from the Giant. I am currently trying to treat my fish with a combination of Maracyn-One and Organi-Cure copper sulfate treatments. <Ugh, in the main tank? A terrible idea. Your liverock is now dead rock and forever contaminated. Same goes for the crushed coral. All meds should be applied in a separate quarantine/hospital tank.> I have removed the carbon from my filter and turned off my protein skimmer. After one and a half weeks of copper-sulfate and 5 days of Maracyn I can see no improvement in the condition of my Queen in fact it seems to be getting worse. <Neither would help the Lymphocystis. Could in fact make it worse.> I tried doing a freshwater dip but it nearly killed the Queen after getting its gill barb stuck in my soft net, and from the shock of the freshwater. Please Mr. Fenner, I am desperate and have the means to fund a strong fight for the fish but I need to know if what I'm doing is right and if you have any suggestions, any at all, to please give them to me as soon as possible. I appreciate you reading my plea and taking the time to help. Thank you for your consideration. -Dan Heffelfinger P.S. I have read the Conscientious Marine Aquarist cover to cover a few times and enjoy it very much. <Do read through the above links to enlighten yourself as to the causes and corrective measures. Good luck. -Steven Pro>

Queen Angel Problem Hi Bob, <Steven Pro in this morning.> I came across your website today for the first time trying to figure out a complication with my Queen Angel. The problem is for the last week it's only breathing from one gill at an accelerated pace. <Sounds parasitic; Cryptocaryon, Amyloodinium, or Gill Flukes are all possibilities.> Behavioral patterns are normal, water conditions are fine, and the rest of the inhabitants are healthy. I've tried to locate this problem on other websites the past few days and came up with no results. Is there anything I can do to help this great fish. I really don't want to lose him. <Look up those diseases on our site, www.WetWebMedia.com, for treatment options. Quarantining and freshwater dips or formalin baths would be my course of action.> Thanks, Brian <You are welcome. -Steven Pro>

Sick Queen Angel? Hello how are you today ? <Fine, thank you! Scott F. here today> Sorry to bother you again! <Never a bother, my friend!> But my queen Angel as stopped eating two days ago! (can he stay a lot of time without eating??) and  seems to have cloudy eye and also the eye membrane seems to be damage going out a little bit still but less than before ,also a notice that his eyes are a little bit red ,and he also had like blood behind the lateral fins, but it seems that it is healing now (white covering it) also have white spots on the fins!!! but doesn't look like ich, he always hiding, but he is breathing normal !!! My nitrate was a little bit high, but I did a water change of about 30% of the tank (125 gallons)  and it is now ok. <Good decisive move!> All the other fish are fine. I wouldn't want this to spread to the other fish. Maybe  environmental disease? <Hard to say from here, but it may be a (secondary) bacterial infection of some sort. It may have been brought on by lapses in water quality, an injury, or some other trauma.> Should I move him out of the tank and use medication? If yes what should I use that is easy to get in almost all fish stores? I don't want to loose it. Thank you in advance and also HAPPY NEW YEAR! And again, thank you for your help! Your web site is  helping me a lot and I am sure a lot of aquarists, also! Continue the great work!!!! <I think it is time to move the fish to another tank for observation and treatment. I'd probably try a broad spectrum antibiotic, such as Maracyn Two in the treatment tank. Please note that antibiotics can interrupt nitrification in aquariums, so be sure to supply mechanical and chemical filtration in the treatment tank. Do keep reading on the wetwebmedia.com site to see if you find descriptions of any disorders that are similar to the one that your fish is experiencing. Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Save The Queen! (Sick Queen Angel) Hi, <Hi there! Scott F. with you today!> I just moved my two fish to a hospital tank for treatment of ich.  The queen angel is looking the worst, rapid gilling and signs of excessive mucus. <Hmm...could be a sign of Amyloodinium, which is a very aggressive parasitic disease, or possibly, a response to an environmental trauma of some sort...> I have a good level of copper in the tank, but I'm wondering if I should give a freshwater dip or if it would be too stressful on him.  If I leave him in the tank and just wait for the copper to show its effects on the disease, I'm worried he may not last that long.  What do you think?  As you can imagine, this is kind of an emergency, so thanks for your reply. Tim   <Well, if you also see a very fine "haze" of spots on the fish, it may very well be Amyloodinium, which can kill with horrifying rapidity if left unchecked. Do a quick scan for information about this illness on the WWM site, just to make sure. I would, however, check all "basic" water parameters ( pH, ammonia, nitrite) to verify if there is no environmental cause for the reaction that you are witnessing. I'd also check your copper level in the (treatment?) tank, to make sure that you did not overdose...Very important to measure when utilizing copper for a disease treatment. If dosed improperly, you could do more harm than good! Finally, I think that freshwater dips, properly executed, can certainly help with parasitic diseases. They should be used as a supplemental therapy, IMO, in conjunction with a course of copper sulphate at proper therapeutic levels. Decisive action is important with this illness, so if it's Amyloodinium, you did the right thing...Just keep a close eye on things, and be prepared to take further corrective actions as they become necessary. Good luck! Regards, Scott F>

Precious Fish Passed Away, But He Did His Best to Save It (4/5/04)   Hi there again Crew! <Steve Allen tonight>   Lost my prized queen angel....Gutted! And feel like giving up and forgetting about reef tanks etc. <So sorry for your loss, but hang in there.> I have gone around 4 years without any diseases at all. Including bringing back a yellow tang with terrible HLLE to a plump healthy beautifully coloured individual. <Good work. You have proven your abilities.> Have a couple of questions to ask you if I may? <Certainly.>   The only two signs something was wrong with the queen was increased respiration rate + refusal of any food. <A sure sign of disease.> I am not one usually given to knee-jerk re-actions, but in this case I knew I had to do something quick. I moved the queen to a hospital tank (with the water taken from the main display) and began treatment with copper. Now I know the queen (as are most angels I believe) are fairly intolerant of copper but as my bat was definitely suffering from Ich ( they were in the same tank) and until I QT'd the bat 4 days ago, I presumed that the queen had an infection which at this time was confined to the gills. From the first sign of distress to death was a matter of around 30 hours......Have you any idea if there was any other form of treatment I could have given? <Formalin can be a great alternative. It may not be the copper that killed the fish. Gill infestations are rapidly fatal. Angels have been successfully treated with proper copper dosing/levels.> Did I do the wrong thing? <Now> Should I have done FW dips? <FW or FW/Formalin dips are effective, but so is copper. Aggressive therapy was indicated here.> Should I not have used copper? <I do not think this was the big mistake you worry that it was. Something else may have been better, but I think your fish died because its gills were affected by the infestation, not due to your copper treatment.> There are still 4 fish left in the 6x2x2 should I remove them all or can I leave them until maybe 2 months has gone bye and after this time assume the disease has gone from the tank (The idea behind this being that if no other fish are infected then the Ich has not had a host?) or am I daft to think this? <It could still be lurking sub-clinically as long as their are fish in there. Have you any theory as to where the ich came from? I'd say the safest approach would be to quarantine and treat them (hyposalinity and increased temp, with copper or Formalin if signs/symptoms) to be safe. Leave the main tank fish-free for 6 weeks or so for the parasites to die out.>   After going for so long w/out disease I guess I got complacent and put one piece of live rock straight in the main tank and from there on lost half my fish. <More evidence to support the prevailing WWM view that all living things be quarantined, not just fish.> Anyhow from a fed-up (and now very broke) aquarist of many years I wish you all a good day. And hope to speak to you again soon with some better news. <We look forward to that.> With many thanks. Simon <Don't give up yet Simon. Your techniques are fundamentally sound. Do the QT/fallow to be safe and then think about a new fish to add down the road. Nothing can "replace" a precious/beloved animal that dies, but you can find another to cherish in its own right some day. Good luck to you.>

Queen Angel Coloring Cont'd Dear Ryan" <Eric,> I FW dip the queen angel, and right when he is at the FW a lot of white little "stuff" flying out of his gills and fins, he instantly open up his gills again and start eating those white stuff back!... strange... I figure that would not be good so I change the FW and dip him a little longer, then back into the QT... 1 day later he is breathing normally again, fins is all cleared and is eating/swimming normal. However, the color issue is still present, but not at night when the fish is asleep... (When I check him out at the middle of the light his body is uniform in color...) <Hmm...I'm sure you already know that Angels of this difficulty are easily infected with parasitic and fungal diseases.  I would certainly keep dosing with Formalin (if you already are), and continue the FW dips.> What would probably be the stuff that flies out from his gills?? Those stuff like expanded when coming out of the fish's gills.. It's soft, milky white, circular to the human eye... <Sounds fungal, but if you send a pic I'm sure that Bob/Anthony can verify> If now the fish is all well, should I treat it with any medication just in case?? <Yes, Formalin ASAP> Lastly, will small puffer (dogface) eat coral and cleaner shrimps that larger than itself? <Yes, and likely choke to death in the process.  I wish you the best of luck getting this animal healthy!> Eric

Queen Angel... health  - 5/18/2006 Hi Crew,   I recently purchased a Queen Angel and have him housed in my 200 gallon FOWLR Tank. He has been in the tank for about three days now and have not started eating yet but he is swimming around. This morning I noticed what looks like his intestines sticking out of his rectum and after about 2 hours it seems to have gone back in. I was wondering what could have caused this and what am I to do about it? <Mmm, not much other than hope for a self-cure. There are such causes for "prolapsed colon" condition that can be parasitic in origin, but these cannot, should not be addressed with chemical treatments in the short term. Bob Fenner>

Need help with a queen that's flickering and scratching    4/16/06 Hi there ,   I looking for some advise on what to do if anything with  my queen angel.   I have a 4 inch queen in a 125 for about a  month  now and she's been doing great and eats like crazy.  I noticed yesterday that she's been flickering/shimmy once in a while . <Is a normal/natural behavior to a degree>   I also noticed her rub here mouth or face against the rock and some ornaments several times .  She has no visible signs on her . My water parameters are fine .  (0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 8.3 ph, and nitrates usually kept around .10).  I'm debating whether to do anything right now or wait?   <I would wait> I was thinking of giving a freshwater dip for a few minutes then a 1 hour bath in saltwater with Methylene blue or Para guard (SeaChem).  I also have something called "quick cure" which has malachite green and formalin but I've never used this product. <Is mentioned on WWM, is toxic...>    By the way I've been running a  15 gallon QT tank for about two weeks now .  there's are two perculas in there right now.  Your advice is well appreciated.         Peter <Please read over WWM re all marine Angel and species disease, systems... Bob Fenner> Pete Collazo
Re: need help with a queen that's twitching and scratching***update**  - 04/19/2006
Hi there My Queen is still twitching and rubbing against objects in the tank though she still has no visible parasite signs and is eating very well. This has been going on now for six days so I'm getting worried its only going to get worse and I want to do something before its too late. <I would not "do something" here>   As stated previously, I have a 15g QT that's cycled and been using water from the display tank with a penguin BioWheel/   I was considering giving her a  5 minute fw dip with either Methylene blue or quick cure then moving her to the qt .  While in qt , which chemical treatment would you recommend ? <... none> Cupramine, CopperSafe, ParaGuard or Methylene blue? Also since I shouldn't be using carbon in the qt , how often do I need to change the water?     Thanks Peter <... posted on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Hyposalinity...   4/18/06 Bob   thanks for your quick reply . just one other thing. A friend suggested to lower my salinity to about 1.016   I previously had the sg at 1.022 and its now 1.020 after yesterday's water change.   Would lowering the  sg to 1.018 help at all in eradicating a parasite and is it a safe and comfortable level for a queen angel.  She still eating a lot but the shimmering and scratching hasn't stopped .    thanks      Peter <Please read here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/martrthyposalfaqs.htm and the linked files above. BobF>

Angelfishes for  Marine Aquariums
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