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Old 03-26-2006, 03:29 PM   #1
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What are my options?

Well, I am frustrated. I had my Coral Beauty in QT for almost 2 months, and he was healthy, so I began setting up and cycling my 46-gallon. About a week into my cycle, my Coral Beauty came down with ich! Over 2 months after getting him! On the recommendation of my LFS, I treated him with a product called Coral-Vital, which turned out now to be a waste of time...a week later, it is not as bad, but there are still a few spots, and he is back to scraping himself.

Here's my problem: My 46-gallon is ready for a fish, and I don't have a healthy fish to put in there. And now I have wasted an entire week attempting this Coral-Vital treatment.

I treated for 6 days like the LFS said, and the Coral Beauty got better, but never really looked normal. I did not treat yesterday, and now today I see a few tiny spots on his head and see him scraping himself against my heater and my rocks. I know that the best treatment would be hyposalinity, but with that method, my 46-gallon will "uncycle." How can I keep the bacteria alive in the 46-gallon while I get this Coral Beauty healthy in QT? I don't want to put a fish with ich in my display tank, but purchasing a fish from my LFS and putting him directly in there seems just as dangerous?

I put this question in this forum instead of sick fish because my question is not so much how to treat the ich, my question is how to avoid wasting my cycle in my 46-gallon. I suppose it was too much to hope that everything would go perfectly, but still, how frustrating! Any advice?
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38 Gallon (Freshwater): 1 Green Swordtail, 3 Yo-Yo Loaches, 1 Clown Pleco, 1 Blue Gourami, 4 Otocinclus, 7 Cherry Barbs.

46 Gallon (Saltwater): 60 pounds Lalo Live Rock, 60 pounds aragonite sand, 1 Coral Beauty Angelfish, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, 1 Mushroom Coral, 1 Emerald Crab, various snails and hermit crabs.

10 Gallon (Saltwater quarantine):
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Old 03-26-2006, 04:37 PM   #2
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Angels should never be the first fish in a new tank. Way too sensitive. Even though the fish was kept in a QT for a long time, the stresses of a new tank has a habit of weakening angels as well as tangs and some other fish. The system should be well established long before these types of fish go in a tank. I usually recommend waiting about 6 months before introducing these types of fish.

Start populating the main tank with critters that will help maintain the tank first. Reef hermits, small snails, some shrimp, but particularly skunk cleaner shrimp. These shrimp are very proactive in eating parasites off of fish as well as throughout the system. Do you have live rock in the main tank?

Wait a week or two, tend to the angel in the QT by offering garlic soaked food and continue treating the fish and then slowly acclimate the angel to the system. Sometimes you may need to do a second round of treatment. If the ich parasite persists after the second round, then switch to a medication that has a different active ingredient. This helps prevent the problem of parasites becoming resistant to meds.
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Old 03-26-2006, 04:43 PM   #3
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I just noticed you have stated in your sig that you have live rock in the QT. This can make getting rid of parasites harder and take longer. There's a horde of nooks and crannies for these parasites to hide and escape the onslaught of meds meant to kill them. I always prefer a bare bottom QT with just heating elements, a filter, and a hide out for the fish. The hide out should be plastic or at least non-porous and easy to sanitize...like a flower pot.
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We, as a people, know so much more about outer space than we do about our own oceans. This lack of knowledge can very well spell the dangers that lay in wait for us.

The oceans surely would swallow us before a rock comes down to smite the planet of it's life.
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Old 03-26-2006, 05:14 PM   #4
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I think what I would do at this point is take a look at my stock list and try to find a fish that I planned on getting later and add that to the main tank. Hopefully there is something on your list which a LFS has, and that has been there in the store for several weeks and still appears healthy. Also I would pick a very hardy fish, like maybe a gramma or a goby. You can then take your time about treating the angelfish in QT and not be worried about keeping the main display cycled.

I make a habit of checking out the shops periodically looking at potential new additions. I know this may not be an option if you live someplace where there is a high turnover on livestock in the LFS, but that's not the case where I am. I added my flame angel to my 50 gallon last, but he went directly into the display tank because I had been watching him in the store for 5 or 6 weeks and was fairly certain he was healthy. Just had to cross my fingers that he wouldn't be sold before I was ready for him, and lucked out with nobody else buying him.

Actually Petco helped me out with that. They routinely sell flame angels for around $39 but usually their fish are a crap shoot on how healthy they are. With the cheap prices at Petco, nobody bought my flame angel which was priced at $60 at the good store. I didn't mind paying the extra $20 at all knowing I was getting a healthy fish.

Good luck with the coral beauty.
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Old 03-26-2006, 06:45 PM   #5
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Yes, I know NOW that live rock in the QT was a bad idea, however, you can chalk this up to a newbie mistake. I wasn't aware then. It's too late now, so I'm going to have to find a workaround for this.

Here's my ich battle plan...tell me what you think:

I purchased a 5-gallon Rubbermaid tote. I can take the 5.5 pounds live rock out of the QT and put in here. I know this isn't my best option, but I don't dare put it in the 46 as it could have ich that has fallen off of my fish that would infect my 46. I realize the bacteria will die, but if I put it in 5 gallons of saltwater and put a powerhead in there with it, the pods and such living inside should be OK, right?

Then, now with no live rock in the QT, and a plastic hideout for my Coral Beauty, I would then treat with Coppersafe by Mardel. I realize that most people avoid chemical treatments here, but from what I have read, copper is a reasonably safe and very effective method for treating ich. I realize I will never be able to put invertebrates in the tank again, but as this will be a true QT now (the live rock will not be going back in), this is OK. I can get a second 10 gallon tank that I can set up elsewhere if I need to QT or set aside invertebrates. I will turn the heat up to the low 80s to speed up the ich life cycle, and hopefully kill the ich within 2 weeks. Hopefully, there will still be some live bacteria in the 46 at this point.

At this point, I will transfer the Coral Beauty to the 46, transferring no water from the QT into the 46. Then I can dump the QT, completely clean it out and dry it out to get it ready for the next fish. My problem then will be killing any ich on the 5.5 pounds of live rock? Could I leave it in the 5-gallon tote with a power head for a few months? With no fish in there, I know the bacteria will die, but so should the ich.

I know this is not a perfect plan, but unfortunately my newbie mistake with the LR in QT doesn't give me any "ideal" options. Would you risk putting a fish from LFS (even if healthy for a few weeks) directly into the 46 (for instance, 2 clownfish)?

Paul
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38 Gallon (Freshwater): 1 Green Swordtail, 3 Yo-Yo Loaches, 1 Clown Pleco, 1 Blue Gourami, 4 Otocinclus, 7 Cherry Barbs.

46 Gallon (Saltwater): 60 pounds Lalo Live Rock, 60 pounds aragonite sand, 1 Coral Beauty Angelfish, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, 1 Mushroom Coral, 1 Emerald Crab, various snails and hermit crabs.

10 Gallon (Saltwater quarantine):
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:54 PM   #6
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Ich will starve within a few days without any fish to snack on. Then the larvae will hatch and they will starve within a few days without any fish. Keep the live rock free of fish for a total of six weeks. There should be well enough natural growth to keep the bio somewhat intact on the LR.

Get other animals populated in the 46 to keep the bio going like the crabs, and shrimp I had mentioned earlier. You may even want to get an algae blenny to help maintain algae.

Quote:
Would you risk putting a fish from LFS (even if healthy for a few weeks) directly into the 46 (for instance, 2 clownfish)?
Not really. Though risks of transferring anything to the main tank is less, there is still risk of the fish getting sick if not isolated for a little bit. Transferring fish from one system to another is stressing enough to lower the animal's immune system and come down with something. The QT is specifically meant to protect the main tank. In a situation where a fish hasn't sold and has done well in the store for several weeks, instead of keeping the fish in the QT for two weeks, perhaps that time can be cut down by half (one week instead of two).
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We, as a people, know so much more about outer space than we do about our own oceans. This lack of knowledge can very well spell the dangers that lay in wait for us.

The oceans surely would swallow us before a rock comes down to smite the planet of it's life.
Nov/2004
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:11 PM   #7
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Sounds good...I haven't purchased a cleanup crew yet because there is no algae growing in my tank. Shockingly enough, I haven't even experienced the diatom bloom most people generally experience yet. I have been cycled for about 4 days, and have been running about an 11-hour day with the lights for the last few days, not even a hint of algae, nitrates running around 10 ppm.

My Lalo Rock is covered in gorgeous purple, green, and yellow corraline...it had some beautiful pink too, but that has faded...hopefully it will come back! I was planning on picking up the 30-gallon deluxe cleanup crew here:
http://www.etropicals.com/product/pr...45&pCatId=1766

Should I get it now? Or should I wait until algae starts to grow? I'm afraid if I put them in, the crabs will start going after the snails immediately. I do have algae disks, but is it a good idea to get them started with those? I'd hate for them to wait for algae disks and ignore my algae when it grows!

Paul
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38 Gallon (Freshwater): 1 Green Swordtail, 3 Yo-Yo Loaches, 1 Clown Pleco, 1 Blue Gourami, 4 Otocinclus, 7 Cherry Barbs.

46 Gallon (Saltwater): 60 pounds Lalo Live Rock, 60 pounds aragonite sand, 1 Coral Beauty Angelfish, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, 1 Mushroom Coral, 1 Emerald Crab, various snails and hermit crabs.

10 Gallon (Saltwater quarantine):
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:18 PM   #8
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What lights do you ahve for the tank? What is the total wattage?
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We, as a people, know so much more about outer space than we do about our own oceans. This lack of knowledge can very well spell the dangers that lay in wait for us.

The oceans surely would swallow us before a rock comes down to smite the planet of it's life.
Nov/2004
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:24 PM   #9
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It is a 25 watt ZooMed Reef Sun Bulb. I don't plan to have corals, so this should be fine?

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/Produc...&N=2004+113350

Paul
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38 Gallon (Freshwater): 1 Green Swordtail, 3 Yo-Yo Loaches, 1 Clown Pleco, 1 Blue Gourami, 4 Otocinclus, 7 Cherry Barbs.

46 Gallon (Saltwater): 60 pounds Lalo Live Rock, 60 pounds aragonite sand, 1 Coral Beauty Angelfish, 1 Peppermint Shrimp, 1 Mushroom Coral, 1 Emerald Crab, various snails and hermit crabs.

10 Gallon (Saltwater quarantine):
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Old 03-26-2006, 11:19 PM   #10
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That is not enough to keep the natural growth on the live rock. To keep that natural growth and to have it continue to grow you need reef lighting...at least 3 watts per gallon and the rock needs to be fed calcium and alkalinity to promote more of the coraline algae growth.

I'll get back to you later with a link to a good lighting system that's affordable.
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We, as a people, know so much more about outer space than we do about our own oceans. This lack of knowledge can very well spell the dangers that lay in wait for us.

The oceans surely would swallow us before a rock comes down to smite the planet of it's life.
Nov/2004
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