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Old 08-10-2010, 11:11 PM   #1
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clowns are not happy

I had 2 A perculas and were doing great for about a week. Eating an assortment of food. Then after 2 weeks they came down with ick. I turned off the AC in my house as it was supposed to be under 80 but when I got home, water temp was over 82-83į. The tank was an established 40 breeder that went through the full fishless cycle. I treated with coppersafe and one didn't make it . the other laid on the bottom for 3 days. I came home from work today and he is up swimming vertical like a bouy tail down head up. It is almost like when he stops kicking he sinks like his swim bladder is not functioning. At least he is showing progress. I chose to treat the entire 40 as I could not set up a hospital in time and did not have the resources to do so. I do not plan on putting invertibrates in the 40 anyways and had no plans of adding more fish for months so I did not quarentine. I just have 40 gallons to deal with instead of 20. Water params were always perfect. The copper safe directions are sketchy at best. I added the recommended dosage but they do not tell how often to treat or if it is just 1 dose or multiple. What can I do to help the little guy out and how much more coppersafe do I add? The directions just don't say. I believe it was the suddon higher temp change that brought the ick out. I thought about hyposaline treatment. He has not eaten in 4 days. Offered his favorite pellets and shrimp brine. He has no interest. ANy help will be appreciated.

As of right now
1 dose of coppersafe
PH 8.0
nitrate 0
nitrite 0
ammonia 0
1.022
78į f
I have a sponge filter and another airstone going for max oxygen.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:18 PM   #2
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How much Coppersafe did you add to begin with? Fish can only tolerate certain concentrations of copper for an extended period of time.
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:35 PM   #3
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The bottle said 1 tsp for 4 gallons so I added 9 1/2 tsp's as the level was down a little and the sand offsets some. It says that it "treats the water for 1 month."
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Old 08-10-2010, 11:47 PM   #4
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Do you have a copper test kit? I wouldn't add anymore until you do and find that the copper is at an adequate/safe level.
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Old 08-11-2010, 12:57 AM   #5
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An issue about using copper medications in a tank with rock or sand is that the rock/sand will suck up some of the copper out of the water. That's fine if you're not going to put inverts in the tank later, but it's not fine because it lowers the effective dosage of copper in the water. You really need a copper test kit when you dose copper meds to make sure the concentrations are where they should be. Lower dosages won't be effective.

Sorry I can't help with the Coppersafe question though... never used it. You mentioned hyposalinity though, and if you decide to go that route make sure the copper is fully removed from the water before doing it - probably best to use a PolyFilter or one of the copper-removing resins on the market. You don't want to mix copper meds AND hyposalinity - it's the equivalent of overdosing on copper.
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Old 08-11-2010, 09:22 AM   #6
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Thanks all. I am going to see the progress tonight and if he is showing improvement I will stay the course with the copper and get a test kit. I was wondering about the absorbing some of the copper also as I read it several places. If I test the water and copper is at a acceptable level and he doesn't show signs of improvement, I may try hypo. It's going on 5 days with no food. A couple more and he's not gonna make it I would guess. Let this be a lesson to anyone reading this post now and in the future; USE A QUARENTINE TANK, regardless of what you have planned, read or think. Now if he doesn't make it, I have to throw away the sand and start completely over. Not to mention losing 2 clowns. In the long run it will be worth it rather than worrying about the copper. I have read bad things from last years threads about API test kits, are they useable? What should the range be?
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Old 08-11-2010, 09:23 AM   #7
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For future reference, copper and hyposalinity should never be done in your DT. As Kurt said, the rock can and will absorb an undetermined amount of the copper out of the water column. Further more, copper treatments kill the beneficial bacteria needed for the nitrogen cycle leaving your fish exposed to dangerous levels of ammonia and nitrites and it also essentially turns your LR into dead rock. Also, now that the rock has absorbed copper, after you stop treating it, copper will be present in your tank indefinitely as it leaches back out of the rock.

That is why a QT tank is crucial to have for dosing copper or doing Hypo. It allows you to consistently monitor the copper levels with out worrying about the rate at which the LR is absorbing it and it also makes it easier to keep the amm/nitirite levels in check with water changes. Ideally when dosing copper, a 10-20% water change twice a day will keep the levels in check and help keep the water in pristine condition for optimal recovery.
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Old 08-11-2010, 09:29 AM   #8
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I think we were typing at the same time. I did take out the 12 lbs of live rock and put in a 20gal before dosing. All that is in my DT is sand and PVC elbows and a large sponge filter with 2 extra air stones. As I now realize my initial intentions of just having 2 clowns still was not good planning in a small 40gal. I figured with 2 fish bought from the same tank on the same day going into thye same tank it would be the same as a quarentine tank for 2 months. I was at least smart enough to pull 1 of the 2 bio filters and the LR out before dosing. Quarentine tank would have definately made this easier.
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Old 08-11-2010, 09:32 AM   #9
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I am checking the Am/Ni/Na/Sa daily in the 40. So far all is 0 but if I have to make drastic changes I will go into a 10 gal I have laying around for Hypo. so I can make 20% water changes 2 times a day. I really don't want to lose the last one.
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