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Old 07-12-2005, 03:25 AM   #1
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Does a busy cleaner shrimp mean I have parasites?

Hi forum! Got a question regarding my Raccoon Butterfly. It passed QT at the LFS and then a month of it in my own QT, with no problems. Added it to the main over a month ago, lately I noticed it rubbing on rocks once in a while, maybe a couple times a day. Bought a cleaner shrimp this weekend, and all day long today, the cleaner shrimp has been very busy, working only on the BF, who seems very happy to hover and let him clean. Does this mean my BF has a parasite, or just enjoying a good backscratching. What kind of parasite could it be? I see no visible signs of anything. There are occasional spats of aggression from the Indian Yellowtail Angel, but the BF lays on his side and raises his spines to defend himself (I'm setting up another tank to move the BF to if I can catch him).

Here are my facts from the "Stickie note":

1. How long have you had the fish? (2.5 months) Do you know if it was wild caught, or tank raised? (Not sure, probably wild caught)
2. How long has the fish been in the tank? (1 month) What are the tank mates? (2 Clowns, Gramma, Anthia, Y.Tang, Blenny, Yellowtail Angel) Any aggression? (Yes, from the Angel, probably due to similarity in body style)
3. Is the fish eating? (Very well) If so what does it eat? (Formula Two, Angel Formula, VHP, Live Brine, Mysis, Clams, Squid, Mussels)
4. What are the water parameters? pH (8.2), ammonia (0), nitrite (0), nitrate (20), SPG (1.024) What saltwater test kit are you using? (Aq.Pharm. and refractometer)
5. Is the fish showing any physical signs of disease, grain of salt size spots, discoloration, ragged fins, misting or spots on the fins, cuts, cloudy eyes, etc? (No, appears in perfect condition)
6. Is the fish "flashing" (Once in a while)
7. How is the fish acting? Is it swimming around, or just hovering in one spot or corner of the tank? (Swims around some, but occasionally hovers in one corner when Angel is cruising by)
8. Did you use quarantine? (Yes) If so for how long (35 days) and did you have a need to treat for any ailments (No)? Is it in qt now? (No) Are you currently treating with any medication(s)? (No)
9. What size system? (75G w/35G Fuge) What type of filtration do you use (925gph Wet/Dry)? Do you have any live rock (80#) or sand?
10. Do you use any additives? (pH Buffer, Vitamins) Have you used any sort of meds in the main tank? (Vitamins only)

I'm scratching my head here...have always seemed to spot parasites before, not sure what I could be missing. TIA.

--Aquabear
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In order of setup:

FW1-16g, 5 Zebra danios, 4 Pristella Tetras, 4 Black Skirt Tetras, 2 Gold Barbs, 1 Brush-nose Pleco
FW2-5g, 1 Baby Gold Marble Angel (raised from fry), 6 Zebra Danios
SW1-75g, (80# LR), Scarlett hermits, Turbo snails, Percula Clownfish (Gizmo), Oscellaris Clownfish (Whizzer), Indian Yellowtail Angelfish (Mikado), Royal Gramma (Orpheus), Black Sailfin Blenny (Casper), Yellow Tang (Pele), Racoon Butterflyfish (Raptor), Lyretail Anthia (Juliette)
FW3-30g, 2 mated Gold Marble Angels (Oscar/Yenta)
SW2-20g, QT, currently empty
FW4-30g, currently empty
FW5-20g, 2 Gold Angels (non-paired)
SW3-35g (REFUGIUM for SW1) - EVIL ChocChipStar, Nassarius and Turbo snails
SW4-55g, 4 BlueGreen Chromis, King's Crown snail.
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Old 07-12-2005, 06:10 AM   #2
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He just might be stressed from the aggression from the angel. My blue tang, when he swims around tends to hover in front of my cleaner wrasse, and the blue tang is in perfect condition. I think they just like dead skin taken off as soon as they can, whether that be a scratch on the rock, cleaner wrasse or shrimp. Everything else looks fine so i think it may have something to do with the angel. GL!
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Old 07-12-2005, 09:57 PM   #3
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Cleaner shrimp dont only clean parasites but also dead skin and other things that can be on the fish.
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Old 07-13-2005, 12:00 PM   #4
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I figured staying in the corner had something to do with stress. The Angel is extremely overbearing, he pulls rank on every other fish, except for the clown that was in the tank before him, and the clown the went through quarantine with him. I knew it would have been best to introduce the Angel first, but he was kind of rare and very young at the time, so I decided to take the risk and get him while I could. I guess Indian Yellowtails aren't that common.

I never thought about him removing dead skin, but I guess even scales wear out, so that makes sense. Oh well, I got my rocks fastened down and added Bio Spira last night, so I'm on my way to getting a new home set up for the butterfly.

Cool, I feel a lot better now. Thanks!

--Aquabear
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In order of setup:

FW1-16g, 5 Zebra danios, 4 Pristella Tetras, 4 Black Skirt Tetras, 2 Gold Barbs, 1 Brush-nose Pleco
FW2-5g, 1 Baby Gold Marble Angel (raised from fry), 6 Zebra Danios
SW1-75g, (80# LR), Scarlett hermits, Turbo snails, Percula Clownfish (Gizmo), Oscellaris Clownfish (Whizzer), Indian Yellowtail Angelfish (Mikado), Royal Gramma (Orpheus), Black Sailfin Blenny (Casper), Yellow Tang (Pele), Racoon Butterflyfish (Raptor), Lyretail Anthia (Juliette)
FW3-30g, 2 mated Gold Marble Angels (Oscar/Yenta)
SW2-20g, QT, currently empty
FW4-30g, currently empty
FW5-20g, 2 Gold Angels (non-paired)
SW3-35g (REFUGIUM for SW1) - EVIL ChocChipStar, Nassarius and Turbo snails
SW4-55g, 4 BlueGreen Chromis, King's Crown snail.
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