We have a 55 gal
tank with an Aqueon 55/75 filter, 60+lbs of live rock, 3 sea urchins (initially tiny hitchhikers, thriving well, and very large now.) We are only about 5 months into this hobby...all of our fish are tank bred, we have 2 small clowns, a purple psuedo, a blue tang, a longnosed butterflyfish and a spotted boxfish. everyone gets along fine. We learned the hard way about quarantining...frankie, our boxfish and last addition, brought Ich into our tank. Blue tang and purple psuedo went downhill fast, covered, gasping, so..
We tried hyposalinity in 2 HT, one 29 gal
, and one 18 gal
, so they had room, and it appeared to work. All seemed to recover. left them in there for 4 wks, gradually brought up the salinity, returned them to the DT (ph 8.2, hardness 9, amm 0, nitrite, 0, nitrate 0). Within 7 days, the Ich was back, white bumps on the blue tang.
Back to QT for all...this time for copper. blue tang, butterfly and boxfish in the 29 gal
, other three small ones in the 18. Started w/the 29...brought the level gradually to 4.5 or so, over 3 days, on the way to 6.0...water parameters match above levels, and frankie the blue-eyed boxfish gets listless, hangs out on the bottom, appetite waaay down...so today i put him in the 18 gal
with the 3 little ones, no copper there, and he perked right up. (I havent started dosing them yet, they dont show symptoms...thought I'd see how it went with the others. Glad I did.)
So, no treatment to main DT tank...plan on leaving it fallow for 2 months this time, will that kill the Ich? Urchins seem fine...do I need to feed them? if so, what? Tried algea sheets, no interest, lol.
Any other advice? I plan on doing a 30% water change tomorrow on the 29 gal
to lower the copper level, so I can add the 3 fish from the 18 gal
., and then bring it up again (and more) so as to also treat the 3 little ones. I know it is close quarters, but I am willing to do frequent water changes and keep dosing to keep levels up, if necessary. After the 2 wk copper treatment, I can spread them out again. Don't think Frankie can tolerate the copper. I ordered a copper test kit from my LFS
, in the meantime I am bringing water in. I plan on getting it up to between 5.0-6.0 for two weeks as advised, then water changes to bring it down. By the time the DT is ready, I will have a month or so left in HT to observe for disease.
If this doesn't work, I'm lost. Frankie will have to fight it off on his own, the copper was making him sick. Please feel free to comment and advise...we are new and dont want to kill our friends - Frank Sinatra (Frankie) Jimi Hendrix (pseudo), Sid and Nancy (clowns), Gilda (blue tang) and pinnochio. Thank you so much...I have learned a lot here, and look forward to your guidance.