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Old 11-07-2004, 03:32 PM   #1
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Live rock and parasites

I am going to be setting up a large 450 gallon fish-only marine tank. I am trying to decide how much live rock to add. I know there is a rough per gallon formula to follow but I am concerned about how live rock might affect preventing and treating parasites.

If I have a parasite outbreak in my tank won't the live rock provide a shelter to the parasites and make it harder to treat? If I have a quarantine tank and I take out the diseased fish and treat them in the quarantine tank will this be the best solution? I guess what I am having trouble swallowing is the theory that if you take out the diseased fish and treat separately in a quarantine tank you will stop the parasites life cycle. Is this possible without removing all of the fish?

Thanks,
Pete
New York
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Old 11-07-2004, 05:18 PM   #2
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Re: Live rock and parasites

Quote:
Originally Posted by peterac
I know there is a rough per gallon formula to follow but I am concerned about how live rock might affect preventing and treating parasites. If I have a parasite outbreak in my tank won't the live rock provide a shelter to the parasites and make it harder to treat?
Treatment should never take place in the display tank so it wouldn't be a factor. Any hard surface area's in the tank are sufficient for parasites to multply, the LR is irrelavent. With most types of meds used, CaCO3 based items (LR/sand) will sorb copper and other meds making them hard to maintain. All meds affective against parasites will also destroy the beneficial fauna and possibley the biofilter depending on what's used.

Quote:
If I have a quarantine tank and I take out the diseased fish and treat them in the quarantine tank will this be the best solution?
Fish should be quarantined before entering the display tank. Given enough time during quarantine (4 weeks), a parasite or other malady will surface if there and can be properly treated without affecting exhisting livestock or contaminating the display.

Quote:
I guess what I am having trouble swallowing is the theory that if you take out the diseased fish and treat separately in a quarantine tank you will stop the parasites life cycle. Is this possible without removing all of the fish?
If the main does become infested for whatever reason, all fish must be removed from the display, not just the infected fish. Once all fish are removed and the display remains fallow (fishless) for at least 4-6 weeks will the life cycle be broken. As long as a fish remains there will be a food source and the parasites life cycle will continue.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 11-17-2004, 09:41 PM   #3
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Thanks Steve.

I guess I really need to think harder about this. If I have a well stocked 450 gallon tank, how would I possibly get all my livestock out of the tank to treat for parasites? Do I just basically make sure that I do not get an outbreak by doing med dips on all new fish before having them enter my main tank? Would a UV filter help much?

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Pete
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Old 11-17-2004, 09:49 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by peterac
how would I possibly get all my livestock out of the tank to treat for parasites? Do I just basically make sure that I do not get an outbreak by doing med dips on all new fish before having them enter my main tank?
With a system that size, you should take every precaution not to introduce parasites from every source possible. That means quarantining every item for 4-6 weeks before it enters your display tank. Dips aren't going to allow that step to be missed nor are they effective on everything.

Quote:
Would a UV filter help much?
IME, false hope. In a smaller system it would help minimize infestations and will aid in conjunction with proven cures in a QT setting but by no means a cure unto themselves. In a larger system it would be like swatting an elephant with a fly swatter.

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Old 11-18-2004, 01:13 AM   #5
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Here's our article on qt, it should be helpful:
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/showqu...q=2&fldAuto=17

Better to go larger than suggested though as a qt tank in the range of 29-50 gallons would allow for multiple / larger fish to be comfortable for 5 weeks. Might be wisdom to get this qt tank up and cycling ASAP.
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:44 AM   #6
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Yeah I cycled my QT first. Had my first fish in there while I cured rock in the main.
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Old 11-18-2004, 10:18 AM   #7
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Wow, a 450...how cool. Green with envy!!
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