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Old 11-19-2010, 10:43 PM   #1
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Diseased fish... help? --- fuzzy white spots

Hi,

I have had my tank for a couple years now, but I have neglected it some (I know, I am a horrible fish keeper). The last couple months I have been slowly cleaning out the tank, regular water changes slowly increasing the amount so as not to stress my remaining fish to death (they must be pretty hardy though to have survived this long!)

I actually wanted to join this forum to ask advice about where to go from here, how can I make my tank liveable again so I may add fish and enjoy the past time again... but soon after I joined the forum I took a good look at my fish and noticed one dead (that was last night actually) and one with a nasty looking fuzzy white spot on his side. His caudal fin also looks like it might be rotting away somewhat as well. He was always the healthiest of the fish I had left too.

He is a gold tetra and only occupying a 15 gallon tank with one other gold tetra at the moment (who seems to be doing alright with a partially destroyed caudal fin... which he has had since before I started to change my ways).

I know after this horror story that some of you might not want to help, but please, I ask of you, help me! What can I do for my fish with the fuzzy white spot (probably half his body height, height being from back to belly).

None of my fish have been eating really since last week I think before I left on a road trip (last Thursday I think?). They had done this before so I figured maybe I had overfed them the couple of days before.

The one that died last night was swimming strangely, on his side and upside down. He also spent a fair amount of time on the bottom of the tank.

I don't know if this is all the information you might need to help... anything you can tell me would be helpful. Would it almost be better to euthanize these last couple fish, put them out of their misery with me as an owner, and start anew?
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Old 11-19-2010, 10:47 PM   #2
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Have you had the fish for the same amount of time as the tank? They could be old, and the mold stuff might have happened after he died. But since the other one has a fin issue too, you could try Melafix and Pimafix, which won't harm your biological filter.
What are your water readings?
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Old 11-19-2010, 10:58 PM   #3
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The fish are getting a little old I think... over a year and a half I think. Tank is older than they are. The ammonia and nitrite seemed fine, but the nitrate was a little high so I did go through a water change today... 20% I think? I've been getting into the habit of doing a water change at least once a week and testing the water fairly frequently... when I first started this fix the values were really screwy.

The one with the fuzzy white spot on his side is still alive actually; the one who swam sideways and upside down was the one who died.
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Old 11-20-2010, 03:21 AM   #4
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Hmm, well if he is alive with the fuzziness, then I would try some Melafix and Pimafix.

I do 50% pwc's once a week on my tanks. It's a pain sometimes, but the fish are happy.

To lower the nitrates, I usually rinse the filter media in old tank water, and do a gravel vac.
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Old 11-20-2010, 02:30 PM   #5
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How many other fish do you have in this tank? Do you really want to keep it as is? Or do you want to use this as an opportunity to start over?

You said the values were screwy....can you elaborate? Have you already had an ammonia spike and nitrite...or was it just the nitrates that were high...and how high is "a little high"....just to be clear there is no judgement here, I just want to help you decide the best course of action.

Personally I would do a treatment of the entire tank with Maracyn and Maracyn 2, which will kill your bio filter unfortuneately. You may want to put the fish in a QT tank (or container large enough) and treat them in there while you start over with your main tank, that way you can give it a good cleaning and rearrange anything you need or want to change with it before putting the fish back in. It would also spare you from killing your entire biofilter in your main tank.

With a QT tank say...10 gallons next to a sink it is super easy to do daily or twice daily water changes also which will help them get better SO much faster.
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Old 11-20-2010, 02:44 PM   #6
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Honestly, at the moment I would like to start over... I am down to my last couple fish (the one with the problem I talked about earlier has since expired overnight... It was something I noticed that day too! He seemed fine the day before and now he's gone.

Really if anything I'd like to pack it up and start anew after I move (I am planning on moving fairly soon and moving a fish tank is apparently a pain.)
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Old 11-20-2010, 04:38 PM   #7
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Meh, moving is not bad if you plan ahead. I just moved 4 tanks across the state.
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:44 PM   #8
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It's a little cold here in Canada (Manitoba) most of the year around to comfortably move fish around for me... well at least for the next 5 months or so..
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Old 11-20-2010, 07:57 PM   #9
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It's a little cold 20 miles from the Canadian Border too LOL. But I moved in September, not December.
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Old 11-21-2010, 01:19 AM   #10
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Depending on where you plan on going in the hobby, I really hate carrying around buckets and got an off-brand Python from Wal-Mart. I can't always do the most thorough job cleaning the bottom of my tanks, but even if I just put the hose in the bottom and let it drain on it's own it has made it easy for me to keep up with regular water changes while preoccupied. I keep the protective cover on it and set something heavy on the lid to keep the hose in place and it'll do the work for me.

I can't comment on the weather though, it's still in the 70s during the day down here in Alabama!
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