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Old 03-10-2008, 11:30 AM   #1
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New clown loaches MIGHT have Ich.

I can't really tell for sure, but over the weekend I decided to get that temp up just in case. I know that loaches are prone to get it, and that they usually get hit first. By accident, I raised the temp. way too fast (8 degrees in 12-18 hours). The temp was set at 80, and I got it up to 88 sometime b/w 12 and 18 hrs later. Of course increased aeration has been added.

Anyway at night, I turn my apt's thermostat down to 50 (from 60) and I added another heater to help keep up. I was worried about the temp climbing higher (since it was still SLOWLY rising very slightly) so I turned the temp on the small heater to click off at the current tank temp, and turned the big heater down a degree or two. In theory, the larger heater should have stopped increasing the temp and the smaller one should have kept it right where it was at. Well I think turning the large heater down (ONLY a degree or two) coupled with shutting the one 65w light off, coupled with the temp in my apt dropping by 10degrees caused my water to cool off to 84. I know for a fact that there is enough power w/ the 2 heaters to keep the tank temp steady, I just need to find the right settings to do it.

So over 2.5 days, my temp went from 80, to 88 (too fast), then back down to 84 (at a pace not faster than 2deg/hour). Before I left for work this morning I cranked the large heater back up 2 deg to where it was at when it was holding at 88 or possibly SLOWLy rising towards 89. The small heater was on steadily and I didn't adjust it since it should still be set at 88.

All fish are acting fine, none are gasping for air, no others show signs of ich. All have good appetites. I couldn't tell you what the loaches look like b/c they rarely come out of their "tubes".

Advice? Tips for keeping a constant temp? Anything to watch/look out for besides more temp swings...lol?
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Old 03-10-2008, 09:02 PM   #2
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Flashing is the main thing to watch out for. Once you get the temp steady just keep it that way. Keep an eye on the fish for any signs of stress, color loss, hiding, lack of appetite. You should be ok though.
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Old 03-11-2008, 12:18 PM   #3
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I haven't seen any flashing yet, and as of 8:30am this morning the ich had not spread.

I wish there was a way to tell for sure if the C. Loaches even had ich, because all I can see are like 2-4 white spots on one of the loaches. It could be on others but they're super shy (and new to the tank, prob 10 days now) so I only see one or two at at time, if that. Do they sometimes have white salt grain sized spots (just a couple) that is NOT ich? I ask b/c I'd expect to see it spreading (especially at 84f since it's life cycle is fastest at this temp) but it is not spreading.

I added another heater last night b/c it appears I was wrong about having enough power to keep it at 88 when I turn my thermostat down to 50 at night.

I think knowing what to do and catching it early (like human sickness) can really make or break it so I hope it won't spread.

So I know that rapid temp changes are bad for fish, but what about a constantly higher than normal temp (88f)?

Again, I already increased the surface disturbance for increased aeration.

I have:
3 Gouramis
1 Redtail shark
3 corydoras
1 Yo yo botia loach
3 clown loaches
6 Harlequinn Rasboras
2 Kribensis Cichlids
2 Brichardi Cichlids
2 Swordtails
1 Clown Pleco
2 Dwarf Plecos

Summary of Questions:
1. Has anyone ever observed white ich-like spots on C. Loaches that is not ich?
2. Will any of my fish be particularly bothered or intolerable to a temp of 88?

Just to update it is holding steady at 87 now.
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Old 03-11-2008, 09:25 PM   #4
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If it looks like grains of salt it is ich. The fish may be uncomfortable but they will be fine with the extra aeration. It speeds up their metabolism but nothing life threatening for 2-3 weeks.
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Old 03-12-2008, 01:38 AM   #5
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I think 88F will be fine for the treatment period. The swordtails and plecos might be the most uncomfortable, but it won't kill them. I believe ich dies off above 87F. You'll need to keep it up long enough to cover all the ich lifecycles.
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Old 03-12-2008, 10:04 AM   #6
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Thanks for the responses. Unfortunately it did dip down to 86 from 87.75 last night. Here is an updated situation.

Fish:
The Ich has not spread, and the only loach I was able to lay eyes on yesterday did not have any white spots, so the ones with the spots were in their tubes.

Temp:
I've been keeping a log, and yesterday it slowly rose throughout the day two degrees to stop at 87.75 last night (perfect!). I added another heater, so there are three heaters, the main, a much smaller whisper heater (prob 50w) I have setup in the sump, and a decent sized whisper (150w) I added two days ago. Before I went to bed, and right when it was almost at 88, I (ever so slightly) turned the knob on the 150w counter-clockwise until the orange light went off. Even still, with all three heaters, it still droped a degree and a half.

I've come to realize that the combo of turning the lights off and turning my thermostat down 10deg. at night is what has been causing the nightly dips. So three heaters should fix this. I'm finally able to keep the temp. fluctuations between 86 and 88 so I'm definitely narrowing the settings down.

Again I "think" the loaches have ich, but it really was only 2 or 3 white specs and it has not spread to other fish or spread on the loaches themselves. I can't be 100% b/c I only see 2 at a time. Might these white specs be somehting else b/c there are so few? Probably not, just wishful thinking I guess. Thanks for the help.
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Old 03-12-2008, 09:25 PM   #7
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It sounds like ich. The ich can be in the gills of the fish and not visible to the eye. Keeping the temps up is a necessary precaution IMO.
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