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Old 03-18-2023, 08:29 PM   #1
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Exclamation Help with Green Sunfish Diagnosis!

Hello! I have had this tank for about a year with my Green Sunfish, a pleco, and recently a feeder goldfish that the Sunfish (Tim) kept as a friend, that is until about a month ago when the goldfish passed from what a believe was dropsy. The goldish showed classic symptoms, and was quartained and treated but died despite... Any how!

My Green Sunfish had a lump appear about a week ago, it's to the right and a little over his ear, similar to a temple. And yesterday I noticed the scales around it starting to lift and looking a little bloody. I love this fish a whole lot!!!!!! I'm very concerned it might be dropsy, but since the lump has not grown and isn't necessarily near hi stomach or abdomen, I'm not sure how to treat or go forward. He is very tough and about 5-6" long, because of his size and my love for him, I'm very hesitant to treat him with any medication if this is NOT dropsy.

Please help me diagnose this bump!!!
(I added a link to a YouTube video because it is very difficult to take a still image of it, and he doesn't particularly want to show me that side.)

Thank yall!

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Old 03-19-2023, 12:14 PM   #2
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Dropsy is an abdominal issue so the pineconing of the shoulder area is not from " dropsy". It may be from an internal parasite/ worm making it's way out of the body or a parasite trying to make it's way into the body. Since you say you've had this fish for at least a year, unless you recently added other fish or livestock ( plants, snails, etc) that could have brought a parasite into the tank with them, it's probably not a new parasite getting in but one getting out. There are a couple of ways of dealing with this: 1) place the fish in a bare bottom tank so that when the parasite/worm leaves, you will see it on the tank bottom. At that point, siphon out the " intruder(s), make sure the water is clean, add some aquarium salt to the tank to help the wound heal then return the fish to it's main tank once the wound has healed. 2) is a more drastic and potentially dangerous method. It requires the use of Dylox in a clean aquarium with no snails or other invertebrates and a Ph of 7.2- 7.4 and a KH of at least 50 PPM. You'll want to measure the exact water amount in the aquarium as the med's treatment is based on net gallons. This can be found here: https://www.americanaquariumproducts...s.html#dyacide Follow the manufacturer's directions.

Unfortunately, when you bring in fish that normally live in open ponds or waterways, they are bound to have parasites or other " nasties" in them. They may be harmless things that use the fish as an intermediate host or they can be more dangerous. You just don't know what is inside of them. The same applies to things like the plants and snails. Snails are known intermediate hosts of many parasites. You have to be very careful with them.
Hope this helps.
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Old 03-19-2023, 01:55 PM   #3
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Hi and welcome to the forum

It could be an external bacterial or protozoan infection causing the scales to lift. You can try salt and see if it helps. If it doesn't then we need to investigate further.


You can add rock salt (often sold as aquarium salt), swimming pool salt, or any non iodised salt (sodium chloride) to the aquarium at the dose rate of 1 heaped tablespoon per 20 litres of water. If there is no improvement after 48 hours you can double that dose rate so there is 2 heaped tablespoons of salt per 20 litres.

Keep the salt level like this for at least 2 weeks but no longer than 4 weeks otherwise kidney damage can occur. Kidney damage is more likely to occur in fish from soft water (tetras, Corydoras, angelfish, Bettas & gouramis, loaches) that are exposed to high levels of salt for an extended period of time, and is not an issue with livebearers, rainbowfish or other salt tolerant species.

The salt will not affect the beneficial filter bacteria but the higher dose rate (4 heaped tablespoons per 20 litres) will affect some plants and some snails. The lower dose rate (1-2 heaped tablespoons per 20 litres) will not affect fish, plants, shrimp or snails.

After you use salt and the fish have recovered, you do a 10% water change each day for a week using only fresh water that has been dechlorinated. Then do a 20% water change each day for a week. Then you can do bigger water changes after that. This dilutes the salt out of the tank slowly so it doesn't harm the fish.

If you do water changes while using salt, you need to treat the new water with salt before adding it to the tank. This will keep the salt level stable in the tank and minimise stress on the fish.

When you first add salt, add the salt to a small bucket of tank water and dissolve the salt. Then slowly pour the salt water into the tank near the filter outlet. Add the salt over a couple of minutes.
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fish, green

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