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Old 06-22-2004, 11:13 AM   #1
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QA with pale patches.

I have a full grown QA Pleco and recently he has gotten a couple patches where the color is much paler than the rest. He acts normal and is eating. The water is pretty much perfect with weekly water changes. Is he just getting old? Or is his sick.
I did see at a different lfs a QA that was the color of the patches of mine but the whole body was that way.
I know color changes can mean some thing is wrong, I just don't know what. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 06-22-2004, 11:47 AM   #2
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Do these color changes happen at "stressful" times? like feeding time or water changing time? These could be signs of stress. Also, plecos sometimes change the shade of their color to try and blend into their surroundings. Does the color change happen when he is on the glass and then goes to the grave, or vice versa?

Also, what does his diet consist of?
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Old 06-22-2004, 12:09 PM   #3
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The patches do not change. They stay where they are and have not changed size as of yet and are there all of the time. This is what I have seen. I don't see him to much so I can not say this with 100% certainty.

He is on a diet of Hilari algae wafers, sinking shrimp pellets, and I once in a while sink cucumber. But I don't know if he eats that or some one else does. Then I am sure he might get a smigen of any left overs which are Bio- blend tropical fish food and feeze dried bloodworms.
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Old 07-28-2004, 12:00 PM   #4
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update?

Well, he is still with us but the pale spots have grown into each other. I would say 45% of his body is paler now. Does any one have any ideas?
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Old 07-28-2004, 12:03 PM   #5
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Try PMing madasafish since he keeps numerous plecs and see if he has had this experience.
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Old 07-28-2004, 03:59 PM   #6
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Just a few questions:

How big is the pleco?

How long have you had him?

When was the last water change, how much?

Does he have a white belly or a marbled one?

Tank temp?

Did you check for nitrates?

Any recent medications or additives added to the tank?

Is he still eating?

The QA pleco is a very hard pleco to keep. Most people I know have told me that because they are wild caught they don’t do well in most aquariums. Most die within a few months. They like super clean and highly oxygenated water with lots of current. So far every thing you’re doing seems fine, good diet and frequent water changes. Loss of color does kind of sound like a bacterial infection. How long has be been losing his color?
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Old 07-28-2004, 04:56 PM   #7
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http://www.aquariumadvice.com/download.php?id=5853 Is the last picture i was able to take of him.

-How big is the pleco?
He is between four and five inches.

-How long have you had him?
I got him on March 25 of this year.

-When was the last water change, how much?
I change about 35% of the water every monday.

- Does he have a white belly or a marbled one?
Marbled.

-Tank temp?
76

-Did you check for nitrates?
Once or twice a month, I have barbs with hims as well so I watch because of them.

-Any recent medications or additives added to the tank?
Never medicated that tank, I only add clorine remover and plant ferts at every water change.

-Is he still eating?
I really don't know, to be honest I am not sure if I have ever seen him eat. I feed him at lights out. He shares his home with a small zebra pleco and five albino tiger barbs.

The tank set up is in my gallery. The plants have grown in a lot since the picture though.

And last but not least today I noticed that his belly is slightly extend, should I Qt him now and medicate and feed more vegies.
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Old 07-28-2004, 06:16 PM   #8
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I can’t think of anything that you might be doing wrong. He is at his max size, but unless you grew him from a fry it’s almost impossible to say how old he is. They can live 10 years. Were there any changes at all that occurred, new fish, changes in lighting patters or recent treats that you can also think off. Most QA plecos are nice and black with white marbling, but I have seen a few light gray QA plecos before. My only suggestion would be to do a water change, 35%, but don’t add the ferts. Feed him a little earlier than normal and come back after lights out to see if he is eating. Eating is a good sign. He may have a bacterial infection, but I don’t know the signs in a pleco so I wouldn’t recommend any meds at this time.

A couple more questions:

Is he swimming in an irregular manner?

Has he stop hiding, lying around in the open?

Are his gills red?

Is he breathing heavy?

Here’s a little know tip; try and introduce some garlic to the tank, it supposed to drive pleocs nuts. Some people use powder, some use crushed cloves. I usually boil some zucchini with some garlic. It’s supposed to help make them feel better too.

By the way if you answer yes to the top two questions it usually a sign he’s only got a few more days left. Top three sign you pleco is going to pass on are swimming in an irregular manner, stop hiding, lying around in the open, color might be more brilliant or faded.
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Old 07-28-2004, 07:58 PM   #9
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I did an extra water change earlier today. After reading your post I just mixed up a patch of peas and garlic,( I am out of any squash, Note to self buy some tomorrow.) I will feed him it when it is cooled off. And see how that goes.

As for the questions,
No he is swimming normal. He is not out in the open but has moved from his super hidden dayhome to the first place he lived in the tank before I made him a better hiding place. It is not in the open but more so than the other.

No red gills, and breathing is normal.

I hate to think that he is at the end of his life, just hope that he enjoyed being here. I will post back how this new food goes.
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Old 07-28-2004, 08:36 PM   #10
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QT him and then you will know if he is eating.
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Old 07-30-2004, 10:31 AM   #11
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How's he doing now?
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Old 07-30-2004, 10:34 AM   #12
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Same except his belly is looking really big. I sat watching him for a long while yesterday and noticed his waste was white and stringy. I am setting up the Qt right now.
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Old 07-30-2004, 11:16 AM   #13
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Ok, he is all set up in the qt tank. What medications do you think will help him the most? If there is any help to be had.
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Old 07-30-2004, 11:45 AM   #14
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I just up loaded a picture to my gallery taken this morning. (when it goes though) You can not see the extended belly but you can get an idea of the color changing that is happening.
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Old 07-30-2004, 12:48 PM   #15
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I saw the pic Try a kanamycin based med, which will treat for fungal and bacterial diseases. I have Seachem's KanaPlex and it helped save my pleco when it was suffering from septicemia. Some of the kanamycin meds can be mixed with food (ours wasn't eating, so we didn't try it).
Good luck with the pleco. I will be gone for a couple of days camping and will check in when I return.
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Old 07-30-2004, 01:36 PM   #16
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I'd say the color change is as a result of stress due to an internal bacterial infection or constipation. Do some research on the net and treat appropriately.

Here's a good link I found on goldfish, it has some good information especially the link on [Poop Diagnosis]

http://www.goldfishinfo.com/ailment1.htm#constipation

http://puregold.aquaria.net/pg/disea...gnosis_by_poop

I hope this helps.
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Old 07-30-2004, 02:57 PM   #17
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Oh also increase the tank temp to 80 degs. F.
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Old 08-02-2004, 10:06 AM   #18
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Just an update.

He looks very comfortable in his ten gallon studio apartment I have it under a stand so the lights are dim all day then pitch black at night. I change around 20% of the water every day, I think that I am going to stick with the highest water quality that I can achieve, before I resort to any medication. And we will see where to go from there.

Thank you all for you time and helping try to figure out whats going on with my big guy. I think this was all a ploy for him to get a vacation.
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