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Old 08-25-2006, 11:27 AM   #1
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Salt treatment

I am currently battling a bout of ich from some new fish to my estabished 55, it's been running for almost two years now. I recently added some rainbows to my tank and sure enough saw ich a couple of days later, everyone is doing well other than the ich, eating fine and getting along. Only the new fish have a couple of spots, I turned the heat up just above 86 and am letting the heat do it's thing.

However one of the rainbows (I added four) seems to either have ich more badly than the others but it looks more like velvet to me, it's scales look like they have a greyish powder over them, finer than ich spots usually are. It's not getting worse and if anything is getting better, I read that the heat treatment for ich can cure velvet, I've never had velvet before but does anyone have any experience?

They've also suggested using a 3% salt bath, does that sound about right? I've never used salt when I've treated ich before only heat. My idea is to do just the heat in my 55, because I have some cory cats in there and pull the one rainbow out into a smaller container for salt baths. What concentration of salt would you suggest and how long should I leave him in there?
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Old 08-25-2006, 06:36 PM   #2
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I've done salt baths on my golds ... not rainbows ... so read the following info with a grain of salt!

3% is the right amount for golds. How long depends on the fish. At that salt level, you need to closely watch the fish. When they first go in, they will dive to the bottom. That is normal, but if a fish appears passed out, remove to fresh water immediately. Weak fish might stand the salt bath for 30 sec or less, but the treatment will need as least a few minutes to be effective. For golds, you are supposed to wait till the fish poops (high salt will purge the fish) so you get rid of any parasites in the gut. I've gone as long as 20 minutes with my golds, although 10-15 minutes should be plenty long for a salt bath.

BTW it may be prudent to start with lower salt levels for the first bath to see how the fish reacts. At lower salt level, you need to leave the fish in longer to treat, but I think it is gentler for the fish. I started at 1% the first day for 45 minutes or so, then increase to 2% next day & finally 3% the 3rd (shorter time with higher concentrations). I noticed a major improvment even after the first bath of 1%, and the ich spots were all gone after the 3rd day. I am not sure if increasing past 1% is actually needed, but 3% was what is recommended so i went up to that level just in case there is any resistant bugs left.
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