Go Back   Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community > Freshwater > Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish
Click Here to Login

Join Aquarium Advice Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com
 
Old 10-25-2003, 12:52 AM   #1
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Decatur, IL
Posts: 11
Send a message via AIM to tastybrains
Sudden Deaths (Gourami + Guppies)

Let me start with the basics: lightly planted 29 gallon tank that has been in operation for several months and has had no deaths, or even signs of disease, until now. It contained (before the recent deaths) two ~2.5" gouramis, 5 guppies (2 male, 3 female), one male betta, and one 3" plecostomus. The water parameters are 0 ammonia/nitrite, ~20ppm nitrate (can't get it lower than this because it is high in my tap water), pH ~ 7.2, water temp 77 F.

All but the guppies have been in the tank almost since the beginning. I introduced the guppies on 10/17, and when I woke up in the morning on 10/20, one of the males was dead and stuck to the filter intake. Then yesterday evening (10/23) I found the second male swimming vertically and he died almost immediately. I was slightly alarmed at this point because I inspect my fish every day when I feed them for damaged fins, discoloration, lack of appetite, etc., and all of the fish seemed healthy less than a day before. However, I chalked it up to acclimation difficulties, since they were new fish.

But then tonight when I arrived home from work I went to the tank to give them a light feeding and my paradise gourami (Pinky) did not eat. I gave a closer look and her/his (?) fins were badly damaged and (s)he looked like she wasn't breathing and was making occasional seizure-like movements. I had fed this tank not more than six hours earlier and (s)he looked just fine! At first I thought maybe another fish had attacked, but she and the other gourami are the biggest fish in the tank, and she has always been dominant besides. (Not to mention: no damage to any of the other fish.)

It looks like there is some kind of intestinal parasite coming out of Pinky. I did notice yesterday that (s)he was blowing occasional air bubbles ... which is not completely abnormal, but they were more numerous and bigger than usual. Could that have been a warning sign?

Anyway, I am not used to losing fish -- especially not this suddenly. I have never dealt with any disease other than Ich before. I am also not necessarily convinced that what killed the guppies is the same as what killed my paradise fish. Can anyone offer a better explanation? Or, better still, treatment advice (could the rest of the tank's residents be in danger?)

I took some pictures, which are available at this address: http://tastybrains.dyndns.org/dying/dying.html

Any suggestions would be appreciated. Pinky had a really cool personality, and was by far my favorite fish.

P.S. I know it's a little late for this now, but can anyone tell me for sure what Pinky's gender was?

Thanks,

Andy
__________________

__________________
"It is not our abilities that show what we truly are: it is our choices."
-- Albus Dumbledore
tastybrains is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2003, 01:24 AM   #2
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: NY
Posts: 4,536
****. Looks like callumanus. Best treatment is levamisole which can be found in DiscoMed I believe. Look it up here for more info: http://www.fish-disease.com/diseases.htm

Hopefully Madame_X will stop in tomorrow; she just hada bout of it in her tank. I'm sure she would have some more info.
__________________

__________________
aka Cycling Guru and the Ich Slayer

*glares at Terry and QTOFFER*

Card carrying member of FTAS & GCAS.
Allivymar is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2003, 04:44 AM   #3
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Harlow, Essex. UK
Posts: 688
Send a message via ICQ to Terry Send a message via MSN to Terry
Spot on again Allivymar,

If you can see anything protruding from the anus part of the fish and they are a red-brown in colour then yes i would say Camallanus as well.
It is also more common in live bearers, but can be passed on to other tank mates. When your guppys died did they show any signs of Emaciation (sunken bellies) or deformaties.
Spot on also with the treatment Alli, and i think that Madame X is still treating so i don't know how it has gone. I'm sure she will let us know later.
__________________
" There is to much information in this hobby to learn in one lifetime "
But with the help of Aquarium Advice we can
have a good try.
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2003, 05:08 AM   #4
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Decatur, IL
Posts: 11
Send a message via AIM to tastybrains
Thank you for the tip. I would not have diagnosed the camallanus worms on my own.

Update:

Just a few minutes ago, while I was inspecting my tank in disbelief, I noticed that the male betta's left pectoral fin appears to be more-or-less paralyzed and slightly discolored (opaque/white instead of clear). Seeing this reminded me that the last male guppy also had a nonfunctional pectoral fin before he died (a fact I forgot to mention in my first note.) A google search based on this symptom led me to a hit on "columnaris" bacteria.

And now, a confession: I bought the guppies at Wal Mart. I have previously avoided them religiously based on horror stories I've read online, but the stock actually looked healthy and it happens to be much closer to my home than any reputable LFS. (Classic mistake: impulse buying). So now, I have a theory: most likely the larger inhabitants of the tank had the intestinal worms already, and the guppies introduced a bacteria into the tank which was able to bring down the paradise fish very quickly because it was already compromised by lesions in its intestine. I would love to blame Wally World for the worms as well as the bacteria, but the guppies don't show any symptoms of them, while the gouramis (which have been in the tank for 1-2 months) do.

Anyway *kicks self* the question of treatment still remains. Because it's the weekend, I will probably not be able to obtain antibiotics or levamisole either locally or by mail until monday or tuesday. Are any of the more common medications effective against either columnaris or camallanus? I have read several different sites, and they present several different recommendations for treatment. Some sites have said that praziquantel (common anti-fluke medication, which I could obtain immediately) "might" work on camallanus. Are fluke tablets benign enough for the fish that they would be worth trying? Also: some other sites say that aquarium salt alone (or in combination with copper sulfate) may be sufficient to cure columnaris. This seems questionable to me ... is this really feasible or is it just a folk remedy?

Anyhow, for the time being I did go ahead and add salt and copper sulfate to the aquarium, since I have both on hand and neither will hurt anything, whether they work or not.
__________________
"It is not our abilities that show what we truly are: it is our choices."
-- Albus Dumbledore
tastybrains is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2003, 05:37 AM   #5
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Decatur, IL
Posts: 11
Send a message via AIM to tastybrains
Terry: the guppies' only major symptom was discoloration in their abdomens. One of them had a slightly tattered caudal fin (which did not appear until he was almost dead .. same as the paradise fish), which I assume was from a secondary infection. The most frustrating thing is that all of these fish were active and eating until only hours before they died.
__________________
"It is not our abilities that show what we truly are: it is our choices."
-- Albus Dumbledore
tastybrains is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2003, 10:00 AM   #6
Aquarium Advice FINatic
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Harlow, Essex. UK
Posts: 688
Send a message via ICQ to Terry Send a message via MSN to Terry
Even though your guppys/ paradise were not deformed or emaciated i would still stick to the worm theory, if your fish had worms they would look as though they were feeding well but would not be benefiting from the food because of the worms.

I don't know if Alliymar would agree with me, but it could possible be skin slime disease were the symptoms would be whitish patches to the skin which would be an increase in body mucus. This is sometimes brought on by poor water conditions a poor diet and this in turn brings on stress.

Just a thought.
__________________
" There is to much information in this hobby to learn in one lifetime "
But with the help of Aquarium Advice we can
have a good try.
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2003, 04:51 AM   #7
Aquarium Advice Apprentice
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Decatur, IL
Posts: 11
Send a message via AIM to tastybrains
Update!!!!

The male betta's left pectoral fin is quite rotted and there is a small area of necrotic tissue around it. However: this morning I added neomycin and pipzine (they were out of discomed at the LFS, but the guy suggested that this would work, just not as rapidly. We'll see?) The surviving gourami has the worms. They are not as dramatic, but two little tendrils can be seen. I also am giving the betta ~ 2% salt baths, and he seems to be in good spirits despite his "limp".

Anyway, the important part!!! I came home from work today and the betta was vertical, dive-bombing the gravel. At first I thought he was about to die, but then a fry swam across my field of vision! One of the female guppies gave birth this evening. I only manged to find three that the betta hadn't already caught. (I love that betta -- he can hardly swim straight but he's still got an attitude. lol.)

So now I have a situation that is a bit more complicated. I put the guppies in a small makeshift (~2 gallons) container for now, with mild airation provided by an air stone. I took the water from my 10 gallon tank, which appears to be healthy and uncontaminated. However, I am not quite sure of how to give them the best chance. The fry have already been exposed to all the nasty stuff in the 29 gallon tank ... stuff that was bad enough to kill a full-grown paradise fish and cripple a betta. Should I medicate their container as well? Or should I take my chances and wait for them to get bigger before subjecting them to chemicals that might be harmful to them?

I'd be thankful for suggestions. Unless anyone says differently, I will just try to rear them as normal for now. I have never cared for fry before. I hope this doesn't end badly.
__________________
"It is not our abilities that show what we truly are: it is our choices."
-- Albus Dumbledore
tastybrains is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2003, 08:52 AM   #8
Aquarium Advice Addict
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: NY
Posts: 4,536
Urk LOL When it rains it pours eh?

The pipzine should work ok; its another deworming med and is used in humans for the same reason. And the neomycin should help as well; salt won't help with the columnaris. I don't know how it would affect the fry tho. I'd prob do the same thing; keep them isolated and just watch them. Chances are they may wind up infested, but its not definite and yeah, the older they are when treated the better.

Btw, what are the water parameters (ammonia/nitrite/nitrate)? Keep a close eye on them; theres a good chance the meds will muck up the nitrifying bacterial colonies.
__________________

__________________
aka Cycling Guru and the Ich Slayer

*glares at Terry and QTOFFER*

Card carrying member of FTAS & GCAS.
Allivymar is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
deaths, eat, gourami, guppie, guppies

Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about them on AquariumAdvice.com

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Sudden zebra danio deaths jfritz42 Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 18 10-02-2009 11:45 PM
Sudden fish deaths Dekz Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 7 08-09-2009 12:49 AM
New fish, sporadic, sudden deaths ScottS Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 8 02-26-2009 11:55 PM
Sudden Gourami Aggression theotheragentm Freshwater & Brackish - General Discussion 5 08-28-2007 06:40 PM
Sudden fish deaths Cari Freshwater & Brackish - Unhealthy Fish 7 01-23-2006 10:10 PM







» Photo Contest Winners







All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:21 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.