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debbieg 06-14-2004 08:28 PM

Parasite or Paranoia??

Why is it always the "favorite" that gets something?
My angelfish has a very small white bump near his eye. It has been there for 3 days. He has no symptoms of illness at all and is still eating like a horse. He is in an established 55 gallon tank with other angels, gouramis, silver dollars, and rainbows. None of my other fish show any signs of illness either. The water readings are great. I've been treating the entire tank with Parasite Guard since the first day that it appeared, but it hasn't gotten any smaller; but it hasn't gotten any larger either.

Please help me to confirm that the spot in the photo below is a parasite.
Should I isolate him or treat the entire tank?
What should I use for treatment?
Am I overreacting?

Thanks a bunch,

Menagerie 06-15-2004 12:40 AM

It could be a number of things: parasitic, bacterial or fungal. I would QT this fish and stop treating the entire tank.

I have two things for you to do. First look through these sites:

Second, answer these Qs to rule out water issues:
~What are your exact tank parameters (ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, temp)?
~ How large is the tank?
~How many fish are in the tank? What kinds of fish are they and what are there current sizes?
~When is the last time you did a water change and vacuum the gravel? How often do you do this? How much water do you remove at a time?
~How long have you had the fish?
~Have you added anything new to the tank--decor, new dechlor, new substrate, etc.?

debbieg 06-15-2004 03:25 PM


I'd already checked out some of the links you listed, and I just looked through the others but saw nothing that looked like my problem.

My tank is 55 gallon. It has 4 angels, two silver dollars, 2 tiger barbs, 4 rainbows, 2 sharks, 1 loach, 1 otto, 2 little frogs, and three gouramis. All of these are juveniles except for the silver dollars and Angelly, the fish with the spot.
I've had Angelly for almost a year. I did add one new fish, a small yellow rainbow, to the aquarium about a week and a half before the spot appeared. I've never fed anything but NutraFin Max and freeze dried bloodworms.

I use a python to vacuum the gravel, changing 25 to 30 percent of the water every weekend.

My water parameters are:
Temperature: 75
Ammonia: <.25
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: 40
ph level: 7.2
Hardness: 120
Alkalinity: 100

The ammonia and nitrate readings are both slightly higher than usual. I didn't clean the tank this past weekend due to treating with Parasite Guard (which hasn't done anything at all yet.)

Today my LFS recommended treating the entire tank with Copper Safe, but I've heard that this can be harmful in the long run; and I'd like a second opinion before starting something like that.

Angelly still acts like nothing is wrong.

Thanks for the help,

Essayons89 06-15-2004 05:44 PM

Has the white mark gotten any larger or has it spread at all? You already made note of the high nitrates. I would bring those down some and see if that helps if there hasn't been any change in the size or appearance of the white spot.


debbieg 06-15-2004 10:39 PM

OK, I did the 30% water change that I would have normally done this past weekend. The ammonia reading dropped to virtually nothing, and the nitrates dropped to 30. Forty is barely in the "Safe" range according to my test kit. All other test readings remained the same. I did not add any more Parasite Guard after the water change: I only added Stress Coat. There has been no change in Angelly, and none of the other fish show any signs of problems.

I am surprised by the nitrate reading. It is normally near zero. Could the Parasite Guard be affecting the test?


Essayons89 06-15-2004 10:57 PM

Hi Debbie,

I'm not familiar with Parasite Guard so I'm hesistant to comment on whether or not it could affect the test.

If you are able too, a series of water changes over the next few days should bring the nitrates back down. The white bump may go away as the nitrate falls. Just in case keep an eye out for one or more of the following:

Loss of appetite
Mouth sores
If the bump spreads.

I'm almost positive that the bump isn't a parasite. I do have a feeling that what we are looking at could be Flex. The cooler temp of the tank is good. If it is indeed flex then the low temp could be what is keeping it from spreading. Flex will spread rapidly at higher temps.

BTW, he is one gorgeous angel.


krap101 06-15-2004 11:13 PM

yeah and for parasites the pooh/feces/krap (lol) is stringy and like not likke the normal pooh fish pooh out. its not full its like something is eating bites out of it. cant explain but i heard thats for parasites 2

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