View Full Version : Pale lethargic Marboro Red

01-19-2009, 01:59 AM
It was my birthday on Saturday which was a good start to the weekend - especially seeing as I wasn't at work and could celebrate it in style.

Unfortunately, falling through the ceiling (whilst trying to put the Christmas decorations in the loft) and then finding out my little Marlboro Red was looking quite sorry for himself, put an end to my celebrations ...

I've moved him to my hospital tank and used a broad spectrum medication for parasites, ich and that kind of stuff. Added some Melafix and also a worming/gill fluke tablet as well. He isn't eating and I've not noticed that he was getting bullied - and the other 5 discus have been with him since day one. I've changed the water every week and all other fish are fine and all the tests have come back okay with regards to the water.

I've had him for two years now and apart from bing very pale there are no other outward signs of infection or disease. I think I have covered everything but was wondering if anyone had any other advice or can see anything I've missed?

Thanks in advance ...

Lady Hobbs
01-19-2009, 02:02 AM
Could it be just the stress of the bullying. I wonder if he is afraid to eat. Might be the others attack him when he tries so he shys away from even trying now.

01-19-2009, 02:09 AM
... so he'll pick up now purely because I've isolated him ?

01-19-2009, 02:09 AM
Skinny, have any of your Discus paired off? In particular, did that one pair off with another? If you are having trouble getting him to eat, as cruel as it sounds, add 3-4 guppy fry to his tank, he'll get something to eat.

01-19-2009, 02:16 AM
Thanks GB ... I haven't seen any pairing behaviour (as I'm not set up for discus breeding) ... though I'm not sure of all the signs. Not certain I can get any guppy fry (as my last batch have grown up now) but will something like daphnia, live bloodworms or brine shrimp trigger the same effect do you think?

01-19-2009, 02:38 AM
It may work but I know that Discus almost never turn their noses up at live Guppy Fry.

01-20-2009, 03:34 AM
I got home from work last night to discover that there was a kind of stringy white stuff floating in the QT. A little was stuck to one of his bottom fins and was also attached to the thermometer. On closer inspection it was slimy but that's about all I could say about it. He's been in the anti-fungal/fluke meds for two days now. the fluke instructions say to do a partial water change on the 2nd day which I will do tonight. As this will dilute the anti-fungal meds too do you think I should redose?

He's still showing no signs of wanting to eat and is still pale and isn't swimming much - instead prefering to hang in the back of the tank above the thermometer.

01-20-2009, 09:36 PM
Skinny -

You need to do a water change and rinse the filter out immediately. The problem here is actually the melafix. I am not sure the exact reason, but something in the melafix does not react well with the natural coating of the discus. I only know this because I had the exact same issue and it was due to using melafix to treat some beat up fins. I used a little melafix and within 24 hours my discus looked sick as dogs. What you have essentially created by using the melafix is damaging bacterial bloom. The white stringy substance you are finding is a fungus. Unfortunately when this happened to me I was unable to QT my fish and it became very expensive to treat my 75 gallon. Luckily for you, you have already seperated the fish which makes the treatment much easier to manage.

Here is what you need to do after you clean the water and rinse the filter...

Go buy maracyn & maracyn-two medications and dose your tank with both at the same time. You can get the medication at most of the large chain pet stores here in the states, I wouldn't know about australia. The brand is Mardel. If not just look for a gram-negative and a gram-positive treatment. The maracyn is an antiboitic that treats against gram-positive bacterial and fungul diseases and the maracyn-two is an antibiotic that treats gram-negative bacterial infections. Giving you a full spectrum of treatment to heal your fish.

**I noticed a change within 6 hours of the medication, and I believe it only took me about 3 days to clear the fungus. Sadly, it took my discus about 1-2 months before he was completely healed. My situation was so bad that one of my discus was permanently scar'd, so the sooner you can treat the tank the better off you are! Goodluck and feel free to private message me or email me if you need any quick answer's (spyderspy6@gmail.com)

Sorry if I'm stating the obvious, but did you remove the carbon from your filter? This will remove any medications from the water if its left in your filter.

01-21-2009, 05:44 AM
Thanks a lot for that Spyder ... I did the water change yesterday and added a little more Melafix (as I hadn't got your reply by then) and the anti-fungal meds I used previously. I will take your advice and do another water change tonight that will hopefully remove most of the existing Melafix.

I will also go to my LFS and see what meds they have that are similar to what you describe - though in the meantime I will probably redose the anti-fungal meds I already have as I can't get there until the weekend.

I don't use carbon in my filters so I'm covered there.

You've given me a lot to think about ... thanks again!

02-10-2009, 04:40 AM
Firstly apologies for originally misspelling the name of this thread - doh !!

Secondly, you're probably not as interested as me but I thought you may like to see how my discus has recovered. He's doing fine and back to his previous happy self :ssmile:

Thanks again for all the great advice, guys.

Sir Tristen
02-10-2009, 04:59 AM
What a beautiful fish! I'm glad it's doing better. I'd love to keep discus some day.

02-10-2009, 05:11 AM
Skinny that is awesome news!!! Did you end up doing what Spyder suggested? Or did the melafix work?

02-10-2009, 11:53 AM
Oh, he does look great! Glad to hear it....thumbs2:

02-10-2009, 02:46 PM
your discus is a stunner.thumbs2:

02-10-2009, 02:48 PM
I'm so pleased your discus recovered. What a happy positive ending. Nice to know that the experience of others has paid off here.


02-11-2009, 05:15 AM
Skinny that is awesome news!!! Did you end up doing what Spyder suggested? Or did the melafix work?

Thanks guys :)

I did drop the Melafix but kept up the anti-fungal meds - so not sure which did the trick in the end. I even managed to get hold of some guppy fry like ILMGB suggested and he was spot on; I've never seen one of my fish get so excited about chasing food around before. My wife didn't talk to me for the rest of the day though as she decided I was a barbarian !!

Thanks again for all your help and support - proving once again what a great place the AC is :19:

02-16-2009, 01:58 PM
Skinny -

Glad to hear everything worked out!! It's horrible losing a homie :o)