View Full Version : mysterious disease

02-19-2007, 05:22 PM

I'm at the moment giving my tiny 7 year old fish tank it's first major overhaul, it's a tiny tank, only 60 liters but it's enough for my home. I've got the 4 surviving fish that haven't died yet of old age in a small tank for the moment. Looking in it from above I'm once again reminded of a tricky question.

About two years ago something mysterious struck my collection. Only one casualty but it did leave several others invalid.

The affected fish all have a sort of Z shape when viewed from above. My cherry barbs (Puntius titteya) were most heavily affected. The zebrafish (Brachydanio rerio) also had it but not as heavily. My sole surviving White Cloud Mountain minnow has a very slight touch of it, so slight that it's only apparant now in this temporary tank.
Since then I've raised 5 or 6 generations guppies and not a single one has been affected by it. I've also kept two Garra taeniata in this tank who have never suffered from it.

Now I'm wondering if it will be safe to add new fish to the tank once I've finished setting it up. Any thoughts on that? Anyone any idea what this may be?


02-19-2007, 05:28 PM
do the fish look hunched over and curvy? its probably tuberculosis if theyre hunched.

The disease affects old fish and young ones that have health issues

Lady Hobbs
02-19-2007, 05:33 PM
I so agree with cocoa-pleco. Your fish will most likely all have to be distroyed and your tank disinfected prior to using it again. This is very contagious and also to humans so wear plastic gloves.

02-19-2007, 05:43 PM
thats right. It is sometimes transferred to humans. Humanely euthuanise and remaining fish and scrub with bleach and water 10:1, and make sure there is no bleach left if you plan on using the tank again.

02-19-2007, 06:01 PM
I've already preventively cleaned out the tank.

If it is indeed tuberculosis does anyone have any idea
- How it got there in the firs time? I didn't have any new plants, fish or fresh food in it for months before it struck.
- Why it only affected some fish? According to http://www.4qd.org/Aqua/disease/tb.html#symptoms guppies are rather susceptible and mine weren't touched. Neither were my neon tetras.

Hmm.. I do hope you people are wrong, I'd really hate having to kill my siamese suckermouth.

Any tips on humane euthanasia?

02-19-2007, 06:16 PM
i hate telling people this, but here goes.

Choose one of the following:

1. Put them in a little plastic container and put them into the freezer

2. put lots of clove oil in the tank, the oil literally makes them sleep, then flip them all into pure vodka. The vodka rips their circulatory system up, but it wont hurt them

3. you can chop them in half, but sometimes one half will stay alive for up to half an hour.


Once you have the bodies, garbage them or bury them.

02-19-2007, 06:22 PM
OK, so rapidly cooling water should do the trick humanely then. Since I have no clove oil that will probably be it then, Thanks!

Any thoughts on why some fish aren't affected at all?

02-19-2007, 06:47 PM
you get some fish that are immune.

Like, some humans have immunity of some diseases and medicines, and some mosquitoes are resistant to pesticide. Its from the "natural selection" thing by charles darwin

just stick them in a plastic container, and put em in the freezer

02-19-2007, 07:12 PM
Well.... as you can probably guess I've been reading up on it. Apparantly I've had a somewhat less common strain of the bacteria.

I've just put the three survivors in a container in my freezer. Must admit it took a bit of courage, that cherry barb has been with me a long, long time and I've grown quite fond of the twisted little fellow.

The tank is now enjoying a second soak of hot chlorinated water. Let that sit for a while before I start rinsing.

I think I'm just going to gamble and keep the siamese, I think he's immune and I also think I'm not going to risk two inconsolable kids. The sole surviving guppy (gave the rest away but this one managed to hide) will probably enjoy a few interesting days in the pond in my mother's garden.

Anybody know if snails can carry the bacteria as well?

02-19-2007, 07:15 PM
snails may.

I personally wouldnt risk it with the SAE even if he shows no symptoms.

You could get sick, and he could get new tankmates sick

02-19-2007, 07:29 PM
Hm... I'll discuss it with the wife, see what she thinks.

OK, thanks. I'm now going to head over to the other part of the forum and ask a few questions about fish species.