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View Full Version : HELP Salt & Pleco Advice!!!!



jessfish
02-18-2011, 12:55 AM
I posted this is my pleco 'fish surgry' post but got nothing...not a prob i'll make it its own thread!

I have a question about aquarium salt & plecos!!!!!

Peru (my 8in pleco) is still doing great! He's eaing ALOT!!! & much faster than hes been able to in months!

The spot where the growth came off is still looking red, but today it looks a little bit swollen. I have antibiotics (Maracyn) but i think thats a bit over kill & i'm not convinced he needs anything that strong. Also his behaviour is pretty much the same as always - not as active but still eating & moving around the tank

I have aquarium salt that says it adds essential electrolytes, improves gill function, & promotes disease recovery.
His gills are working fine, he doesn't have a specific disease...but im sure the electrolytes in the salt can't hurt.

Is putting some of this salt in with a pleco ok (i've read its ok & most will tolerate it)
Or should i just keep doing what im doing (small water changes everyday to get the poop out & keep the water clean & feeding - plus the water conditioner i have has aloe in it)
I don't want to do too much & cause problems that are not there - but if there is a small infection (which is hard for me to tell) i want to treat it before it becomes a big problem.

thanks!!!

jessfish
02-18-2011, 01:07 AM
BTW he's a leopard sailfin (gibbiceps) pleco...not sure it that matters when it comes to salt

CassieLEO
02-18-2011, 10:30 AM
I would start with 1 Tsp to every ten gallons of water. I had to do this when a Pleco I had that must have scratched himself on something in my tank and it helped him heal up pretty quick. That should help you. Just make sure you dont have any fish that are sensitive to the salt. (scaleless fish such as Corys and some Tetras are)

jessfish
02-18-2011, 05:03 PM
ok i think i might put the salt in today, i have a feeling though that the two small little nodules i couldn't get tied off are what im seeing & the salt might not help...but at the same time i've never tried salt so it could really do something good...

any signs i should look for if hes irritated by the salt? will he scratch or do anythig specific?

CassieLEO
02-18-2011, 07:45 PM
Yeah I believe he will if it bothers him. I used a much higher concentration than I told you and I think I overdid it once, so I removed like 80% of the water freaking out. Less is more LOL!

Lady Hobbs
02-18-2011, 08:07 PM
The salt used for therapeutic reasons is not like they are in a brackish or saltwater tank. The amount of salt for health reasons is minimal and doesn't make the tank salty at all.

jessfish
02-18-2011, 08:08 PM
Less is more LOL!

yeah bc im not sure it will even do anything i put 2 dissolved teaspoons in 20g tank LOL

maybe not enough..but if it starts to help than i'll add a small bit more tomorrow..

is the general idea with adding salt to add more everyday? (i have to do 10-15% water change daily from the poop anyway)

i've used salt to treat ich before..but i didnt have a pleco when i did that

jessfish
02-18-2011, 08:12 PM
OMG holy sH** this could be working really really well....& could also be something i should have tried months ago!!!!!!!!!!

i just took a peek & the redness (or blood) that was in the two small nodules is GONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


yay aquarium salt!

maybe the nodules will disapear too


Peru could be back in the main tank tomorrow...or sunday YAY:19:

CassieLEO
02-18-2011, 08:42 PM
YAY FOR PERU!!!!!!!!!!!! :D Glad hes doing ok!!!!!

jessfish
02-18-2011, 09:23 PM
Since i don't know what the remaining growth is....do i continue with salt for a few days...or if he's looking good tomorrow put him back in main tank?

Don't want to over salt him...LOL

CassieLEO
02-18-2011, 10:11 PM
Honestly if he is looking good and healthy, you should let him go another day or two then put him back in the tank and he should be fine :) Im so glad that he is ok, I love Peru, especially since seeing him Dancing around with the goldfish!!! :)

jessfish
02-18-2011, 11:13 PM
LOL thanks! I can't wait to see him dancing around with them again either!! i'll have to post a celebratory video! funny enough in this tank he only dances at night when the tank light is off & the living room is pretty dark!

I think i'll give him another day, i think hes getting stressed in the 20gal - not just from its size (which i dont think is bothering him) but he gets scared whenever someone or a dog or cat walk by the tank (he changes his colour & tries to blend in) but theres nothing to blend into - plus he doesnt like the cave which i get - its white & not dark so prob doesnt offer much 'safety' for him.
I do put a towel across the tank & that helps with the distractions that seem to freak him out lol

dbosman
02-19-2011, 01:11 AM
Please start water changes to remove the salt.
Plecos are black water fish, not brackish.

Get some blackwater extract or make your own from peat moss or hardwood leaves. The tanins will help promote your pleco's health and keep down bacteria.

CassieLEO
02-19-2011, 01:15 AM
dbosman, I dont know where you got brackish water from aquarium salt, but they are two different things. You need to research the stuff that you dont know about and not give people bad information. If she adds aquarium salt to the tank, it doesnt turn it brackish, its not even the right kind of salt. Please make sure you research stuff before giving out advice.

jessfish
02-19-2011, 01:34 AM
Please start water changes to remove the salt.
Plecos are black water fish, not brackish. Get some blackwater extract or make your own from peat moss or hardwood leaves. The tanins will help promote your pleco's health and keep down bacteria.


dbosman, I dont know where you got brackish water from aquarium salt, but they are two different things.

Luckily someone mentioned the difference to me today...dbosman that post would have sent me into a panic! thanks cassie for reminding about the diff between the two...i had no idea they were diff things before today either!

jessfish
02-19-2011, 01:40 AM
Is it possible to over feed a pleco?

I give Peru a small chuck of zucchini (maybe 1.5-2in long & .5in thick) a day or every other day (i found feeding this often kept him from beeing a total ass to the goldies when they check out his food! LOL)

but since his 'surgery' he's been easily finishing that size chunck of zucchini in about 5hrs...used to take 12+hrs

the last 2 days i've given him 2 chucks a day (morning & night) & theres nothing left by the morning.

Can they be over fed?

(btw he has spurts where he eats a lot for a week than almost nothing for a few days & he fasts onc day a week - mostly out of habit since the goldies dont eat once a week)

CassieLEO
02-19-2011, 04:33 AM
Nah, hes prolly just recovering from the surgery and eating a lot to heal himself. Or eating out of boredom. He will be better once he is with his friends again. You can tell he was one happy guy in that tank with the Goldies!!!

Lady Hobbs
02-19-2011, 12:50 PM
This reminds me of telling you of that angel I had once with that huge lump hanging out the gill and after using salt for 3 days the lump was gone. Strange.

A therapeutic dose is 1 T. per 5 gallons and you are not even near that dosage. Glad he is doing so well and can be back to his own diggs very soon. Before all these medications flooded the market, salt is all anyone ever used and was the only thing old timers used.

dbosman
02-19-2011, 05:33 PM
dbosman, I dont know where you got brackish water from aquarium salt, but they are two different things. You need to research the stuff that you dont know about and not give people bad information. If she adds aquarium salt to the tank, it doesnt turn it brackish, its not even the right kind of salt. Please make sure you research stuff before giving out advice.


Plecos are from freshwater rivers and streams.
They encounter no aquarium salt in their natural environment. They encounter very low concentrations of salts of any kind.
Salt is not a needed or desired chemical for plecos. By putting salt in the water you are forcing the plecos renal system to work harder to excrete the salt.

Is salt safe for a treatment? Yes
Is salt safe for long term health of plecos? No
Can plecos tolerate salt short term? Yes
Can plecos tolerate salt long term? Until their renal system fails.
Can plecos thrive in salty water? No
Tolerate and thrive are different words and worlds apart.

I included the comment about black water not being related to brackish as too many people confuse the two terms, to the detriment of their fish.

CassieLEO
02-19-2011, 05:46 PM
I think since she was talking about a fish in a quarantine tank and adding the fish back into his original tank. Its not like she is putting the salt in there on a permanent basis. It is perfectly safe to put that much salt into a quarantine tank to treat a sick fish, people have been doing it for years and years as Lady Hobbs mentioned. In fact, the dosage I told her to put in was a extremely low dose of aquarium salt. No one said long term. You made it seem like she was going to kill her fish for using theraputic aquarium salt for 2 days.

As for the black water comment, where that came from, I have no idea as this no where near applies to this conversation. Thats just adding information to add it. Which is good, but has absolutely nothing to do with the conversation at hand. We are talking about a quarantine tank and you are talking about using peat and leaves for two days, which wouldnt make it full-on black water in that short of time and not really worth it for two days treatment. This is for a 20 gallon sick tank, not a permanent residence for him. He will be going back in with goldfish, which while im not Jess, but im pretty sure she wont want to turn the water into black water for the goldfish and him too. Just sayin'.

jessfish
02-19-2011, 06:25 PM
while im not Jess, but im pretty sure she wont want to turn the water into black water for the goldfish and him too. Just sayin'.

Yup! No thanks to the black water...im assuming since i know nothing about black water that its just dirty & where some fish live?

However with Peru he was having a pretty stressed day where he seemed to be in what i call 'scared/camouflage' mode he was still in this way this morning I figured as much as he seemed fine in the 20gal the tank was only 5in off the ground so everytime something or someone walked by he got freaked out & without a proper cave to hide in he was ready to go back to his regualr home....pluse the fact that even after covering the tank with a towel (which i've been doing) after hrs I would peek & he was still 'camo' fish!

Time to go home!!!!!!!!!!!

Pic's of 'camo fish' & Peru...upset about being bagged

** the bag looks really small but despite what he thought there was room for him to turn around & lots of air...didn't stop him from trying to beat the bag up for 30 min!

jessfish
02-19-2011, 06:30 PM
& He's HOME!!!!

I'll post this in the 'fish surgery' sticky so there will be a cute little happy ending...but this post is being used more...so here are the videos!

1st video is after 30 min in the bag (the tanks were a degree diff in temp I didnt want to just toss him in) he spent the ENTIRE 30 min trying to eat/smash his way out of the bag...so when he was set free he swam behind a plant & took a few seconds but did this...makes my heart want to explode with happiness & makes me giggle too :1luvu:

vEcvjsX-W1E


After a few hrs he was back to 'normal' - I swear if its possible for a fish to smile...Peru does it! I'm stil trying to get a pic of that!

PvHaIE4VmsA

CassieLEO
02-19-2011, 06:44 PM
Awwww!!!! He looks so happy to be back!!!!!:1luvu: :1luvu: :1luvu: