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01-16-2013, 01:22 AM #1
Neon Tetra Disease? Columnaris? Any takers?
This isn't the first time I've tried diagnosing or asked someone to help diagnosing this "disease" my fish have been getting, but I figured I'd give it another shot with some additional photos.
Here's the lowdown: The only fish that come down with this disease are my Black Phantom Tetras. I started out with 10 of them and they've been dying off one by one over the course of a few months. None of my other fish have been dying of disease, nor have any showed symptoms of the same disease.
When one of my poor little fish comes down with this stuff, the first symptom seems to be two symmetrically raised dots at the base of their tail fin, on either side.
They can last for a while like this and show no other symptoms. Then, all of a sudden (maybe a week or two later) they'll start to show signs of lethargy. They stop swimming with the other fish, they take cover either under or behind plants and hover in the same place for the remainder of their days, unless another fish gets antsy around them.
They also lose their appetite at this time. They won't touch food... not even if it drops right in front of them.
In one case, the fish was showing signs of Swim Bladder Disease, in that she couldn't keep her tail level with the rest of her body.
This is also when they start breathing more erratically and begin gasping for air.
In a few instances, there has been decay around the mouth. In two instances, fish have lost either the top part of their tail fin or the entire tail fin.
This time, the Black Phantom has a raised bump on her dorsal fin and has a white spot under her mouth (so I expect her mouth to decay like the others).
This is a better visual of the dorsal fin, but nothing else. It really brings out the bump at the base.
This is a better visual of the growth under her mouth.
I've tried treating the entire tank with salt, QTing and treating with salt, QTing and treating with Fungus Guard, QTing and treating with Coppersafe. Nothing has worked and in most cases, the stress of being moved from the main tank to the QT has killed them within a day. If left to their own devices in the main tank, they can last quite a bit longer. That being said, it will have reached the point where they're probably suffering.
It's gotten to that point, where once they start showing signs of gasping for air, and since nothing else has worked, I've decided to put them down using the freezing method.
I posted more pictures this time, in hopes that someone can figure this out. No one could, last time, and I would hope that we could nip this in the bud. Maybe it's poor breeding... and a mutation occurred as a result. I don't know... but I do know it's not happening to any of my other fish.
Let me know what you think - I'm at a loss.
Edit: Not sure if this is a symptom or not... but I've noticed through the pictures, that her gills seem to be flaring - probably because of the trouble breathing. It makes her gills look really red.
01-16-2013, 01:59 AM #2
just from the symptoms it seems like a whole range of diseases are plaguing your phantom tetras. I see you have been treating against fungus and parasites, but haven't tried antibiotics yet. maybe time to give that a try? my theory is that you may have started out with poor stock, allowing opportunistic infections that would not normally affect healthy fish (the rest of your tank) to manifest themselves.
01-16-2013, 02:15 AM #3
I'd have to agree with Madagascariensis that it might be time to quarantine them and treat with Maracyn 2. (Not regular Maracyn but the 2.) That treats gram negative bacterial infections.
Neon Tetra Disease is only spread by the dying of one that is affected and others eating from the body. I would get those fish away from your other stock nonetheless. He looks like he almost is bleeding internally.
01-16-2013, 03:09 AM #4
Thanks guys. I assumed it would be Neon Tetra Disease, because one of the offsets of the disease is the development of cysts and difficulty tin swimming. Those were two of the most common developments in these deaths. The other relation is that NTD can offset secondary infections, which I've noticed... and not every one has developed the same secondary infection. It's completely random...
I only have two Black Phantoms left and I fully expect the last one to come down with this disease... it's probably already infected - just taking more time to fully develop.
I'll head over to Petsmart and get some Maracyn 2 tomorrow. I'll try that and see how it goes. I'd love to be able to flesh out what this is, so I can be prepared for it in the future. Two more trials, I presume... to figure it out. =/ I hope to God that it doesn't spread to the other fish, once the Black Phantoms are gone.
I guess I should QT them both, even though the other one doesn't show signs?
01-16-2013, 08:55 PM #5
I picked up Maracyn 2 at lunch and will administer it when I get home in a QT tank. I'm probably just going to put both BP Tetras in there and hope that I can cure them both in one shot - taking a precautionary measure, since the 2nd one isn't showing signs yet.
The instructions say to add two packets the first day, then one packet every day for 5 days after that for a 10gal tank.
Do you think I should cut the dose in half, since we're talking Black Phantom Tetras and only 2 of them?
01-16-2013, 09:56 PM #6
With fish medications you are essentially treating the water. Whether you have two or ten fish will not significantly change the concentration of medications in the water.
01-16-2013, 10:02 PM #7
01-17-2013, 12:46 AM #8
Maracyn 2, like all antibiotics, will probably kill your beneficial bacteria so it's good you will be using a small tank for treatment. It's too bad antibiotics are so expensive. The cure is more expensive than the darned fish. I hope they aren't too far gone. The appearance of blood under their skin is troublesome.
01-17-2013, 02:56 AM #9
Tell me about it. Buying one box of 8 packets (which is pretty much the entire dosing regimen) cost about $8. I bought the Tetras at about $2/ea.
I put both of them in the tank at around 7pm. So far, so good. I noticed that the one with symptoms took to the tank pretty well and adapted rather quickly. She was wandering around the QT and seems pretty comfortable. The one without symptoms was a tad stressed. Could be that it was due to my chasing her around the big tank for a while with a net. haha
Now they're both resting near each other. It's probably best that I put both of them in there, so they have company. I think taking them away from their school (they've adopted the Serpae's school) is probably pretty traumatic. They also both have complete control over their swimming at the moment.
The outlook seems positive. I have higher expectations/hopes than normal. Wish I tried Maracyn 2 before now. Could probably have saved more fish. =/ I just wasn't sure what the heck I was dealing with.
01-17-2013, 04:31 AM #10
Regular Maracyn is for gram positive bacteria's and Maracyn 2 is for gram negative's. Most of the illness we see in our fish are due to the gram negative's with gram positives more rare.
When I saw your fish, my thoughts turned to hemorrhagic septicemia. You might want to search it some and see if it sounds like a possibility.