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Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. Default Really drawn-out illness (Columnaris?)

    0 Not allowed!
    I've only had my two keyhole cichlids about six months now, but for the last 3 or 4 months my female has been acting strange and ill. She spends most of her time under the filter output looking stressed. I had noticed her head looked oddly (but mildly) pale, and I thought I could see some whiteish scum showing from under her scales, but research turned up no definite diagnoses, and I thought I was imagining it. Slowly I've started noticing her symptoms getting worse and some are showing up in the male. I thought I noticed some yellow around their heads and I thought it might be lesions from columnaris, but yellow is also part of their natural colouration so I wasn't sure. Also every source I've seen says columnaris kills within a few days. It has been MONTHS. Then I noticed a small fuzzy white spot on the female's face, but it cleared up. Then I noticed one on the male, and it's been there on and off. Now I'm seeing brown blotches on the female and male's faces. I KNOW that's not natural colouration. Today I noticed the male scratching his head on the sand and driftwood.

    Does this sound familiar to anyone?


    3 small brown spots on the male's lower face. (The female is too stressed and skittish for photos.)

  2. #2


    3 Not allowed!
    Sounds a lot like fungal or opportunistic bacterial infection. Columnaris would have spread fast and aggressively.

    What is your maintenance schedule and what are your basic water parameters? The Cyanobacteria on your gravel suggests your water might have a higher amount of dissolved organics, which could certainly lead to the problems you are experiencing.

  3. #3


    2 Not allowed!
    I tend to agree with mada. Sounds more like fungus and that cyano on your substrate is a sign something is off in your tank.
    Increasing your biodiversity increases your stability.

    You know what this tank needs? ........................ Crypts.

  4. #4


    1 Not allowed!
    I agree with the above. Unless you can identify the real cause I'd not like to suggest any specific treatments - this can make matters worse if you start treating for things randomly without knowing the true cause. This is especially the case if experimenting with treatments that can be quite hard on the fish.

    If it were my tank I think I would attempt to eradicate the cynobacteria as this is a confirmed ID (and an issue that should be addressed) and do large daily water changes whilst monitoring the fishes' appearance and behaviour. The only thing you might consider is to very gradually introduce some aquarium salt to your water changes as this can help supportive measures during illness and curb any further bacterial hold in an already weak fish. Do read up on amounts to introduce though and please do be aware of "salt creep". It can be a real killer if you're not aware of it or have a refractometer.

    Good luck - I'd be interested to hear how this pans out.
    "Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known." Carl Sagan

    ~ 350 Litre Tank Journal ~ ~ 30 Litre Tank Journal ~

  5. #5


    0 Not allowed!
    Mada asked you what your maintenance schedule and water parameters were. I'd like to add a few more questions. What is your feeding regiment? Do they eat all you give them or is there food left over and how much? If so do you remove the excess food right away or just get it during your next water change?
    Increasing your biodiversity increases your stability.

    You know what this tank needs? ........................ Crypts.

  6. #6


    0 Not allowed!
    I would be concerned with that green algae on the bottom of the tank. That is not an algae actually but a bacteria called Cyanobacteria. It's poisonous to fish and your fish may be picking at it. An antibiotic will kill it and will probably help the fish, as well. It will also kill your cycle so you will have to be careful for awhile and watch that cycle. Remove any charcoal if you use it.

    Vac up as much as you can and personally, I would treat the tank with Maracyn 2. It's not cheap but it's good stuff.
    Last edited by Lady Hobbs; 08-13-2014 at 03:14 PM.

  7. #7


    0 Not allowed!
    Also, keep your phosphates in check and do your regular water changes and reduce light period.

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