Bacterial infections

Nicole1969

HI all , recently moved to the bush an now on tank water and I am having major problems with bacterial infections that keep re-appearing , have lost half my fish ...
Could these infections be from tank water ? And what should I do to rectify any problems in the water before I top my tank up ?
Have been using bio-tet tablets but would like to know if its a common problem with tank water ?
 

Sarcasm Included

The bacteria will live in the substrate, filter, and in the water column. It will also be on any decorations, nets, and even your hands. I would need to know which bacteria infection that you are effected to give you the best direction, but you can move the fish out of the infected tank, into a hospital tank treat them with gram positive and negative antibiotics and/or Methylene blue baths until they are clear for 10 days. While treating the fish, break down the infected tank, thoroughly clean the filter and tank with bleach. Thoroughly, clean out the bleach before refilling. I suggest you throwing out the substrate and replacing it but you can just bleach it as well.

Or

you can tell me what bacteria infection you are looking at and we can see if we can avoid some of this. Some infections though you will have to do this.
 

jdhef

Welcome to FishLore! I hope you find the site helpful. It looks like you already got some good advice
 

Nicole1969

Thanks , I have no idea of what type of infection it is , I have used antI bacterial solutions an tablets which cleared it up ..but I can tell you my fish developed sores , and these sores /raw patches grew from a dot at 1pm by 3pm it was the size of a five cent piece ..
My water comes from rain water out of a cement tank ,
Really depressed bout this as I lost most of my fish but , one of my little friends I had for 8 years


 

Nicole1969

Thanks JDHef , what an amazing app, very informative , great to be here ..


 

Rivieraneo

HI Nicole, welcome to the forum, have you tested your water sources PH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate ? To me it sounds like your water may be acidic.
 

fishingdeep

Welcome to FishLore! I hope you find the site helpful. It looks like you already got some good advice
I can't see any water test results. Can you share them? I think most of us use API for our results so that would help us help you.
 

Nicole1969

I tested my water the ph is low , very low .. But everything else is within its acceptable range




I tested yesterday before I put the antibacterial tablets Bio -tet in my tank , which is now a dirty colour since adding it ...


 

Rivieraneo

I tested my water the ph is low , very low .. But everything else is within its acceptable range





I tested yesterday before I put the antibacterial tablets Bio -tet in my tank , which is now a dirty colour since adding it ...

Nicole, what was the numerical PH result of your test ? PH below 6.0 can start striping the slime coat off your fish and burns to their scales, cuticle and dermis.
 

Nicole1969

HI , I use the API test and my PH is 6.0 but I feel that it is way way lower comparing the test sample to the colour chart ... In 8 yrs I have had my tank I've never had a problem until I moved address an started using tank water ( which I thought would be a lot better than town water ) .
What is best to use to up the PH ?
Ph up ? Rock salt ? Or other source ?


 

poeticinjustices

HI , I use the API test and my PH is 6.0 but I feel that it is way way lower comparing the test sample to the colour chart ... In 8 yrs I have had my tank I've never had a problem until I moved address an started using tank water ( which I thought would be a lot better than town water ) .
What is best to use to up the PH ?
Ph up ? Rock salt ? Or other source ?


Steer clear of products like pH Up. These modifiers can cause swings in pH which can be very deadly.

As far as upping pH, I've done some research on this. Crushed coral in a media bag stuffed into the filter box is often recommended. I've also learned a lot about pH buffers such as SeaChem Alkaline (I think that's what it's called). It would take some experimenting to get the pH where you want it but these methods are much safer than pH Up. I have a link somewhere on cheap ways to raise pH.

EDIT: Wasn't the one I was looking for, but this one will do too.

 

junebug

Alkaline buffer mainly changes kH, but will affect pH as well. Seachem also makes a GH buffer to stabilize your tank.

If you really want to raise your pH, one of those buffers will work, or crushed coral, or aragonite - there are any number of ways to safely raise your pH without resorting to funky chemicals like pH Up or Down. Even "Perfect pH" causes mass pH swings*
 

Nicole1969

HI all thank you all for your help .. I have found the problem and its my rain water tanks which my ph read 4.3 ,




A neighbour bought his ph meter over an tested my water source ..pretty low at 4.3 then tested my fish tank which read 2.3 ..
Taking immediate action


 

Rivieraneo

Wow! That is very acidic, good job taking action immediately, also check your plumbing as low PH can eat at metal pipes and cause metals to enter the water column.
 

ryanr

HI all thank you all for your help .. I have found the problem and its my rain water tanks which my ph read 4.3 ,

A neighbour bought his ph meter over an tested my water source ..pretty low at 4.3 then tested my fish tank which read 2.3 ..
Taking immediate action

A pH around 4 is about where Orange Juice sits. Vinegar and lemon juice is about pH 3 and around 2 is battery and stomach acids.
Adult fish will die around ph 3-4, not just be ill, but actually pass, at 2.3, I would expect your fish would no longer be with us...

Too, the pH scale is logarithmic, meaning that each number is 10x more than the previous, thus 2.3 vs 4.3 suggests that your tank is 100x more acidic than the source water

Have you tasted your rain water? Yes, tasted, as in swallowed. It would pretty quickly verify the acidity of your rain water.
 

Nicole1969

HI my rain water tank tastes normal minus the chemicals town water has ... I have never ever had a ph problem before an was a real eye opener for me (scary as to ) .. I have 2 fish left who are in hospital but are doing better than I expected , my feather finned catfish sores are clearing up fast ..
I now have invested in a ph meter for accurate readings and bought the Seachem ph buffer and water conditioner for my tank .. Have stripped the tank of gravel an structures an water and gunna start from scratch .. Intend to leave my fish in hospital for ten days ....I realise that I have to change my strategy an prep my water before topping up or cleaning my tank from now on ... I wish to thank every one for their help , I appreciate it very much thank you all .. Cheers


 

Danjamesdixon

Recently, I had an Ember Tetra contract an unknown bacterial infection, yesterday he was euthanized using clove oil.

Today I have found one of my guppies not able to swim, and not wanting to eat. He is not overfed and he is thinner than usual. This has only happened today, I am assuming Swim Bladder Disease. Could these be related? What should I do? I don't want another tank wide epidemic like I suffered with my previous tank.

Today I dd a 30% water change to clear the melafix I was treating the tetra with, my parameters after that are -

Nitrate - 5
Ammonia - 0.25
Nitrite 0
pH 7.6
 

Matt68046

Sounds more like a parasite. More discription is needed, but "skinny and not wanting to eat" and "cant swim" sounds like Hole in the head parasite. The treatment is metronidazole, IF and I stress IF this is what we determine to be wrong with your guppies. Is their Poo Stringy? Is their tail droppy? (this would suggest velvet)
 

Danjamesdixon

Today I found the guppy dead, his tail totally shredded. Two days ago he was acting normal, that's a quicker mortality rate than anything i've seen! All the others are fine for now, but I feel like this could be something that needs serious attention. I was planning on treating with Interpet No 9, obviously now that has been thrown into question.
 

Matt68046

Can you get antibiotics in the Uk? Melafix is not gonna stop any serious infection, you need Oxytetracyline, Kanamycin, or Minocycline (maracyn-2)
 

AbsurdAj

Hmm looks a huge part of the problem stems from the fact you have ammonia in the water. When there Is high toxin in the water, the fishes immune system become weaker then usual making them more susceptible to sickness.you should probably find a way to keep the ammonia at 0 or else your fish many keep getting sick


 

Danjamesdixon

Absurd, I have never actually owned a tank that has had 0 Ammonia, ever. I brought it into question on here a while back and it turns out it's a more common situation than you would think. There has always been just a tinge of green in my test result, regardless of tank, water change schedule, stock, or water.

This particular tank has been set up for around a year now, and there have never been any problems up until this point. I am currently dosing with Interpet No 9 as planned and will follow that up with Interpet No 6 White Spot, since that also kills common parasites.
 

Jomolager

Do you have a QT?
 

Danjamesdixon

Unfortunately not Jomo, money has been extremely tight and I haven't been able to set one up :/ Hopefully I will be in work soon, so if the Interpet treatment fails I will have another line of defense.
 

Sarcasm Included

The tinge of green is most likely an error that shows up in the API test kits, it should be considered your zero baseline for ammonia. I am unfamiliar with your current line of treatment, but meth blue baths would definitely assist in any anti-biotic treatments. I am not a fan of melafix or pimafix as they are little more than antiseptics that make the water smell nice, IMHO. I don't know why you would treat a bacterial infection for parasites, it would just create more stress on the fish. If money is tight, I would use neomycin which treats once a week or kanamycin treated flakes to reduce the expense. Methylene blue is really cheap as well, but use only in baths or it will kill your BB.
 

Danjamesdixon

Sarcasm, I was going to treat for parasites as a precaution, plus everyone seems to think it's a parasite so....? I feel the same about Melafix, it isn't strong enough to have any positive effects on diseases that would actually benefit from medical treatment.

Tomorrow is the second course of the Interpet no 9, after that I will monitor my stock closely, unless you strongly suggest a course of Neomycin. I don't think removing and bathing my stock in MB is going to do anything other than stress them out.
 

Sarcasm Included

Parasites don't shred the tails and take some time to kill a fish. Besides not eating and getting thin, which could be a bacterial infection as much as a parasite, have you seen to suggest a parasite? Another question you should be asking, is how was the parasite introduced? If you haven't added a fish or other organism in the last few weeks, there is little chance that this is parasitic. If it is truly fast acting as you stated, then that reduces the time from when you introduced the parasite to the system.
 

Danjamesdixon

I did wonder, everyone i've spoken to about this suggested a parasite, but it's acting like a bacterial infection, rather than a parasitic one. The tank appears normal right now after one dose, all the inhabitants are behaving as they should, I just hope the no 9 is enough to wipe it out
 

Matt68046

Thinner and not wanting to eat is what made me think parasite. I totally agree with the M. Blue for their shreadded tails, and a good antibiotic, but have no clue what interpret no 9 is..... Sorry if I screwed this one up for you. Sounds like you know what your doing.
 

toosie

Thinner and not wanting to eat is what made me think parasite. I totally agree with the M. Blue for their shreadded tails, and a good antibiotic, but have no clue what interpret no 9 is..... Sorry if I screwed this one up for you. Sounds like you know what your doing.

You didn't screw this up for anybody. You offered a possible cause (parasitic infection) for the symptoms described. Bacterial infection is another possibility. Sometimes its hard to determine what is causing something like this. It could even be a toxin or food that's gone bad, a viral infection, or any number of things. Parts of the puzzle could be missing and it could be none of these things. Doctors run tests. We can't. All we can do is try to ask enough questions to help rule out some possibilities and maybe give us insight as to what the real cause is.
 

Danjamesdixon

+1 ^

That's a talent of mine, I SOUND like I know what i'm doing The reality is far, far from it teehee
 

Matt68046

I wish the uk would allow you guys some proper meds. What is the active ingredient in that no 9 stuff? Like which antibiotic is it? I use Oxytetracycline hcl and metronidazole as my antibiotics.
 

Danjamesdixon

No 9 has 3 active ingredients - Bronopol, Formaldehyde and Benzalkonium Chloride. I've always preferred the Interpet range to things like Melafix, which by comparison just isn't strong enough to treat anything worth treating.
 

Jomolager

Unfortunately not Jomo, money has been extremely tight and I haven't been able to set one up :/ Hopefully I will be in work soon, so if the Interpet treatment fails I will have another line of defense.

You could set up a QT in a plastic tub. If you don't have a filter or sponge filter you just do daily huge water changes. Depending on where you are you might have to have a heater though.
 

Danjamesdixon

I started a new thread but realized this one was still active so I may as well stick this in here -


Hello all, as some may know I have been battling something in my tank that shouldn't be there recently.

Today I found one of my guppies with red markings at the tip of his tail. After a water test, my nitrates and ammonia are very slightly up, probably owing to me beginning to change half my filter media from wool to ceramic rings. I will do a 20% water change now to remedy that. I have not changed out the whole canister, and am aware the change needs to be enacted over a long period of time.

As for the guppy - i've read that the red marks at the tip could be caused by a parasite. I've suspected there may be a parasite in the tank for a few days now, and have been doing daily water changes after seeing my guppies flashing. They have stopped since the daily changes have started. For now he is acting in the norm, interacting with me, eating well and darting around the tank. Any thoughts?
 

Matt68046

Do they have stringy poop? Try not feeding for a whole day and turning up the temp, if they start acting fine it might suggest an internal parasite that in the later stages the fish will present bacteria like symptoms and die. This could be due to Hole in the head disorder, tough to cure, or some kind of worms.......
If no stringy poo,....your guess is as good as mine.
 

Danjamesdixon

Throughout the course of the day I found various other guppies with massive rips and tears in their tales. One in particular is healing extremely quickly, although he has been flashing a lot for the past week despite bacterial treatment (none others are flashing). Another guppy now has tiny red dots on his tail as well, though not at the tip this time.

I swear I just saw my BN pleco with raised scales before the lights went out before bed, which would indicate dropsy, except he's not swollen and doesn't have pop-eye - Why can't I ever just get easily identified and treated ailments? I refuse to let this tank go into meltdown.
 

Rivieraneo

Dan, the formaldehyde in interpret 9 will affect your BB, this may be the reason for your recent elevated ammonia levels. Have you looked into streptococcus?
 

Danjamesdixon

I have no idea what that is Rivieraneo, and a quick google also revealed nothing. The ammonia was only very slightly raised however, according to my test kit (which has never read 0 ammonia on my tank strangely).

I need to figure out if all this is being caused by bacteria or is parasitic so I can at least attempt to treat this before it wrecks my tank. The no 9 apparently hasn't worked, which would indicate it's parasitic. But there are symptoms from both parasites and bacterial infections as far as I can see, and the more I read the more variables and different answers are injected, making it all that much more difficult
 

Thai Aquarium owner

Dan, I don't know what testing kits you are using for the test of your tank water, but any reading over 0 ( Zero ) for Ammonia or indeed Nitrite also, will cause all kinds of issues in the tank, as you have not made the Nitrogen Cycle closed loop.
It seems to me you are a dog chasing its tail at the moment, and you need to go back to basics on fish welfare to help cure your bacteria/parasite issue = good water quality
IMO your issues are caused by the poor water quality, and you need to address this issue first by correctly getting the tank cycled.
Your Ammonia escalation has almost certainly been caused by the replacement of the filter wools with ceramic rings, which should have been done really slowly over a long period of time to prevent this happening.
 

Danjamesdixon

I am using an API master test it Thai. I brought up this issue once before on here and was told that other people have had the same issue and not to worry because it was quite common. There has always been a tinge of green in my result, regardless of my water change schedule, or what tank I am testing, or where I get my water from. I have been doing daily water changes for a week, compared to my usual weekly 25% and the result has not gotten anymore yellow.

Regarding the filter, I have only changed about a quarter of the media currently.
 

toosie

Do you have a magnifying glass kicking around? You might be able to see things on the fish or get a better look at some of the symptoms if you do. Look for anything unusual, you just never know what might help determine what is going on. Also watch their breathing. Are they struggling? Breathing faster than usual? Extra slime coat? (Tough to tell on a tiny fish, but it may look like the fish is just generally duller than usual). Look, and watch closely. Sometimes even using a flashlight to shine in while lights are off, may help to pick out things that may go otherwise unnoticed.
 

Danjamesdixon

Here is a list of the current symptoms in my stock -

Body - Red dots
Ripped Tails
Guppy's excretions appear white and fat, and occasionally stringy
(potentially) raised scales on pleco

Behaviour - one guppy flashing

The tetras I have left are showing no signs of symptoms, apart from one completely disappearing about a week ago with no warning. I have upped my water changes since then anyway and vacuumed the gravel more extensively to combat it's decomposition, as finding it would mean breaking down the entire tank (red tetra in red gravel = invisible).
 

toosie

Not all fish take well to anitbiotic treatment. Some of it can be pretty harsh stuff. Since you just did the Interpet #9 treatment, it's my opinion that some of the things you are seeing now, could be linked to it. Red spots on the body, may indicate a parasite, but it could also be a sign of hemorrhage due to internal organs getting poisoned, or due to tissue damage from a harsh chemical. Flashing can be a sign of a parasite, but it can also be due to skin irritation from ammonia or other harsh chemicals. Raised scales can be an indication of dropsey, which can be caused from a bacterial infection, parasites, to kidney malfunction, which again could possibly be attributed to a harsh treatment. Ripped tails can be caused from flashing, or fin rot, but fin rot is usually caused by stress and water conditions, such as a trace of ammonia, or stress from the treatment.

If this was my tank, and if you have totally finished the Interpet #9 treatment, I would choose to continue small daily water changes, put in fresh activated carbon to remove any residual chemicals, and wait at least a week before doing anything else. After a week, of fresh water, and letting the tank inhabitants de-stress a bit, if things are not improving, I would then re-evaluate the symptoms. If things have been improving for them, I would just continue providing them with really good water conditions.
 

Danjamesdixon

That's the main thing that is stressing me out toosie, the sheer number of causes and pathways all these symptoms could have led on from, it really make's things difficult to identify.

That's pretty much what I have done aside from the activated carbon. It has now been a week since the No 9 dosing, according to the instructions you can't dose anything else for a week after the treatment. Throughout that week my guppies were still flashing so I have been doing daily water changes.
 

toosie

If I'm understanding you correctly, and you haven't put in fresh activated carbon, it's even more likely this is causing their current symptoms. The fish will have been subjected to the chemicals in this treatment longer than they should be. This can be very, very hard on them. The activated carbon will help remove all traces of the chemicals. Please be sure to put fresh in ASAP, remember to rinse it well first.

EDIT: I think I have misunderstood you. I think you meant the treatment calls for 1 dose that is meant to stay in the tank for 1 week? And that you dosed it 1 week ago?

Is it just a one dose treatment?
 

Danjamesdixon

No, No 9 is a two dose treatment, one dose, and then another dose 4 days later. After that you have to wait a week before starting another treatment, be it of No 9 again, or anything else. That's as I understand it anyway.

If you think activated carbon will help my fish, I will definitely pick some up in the morning (it's like 3AM over here haha)
 

toosie

I am certainly hoping it will. I don't want to see you losing any more fish, so I don't want to give you bad advice. It's just the symptoms are so varied like you say, and possibly this is one thing that might explain them all.

Keep open to ideas from other members. Somebody may see a flaw in my thinking and if it sounds right to you, listen to your gut. I'll keep mulling things over too.

Using the fresh activated carbon will help prepare your tank for other treatment options if something else can be determined. It's always a good idea to completely remove one medication before using another.

In the mean time, I'm also going to try learning a little more about Interpet #9.


Finding info, the material safety data sheet, or even instructions, is proving very difficult.
 

Danjamesdixon

I share that want toosie, trust me! - thank you very much for your (hopefully continued) support

Update for the day -

Symptoms have been minimal, no strange looking excretions, no flashing. One guppy's fin has healed up well, whereas another has 1 more rip than yesterday. The red dots on the third guppy persist. My pleco's scales look "defined", but i'm putting that for the side as i've seen it before and if it was dropsy I have a feeling it would be more obvious.

I am now running Seachem activated carbon as suggested by toosie, it is hung in front of my filter outflow. A 30% water change has been done with gravel vac.

Parameters -

Ammonia - 0.25
Nitrate - 5
Nitrite - 0
pH - 7.8
Temperature - 24.5


On another note, would you like me to PM you the instructions I have for No 9?
 

toosie

Thank you, I'd appreciate that very much!

Thanks for the update too! Keep us posted.
 

Similar Aquarium Threads

Replies
3
Views
411
julifhy
Replies
23
Views
2K
skar
Replies
2
Views
179
StickyFishy
Replies
6
Views
237
AvalancheDave

New Fish Disease Threads

Latest Aquarium Threads

Top Bottom