bad case of popeye in cory cat

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matt5120

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HI All:

First post here. I am hoping that someone can offer me some assistance. I have a cory cat with an extemely bad case of what I believe to be popeye. He has had this for many months now and I have tried two rounds of maracyn 2 with no improvement. The tank is 10-12 gallons(one of those eclipse tanks). It has both a back filter and a powerhead to run the undergravel. kept clean and I recently purchased a test kit that showed no ammonia, nitrites, or nitrates. However the PH is quite low. The tank has been setup for years and this particular fish is probably at least 5 years old. He was in the tank when I got it from a family member. I recently did a full water change/vacuum then started treating it with Melafix(recommended by my LFS). I am on 5th day of it now and its not helping at all. He moves around and seems to eat. It is just horrible looking and its really bothering me to see it. I am posting pictures of it below. If anyone has any thoughts it would be greatly appreciated. I truly like this fish and want to save it if at all possible. Thank you all in advance for your help.
 

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Jaysee

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Welcome to the forum. I wish I had something to offer that could help you.
 

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https://www.fishlore.com/aquariummagazine/dec07/fish-popeye.htm


Good morning and Welcome to Fish Lore. So sorry to hear that your Cory is ill. The two links above will give you more information on Pop eye disease.


My best recommendation at this point is pristine water conditions. How often do you do water changes? Increasing your water changes may increase your pH levels too depending on what the pH is right from your tap water. Test your tap water for pH levels.

You should have readings of 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and under 20 nitrates. Unless your tank is heavily planted your nitrates should not be 0 but under 20.
What type of test kit are you using?

Best wishes.
Ken
 
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matt5120

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HI Ken and Jaycee:

Thank you both for your replies.

Ken as for water changes not nearly enough. I try to do it monthly but that does not always happen. I just tested the water. The test kit I bought is called Nutrafin Test and its made by Hagen. It is a color matching test. The ammonia is at zero. The nitrite showed a very very light hinge of pink which says .1. The nitrates read about 5. I think they might be a little higher this time as the filter cartidge has been removed for the last 6 days I have been medicating. The PH out of the tap reads about 7 and the PH in the tank is about 6. The tank contains zero live or plastic plants. I certainly acknowledge I have not given it the care that I should have and have learned a valuable lesson to say the least. Despite this the water conditions seem to be pretty good. My guess is probably weekly water changes? The melafix seems to be a complete and utter failure just like maracyn 2 was.

Do you think it could possibly be parasitic? By the way the other fish all seem fine and healthy. I look forward to your reply.

Thanks again,

Matt
 

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Hello Matt,

Yes, definitely increase your water changes to weekly. This will also keep your pH levels higher and steady. You don't want sudden changes in pH levels. It's been my experience that you can increase the pH a bit faster than lowering it. If you lower your pH levels too quickly it can be fatal to your fish. Always add new water slowly.

I'm not familiar with the Nutrafin Test. Is it a liquid test kit? Paper test strips can be unreliable and difficult to read. The kit that is most recommended is the API (liquid) Master Test Kit. This kit also sells each test separately if it fits your budget better.

At this point I think pristine water conditions is going to be your best best bet.

Best of luck. I hope your fish is going to be ok.

Keep us posted please.

Ken
 
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matt5120

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HI Ken:

Thanks again for the reply. The testkit is liquid. It is not strips at all. You take a water sample, add drops of the appropriate reagent, shake, then match the results to a color chart. It has ammonia, nitrite, nitrite, and PH.

The melafix says to do a 25% water change after 7 days so I will be doing that today. It says repeat if needed so I am thinking I will try another round to see what happens. I also am concerned about all that medicine affecting the other fish in there that are perfectly healthy. It looks like a film on top of the water that must be the medication. The other thing is the filter cartridge...its currently not there because of the carbon. The medication says to remove carbon if possible. Its possible but making my filter useless. Any thoughts on this?

I will keep you posted again again appreciate the help.
 

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Hello Matt,

Your test kit sounds fine

Melafix is an all natural product and not a medicine. I don't feel that it will do any harm to your other fish as long as there are no labyrinth fish in the tank. See the link below:


Removing the carbon from the filter is a good idea so that it doesn't absorb the Melafix from the tank. If it absorbs it from the tank then it isn't doing your fish any good. Remember your beneficial bacteria is in your filter so it isn't being rendered useless by removing the carbon Your sponges and other media should remain in there. Melafix is said not to interfere with the biological cycle.

Your water may be cloudy a few days until the treatment is over and you replace the carbon. It should clear up on it's own with a water change and the carbon.

The film on top of your tank may be from fish food. Creating more surface area movement will solve this problem. Add an air stone/air supply line and it should help.

Ken
 
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matt5120

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Thanks again Ken. I did take the whole filter cartidge out. It is all one cartridge and the carbon was inside of it. Currently the water goes through nothing in the filter. I guess I should have just dumped the carbon out of it and can still do that. In regards to the film the tank has a lot of surface movement with the filter and powerhead. I usually do not see any sort of film which made me think perhaps it was the medication. I guess I will try another round of melafix but I honestly do not think it is going to help. I would have thought for sure that either that or the original marcyn 2 I tried would have cleared it up. As you can see from the picture its really bad. I know they can live without an eye but I would hate for him to lose it.
 
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HI Ken:

Unfortunately his eye never got better. Nothing at all seemed to work. It really seems that the eye would fall out but that never happpened. He is still hanging in there strangely enough. I just got a tank that was setup elsewhere that is about 35 gallons. I transferred all the fish to that tank. Could the eye problem possibly be parasitic? I would not think so but nothing for bacterial infections seemed to help. It has still not affected any of the other fish.
 

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Welcome to fishlore

That poor little guy. I am so sorry that he is doing so well. I hope he makes it.
 
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Thank you for the well wishes. It has been like that for a long time and just doesn't get better. I have tried a bunch of things now and nothing seems to work. : (
 

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Good morning,

It could very well be parasites. See the link in post #3 Fish Eye Disorders.

Best wishes.

Ken
 
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matt5120

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HI Ken:

Not sure if you read my other thread or not about what is happening with the tank. Now that the smaller tank is unused I am considering placing the catfish in there and trying some different medications. I get nervous to medicate cuz I worry I could kill him.
 
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Hey Ken I do not think he is going to make it. He was looking really bad so I threw him in the old tank and am trying melafix again. I came home yesterday and he was upside down but I did a water change and gently turned him back over. Today when I got home hes hanging in there but is breating very hard still. Obviously he is not moving around much either. Any last attempt suggestions? I know that anything is a shot in the dark at this point but I feel I have to try.

Thanks again.
 
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