75 Gallon Tank Brought home sick fish last night. Can someone please help identify what he had?

ThatLittleFox

Thanks for taking the time to read. We brought home a new fish (super red bristlenose pleco) yesterday from a pet shop we had heard positive reviews about. We scoped out this particular fish the day before, went home and did some research, and picked him up the next day. When we put him in his tank to acclimate, we noticed he had grayish spots on his fins, that looked like ammonia burns. We figured he'd be okay once we got him into our well-established tank... Tonight, we had to pull him from the tank because he looked like he was...well...dying. Upon closer inspection, he had developed tiny red spots all over the tail end of his body. What is this? What did he have when we picked him up? Is it contagious? How can I protect the other fish from getting this too? Pictures attached.

Tank
What is the water volume of the tank? 75gal
How long has the tank been running? 2 almost 3 months
Does it have a filter? 2 filters;
Does it have a heater? No, would overheat the aquarium.
What is the water temperature? 78F
What is the entire stocking of this tank? (Please list all fish and inverts.)
5 Yoyo loaches, 5 albino corys, 1 common pleco, 1 nerite snail, 6 amano shrimp, 12 blue dream shrimp, 12 cherry red shrimp, 1 x-ray tetra, 1 khuli loach, 1 super red pleco (deceased, problem)

Maintenance

How often do you change the water? once weekly
How much of the water do you change? 5 to 10 gallons
What do you use to treat your water? Seachem Prime
Do you vacuum the substrate or just the water?

*Parameters - Very Important
Did you cycle your tank before adding fish? Yes
What do you use to test the water? API test kit (not strips), twice a week with stable results similar to those listed below.
What are your parameters?
Tested 10 hours ago, before spotting any problems within the tank
Ammonia: 0.0
Nitrite: 0.0
Nitrate: 35 (5ppm higher than it was 3 days ago)
pH: 6.8

Feeding
How often do you feed? Once a day, zucchini occasionally in the evenings for the common pleco
How much do you feed your fish? 2-3 wafers
What brand of food do you feed your fish? omega one, hikari, bug bites
Do you feed frozen? once a week frozen cube of brine shrimp
Do you feed freeze-dried foods? no

Illness & Symptoms
How long have you had this fish?

Picked it up last night at a local pet store that came highly recommended.
How long ago did you first notice these symptoms?
Noticed he had some grayish spots on fins after bringing him home. Looked like ammonia burns from his prior tank, but we figured it would clear up once he was in a healthy environment. Tonight he started floating limply. Pulled him from the tank immediately and noticed that he has developed these tiny red spots from the base of his tail upward. He has since passed within 5 minutes of pulling him from the tank.
In a few words, can you explain the symptoms?
Began as a light gray spotting on his fins before placing him in our tank, within 24 hours had developed pin-**** sized red spots on his tail and body.
Have you started any treatment for the illness?
No, we are concerned that this fish was already ill with something worse than what we initially thought was just an ammonia burn on his fins. We have several other fish within the tank who have been thriving, and we are trying to figure out what this Super Red Pleco had before he passed away. If it is contagious, we want to do whatever we can to prevent our other fish from suffering the same fate, as well as
Was your fish physically ill or injured upon purchase?
Yes, the fish had gray spots we noticed once we brought him home and we thought this was likely an ammonia burn on his fins. Being a pleco, he was just chilling out in the aquarium we saw him at in the pet store.
How has its behavior and appearance changed, if at all?
When he arrived last night he was a little stressed while he was being acclimated, just sitting in one spot and looking a little freaked out. This was when we were able to get a good look at him and noticed he had what we thought was a some ammonia burns on his fins (gray spots). Once he was acclimated, we added him to the tank and he seemed to be acting pretty normal.

Explain your emergency situation in detail.
Since he has already passed on, we are really just trying to diagnose this illness ASAP so we can treat the fish within the tank and do our best to prevent them from getting this disease as well.

Photos taken shortly before he passed on...
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PurityNWhiteRoses

Sounds like the pleco lived in conditions with some disease. Yikes.

I'm not entirely sure, but the red spots could have been some bacterial or fungus infection. Sometimes red ulcers/spots appear rather than a white, fuzzy, cottony growth. If I were you, I'd get a fungal/bacterial treatment. I highly recommend a full tank Microbe-Lift Artemis treatment to make sure there is no spreading. I'd start with two days and check if any fish are showing symptoms. If not, I'd stop and would still check for a couple of days after. Don't forget to take the carbon out of the filter when you treat the tank. For the grey spots- I have no idea. Ammonia burns sound about right. I've had no personal experience with them, but I don't think they will affect the other fish. I'm sorry that you lost the pleco. Without the diseases, he would have been a pretty fish and have looked great in your tank. Good luck! I hope your tank is okay.
Sounds like the pleco lived in conditions with some disease. Yikes.

I'm not entirely sure, but the red spots could have been some bacterial or fungus infection. Sometimes red ulcers/spots appear rather than a white, fuzzy, cottony growth. If I were you, I'd get a fungal/bacterial treatment. I highly recommend a full tank Microbe-Lift Artemis treatment to make sure there is no spreading. I'd start with two days and check if any fish are showing symptoms. If not, I'd stop and would still check for a couple of days after. Don't forget to take the carbon out of the filter when you treat the tank. For the grey spots- I have no idea. Ammonia burns sound about right. I've had no personal experience with them, but I don't think they will affect the other fish. Good luck! I hope your tank is okay.
Forgot to mention- The stress on top of his diseases is probably why he passed away. From the looks of it the fungus was in the later stages and seems to have gone untreated.
 

ThatLittleFox

Sounds like the pleco lived in conditions with some disease. Yikes.

I'm not entirely sure, but the red spots could have been some bacterial or fungus infection. Sometimes red ulcers/spots appear rather than a white, fuzzy, cottony growth. If I were you, I'd get a fungal/bacterial treatment. I highly recommend a full tank Microbe-Lift Artemis treatment to make sure there is no spreading. I'd start with two days and check if any fish are showing symptoms. If not, I'd stop and would still check for a couple of days after. Don't forget to take the carbon out of the filter when you treat the tank. For the grey spots- I have no idea. Ammonia burns sound about right. I've had no personal experience with them, but I don't think they will affect the other fish. I'm sorry that you lost the pleco. Without the diseases, he would have been a pretty fish and have looked great in your tank. Good luck! I hope your tank is okay.

Forgot to mention- The stress on top of his diseases is probably why he passed away. From the looks of it the fungus was in the later stages and seems to have gone untreated.
Thank you so much for your response- I am looking into the Microbe-Lift Artemiss treatment now. I forgot to mention in my original post that I have a lot of live plants in my tank, so I was struggling to find something that was safe for them (Kanoplex was highly recommended by many hobbyists, however it is not safe for my plants or shrimp, or my scale-less loaches :( ) however, this Artemiss looks promising.

We have also thrown in a few Indian almond leaves we bought for the shrimp, since they naturally have antibacterial properties, we were hoping it would be a safe alternative to chemical treatments, or at least a good starting place.

I am worried that the pleco was suffering from hemorrhagic septicemia, which can be viral or bacterial... If it is viral, there is no real "cure" for it :(

My other thought (hope, really) is that these red spots/blotches could possibly been from whatever ammonia poisoning he had expereinced, and the stress from the move/acclimation/new tank perhaps sped up his demise, as you mentioned in your post...

Thank you again for your advice, and I appreciate your positive thoughts for my tank :)
 

86 ssinit

Ok first you really should qt all new fish. A month in a qt tank will keep you from having these problems. Ammonia burns shouldn’t have happened unless the fish was in a closed bag for at least 24 hours than left in the bag while acclimating.
For a 75 with a common pleco( waste machines that can grow to 13+”) you need to change much more water weekly. It may have been your water that did him in. Any change causes stress. Always best to start in a qt tank.
 

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