Chronic Red Gills

FranM

This 120 gallon aquarium has been set up for 3.5 years. I have zero ammonia, nitrite and <10 nitrate. I have two remaining silver dollars over 11 years old, four clown loaches, (the two newest 7months) 3yoyo loaches and 10 cherry barbs (for 7 months also). Oh, I also have a power head which agitates the water surface for increased oxygen exchange.

SOME of the fish including one small clown and 4 cherry barbs have prominent pinkish red in the gills going on for months. Literally months. I have dosed prazipro a few times and a round of metroplex in food. All during this time fish have been active and eating. No rapid breathing, no flashing. How the heck do I fix this? It’s not normal.

Finally, I cannot quarantine to treat. I could give a quick bath but no long term quarantine. Has anyone had a similar experience that they were able to resolve?

Thanks.
 

Fishstery

This 120 gallon aquarium has been set up for 3.5 years. I have zero ammonia, nitrite and <10 nitrate. I have two remaining silver dollars over 11 years old, four clown loaches, (the two newest 7months) 3yoyo loaches and 10 cherry barbs (for 7 months also). Oh, I also have a power head which agitates the water surface for increased oxygen exchange.

SOME of the fish including one small clown and 4 cherry barbs have prominent pinkish red in the gills going on for months. Literally months. I have dosed prazipro a few times and a round of metroplex in food. All during this time fish have been active and eating. No rapid breathing, no flashing. How the heck do I fix this? It’s not normal.

Finally, I cannot quarantine to treat. I could give a quick bath but no long term quarantine. Has anyone had a similar experience that they were able to resolve?

Thanks.
Can we get some pictures? Bright red gills COULD be a cause for concern but usually unless it is accompanied with flashing or rapid gill movement/gasping then it is just normal gill coloring. Some sources say red gills means a water issue or parasite and others say that red gills are healthy.
 
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FranM

I am attaching a video, I hope. Please watch to the end. Trying to compare two of the smaller clowns. They don’t stay still. The smaller one needed a dose of metroplex in food for skinny. He has definitely filled out. In the beginning you will see one of the cherry females and another in comparison that doesn’t display the pink gill. Hopefully you can see.
 
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Fishstery

Hmm I do see what you're talking about. You could try paraguard, or general cure. But first, what are you using to test your water? If it is api master kit check the expiration date just to ensure your tests aren't expired. Next I would do another ammonia test on the tank and tap water and be extra careful to put the right about of drops in and don't under or overfill the test vial. If ammonia is still 0 I would consider the possibility of a gill parasite.
 
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FranM

I am linking a video, I hope. Trying to compare two of the smaller clowns. They don’t stay still. The smaller one needed a dose of metroplex in food for skinny. He has definitely filled out. You will see one of the cherry females and another in comparison that doesn’t display the pink gill. Hopefully you can see.
Hmm I do see what you're talking about. You could try paraguard, or general cure. But first, what are you using to test your water? If it is api master kit check the expiration date just to ensure your tests aren't expired. Next I would do another ammonia test on the tank and tap water and be extra careful to put the right about of drops in and don't under or overfill the test vial. If ammonia is still 0 I would consider the possibility of a gill parasite.
Hmm I do see what you're talking about. You could try paraguard, or general cure. But first, what are you using to test your water? If it is api master kit check the expiration date just to ensure your tests aren't expired. Next I would do another ammonia test on the tank and tap water and be extra careful to put the right about of drops in and don't under or overfill the test vial. If ammonia is still 0 I would consider the possibility of a gill parasite.
Thank you for looking. Right now I dosed with Prazipro after the water change yesterday. Yes I’m using an API kit and it is a few years old now. Would Prazipro ruin the biological filter? I just bought a Salifert nitrate kit because I couldn’t stand reading the API kit. I like it a lot.
 
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Fishstery

I am linking a video, I hope. Trying to compare two of the smaller clowns. They don’t stay still. The smaller one needed a dose of metroplex in food for skinny. He has definitely filled out. You will see one of the cherry females and another in comparison that doesn’t display the pink gill. Hopefully you can see.


Thank you for looking. Right now I dosed with Prazipro after the water change yesterday. Yes I’m using an API kit and it is a few years old now. Would Prazipro ruin the biological filter? I just bought a Salifert nitrate kit because I couldn’t stand reading the API kit. I like it a lot.
If the api kit is expired you may be getting a false reading for ammonia. I just want to 100% rule out ammonia poisoning before considering a gill parasite because if ammonia poisoning goes undetected there will be secondary infections that follow and it can blow up up be a complete mess. As for the prazi no it will not effect your filter bed. But if you tried prazi already and it didn't work then there's no sense in redosing it again. Prazi works pretty quickly for flukes IMO and apparently if prazi didn't cut it then you may be dealing with a different protozan that doesn't respond to it (given that a parasite is in fact the issue here). As for the metro, if this is a gill issue then it would be better to dose the water column instead of using it with food. Dosing metro in food is good for internal parasites but can absorbed in the skin and gills and may work better for you if dosed directly in the water column.
 
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FranM

If the api kit is expired you may be getting a false reading for ammonia. I just want to 100% rule out ammonia poisoning before considering a gill parasite because if ammonia poisoning goes undetected there will be secondary infections that follow and it can blow up up be a complete mess. As for the prazi no it will not effect your filter bed. But if you tried prazi already and it didn't work then there's no sense in redosing it again. Prazi works pretty quickly for flukes IMO and apparently if prazi didn't cut it then you may be dealing with a different protozan that doesn't respond to it (given that a parasite is in fact the issue here). As for the metro, if this is a gill issue then it would be better to dose the water column instead of using it with food. Dosing metro in food is good for internal parasites but can absorbed in the skin and gills and may work better for you if dosed directly in the water column.
Yes I did the Metroplex because that clown with the pink gills was also showing skinny disease symptoms. It has filled out greatly. I’m reluctant to dose the tank as you would probably imagine and I worried about the sensitive loaches.
 
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Fishstery

Yes I did the Metroplex because that clown with the pink gills was also showing skinny disease symptoms. It has filled out greatly. I’m reluctant to dose the tank as you would probably imagine and I worried about the sensitive loaches.
You could set up a hospital tank and treat only the affected fish. Any time certain fish have health issues they should be separated from the main tank to prevent further spread
 
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Ryngwrayth

Have you treated for ich? Loaches are often the first in the tank to sucumb to it and although the white spots are what we see most it is actually a gill issue and most fish die from damage to the gills.

Loaches are sensitive to a lot of meds as well. Hopefully you are checking meds for that before giving them?
 
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FranM

Have you treated for ich? Loaches are often the first in the tank to sucumb to it and although the white spots are what we see most it is actually a gill issue and most fish die from damage to the gills.

Loaches are sensitive to a lot of meds as well. Hopefully you are checking meds for that before giving them?
Thank you for responding. In my initial post I mentioned a quarantine tank was out of the question. And, having loaches, I know that I need to be extra careful using meds as they are a “scaleless” fish.
You could set up a hospital tank and treat only the affected fish. Any time certain fish have health issues they should be separated from the main tank to prevent further spread
Thank you but I initially mentioned that a quarantine tank was out of the question.
 
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Ryngwrayth

You did not say...have you treated for ich?
 
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FranM

You did not say...have you treated for ich?
I have not because I have not seen the typical symptoms of ich—spots, flashing, labored breathing. None of it. And only a few fish out of several are exhibiting the pink/red gills.
 
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