Disease diagnostic help

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish Disease' started by Jamie Gale, Jun 7, 2016.

  1. Jamie GaleNew MemberMember

    Hey guys and girls,

    I've had Guppies in my tank for around 2 weeks now (first 5 at beginning week 1, settled in well velvet purple bodies with orange/black tail fins. Second 5 at beginning week 2 whom seem to have settled faster than the first 5, these are a silvery front half and yellow rear half).

    However.... before week 1 was up, I lost one of my first batch, found him hiding down the bottom near/under my bog wood and I initially put this down to him burying his way under and getting stuck or something (he floated only after moving the wood).

    This morning I lost another (from the original first batch again), I found him hiding down the side of my driftwood piece.

    This has caused me to observe them quite closely over the past few hours once home from work. I have spotted a few things, and I cannot quite put my finger on what it could be.

    Aty this point I should state that my parameters are:

    Ammonia: 0ppm
    Nitrite: 0ppm
    Nitrate: 20-30ppm (tap water in my area is at around 10-15ppm)

    Firstly my observations are that they seem to take it in turns to sit at the top of the tank, sometimes taking mouthfuls of water and air at the same time (unsure if normal behaviour to do this). They are doing it less after a 30% water change, but they are still doing it. (most recent water change to todays was 2/3 days ago).

    Secondly I have noticed that some of the scales on the velvet purple guppies have turned a silvery white, it's quite obvious in cases as on some of them its clearly only on individual scales, on others its on groups of scales (but not smothering the scales, which is whats throwing me away from thinking ICH).

    Thirdly I have noticed The reddening of some of the frontal scales between the dorsal and the head, some of them have more than others, but in a similar fashion to the whitening scales at the back.

    Fourthly I have also noticed on 3 of the newer yellow guppies, the skin/scales behind the head towards the dorsal fin is almost translucent, where the other two are showing the full silvery frontal scales like the rest of the front half of their bodies. Similarly on a couple of my velvet purple guppies I have seen darkening of the scales/skin in this same area, but not translucent.

    Fifth thing of note is that two of the velvet purple ones have (and had...the one which died overnight last night was one of the little buggers) have worked out how to get in to the rear of my tank (3D background with my heater and filter tubing (external filter) is housed there too). I had to hook them out about 4-5 times yesterday, haven't a clue how they are dong it (jumping? I made sure to mesh up any water flow holes I made in the background to stop them sneaking through that way). One of these two, the one whom died last night, was beginning to get much paler in colour, nothing noticeable growing on him, no scale colour changes (apart from the paling).

    From what I have researched, there are signs of several different possible diseases/parasitic issues, so I am pretty stumped as a newbie as to what to think of this issue.

    Another thing to note is I do have live plants in my tank, Anubis (although he isn't attached to a rock) and Gigantea (I forget the exact names). The Gigantea is growing well, but some of the leaves are green, some are a translucent brown/red (all still growing though) is this normal?
    They are feeding well, getting fed algae flakes 3 times a day.

    I know this is a very long post, and I apologise, and thank you for making it to this point! I'm just a bit lost with it and worried about my remaining fish, it's been disheartening to lose two, let alone loosing any more before their time is up through nature.

    All help is greatly appreciated, and if I have missed any details please let me know.

    Many thanks,


    NB: It's difficult to get pics of these guys as they don't stay still long enough ;)
  2. Coradee

    CoradeeModeratorModerator Member

    Bumping this up for you
  3. tyguy7760

    tyguy7760Fishlore VIPMember

    Hope you get some help but I am far from a fish doctor. Sounds like they are gasping for air. Do you have an HOB filter? If not my first guess would be that the water is not being aerated enough. Is there anything disturbing the surface of the water? That is how the water gets aerated.

    Red gills sounds like ammonia poisoning but your ammonia levels are fine. What are you using to test your water? What temperature are you keeping the tank at?

    Again I'm far from the most experienced in diagnosing on this forum but pictures may help. Their are plenty of members that know diagnoses like the back of their hand.
  4. OP

    Jamie GaleNew MemberMember

    Thanks for the reply. My tanks average temperature is 25.4C. In the recent weather, it has been up around 26.7, the heater is thermostatically controlled so turns off when it detects the 26C it's pre set to. I'm using the API master test kit we all know so well.

    It's not a HoB filter, I'm using an external canister filter, but admittedly due to my decor (3D background) I have had to position the outlet below the waterline...so in theory nothing is agitating the surface. I do however have live plants? I thought that might be enough to oxygenate the ware through the days photosynthesis (they get 9 hours of light per day - on a timer). Before I had any fish in there, I was using a powerhead to agitate the water surface, but with it turned on, I'm scared to stress the poor guys out when I acclimate etc. Even now, they seem to dislike the water flow and stay lower or avoid the stronger flow areas *it is positioned towards the surface more). In terms of guppies, is this an ideal thing for them? Or is a powerhead a big no no for guppies?

    The reddening is not so much red gills, its more some of the scales on the back have gone red, it kind of looks like the scales have come off :S. After researching, it would appear that this colour strand of Guppy (known as Black AoC - Silvery head, black body with an orange/black tail) do tend to have the silvery scales in among the darker scales, so I am more comfortable about that now.

    So coming home tonight (early morning - working the late shifts this week....le sigh!) I have noticed the remaining 3 black guppies have gone very pale, just like the two before which have perished. I'm now seriously scared for the poor guys, I really don't want to lose them ;-(.

    To add a curve ball... from being at the top of the tank (but not gasping) when I got home, they then dropped and hung out at the bottom after turning the light on to inspect them (and rescue the little bugger who yet again jumped over my 3D background!). Having now turned the power head back on, they are active again. I'll run it over night and see what effect that has on the tank.
  5. tyguy7760

    tyguy7760Fishlore VIPMember

    Well you may want to invest in an air stone or just turn the power head straight towards the surface.
  6. OP

    Jamie GaleNew MemberMember

    Taken on board and its now angled as upwards as possible (which has greatly reduced the high flow areas in the areas my guppies love...bonus!) I do have 2 of my yellows now dormant on the bottom, only moving if I pop my hand in and give them a little nudge - will have to watch them closely. The rest seem to be highly active at the moment, chasing each other about.

    Since turning the power head on.... the Blacks have regained their darker colours and have lost the paleness they see to have developed today.

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