Fish "plague" Affecting Multiple Tanks

  • #1
While this isn't a disease, my fish isn't at ease that's for sure.
Recently a few of my fish have been seeming to have columnaris perhaps. Those fish have been quarentined but other fish still seem to be having some issues.
One of the first signs I notice before they start to fall more ill is a wobble.
When they swim in place they can't hold still like normal and instead bob back and forth.

Then they become itchy.
The rub on plants, on waste, making it worse, they even rub on rocks and other decorations, sometimes vigorously.
This has lead to a few issues between multiple fish.

The black mollies are developing mold, losing more scales due to rubbing themselves on rocks, this makes more moldy patches due to open wounds. There is also a patchy light colored spot on them which isn't molding but is obviously still a bit concerning.

My Silver molly has really hurt herself.
She is like the therapy dog of the tank, if anyone feels bad she is with them, she is the most curious and I even have a post about her following my cories for fun.
While rubbing herself on a rock or decoration this damaged seemed to occur.
Her eye is very swollen as seen and has bursted blood vessels.

I've never dealt with this destructive of behavior and I'm hoping someone else has and been able to save the eye.
I believe it has only been this bad for a day or two.

I'm going to start the mollies with a slightly salted tank to prohibit anymore mold growth, and I also got some hydrogen peroxide since I've got spawning problems lol


  • #2
Hey. Let’s try to figure out what’s going on. Do you know your parameters? Have you treated for parasites?

  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Haven't treated for parasites, water is better than it has been, especially after all the work I did today and the past week.
I didn't have a decent enough ratio of bottom feeder to bottom feeder food being fed a few weeks ago, so there was a lot more waste in the tanks.
I've been fixing that issue though.
My tap water naturally has ammonia in it, .25-.50 got my water tested yesterday and it was really good.
I've got a few test strips left but I need to find a better test, I have a liquid ammonia test.
There was mold/columnaris or something on one decoration that sometimes had food on it, so I took it out and cleaned it really well, but didn't put it back in.

Cleaned all my substrate in every tank today and added some new substrate in my 20.

One of my black mollies got bone thin last week, so I separated the two mollies and fed them alone since they were both thinner than the others.

Currently I'm a bit concerned about my silvers eye because I don't want it to get worse or her to lose it, though if she can survive the loss, I will still do whatever I can, would just prefer she gets better but I'm lost on how to even approach it.

Condition of black mollies seems to be worsening.

They are starting to get weaker despite having fresher water and less stress.
They had been doing better but it's off and on.
So weak they are starting to rest on the floor much more often than normal, I'm worried the end may be near and I have to work all day today.

No change on Silvers eye.

Looks like I'm losing another Black Molly.
Seems to mostly affect them the most since they bond so well.
I just hope the other can be saved. It looks so painful to die like this..
She has short bursts of energy then just lets herself float wherever she will go.
Not sure if it would be better to have her fight it while I'm at work, or say goodbye earlier.

The other swims around alright but is also obviously tired of fighting.
I don't really know what med to give them.
I've just been following what other people do aside from meds and dye.

  • #4
I’m curious. If they hurt themselves by flashing, why not treat for external parasites? The silver’s eye should heal ok as long as the water parameters are where they need to be. You’ll need a liquid test kit to know though.
  • Thread Starter
  • #5
I honestly don't even know what med to use to treat for external parasites.

I can order a liquid test kit online though.

Just knowing that some of my other fish show similar symptoms in my opinion makes me worry that I could lose a lot more than just my black mollies.

I love every fish and want them to live a long healthy life.


  • Thread Starter
  • #7
Upon close inspection of the worst faring molly, at least one gill is completely affected, totally grown over in bacteria.

Yeah, possibly tonight if I leave early for work, but they won't have it for a while.
  • #8
Upon close inspection of the worst faring molly, at least one gill is completely affected, totally grown over in bacteria.View attachment 480092

Do you have a magnifying glass? Can you go over this fish to see if there are parasites? Like gill/skin flukes?
  • Thread Starter
  • #9
Unfortunately no magnifying glass, but I do have a microscope lol
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
I wasn't really able to look close enough with the lens I grabbed, since I've got to go to work. It's an 8 hour shift.
I'm going to see if I can have my boyfriend take meds to them when I go on my lunch, probably around 5 hours from now.
Not sure if she will make it til then, she starting to swim in circles when she gets bothered.


  • Thread Starter
  • #11
Is there anything else you recommended I get?
I've got a bit of stability, some prime conditioner, and aqueon conditioner.
Aside from general cure is there anything else I may need in the future?
Ordered the API teste kit.
  • Thread Starter
  • #12
Unfortunately they don't have general cure at the shop I just went to.
So disappointed I can't get it until tomorrow morning.
  • Thread Starter
  • #13
Boyfriend didn't know what to get so he got Fungal cure and treated them with it.
  • #14
I Know how hard it is when life gets in our way. You’re doing the best you can. Anything that will kill external parasites especially flukes.


  • Thread Starter
  • #15
Lesser well off Black Molly passed away earlier.
Hopefully the two are able to power through.
Thank you for the advice. I wouldn't have thought the bacteria was a secondary infection on my own.
  • Thread Starter
  • #16
My pregnant emerald cory is starting to itch now too.
I also found one of my guppies has lost quite a few cunks of his fins, not sure why I wasn't here to see the loss.
I'm not sure if I should quarantine the cory too, I also don't want to mix my quarantined fish because they're all at different stages and I don't want to hurry any along.
I'm worried for every fish.

  • Thread Starter
  • #17
Guppy died while going to the store to get more filters. ;'c
Only symptoms was the fins. No swimming funny until close to death, no scratching no growth of mold.
I did buy a magnifying glass but couldn't see any flukes or any mold even on the worse of molly. I think whatever affected her left her when she died.
She wasn't able to be removed from the tank for quite a few hours after death.

Current tank situation, all healthy seeming fish aside from two kuhlI loaches and my juliI cories are in my 20
Any fish who showed symptoms of sickness at all or who was too thin and needed personal feeding, in a temp 15

This is panda molly, been itching a lot

Striped loach who appeared dead this morning but wasn't

2 small dojos one of which is healthy I just placed in there while changing tanks up.

2 platies one of which I thought was dead as well this morning but eventually moved

and the guppies one of which is dead now


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  • Thread Starter
  • #18
Tested the small temporary tank with sick looking fish, that's not a fully established tank, it's sitting at
15ppm Nitrate
.25ppm Nitrite
.25-.40 Ammonia (present at these levels in tap)
About 7.4 PH

Main 20 sitting at
5-10 Nitrate
.25-.40 Nitrite
.25-.40 Ammonia
7.4-7.5 PH

Tap water test

5 or less pmm of Nitrate
.15-.25 Nitrite
.25-.50 Ammonia
7.6 PH

There's still one more tank to test, and that is the fungal treated tank.
The water is green, it will mess up the test yeah?
I put a few of the sicker looking fish in there because I didn't want to treat multiple tanks a time with a lack of air stones and filters that will get stained.

They're all swimming better, I'm going to go look for a general cure.

So many things to deal with at once!
  • Thread Starter
  • #19
I finally found some general cure.
Definitely sounds like parasites the way some of the fish are acting. Would you recommended I treat all my tanks with it? Or continue to quarantine fish separately so I don't medicate healthy fish?
  • #20
I finally found some general cure.
Definitely sounds like parasites the way some of the fish are acting. Would you recommended I treat all my tanks with it? Or continue to quarantine fish separately so I don't medicate healthy fish?

It sounds like the fish have been everywhere. I’m sure not. Just listening to the posts I’ve lost track of who was where when. If there’s any chance even one drop of water was transferred from sick to healthy, treat. Such a rough time. I’m so sorry.

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