Fungal Infection From Leaf Litter?

LisaYP

Hi
A couple of days ago I noticed that my Platy had some white bits on her tail and some on her head. Today, she has one on each of her pectoral fins. Everyone else seems ok and the only change that has happened is that I bought some leaf litter for the shrimps. I followed the instructions and placed them in boiling water for a while before putting in the tank.
I don't know if what she's got is some kind of fungal infection from those but the white bits aren't fuzzy like a fungal infection normally is (according to photos googled on multiple sites).
I'm waiting for some API stress coat to arrive and she's currently in quarantine but she's not swimming. She's either at the top of the tank behind the filter input pipe or mostly on the floor behind a rock.
Can anyone advise please? Thanks
 

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MacZ

Looks a lot like stress-columnaris, but not like a fungal infection.

While certain fungi and bacteria colonize and break down leaf litter, but the species on there do not effect fish. Usually leaf litter is used as a supporting measurer against bacteria and fungi. So I would rule that out.

Please fill out the emergency template. And don't forget to post a picture of the whole tank.
You have to find the stress factors and eliminate them, otherwise any treatment will be futile and only show short term results.
 

LisaYP

I think the answer is clear? Nitrates? I just checked my tap water and there are 0 nitrates in it. I'm going to do a 50% water change in the main tank now.


Tank
What is the water volume of the tank?
It's a 240l tank but not sure of the water volume?

How long has the tank been running?
About 18 months

Does it have a filter?
Yes Fluval 360 cannister

Does it have a heater?
No

What is the water temperature?
Right now: 22.2c
What is the entire stocking of this tank? (Please list all fish and inverts.)
2 Platys (including the sick one I'm asking about), 2 pearl danios, 2 white clouds, 3 cherry barbs, 10 peppered corys, 6 amano shrimp, about 50 cherry shrimp, 2 nerite snails and about 30 mini ramshorn snails

Maintenance
How often do you change the water?
Weekly

How much of the water do you change?
30-50%

What do you use to treat your water?
Seachem Prime

Do you vacuum the substrate or just the water?
I have sand so I lightly agitate above it to remove waste

*Parameters - Very Important
Did you cycle your tank before adding fish?
Yes

What do you use to test the water?
API freshwater test kit

What are your parameters? We need to know the exact numbers, not just “fine” or “safe”.
Ammonia: 0.25ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 40 -80ppm
pH low: very pale blue but not as green as 6.6
Ph high: 7.4
Phosphate: 1.5ppm

Feeding
How often do you feed your fish?
Daily to every other day

How much do you feed your fish?
Pinch for top fish, 4-6 pellets for the corys cos the shrimp always pinch and take some away

What brand of food do you feed your fish?
Tetra, fluval, repashy, dennerle, hikari, king british

Do you feed frozen?
Yes twice a week

Do you feed freeze-dried foods?
No

Illness & Symptoms
How long have you had this fish?
Since she was 'born' in December 2019

How long ago did you first notice these symptoms?
2 days ago

In a few words, can you explain the symptoms?
There are white bumps on her body and they are bigger on her pectoral fins

Have you started any treatment for the illness?
API stress coat and she is quarantined

Was your fish physically ill or injured upon purchase?
No, i bred her myself. Shes always been very healthy and first at the front for feeding

How has its behavior and appearance changed, if at all?
She just stays at the top behind the intake pipe or on the bottom of the tank. Not interested in feeding

Explain your emergency situation in detail.
(Please give a clear explanation of what is going on, include details from the beginning of the illness leading up to now)
I've put her in a 39 litre quarantine tank and added API stress coat

Include pictures

is this why I'm tackling algae too?
 

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MacZ

I think the answer is clear? Nitrates?
If 40-80 is indeed your level: At least a significant factor.

Things I find to consider:
What is the water temperature?
Right now: 22.2c
Do you have fluctuations? If so, what amplitude?
pH low: very pale blue but not as green as 6.6
Ph high: 7.4
Do you know your GH? Platies tend to have problems with acidity and soft water.
How long have you had this fish?
Since she was 'born' in December 2019
Not the youngest grashopper anymore. Keep that in mind when treating.
Have you started any treatment for the illness?
API stress coat and she is quarantined
You can leave stress coat, that doesn't really do anything. You could first try salt (iodine-free) as livebearers as hardwater fish react positive to it and it will help to get the mucus layer to actually work and get the stuff off. Stress coat is rather indicated after the bacterial infection is treated to heal lesions. Either as a bath with 10grams/l for 15 minutes or low concentration for some days with 2-3grams/liter. Duration "as needed" but no longer than 5-6 days.
You can also try a treatment with non-antibiotic antibacterial meds and support with a low concentration of salt (1-2grams/liter).
I doubt the fish can withstand the side effects of antibiotics though, so I would not try those.

Another factor that almost stung im my eyes: Tune down the lights. 70% of that will be enough.
 

SparkyJones

if nitrate is that high, it would suggest there's more than a bit of waste breaking down, which does cause bacteria and fungus, and does raise the dissolved solids of the tank (TDS), Which will increase GH.

the tank doesn't show any signs of neglect really, so why are the nitrates as high as they are? 30-50% water changes weekly.... it doesn't really add up for what appears to be a clean tank, clear water, nothing crazy looking for being overstocked..... the nitrates being like that doesn't make sense.
Did you recently come out of a long cloudy phase, white to yellow in color hazy water???

I wouldn't say necessarily columnaris, but I do thing we are looking at external Flavobacterium, and all are Gram negative, so a gram negative antibacterial would be in order for treatment. Columnaris is just one of many gram negative Flavobacteriums all are bad if a fish is open to infection from it and can't fight it off, but Flavobacterium columnare is the worst of them and I don't think this is that, if it were, it would certainly be hitting the other platys.

Platys generally live 3-4 years with optimal conditions, this could be old age for this fish also as to why it's opened up to it and can't fight it off and why the other fish are fine. you mentioned Dec 2019, it's coming on 3 years now.

Also do you supplement calcium for the snails and shrimps? if so what do you use?
 

MacZ

and does raise the dissolved solids of the tank (TDS), Which will increase GH.
Minimally. GH is only calcium and magnesium, TDS is everything dissolved in the water, including nitrates, humic substances and DOC.

I wouldn't say necessarily columnaris, but I do thing we are looking at external Flavobacterium, and all are Gram negative, so a gram negative antibacterial would be in order for treatment. Columnaris is just one of many gram negative Flavobacteriums all are bad if a fish is open to infection from it and can't fight it off, but Flavobacterium columnare is the worst of them and I don't think this is that, if it were, it would certainly be hitting the other platys.
Stress-columnaris is not actual columnaris. It's a name for a syndrome caused by opportunistic bacteria, among which are many Flavobacterium species.
 

SparkyJones

Stress-columnaris is not actual columnaris. It's a name for a syndrome caused by opportunistic bacteria, among which are many Flavobacterium species.
Yeah, Kind of drives me a bit bonkers with "columnaris". as a go to generic term.

Kind of like Fish TB, it's Mycobacterium tuberculosis. but there are other Mycobacterium besides that specific species that can bang up your fishes, but everyone thinks their tank has tuberculosis and gotta kill everything.

just my pet peeves....
 

MacZ

just my pet peeves....
I have that too with TB. With stress-columnaris I stress the "stress" until I'm all stressed myself. :D
 

LisaYP

If 40-80 is indeed your level: At least a significant factor.

Things I find to consider:

Do you have fluctuations? If so, what amplitude?
The temp fluctuates maybe at maximum .9 of a degree higger but they are used to that

Do you know your GH? Platies tend to have problems with acidity and soft water.
I havent tested but I've attached a screenshot from my water supplier for my area. Its no excuse but i didnt realise about GH. I feel terrible now. She and the other Platy, were born in this area but if i need to raise it, how do I do that? And will the others in the tank be ok?
Not the youngest grashopper anymore. Keep that in mind when treating.

You can leave stress coat, that doesn't really do anything. You could first try salt (iodine-free) as livebearers as hardwater fish react positive to it and it will help to get the mucus layer to actually work and get the stuff off. Stress coat is rather indicated after the bacterial infection is treated to heal lesions. Either as a bath with 10grams/l for 15 minutes or low concentration for some days with 2-3grams/liter. Duration "as needed" but no longer than 5-6 days.
You can also try a treatment with non-antibiotic antibacterial meds and support with a low concentration of salt (1-2grams/liter).
I doubt the fish can withstand the side effects of antibiotics though, so I would not try those.

Another factor that almost stung im my eyes: Tune down the lights. 70% of that will be enough.
Yea I didnt factor her age in to it

I do have the lights on an increase light timer. It reaches its peak for a couple of hours at the time i posted then decreases until 'sunset' and lights off
if nitrate is that high, it would suggest there's more than a bit of waste breaking down, which does cause bacteria and fungus, and does raise the dissolved solids of the tank (TDS), Which will increase GH.

the tank doesn't show any signs of neglect really, so why are the nitrates as high as they are? 30-50% water changes weekly.... it doesn't really add up for what appears to be a clean tank, clear water, nothing crazy looking for being overstocked..... the nitrates being like that doesn't make sense.
Did you recently come out of a long cloudy phase, white to yellow in color hazy water???

I wouldn't say necessarily columnaris, but I do thing we are looking at external Flavobacterium, and all are Gram negative, so a gram negative antibacterial would be in order for treatment. Columnaris is just one of many gram negative Flavobacteriums all are bad if a fish is open to infection from it and can't fight it off, but Flavobacterium columnare is the worst of them and I don't think this is that, if it were, it would certainly be hitting the other platys.

Platys generally live 3-4 years with optimal conditions, this could be old age for this fish also as to why it's opened up to it and can't fight it off and why the other fish are fine. you mentioned Dec 2019, it's coming on 3 years now.

Also do you supplement calcium for the snails and shrimps? if so what do you use?
I don't know what to say. When i did the 50% water change there was minimal poop and just a few stray leaves. As i have live plants and corys i assume some of the poop is dug into the feet of the plants and used as fertiliser

I dont get it either and no, no blooms of any sort. No new additions, the newest additions are 5 corys that were born in the tak and are now about 6 months old

I do supplement calcium for the snails and shrimp but admitedly not as much as i should do. Probably one block every 3 months....I use this
 

MacZ

The temp fluctuates maybe at maximum .9 of a degree higger but they are used to that
Even if they are used to that, were there more fluctuations lately on the Isles? Over here on the continent we are experiencing day maximum temperatures variations of +/- 15°C lately and I at least hear similar things from a friend in Scotland. I knwo it seems tedious but I have to make absolutely sure.
I havent tested but I've attached a screenshot from my water supplier for my area. Its no excuse but i didnt realise about GH. I feel terrible now. She and the other Platy, were born in this area but if i need to raise it, how do I do that? And will the others in the tank be ok?
Hope the screenshot turns up by the time I've posted, but right now I can't see it.
You would have to raise GH and KH both. Crushed corals, limestone, additives... I have a tendency to limestone as it just settles at one point and gets unbelievably stable.
The other fish are all softwater species, they might become sickly.
Sadly a "classic community tank problem". Fish with barely reconcilable needs are put together and usually the species least adapted to the water gets problems long term.
Yea I didnt factor her age in to it
It might just be its time.

I do have the lights on an increase light timer. It reaches its peak for a couple of hours at the time i posted then decreases until 'sunset' and lights off
Then I would decrease the maximum down to between 50 and 70% of the maximum and go from there.
 

LisaYP

If 40-80 is indeed your level: At least a significant factor.

Things I find to consider:

Do you have fluctuations? If so, what amplitude?

Do you know your GH? Platies tend to have problems with acidity and soft water.

Not the youngest grashopper anymore. Keep that in mind when treating.

You can leave stress coat, that doesn't really do anything. You could first try salt (iodine-free) as livebearers as hardwater fish react positive to it and it will help to get the mucus layer to actually work and get the stuff off. Stress coat is rather indicated after the bacterial infection is treated to heal lesions. Either as a bath with 10grams/l for 15 minutes or low concentration for some days with 2-3grams/liter. Duration "as needed" but no longer than 5-6 days.
You can also try a treatment with non-antibiotic antibacterial meds and support with a low concentration of salt (1-2grams/liter).
I doubt the fish can withstand the side effects of antibiotics though, so I would not try those.

Another factor that almost stung im my eyes: Tune down the lights. 70% of that will be enough.

Forgot to add the screenshot from my water supplier. Attached now
Even if they are used to that, were there more fluctuations lately on the Isles? Over here on the continent we are experiencing day maximum temperatures variations of +/- 15°C lately and I at least hear similar things from a friend in Scotland. I knwo it seems tedious but I have to make absolutely sure.

Hope the screenshot turns up by the time I've posted, but right now I can't see it.
You would have to raise GH and KH both. Crushed corals, limestone, additives... I have a tendency to limestone as it just settles at one point and gets unbelievably stable.
The other fish are all softwater species, they might become sickly.
Sadly a "classic community tank problem". Fish with barely reconcilable needs are put together and usually the species least adapted to the water gets problems long term.

It might just be its time.


Then I would decrease the maximum down to between 50 and 70% of the maximum and go from there.
We had a hot weekend just gone here. When i checked the temperature on thursday (the day i do water changes) it was 23.2

I'll keep an eye on her, thank you

So do you think not to add anything for the hardness?
 

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MacZ

Forgot to add the screenshot from my water supplier. Attached now
1.75 is low, means there is likely no significant KH either...

So do you think not to add anything for the hardness?
Honestly... I would put them in another tank and raise hardness there slowly and leave the water as is in the current tank. Or leave the platies and let them go extinct in your care long term. Not saying you offer bad care, but don't restock livebearers. You have perfect water for softwater fish. Make use of this.
 

LisaYP

1.75 is low, means there is likely no significant KH either...


Honestly... I would put them in another tank and raise hardness there slowly and leave the water as is in the current tank. Or leave the platies and let them go extinct in your care long term. Not saying you offer bad care, but don't restock livebearers. You have perfect water for softwater fish. Make use of this.
Thanks for your honesty.
I only got the platies as rescues from someone who was literally holding them over the toilet bowl. One has already died and the other (this one's and the other in my tank's mother) has already died last year. Luckily for me i wasnt overun by fry but my plan was to let them die and not restock.
I have the 39 litre that the sick platy is in so i will see if she survives this and then add the other, leave them in there and slowly do what needs to be done for them.
I really appreciate you not judging me.
I still have no idea why my nitrates in the main tank are so high but i'm going to be testing more. I kind of got out of it.
 

Fisch

What is the Nitrate in your source water? Could you have high Nitrates in there?
 

LisaYP

What is the Nitrate in your source water? Could you have high Nitrates in there?
No, they are 0. I testedthe tap water
1.75 is low, means there is likely no significant KH either...


Honestly... I would put them in another tank and raise hardness there slowly and leave the water as is in the current tank. Or leave the platies and let them go extinct in your care long term. Not saying you offer bad care, but don't restock livebearers. You have perfect water for softwater fish. Make use of this.
I just remembered ..... could Seachem Flourish tabs cause the nitrate spike? I added a few of those too
 

MacZ

I just remembered ..... could Seachem Flourish tabs cause the nitrate spike? I added a few of those too
I boycott Seachem because of their misleading advertisement stragegy that lead to many common misconceptions in fishkeeping that are responsible for many dead fish.
So I had to look it up: Very low Nitrogen-content, so I doubt it's responsible for this.
 

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