Is my Columbian catfsh shark dyng?

lovecatt

Member
Can anyone help me? Markings have started to appear on my columbian catfish shark, his fins have started to rot and have pieces missing from them. I also think he has some sort or blister on his nose and it constantly appears to have blood on it. I have looked it up and everyone seems to think its due to water conditions however I am sure that the water is in good condition. Does anyone know what is wrong? Would it help if I added salt to the tank? if so, 2 parrot fish are also in the same tank, would they tolerate the salt?

He also keeps swimming to the top of the water to gasp for air it seems and a bubble appears out of his gills is ths normal behaviour?
 
  • Moderator

jdhef

Moderator
Member
Welcome to FishLore!

It sounds to me like he is suffering either ammonia or nitrite posioning.

You did not fill out your aquarium information, so I do not know if you are aware of the nitrogen cycle. If not, I highly recommend you read up on it. It is the most important thing to understand when keeping fish. But basically if the tank has not been cycled, you most likely have high ammonia and/or nitrite levels.

Catfish are scaleless fish, and because of that, salt in the water actually burns their skin. So it is a no-no to use salt when scaleless fish are in a tank. Additionally, even if the catfish could tolerate salt, I do not think it will help with your problem.

Good luck and feel free to ask any additional questions you may have. Also, it would be great if you would fill out your aquarium info, so people will be able to help you out more.
 
  • Thread Starter

lovecatt

Member
Thank You so much! I am sure that is the problem now that I know I can try to treat them. What do you recommend I should do? Water changes every day or treat them with medication?
 

Chances

Member

Hendrix Fish

Member
It is possible that it a combination of diseases (caused by poor conditions), also columbian sharks do better in brackish water, they tend to just be hardier and happier. But parrots cannot survive in brackish.
 

pepetj

Member
Columbian Shark are a brackish species that unfortunately as juveniles are kept in freshwater as they're sold in LFS. It is true that they withstand fairly good tolerance of water parameters as youngsters but as sub-adults and further in their development they do need brackish tanks with specific gravity of at least 1.005.

Too bad they're marketed as a freshwater shark; they need marine salt (not freshwater aquarium salt) or they will develop a nasty skin condition that ends in death due to opportunistic infections.

A 4 footer tank is considered minimum since they can reach up to 14" long.

Pepetj
Santo Domingo
 

Sharkdude

Member
pepetj said:
Columbian Shark are a brackish species that unfortunately as juveniles are kept in freshwater as they're sold in LFS. It is true that they withstand fairly good tolerance of water parameters as youngsters but as sub-adults and further in their development they do need brackish tanks with specific gravity of at least 1.005.

Too bad they're marketed as a freshwater shark; they need marine salt (not freshwater aquarium salt) or they will develop a nasty skin condition that ends in death due to opportunistic infections.

A 4 footer tank is considered minimum since they can reach up to 14" long.

Pepetj
Santo Domingo
+1
You took the words right out of my mouth, I will add that they are also a schooling fish that needs to be in groups of 3+.
 

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