More disease woes - need help

Phloxface

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It seems you just get finished treating one thing and then another thing pops up!  This time it's Phlox again. Ever since I got him he has had some grayish-white patchy coloring on his head. I assumed it was his normal coloring. I examine my fish regularly with a flashlight and magnifying glass to spot any changes. I've noticed today that Phlox has quite a bit of this powdery looking stuff on his head/gills/chin. I also noticed a small sore/lesion about the size of one scale on his head, just midway between his eyes and mouth. I no longer have any doubt... he has Velvet!    He is not scratching, darting or behaving oddly. He seems to be the picture of health except for the grayish-white powder on him. 

I immediately got some Mardel Coppersafe and am currently moving the snail to a 1 gallon container during treatment and I'm starting treatment for Phlox immediately. Should I be using antibiotics at the same time or after the Coppersafe? I'm worried once the parasites fall off he will develop infections from the wounded skin.  Is Velvet even treatable once it's already attached itself to him or will he die of infections once the Velvet is gone? I've read so many bad things and I'm afraid I'll lose my little guy!  :'(

I am going to treat Lava as well because even though he shows no outward signs, I have used nets and gravel vacumn between the tanks and I know Velvet is very contagious! I recently put live plants in Lava's tank so now I'll have to take it all apart again and keep the plants in a bucket while he's being treated.

What about the snail? Can he get Velvet or carry it back to the tanks later? Should he be treated with anything and if so, what?
 

chickadee

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I would treat both fish but I am not sure you can use Coppersafe on shellfish. I am not sure either that snails get Velvet. If I were you I would call the number on the Coppersafe Bottle and ask if it can be used on snails and if so put him back with Phlox and treat him. If not then he will have to stay out and be quarantined for at least a month and see if he comes down with it. The bad thing about treating Velvet is that it is sensitive to light and light feeds the parasite. You need to take some toweling or a dark garbage bag and wrap the tank in it and block out all the light and turn off all the lighting for a period of 2 weeks until the treatment is over and raise the temperature slowly to 83 degrees F (a degree up about every 2 or 3 hours) and leave it there for the full two weeks. This will make the parasite leave the body of the fish and go out into the water and they will die because they will not have a fish to survive on. DO NOT give up and quit this treatment before the full 14 days is up or the parasite will settle back on him and it will have been to no good cause. It is treated very much like Ich but the light treatment is different and the temperature is not quite as high.

I do hope this helps. Just remember as little light as is possible. I fed my little one before I turned on the room lights fully and only opened the door to the tank just to feed and that is all. They can go with out a water change except when medications require it. Then use as little light as possible.

Please keep me informed of their progress. Get some Net Soak to sterilize the nets or throw them out and get new ones. try not to use the items between tanks if you do not absolutely need to.

Rose
 

Stradius011

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I use Coppersafe too and it says on the instructions to remove all snails and shrimps from the tank you will be treating.
 

chickadee

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Thanks for the infromation. I have never used the product and do know that all otos and scaleless fish need to be removed as the copper will burn their skin so that is important but was not sure of shellfish or snails. thank you for sharing.

Rose
 

Stradius011

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I never knew that tou needed to remove all scaleless fish!!!
 

chickadee

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Yes copper compounds are irritating to the skins of fish that do not have scales (like catfish, Otos, and sharks, and any other fish without scales). They should also never have anything added to the tank that contains salt or methylene blue or Malachite green or Formalin.

Rose
 
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Phloxface

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Update on Phlox:

It seems he didn't have Velvet. I called the number on the box and described him to them and they didn't think it sounded like Velvet but said I could treat him as a precaution. After almost a week of treating his spots look the same so they are probably just his normal coloring. He's lively and eating well. He's no longer in the dark (I see no need now) but I'll continue his treatment for another week. They said it won't hurt him either way. I did not treat Lava with Coppersafe. I just put aquarium salt in his water and raised his temp. He seems to do much better when he has salt in his water... I can't salt Phlox's water because of the snail.  I kept an eye on Lava and he seems just fine, happy, playing and jumping for pellets.  I think I'm just an over protective fish mommy!  ;D

Phlox has a batch of new live plants sitting in his aquarium bucket waiting to be planted when his treatment is finished. He's going to love the new plants. I'm getting really sick of the plastic plants.
 

chickadee

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Salt will not hurt your betta in small amounts for small periods of time but will affect the real plants if you leave it in there for long so I would leave the plants in the bucket until you take the salt out. Just a word of caution. My plants did not do well when I used a pinch to medicate my little guy and now I am plantless. They took a long time to do it but one leaf after another slowly died and it finally just was more trouble than it was worth to have a couple of leaves so I am going back to silk for a while until I can decide what to do.

Rose
 
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Phloxface

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I was told at the store to dip the plants in a strong solution of saltwater for 10 seconds and then rinse with clear water to kill any snails or eggs that might be on them. This was one of my concerns when I got them. I was worried about killing the plants doing this but they seem fine. The plants in the bucket are Phlox's and he has no salt in his tank and never can have any because of the snail. I have had to leave them out of his tank for now because the Coppersafe will kill plants. In a few days I can do a big water change, put in some fresh carbon and put in his plants and snail once the coppersafe is removed.
Lava's tank already has plants as you've seen and he does have salt in there. He seems to have a really hard time breathing with no salt. I've tried it and his gills are pumping like crazy. So far the plants look good and not many leaves are dieing. Lava seems to have the unusual habit of pruning the plants for me! He pulls off any dead leaves and lets them float away while leaving the healthy ones alone. He's a bit of a gardener.  ;D I'm doing a partial water change in his tank tomorrow so it will dilute the salt a little. I'll see how he does with a little less salt.

What types of plants did you have?

I have Amazon Swords (which I swear have grown at least 1 1/2 inches in the first week!), Red Ludwigia, which has grown a good root system even in the first week, Water Wisteria which has a few leaves on the bottom turning brown but Lava has been pruning them  and Cabomba which I thought would die for sure because it looks so delicate but seems to be thriving!
I think I may add some plant nutrients and help them along a little. I'll see which ones survive best and make future plants purchases based on that. My Petsmart doesn't have much of a selection of plants so I was a little limited. I'll have to find another aquarium store with more plants to choose from.
 

chickadee

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I had a sword plant but no one has ever been able to distinguish the exact type for me as it is not one of the common ones. I was going to try to send a closer picture of it to Butterfly but alas lost all my pictures when my computer went and never got another pic. The others should have been some of the hardiest plants alive the Anubias (coffeeola (sp?) and petite and nana) and then I had Aponogeton plants of 3 types (bulb propagating). I had them growing in EcoComplete substrate so they were being fed constantly and yet they all died one or two leaves at a time after I treated my little ones with some aquarium salt. Maybe it was the combination of something in the substrate food and salt, I do not know but I have to order all my plants in and I have had a horrible time with snails even with soaking too so I guess my little guys may have to get along with silk at least until I can figure out how to do it all and the money to do it with.

Rose
 

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