Important Need advice from older aquarists

TheFishmonger

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Obviously, I did not quarantine my fish when I first bought them because I started with them and a week or two adding fish did not make a difference. But I am in a difficult position 11 months down the line due to recurrent infections.

In the past 11 months, I have added replacement fish and transferred both plants and fish from 20 gallons to the 5.5 gallons and vice versa. So I cross contaminated them over and over at different time periods down the line. Although most of my fish are going strong (my fish appear healthy and have doubled in size, some even reproduced) I have had my share of losses. Yes, I know losses are part of the hobby, but I don't like stupid losses. My losses are not due to water parameters, but bacteria and parasites.

All but one Rummynose, half of the Harlequin rasboras, half of the celestial pearl danios, and one betta. Of those losses, some were during the past three months. I lost one betta due to a complication of constipation and bloating or maybe even early stages of dropsy (I don't know but except for 2-3 raised scales that went away, he did not have pinecone) 5 days ago, three celestial pearl danios due to wasting disease, one celestial pearl danio started losing balance and died, one Rummynose started losing balance and died. I currently have the last Rummynose with balance loss but she is still alive, although swimming slightly vertically. I also happen to have purchased replacements for the betta, the harlequins and I am looking for a CPD male because I have so many females.

To the point. As I am still learning the inner workings of the hobby..

I am planning to medicate all fish both old and newly purchased in one tank. I am waiting on the medication as it was out of stock and I had to watch my betta die without being able to help him. It will take two (more) weeks until I am in the position to do so. I don't believe leaving the replacement fish in a bucket on the side would make a difference. So I will let them get settled with the old fish. Then I will medicate with anti-bacterial and anti-parasite medication. In the meantime, I am trying to find out a way to disinfect plants. Yes, I do believe the medication will take care of the plants as well, but that does nothing for the plants in the 5.5 gallons. So I plan on rinsing the plants in aquarium salt then adding them in the 20 gallons tank that will be medicated. While I wait during these two weeks, I plan on emptying the 5.5 gallons and bleaching it. I will bleach that tank, 99.9%. An eye for an eye, hundreds of thousands of bacteria colonies for my betta. Then I will let it dry for two weeks before I can reuse it. I am bleaching the 5.5 gallons because that was the tank where the betta used to live in and it could have had anything even dropsy. One thing is almost certain, the culprit was bacterial. I am also planning to add aquarium salt in the 20 gallons tank, but I am afraid to do so because I have no clue how the Corydoras would react and I am not sure now how much salt I should add.

So this is my plan to take care of the issues I have with random deaths due to disease. For the past 11 months except for September & February, I lost 1 fish. So 1 fish dead almost every month might be random but it is definitely due to dormant infections that become activated at some point down the line for whatever reason. At first, I thought it must have been the rummynose breeding quality or the harlequin rasboras that failed to grow to normal size, then it hit my celestial pearl danios and my betta. I couldn't order medications with the COVID crisis. I am going to quarantine and medicate every fish I get, but it does not make sense for me to do so right now as I plan to medicate them all. Even just now as I type this I realize that I did a mistake. I placed my replacement betta in the same quarantine bowl that my betta died five days ago. Sure I rinsed it and wiped down but when I went online and I read about how other people disinfect with bleach, I became worried that the new betta could be infected.

Do you think this is a good plan to tackle the issue and take care of any active or dormant infections in my fish tanks for a long time? I am tired of losing fish, it bothers me when I lose my fish but it did not hit me too much until my favorite of favorites died.
 

A201

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IMO, its not a good idea to medicate a fish unless identifiable symptoms of disease are observed & the cases are extreme.
Medications sometimes can do more harm than good.
The best ways to prevent disease is proper water management, ability to recognize the symptoms of disease, fish selection &
Implementing a smooth low stress acclimation process.
Blindly medicating fish is a recipe for disaster.
I've medicated fish twice in my three decades of fishkeepering. The first time was in the late 80's, involving a shipment of Discus infested with parasites. I successfully treated with Formalin. The second time was approx. seven years ago, when a "quarantined" newly acquired cichlid spread Oodinium into two tanks. I successfully treated with Copper Sulfate.
Both Formalin & Copper Sulfate are high octane meds & can have harmful effects on humans. I have no plans to ever use those meds again.
On a side note; Antibiotics rarely cure fish & an ever growing number of countries are banning them.
Research the natural ways to treat common fish diseases. Those remedies include large Water Changes, Heat, Salt, Tea Oil & Herbs.
I strongly believe that using combinations of the listed are far more benificial.
 
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TheFishmonger

TheFishmonger

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Thanks for the reply. Would aquarium salt be tolerated by the Corydoras? If so, is one tablespoon of aquarium salt okay for the 20 gallons?
 

A201

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Off hand, I'd say "No". Cory Cats are a delicate species and have ridged requirements regarding water chemistry.
I have a good working knowledge about keeping Cories, but haven't kept them in many years. My Cichlids & Cory Cats are not compatible, Lol.
I'll have to defer to some of FL's Cory Cat pros, @DoubleDutch
 

Tallen78

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A201 said:
Off hand, I'd say "No". Cory Cats are a delicate species and have ridged requirements regarding water chemistry.
I have a good working knowledge about keeping Cories, but haven't kept them in many years. My Cichlids & Cory Cats are not compatible, Lol.
I'll have to defer to some of FL's Cory Cat pros, @DoubleDutch
In my understanding salt is no good for any scaleless fish
 

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