Pleco bloody scabs on body & gash underneath, help please!

lucascrafton

Member
Tank:
Tank volume- 125 gallons
Tank has been running for about 3 months
I use an SunSun HW-3000 canister filter
Two 500 watt heaters on opposite ends
Temperature is kept at about 80-81
All of the fish in the tank include 8 discus, 5 angelfish, and the pleco.

Maintenance:
Once weekly 20% water change using a vacuum to collect debris on top of sand.
I use prime, equilibrium, acid buffer, alkaline buffer, and discus code. I previously used discus buffer.

Parameters:
My fish tank was cycled before adding fish.
I use the API freshwater master test kit.
pH: 7.5 (I know this is considered too high for discus, i’m gradually lowering pH)
Ammonia: 0ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: around 35ppm

Feeding:
I feed my fish 2-6 times a day, just depends how quickly they eat. I have juvenile discus, so that’s why they’re fed so much.
I normally feed my pleco 2-3 algae wafers a day.
I feed one block of beefheart and one block of brine shrimp
The beefheart and brine shrimp are both from the brand “San Francisco Bay Brand”
They are frozen blocks, I warm up some tank water to defrost them.

I’ve had the pleco for about 2 months. He is around 8-10 years old and is almost 15’ long.
He has some bloody scabs on his body and a big gash underneath towards the bottom of his stomach (refer to pictures). I’ve seen the discus eating the slime coat off of him (I know it sounds bizarre but watch the attached video). His behavior has been off for a few days and he has been out in the open, instead of hiding like he usually is. I took him in from a lady on offerup who wanted to rehome him. Unfortunately, he was kept in a 30 gallon tank before I was able to take him in, so he may have stunted growth.

As of right now, I’ve added a dose of melafix and turned off the light. I added a pea but he hasn’t eaten it yet, and the discus still won’t leave him alone .

So far, I’ve concluded that he may have a parasitic infection, he may have too much protein in his diet, or he may have a prolapsed anus. Any tips or help is appreciated! Thanks for your time.

edit: it won’t let me add the videos but i attached pictures.
 
  • Thread Starter

lucascrafton

Member
If anyone can help please reply i’m not sure how to proceed!
 

mrsP

Member
That looks more like a tumour to me? How does he eat and behave? Are they normal or affected? And how do you know there were too much protein in diet? Other than growth on his skin he looks healthy. Quite often people rush to medicate this and that, and make their fish a lot worse doing so.
 

mattgirl

Member
To upload a video it has to be hosted somewhere else first and then linked to here. I think most folks here upload it to youtube first.

Does this big guy have a cave of some kind where he can get away from these other fish? I am thinking he is uncomfortable with the temp as high as it is. That may be why he is out in the open more than normal. Maybe he is trying to find cooler temps. I am not sure it is going to work long term having fish needing different temps in the same tank. One or another of them will suffer in the end.
 
  • Thread Starter

lucascrafton

Member
mrsP said:
That looks more like a tumour to me? How does he eat and behave? Are they normal or affected? And how do you know there were too much protein in diet? Other than growth on his skin he looks healthy. Quite often people rush to medicate this and that, and make their fish a lot worse doing so.

I initially thought it was a tumor as well but I don’t think a tumor can just show up overnight, i feel like i would’ve noticed it. It seems like he’s been eating normally, he eats between 1-3 algae wafers a day and i’ve been meaning to pick up some zucchini. I put in a pea yesterday because i know they can help with digestion, but he still hasn’t eaten it. I feel like him being kept in such a small tank for so long (with the previous owners) could definitely contribute to some health problems. I’ve had him for about 2 months and haven’t noticed any problems until yesterday. I suspect that there may be too much protein in his diet because i feed my discus beefheart and he might eat some of the leftovers. Right now i’m at the conclusion that it might be a mix of a couple of things, i’m also going to my lfs to see what they have to say.
mattgirl said:
To upload a video it has to be hosted somewhere else first and then linked to here. I think most folks here upload it to youtube first.

Does this big guy have a cave of some kind where he can get away from these other fish? I am thinking he is uncomfortable with the temp as high as it is. That may be why he is out in the open more than normal. Maybe he is trying to find cooler temps. I am not sure it is going to work long term having fish needing different temps in the same tank. One or another of them will suffer in the end.
Thanks for the tip, i’m new to this forum and i’ll definitely do that next time I need to add a video. I don’t have a cave for him, but there is driftwood and fake plants in the tank and he likes to hide under the driftwood or in the back corner. I tried looking on amazon but i can’t find a cave large enough for him, but i’m going to look at my lfs today. Do you know where I can buy a cave large enough? The temp has been consistent for 2 months and hasn’t caused any issues, would it normally take two months for him to have a reaction if it were too warm? I know that 76-78 is reccomended for them, so would 2-3 degrees warmer make him that uncomfortable? I definitely agree with you, i have plenty of people that could potentially take him or I can donate him to the lfs if i can’t get this figured out. -Lucas
 

mrsP

Member
Adult plecos actually do need protein in their diet, you can sometimes see them eating dead fish in tank. They don't kill it, but will eat the dead one.

Keep feeding it well and water clean. You can use ceramic flower pot or vase as cave, and they also do need a good chunk of wood in tank.
 

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