Royal Pleco.. To Quarantine Or Not? Please Help.

BlueBeat

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Hi Folks.
Had this pleco for 6 years now. Never had issues. It is the only fish in the tank.
The setup is 30 gallon tank with AquaClear70 filter, natural river gravel, couple of river stones and 2 pieces of driftwood. All items are established (been in tank for over 3 years).

Couple of weeks ago, pleco developed a white spot and something that looked like a minor fin rot. I had a friend over who kept fish for many years and he suggested I treat the tank with Kanaplex. I called the company, they said it is safe for plecos.

I pulled the charcoal filter out and dosed Kanaplex per instructions. A week later all the spots were gone, fish looked healthy, so I done a 30% water change and inserted new carbon filter.

Everything "seems" ok, but Pleco stopped eating... or at least does not look like he is eating, as the wafers are untouched in the morning. Poops are very thin, almost clear. I tried another brand of wafers, still does not touch them.

I do not really know what to do at this point. I have a smaller, 10g ambulatory tank... I only used it once as a "transfer" tank, never as ambulatory as I never had a problem with this fish. My next thought is set that up with half of the water from current tank and half spring water, cycle it for couple of days and let the pleco stay there for several days to see if he starts eating, to eliminate rocks, pebbles, driftwood and current filter from the equation. Am I thinking this right?
Kindly let me know if there is a better alternative to consider.

Thank you in advance,
Michael.
 

A201

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The antibiotics might have put a dent in the benificial bacteria, causing an ammonia spike. I think doing a 50% WC 2× a week for a few weeks might help the situation.
 
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BlueBeat

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Crispii,
not sure what you mean by: "Why would you want to him?"

A201, Thank you! that is a drastic water change... I believe my test kit is very old as I mentioned I never had issue with this fellow. Will try to get ammonia kit tomorrow.
I also noticed that driftwood started to become a little fuzzy after treatment (I am thinking, the reason - he stopped chewing on it)
If I decide to go WCx2 week route, what do I do with driftwood? Pull it out or just rinse it with cold water and put it back or pull it out completely until/if he starts eating wafers?

Thank you for your time!
 

Crispii

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BlueBeat said:
Crispii,
not sure what you mean by: "Why would you want to him?"

A201, Thank you! that is a drastic water change... I believe my test kit is very old as I mentioned I never had issue with this fellow. Will try to get ammonia kit tomorrow.
I also noticed that driftwood started to become a little fuzzy after treatment (I am thinking, the reason - he stopped chewing on it)
If I decide to go WCx2 week route, what do I do with driftwood? Pull it out or just rinse it with cold water and put it back or pull it out completely until/if he starts eating wafers?

Thank you for your time!
Why would you want to *move* him? Sorry for the typo.

And also, you seriously need to upgrade your tank. A royal pleco cannot comfortably live in a 30 long term. In reality, these pleco can grow up to 17" and need a minimum tank size of at least a 120 gallon.
 
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BlueBeat

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Well, the reasoning behind that as mentioned to eliminate anything external that might cause loss of appetite.
as A201 mentioned, it could be the side effect of the treatment. Will get ammonia test tomorrow.
 

Crispii

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BlueBeat said:
Well, the reasoning behind that as mentioned to eliminate anything external that might cause loss of appetite.
as A201 mentioned, it could be the side effect of the treatment. Will get ammonia test tomorrow.
Honestly, just do a large water change. Moving it will be stressful.
 

scarface

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BlueBeat said:
Crispii,
not sure what you mean by: "Why would you want to him?"

A201, Thank you! that is a drastic water change... I believe my test kit is very old as I mentioned I never had issue with this fellow. Will try to get ammonia kit tomorrow.
I also noticed that driftwood started to become a little fuzzy after treatment (I am thinking, the reason - he stopped chewing on it)
If I decide to go WCx2 week route, what do I do with driftwood? Pull it out or just rinse it with cold water and put it back or pull it out completely until/if he starts eating wafers?

Thank you for your time!
I'm not him, bit I agree with doing, at minimum, twice a week water change, no less than 50 percent. Do this in the main tank, not the quarantine. No need to remove and rinse the driftwood or anything else. The important thing is to maintain good water quality.

I also agree that the issue was dosing Kanaplex may have caused some die off of beneficial bacteria.
 
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BlueBeat

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Folks,
Thank you!
Ok, now it is coming back to me. I remember many years ago I had cichlids and after treatment I had do take care of ammonia.
I also remembered that in the pet store they sold powdered bacteria for fish tanks and ammonia reducing chems. Should I use any of these if ammonia level is high, or water changes alone should be fine?
Thank you!

P.S. I am impressed by responses on this forum!
 
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BlueBeat

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Thanks everyone for your help!
Pleco's wounds healed and he is eating! Large WC + conditioner worked (I used Tetra Cleaning Bacteria).
Last question please. Is there a trustful source to buy driftwood for plecos, that does not require a month of external soaking? The last piece I bought a few years back took me several weeks to soak, until it stopped bleeding color.

Thank you.
 
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BlueBeat

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A201,
Thank you for suggestion. Seems like Manzanita has mostly thin branches. Looks nice, but I was hoping for thicker, common driftwood shape thing. I assume, shops do not sell "pre-soaked" wood. I remember after weeks of soaking it in the bucket, mine still painted water in the tank.
 

scarface

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Glad to hear it's getting better!

Most any driftwood sold in fish stores should be fine. Malaysian wood I find to be heavy and dense enough to sink right away. Or do what I do and collect them yourself. Go to a local river at low or receding tide, and you'll likely find plenty of pieces to add to your aquarium. Benefits of that is not only are they already waterlogged, but well-aged with lots of slimy growth from, algae, microorganisms, and bacteria. You can call it biofilm, aufwuchs, or whatever. Main thing is it's as natural of a diet as it gets. You could rinse it with a hose before adding. I find my plecos come out and taste new wood I add in and clean up the surfaces within a day or two, revealing a clean "sanded" look.
 
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BlueBeat

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Hmmm.. Interesting idea. There is a river near by and now is probably the best time to find stuff as water is somewhat low. Thank you for advise!
 
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