Rummy nose swimming completely crazily? is it SBD? - with video


One of my rummy noses (one of 3 true ones, I gather, but I just added 6 false ones tonight) is swimming like he's having a downright seizure. I don't know how to embed this video, but I took a short video and uploaded to Youtube:
. You can see the other rummy noses toward the end and I believe they are fine.

So is that what SBD looks like in a rummy nose tetra? I *think* his problem is that he cannot right himself. Will he survive being thrashed against who knows what in the tank? As I put in the video, he doesn't do this all the time. I watched him do it for maybe 1-2 minutes before he stopped. He doesn't go back to schooling/swimming normally though; he just stops swimming and acts like they first did when they were first introduced into the tank (stressed). He just hangs out at the bottom under some cover; when they were doing that, I dubbed them all Windows for doing that sit-in-place stutter like Windows does. Especially when the school accidentally left someone behind somewhere and the separated one looked like he needed to be "reset" to be brought back to the school.

It does appear that when he's still like that he eat things from the sandbed. He picks things up from the sandbed and spits them back out, which is what a lot of my rummy noses did when they first got into the tank with my cories. I hope it's not a sign of stress that my rummy noses feed occasionally like my cories. On the other hand, their noses are still fairly red on the ones that have been here for a while (I just added 6 today, bringing it to 9), and redder than they were when first coming home from the LFS.

I hope it's not some kind of poisoning, but I'm at a loss for what it could be otherwise. I just checked the water tonight and everything was fine -- 0,0,10. My cories look fine too. I hope someone can help. >.<


That's really wierd. I don't think it's swim bladder disease though. Usually fish effected with that move much slower than usual & will actually display more of a tendency to float. I could be wrong about that though. I've only had to deal with SBD in cichlids before so the behaviour could be different. It alsmost looks more like something is irritation it though. Like something lodged in it's mouth or gills & it's trying to dislodge it. Perhaps even a parasite.


Well that is him when he's acting rather agitated...he can be calm (scared) and slower to swim as well, and it looks like he's swimming upside down when I can watch him move more slowly. I certainly hope it's not a parasite... >.< Will have to update more tomorrow, assuming he hasn't thrashed himself into a rock overnight...

Also, although he's the only one thrashing about (and I can easily ID him because he's one of the three true rummy noses in there) I haven't seen the other two true rummy noses schooling with the 6 false ones in a while...haven't even seen them at all the last couple times I've checked the tank tonight. I hope they're just skittish in a corner somewhere and waiting to get back on the bus when the school swims by them. I will have to check more thoroughly tomorrow.

Okay a couple more videos before bed. You can see he's getting tired. I'm hoping it's SBD.

By the way, I don't have a breeder box or anything to just contain him or else I'd do put him in one. I'll have to take care of it tomorrow.


Good morning Midthought,

I'm inclined to agree with Nutter about it not being SBD. Although I can't say for certain, my first thought was a possible parasite. I believe that if it were SBD he wouldn't be able to control the seizures he's having. He would always be swimming funny and out of control instead of just every now and then.

Best wishes. Let's see what other responses you receive.


My thought was that he was swimming much more erratically when he was trying to school with the other rummy noses when he saw they were near.

Unfortunately I found him dead when I woke up today though. I just pulled him out. He's still red around the nose and eyes. Upon visual inspection, I can't see anything major wrong, but I'm not sure I know what I'm looking for either.

Everyone else in the tank appears fine.


Oh no! So sorry that you lost him Midthought.


Yeah I am bummed. I only got him on Thursday though so I called up my LFS and explained, and they're cutting me some slack on the 24 hour rule. If my water checked out with them (which it should), they'll give me another one. I certainly hope this wasn't my fault...


Sorry it didn't make it. I seriously doubt it was becasue of anything you have done. Your water parameters are fine, your other fish are fine & there hasn't really been enough time for it to get sick since you got it into your tank. It was probably already sick in the LFS & it's just the extra stress from the normal bag & transporting routine that has set off whatever it already had. These things happen from time to time & there's nothing we can do to see it coming or do anything about it.


Thank you, Nutter. As always, you are so helpful and knowledgeable. And thank you, Ken, for your input and condolences.

So...the fish in the video is long gone (and was the only one to display such crazy swim patterns) but I was reading up on some other fish diseases and though this might fit the's called whirling disease (fitting enough), apparently largely affecting trout. It's caused by a parasite, Myxobolus cerebralis, that is passed through tubifex worms (which I definitely don't feed). It largely affects juvenile fish because of the way it works on cartilage, is usually fatal and often causes skeletal deformities even when the fish does survive. Links I read below:

Whirling Disease FAQs

I think the Youtube clips I turned up are pretty similar to what I caught on tape with my rummy nose tetra as well.

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