ICH!!!

If it isn't to late, and you're desperately looking for some advice, hopefully someone can help you out.

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Post by McEve » Thu Dec 08, 2005 1:57 am

Caesars

http://badmanstropicalfish.com/articles/article2.html

the interesting part concerning your question is;
However, salt should be used with extreme caution, since not all fish will tolerate its addition. In particular, do not use salt with sensitive soft water tetras such as neons, cardinals and glolites, scaleless catfish (which can be easily burned by it if salt is not predissolved)
There's several more on search for "catfish salt ich"

http://www.animalforum.com/fich.htm

Another popular treatment is the use of aquarium or marine salt. Bringing the level to 5 ppt will generally eradicate the parasite. Some catfishes may be sensitive to this salt level, and so if you do have catfish in your tank, go no higher than 2 ppt.
so on...

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Post by Caesars » Thu Dec 08, 2005 2:06 am

McEve wrote:Caesars

http://badmanstropicalfish.com/articles/article2.html

the interesting part concerning your question is;
However, salt should be used with extreme caution, since not all fish will tolerate its addition. In particular, do not use salt with sensitive soft water tetras such as neons, cardinals and glolites, scaleless catfish (which can be easily burned by it if salt is not predissolved)
There's several more on search for "catfish salt ich"
I will check it out, thanks :wink: I know about the pre-dissolving, I NEVER ever add salt to the tank directly. I put it in the sump and let it dissolve there slowly. Also, if the fish are not used to it, or in case of more than 0.1% concentration, it needs to be added in two installments to avoid shocking them.
I will do my suggested reading and come back to you on this one :D

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Post by McEve » Thu Dec 08, 2005 2:10 am

Caesars, note also the

http://www.animalforum.com/fich.htm

Another popular treatment is the use of aquarium or marine salt. Bringing the level to 5 ppt will generally eradicate the parasite. Some catfishes may be sensitive to this salt level, and so if you do have catfish in your tank, go no higher than 2 ppt.

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Post by INXS » Thu Dec 08, 2005 3:22 am

Tom,
I believe that salt is used:

1. in watesofteners to soften water by exchanging ions with other TDS (not sure of the exacts here but it is done)

2. It has a drying effect and drives water out, in food as in organs. This has a particularly destructive effect on smaller organisms such as disease particles.

3. Salt preserves, it is used in food to inhibit bacterial growth and one would assume it would have the same effect when used in a tank.

4. Salt changes the density of water and the osmotic exchange through tissues, this can be good to a certain point but in higher concentrations it will definitly be bad.

I have used salt with plecos and corys. A number of LFSs use it around here , some in quite high concentrations. I have been told to use it on new fish and have sometimes done so, however I have not noticed much difference one way or another in using it many times on a number of fish.

Another way salt is used is as an addition to the water when you are trying to simulate dry season and the early rainy season. Salts and minerals are usually washed down from trees and rocks , into the river and the early part of the rainy season actually contains quite bit of these disolved organics . By adding salt at the end of the dry season simulation and in the early rainy season you would potentially simulate what takes place in nature.

There may be more to the salt then just adding it - it could have something to do with the effects in combination with your local watersupply and this would explain why it works for some and not for others.

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Post by Barbie » Thu Dec 08, 2005 6:16 am

OK, first and foremost, I would NEVER recommend someone do something with their fish that I have not already done with my own. Because I also keep marine tanks, I own a refractometer. The dosage I recommended will not even reach 1.001 on that scale on the 3rd day. The stress you can potentially see I only had happen one time and it was on a tank of very young bristlenose that I'd exposed to Velvet when I added some fry to their tank from a friends house. I didn't lose any, but I DID notice they were retaining fluids. Hence, why I recommended a water change twice on that third day.

Many people recommend against using salt for catfish because it can be potentially lethal if overdosed. They are a soft water fish, they do not "need" salt as a tonic in their tanks, but that doesn't mean they don't tolerate it. I do not add salt to my tanks unless fish are sick and in need of treatment. Because it causes osmotic imbalance for the parasites as well as the fish, it can work in your favor, due to their much faster life cycle. I've treated my zebras on two separate occasions for parasites. Both times with salt and metro (which yes, works great for Ich and Velvet, IME at the dosage I recommended).

In my travels over the years I've kept MANY species of fish, not to mention the experiences I've had with the thousands of gallons of water in the stores I was managing. I know that my method is not necessarily the generally accepted one for dealing with problems in the hobby. It doesn't mean it doesn't work well, it just means most people haven't tried it.

On a side note here, NEVER use marine salt mixes for treating fish. They are specially formulated to raise and maintain water to a pH of 8.2-8.4, along with many trace elements and minerals that aren't normally found in FW. It would cause large bounces in parameters that you aren't going to get with plain old table salt. Yes, you can even used the iodized form. For those of you with shrimp, you'll find you have much fewer losses to problems with molting. Tanganyikan cichlids get problems that are caused by iodine deficiency also, believe it or not. The non iodized rule was a wives tale that's been perpetuated over the years. If you're worried, buy kosher salt. It's in the same section of the grocery store and would work fine. You can also buy pickling salt which can't have any heavy metals.

I have the same colony of adult zebras that I've had all the way along. I'm not killing them off by taking risks and replacing them or anything. The salt, metro, water changes, and heat method is VERY effective. My zebra breeders were literally COVERED in parasites when I got home from my vacation this summer. It IS the treatment I used for them, with 0 losses.

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Post by jerms55555 » Thu Dec 08, 2005 7:20 am

Thanks everyone even though this went on a little side track!!LOL....I guess everyone can learn something new everyday!
So I guess im going to treat the whole tank with metronidazole as barbie suggested and the higher temps and water changes(thanks to everyone). Also i took this picture to my friend who is a Discus breeder and he told me this is not ICH its some sort of fungus! I guess like velvet and gave me this dip treatment.... :shock: Formalin 3. And than told me to treat the tank with Mardel Freshwater Maracyn..Would that work as well??

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Post by Barbie » Thu Dec 08, 2005 7:55 am

Your friend might need new glasses. That's definitely ich. I would not switch treatments and I would not dip the fish. You're just going to stress them out worse than they already are with the parasites. Velvet is not a fungus btw, it's oodinium, another parasite. Don't use maracyn, as it's an antibiotic which will be totally ineffective against parasites. Keep using the metronidazole. It has some antibiotic properties anyway, so it does help with preventing secondary infections from the lesions caused by the ich attaching. Remember to remove carbon from your filters when you start any treatment like this.

As a side note, if you add pictures to a thread, please make a reply to the original ;). I hadn't gone back and read the first page when I posted last time, so I hadn't realized there was now a picture of the fish in question. You can also click edit to see how I "fixed" it so the picture would show as a picture in the thread :). You have the right idea, but you have to remove all that extraneous "photobucket" doodie that's attached around the url ;).

After rereading this thread, I'd like to add that fw fish are constantly under stress to KEEP the amount of salt in their systems, as the water outside them has less than they keep internally. For SW fish it's the opposite, a constant struggle to not get too much salt. For SW fish their internal salinity is close to 1.011 and they can tolerate a reduction in salinity to that level or a bit below for months at a time and it's used as a treatment for reducing stress on the fish and making parasites unable to plague them, without using actual chemical treatments. FW fish are supposed to be 1.007 or so (this was from a sw lecture, so I'm not sure of the accuracy) and I know I've seen fish from fw environments kept in REALLY saline conditions without detrimental effects. I wouldn't recommend salt of levels over 1.002 for catfish for any reason, as it DOES affect them more quickly, but lower levels have never caused me any problems or losses. I think the problem most people run into is not having accurate testing equipment to evaluate just how much is really in there to begin with. It used to be quite common practice for people to add salt to their tanks with every water change, no matter how infrequent ;).

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Post by Caesars » Thu Dec 08, 2005 6:00 pm

Tom2600 wrote:Caesars, the addition of low level salt reduces the osmotic stress on fish, it will not "flush" out parasites or "fight" disease. as far as I am aware there is no reason why salt would help a fish to respire...other than the reduction of its stress levels. Which is an indirect benefit.

There is no reason to use salt. Use a proven chemical treatment.
Tom2600 - I understand the electrolytes which salt adds in the water reduce osmotic pressure to the gills, making it easier for the fish to breathe. See for instance http://badmanstropicalfish.com/articles/article5.html - I also found the experiments cited here: http://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/p ... cle_id=392 interesting (particularly as they experimented with fish coming from the Amazon, though not catfish).

Here http://www.fishforever.co.uk/ich.html there is a warning about high levels of concentration of salt not been tolerated by some species. However I take it this is not a warning against salt, this is a warning against a lot of salt. Same goes for all medications - but when need be we are using them.

In short, it is understood that salt cannot be used carelessly in tropical tanks but that doesn't mean it harms the fish if used with care. Research proves quite the contrary.

Also to add that I have recently got same info as Barbie. There was a debate over the use of Marine Salt in tropical tanks mainly due to its concentration in iodine. However recent studies have shown that tropical fish need iodine as much as everybody else, or they start developing thyroid problems, which adversely affect their growth.

What I didn't know - Barbie you may want to shed some light on this one - is that the use of table salt is now considered ok. I was under the impression that table salt couldn't be used as anti-caking agents and other chemicals to refine it have been added to it. These chemicals were supposed to be dangerous for the fish. Have there been developments on this one?

Also, the higher possible permissible concentration of salt I have ever seen with reference to tropical fish (and that doesn't mean catfish - it is understood that different species are tolerant to different concentrations of salt) is 0.5 ppm as opposed to the 1.001 that Barbie cites - it would be interesting to see some references to this one, if possible.

Btw - this is getting to be a quite interesting debate and as the use of salt is an issue that a number of aquarists have considered maybe one of the administrators would consider moving it somewhere more appropriate - where it is more easily locateable?

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Post by Tom2600 » Fri Dec 09, 2005 3:36 am

This is certainly an interesting discussion and topic.

However, I have still heard nothing to suggest I should be using salt as a tonic for freshwater fish, especially with catfish. Personally, I very, very rarely treat my tank (sadly down to just the one now) with any chemicals. The last occasion was when I got four new discus which after a few days showed me they were suffering so I used a course of Metro.

Ultimately if you are having to treat your tank with a tonic salt this is normally a sign of a long term problem. There is also a secondary debate regarding long term background treatments i.e. salt and/or heat and the reduction of fish immunity? :wink:

IMO You simply cannot beat good regular water changes, a wealth of filteration, a good varied diet and quarantine for new fish.

I just won't take the risk of using salt with my catfish. BUT this topic is definitely one for the information archives. :D

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A QUICK UPDATE

Post by jerms55555 » Tue Dec 13, 2005 6:29 pm

They all pulled out of it just great!! Thanks everyone for taking the time to post and helping me out!
-Jeremy

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Post by Caesars » Tue Dec 13, 2005 8:56 pm

Way to go!!!!!!!! :D :D Well done to all of them (and you) -- wish them long and healthy lives!!!

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Post by Barbie » Tue Dec 13, 2005 8:59 pm

Congratulations! Now what exactly did you use to treat it? ;)

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Post by Tom2600 » Tue Dec 13, 2005 10:30 pm

Great news! :D

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Post by jerms55555 » Wed Dec 14, 2005 1:41 am

Well to be completely honest I just used the metronidazole that barbie stated and turned the temp up to 90-91 degrees and turned off the lights for about 6 days! Feed them probably twice durning that period and did not perform a water change til the fifth day(I did vacuumed the bottom roughly twice a day). I wasnt too sure about the salt since it was a hot debate! So maybe we should throw that in the sticky section and get a resolved answer.

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Post by inia » Wed Dec 14, 2005 7:05 am

Rising the temperature doesn't cure ich. You always need to use some medication.

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