Please HELP diagnose clownfish

Discussion in 'Saltwater Fish' started by Sylvester, Feb 14, 2019.

  1. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    I am sorry to start another sick fish post but i can't find anything related to the problem i am having. I have an IM20 (20g) reef tank. I have only tried to maintain 2 clowns in this tank land lost 3 to date and now i am down to one clown which has been in the tank by himself for exactly 1 month today. And just like the others.. after about 3 to 4 weeks in the tank they start to hide under the rock, eating ceases, respiratory problems begin, and they die. My latest clown has just started to hide and his eating has slowed down. I can only assume this has to be an internal parasite because he looks healthy on the outside. I hate to lose another fish and I don't want it to suffer. Any advice would be appreciated.

    Tank Age - 5 months
    temp 77.5
    Ammonia ND
    Nitrite ND
    Nitrate ND
    Snails, Crabs, corals
    20190214_1115542.jpg 20190214_1116001.jpg 20190214_1115573.jpg
     
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  2. DaveK

    DaveK Well-Known Member

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    If you had wild caught clowns with more or less normal color patterns, I'd say maybe to internal parasites, but you have a tank raised clown with an unusual color pattern. Usually fish like this are very well cared for, since losses result in a lot of lost money for the breeder.

    I don't see any obvious problems with the fish or the tank in the picts you post.

    Here are a few things I would check. In the disease area SW ich, SW velvet, and clownfish disease are by far the most common. Google the diseases and look for picts of them, and see if anything matches your fish.

    Non disease things to check out. Make sure there is nothing toxic getting into the tank. Look for any cleaners being used around the tank. Also look for other sources of contamination. Any kids dumping stuff in the tank? Over use of various additives? Any metal parts in the filtration system? Sometimes people use brass or copper fittings in the aquarium plumbing, and in SW that can be very toxic.

    Check for any hitchhikers that might be going after the fish. Many crabs can come in very small and grow into a monster. Also mantis shrimp can go after fish.

    While I don't think it's a problem, check what your feeding. Maybe the food size is too large. Sometimes frozen food have gone bad.

    I don't think this is a problem either, but check out the filtration system and water circulation system. Perhaps your not getting enough flow. Make sure there are no dead areas around any rocks. Check any media you are using. Some low grade media can release some bad stuff, especially carbon that has not been properly stored. Also look for any areas of the substrata that may have gone anaerobic. If you have the tank on a stand, and your have a clear glass bottom, you can look up at the base of the substrata and look for very black looking areas.
     
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  3. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    Thank You! i will go over everything you listed and report back. He is still eating at this time (although less enthusiastic) but i am so paranoid after losing 3 clowns to seemingly the same fate.
     
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  4. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    So good news is the fish has been out for the last several hours and looking good. Maybe I am just too paranoid after the last 3 losses :(. I will observe for now.

    And thank you again for your help.
     
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  5. Uncle99

    Uncle99 Well-Known Member

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    Your post can describe SW Ick, velvet or ammonia.
    Keep a careful watch, if this one shows the signs you mention above at any time, do not wait, get him into a QT and treat immediately.

    Also watch for scratching, lethargic swimming, and glassy eyes.

    I might consider running carbon in case theirs some toxin in the water.
     
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  6. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    Thank you for all the replies. All has been great with my small clown. It had been over a month with no problems so i added my 2nd clown. He is eating and "seems" ok but has had a single cloudy eye for the past 5 days. I started feeding him API general cure with Focus on frozen food also for the past 5 days. doesn't seem to help. I am setting up a hospital tank right now but in the meantime i gave him a FW dip today which also did not help the eye. I plan on putting him in hospital tank with Kanoplex. Any other suggestions would be really appreciated.

    Lesson learned... my hospital tank will be my QT from now on. 20190307_163217.jpg
     
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  7. Photofemme5

    Photofemme5 New Member

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    I empathize with you. I lost three snowflake clowns and a Benggai Cardinalfish to the same fate in January. I collected their little bodies and took them to my LFS for examination. The owner told me that it was ich. I never imagined, however, that ich could kill them so quickly. I treated my tank appropriately and waited. I have since put in three seahorses and for five weeks now everything has been hunky-dory. I am currently cycling a new 32 gallon Biocube and will be turning my 16 gallon Biocube into my quarantine tank. Being a new reefer myself, my advice for any other new reefers would be to get a hospital tank up and running at the same time you are cycling your viewing tank....and dip, dip, dip! Good luck with you:)
     
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  8. Photofemme5

    Photofemme5 New Member

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    DEC91E70-87A7-4F0C-82DD-03C0837BB60F.jpeg Me again. These were two of my babies. My heart ached when I lost my black ice clowns/cardinal. You can get attached to them!
     
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  9. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    Thanks and sorry for your loss. Yes, my hospital/QT tank is cycling now. I guess we all learn the hard way.
     
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  10. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    Update.. transferred the clown with cloudy eye to a hospital tank. He had already not been eating for almost a week and breathing rapidly for days. I treated the tank with API general cure but it either did not work or it was just too late. Now my young designer clown is sick. He is not eating and moving slower.

    He is in a hospital tank with just prazo. After speaking with a LFS rep he indicated he is seeing large numbers of clowns infected with a new parasite that attacks the gills. He said many confuse "not eating" with an internal parasite when in fact the fish stops eating because of discomfort/difficulty with gills/breathing. It makes sense because I have already lost 5 fish this same way... stop eating..and breathe more rapid every day until death. He recommended Metroplex so i beginning treatment today. Hoping its not too late. Just not sure why the FW dip didn't help if this is a gill infestation.
     
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  11. nanoreefing4fun

    nanoreefing4fun Well-Known Member
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    how would the
    ... a new parasite get in your tank? always doubt most lfs advise...
     
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  12. nanoreefing4fun

    nanoreefing4fun Well-Known Member
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  13. nanoreefing4fun

    nanoreefing4fun Well-Known Member
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  14. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    This is great help thank youj.
     
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  15. Uncle99

    Uncle99 Well-Known Member

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    Becoming lathargic and/or not eating is a definite sign of fish in stress.

    Parasite that attacks gills first is velvet and kills fast, so maybe 36-48 hours if not treated by a copper product. Once the tiny sugar size circles is seen, it's usually too late, they are in the gills and suffocate.

    Ick attaches anywhere, but can also hit the gills as they are free swimming and " breathed" through. Ick is a much slower killer, but again, only TTM, Hypo or a copper based product will cure this parasite. In addition, whenever your fish have either parasite, they ARE in your DT, so this must be kept fishless for 72 days.

    Metroplex and the other 20 or so treat only for bacterial problems, they do nothing for parasites.

    So if your problem is bacterial, Metroplex should work.

    If fish are lathargic and rapid breathing, in QT, you can lower the salinity to 1.019, that will make them more comfortable.
     
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    Last edited: Mar 14, 2019
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  16. Sylvester

    Sylvester New Member

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    Update... I lost the sick clown. Copper didn't seem to help or it was too late. The small designer clown also stopped eating and became lethargic while in my display. I moved him to a hospital tank with metroplex and prazipro. Within 2 days he started eating again. I have not dosed a 2nd round of prazipro yet since i have been dosing metro every 48 hours and i heard these might not be good to mix. Fish seems happy and i added a new clown since my QT is established. Both fish are very happy and eating. My plan is to continue the metro for 10 days and then switch over to the prazipro. I am wondering however, if i should go back to prazipro now because everything i have read suggests this was likely a fluke that was killing all my fish.

    My display will stay fallow for 72 days.
     
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  17. DaveK

    DaveK Well-Known Member

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    If things are working as is, don't mess with success.
     
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