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    Treating ICH with salt, have rtbs, live plants & pleco

    Discussion in 'Freshwater Diseases and Health Issues' started by sirbin2000, Nov 9, 2010.

    1. sirbin2000

      sirbin2000 MFK Members

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      I was wondering if I can use regular salt bought at a grocery store and also If it is safe with a red tailed shark, albino bushynose pleco, and if it will kill my live plants or if they will be ok after the salt treatment is over?
       
    2. cichlid fiend

      cichlid fiend MFK Members

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      Just turn ur heat up and keep it at 78-82(alll the time) and youll never see ich again!
       
    3. sirbin2000

      sirbin2000 MFK Members

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      also, are shrimp and underwater frogs affected by ich or do i not need to worry about it and not treat them?
       
    4. aclockworkorange

      aclockworkorange MFK Members

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      A lot of ich is resistant to the salt heat treatment due to practices in the industry making resistant strains.
      Alternative treatments would be formagreen or quinine. Not sure how they affect a planted tank. Anyone?
       
    5. drb

      drb MFK Members

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      I have never heard of amphibians getting the Ich. however your shrimp should be fine with the salt/heat treatment.

      as for the resistant strains, there are some strains of Ich that will actually survive higher temperatures all the way up to 86 degrees. I used to have an old heater that did not have any temperature limits, my baby oscar was fine in 90 degree water for 4 days, it got rid of the ich alright.
       
    7. sirbin2000

      sirbin2000 MFK Members

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      Ok, I set up a quarantine tank and put everyone in it, I'm going to treat the main tank with the plants with Ick Attack and maybe some salt, I'll treat the quarantine tank with Ick Attack and also salt, temp turned up in both tanks. Hopefully they'll be back to normal in a few weeks.
       
    8. Lupin

      Lupin Viviendo la vida loca!

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      Sirbin, what species are your shrimps? The frogs and shrimps will be fine.

      Are the RTBS and BN pleco your only fish? If so, moving them out is a good move. Treat them there and leave your planted setup fishless for 2 weeks. Maintain temperature there at 80-82 degrees Fahrenheit. Ich cannot survive without fish as host for more than 48 hours. No need to dump meds in a fishless tank.

      Please do NOT combine salt with any other meds especially ones containing formalin. Formalin and salt are a toxic combination. Keep water well aerated since the elevated temperature and meds can quickly deplete their oxygen supply and plecos are prone to this issue especially as the ich can attack their gill tissues. Be sure you DISSOLVE salt before adding to the tank.
       
    9. Lupin

      Lupin Viviendo la vida loca!

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    10. Lupin

      Lupin Viviendo la vida loca!

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      White Spot Disease (Ichthyophthirius multifiliis)
      Synonyms:
      Ich, Ick

      Symptoms:
      Early signs of white spot begin when fish flick themselves against rocks. They may also swimming in an odd behaviour as if they were trying to use the water to wash away an irritation. Some of the more common causes are stress, bad water conditions, live food that have been infected by the pathogens or already infected fish without quarantining it.

      Description:
      Ich is a protozoal infection that afflicts fish and can rapidly kill them, most often by damaging gill tissue. It is highly infectious and potentially lethal and manifests as tiny white spots all over the fish. The spots are no larger than grains of salt. The wide host range of this parasite is its life cycle, and speed of multiplication especially in a tropical aquarium. When you see the white spot on your fish, it is already too late for those ich particles to be avoided.

      The organisms, trophonts goes through a life cycle of a small white spot feeding on your fish which drops off to the floor of your tank and encases itself in a cyst called tomont. While encased in a cyst, it divides into up to 2000 new mobile organisms called theronts. The cyst then ruptures, thus releasing the theronts which seek out a host to feed into. They must locate a host within 24 hours otherwise they will die. Only the mobile stage is vulnerable to treatments.

      Ich will appear if the fish is stressed. Note that it acts more as a 'contaminant' and is not part of the tank's ecosystem. Any new fish should be quarantined for 2-4 weeks. Failing that will increase the risk of introducing diseases which wil affect other occupants. New fish are always possible carriers of diseases.

      Treatment:
      Salt
      Instructions
      Increase the temperature to at least 84-86 degrees as much as the fish can tolerate. Add aquarium or table salt (dissolved in water) at a ratio of 1-3 teaspoons of salt per gallon of water in your tank equivalent to 0.1-0.3% depending on the tolerance level of your fish.

      For basic procedures, here are the steps.
      1. Dose one teaspoon per gallon of salt or equivalent to 0.1%.
      2. After 12 hours and assuming the fish has tolerated it very wellso far, repeat step 1.
      3. After another 12 hours, repeat step 1 again.

      While waiting, it does not hurt to add a powerhead or airstone to increase the oxygen level. Over the first couple days, your fish will appear worse and will eventually recover as the treatment progresses. In most cases, ich will disappear on the sixth day. However, there is still a probability that some cysts have not yet ruptured so it is advisable to keep the treatment up for full ten days.

      If you are not able to raise the temperature at all especially if you are dealing with fish that lack tolerance for temperature above 80 degrees Fahrenheit, you may need to extend the treatment although a good general guideline is to continue 7-10 more days of treatment right after the ich had seemingly disappeared.. At 85 degrees Fahrenheit, the life cycle of ich is quicker. The colder the temperature, the slower the life cycle thus the treatment will extend even longer than required.

      Level of Tolerance
      For bottom dwellers such as plecos and loaches, you may need to maintain the saline solution at 0.1-0.2% so it will not be detrimental to them although there have been few instances where some catfishes can tolerate as much as 0.3%.

      Do make sure your fish can tolerate the elevated saline solution. If in doubt, be prepared to do a water change to relieve the fish of the osmotic stress caused by the salt. Try not to lose focus on the actual saline solution you already administered or you might end up overdosing the salt more than it was necessary.

      Clown loaches and young oscars are notorious for getting ich after they are transferred to your tank. These and many others can tolerate salt. If you are unsure about your fish’s tolerance for salt, be sure to look for answers in a reference book or ask an expert.

      A salt test kit available at your local fish store will help you get the exact dosage. Something in the range of .2%, is where you want to be.

      Water Changes vs. Salt
      Should a water change be necessary, make sure you redose the salt solution per the water volume replaced.

      For example, a 10g needs 30 teaspoons at 3 teaspoons per gallon of water measurement. If you wish to change at least 50% of the water, then another 15 teaspoons of salt should be redosed to keep the saline solution effective against the parasites.

      Teaspoon vs. Tablespoon Measurement
      For those not familiar with the teaspoon = tablespoon conversion, a leveled heap of tablespoon is equivalent to 3 teaspoons whereas a round heap of tablespoon is equivalent to 5 teaspoons.

      In Australian standard, a tablespoon is equivalent to four teaspoons so please adjust the necessary dosage as much as possible.

      Plants Goners Or Not?
      Unfortunately many plants do not do well with this salt treatment and may appear to wither but will usually come back in time once the salt treatment is over. Removing them to a salt free environment after a thorough rinsing may save them, however they must be kept at a high temperature or for an extended period of time. When the cyst breaks up in the plant holding tank, the small parasites will be unable to find a host and will die within 24-72 hours depending on the environmental conditions. Ich is easily transferred to other fish tanks so do not share nets, heaters and wet hands between infected and non infected tanks.

      Mutual Relationship of Bacteria vs. Ich
      Abstract explaining the presence of endosymbiotic bacteria within ich and bacteria with mutual relationship towards ich developing its infective capability can be found here.
      http://thegab.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=20210

      Other Treatments:
      Malachite Green, Formalin

      Do NOT combine formalin and salt.

      Check this list for contraindications of the above treatments.
      http://monsterfishkeepers.com/forums...d.php?t=295289

      Authors:
      Lupin
      Anythingfish
      ChileRelleno
      guppy
      SkepticalAquarist.com
      Tokis-Phoenix

      Discussion Thread:
      http://www.monsterfishkeepers.com/fo...ad.php?t=20681
       

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