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Help Ick that Won't Go Away.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 9:22am
Update: So I picked up an ozone unit and an ORP probe from MSM last night. I'm currently waiting for the ORP to settle in before I switch on the Ozone. While I was their they had a big ole' cleaner shrimp so I picked it up hoping it would help clean the fish. After drip acclimating it I popped it in and within about 30 minutes he was cleaning the remaining tangs so that's awesome right? I removed some water and let my top off fill it back up with fresh but I didn't test salinity (I don't think it dropped it too much, I removed about 3 gallons and I'll do it again today hoping for a gradual reduction in salinity). I've also been keeping the temp at a steady 80 degrees.

Here's a questions- Would a high PH result in fish stress? I ask because it is the only thing in my tank that has changed. I noticed last night my AC Apex was showing a PH shifts up to 8.9. I believe it's peaked because of the addition of a fresh MH lightbulb, a bunch of bubbles in the tank due to not swapping out my poly bag last week, but most of all I dossed some dkh buffer to help boost my alk several weeks ago (it worked but I think a little too well).

Lowering the salinity has lowered the PH to around 8.6, I've swapped out the poly bag so no more bubbles, I've turned off 2 of my 3 MH lights, and I'll be doing a water change this weekend so I think that will help as well but I'm no chemist. If you guys have opinions on how to shift it (or even if I should worry about it) please lt me know. Normally it hangs around 8.45.

Let me know what you think and thank you a ton!


Micah
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bur01014 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 10:10am
Originally posted by Molli Molli wrote:

Originally posted by bur01014 bur01014 wrote:


[

Please don't take offense, but this is one of the biggest myths out there...quarantine reduces your chances of carrying disease into your tank, but is far from 100%... evidence is non-existent on coral dips and ich, one small droplet of tank water from an LFS on a coral could carry ich into your tank....quarantine is far from a guarantee.

lol, guess I can't quote someone rightEmbarrassed
I guess you must not have understood what I do.  I quarantine my corals without any fish in that tank many weeks -- if ich was brought in in the water attached to the coral. the lifecycle for it would have come and gone way before I put my corals in my tank.    I don't tank offense, but I think advice like you have given is off the charts for newbies on here.  They keep hearing from some of you that quarantining is a waste of time.  Its NOT a waste of time.


I just said quarantine isn't a 100% guarantee...nothing about being a "waste of time"....

However, now that you mentioned it though, it is a waste of time, IMO.....the effort, time, and resources needed to have a properly running quarantine system for both fish and corals out of a home can be daunting and IMO outweigh the potential benefits and risks for not quarantining.  I only feel I can say this, because during my early years in the hobby I had a full-time quarantine system.  The hobby became unmanageable and I did not see the benefits.  This isn't for everyone though, some people have good success with quarantine systems, but the beauty of these forums is to share advice with fellow reefers that has worked for you.

I don't purposely try to mislead "newbies" like you say...but perhaps you should take a poll on here to see how many of the "oldies" actually and truthfully have properly running quarantine systems in their homes.  I think you'd find it to be less than 50%.   Furthermore, the difference in fish survival and coral health between both types of hobbyists would not be statistically significant.  In other words, people have success both routes. 

Now back to the issue....how are those fish Sculpin? 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bur01014 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 10:12am
Originally posted by Sculpin Sculpin wrote:

Update: So I picked up an ozone unit and an ORP probe from MSM last night. I'm currently waiting for the ORP to settle in before I switch on the Ozone. While I was their they had a big ole' cleaner shrimp so I picked it up hoping it would help clean the fish. After drip acclimating it I popped it in and within about 30 minutes he was cleaning the remaining tangs so that's awesome right? I removed some water and let my top off fill it back up with fresh but I didn't test salinity (I don't think it dropped it too much, I removed about 3 gallons and I'll do it again today hoping for a gradual reduction in salinity). I've also been keeping the temp at a steady 80 degrees.

Here's a questions- Would a high PH result in fish stress? I ask because it is the only thing in my tank that has changed. I noticed last night my AC Apex was showing a PH shifts up to 8.9. I believe it's peaked because of the addition of a fresh MH lightbulb, a bunch of bubbles in the tank due to not swapping out my poly bag last week, but most of all I dossed some dkh buffer to help boost my alk several weeks ago (it worked but I think a little too well).

Lowering the salinity has lowered the PH to around 8.6, I've swapped out the poly bag so no more bubbles, I've turned off 2 of my 3 MH lights, and I'll be doing a water change this weekend so I think that will help as well but I'm no chemist. If you guys have opinions on how to shift it (or even if I should worry about it) please lt me know. Normally it hangs around 8.45.

Let me know what you think and thank you a ton!


Micah


You running a fuge light at all?  If so, what hours?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Molli Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 10:35am
Originally posted by bur01014 bur01014 wrote:



I just said quarantine isn't a 100% guarantee...nothing about being a "waste of time"....

However, now that you mentioned it though, it is a waste of time

I'll just chalk this up to we all have different ways of taking care of our animals.  I give as much preventative care as I can -- I'm that way with my horses, dogs and cat as well.  I think that prevention is well worth the time and energy.  But that's just how I do things.  Oh its how I take care of my house as well LOL.  Perhaps this comes from my past career in working in nuclear energy, where its not wise to wait until something breaks! LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BobC63 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 10:38am
A pH of 8.9 is way high and will definitely stress everything out.
 
Even 8.6 is too high. I'd say 8.4 is about the limit.
 
 
Are you sure your probe is functioning properly?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 11:04am
I'm pretty sure the probe is functioning properly but I plan to recalibrate it soon. Even uncalibrated if my PH was showing 8.9 at its peak that could definitely explain the stress on the fish and why they would get an ick breakout. They've had ick before but a little more feeding with some garlic always has cured the issue (except for this time of course. Plus, it would make sense that I would get a PH spike if I overdosed with the DKH buffer. That is scary stuff and I'll have to admit I got a little liberal with it.

I'm at work right now but when I get off I'll see how things are rolling and update you guys. As far as what my apex is telling me right now: Temp 79.9 PH 8.61


Micah


Edited by Sculpin - October 19 2012 at 11:06am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote improdigal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 11:35am
I'm surprised it hasn't been mentioned yet, but I'm seeing alot of good side helpers to the ick problem, but I haven't seen any suggest the natural and most effective method yet.  

Ich Outbreak = time to buy an small army of cleaner shrimp LOL

I've had a few bouts of ich in my tank when it was early on, and one really bad one once.  I did the garlic food, but that really just speeds up the ich lifecycle. They jump off the fish cause they don't like the garlic taste, but then they just swim to another host.

As soon as I mentioned it to a pro they said to go buy some shrimps and wrasse and they'll be fine.   So I bought probably 4 peppermint shrimp (cheap), a couple normal cleaner shrimp, a fire shrimp, and a banded coral shrimp (hey, I like shrimp).   

Fount the peppermint shrimp didn't do much, and the banded coral shrimp are too rough (would try to take chunks of the fish along with the ich), but the rest of the shrimp became the fishies best friends... and it was totally hilarious to watch.  

Any fish that had Ich would swim up to a shrimp and wait... the shrimp would hop on their side/back and start eating the ich off.  Sometimes, we would watch a tang swim around for 30 seconds with a shrimp latched on his side eating away... happy as a clam.   And the fireshrimp LOL... he had his own cave, that has forever since been nicknamed "the carwash"... fish would literally BACK THEMSELVES into his cave,  he would climb around the walls, hop on their back... eat a few, hop back on the walls crawl up and over to the other side, hop on and eat... absolutely hilarious to watch... as soon as the ich was gone.. fish would swim off with a smile.  

Ich was gone.. in probably 1-2 weeks and never came back.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 12:05pm
Good advice improdigal, I did just pick up a cleaner shrimp last night and it already has been working on the fish.

Knowing that I already had ick years before this got bad I knew there was a bigger issue going on and I hope I've found it. We'll see when I get off work how things are progressing.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wickedsnowman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 12:54pm
What is your alk? Why are you dosing the buffer is that what you use for your alk supplementation?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 1:12pm
My alk is now at 14 dkh (checked a week ago so it's probably a bit lower now). I've not dosed since. I was dosing because it was down to 7.8 dkh (if I remember correctly) before several doses of buffer about a month ago. The mistake I made was dosing twice over the month without checking the dkh on the second dose. I think that is were I got in trouble.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BobC63 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 1:14pm
Micah -
 
Did you say you raised your alk from 8.6 to 14 within one month, and you did it by dosing 2 times within that month?
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bur01014 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 1:17pm
wow, this is definitely an issue!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 1:20pm
It may of been over a month and a half actually and my dosage was likely more concentrated then I usually do. The big issue was that I was lazy (i.e. I didn't keep track of when, how much, and how often I dosed). I saw low dkh, dosed heavy and am now in this mess. Plus I didn't realize high ph had such a negative effect on fish.


Micah


Edited by Sculpin - October 19 2012 at 1:22pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BobC63 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: October 19 2012 at 1:27pm
Yeah, just remember to dose in amounts that will not raise your alk by more than 1.0 dkh at a time. That will defintitely stress things out if you jumped an average of 3.0 dkh per dose
 
And the high pH is an issue, but also the swing in pH as well.  pH should not change more than 0.1 per 24 hour period through chemical means. Yours sounds like it may have been swinging as much as 0.3 or 0.4 daily
 
How are all your corals handling these changes? Do you have alot of SPS?
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 01 2012 at 11:56am
So I thought I'd pop back in and give you guys an update. So after losing a powder blue tang, yellow tang, lemark angle, kleins butterfly, 3 clownfish, an anthia, and a royal gramma things seems to be settling down and almost back to normal. I've not done a water test recently but the PH is stabilized at 8.5 and the salinity was brought down to 1.022. The tank seems way empty though. all we have left is a firefish, a sailfin tang, and a blue tang.

My mom took it pretty hard and doesn't want to get any new fish for a while and if we do we will quarantine every one of them.

As for the coral, they have faired great through this process and I have seen no problems what so ever. I'm still pretty confused as to what went wrong but whatever it was I hope we are past it now. We havent had any more deaths for about a week now (knock on wood).
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Unless you remove all fish from you tank for 8 weeks (some will say less, some will say more) then quarantining new fish will do nothing to deal with the ich you have in your tank and you will still have ich in your tank. It will however make sure any new fish you may add to your tank are healthy and have a better chance at dealing with the ich in the tank and they may show no symptoms unless they get stressed or sick.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Molli Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 01 2012 at 12:26pm
Originally posted by Sculpin Sculpin wrote:

So I thought I'd pop back in and give you guys an update. So after losing a powder blue tang, yellow tang, lemark angle, kleins butterfly, 3 clownfish, an anthia, and a royal gramma things seems to be settling down and almost back to normal. I've not done a water test recently but the PH is stabilized at 8.5 and the salinity was brought down to 1.022. The tank seems way empty though. all we have left is a firefish, a sailfin tang, and a blue tang.
 
If there is any way possible for you to remove the remaning 3 fish and put them in a hospital tank for an ample quarantine period and treat them for ich, this is your opportunity to finally rid your tank of ich.  Sorry you lost so many fish during this ordeal.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sculpin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 25 2012 at 2:05am
I know there will still be ick but to be honest I'm not terribly worried. I've always had ick in my tank ever since I can remember, I just have never seen it this bad. My theory is that I either brought in a new strain of ick with the recent addition of fish or something changed in the tank environment that stressed all the fish causing an outbreak.

That said I'd love to get all the fish out and put in my QT but the fact is I would have to rip appart the whole tank just to get to them. I did think about fishing out my two remaining tangs with a very very small hook (i've done it once before) but I still have a firefish that is very timid and I don't think I could catch it.

I have set up Ozone on the tank, stabilized all my parameters, and the remaining fish have shown no signs of ick for the past month. I've already purchased a few fish and have them waiting in my QT tank and after a few weeks of observation, if they are healthy I'll pop them in one at a time in the display and see how they handle it.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bluespotjawfish Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: November 25 2012 at 6:25am
Any time you make changes in the tank you stress the fish. Regular consistent maintenance and automation of your dosing will go a long way to reducing stress n your fish and corals. If you dont take the remaining fish out and treat dont bother buying new fish. They will be stressed and succomb to the ich. They will also stress out your existing fish and they could die as well. So, enjoy the ones you have if you dont want to bother.
Do you run a uv sterilizer?
I have had better luck with lower temps than high temps. Run mine at 78. Consistency is the key though.
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