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Ich - how long does it linger in the tank?
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Hjalti
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Joined: 25 Sep 2003
Location: Reykjavik, Iceland

PostPosted: 2007.01.01(Mon)10:40    Post subject: Ich - how long does it linger in the tank? Reply with quote

Hello,

SO I got ich in my tank, for the first time in 15 years of fishkeeping when I foolishly listened to m LFS's assurances that my 30 tiger barbs were treated successfully during quarantine. Anyhoo, I have a heavily planted 820L tank that I have invested a lot of work in. So far, only one fish has died, a botia, which are the most successful. All the other fish are OK, but it's still obvious that many still carry the parasite and aren't as frisky as they used to be.

I have been reading about the life cycle of the parasite and it sounds to me like it's very difficult to get rid of once it has settled in the tank. Any hard core treatments are out of the auestion for me due to my plants. My question, can I expect the parasite to ever leave for good, or will it always be lingering in the background?? Seems to me the parasite can always survive in the gravel and break out at a later time...
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ceci9293
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Joined: 24 Aug 2006
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: 2007.01.01(Mon)11:48    Post subject: Reply with quote

As long as there are live fish in your tank for the ich to feed on they will continue breeding. Try the heat treatment described in the Articles section here. It worked for me!

Be sure you keep the heat, darkness, and water changes up for the full 10 days so that all the eggs have had a chance to hatch and live their whole life cycle. The heat will keep them from breeding so that no more eggs will be deposited in the gravel.

I read somewhere that the ich might be able to stay dormant on the glass or something, but so far no signs of that in my tank. I'm hoping some part of the heat, darkness, or water changes kept them from going into the dormant state.
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Cathy G
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Joined: 27 Jan 2006
Location: Wisconsin

PostPosted: 2007.01.01(Mon)12:07    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi,
I feel your pain...

Do the heat thing as was suggested. Make sure your whole tank is kept hot though, that there are NO cool spots. Add extra oxygen! Get a bubble wand/airstone or something going to create more surface agitation. It will be much easier for the fish to survive if you do this. I'd also add some salt - I know it is a planted tank, perhaps you can check over at the plant forum to find out how much/little salt to add so as not to harm the plants. The usual recommendation for ich is 2 teaspoons per gallon... but that will probably be too much for plants.

Another option is to set up another tank - if you have a QT tank, could you add all the fish to it? Then skip the salt in the planted tank and treat the fish in QT. IF the temps are high in the planted tank, that will speed up the life cycle and as the cysts hatch they won't find a host and will starve to death. I'd keep the planted tank fish free for 3 -4 weeks to make sure...

Good Luck,
Cathy
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Hjalti
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Joined: 25 Sep 2003
Location: Reykjavik, Iceland

PostPosted: 2007.01.08(Mon)17:59    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, thanks for the advice. Cathy, don't think moving the fish to another tank is an option. The tank is auite heavily planted. I had to show great patience to be able to remove one of my SAE with dropsy from the tank a while back. I think I'd go absolutly loony if I tried removing them all. When you guys talk about raising the te
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Cathy G
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Joined: 27 Jan 2006
Location: Wisconsin

PostPosted: 2007.01.08(Mon)19:08    Post subject: Reply with quote

At LEAST 86. Depending on your fish, you can go higher... for example rams, angels, some tetras... etc. Be sure to add extra oxygen. My husbands tank got ich, we kept temps up at 88-89 for 1 month! We did have salt in there and 2 extra airstones, one of which was a bubble wand. No fatalities, and no returning ich - its been months now! Heat/salt work.
Cathy
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ceci9293
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Joined: 24 Aug 2006
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: 2007.01.08(Mon)19:19    Post subject: Reply with quote

I set my tank at 91F for 3 days (All I had in there at the time was platies,) then down to 86F for 7 days after that. (By the way, if the Celsius/Farenheit thing is confusing, I have this page bookmarked and it really helps me: WorldWideMetric.)

I never added any salt or medications at all. I kept a blanket over the tank at all times except during water changes. I kept the water level about an inch lower than normal so that the filter itself provided plenty of aeration.

I started treatment in my tank on 12/22/06, finished it on New Year's Eve, didn't lose a single fish, and we're still totally ich free in there.
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tylermb20
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Joined: 08 Dec 2006

PostPosted: 2007.01.10(Wed)20:54    Post subject: Reply with quote

ceci9293 wrote:
I set my tank at 91F for 3 days (All I had in there at the time was platies,) then down to 86F for 7 days after that. (By the way, if the Celsius/Farenheit thing is confusing, I have this page bookmarked and it really helps me: WorldWideMetric.)

I never added any salt or medications at all. I kept a blanket over the tank at all times except during water changes. I kept the water level about an inch lower than normal so that the filter itself provided plenty of aeration.

I started treatment in my tank on 12/22/06, finished it on New Year's Eve, didn't lose a single fish, and we're still totally ich free in there.


A easier way for C to F conversion is look at the bottom of this page.
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ceci9293
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Joined: 24 Aug 2006
Location: Austin, TX

PostPosted: 2007.01.14(Sun)0:29    Post subject: Reply with quote

tylermb20 wrote:
A easier way for C to F conversion is look at the bottom of this page.


LOL! How did I never see that?? Thanks for pointing it out. Wink
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