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Bent Back Guppy...what gives?
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know_NOTHING
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Joined: 06 May 2005
Location: Monterey, CA

PostPosted: 2005.05.06(Fri)9:40    Post subject: Bent Back Guppy...what gives? Reply with quote

Hi all,
I've only been keeping fish(guppies and platys) for 2 months, and don't really know anyone that keeps any tropical tanks. I'm seeing if this forum is a good place for advice, so here goes:

I was recently at a friends house and saw that his roomate kept 2 guppies in 1 gal (or less) little tank. There was a fancy tailed female ( I think some sort of green cobra) and a pinkish male lyre-tail. There was no heater in the set-up, but the fish looked fine, if a little bored. Anyhow, I came back a week later to see that the lyre-tails back was bent at a sharp angle and he appeared lethargic, scooting around on the bottom of the tank, and only coming up to eat. I don't think the bent back is a birth-defect, as it wasn't present the first time I saw the guy.

So I may have screwed up BIG here, but the next day (last night) the roomate calls and ask if I want to put the bent back in my 10 gal (which currently houses a hand full of 2-month old female guppies) to see if the increased temp and presumably better water conditions do the trick. In a wave of sympathy for the little fish, I said 'yeah' and introduced the lame fish into my 10 gal. After doing some research this morning, now I'm worried I may have introduced fish TB into my 10. So far, the last 12 hours, the bent-back fish is exhibiting the same behavior in my tank.

Does anyone have any other diagnosis? Suggestions? Thanks
I've attached a fuzzy image, but it shows the bend.

Ben
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Tim McDonnell
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Joined: 25 Nov 2003
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PostPosted: 2005.05.06(Fri)13:09    Post subject: Reply with quote

First of all, Guppies should not be kept in less than a 10 gallon!

Second of all, the not having a heater will cause many many problems I.E.- Ich It is all a field for fish ich if there is not heater for tropical fish.

Last but not least this is EXTREMELY common in guppies. It is mainly due to poor water conditions. Like high ammonia levels and wrong pH.

This is basically like a scoliosis in fish.

Hope that I helped.
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BARBy
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Joined: 04 Dec 2004

PostPosted: 2005.05.06(Fri)19:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, I'm currently dealing with fish TB (see my thread:"help!anyone have experience with fish TB?") and the victims in my tank both started bending at the spine, and I know it came from a new oto (the 1st victim) and I know my tqnk is well maintained. This may or may not be your problem, but read my thread where several helpful people posted good info. Good luck in helping your fish.
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hs
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Joined: 20 Dec 2003

PostPosted: 2005.05.07(Sat)5:55    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't agree on the idea that having no heater in the tank with guppyes is going to give problems, - many people have excatly guppyes in unheated tanks, and they do fine. Of course providing the tank is in the living area, where even without a heater the temp. does not drop very much.
I have never had any problems with it, and never had ich, and don't know that there should be a connection.
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benedictj
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Joined: 05 Dec 2004
Location: new york, ny

PostPosted: 2005.05.07(Sat)6:47    Post subject: Reply with quote

HS is right, as long as the temperature of the room guppies are in allows for adequate water temp, a heater isn't entirely necessary.

As far as the ich thing goes, temperature does not directly cause ich. Ich must be present in a tank for it to take hold, so if it isn't present and the temp drops, you won't have an outbreak. (Temp, with ich present, can often act as the catalyst for an outbreak, stressing fish and allowing the ich to take hold).
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M249spence
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Joined: 25 Apr 2005
Location: arkansas

PostPosted: 2005.05.07(Sat)10:16    Post subject: Reply with quote

IMO, you should read up on BARBy's post about with fish TB. it could be a possibly serious situation b/c it can be passed on to humans through sores and cuts on your hands or arms if you stick them into a contaminated tank. I've never had any personal experiance with this species of the bacteria, but the genus in general, Mycobacterium, is extremely slow to reproduce and therefore hard to kill with antibiotics (hence why human Mycobacterium sp. diseases like human TB and leperosy are so hard to cure). here's a link about the disease:

http://www.adelaideaquariums.com.au/faqs/disease/showdis.asp?DiseaseID=9

I hope this was of some use
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know_NOTHING
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Joined: 06 May 2005
Location: Monterey, CA

PostPosted: 2005.05.07(Sat)22:44    Post subject: sicko seperated Reply with quote

Thanks for all the replies!

I'm hoping to rule out TB, but I'm not taking any chances and have moved 'the sick one' into a small quarantine tank within the 10 gal to take advantage of the heat without exposing the young guppies any longer than need be.

The lyre-tail seems to appear healthy on the exterior (aside from the back!) no sores or red anus. Could it just be that this fish has reached the end of it's life.

Tim M., you said that this is extremely common, do you have any cure suggestions? Thanks

Ben

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benedictj
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Joined: 05 Dec 2004
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PostPosted: 2005.05.07(Sat)23:22    Post subject: Reply with quote

You might actually want to drop the temperature back down to normal. Heat treatment is very effective for treating ich, but ich is not typically fatal (if treated). My concern is that by increasing the temp, you will actually promote growth of whatever bacterium this is. Also, prolonged temp changes can stress your fish, making them susceptable to other diseases.
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hs
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Joined: 20 Dec 2003

PostPosted: 2005.05.08(Sun)12:19    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it could also be old age...
Did your friend have them for a longer period, - and were 'new' fish introduced to that tank...
Just asking, because if they were well for a longer period, and no new fish were introduced, then why should it be TB ??
Could also be a question of bad watermaintenance over an extended period, as far as I know this can cause different types of weaknesses in fish
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M249spence
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Joined: 25 Apr 2005
Location: arkansas

PostPosted: 2005.05.08(Sun)21:33    Post subject: Reply with quote

so after reading this line of posts my wife and I went to wal-mart. as usual we took a quick trip to the pet section to look at the fish. the goldfish tank that they have had about 20 fishes in a pile on the bottom gasping for air, bent backs, some with sores all over them. there were fish like that in all the tanks...

yet another example of why you shouldn't buy your fish from wal-mart; go to your LFS instead!
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