Overnight Dorsal Fin Collapse And Discoloration On Pearl Gourami - Please Help! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 09:20 PM Thread Starter
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Overnight Dorsal Fin Collapse And Discoloration On Pearl Gourami - Please Help!

Hey guys!

So this is my first incident on my first fish in my first tank. My tank is heavily planted and was recently cycled and I've had ammonia: 0 ppm, nitrites: 0 ppm and nitrates: 5-10 ppm for over a week. I added 2 pearl gouramis (1 male and the other seems to be a female but I'm unsure) and 3 otocinclus as my first fish and they've been doing great. I feed them JBL Novo Bea, Hikari Tropical Micro Pellets and Hikari Mini Algae Wafers for the otos.

I woke up this morning with a strange sight. His entire dorsal fin seems to be chopped off or collapsed. I know this happened overnight because I was contrasting the two pearls' dorsal fins yesterday when trying to sex them and they were both fine. Throughout the day today, his coloring on his throat/chin has been fading considerably and he is now completely void of color on his throat.

I searched online and the main culprit seems to be fin rot, which can be due to water parameters and ammonia poisoning. I immediately tested my water fearing an ammonia spike but all the results seem perfect. 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, 5 nitrates and 7.2 pH as always.

I've attached a picture of my tank aquascape and the current condition of my male pearl gourami. This is quite literally my second month in the hobby and I didnt expect my apparently "hardy" pearl gourami to experience this.

Can anyone please tell me what is going on here? and what action I need to take? A part of me is really hoping that he simply cut it on a piece of driftwood while swimming around the tank.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 10:28 PM
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This is a very small photo, details are not visible. It seems that he just squeezed his fin - they (pretty much all fish) often do this if feel sick or uncomfortable. Seems to be male but, again, need a better photo.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-14-2019, 10:31 PM
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You added these fish after fully cycled?
The fish that you added- which groups at which time? How long ago?

There were no ammonia or nitrIte readings at any time after adding fish?

How many water changes and volume of water changes since tank established with no ammonia or nitrates- but nitrAte reading?

Any aggression between fish?
It looks to me like the dorsal is completely gone ? Fin rot of that extent takes longer than overnight.

Is the fish eating?


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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 03:47 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
You added these fish after fully cycled?
The fish that you added- which groups at which time? How long ago?

There were no ammonia or nitrIte readings at any time after adding fish?

How many water changes and volume of water changes since tank established with no ammonia or nitrates- but nitrAte reading?

Any aggression between fish?
It looks to me like the dorsal is completely gone ? Fin rot of that extent takes longer than overnight.

Is the fish eating?


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Yeah I bout the 2 pearls and the 3 ottos and put them in at the same time (about a week after I finished cycling). I've been chcking ammonia, nitrite and nitrate readings continuously and theyve been great as I said above. I did a water change right before going to buy the fish and havent done one since. Well, this now apparantly sick male has been bullying and chasing around my other pear (presumably female) since I bought them so I dont see how the other pearl could have done this... Also he's been eating perfectly fine. But when I checked on him this morning, he seems to be hanging about in the lower part of the tank near the substrate while the other smaller pearl is staying way up high near the surface
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 04:17 AM
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Do you have a quarantine tank?

180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
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30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 04:45 AM Thread Starter
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UPDATE: I just tried to feed them a small pinch of flake food and he didn’t want any of it. The other pearl gobbled them up. He’s not moving to the surface at all... this is him now.
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 04:45 AM Thread Starter
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Do you have a quarantine tank?
Unfortunate not
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 05:01 AM
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If he is not moving and not eating the area has probably become infected. That is the problem with injuries such as these- they can easily get secondary bacteria and turn septic. I would treat with kanamycin- active ingredient in Seachem Kanaplex. You will need to change at least 25-50% water before each dose to keep the tank low in organics so that the medication isn't offset by organics in water.

180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 07:57 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
If he is not moving and not eating the area has probably become infected. That is the problem with injuries such as these- they can easily get secondary bacteria and turn septic. I would treat with kanamycin- active ingredient in Seachem Kanaplex. You will need to change at least 25-50% water before each dose to keep the tank low in organics so that the medication isn't offset by organics in water.
Hi again,

I've literally just checked on the tank and tested the water. 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite and 5 nitrate... His condition seems to be getting worse too. The wide stuff on his dorsal fin is spreading. I dont think that the water is infected because the other fish are all pretty well. I've removed him from the tank and put him in a massive bowl and added some prime.

What do I do next??!
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 12:15 PM
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How large is the bowl? are you able to heat it?

Whatever the cause of the dorsal collapse- probably the fish had clamped fin because was feeling unwell or stressed- it looks like fungus is on the area- sorry I am not sure what medication to recommend because it's hard to tell what the underlying cause was- but at the very least you should do frequent water changes on the bowl- something like 25% twice a day- be sure to keep the temperature the same, and drape a cloth or something over/around the bowl to reduce stress to the fish. Also don't try to feed her while she is ill- probably won't eat and it will just foul the water in such a small environment that's hard to avoid.


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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-15-2019, 08:03 PM
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Treat with kanaplex as directed above.
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180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
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Hey guys,

So I sent the fish back to my LFS and they said that they'd try to treat him for 7 days and get back to me. I really hope he makes it.

However, based on what I read, I don't think that ts columnaris. it's been 2 days since I took him out of my tank and the remaining fish seem to be doing just fine. The second pearl gourami (female) looks to be doing better than ever (eating well and active).

I did a 50% water change after I took him out of the tank anyway. Would any of you recommend I add anything else to the tank? Maybe some kind of medication to prevent further diseases?

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
Treat with kanaplex as directed above.
The truth is that I decided against doing anything myself since I dont have an adequate quarantine tank and, quite honestly, im afraid of adding anything in my tank that would affect my filter or system...
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 08:29 PM
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Did someone say the fish had columnaris? I missed that?
The fish has had an injury ( either another fish or an object in tank) because as you said, it was there one evening and gone the next morning). It also has become secondarily infected because of indications from fish behavior.

Unless other fish have lost or eroding fins ( in this case I would say it is moving away from injury into something else) or been injured at the same time as this fish and are expressing similar symptoms- why would other fish be sick and need treating? It is the injury itself that has allowed a secondary bacterial infection to weaken the fish to begin with.

I would recommend getting book on fish-keeping, basic water chemistry, and disease before you get more fish.
One of the best: The Manual of Fish Health

180 g. low tech w/ wild South American cichlids, corydoras eques, and African Congo riverine tetras.
60 g. low tech w/ F1 Alenquer pair /Stendker "Tefe" discus and wild Altum Angels
30 g. low tech w/ Wild Tucano tetras
30 g. low-tech African Biotope
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-18-2019, 12:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Discusluv View Post
Did someone say the fish had columnaris? I missed that?
The fish has had an injury ( either another fish or an object in tank) because as you said, it was there one evening and gone the next morning). It also has become secondarily infected because of indications from fish behavior.

Unless other fish have lost or eroding fins ( in this case I would say it is moving away from injury into something else) or been injured at the same time as this fish and are expressing similar symptoms- why would other fish be sick and need treating? It is the injury itself that has allowed a secondary bacterial infection to weaken the fish to begin with.

I would recommend getting book on fish-keeping, basic water chemistry, and disease before you get more fish.
One of the best: The Manual of Fish Health



I think he is referring to my post on this thread Overnight Dorsal Fin Collapse And Discoloration On Pearl Gourami - Please Help! - Aquarium Advice - Aquarium Forum Community where I say "That doesn't look like ich to me. It looks like a bacterial infection like columnaris. It's possible he rubbed his fin on something and that allowed the infection to set in. I have had something similar on my rainbow fish. I turned the heat up to 82 and added 1 teaspoon of aquarium salt per 5 gallons. Sadly one rainbow didn't make it but the other healed up just fine." I guess he read that as "this is columnaris" but that is not what I was saying.
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 05-18-2019, 05:30 PM
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Is it a heater burn?


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