Not a problem - happy to help where I can.
I understand having to put one of them down - probably for the best.
Yup; my amazingly wonderful husband did the deed this AM. The fish was swimming around and seemed just fine, but I’ve seen how this disease progresses and I felt sure he’d end up dead while infecting the tank further. Glad I didn’t have to do it, nonetheless.
I think your plan to keep the other healthy fish is a good plan (just my opinion). Your idea of a lower maintenance tank is sound for this situation. As for the remaining fish - why not give them a chance. Life finds a way.
That’s my husband’s suggestion for now. The question is... for how long before I add ANY new fish? Weeks? Months? Years? I like @Greggz
comments... just don’t want to be stupid or unable to face the music, if indeed that’s the tune that’s playing.
If I could suggest, see who has some Anubias Nana available. Tough plant, slow growing and attaches to wood very well. I started out with a dozen or so leaves from Phil Edwards. A couple years later it's now in the wifes tank (probably 30-40 leaves) and my tank (100+ leaves). A couple different crypts would be a nice addition as well. Not sure of the growth rate of your plant on the far left but I do like the bright green color. Another good, low maintenance plant would be Hygrophila Corymbosa Compacta - I have some in all 3 of my tanks. In my low tech 20g tank I could probably go 4 months+ without ever touching it. Just let it grow.
If I switch to crypts and anubias nana (which I also love) I’m going to need to considerably lower my light strength! Might not even need my T5s at all. That’s not BAD, it’s just... different. Would I keep needing to inject CO2 in that case?
As for the filters, etc I am a little surprised that bleach or strong peroxide would not resolve the issue. Those products seem to be capable of killing just about anything organic/living.
If you read Walsted’s article (here’s the full link: https://www.tfhmagazine.com/articles...-disease213231
) you’ll see that Myco is bioshielded and therefore REALLY REALLY hard to kill. Also, as Walsted points out, bleaching, etc. and general sterilizing procedures commonly recommended might be making room for NTM (non-tuberculous myrobacteria). IF you believe Walsted. Which Gary Lange does not. Hard to know whom to believe. This article is actually a shortened form of her longer, better documented, and more technical version here: https://dianawalstad.files.wordpress.../mb__2017c.pdf
I agree with @Greggz
statement that mycobacterium is often the first thing that people call when they see skin lesions. But, there are far more common (non-chronic) bacterial diseases of the aquarium that are most likely the culprit. The most common being aeromonas, pseudonomas, and flexibacter columnaris (of which there are 4 types).
I would LOVE for that to be the right answer! BUT: Since you can’t tell what it is, is it responsible to bring in new fish and “see what happens”? This is the issue for me right now. You are right that I don’t KNOW it’s TB, but I also don’t know it’s not. There is also the added risk of human infection. I’m not generally a germaphobe AT ALL, but it is (or, I guess, could be) a thing and I need to consider risks/rewards.
Your description of "tumors" is curious. This is not typical of symptoms on effected fish. There are nodules noticeable on liver, kidneys, spleen on examination of inner organs after death-- but, not on body of fish. Tumors on fish are more associated with lymphocistis which is a viral disease. Young, healthy fish can survive this viral disease; but, stressed, genetically weak or older fish will often die from the secondary conditions they catch from the disease lowering their immunity. Again, a virus that doesnt kill directly, but lowers immunity to the more common diseases that are found in the aquarium. Lymphocystis would be consistent with your treating fish for external symptoms and seeing a recovery from what looked like fungus on body. Most likely what you treated with was nitrofurazone or doxycycline which are the two active ingredients found in many LFS. Lymphocystis is a viral infection, it is not a disease that the fish recovers from completely, but it with them throughout their lifetime( even when fish non-symptomatic).
UV sterilizers are the single best way to keep pathogens in check.
So... “tumors” might have been the wrong term. They were places where, first scales were missing, some on the side of the body, and then on some, on their mouths. They looked, swam, ate, etc. fine. For months. But over time, these places on their bodies developed raw, red flesh... I think they would better have been termed “lesions.” I did not know whom to ask, so I didn’t ask anyone... probably stupid of me. This was AFTER I had treated for what was obviously a tank wide, fungal/bacterial infection brought on my poor husbandry in a very busy season of my life. I had an adult, emerald rainbowfish who made a full recovery from that tank-wide episode. The two Boesemani males who got the ulcerated flesh developed them afterwards. I suppose it could be that their immunities were lowered from the tank-wide episode, and I could further postulate that the fish I just euthanized was weakened by the ich battle and algae bloom that I just went through. I’m not sure. Best I can do, not being an expert in any way.
I love my UV sterilizer. It’s an in-tank one, not expensive, and is running a 13 w bulb rated for 150 gallons. Mine is a 120 tank.
That was a real shame (Walstad being chased away). People can't keep their egos in check and ruined a great opportunity for everyone.
@OP: I've recently had some random, inexplicable rainbow die-offs. It's very frustrating. One of my favorite male parkinsoni and a Gary Lange lineage male praecox were among the casualties. But with these, there was little-to-no outside signs of illness. The parkinsoni just dying out of nowhere when it was swimming and acting fine a moment before its demise, and the praecox started breathing heavily and died 20 minutes later. No missing scales, lesions, or anything of the sort.
I really wish we had better answers for you.
Thanks. I have long wondered about the story of Walsted being chased away... I don’t know any details. My first planted tank was a Walstad tank (journal is on this forum) but it wasn’t very rewarding long term, for me, because low tech = kind of boring plants.
I know fish die. My issue is whether my tank is terminally infected, as the article on the FB Group Rainbowfish Live that I linked above suggests, or whether I can reasonably take a chance and buy some new rainbowfish and soldier on.