issues, parasites, uv questions - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 03:52 PM Thread Starter
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issues, parasites, uv questions

I've been on this site for a while now, but this is my first post. I've been running a 10 gallon planted tank for the last year, and it was doing wonderfully. So wonderfully that I decided to move up to a 60 gallon a month ago. I transplanted all the same plants, livestock, filter, everything- in addition to adding a new filter & heater sized for the new 60 gallon size difference (so its running 2 filters- the original one that was on the 10 g and now the new big one for the 60 g). I closely monitored parameters, expected a mini cycle, and once everything was stable at 0 ammonia, zero nitrite, and zero nitrate with ph 7.4 and temp at 76, I slowly started adding some new fish.


This is where I got stupid and added one dwarf gourami 5 days ago without quarantine first. The next day I saw a white spot on the base of his tail. I was hesitant in calling this "ich", and decided to wait and see if having a large tank full of plants, happy tankmates, excellent water quality, and great food twice a day would boost his immune system enough to make it a non-issue. Well, the white spot on him has not multiplied, but I did notice yesterday that one of my rams has a whitish spot on the end of his tail now that concerns me enough to want to go ahead and treat the entire tank because I'm scared of a serious issue on the horizon.


My tank has snails, shrimp, multiple fish species, and a variety of live plants. The water is 76 degrees, with zero ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates close to zero. My plan is to use Kordon Ich Attack as a safe treatment for both mild ich and whatever the whitish area on my ram's tail may be. I don't want to take chances!


This is my first time ever medicating a fully planted tank- I don't want to hurt the plants OR the livestock. My question is, has anyone ever tried do-it-yourself UV lights as a prevention measure for parasites? I know they sell aquarium specific uv filters, but they also sell UV lights for a wide variety of other applications, like cleaning air, hardening manicures, and things like that. Would the UV light from one of those sources be sufficient to kill parasites if it was left pointing over the water such as if I took the filter hood off and let it sit over the water in the filer before it gets to my biological filtration (which I don't want to kill)? I'm basically hoping for an inexpensive way to help treat everyone in my tank without hurting anyone.


Should I raise my temperature also? I'm not sure how high temps affect plants but I know they speed up the life cycle of ich. Mostly I have a variety of amazons and crypts that have always thrived for me. Any other advice is certainly welcome! And yes, I have learned my lesson on quarantine.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 05:58 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ginplants View Post
I've been on this site for a while now, but this is my first post. I've been running a 10 gallon planted tank for the last year, and it was doing wonderfully. So wonderfully that I decided to move up to a 60 gallon a month ago. I transplanted all the same plants, livestock, filter, everything- in addition to adding a new filter & heater sized for the new 60 gallon size difference (so its running 2 filters- the original one that was on the 10 g and now the new big one for the 60 g). I closely monitored parameters, expected a mini cycle, and once everything was stable at 0 ammonia, zero nitrite, and zero nitrate with ph 7.4 and temp at 76, I slowly started adding some new fish.


This is where I got stupid and added one dwarf gourami 5 days ago without quarantine first. The next day I saw a white spot on the base of his tail. I was hesitant in calling this "ich", and decided to wait and see if having a large tank full of plants, happy tankmates, excellent water quality, and great food twice a day would boost his immune system enough to make it a non-issue. Well, the white spot on him has not multiplied, but I did notice yesterday that one of my rams has a whitish spot on the end of his tail now that concerns me enough to want to go ahead and treat the entire tank because I'm scared of a serious issue on the horizon.


My tank has snails, shrimp, multiple fish species, and a variety of live plants. The water is 76 degrees, with zero ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates close to zero. My plan is to use Kordon Ich Attack as a safe treatment for both mild ich and whatever the whitish area on my ram's tail may be. I don't want to take chances!


This is my first time ever medicating a fully planted tank- I don't want to hurt the plants OR the livestock. My question is, has anyone ever tried do-it-yourself UV lights as a prevention measure for parasites? I know they sell aquarium specific uv filters, but they also sell UV lights for a wide variety of other applications, like cleaning air, hardening manicures, and things like that. Would the UV light from one of those sources be sufficient to kill parasites if it was left pointing over the water such as if I took the filter hood off and let it sit over the water in the filer before it gets to my biological filtration (which I don't want to kill)? I'm basically hoping for an inexpensive way to help treat everyone in my tank without hurting anyone.


Should I raise my temperature also? I'm not sure how high temps affect plants but I know they speed up the life cycle of ich. Mostly I have a variety of amazons and crypts that have always thrived for me. Any other advice is certainly welcome! And yes, I have learned my lesson on quarantine.
I'm adding a picture of each of the affected fish "spots" to see what I'm concerned about! Thank you!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 06:11 PM
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There are folks that stick a uv light in a sump. Haven't heard of folks hanging it over a tank. Unless it's a light in the 240nm spectrum it won't be helpful. This level of spectrum is actually bad for humans though, so I wouldn't do it anywhere exposed, like the top of a tank.


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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
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Yikes! Thank you for that information- I certainly don't want to hurt anyone with my goal of cheap treatment.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 06:31 PM
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I have never used it an am not sure if it’s strong enough to deal with parasites, but I recently found this all-in-one UV sterilizer called “The Green Killing Machine” that is used for green water. Maybe someone else could chime in, but it could be a good solution (if it’s strong enough for parasites like Ich)


One thing I’ve learned: If you’re going to create some sort of UV setup, make sure the water has a good amount of time being bathed in the UV. If you’re pumping crazy amounts of water through a UV, the water isn’t having enough exposure time to be truly sterilized.

Hope some of this helps

CA


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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 09:30 PM Thread Starter
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That's an excellent point- the flow rate for the UV light matters a lot. That's probably why they make specific ones for aquariums instead of people like me trying to rig homemade devices! Thank you for the input. It sounds like between getting the exposure time right and the exact UV light output right, its probably worth it to just get a UV sterilizer for the tank if it comes to that.
I'm really hoping that the Kordon stuff works so I don't need to panic any further over this!

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-12-2020, 09:54 PM
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The pics you posted do NOT appear to be Ich but more like slight damage from hitting something or an injury. I would not treat with antibiotics or medication at this time. Clean water and good parameters should help them improve.

Please do not use non-aquarium UV gadgets as the UV rays are harmful to eyesight, both ours and the tank inhabitants. I have seen some UV gadgets sold that are not in an enclosed housing and are meant to be used in a sump that contains no fish or animals.

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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-13-2020, 08:18 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the feedback on the 2 pictures- the one on the gourami tail base is mostly round, but the one on the ram made me freak out because after seeing the round white spot on the gourami followed by the white spot on the ram within a few days, I was instantly worried about a potential epidemic. The ram's tail white spot actually looks rather like a line, or a smear more than a circle now that I've had a few days to calm down & think. I debated if it could've been a nip from another fish, but that white spot on the gourami has had me spooked.
I normally steer clear of buying fish from Petsmart because I had terrible luck with them and ich in the past. I started buying from my local aquarium store instead, and their livestock have been flawless- until last week when my daughter asked for the flame gourami and Petsmart was the only store that had it. I think I was paranoid from the start and overreacted in fear of everyone in my tank dying, guilt over not quarantining, and paranoia about where the gourami came from!
I appreciate the feedback. It helps me not panic so much! I will definitely not be doing anything with any UV light, and I won't be using any chemicals right now.
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