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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I suspect an outbreak of columnaris. I need to act fast. I have a 220 gallon planted tank, and need to treat the tank. Removing all of the fish will be pretty much impossible.

I am told kanamycin is the way to go. Seachem Kanaplex looks to be the only readily available thing, but appears to come in a little tube. How much would I need to dose my 220 gallon, up to 3 times as the instructions state?

Is there a more generic form I can buy that will give me more bang for my buck? I do have a vet friend who could call in a prescription for me if needed.

Any help is greatly appreciated, and the sooner the better. Thanks!
 

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Well it depends if your vet friends' practice deals with small animals and fish more often than farm animals.
The one vet here also does planted tanks, so I'm never shy to phone him. But they need to order some things in bulk and its not viable for the few times it would be requested, however the advice one gets as to what products are available can be invaluable if you are willing to chase further leads...
 

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Oh boy, that's going to be really pricey to treat such a large tank.

First and foremost, I would make sure you have correctly ID'd that you are indeed fighting Columnaris or not.

Seachem Kanaplex dosing instructions from Kensfish
"Usual dose is 360 mg/40 L (10gallons). Contains kanamycin sulfate, potassium sulfate DIRECTIONS: Use 1 level measure (180 mg) for every 20L (5 gallons). Measurer included. Repeat every 2 days until symptoms disappear or up to a maximum of 3 doses."

A 5 gram tube = 5000 mg (each 5 g tube treats roughly 140 gallons of water [actual 138.9 gallons])

You would need 7,920 mg to treat 220 gallons of water PER DOSE (need x2 5g tubes).
2 doses = 15,840 mg (need x4 5g tubes).
3 doses = 23,760 mg (need at least x5 5g tubes for a full 3 round course. Might need a 6th depending on filter water volume, but you could lower tank water volume but exact gallon).
REMEMBER TO FACTOR IN FILTRATION WATER VOLUME (whether it be a sump, canister filer or whatever. But I guess actual water volume varies depending on substrate, hardscape taking up water volume space within the tank)

Being an antibiotic and you are dealing with such a nasty disease, I would try going for the complete 3 full (underdosing may be ineffective and in danger of creating "super bugs") doses to liken the chance you successfully killed the disease so it's less likely to survive and develop an immunity to the med (it's already hard to treat as it is!).

I believe Kensfish has the cheapest prices for Kanaplex. I have no idea on other meds containing Kanamycin (ask your pharmaceutical friend or maybe a veterinarian)
Seachem Kanaplex 5 Gram
Seachem Kanaplex 100 Gram

Some extra tips, cooler temp water slows down columnaris progression (keep fish stress in mind, so don't drop too fast or too far). Salt levels above 1 tablespoon per 5 gallons or HIGHER, has been shown to fight off columnaris, so has Methylene Blue dips/swabs.

Just so you know, studies have been shown that using Kanamycin combined/together with Nitrofurazone (found in API Furan 2), has shown to have a higher success rate in curing Columnaris. But it's is another pricey med, and also Nitrofurazone can be harsher on fish and can harm/kill plants and inverts. Just thought I'd mention though.

Fish Columnaris | Fungus & Saprolegnia | Treatment & Prevention
 

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Angels plus has it in a larger package. Those little SeaChem tubes are hard to measure from.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Thank you all for your comments. I found a 100 gram bottle of Kanaplex on ebay for $60 from a good seller. For future reference, what are your thoughts on feeding the kanamycin laced flake food?

Food: https://www.amazon.com/Peabodys-Medicated-Flakes-Kanamycin/dp/B00KQGM2C2

Is it a waste? All of my fish are eating, but I hate to have them not get enough meds and have the bacteria become resistant to the meds. And if I go the food route, and I better off using oxytetracycline instead of kanamycin?

Thanks again!
 

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Flavobacterium columnare (Columnaris) is a gram-negative aerobic bacteria, so you need an antibiotic that is effective against those types of bacteria.

Oxytetracycline can be effective against some gram-negative bacter, but it doesn't effect many of those species. There was a scientific study of various antibiotics used to treat Columnaris, while I can't remember the exact results, Oxytetracycline was either completely ineffective, or only showed slight effectiveness against Columnaris.

If you wanted to use an alternative to Kanamycin, you could try Minocycline (found in Maracyn 2, not Maracyn 1 which is Erythromycin and is ineffective since that treats gram-positive). It's part of the Tetracycline group, but is even more broad-spectrum and treats more gram-negative bacteria.
But it is widely known that Kanamycin is the most effective antibiotic for Columnaris, so I suggest just sticking with Kanamycin. If treatment with Kanamycin seemed ineffective, then a try with Minocycline might be suggested (in case the particular Columnaris strain was possibly immune to Kanamycin).

Regarding feeding medicated foods vs dosing the water column, I personally just stick with dosing the water (even when treating for worms/flukes *some meds require a decent amount of ions for the meds to be properly absorbed/passed), that way I know each fish is receiving the proper dosage and the entire water/tank is treated (much less chance of surviving bacteria/parasites in the "un-treated" areas of the water). Since Columnaris can be all throughout your tank/water (not just in/on your fish), I would just dose the water.
 
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