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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have around 13 espeis in my 75. I noticed one has lost a lot of its copper color.

  • The fish does not seem to be breathing laboriously.
  • It is not getting skinny and its belly is not particularly distended or bloated.
  • No signs of stringy, mucousy white poop that I have noticed yet
  • It does seem to be isolating itself somewhat but it still shoals at times.
  • It is not lethargic and seems to be swimming normally as a matter of fact it was just playing in the flow of the hob with some of the other espei.
  • No outward sign of infection exists such as spots, tumors, fungus, ich, etc.
  • No other fish in the tank are affected in any way
  • Water parameters are on spec with 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, nitrate 40, ph is 7.8
  • I perform 20% water changes weekly and pretty religiously
This one fish has simply lost color. My instinct is to treat the whole tank with pimafix and melafix but I am looking for other suggestions.
 

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From the sounds of it, everything sounds like the fish should be fine. But if you wanted to, melafix or pimafix wouldn't hurt.

Does the one fish seem to fight a lot or get picked on, causing it to stress and fade color?

Or perhaps that one "Espei", may actually be a Hengeli (Trigonostigma hengeli). If the color is not as full coverage or as orange even though it seems healthy, and even it not hanging with the rest of the Espei's as much since it's a different species, does make sense. It's pretty easy to tell the two species apart if both are colored up (on T. hegeli, pretty much the orange coverage only reaches to the "porkchop" marking, where as Espei the orange will reach from tail to nose).

For what it's worth, I've kept Espei's from pH 7.5 and all pH points down into the 5's and they've always been just as intensely colored. Did not notice any color intensity difference due to pH. Mine have always been on wide variety diet, but NLS Thera A as a main staple. All of the fish I keep have been some of the most colorful you'd ever see. If only I had any sort of decent camera to share (even my phone's camera is extremely lousy...).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the replies. Ive had these fish since the middle of December and I would have thought I would have noticed with the weekly water changes etc etc. Looking up T. Hengeli they do look similar but I dont know. I'm going to look tonight for the orange on the lambchop that Hengeli seems to have and see how bright that actually is.

I tend to think ph is not a factor as the fish have been in this water 5 months and my ph remains pretty stable at 7.8 across all of my tanks. I do appreciate the idea and the suggestion.

I just ordered 10 more espei to add to my school and have been watching much more intently than I have in the past looking for any issues. My eyes arent the best and my daughter actually caught it. I think I will add the two 'fixes and see what happens and continue to monitor the fish for health degradation. In 5 months I have lost two and I dont want to lose any more as these little guys are pretty darn entertaining and one of my favorite fish that I currently have (not fair because I like them all lol).

Bump:
Couldn't hurt to separate it to treat with what meds.
Any reason I shouldnt treat the whole tank (other than cost)? Are the two 'fixes pretty much safe for all fish (meaning scaleless fish)?
 
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