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I had a bad case of ich on my tank so I dosed Ich X into my 75G tank. Unfortunately my dog had chewed on my siphon so I decided to treat my tank while I waited for my new siphon to be delivered.

It took 5 days for the siphon to come so I was adding Ich X to my tank without the water changes. Ich was all gone by day 5.

A week and a half later, I had 5 fish deaths not related to ich - the fish that died looked like they might have gotten dropsy. So I tested my water and found out my nitrites were way off as they were unreadable - hard to read from the API color page but it was so purple it's easily between 1 ppm - 5 ppm. Ammonia was 0 ppm and nitrate was 5< ppm.

I've been doing daily 50 - 60% water changes for the last 3 days and I have been able to drop it to 0.25 ppm but it now peaks at around 0.25 ppm - 0.5ppm by the end of the day. I'm also using seachem prime 2x dosage during water changes to detoxify the nitrite.

The tank was cycled, so was it the Ich X (malachite green & formalin) without the water changes that killed my bacteria?

Should I keep doing daily water changes or should I let the nitrite peak so the bacteria become established?

How much ppm is too toxic for the fish to handle?
 

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Was your cycle newly established? Under 3 months?

If so, yes, Ich X contains Formaldehyde which can inhibit nitrite-oxidizing bacteria in certain situations. If have newly established bio-filter, dose without water changes in between as recommended, a mini-cycle is possible.

Fish cannot withstand any nitrite toxicity exposure so I would continue daily water changes until levels read zero. I would also add a bit of uniodized salt (5 tablespoon per 75 gallon) to offset any possibility of Nitrite poisoning ( "brown blood" disease).
 

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Was your cycle newly established? Under 3 months?

If so, yes, Ich X contains Formaldehyde which can inhibit nitrite-oxidizing bacteria in certain situations. If have newly established bio-filter, dose without water changes in between as recommended, a mini-cycle is possible.

Fish cannot withstand any nitrite toxicity exposure so I would continue daily water changes until levels read zero. I would also add a bit of uniodized salt (5 tablespoon per 75 gallon) to offset any possibility of Nitrite poisoning ( "brown blood" disease).
Yes my tank was cycled 1 month ago. I stopped testing my water after it was cycled.

I just decided to test since I had some fish loss for no reason and got surprised by the nitrite spike
 

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when you treat the main display tank for ich it'll mess up your established bacterial colonies
Sorry about your losses. I think the best thing to do forward is to keep doing daily water changes, 30-50% with treated tap water that is temp calibrated to match for the next week until you see things equalize. This whole process is stressful for the fish so keep an eye on them, I would lower lights a bit and turn off CO2 if you have it.

moving forward it's always advised to have a 10G spare tank available to QT new fish or use to treat sick fish instead of just dumping everything in the main display tank. Hopefully when you get new fish, after they go to 2-3 week QT, your main tank will remain protected
 

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Some antibiotics kill good bacteria (in people and in fish tanks). Treating with antibiotics can have other untoward effects in fish tanks. For ich in the past I have used increased temps (82) along with garlic based treatments (not supposed to be as bad as straight up antiobiotics) along with a UV filter to kill the free floating phase. It worked well for me. YMMV.
 

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when you treat the main display tank for ich it'll mess up your established bacterial colonies
Sorry about your losses. I think the best thing to do forward is to keep doing daily water changes, 30-50% with treated tap water that is temp calibrated to match for the next week until you see things equalize. This whole process is stressful for the fish so keep an eye on them, I would lower lights a bit and turn off CO2 if you have it.

moving forward it's always advised to have a 10G spare tank available to QT new fish or use to treat sick fish instead of just dumping everything in the main display tank. Hopefully when you get new fish, after they go to 2-3 week QT, your main tank will remain protected
I have never had a problem with my cycle treating with malachite green- the most common active ingredient used for Ich treatment. Even in newly established aquariums. Formalin based blends are another thing entirely. they can mess with your bio-filter when no water changes made in between.
Also, Ich treatment is the exception, you treat the fish in the tank that the fish were exposed in- not a hospital tank.

Some antibiotics kill good bacteria (in people and in fish tanks). Treating with antibiotics can have other untoward effects in fish tanks. For ich in the past I have used increased temps (82) along with garlic based treatments (not supposed to be as bad as straight up antiobiotics) along with a UV filter to kill the free floating phase. It worked well for me. YMMV.
Ich treatments dont contain antibiotics.
 

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Ich treatments dont contain antibiotics.
You are correct, technically Malachite Green (in Ich-X) is an antimicrobial...not what we would call a traditional antibiotic (erythromycin, azithromycin, amoxicillin, ampicillin, etc). It is an aniline dye based antimicrobial (hence the reason it kills ich). I guess I was a little "loose" with my terminology. I thought malachite green hurts biofilters...which was the point I was trying to make about side effects. I found a few references online stating malachite green will kill the bacteria in biofilters but they were mostly just forum posts and not necessarily good reliable sources. I think in this case the nitrite spike after using showed it at least caused some effect to the beneficial bacteria in the tank.


Cheers,
Jon
 

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You are correct, technically Malachite Green (in Ich-X) is an antimicrobial...not what we would call a traditional antibiotic (erythromycin, azithromycin, amoxicillin, ampicillin, etc). It is an aniline dye based antimicrobial (hence the reason it kills ich). I guess I was a little "loose" with my terminology. I thought malachite green hurts biofilters...which was the point I was trying to make about side effects. I found a few references online stating malachite green will kill the bacteria in biofilters but they were mostly just forum posts and not necessarily good reliable sources. I think in this case the nitrite spike after using showed it at least caused some effect to the beneficial bacteria in the tank.


Cheers,
Jon
Formalin can be detrimental to biofilters, yes. Formalin is an active ingredient in the proprietary blend Ich-X . But, this is not a chemical addition ( formalin) in all blends for Ich- for example, Paraguard.
Malachite green inhibits biofilters? Nah.
 
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