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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What would you do?
After my horrible columnaris outbreak in the 55, I finally bought a QT tank (duh. Better late than never).
I've had 9 celebes rainbows and two black tetras in the QT since then. I haven't set the 55 back up yet, and I'm in the process of getting a 29 ready - that's the tank the rainbows will go into.
My problem is the black tetras. One had lost the top half of it's caudal fin, but it's since grown back. The other lost it's entire caudal fin - I mean everything! It's body just ends in a stump at the caudal base (whatever that part of the body is called). My problem is, it swims and eats and zips around like nothing's wrong. This has been a few weeks now. Sometimes I think I see the start of fin tips on that stub, but it's most likely wishful thinking. Do I cull it? Do I reintroduce it to a community tank? (how do I know it's healthy?) Maybe I should put it in the tank with the rainbows since they obviously leave it alone, and they've been tank mates for over a month. It shows no sign of ill health or distress, so I haven't got the heart to cull it. I guess I worry that the end of it's body harbors some dormant columnaris...
 

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I don't know that the lack of a fin would make me more cautious about this particular fish, because from what I'm reading the infection occurs fairly rapidly and if the fish isn't dead within a few days they're probably OK. I wouldn't put it in a tank with anything but the other QTed fish for a while (a month or so at least) just to make sure that the bacteria had been cleared from all of them, but that's just me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
How long do you typically QT fish, anyhow? (this is my first QT tank). I've had these fish in the QT tank for about three weeks. I'll be at least two more, maybe three weeks before their tank is ready. I know they were exposed to the columnaris, but how long do you QT fish from the lfs?
Thanks!
 

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if the cadel fin is damaged beyond a point it may not regrow but ive seen some that have regrown quite a bit so id give him time to heal it does take a while, if its healthy i wouldnt cull it as you say its not even hindering his daily life let him live..
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
When the time comes, I've decided I'll put both the black tetras in the 29g with the rainbows - they've been tank mates since I got the rainbows, anyway. I can't bring myself to cull the fish because the missing tail is in no way hindering it - you're right.
Thanks!
 

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I don't know that the lack of a fin would make me more cautious about this particular fish, because from what I'm reading the infection occurs fairly rapidly and if the fish isn't dead within a few days they're probably OK.
Jason, not all columnaris behaves that way. I have learned - the hard way - that there are several strains of columnaris and they manifest somewhat differently. I too have read of the fast-acting type that kills within hours.

But my tank harbored a chronic version of the bacteria where the mouth of the fish would turn white, and that was the only sign until weeks or even months later, it began to waste away and die.

Some of my fish, like the tetras above, lost part of a tail, seemed to recover, and then weeks later succumbed.

The OP is doing the right thing in keeping them in quarantine for an extended period to make sure they are OK.

Julia
 

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I've seen several fish regrow lost tails, though it took a few months for my cory to regrow its tail it still lives now with a weird looking yet striking tail it now has a name since it is easy to tell apart. not sure how long it will take, or if at all, for your tetra to regrow what it lost, but if it can still swim straight and compete for food it should be fine
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yep, it swims and schools with the rainbows and the other black tetra, just like a whole fish - lol.
I feel much better about deciding to keep it, since posting here ~ they will all stay in QT a bit longer though...
thanks!
 
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