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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay, this is kind of an odd one. I'm going to be re-doing my 20g soon, but the problem is, all the fish are darn hard to catch. Even if I take all the decor out, I still spend half an hour or so chasing the poor fish around with a net, because those danios are darn fast! This is all very stressful for me and the fish, but I may have found a solution. Clove oil.
It's a natural anesthetic, usually used for toothaches, but also used on fish. Some people use it for big koi and other large fish if they're hurt, so they can sedate the fish and pick it up without freaking it out. Other people use it if a fish is too far gone, sick or injured, and use the clove oil to put it to sleep.
What is the plausibility of removing all the decor, adding a bit of clove oil, and using it to essentially tranquilize my speedy fish? Not enough to have them flopped over on their sides, of course, just enough to slow them down.
They wouldn't be in the clove water for too long, of course, as I'd fill a bucket with tank water beforehand and net them as soon as possible. I'd be doing a nearly complete water change, maybe wipe down the insides of the tank, would that be enough to remove the clove oil?
Also, would this be safe for ghost shrimp? Assassain snails? Any imput on how much to use for a 20g? Any imput at all?
 

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Possible, as I've read many stories detailing the usage of clove oils to sedate fish for euthanasia, surgery, and various other practices.

What I can see going wrong is maybe you OD the fish, and they all fall asleep forever.

I do not know if it is safe for shrimp, but then again, dosing your entire tank with clove oil seems kind of sketchy to me. Kind of a hassle to change all the water don't you think?

I think a good alternative is for you since it is just a small 20g is to remove the hardscape, lower the water level significantly, and then netting them when they have no water to swim above or under your net.

Or get a bigger net.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
From what I've read, it's very difficult to overdose with clove oil, and even if you do, you can often revive a fish right after it's stopped breathing by putting it in fresh water.
I would be adding like 2 drops at a time, then waiting a while and seeing if they slow down. The problem is, danios are FAST little blighters, and even lowering the water level doesn't work, because they jump. Also, they get up between the net and the glass, and it's either let them go or squash them.
I could probably remove the ghost shrimp pretty easily, they aren't too fast. And since I'm removing all the water anyway to put in a different substrate, it's not really a problem to drain the tank. There would most likely be tiny traces of clove oil left, but not enough to affect them. Anyone ever tried this?
 

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I've not used clove oil with my fish before, but I do have experience with trying to catch danios! It took about 2 weeks of daily frustration before I finally figure out how to catch them. I turned the lights off for about an hour, till they were "asleep," then used a dim light (a candle) to see the reflection off their scales, and was able to catch them easily. However, if the clove oil method works, sounds like it could save a lot of people a lot of effort.
 

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Use two nets: a small one to chase them into a larger net. Fish get pretty confused when multiple nets are involved.
You could even place a sheet of acrylic/pexiglass (or other suitable tank divider) in the tank to partition off a section of it, making it way easier to catch the fish.
 

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If something can be used to euthanize a creature, can't one assume that a creature can overdose on it?

I've used it for euthanizing fish. I would suggest not using it in a tank because you will never ever ever get rid of the smell. Of course the smell won't bother you as much if you don't associate it with death.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I've tried two nets, dividers, turning off the lights, adding food, and just about anything that doesn't involve witchcraft. Either I have really tricky danios, or I'm horrible with nets. How much clove oil should I use? 3 drops? 5 drops?
I know it can be used to euthanize fish, in fact I've done that with a horribly skinny clown goby that wouldn't eat, but I also know it's an anesthetic. I don't mind the smell, it's kind of pleasant. Like a rainforest or something. Does the clove oil itself linger in the tank, or just the smell?
Okay, that's a dump question, let me rephrase it; will the fish still be affected if I empty all the clove water and wipe the glass down, or is the amount of oil left negligible?
 

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I'd chill them if they were that sneaky. Make a nice block of dechlorinated ice and slow them down.

After that, witchcraft.

Isn't there supposed to be a fishy tranq in "Bag Buddies"? Wonder what that is.
 

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Really, just get a bigger net. They come almost the full width of a 20 gallon tank and you can get them everywhere for a few bucks. Sweep it through the tank or chase them into it with another net.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
@Blazingwolf, I'm trying to find a simple way to catch them just this one time... That's not simple and it can't be fun for the fish.

@Mori, I think that wouldn't be too good for them... And my female bettas would not be happy if I did that.

@John K, they jump too much for that to work. I had one hit me in the face... Danios are like torpedos when they want to get away. And they're hard to pick up when they get on the floor.

@everyone, I've decided to use clove oil as a simple, stress-free way to do this, so thank you for the suggestions, but I just need to know how much clove oil to use. I have danios, cories, one teeny cory, an african dwarf frog this won't effect, ghost shrimp, a male swordtail, and two female bettas.
 
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