Diagnose Sick Fish In Aquarium

The most obvious way to determine a sick fish is to view it’s body for any unusual spots or growths. Ich is a common illness characterized by white spots around the gills or on the body. Ich is a species of ciliate protozoa that is often introduced by snails, new fish or caused by changes in the water condition. Should you notice these distinctive white spots you can treat the tank by adding chemicals that will kill the ciliate protozoa. You can also quarantine fish that may be infected until they are healthy.

Another way to determine that your fish may be sick is to notice it’s changed behavior. A common symptom of illness is flashing. Flashing is when the fish appears to be scratching itself on the substrate or rocks and wood in the tank. Flashing could be a sign that the fish is developing an infection on the body.

The fish may also be swimming erratically. This might include darting around the fish tank, moving up to the surface or spinning round on itself in a constant motion. This erratic behavior indicates that the fish is stressed in some way. This may be because the water condition has changed or that the fish is suffering from some kind of illness. As many conditions that affect fish can be attributed to poor water quality it is important to check the water condition first. This could solve the problem immediately and in the future.

Another behavior that might indicate a problem is that the fish are staying around the filter or on the surface a lot. This indicates that they are trying to get more oxygenated water and again might be due to the water quality or may be an illness.

Once you have attained as much physical and behavioral data as possible about the fish you could then consult a fish disease book or visit a website on fish disease. These media often have diagnostic questionnaires on the condition and behavior of the fish. They will ask questions about the fish and help you to determine the problem with the fish and the appropriate action to take.

As a last resort you could take a skin scrape or biopsy of the fish and have the sample diagnosed by a professional. Of course this could create more stress for the fish that could make the condition worse and it is quite costly.

Water condition is the most important factor to consider when keeping your fish healthy. Diligent care of the water and habitat will ensure that your fish don’t suffer from any of the common illnesses. If they do however you can follow the advice listed and take the appropriate action.

Siamese Fighting Fish

They are famous for being extremely territorial and they attack anything they think might be another male of their species.

Betas should be kept in large, filtered tanks with still water and many hiding places to best duplicate their natural home. At least 10 gallons is recommended, and 50% to 75% of the tank should consist of hiding places for the beta. Betas love to hide and this will reduce stress. The water temperature of your tank should be between 78 and 80 degrees, and never drop below 74 degrees. Most people will need a heater to maintain these temperatures. More than one beta can be kept in a tank, but only one male.

Remember that betas are carnivores. They can be fed frozen or processed meat, though the beta should have consumed his entire meal after two minutes or you have overfed it. Uneaten food floating in the tank can lead to a buildup of bacteria that will hurt your beta’s immune system. They should be fed about once a day.

Change the water in the tank frequently, as the beta lives naturally in places where the water is frequently renewed.

Siamese Fighting Fish can be kept with other kinds of fish, but remember that they are extremely territorial. Avoid fish that look similar to betas, and fish that like to rip at fins.

Take care of your beta and you will be able to enjoy their beautiful plumage for years to come.

Introduction Planted Aquarium

Many common fish diseases will primarily attack stressed fish, and providing your aquarium inhabitants with a safe and restful environment that is similar to their native home is therefore a very wise decision. There are however many fish species that should not be kept with plants since they will destroy them. There are also many fish species that will feel more at home in an aquarium decorated with rocks and caves, or empty sea shells, than with plants. (You can of course combine live plants, rocks and empty sea shells in the same setup.)

If you are a beginner aquarium keeper, or have not kept live plants before, you should ideally begin with sturdy plant species such as Java Fern or Amazon sword. These plants can adapt to a wide range of different water conditions, which means that you can place them in most aquariums regardless of exact temperature, pH and hardiness. They are also sturdy enough to withstand nibbling fishes, and if a plant becomes uprooted by a digging fish it is usually not a catastrophe for the plant. If your fishes are very fond of digging, you can instead opt for floating plants or plants that can be attached to aquarium decoration instead of being planted in the substrate.

All plants will need light, carbon dioxide and nutrition to survive, but some plants are more demanding than others. The sturdy plant species mentioned above can be kept in an ordinary aquarium with only standard aquarium light, no added carbon dioxide and no fertilization. If you choose plants that are native to clear waters or plants that grow close to the surface in very sunny regions of the world, they can require very powerful lights, such as fluorescent bulbs or metal halide. Between these two extremes you will find the moderately demanding plant species that need roughly twice as much light as the standard light in an aquarium.

A common recommendation for moderately light demanding plant species is 20W for each square foot of tank surface area, or 2W per gallon of water. These recommendations are however quite vague and the only way to find out exactly how much your particular plants need is of course to research each plant species. The necessary amount of light will also be affected by other factors, such as how densely planted your aquarium is and how far down the light has to penetrate.

As mentioned above, all plants need light, carbon dioxide and nutrition to survive and if you adjust one of these three factors you will often need to adjust the other two as well. Never add extra light without first finding out if you need to add more nutrients and/or carbon dioxide to the water as well. Carbon dioxide and nutrients are naturally produced by your fish, but for some plants species this is not enough and they will need additional carbon dioxide and/or fertilizers to be able to fully benefit from the increased light.

Koi Herpes Virus

The signs of KHV often non-specific. You need to monitor your Koi Fish, if your Koi remains near the surface, swims lethargically, exhibits respiratory distress, has gill lesions, has gill mottling with red and white patches, bleeding gills, has sunken eyes, pale patches or blisters on the skin and uncoordinated swimming. The KHV seems to spread in the same ways as most herpes viruses: direct contact with infected fish, with fluids from infected fish, and/or with water or mud from infected systems. Once a fish has been exposed to the virus, it will always be a carrier. There is no known cure for Koi Herpes Virus. Mortality related to Koi Herpes Virus typically occurs between 18°C and 27°C. Almost no mortalities occur below 18°C, and there has been no reported occurrence of the disease above 30°C.

How do you know your Koi Fish has KHV? You need the assistance of a fish health specialist and a fish disease diagnostic laboratory. There are direct and indirect methods.

Direct methods include: virus isolation and identification (it means growing the virus or not) and PCR techniques (it means testing for the presence of KHV genes).
Indirect tests for KHV include ELISA testing, which looks for antibodies produced by the fish against the herpes virus These testing method can give proof that a fish was infected with KHV. This indirect test cannot determine if the fish is still infected with virus, so it is not recommended as a primary diagnostic tool.

As I mentioned there is no known treatment for KHV and the mortality is very high. If your Koi fish have been diagnosed with Koi Herpes Virus unfortunately, you have not got other choice than depopulation (it means eliminating the entire population). This approach should be followed by disinfection of all materials and systems that have contacted the infected fish.

Benefits of Koi Ponds

The presence of a pond on a piece of real estate raises that properties “marketability” many real estate agents will tell you. This makes it easier for the agent to attract prospective buyers to the property and often plays a key role in how quickly that real estate will sell and at what price..Buyers are drawn to real estate that have such added amenities as ponds and the mystical beauty they hold and many of them are willing to pay higher asking prices to purchase a property that contains a pond. Real estate that has real market value not only increases the likelihood of a homeowner getting a higher asking price from a buyer, the real estate surrounding a property having a Koi pond are also benefited with higher values.

Koi fish pond owners report that having a personal pond to enjoy at their leisure allows them to relax and reduce the amount of stress that the average always-on-the-go lifestyle that most of us lead can cause. De-stressing near the water’s edge is also a time for getting in-touch with one’s inner- spiritual self as well. Many of these Koi fish pond owners share that they feel “rejuvenated” after spending quiet time near their pond. They report a sense of “centeredness” and feel they are more capable of handling the stresses of everyday life head-on.

Some doctors have begun to voice their opinions about the benefits of having a personal Koi fish pond. They have gained these opinions by witnessing improvements in such medical conditions as high blood pressure, anxiety disorders, and some heart conditions in patients known to have their own personal pond. Stress can exasperate these conditions and doctors are always looking for ways they can recommend to their patients for reducing the amount of stress in their lives for better health. Doctors have even found that many stroke and heart attack sufferers recover sooner when they have an area they can access frequently for relaxation, such as with a Koi pond.

Koi Fish-Pond Eliminate Stress

Pretty him the colour of the koi fish decorated, was increased by the voice sound of pond water, could eliminate the fatigue after all day long worked. Determine the Pond Function : Like the other house part, the fish-pond also needed the good maintenance. So, when making the pond pay first attention to his function for what. Will be filled up by the fish decorated or not. If being filled up by the fish, the fish kind must be matched with the pond that was made. Especially for the koi fish the depth of the minimal pond 1 meter, in order to get the koi fish quality that was good. Moreover the growth koi fish was considered to be fast. If only half meter, only could be filled up small koi. That did not lose important was to maintain the supply of water. If not the koi fish, more will keep with dirty water. Now the koi fish absolute his filter must be clean. Even so with the disposal of his waste. The system of the water filter to very important to guard water stayed clean. Don’t forget every week the pond must be cleansed of moss, and a month was very much drained his water. Indeed will be better with well water, the burden of his filter decreased. Be careful with the river water because of many wastes. Don’t too much often drained the pond, because of the koi Fish could stress.

The Elephant Nose Fish

The Elephant Nose has a distinct look all of its own and resembles no other fish due to its forked-shaped caudal fin, and, of course, the mouth with its trunk-like extension. This fish can be a dark brown or black color and features a pair of light yellowish bands that vertically extend from the back of the dorsal fin to the anal fin.

These fish are generally calm and shy in nature, preferring an aquarium with lots of plant life to hide among. They also need several places to find refuge from the light to be truly comfortable. Driftwood, clay pipes or rock formations may also be used as suitable hiding places in addition to plants.

Nocturnal in nature, the Elephant Nose will become more active at dusk and begin foraging for food. But given time, they will eventually become active in the light along with the other fish that they may live with. The Elephant Nose will do well in a tank with other larger species of fish that also are peaceful natured, but they can often be aggressive to those who are smaller in size. This is particularly true among their own species and therefore should be kept singly rather than in groups or schools.

These fish should always be kept in a tank with a secure cover with no openings as they are known to be active jumpers who creatively find ways of escaping. The Elephant Nose will fare well in a 50-gallon sized tank with good water conditions, a temperature range of around 73 to 84 degrees Fahrenheit and a PH level of 6.5 to 7.5.

Water quality is of extreme importance in order for the Elephant Nose fish to remain healthy. Interestingly enough, they are so sensitive to water conditions that some municipal companies are known to have used them to test the purity of their water samples.

The Elephant Nose belongs to the family of fish called Mormyridae and actually originates in central Africa. This fish can be found in the Zaire River as well as the Niger River and all of its tributaries. Growing as large as 13 inches in length and following a carnivorous diet, the Elephant Nose fish prefers many meaty foods such as chopped earthworms, blood worms and brine shrimp. They also enjoy flake and pellet foods along with frozen types of meats as well.

Fresh Water And Salt Water Don’t Mix

Before even setting up your tank decide what kind of fish you are going to keep, some people don’t have much time on their hands and so low maintenance cold or easy to manage tropical fish are the best ways to go, for those with much more time and a higher level of commitment there are many varied species to chose from, including the easiest to care for fresh water fish to beautiful and fascinating marine fish.

Unfortunately rushing to the pet store and picking out the prettiest, most colorful and interesting looking tropical fish is not the best way to stock the tank. Some people have synthetic decorations and rock for there fish tanks.

If you are thinking about purchasing a fish for your saltwater tank you need to plan it out first and make sure that the fish you purchase can live in the environment with the other fish. The first step to your fish tank is setting it up and this is only the beginning. After the fish tank is setup you will need to make many adjustments, some of the adjustments are the water temperature, food and lighting, plus you must consider the items and decorations that you put into the tank.

A fish tank that is a salt water tank needs to mimic the ocean, the salt water needs to be the same salinity and the environment needs to be very similar. Once you get your tank up and running with no problems you will able to enjoy the salt water tank and the fish.

Lighting is actually as important as filtration it mimics the day light and the night so fish think they are in their natural habitat. When choosing a salt water tank and filtration systems it can be a very confusing process since there are so many to choose from. One of the most important things to remember is that filtration is very important when taking care of you tank.

For freshwater fish you may be able to get by without having one. Many people think it is easy taking care of a freshwater fish, but in reality there is work involved. At time you will need to clean your freshwater tanks, they do require cleaning, so you will need to remove the fish and place them somewhere else for the time being.

When decorating the fish tank the gravel will sit at the bottom, this make the tank much more interesting and it gives a more real feel to it. Fish tank gravel can be bought in either natural or colored designs.

There are many tanks of various sizes and shapes, when choosing the tank for you home make sure the tanks size fits and it won’t be in the way or accidentally knocked over.

Cichlid Fish Care

Most cichlids come from Africa, but they are also found in Central and South America. They are found in many different kinds of waters, such as rivers, lakes and ponds. There are many different cichlid species and many different color variations.

In your cichlid tank, you must provide places for them to hide, such as large pieces of driftwood or rock caves. If you have a large species of cichlids, it is best not to put plants in their aquarium because they tend to dig up substrate materials. Other species, like the angelfish and discus prefer a planted tank.

Most cichlids like to be in water temperatures in the mid seventies. The Discus species prefers slightly higher temperatures. The staple food of your cichlid’s diet should be a large flake food, but you should also feed many different types of live and frozen foods. It’s good to have variety in their diet. If you have a large cichlid, it can even be fed earthworms and crickets.

Cichlids are very territorial which makes them aggressive. You must watch out for this aggression. If you have a mating pair, the male will usually drive away the female after mating. There needs to be somewhere for her to hide or else she can be killed. Because they are so aggressive, you should only keep them with other large fish that can stand up against them.

If you carefully select the fish, cichlids can be kept in a community tank. Dwarf cichlids work extremely well for this. They can be kept together pretty easily with schooling fish like Characins. If you keep cichlids in a tank together just make sure there is enough room for them to claim their own territory.

Large cichlids should only be kept with fish of the same size and temperament as themselves. Do not keep any large cichlid with a small fish because they will probably make them a meal.

If you decide to breed cichlids, you need to realize that there are two different types of breeders. Substrate brooders lay eggs out in the open on a surface or hidden in a cavity. They will fan the eggs to increase oxygen supply and after they hatch, the fish will look after the young until they are eating on their own and free swimming. After that, the parents will still protect the young against predators. The parents will be extremely aggressive during this time.

The other type of breeder is called a mouthbrooder. They put the eggs and larvae in their mouths. They keep them in their mouths until the young are free swimming. Most mouthbrooders stop looking after the young once they are free swimming, but others do continue to care for them by letting them go back into their mouths when there is danger.

Cichlids are really fun fish to own. There are so many different kinds of cichlids and some of the colors are truly stunning. Before you get cichlids, just try to do as much research about them as you can.

Guidelines for Crayfish Care

North American crayfish due best in waters between 60F & 75F with 72F being optimal. Australian crayfish are generally the same with the exception of Cherax Quadricarinatus (Australian Redclaw). They can handle tropical temperatures as they are from the tropical region of Australia near Queensland. Keeping any crayfish in water warmer than they are used to in nature can cause your crayfish stress, make them grow faster which in turn will cause a shorter lifespan.

All crayfish have basically the same requirements when it comes to food. They are all scavengers in nature & will eat whatever you give them or whatever they find in the tank. This includes plants & whatever fish they can catch. The general rule is a good quality shrimp pellet or one of the many specialty foods avail. Like Hikkari Crab Cuisine or HBH Crab & Lobster BITES. They also enjoy the odd frozen pea, potato & carrot. If you do it correctly the can also be trained to hand feed taking the food right from your fingers. They should be fed once per day max or every other day. Remember in nature they aren’t going to find food everyday. Once they reach approx. 6” in size this amount can be increased.

All species of crayfish are great at escaping. Trust me it’s happened to me many times when I thought it wasn’t possible. They love to climb & will find any small opening in your lid. Secure all openings around filter intakes, airlines etc. I mean secure like with duct tape. Or sheet metal & a welder. LOL just kidding. If they do get out they can survive for a few hours but only as long as their gills remain wet.

It is generally considered a bad idea to keep more than one crayfish in the same tank together as they will fight & possibly kill each other. Although this is a personal decision you will have to make as many people keep multiple crays together. If you do decide to keep multiple crayfish together make sure they have many, many hiding spots. They will need them when they molt to stay safe from predators. North American crays require at least 10 gallons per crayfish & Australians require from 30-50gals per cray depending on species as the Aussies can get VERY large.