is it always in your tank? - The Reef Tank

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Old 12-24-2006, 08:01 AM   #1
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is it always in your tank?

I dont know if i am posting this in the right forum, but here is the question. Is ich always present in every fish or does it take an infected fish to cause an outbreak? Is it posible to have an ich free tank through Q-tanks and treatment? everyons opinions are welcome but i would really like to here from you on this Geoff, your advice has helped me through alot of problems and i really value your advice. Thanks to everyone and Merry Christmas, Happy holidays to all,
P.S. I would love to here some different ideas on this thanks again.
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Old 12-24-2006, 09:57 AM   #2
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Yes ,It's always there! I feed garlic guard to my fish to prevent it,and they love it too!
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Old 12-24-2006, 03:11 PM   #3
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ok, i have another question. what do you think of a LFS that does not use any type of quarintine tanks and have a central filter system that runs to all tanks, and has fish in that system with full blown ich?
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Old 12-24-2006, 04:14 PM   #4
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I'd be very cautious about buying from them. However, it is much easier for a hobbiest to do the quarentine and treatment for ich than a store, and as hobbyis it is our responsibility totake precautions on our own to maintain the health of our tanks. I'd think twice before adding that fish to my tank, and would not unless I could put the fish into a quarentine tank before adding it to the main tank. I would add it to a tank with raised temperature (85 F)to speed up the ich's lifecycle, and hypo salinity (don't go lower than 1.009)(NOTE: Inverts cannot tolerate this low salinity), as well as feeding with garlic. I would avoid copper as a matter of course....
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Old 12-24-2006, 09:46 PM   #5
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This is what happened, I went to a new store in the greensboro area (i was visiting some relatives) i saw a hippo tang suffering from a major case of ich, this fish looked like it was batter dip and ready for the deep fry. I said to my sister-in-law (she is just getting started in saltwater) this is what ich looks like, she said to me so dont buy a fish that looks like that and i said right and dont buy a fish housed in the same tank with a fish that badly infected because you will prolly take the ich home to your tank. I guess the guy near by worked there and over heard our conversation and was offended he said, all our tanks are conected and you already have ich in your tank anyway. Now, i have been keeping saltwater for about 6 years and been keeping fish since i was 8 i dont pretend to know everything about this hobbie but when someone uses the excuse that all fish carry the ich as a way to sell an infected animal i think this is wrong and does nothing to promote the hobbie. If someone like my sister-in-law had unknowingly bought an infected animal and had to deal with this problem so quikly after starting up, well she would have prolly just give up and said i cant do this. I guess what really ticked me off was the guy said well your fish have ich to, yes maybe my fish do carry this parisite (all my fish are healthy and no signs of ich) but to say this to someone its ok if my fish are sick cause yours is. My fish are healty but i know from experince that if you bring an ich infested fish home and throw it in with other fish chances are your fish will all come down with ich. needless to say we left and didnt buy anything.
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Old 12-27-2006, 11:08 PM   #6
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Ich (C.irritans) is NOT always present in a system, and this has never been scientifically proven. It is entirely possible to have a sw system free from the parasite. Proper quarantine of all new fish/organisms is necessary to remove the risk of infestation. Sadly, many lfs owners and misinformed hobbyists still preach that all fish carry the disease and that it merely needs a trigger of sorts to manifest itself.
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Old 12-28-2006, 05:50 AM   #7
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We know more about Marine Ich (Cryptocaryon irritans) than about any other marine disease. Not because of the hobby but because of the millions spent on it from the aquaculture and fish farming industries.

This is only some of what we know about Marine Ich (MI), whether aquarists choose to believe it or not:
1. MI is an obligate parasite. It can only live and reproduce with a fish host.
2. Some fish have defenses against the parasite that gives them the opportunity to develop an immunity of sorts before the fish dies from the parasite. Consider this -- if the parasite kills all its hosts, the parasite will die too.
3. In the aquarium, the fish can't get away from the parasite so the captive nature of the aquarium benefits the parasite by shifting the 'natural' ratio towards many more parasites than fishes.
4. Regarding the reverse of 3. -- In the wild the fish travels around and can get away from large numbers of the parasite.
5. Any bony marine fish, marine water, rock, substrate, etc. from the ocean can contain the parasite in one or more of its life stages.
6. Regarding 3. -- Even a fish with great defenses cannot always handle a large outbreak of the disease.
7. Regarding 2. -- A fish in captivity can lose its immunity and defenses built up to the parasite such that a few months later when again exposed to the parasite, can die from an attack.
8. A fish can have the disease and the aquarist won't know it. The parasite primarily targets the gills where more water passes through than over the body parts. The aquarist can't see an infection in the gills.
9. Regarding 8. -- The only stage the parasite is seen is when it is at the Trophont stage (visible at the end of this infected stage as a white spot on the fish just before it drops off) on the skin or fin of the infected fish.
10. Thus regarding 9. -- A fish can even be infected on its skin and fins without being seen by the aquarist.
11. Despite all these characteristics, the parasite can be prevented from entering into any display tank.

The observations you've made and experience can all fit comfortably into what we know. However, there can be disease-free aquariums. My home aquariums have been MI free since 1990. More than 200 fishes later, still MI-free. I quarantine everything, just like is done at all public and private aquariums.

As long as there is MI lurking about in the display aquarium, there is always an opportunity for it to bloom. You are right in one sense about the stress. A stressed fish is more likely to die from the disease. It simply runs out of energy reserve before it can develop immunity or before it can survive the onslaught. But remember MI is an obligate parasite. What most people mix up is the ability of the fish to get infected with the fish dieing from the infection (where health and condition come into play).

Every fish whether healthy, stressed, sick, or strong is equally able to get infected. The weak ones just die quicker or the stronger ones IF they have the physiology may survive the attack. When it comes to infection, MI doesn't care if the fish is healthy, stressed, or sick.

Think of MI more along the terms of a Tapeworm. If a human gets the Tapeworm eggs inside, it doesn't matter if the human is healthy, sick, weak or strong. The Tapeworm takes up residence in the intestinal track. Does a sick person get them inside easier than a healthy person. No. Each kind of person gets infected by swallowing the eggs or eggs going through the skin, regardless of their health. MI parasites infect the weak as well as the strong. What is observed is that the weak die quicker or those in between show the symptoms.

The quarantine process should be less stressful than the fish being in the main display tank. What humans tend to do is project their emotions onto the fish. The fish 'looks unhappy' in the QT. Wish I had a dime for. . .

If the reader can get into the quarantine process and provide the needed optimal conditions, the reader will find that marine fish being alone in a properly sized and controlled high quality environment, being hand-fed the greatest and most nutritious diet, is the greatest thing that can happen to a newly acquired wild caught fish since it was 'yanked' out of its home.

Now let's talk about the fish that 'recovered.' What did that fish go through. Humans forget that fish feel. More studies are being done to verify the initial work which indicates that fish can 'feel.' (This will turn the whole fishing sport in turmoil--maybe! ) A fish with MI in the beginning stages is a like a human with 2 dozen mosquito bites. How does that feel? Only these mosquito bites don't all go away. They keep getting replaced until the body finally starts getting ahead of the reappearance. I don't and won't put my fish through that. I liken the 'let's wait and see approach' to "Let's see if grandma recovers from pneumonia and not take her to the hospital."

MI infection is very easily prevented and kept out of the home aquarium. Most LFSs just put copper or chemicals in their system so that the fish looks good enough to get it out of their tanks and into the aquarists' tanks. The fact that many Marine fishes come to them infected is of no surprise since the fish are kept together with other fishes along the way. So they will run the copper in their system (which the aquarist can test for, BTW) and deny it to customers or only tell those who pin them down. But the MI parasite does not have to be in the display tank. That is up to the aquarist. It is rumored that it can't be stopped by mostly those who don't want to fight it or prevent it. It is especially claimed that MI can't be stopped by those who run a bad quarantine process and blame it on the parasite rather than on the person running the quarantine
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Old 12-28-2006, 06:26 AM   #8
I'm sorry.......
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Once you get it in your main tank and it kills all of your fish do you rid your tank of the parasite? So when you add a fish in the it will not be infected by the ich in the tank?
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Old 12-28-2006, 09:34 AM   #9
I'm sorry.......
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Well I'm down 1 week and 5 more to go! Thanks Green!
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Old 12-29-2006, 03:15 PM   #10
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what does everyone think of the story in my previous post of the lfs that had an ich infected fish in a central filtrated system? when I pointed this out he became offended and said that all fish have ich anyway so it didnt matter. Would you buy any fish from this store knowing that they didnt use any type of quarintine? in the owners words every fish has ich anyway.
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Old 12-31-2006, 04:57 AM   #11
Something of everything
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The LFS people are entitled to their own opinions too.
I didn't studied this subject, because my fish never had ich - nor in FW tanks, nor in SW. I'm caucious to buy fish from the infected stores. Some LFS have a very healthy livestock. And using quarantine, of course.
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Old 01-12-2007, 12:52 PM   #12
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another thing is the parasite can come in on not only fish but on inverts, corals or snails. It is best IMo to QT all items before placing them into your main tank.. I have 5 differnt tanks.. All are parasite free, b/c I QT everything.. Even snails.
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Old 02-01-2007, 08:09 PM   #13
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philOlsen, wut if iv already treated my tank because i thought i had ich? is the sand and/or tank permanently contaminated wit the med? i used FORMALIN 37%formaldahide. does it contain any copper? how do i test for copper? i didnt quite understand, if u have ich in the display tank will it always be present in that tank?
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Old 04-09-2007, 03:46 AM   #14
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i wuold wait 8 weeks with no fish....i had two tanks set up that were both infestred with ich one tank i waited 6 weeks, the other 8 weeks. Once i put a fish in after 6 weeks in the one tank, the fish immediately got ich. when i waited 8 weeks, the other fish had no signs of ick. Wait....i know it sucks but it will be worth it
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