What's wrong with my goldfish

Discussion in 'Diseases' started by HugBug, Mar 4, 2021.

  1. HugBug

    HugBug

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    Is anyone able to identify what might be wrong with my goldfish?

    Background - I have (had) 10 goldfish in a 1.2m / 250L tank (probably closer to 200L in reality). 4 of them we bought about 1.5-2 years ago. The other 6 are their offspring. They are a mix of comets and commons.
    The biggest one is I reckon around 4-4.5", but the rest are closer to the 3" mark in size. The smallest one (the one in this Pic) is only 2 inches (measurements being body length, excluding tail). This fish is 9 months old.
    I know goldfish need to be in ponds etc, and I am in the process of preparing to build a pond for them.

    I do twice weekly water changes (so every 3-4 days), of around 40%. I treat the water with prime when I refill, and add in a tablespoon or more of bicarb because my tap water seems to have gotten really acidic lately, pushing the pH down to the low 6's (or lower). With the bicarb I manage to keep it at around 6.8 (with such big and frequent water changes things like crushed coral etc don't really help).

    2 weeks ago one of the other babies suddenly became very lethargic and just hid leaning against one of the chunks of wood in the tank. It looked fine physically, but was very clearly not fine.
    I removed it from the tank and put it in quarantine and then treated the tank with Artemis microbe lift.

    A few days later I started treating that fish with seachem polyguard. (unfortunately I didn't have finances to buy it straight away, so it was only about 4 days after I noticed the fish acting poorly).
    Today that fish got its last dose of polyguard. It's started eating much better this week and has more energy, but still isn't quite 100% yet.

    But then yesterday when I was doing a routine wc on this tank and noticed this one. Seemingly fine in the way its swimming etc, but looks like it's lost a ton of scales. Almost like something ate them off. I'm not sure if maybe it got trapped somewhere (there's not a lot of place to get trapped in the tank) and so got injured that way, or if it's a disease of some sort.

    Given that the other fish is using the QT tank, and also the fact that this is the second fish to have an issue in just 2 weeks, I decided to start treating the whole tank with polyguard right away.

    It would be helpful to get an actual diagnosis though of at all possible.

    No new fish have been added in well over a year. This fish was bred by me.
    I did, however, by blood worm and brine shrimp (both frozen) on Sunday which I started giving them this week. It's since that that the other sick fish has perked up, but also since that that this one is now looking like this.
    Other than that nothing new in this tank.
    I feed them Hikari goldfish food generally. 20210304_150616.jpg 20210304_150312.jpg 20210304_150432.jpg 20210304_150510.jpg 20210304_145808.jpg

    The other side of the fish looks very similar, but he refuses to swim in the opposite direction for me to get a picture.
    It's normally completely orange.
     
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  3. Nina_W

    Nina_W

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    I hope someone else comes along soon to help, but to my eyes, that looks like columnaris, which needs an anti-biotic to treat it, with some urgency. Please wait for confirmation - I am not the best at diseases, but maybe this response will bump the post for you also.
     
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  4. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    Yes sorry but that’s columnaris IMO too. Seachem Kanaplex ASAP. Sorry to be the barer of bad news but this fish is probably not going to make it through the night. You still need to dose the tank TODAY if you want to save your other fish. Nasty bug and fast killer... hope I’m wrong :(
     
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  5. Shabir

    Shabir

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    Hi. Yes looks like columnaris to me too. Had this affect a goldfish in one of my old tanks and he didn't last through the night. I believe once you can see it then it's already too far infected
     
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  6. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    In hindsight that’s what I lost my pearl gouramis to in the early days
     
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  7. OP
    HugBug

    HugBug

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    Thanks everyone.
    I've now Google columnaris and at first wasn't convinced because it kept showing cottonwool growths, which this fish doesn't have. But then I found this site (https://fishlab.com/columnaris/) which explains it really well and does match pretty much exactly.

    I did start dosing polyguard last night.
    I find these seachem meds so confusing because they largely all say they treat the same things. I opted for polyguard when choosing something for the first sick fish because it basically said its the strongest medicine in the seachem range and good when you don't know exactly what you're treating. It also treats bacterial infections.

    Kanaplex doesn't seem to list its ingredients but I assume it's kanamycin.
    I can go and see if I can get some tomorrow. I wonder if I can dose both kanaplex and polyguard though or if I must stop the polyguard. The link above mentioned dosing 2 different meds as most effective. I'm not sure if we have the first one he mentions, or of polyguard is similar. I need to Google that more.

    The fish still seems fine. Will keep a close eye though.
    He isn't being bullied whereas I think if I put the other one back right now in order to qt this one it will be cast out. The others were staying far away from him before I moved him to the qt. They don't seem phased with the new sick one.
    I now wonder if they're both columnaris just presenting differently.
    There is apparently a fast acting strain and a slow strain so it's possible mine have the slow strain.
    Will see what tomorrow brings.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2021
  8. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    Columnaris does present differently- eg cotton mouth vs saddle back (your presentation). I would stop the Polyguard and use Kanaplex
     
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  9. Zuraki

    Zuraki

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    Sorry to hear about this @HugBug I actually had the same problem with my boesmani male rainbow. He has been showing gradual signs of skin lesions and loss of scales since the end of November last year. I didnt see any negative impact in his behaviour though. He even tried courting the female a couple of times. I also dosed polyguard, but have not seen any results.

    Like you, I was also breaking my head over the cause since so many of the diseases share similar symptoms. One thing that stood out to me from your post is that the only possible disease vector that you indicate are the bloodworms. This is also what I have been feeding them regularly and potentially the only vector for disease. My worst fear is that it was viral - something like KHV which is terminal and can not be treated.

    I have been using Metroplex (Active ingredient metronidazole) since late Jan combined with malachite green. While he still have some lost scales, there are no signs of inflamation and he is as active as ever. I do agree with @A new day that a broad spectrum antibiotic such as Kanaplex in combination with Neoplex and possibly Focus to bind it to food is best. I recently bought this. It is pricey though, but this is what has been working for me. All the best and I hope you manage to save him.
     
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  10. Hendrik Bergh

    Hendrik Bergh

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    So happy to find this thread. I have been dealing with similar symptoms with my Rosy Tetras. A few weeks back one just died out the blue. Then last week another Rosy started acting strange. She was skinny and presented with a curved spine. She was hiding and swimming strange but had no visible lesions or other symptoms. At first I thought it might be Neon Tetra disease and treated her in a Hospital tank with Polyguard even though most sites say there is no cure. But I didnt want to euthanize. She didnt make it though.

    Yesterday, I noticed a similar white patch on another Rosy. Same as in your Goldfish. He is acting normally and still eating, but also hiding and his Dorsal fin looks a bit frayed. It is a planted tank and the other inhabitants include Cardinal Tetras, Ramshorn and Nerite snails.

    I also have Kanaplex, Metroplex and Paraguard on hand but Seachem meds confuse me sometimes as some disease treatments overlap each other. Here's my questions.

    Which meds would be best and would you treat the whole tank or just the affected fish?
    Would it be best to use medicated food or treat the water?
    And, lastly, will combining meds give better results? Example, Kanaplex in food, Paraguard in the water.
    Thank you and good luck!
     
  11. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    @HugBug how’s the goldfish doing?
     
  12. OP
    HugBug

    HugBug

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    I only had polyguard on hand, i still haven't been able to get kanaplex (though I do intend to).
    The fish that first went wonky but had no outward symptoms, perked up enormously after about a week of polyguard. Started eating again too and go so much better I was seriously considering putting him back in with the others on sunday (the end of his medication cycle).

    But then the one that was still in the tank suddenly got all those white marks, and so I started dosing that whole tank with polyguard because i had nowhere else to move that fish too. I didn't want to move the original back in whilst still medicating the whole tank.

    The one with white spots has been looking better and better by the day. All the fish in that tank still look good.
    The polyguard doesn't seem to affect the ramshorns at all - they are breeding up a storm in the hospital tank and still doing their thing in the main tank. I don't think I would risk it with nerites though - maybe move them out, even into a jar or something, while medicating. I believe nerites are much more sensitive to medications that ramshorns are.

    The original fish, whilst looking so awesome over the weekend, as soon as his medication cycle finished, has now been deteriorating this week again. So I've restarted the polyguard in the hopes that it will buy me enough time to get to Friday when I can get some kanaplex to try.

    The seachem meds also confuse me because, as you say, they all seem to claim to treat the same things.
    I actually emailed them as a result and asked which is best for columnaris (which is what they call mouth rot). And htey told me definitely kanaplex.

    I'm not confident enough to mix two meds at the same time, but I'm definitely willing to try a full course of one, followed by a full course of another if necessary, so in my case a full course of polyguard, followed by a round of kanaplex.
     
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  13. A new day

    A new day Moderator

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    Ok yes good luck. Kanaplex is shrimp and snail safe (even nerites) but paraguard with nerites is a risk.

    Suppose it all depends on how confident you are in the diagnosis. If indeed columnaris I would stop the paraguard and treat the WHOLE tank with Kanaplex.

    But at least the paraguard seems to have kept your fish alive in the interim so that’s cool.

    The different meds are because some bacterial infections are gram positive and some are gram negative.
     
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  14. OP
    HugBug

    HugBug

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    It's polyguard, not the paraguard.
    Polyguard they claim is their most potent meds and treats pretty much everything all together.

    But yes, I am treating the whole tank because the fish with the white stuff is in that tank. And I will treat the whole tank with kanaplex when I get some as well, just to be sure, because the fish in the quarantine tank was so much better with the polyguard but clearly still not quite 100%, and so as soon as that finished he went back to just lying around. So I need to treat all of them (full tank, as well as QT) with kanaplex just to be sure it's fully wiped out. I think the polyguard is basically keeping it at bay for now, but maybe not wiping it out altogether.
     
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  15. BoelderBeestie

    BoelderBeestie

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    Are you using sponge filters or a lot of batting in a sump?
     
  16. OP
    HugBug

    HugBug

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    I have 2 Qanvee-200A (each is 2 sponges so 4 sponges total) with seachem denitrate in their media compartments, and a Dophin F1200 internal filter, with the sponge it came with, and then seachem denitrate and crushed coral in the area where the charcoal was.
     
  17. BoelderBeestie

    BoelderBeestie

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    You can add more shells or coral to the filter or even your tank, it takes a few tries to get it to do what you want. I prefer shells over coral, very pure source. It's your sponges that's dropping your pH so rapidly. The debris they collect adds to your bioload. Unkept canisters and batting do the same. They are referred to as "nitrate factories". I don't use sponges at all anymore, makes my water very unstable.
     

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