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Neon Tetra Disease?

Author Topic: Neon Tetra disease?  (Read 2599 times)

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Offline TrenchyLs

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Neon Tetra disease?
« on: July 30, 2017, 01:03:50 PM »
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I have 8 Neon Tetra in my tank.

Ever since the plants in my tank started to take over, they spend there time at the bottom of the tank, in the margins of the planted areas.  This seems to be pretty standard behaviour but does make it difficult to find them all and see how they are doing.  In fact, it's been well over a month since I last saw all eight at the same time.

Today I managed to catch sight of one hiding deep in the plants.  It is much smaller than the rest and almost completely grey, with only the slightest hint of blue and red markings.

I'm about to break out the quarantine tank again (sooner than I'd like as the sponge filter has only been running in my main tank for a fortnight) but I'm not looking forward trying to catch him in the undergrowth.

From what I've read, it's incurable and highly contagious amongst certain breeds  :-\

Any other suggestions for preventing further cases apart from keeping the water as clean as possible?

Thanks.

Offline Matt

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2017, 01:26:08 PM »
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Can you advise if the fish is breathing heavily? This will narrow things down a little.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2017, 02:34:02 PM »
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Apart from quarantining the sick fish until you can confirm the diagnosis, and keeping the main tank spotless with plenty of syphoning of substrate & water changes, that's all the information I can find.
Sorry I can't be of more help.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2017, 02:40:37 PM »
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Another article suggests completely stripping down the tank and cleaning everything with a parasitic treatment, and letting everything dry completely, to help kill off any spores that may remain in the tank.
Hopefully the more experienced keepers will be able to offer some advice on your situation.

Offline TrenchyLs

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2017, 02:41:33 PM »
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I finally caught it and can confirm it's definitely capable of a fair turn of speed when needed!

I've got a picture, not fantastic because I've only got a phone.


Typically, now that it's out, the colours aren't too bad actually.
The white mark on the front of the anal fin looks more like pigmentation than anything ominous.  A few of the other Neons have similar marks (sometimes on dorsal or tail fin too).  A quick Google shows these marks on a lot of stock photos of Neon Tetras so I'm not too worried about it.

After a bit of an initial explore, it's taken up residence behind the heater.  Tank is at 28 degrees so it's not because they're cold.

Water is the usual:
pH - 7.5
Ammonia - 0
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - 20 to 40

@Matt No signs of heavy breathing or gasping.

I'm beginning to think that maybe this little guy/gal is just malnourished because it's too shy to come out for food!

Offline TrenchyLs

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2017, 02:46:34 PM »
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Another article suggests completely stripping down the tank and cleaning everything with a parasitic treatment, and letting everything dry completely, to help kill off any spores that may remain in the tank.
Hopefully the more experienced keepers will be able to offer some advice on your situation.

That doesn't sound like much fun!

Been planning to replace my substrate and open up the planting a bit at some point, but not ready for it yet  :yikes:

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2017, 02:55:04 PM »
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Stripping down the tank wouldn't be much fun, either for you or your fishy friends.
Syphoning the substrate and doing water changes seems a sensible option for now.
A few articles also suggest using a general anti-bacterial treatment, just in case the illness is not NTD, but I don't know enough about this sort of thing.

Offline Sue

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2017, 04:23:18 PM »
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The photo doesn't fit with the descriptions I've read of NTD.

Red area washed out and blue stripe with a yellow colour a bit like velvet
Black lining round tail area
Bent spine
Lumps on the belly that go to a point.

The only things that fit your description are being restless and leaving the shoal, but this applies to other conditions as well.

The fish in your photo does look a bit on the skinny side though. I would be more inclined to put it down to some sort of internal infection, be it bacteria, viral, protozoan or worms - though you would see things like red threads hanging from the anus with worms.
The problem is deciding what it is to know which treatment to use. For bacterial infection, eSHa 2000; for protozoan, Waterlike Octozin; but for viral there is nothing, I'm afraid.

Offline MarquisMirage

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2017, 04:40:30 PM »
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Totally agree with Sue that this isn't neon tetra disease.  The bent spine is a give away and there's difficulty swimming (inc. shimmying and aimless wandering).  It's very noticeable.  Sick fish don't so much leave the shoal as get chased away from it which adds to the stress on the fish.   

Offline TrenchyLs

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2017, 05:55:04 PM »
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Thanks for all the replies and advice folks.

Happy to hear I've probably dodged the NTD bullet.

Now that he's in the quarantine, he looks like a different fish.  For a while I thought I'd actually caught the wrong one, but I've accounted for 7 fat and happy Tetras in the main tank! Perhaps he was still asleep when I first saw him, I know their colours really wash out then.

@Sue The only medication I have at the moment is Interpet Anti Internal Bacteria+  Active ingredients seem to be Formaldehyde, Bronopol and Benzalkonium Chloride.  Google says all 3 are biocides so I might give it a go in the absence of other medicines.

Also, while we're on the subject of medication, what would be you recommendations for a fishy first aid kit?  I need to get some tea tree oil because it's a handy thing to have (I use it in my shaving oil), so I can make my own Melafix if required and I'm assuming eSHa 2000, but what else? 

Actually, I've just been reading LF's rivertank thread and I think the answer is in there:  2000, EXIT, gdex and ndx.  Would it still be worth getting the Octozin, or do these cover most things?

Offline Sue

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2017, 06:47:29 PM »
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Be careful with tea tree oil. I know it's not quite that in Melafix, but years ago I added both Melafix and Pimafix to my tank and killed a shoal of golden/Beckford's pencilfish. Just a heads up for anyone who has these fish.
(I added the two -fixes to the tank, they are supposed to be safe together, then went to watch Countdown. When I went back to the tank all but one fish was dead and the last one died shortly afterwards - all in the space of 45 mins)

The most common infections are the ones to keep meds for. That's whitespot and finrot. Things like gdex and ndx are useful for treating fish in quarantine; fish shouldn't catch these parasites once they are in your tank unless you use live food from very iffy sources.
There is a growing opinion that a lot of fish nowadays are infected with protozoans in their gut, and Hamaplong told me that Octozin contains dimetronidazole which kills protozoa.

Offline TrenchyLs

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2017, 07:16:43 PM »
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Yeah, there are quite a few Melafix horror stories around, sorry to hear you fell foul of it too.  Tea tree oil is for me, but in a crunch I could re-purpose it but will remember to only use on isolated fish in quarantine.

And the only fish purpose I'm planning in the future is a solitary Betta so I'll get the 2000, EXIT and Octozin, but hold off on the gdex and ndx for now.

Thanks.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2017, 07:21:18 PM »
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Glad to hear that the little one is looking better in quarantine.
No sign of NTD is a huge relief.  :)

Offline Hampalong

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #13 on: July 30, 2017, 08:47:27 PM »
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My own medicine cabinet used to contain Sterazin, Protozin, Myxazin and Octozin. These cover most diseases you're likely to encounter, are very effective and easy to use, and kind to fish, plants and filter bacteria.


These days I don't keep treatments on purpose, because
all diseases are stress-related (be it physical, environmental, whatever), and I have the experience to keep fish relatively stress-free. I buy fish riddled with White Spot knowing that after a few days in a stress-free tank with stress-free tankmates, stress-free water and a Protozin course they'll be happy and healthy again. The recovery starts straight away, and the tankmates don't get White Spot because they're not stressed.


Offline Hampalong

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2017, 07:00:47 PM »
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...and now the necessary explanation of my previous post...

I'm not suggesting you buy diseased fish - far from it. Its just that people think you need to watch out for diseases, and keep a supply of every medicine you might need. We should rather be teaching people to understand the needs of the fish more, because if you look after the water and keep fish stress-free (including suitable decor and tankmates) they don't get diseases in the first place.

To be blunt, a hobbyist who is always tackling diseases does not yet know how to look after their fish.

As a beginner, expect to maybe get White Spot and/or fungus. Protozin is all you need for both of these. Sterazin kills worms, which fish can have when you get them. Apart from those you shouldn't need much else. Bear in mind also that a fresh bottle is always better than one that has stood around unused.

Protozin kills fungi and protozoa.
Myxazin kills harmful bacteria.
Sterazin kills worms and flukes.
All three contain small doses of the other two, to prevent secondary infections.
Other medicines are available.

Offline TrenchyLs

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2017, 08:35:58 PM »
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Thanks @hampalong

Happy fish = Healthy fish!

Just odd that the rest of the tank is fine, including the other Neons.  Oh well, he seems reasonably happy in the quarantine at the moment and is hiding less.  I'll give him a fortnight and see how he responds to food over the nest few days.

Offline Littlefish

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #16 on: July 31, 2017, 10:20:24 PM »
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Good job we have the internet. I can't imagine how difficult things would be without immediate access to so much information, and being able to keep in touch with more experienced keepers.

Fingers crossed for your little fella in quarantine.

Offline Sue

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Re: Neon Tetra disease
« Reply #17 on: August 01, 2017, 08:54:19 AM »
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I can't imagine how difficult things would be without immediate access to so much information, and being able to keep in touch with more experienced keepers..

I can, that's what it was like when I first had fish. You had to rely on books, a lot of which were out of date, and to trust what the shop worker said.  :yikes:


Mind you, there is a lot of dodgy information on the internet as well  :-\

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