NANFA-- RE: diseased sunfish
Mon, 21 Apr 2003 14:49:33 EDT

Thanks to everyone who responded to my questions about diseased fish. Here's
a synopsis of what I did to treat my fish: I did an approximate 20% water
change and plan to continue with the water changes at least twice a week. I
then took a couple of the fish with the most pronounced signs of the
"dandruff" looking disease and dipnetted them and while still in the net laid
them in a tray with regular table salt in a trace of water. I allowed the
fish to flop and made sure they flopped on both sides of their body. The
immediate result had me thinking I'd killed the fish as they arched their
bodies upon replacement into the aquarium and remained rigid without
breathing for what seemed an intolerable period of time, but was probably for
only 15-20 seconds. They sank to the bottom, basically encrusted with a thin
layer of salt, as though in shock. After the aforementioned 15-20 seconds,
very slowly, they started breathing again. And very shallow breathing.
After a couple of minutes they righted themselves and began to swim, mostly
just with their bodies and then they'd rest on a log or some plants. Their
fins were depressed next to their bodies. The salt had dissolved and they
looked like they'd just taken a drubbing. By the following morning, they
were swimming normally and ate with their normal appetite. The 'dandruff'
was all gone except for a little on their pectoral fins and none was gone
from the entire dorsal part of their body. I have yet to see any of the
pumpkinseeds try to rub their bodies on logs, rocks or anything else. The
treated fish appear and act like they feel better and are in what I'd call
good color. This was probably drastic measures, but at least the short term
results are positive. I'm now considering taking a soft paint brush with
salt to try to remove the 'dandruff' from the dorsal parts of the fish.

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