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Ailing neon tetras
A while back someone reported that their neon tetras had developed a bent
back. The general response was that it was probably neon tetra disease, which
could be treated successfully with Naladixic acid. However, the writer
reported that the fish were otherwise healthy.
I have a new plague in the tank with cardinal and neon tetras. They are being
picked off, one by one, slowly. The cardinals seem not to be affected. It
began a few months ago, when I noticed 1 developed the bent back look, and
color began to fade. He seemed to deteriorate over time, and after a bout of
ick in the tank, and treatment with copper, he, another very skinny one, and
one missing an eye, all died. I figured they were weaker and couldn't handle
either the ick, or the copper treatment.
Shortly after, another one appeared to stop eating and got very skinny. He'd
swim right past a morsel of food, and not even attempt to eat, at all. He
eventually expired. I've got another developing a bent back, with fading
color. Last week, I lost one that always had a pop-eyed look (which is hard
to tell with these little guys, but had a hammer-head shark appearance when
looking straight on). Last night, I lost one that seemed apparently healthy,
a female (with a good development of roe). I noticed that she was getting
more and more swollen where the eggs were, where it appeared that the gills
were even separating somewhat from the body and the bottom of the belly
seemed almost bursting. She was stuck to the filter this morning. Another one
is developing the same swollen look.
So, the question is--could this all be due to the same illness--neon tetra
disease? This is caused by a gram-negative bacteria, I read, so would another
antibiotic, say, a broad-spectrum antibiotic treat this? And which of these
would be safe in a planted tank. (My plants are still trying to come back
following the Aquarisol treatment). I'm wondering if some are generally
weaker due to massive breeding, and one should expect losses along the way.
I thought originally that only the weaker ones were dying, but there seems to
be something else going on. A few seemed to develop a fungal look on the eye,
again hard to see on these little fish, but there is a white spot on the eyes
of some. I thought maybe the DIY CO2 puts out more than CO2. Does the
fermentation give off another byproduct, or maybe some yeast come through,
affecting water quality? I entertained the idea that a plant fastener I used
in there was dissolving, leaching lead into the water, especially because of
acidic conditions. I don't know what the effects of this would be, but
probably not conducive to good health.
Any ideas on the above? The problem is that there are different symptoms . .
. I'm beginning to think once you've treated a tank for a plague, it's best
not to introduce new neons in. I cured a plague in the past, and they all did
well--until I brought in new fish. They seem to be very difficult, even
moreso than cardinals.
My fish and I are thankful in advance, for any advice.