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Re: Continued Icky Discussion.

> ...it's not like _Ichthyophthirius_ is a recently-discovered malady,
> or that it's life cycle isn't adequately described in just about *any*
> aquarium reference (in particular those aimed toward the tank's health), or
> anything. Shoot, looking in a book certainly takes all of the fun out of
> guessing, doesn't it?
> Ich occurs in three stages -

I took it for granted that most, if not all, the people involved in this thread
would know that the free swimming stage is that is being discussed here,
but thanks for the review. <g>

> Raising the temperature of the environment has the same effect on the
> free-swimmer as it does on the rest of the inhabitants - metabolism is
> increased, and along with it come energy expenditures. Working from its
> limited reserves, this proportionally decreases the time available for the
> free-swimmer to find a host and "establish" itself.

Yes, I know that, but is there a *point* of temperature that the free swimming
parasite cannot tolerate -- not merely reproduce faster and starving to death
without a host? I guess you're saying "no" here. This also goes for the osmotic
differences...at what point...? I've never seen such in the literature I've read.

You mentioned 48 hours as to the time limit that free swimmers may need to acquire
a host under "average" conditions. Baensch, v.1. states that "the cyst can divide
into as many as 1,000 zoospores which have 70 hours to find a host." With that
many zoospores per cyst, I find it difficult to fathom that outbreaks of ich can
be cured by "natural means" of heat...unless this involves the outright death of
the free swimming parasite...or a *very short period* of time that the parasite
attempts to find a host before it "starves." At 90F or slightly above, I wonder
what that "window" is?

> Light? Well, there's not one mention of light in conjunction with freshwater
> Ich that I can find outside of any *UseNet/Internet* postings. Seems that
> somewhere along the line a few people got confused with things like
> anecdotal evidence, other diseases or simple misinformation. (I suppose you
> could make a limited case for lighting if you were to argue the effects of
> sufficient UV exposure, though.)

I do remember reading some *speculation* about light and it's possible role in
the stages of the parasite. That was prior to 1983. It made for interesting
reading, but I can't remember anything more about it, including what publication
it was in.

> The books will also tell you that the simplest, safest and most effective
> addition one can make to the tank, if appropriate, are compounds made from
> or containing combinations with Malachite Green - the "active ingredient" in
> things like Wardley's "Ick Away" or Jungles' "Ick Guard", etc. It's just too
> bad that Malachite Green is listed as a carcinogen for people and may be
> removed from the market before long. At standard, recommended dosages, the
> only lingering after-effects I've seen from its use is green silicon
> sealant. It's never affected fish as sensitive as Dicrossus filamentosus,
> Microgeophagus ramerizi or Julidochromis ornatus, and hardier fish
> apparently don't even notice its addition to the tank.

I've never kept the fish you've mentioned, so I certainly can't comment on them.
However, I don't believe everything I read. <g> A concern of mine is that I have
an emotional and financial investment in my 8 - 4"+ Botia sidthimunki. I would
certainly hesitate to use Malachite Green on any Botia that has ich, especially
having personally experienced what it can do to B. macracanthus, even at 1/2

> Substitutes for Malachite Green is the only opening I can discern for
> "anecdotal evidence" in the discussion concerning Ich. Descriptions of the
> organism and its life cycle are so well documented that I'm personally at a
> loss as to why so many people must "guess" at such things.

I think people may be guessing because the information on ich filtered to the
lay person is quite basic. You can take this to mean that "there's nothing more to
this story..." or perhaps "it begs for more detail for a fuller understanding"
What are the limitations of the parasite? I'm quite curious about all this, and
the books simply do not go far enough. I still have questions, and I guess the
only way I can have them
answered is to check at the university level. I've learned that the U. of Georgia
has a good web site on ich, and I've emailed them with some questions.

David, thanks for your post -- as well as everyone else. This has been an
interesting thread...and I'm not surprised about the variety of responses....
especially after I learned that there's not a single, agreed upon method on
how to set up a planted aquarium. <g>


Walter B. Klockers
Plano, TX