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Ich medicines and treatments in planted tanks
Hi all. This is my first post to the list. (Been lurking for a while.)
I've got some questions about ich medicines in planted tanks. This topic
looks to have been beaten to death in the archives, but after all my
searching and talking to various people, and I seem to get a lot of
conflicting info. :)
I have a 55 gallon planted tank, and my 2 blue rams went and got themselves
a good case of ich. (Those darn troublemakers!) A couple of the neons also
have a dot or two, but it looks pretty minor on them. (Although the neons
are tiny fish, and they aren't exactly known to be hardy fish.) The 2 blue
rams are the newest members of the tank, so their sickness is likely due to
a bit of stress and/or was carried over from the fish store. (They looked
fine at the store, but you never know...)
The guys at my local fish store told me your standard ich medicines are bad
for plants, so they tried to sell me this Garlic Extreme product from Kent.
(Basically just used as nutrient for the fish to help them heal themselves
better, rather than being a medicine against the ich.) I decided to first
look elsewhere for some advice before paying the bucks for what sounded like
snake oil. After searching the archives of this list, I found quite a few
results. Anyone have any opinions or facts on the following items I've
found in my research?
1) It looks like some people say malachite green medicines are okay for
plants, but others say they aren't. Could it be that it's bad for some
plants, but not others? All plants? Not harmful at all?
2) I've also read that adding some salt to the tank can help. But which
kind of salt? And are there any fish in particular which would *definitely*
not respond well to salt being in the water? What are the caveats to this
3) Turning up the temperature to speed up the life cycle of the ich. I can
see how this could help in conjunction with some sort of medicine or other
treatment which kills the ich. But I'm concerned for the health of my
plants, since temperatures in the low 80's seems to be the *max* most plants
can take from what I've been reading. I'm obviously hesitant to raise the
temp and damage or kill my plants.
4) Putting the tank in (complete?) darkness for some number of days. I
guess this prevents the ich from finding a host during its free-floating
stage, and thus killing it off? But how long is good enough? And how would
this affect the fish and plants?
Any other suggestions? I'd love to find a good, concrete method of treating
ich in planted tanks. A quaratine/treatment tank would be great, but at
this time I just can't do that. Definitely a consideration for down the
Thanks for any info you can send my way!