itching or playing ?

Q&A about diseases and their cure

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itching or playing ?

Post by Cassandra » Sat Oct 09, 2004 2:36 pm

Dear Pam

I read you answer enclosed below, but I´m not quite sure if this is the same as my question..?

I´ve only had tropheus for 2 days and know very little of their behaviour. Some of them sort of dip the sand. bends over and takes a short dip. no white spots anywhere.
Is this a normal behavior ? or could it be a disease ? I have moliro, bemba and Kachese in the tank
besides from this they are very active and seem content
best regards Cassandra

Dear Pam,

In one of my 55 gallon tanks, I have a number of fish itching themselves on anything that doesn't move. Every once in a while one of the fish will twitch uncontrollably for a few seconds while rubbing on a rock or in the gravel. Is this the sign of some parasites? If so, what can I do to get rid of these "unwelcome guests".


Dear Kevin,

When I see this type of behavior in my tanks, it is usually "ick". This is the first sign of the problem. You can increase the temperature of your tank, and this is also a good reason to always add salt to you tanks. Both will deter the propagation of "ick". Normally it appears when there has been a fluctuation of temperature in the tank. Spring and Autumn time of the year is classic for "ick" to show up. The days are warm and the nights are colder. Make sure you have your heater plugged back in, if you have unplugged it for the summer.

Take a good look at your fish, and if you see the white specks on the body, you may want to treat it. Read the directions carefully and if you have catfish in the tank, read the special directions for fish with no scales.
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Pam Chin
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Post by Pam Chin » Sat Oct 09, 2004 7:06 pm

Hi Cassandra,

It is hard to say, they could just be playing in the sand. You just need to keep and eye on them and look for white spots in the next few days. If you don't see any then I wouldn't worry about it. Ick is naturally in the water, and healthy fish can normally fight it off. A stable temperatureis the best for these fish, it is the up and down that can stress them, and allow the ick to take over. For this group of fish your want your temperature around 76 - 78 degrees.

You shouldn't buy fish without knowing something about them. Tropheus do best in large groups of the same species, in a large aquarium. They don't mix well with other fish or with other species of Tropheus. The ideal situation is around 24 fish in a 100 gallon tank. It is not impossible to keep one or two, but it can be tough. They are strict vegetarians, however, they will eat anything offered. High protein foods are not good for them as they can develop intestinal problems, aka bloat.
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