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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Ichthyophthirius Multifiliis / Ich / Ick / White Spots Part II

Disclaimer: Please note that the purpose of this article is to share with you my experience in tackling the above. Not in anyway a guaranteed method. Blogger will not be held responsibile for any deaths in your tank, explosions that might occur or your parents/partner yelling due to the wet floor. Thank you.

Hello readers,

Firstly, thank you for dropping by my blog. I do hope the information in here has helped you one way or another. I've been checking my stats and it shows that a lot of you people around the world has this problem with white spots.

Don't be discourage. It is a very common problem. But I can see that our Western friends might have a bit more of problems with theirs. You guys are in a cold climate. As such, the parasite life cycle is slower than ours. I live in Singapore for those who don't already know and the temperature of my tanks fluctuates depending on time of the day. The highest I've recorded was 31.2 (Degrees Celcius) DC at 13:00hrs. We are facing some wet spells here so temperature has been good for my fish at 26 DC.

So for my Western friends, you guys need a heater. Turn it up and medicate.

Now, I've been asked and read the same questions on Icks/Ichs. The following are some of the questions being asked and I try to answer them as best as I possibly can; based on my experience. It might not be right but it works for me.

Q: Are white spots common?
Yes, it is. Everyone will face it at least once or more. There are lucky ones who never encounter it.

Q: I bought my fish and select them carefully, when I introduce them into my tank, I get the white spots after a few days.
When you first purchase your fish, you will not be able to see them. I observed that fish that has recover from ichs don't tend to get it again. True or not, I've yet to get another outbreak from existing tank. The cyst might be attached to the mucus of the fish or the fish store net you're using to catch them has the parasite in it. So that might be the reason how you've transported the ich home.

There are great fish store like the ones here in Singapore, Green Chapter. They quarantine their fish before selling. I might be wrong but it's a good thing that a fish store is taking a step to ensure healthy fish.

Q: You mentioned about Sera product, can I use other brands?
Of course! I read where others have been successful with many "value for money" brands. It's all about following instruction carefully. If you have fear about putting too much of it, reduce it a bit. The key here is patience and following instructions.

Ocean Free brand
Credit to ahpek_lion, member of 

Waterlife brand

Q: Some of my fish and shrimps died, what did I do wrong?
Other than you might have dose too much, you did nothing else wrong. Shrimps are very sensitive creatures. Especially those CRS. They will die with the medication. It is advisable to remove them if you want to treat the tank or less the dosage. As for the fish, it is inevitable that there will be some deaths.

Dead shrimps. YummY!!

Q: My fish has the white spots all over them, should I remove them into another tank and treat? I don't want the medication to affect my plants.
Not necessary. Again, if you have shrimps, you might want to remove them and place in another tank for the time being if you're worried they might die from the medication. The tank should be treated. Where the ichs are seen, that tank should be treated.

And no, I have yet to encounter anyone complaining about the medication affecting the plants.

Q: How long exactly should I stop medication?
When you observe no white spots on all your fish, keep doing the medication for another 7 days. This is to ensure the parasites in the water are dead.

Q: Do I really need to increase the temperature to 30DC? I don't want to affect my plants.
Your choice. The reason why it is recommended is so that the life cycle of the parasite is hasten. This will allow the medication to kill it off when they come out from their cyst. Hence, the colder the tank is, the slower the life cycle of this parasite will be.

My plants are doing well even when the temperature have gone to 31DC. Some people exaggerate that plants will die and all. Last year we had a crazy heat spell. Was really bad. What happened? Temperature hit 32DC for my tanks at certain times.

You cannot have the best of all worlds. Its either you risk some browning plants or your fish dies. Its your choice. Be responsibile towards living things under your care.

Credit to

Q: Should I do water changes during medication?
Yes or no, both works the same. So it's fine. Do water change or not. But be mindful of your fish. You don't want to change the "chemistry" of the tank suddenly. Do your usual water changes if you want. I did my usual 30-40% water change weekly.

Q: Why do these ichs attack our fishes?
I ain't a scientist dude. I don't even know why chimpanzees haven't evolve and use a hammer yet. I'm just like you. A fish/aquarium/planted tank hobbyist. Observe, research, seek advice, plan and execute.

Q: I followed your guide and my fish died?!
-_-' I'm sharing purely on my own experience and observation. Every hobbyist must be responsible for his own pet. It is better to treat them than to let them be. Death is inevitable. Blaming someone else for their deaths is a sin. LOL.

Q: Why are you so mean?
Why are you asking a dumb question?

LOL. Okay folks. I do hope this helps a bit. Do your best for your livestocks and all the best. If I encounter any new stuffs on this subject, I'll update you guys again.

For now, good luck!

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