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Disease In Saltwater Aquariums

Dec 6, 2007
If a fish or coral in your saltwater aquarium contracts a disease, it is essential that you are able to identify this right away and quarantine any infected livestock, or you will quickly have an epidemic on your hands which will be distressing. Of course, not all diseases will be fatal to your livestock, and most are treatable. But, to prevent all of your livestock from perishing, you must act quickly. Here are some tips to help.

One of the more common conditions among fish when you first create your aquarium is called delayed mortality syndrome, or DMS. DMS occurs to a fish when new environmental conditions are thrust upon it like changes in temperature, oxygen level, or chemicals in different water then what they were transferred from, so all of your fish will be susceptible when first introduced into your tank. This condition is not the problem in and of itself, as it is not contagious and only serves to weaken the immune system of the fish.

It is important that when a fish seems to exhibit symptoms of a disease that your first step is to check all of your water factors such as ammonia, nitrate, nitrite, alkalinity, and anything else that, if at the wrong level, might harm the fish rather than provide a safe environment. If you have any doubt at all, change the water. If the problem was your levels instead of an actual disease, then you will see a change in your livestockfs behavior shortly after the water change.

However, if it is not the environment and your livestock does have a disease, then one of the best resources for identification and cure is the Disease Aquarium Identification Guide. Of course, if you can get your fish to a veterinarian you may get a quicker, more professional diagnosis. But if you canft, then the DAIG is your best bet for identification and cure.

If your environmental conditions are right, and you have changed the saltwater in your tank, then your fish are ill with either a disease or a parasite infection, and now you need to move onto the diagnosis phase by either seeing the veterinarian or using the DAIG. You know your fish and what they normally do in their little fishy lives. So if one or many of them start acting abnormally, start working to figure out the problem immediately. Here is a list of common symptoms that are indicators that your fish is not well.

œ Scratching

œ Rapid shallow breathing

œ Hyperactivity

œ Twitching

œ Reduced appetite

œ Clamped or enlarged fins

œ Faded colors

œ Hanging out near the top of the tank

œ Cloudy eyes

œ Little red dots lining the body

œ Hides more than usual or becomes listless in behavior

Obvious signs of parasites are if your fish has lesions, is swollen, generates white patches or has stringy white feces.

Most diseases are curable as long as they are identified in the early stages. There are medicines available. Seawater livestock can get sick, get parasites, or will react adversely in conditions that are unfavorable. By understanding what conditions your fish may contract, you will greatly aid them in their time of need.
About the Author
SaltySupply.com offers the most premium aquarium supplies on the net. We offer protein skimmers, powerheads, pumps and more for your saltwater aquarium.
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