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Setting up a quarantine tank/Plant nursery

EA James

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22 Jul 2019
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Staines-upon-Thames
Hi all,

I've got a small 25L tank to use as a quarantine tank that i have used in the past as a hospital tank. I haven't quarantined fish before but because of the reasons for needing a hospital tank i think It's asfer for me to do so!

How long should the fish be in there before i add them into the main tank?
Should i treat these fish with any medications while they're in there?
Do i put anything in the tank or leave it bare?

Also, for the tank i have a small filter with a sponge in it, the sponge has a cut out on the inside of it that i put some media in (standard Fluval ceramic rings) from my FX4. It can only fit about 5 rings in it so would that be enough for the tank to be stable? I was going to cut the foam in half to fit more in but i think the rings need to be kept in the dark? I'm sure I've read that somewhere before????

Any other tips would be great

Cheers
James
 

Paul Kettless

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17 Aug 2015
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Lowestoft
good question, and I have been searching the history for similar information with little joy. shall be watching this post with interest.
 

MirandaB

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Suffolk/Norfolk Border
I usually quarantine a minimum of 2 weeks on captive bred and 4 weeks on wild caught fish.
My lfs are very good and I'll observe the fish in there over a couple of weeks and they let me know if they've had problems with a particular batch.
Unless something shows up during qt the only treatment I do is worming.
Whilst I leave the tank bare bottomed I will add some moss and floating plants just to give the fish a bit of security as I always have surplus of those so not a problem if they needed to be thrown away.
For me filtration is not a huge issue as I have a lot of mature filters on the go so take a bit of media from those when needed.
I use the APS corner filters as you can remove the foam they come with and fit some bio media in there easily enough.
 

John q

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Lancashire
You could always put the small sponge filter inside the fx4 for a week or two prior to getting the fish. If time isn't on your side then the rings would work assuming low stock.

Medication? Two camps some only treat when signs of illness appear and some treat just in case.
Personaly I'd agree with miranda about worming and assume most other illnesses would show within 2-3 weeks.
Decor, I'd put some form of shelter in there, plant pot/cave e t.c and a basic plant wouldn't do any harm.

Cheers.
 

EA James

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Staines-upon-Thames
Okay @MirandaB that's great, thank you. Is there a specific worming treatment you'd recommend?
I've got plenty of spare plants and floaters i can use so I'll do that, i always felt sorry for the fish in that tank before, firstly because they were sick but secondly the empty look of a bare tank. Just didn't feel right to me!
The filter i have is the Superfish Aqua Flow 50, You can remove the foam from this too. Would i be better off removing it and filling the chamber with my mature media?

Cheers for the reply @John q. Stock will be low, When i can get back out i want another couple of Honey Gourami and some Oto's and a few more Cory's but I'll get them on separate occasions as the QT tank is still too small for them all together. Not a problem, just another reason to back to the LFS 😂

Cheers
 

MirandaB

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If you can get a reasonable amount of mature media into that filter then I would probably ditch the sponge,plenty of plants will also help out if stocking is low.
I tend to go straight for a levamisole based wormer such as Esha NDX as Camallanus worms seem to be the prevalent type certainly in fish from Asia.
Last thing you want to be dealing with in a planted tank as they can be a bit of a sod to get rid of.
 

Simon Cole

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25 Dec 2018
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656
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Buckingham
My set up:
bare glass
air stone
perch near the top of tank (high oxygen) for bettas
plastic ornament to provide shelter and low point perch
glass lid

A Typical Procedure -
decontaminate tank and equip. with potassium permanganate and rinse.
add isostatic-balanced salts to rehydrate fish (first few hours, up to 1 day)
water change
take fish into tub with powerful air-stone held by net and administer potassium permanganate (PP) bath (usually up to 15 minutes depending upon strength, disease and fish)
add antibiotic etc. to tank - aerate
replace fish
optimise diet (whatever the cost if your fish only take mosquito larvae - you find them)
fully replace water at appropriate integrals - depends upon half-life or metabolites build up from the primary treatment. remove the fish to an aerated bath during this process. re-dose as appropriate. You can also use smaller doses of PP or salts while you bath the fish.
stimulate the fish - put tank next to other species, feed by hand, slow-flows, light settings etc.
Some antibiotics take up to a month. For worming and parasite treatment you will need to adapt your own procedure.

Key points -
Isostatic balance through salts
Topical treatment with PP as baths
Diet
Effective antibiotics - appropriate duration and suitable disposal
Aeration
Stimulation

This should be adapted to your situation and treatment plans. Good luck. I have cured Bettas from columnaris this way.
 

alto

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24 Dec 2014
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administer potassium permanganate (PP) bath
Take care with PP baths - scientific studies showed this actually increased infectivity for some Columnaris strains
Soft acidic water reduces infectivity for most Columnaris strains (but not really the best solution for guppies which seem to be the most Columnaris prevalent fish in lfs)

isostatic-balanced salts to rehydrate fish
Do you have some links on this (I admit I’m too lazy to look myself :sorry: - especially if you've got them to hand)
 

alto

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24 Dec 2014
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Symptom Based Treatment of Common Discus Diseases by Dionigi Maladorno
(thanks to Dave H for continuing to host this fantastic article)

This article is still well worth the printing - just choose the most relevant sections to keep at hand

Not sure if it’s my fading memory or if this hosted version is missing the bits (I swear) I recall (perhaps a different version) - details on quarantine times, introduction of main tank fish to “share” normal flora with the new fish (still in Q tank), followed by introduction of limited numbers of new fish into the established tank, and finally complete assimilation

Some of this is overboard for most community fish (no one shares and “improves” upon diseases like discus, especially the more delicate lines)
 
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Simon Cole

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25 Dec 2018
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Buckingham
scientific studies showed this actually increased infectivity for some Columnaris strains
The theory would be that the fish is damaged by the PP bath, ergo more susceptible. However, I seem to remember that study was using quite high concentrations as stand-alone treatments, and also longer immersion times. I follow a more holistic plan. The idea I follow is to assume secondary infection on wounds because only certain antibiotics work against certain pathogens. Hence the risk of non-columnaris pathogens is reduced in the same way that you would clean a wound on a human, as prior, good practice. I reality, the concentrations I use are safe enough, and worked.
Do you have some links on this
On the salt and the permanganate, I have my notes somewhere else. I was thinking of publishing the method on here, but didn't think people were ready to accept those ideas. There was always a member telling another to use shop bought treatments, and the risk that they could get it wrong. Plus it is not legal to use antibiotics without prescription, which left floating the three-course method kind of hopeless in my mind. So I am only able to hint at the truth. If I get a lot of interest on this then I'll get my notes probably later in the year. I'll just have a quick look back on my old posts Alto.... while we are online.
 

Simon Cole

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25 Dec 2018
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Buckingham
Ha ha - you are going to love this @alto . It is from a discussion we had ages ago. Here we go:
Improve his diet. You should be able to collect mosquito larvae at this time of year. Aphids and caterpillars too (no ants). California blackworms, whiteworms, gridal worms, bloodworms - one or two per day only, daphnia, fruit flies etc. What triggered it looks like bacteria and remotely-possibly shrimp damage (unlikely with RCS). All my quarantine tanks are 40 litres. Oxygenate the water to it's max. Salt was a smart idea. I do not touch EHSA because it is full of copper and sulphur, reminds me of toxic waste. When it gets bad, I prefer 2-3ppm potassium permanganate baths to take the gram positive bacteria off their epidermal tissue. Some people prefer antibiotics, and others prefer salt. I would start with diet, oxygen and tank size. Never, Never EHSA. But that is just my experience, many would disagree. Keep that fish moving about - get your hand up there and draw him over when he becomes static for too long.
This is the bit on salt. I used good sea salt as advised below.

Third stage was to use antibiotics (anything systemic according to the disease), but I need my notes for that one because I used human BMI and converted it to water volume in tank. An easy equation....
.... but of course we need to translate this method for parasitic worms.
 
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Simon Cole

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I seem to remember the PP in the study you mention was above 30ppm and long-term. I think, but may be wrong that you can even use it as mouth wash at the concentrations I use, yet it works down to 1 or 2 ppm. Of course, to sterilise the tank and equipment (fish absent) I go up to about 25ppm for 30 minutes.

The salt treatment just revives the fish and gets it buoyant and eating again.
Sometimes you need to be the hand of god and swim the fish around and feed it manually, but this too works (with the right systemic disease control of course).
 
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alto

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24 Dec 2014
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:lol:
I was thinking about GH/KH “hydration” rather than NaCl

btw now I’m convinced of my slow lapse into Memory Loss Syndrome :wideyed: :nailbiting: :nurse:
 

dw1305

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7 Apr 2008
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nr Bath
Hi all,
I've got a small 25L tank to use as a quarantine tank that i have used in the past as a hospital tank. I haven't quarantined fish before but because of the reasons for needing a hospital tank i think It's asfer for me to do so!

How long should the fish be in there before i add them into the main tank?
Should i treat these fish with any medications while they're in there?
Do i put anything in the tank or leave it bare?
I keep <"a separate planted tank">, it is the same as all the other tanks, it just doesn't have any permanent residents.

cheers Darrel
 

EA James

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22 Jul 2019
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Staines-upon-Thames
Hi all,

I keep <"a separate planted tank">, it is the same as all the other tanks, it just doesn't have any permanent residents.

cheers Darrel
This is interesting, I have quite a few plants in the main tank that i wanted to take cuttings from and try and grow them on (never tried this before) so this might be the ideal opportunity to give it a go.
I'm not to sure how the plants would get on though as the tank doesn't have a very good light and unlike my main tank it won't have co2 injection. My Mircosorum Pteropus Needle leaf has a ton of new growth which I'd like to make the most of as I've been told It's quite a rare plant?

Would the change to low tech shock the plants in some way or will they just grow slower?

Cheers
 

mrhoyo

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20 May 2020
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Halifax, UK
Rather than start another quarantine thread so soon I thought I'd jump in on this one.

Having lost 2 gourami in the last 6 months I'm somewhat nervous about adding 'replacement' fish in case anything gets passed on to my remaining residents.
With that in mind I'm going to set up a quarantine tank and have ordered some eSHa NDX (as suggested by @MirandaB above) and GDEX. Does anyone use the GDEX preventively in their quarantine process?


I'm especially unhappy about the male gourami dying - I'd planned a whole new tank because of that fish - so don't want to take any chances with the rest.
 
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