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Old 08-04-2012, 06:41 PM   #1 
Aus
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The benefits of Ketapang/IAL

I am sure there's many threads on this subject already, but I wanted to ask this question:

Could the use of ketapang (Indian Almond) leaves be an effective preventative for many of the diseases that seem to regularly plague bettas?

It was a question I asked myself, having observed an abrasion on the lip of one of my new betta strohi heal almost completely over night once IAL was introduced to the tank. Before that, I was seeing softening white tissue that had me reaching slowly for the antibiotics (I am a great fan of quick, effective treatments for diseases that might kill my fish...).

But I'm cautious, too, about unnecessary medication - so decided to wait for morning and if the lip got worse, into the meds she'd go.

This was the day my ketapang arrived, so that went into the tank.

Not only did my mature pair spawn (after a few days of almost-spawning) but the little girl with the sore lip looked vastly improved, to where I did not reach for the handy dandy Myxazin but chose the option: 'see what happens'. One day later and the sore is almost entirely healed. I was terrified of a cottonmouth infection, or the sore going septic (yes a bit paranoid, but it did look 'not right').

Which is the long-winded way of saying that I saw for myself the healing properties of IAL/ketapang and thought to research it further. I found several excellent papers regarding research into this, and it seems there are pharmaceutical benefits to IAL, for sure.

And it's not only used for fish, it's a people-medicine, too.


Oh, and I read that the trees originated in Australia and spread to Asia from here.

AussieAussieAussie


So, back to my question...

If thousands of fishkeepers over hundreds of years have sworn by this stuff to keep thier fish and fry healthy and disease-free...

Why not use ketapang as a disease preventative? Like, let's promote the heck out of that as a way to prevent the seemingly endless fin rot/sbd/popeye threads.

Could IAL be an essential factor in reducing disease (where water quality etc is not an obvious cause)..

It's easily purchased online. It works. That's all the encouragement I need.
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Old 08-04-2012, 06:43 PM   #2 
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Hm I swear by the stuff myself but I guess the proof is in the pudding, as they say. Hobbyists swear by it and it works wonders as a holistic treatment so yes, I agree it works as a proactive treatment. I keep it in my tanks all the time, I mean, it's so cheap and easy to come by why NOT use it all the time?!?
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Old 08-04-2012, 06:53 PM   #3 
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Exactly, Laki.. especially as the research clearly supports the anecdotal evidence (not that I doubted those venerable Thai fishkeepers). But it's wonderful to see their claims 'validated' if it'll help convince people to use this stuff as a preventative.

It more than the 'tannins' provided by rooibos tea or mopani, which might offer psychological comfort to the fish by darkening the water.. the IAL/ketapang itself is antimicrobial.

And since the majority of fin rot/popeye/dropsy/etc is caused by bacteria, it only makes sense to me to use an antimicrobial additive said to combat those bacteria.

of course, clean water is #1 -- but clean water + ketapang seems like a brilliant recipe for healthy fish.


I should add - after the research I've done into both columnaris and aeromonus, the two major 'culprits' in fish diseases posted here, I do not mess about when it comes to fin rot/popeye/fungus/etc - any symptom of these two bacteria gets smacked with gram-negative antibiotic because they are fish killers and actually not that easy to cure past the very early stages.

If ketapang nips these two in the bud, it could mean a massive reduction in the number of sick fish out there.

Last edited by Aus; 08-04-2012 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 08-04-2012, 06:57 PM   #4 
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Yes! Absolutely. I wish I had more space to take in more betta and treat them with IAL. I thus far have only my sister and mother using it! lol
It's antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-microbial and everything else which keeps fish healthy. It helped cure my Ludendorff when I brought him home in January, who had bad fin melt and lethargy. I would never have betta's in non IAL treated water
^-^
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