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Old 01-30-2013, 11:44 AM   #1 
aemaki09
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Columnaris in my sorority again!

So I THINK I have columnaris in my sorority/community tank again.
Someone please help!
I've lost 2 Pygmy cories in the past week 1 boy and 4 of my sorority girls are showing signs of having it. --white fuzzy patches and flesh/fins being eaten away.
The male has a patch on his mouth. One girl has half her tail missing (posted about her yesterday). Another has it on her ventrals, and the last has a patch on her face. I'm afraid it's spread to everyone so I am going to treat the entire tank


Housing
What size is your tank? 26 gallons
What temperature is your tank? 80*
Does your tank have a filter? Yes, aquaclear 50, and heavily planted
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Is your tank heated? Yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? 7 girls, 6 cories, and 4 tiger Endlers.

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? NLS, the Endlers get omega one tropical, cories get API bottom feeder pellets
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2x/day

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Every 5-6 days
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 30+%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Tetra Aqua safe water conditioner

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia:0
Nitrite:0
Nitrate:15
pH: 7.6-7.8
Hardness: haven't tested lately
Alkalinity: haven't tested lately

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? White fuzzy patches on some
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Before I put the Pygmy cories down they couldn't swim and were breathing hard, everyone else is acting normal
When did you start noticing the symptoms? I gues it has been a week now, didn't realize it till today when I saw a white patch on one of my girls faces
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? Epsom salt in the main tank 20 tsp for 26 gallons. In the QT with one girl there's AQ salt because I thought it was only fin rot.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? I had a columnaris outbreak in the same tank about a month ago but it cleared up
How old is your fish (approximately)? Everyone is a different age.


Please help. All of these girls were bought to be breeders, I can't afford to lose them. I will try anything suggested!
I am not able to get a hold of kanaplex for a while. Medications easily available to me are furan to and maracyn plus. I have Epsom salts. Planning to pull the temp down to 74 as I have read that columnaris likes warm water and can't survive easily in anything 74 and below, is this a bad idea???
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:22 PM   #2 
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Wish that I could be more help. Your doing exactly what I would at this point. Aww not the corys too. Good luck and I hope a better keeper than me weighs in with some good advise.
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Old 01-30-2013, 12:27 PM   #3 
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Thanks logistics!

I am terrified that somehow it'll spread to my spawn tank.
I added my blue koi girl back into the sorority tank the other day so I wont be able to re-try the spawn if it spreads to her too.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:24 PM   #4 
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Found an article that has some useful info: http://nippyfish.net/sick-betta/cott...-disease-flex/ Selected quotes are below:

"Flexibacter columnaris is caused by a gram-negative rod bacterium....

... often brought on by poor water conditions including the presence of ammonia, nitrite or elevated nitrate levels....

... decreased dissolved oxygen levels may contribute to the growth of flex. Adding an air stone may help to reduce the risk of these bacteria....

To treat the disease, purchase an aquarium antibiotic that treats gram-negative bacterial infections. I recommend Mardel’s Maracyn-Two. For serious instances, a combination of both Maracyn and Maracyn-Two may be best to cover any secondary infections. The two medications together will treat both gram-positive and gram-negative bacterium. The antibiotic, oxytetracycline, has been regarded as a very effective cure and may be a key ingredient in some medicated fish foods....

Because the bacteria flourishes in warmer water you may find it beneficial to slowly lower your water temperature over the subsequent couple days. Aim for a temperature on the low spectrum of bettas’ comfort zone. Approximately 75˚F – 77˚F [23.8˚C – 25˚C] is recommended..."
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:27 PM   #5 
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Another article: http://www.fishyfarmacy.com/articles/columnaris.html:

"Flexibacter Columnaris can persist in water for up to 32 days when the hardness is 50ppm or more, but a hardness of 10ppm reduces viability considerably. The addition of carbon to the system increases the survival of this disease in hard water, but this is not the case in soft water.

Columnaris is prevelant in systems with high organic loads, crowded conditions, handling and low dissolved oxygen content. Lesions generally develop in 24 to 48 hours following handling, followed by death at 48 to 72 hours if not treated.

Treatment and Control:
Any Sulfa drug combination will work well. TMP Sulfa, Sulfa 4 TMP, or Triple Sulfa."
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:51 PM   #6 
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Basically, perfect conditions for bettas makes it thrive. LOVELY! (sarcasm)

Thanks for looking that up for me Littleblue!!!

If I didnt say this already::
I think it came in on that black dragon HMPK girl that I recently got, but symptoms didnt show up until after she was already in the community tank. The tank is a little over stocked IMO, but the rest of the water conditions were ideal.

My plan::
I think I'm going to try maracyn plus first since I've been hearing its the 2nd best on the market other than kanaplex. And keep up with the epsom treatment. Put my sponge filter down at the bottom and my filter on high to help with aeration, and keep turning the temperature down slowly.

If anyone has any other suggestions, please let me know!
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:10 PM   #7 
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Well this is simplistic but...add another sponge filter to your tank. It increases the oxygen plus harbors tons of bb. No carbon in the sponge filter system too. as well as the meds now. Its helped me in the past just from my experience. Im no scientist, rocket or otherwise.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:29 PM   #8 
LittleBlueFishlets
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aemaki09 View Post
Basically, perfect conditions for bettas makes it thrive. LOVELY! (sarcasm)
Yes, one of the articles said the exact same thing! (Without the sarcasm though. )

Maracyn Plus contains Sulfadimidine and Trimethoprim. So it sounds appropriate (sulfa drug, gram negative, etc)........

"Sulphadimidine is highly effective against streptococcus, staphylococcus and gram-negative pathogens..."
http://www.vetzavodzemun.com/producthem_e.php?id=46

" Trimethoprim is a synthetic antibacterial drug active against a wide variety of aerobic gram-positive and gram-negative ophthalmic pathogens."
http://www.drugs.com/pro/polymyxin-b...-solution.html

Last edited by LittleBlueFishlets; 01-30-2013 at 10:40 PM.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:39 PM   #9 
aemaki09
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Thanks again littleblue! I'm glad you are helping me research my plans!!


Logistics -- I only have 1 sponge filter available at the moment. its normally in my 10 gallon, but I took it out for the spawn, so now its in my sorority opposite of the aquaclear 50. Its a weird sponge filter, has a plastic casing and a vent on top to let the air/bubbles out. I normally have the vent right at/a little above water level, now its sitting at the bottom of the tank. Best I can do for the time being. Sponge filters arent easily available here. I bought the last one that the only store that carries them had/will ever have. Nobody seems to like them (other than me!!!)
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Old 01-31-2013, 03:41 PM   #10 
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I understand. I had to drive everywhere to find a high quality sponge filter. I know the style you have there and I had one too. Did not like that style as we had issues with it and it did a poor job compared to the ones currently using. The keeping the disease away from the fry is a concern. All I can say is be vigilant with cross contamination. I spray with Lysol liberally onto anything near or going between tanks. Good luck with this you can beat it!
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