So my two boys have been effected by velvet. as a result, I pried through the web looking for the safest and fastest treatment to cure them. along the way I learned so much about this parasite.
I know people post about velvet constantly here so here are some tips!!
some stuff about velvet:
- It does not 'appear' until the fish is weak or immune suppressed. In other words, your fish can be living with velvet for years
and fight it off on their own until they become old/weak. If your wandering why if you haven't added new plants/decor and your fish just magically have velvet.
- Its much smaller than ich so its very hard to tell. metallic/iridescent fish are especially hard to see, good places to check our the fish's head and pectoral fin. Use a flash light.
- 1 velvet bugs can turn into 200+ velvet bugs within 3 days. don't waste time.
- velvet can take up to 10 days to finish its life cycle, you must do a parasite treatment of 14 days
treatments that did not work for me:
- I tried 2 tsp per gallon of salt + darkness + heat, this method does not work and is a waste of time, plenty of new spots on both of my fish. the salt was super hard
on them, slade was swelling up from all the salt and very miserable. velvet can survive in salt if they find a host fast enough, you might end up stressing your fish to death before you defeat the disease. I don't recommend this at all.
- I also tried a broad anti-parasite, namely tetra parasite guard (some thing as jungle's parasite guard), it wasn't very effective. slade still had new spots appear.
- don't bother with trying to get your fish to fight it off on their own, this parasite will be a thorn in your fish's side for the rest of its life until it becomes old and the parasite takes over.
+ heat + darkness. velvet cannot tolerate copper so I went ahead and bought cupramine by seachem. I read a bunch of reviews and cupramine was the least harmful to fish and the gentlest treatment. its very expensive but this stuff actually do work. I read online that copper will attack the velvet while its freeing swimming and its inside the fish. I was skeptical but I think its true, after I used cupramine, both my fish begun to perk up and one my boys was actually flaring.
copper will kill all inverts like snails/shrimp and harm plants so you will need to quarantine your fish/other stuff. the final dose (you dose twice) of cupramine is 2 drops/gallon for freshwater, if you are doing a 100% wc just redose 2 drops/gallon.
feed your fish lots if they are willing to eat, they will need all the energy they can get. I been feeding 10 new life spectrum pellets instead of 6.
hope this helps anyone else fighting velvet!!