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Old 08-20-2011, 04:51 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Marin County, CA
Columnaris? Opague white patches on body

What size is your tank? 6.6 gallons
What temperature is your tank? now 78, was 80
Does your tank have a filter? yes & it is cycled
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? none

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? NLS Thera A, NLS Betta Bites, FRozen Bloodworms
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2x daily

How often do you perform a water change? every 3-5 days, remove poop every day by turkey baster
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 30-50% depending upon readings
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? prime & attison's betta spa - an indian almond extract

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

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: <5ppm
pH: 7.6
Hardness: kh - 4 drops, gh - 5 drops

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Opaque white patches are appearing on the body only, they are almost invisible like the skin under the dragon scales is just white instead of red but still shiny and flat but then when viewed at a certain angle you can see they are not as shiny and opaque.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? It hasn't, he still eats like a pig, is very very active (thus the bad pics) and interactive.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? 2.5 weeks ago.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I thought it was Costias and treated with salt, copper sulfate and turning up the heat to 88F. The patches did not go away and I began to think they were his coloring changing, until I saw the columnaris post. So far I have put copper sulfate in (it's the only thing I have that might address columnaris right now) and lowered the temp to 78
Does your fish have any history of being ill? He has a history of tailbiting and currently is in a state where it is growing back with clear areas filling in. He also had a bad case of skin flukes when I recieved him, that ended in lesions on his body. At first I thought the color change was healing lesions. He also may have had some ammonia burns from transit from Thailand
How old is your fish (approximately)? around 6-7 months

I thought I would add, that although his ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels have always been ideal, I have made some grave errors with ph while I have had him. I have gone back and forth between trying to acclimate him to my tap - a very high ph of 8.0, and now working back down to a 1/2 RO, 1/2 tap formula of about 7.2-7.4 because his tailbiting seems to lessen at a lower ph.

Tailbiting usually occurs during these adjustment times, although I try to make sure to not raise or lower it too quickly, the slow off gassing of the tap has fooled me a couple of times into thinking I was adjusting it slower than I actually was (aiming for a gradual .1 to .2 adjustment, when it would be at times a .4 adjustment in a 24 hour period ) . I am concerned that this stress brought on disease.

I understand that if it is columnaris I need to act fast and break down the whole tank. But before giving up on my cycled planted tank and a stable life for him, i want to be sure of the disease. I am also very concerned about cross contamination to other tanks.

I apologise for the pics. He is the most active betta I have ever had.

Thanks for looking and I appreciate any response.
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Old 08-20-2011, 06:31 PM   #2 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
That really doesn't look like columnaris to looks more like wounds left by external parasites or missing scale or pigment change due to a healing wound or something, however, an opening in the tissue can open the fish up to a secondary infection.....Did you QT the fish to treat or did you add the medications to the display tank.....

How many total days has the fish been kept in medications and has he had a rest between the medication...

Breaking down the tank due to columnaris will not help since it is always in the tank......prevention is the best method by supporting a strong immune response with a-stable balanced system, quality water and good nutrition......
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:31 AM   #3 
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OMG thank you thank you OFL!! So glad you replied!

In all scenarios of the skin flukes which I used General Cure by API directly into the tank. Also with the aquarisol or coppersulfate I did that as well. Both time I removed the carbon filter which is also attached to the filter floss and replaced it when done.

Today I came back from a birthday party to find that he is missing a scale and his red body is showing. There is absolutely nothing sharp in there, the sharpest thing is the smooth plastic filter box corners. I think I better look into the external parasites.

I am beginning to think it's a return of the skin & gill flukes because he did not show any symptoms last time but strange breathing. When I put in General CUre he literally leaped out of the water and starting biting at himself and small white things came out ripping holes in his scales as they did.

Anysuggestions on how to treat the parasites or which ones they are? He did not flash last time he had them, and does not appear to be flashing but he is darting about a lot (but always has really)

Thanks again OFL!
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Old 08-21-2011, 01:40 AM   #4 
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Sorry for the double post... you are absolutely right OFL it is a return of the skin flukes which is apparently difficult to erradicate entirely from an aquarium or a fish for that matter. Certainly not as dire as columnaris.

Any suggestions on the best treatment? And I treat in the tank yes? Since the tank is affected?
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Old 08-21-2011, 11:43 AM   #5 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
I would QT for treatment regardless of what you use....research the parasite and learn its life have to rid the tank of the eggs to prevent re-infection...I can't recall off hand-how long it takes.....I don't use OTC products to might want to contact Darkmoon for medications....good luck and sorry I couldn't be of more help.....
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