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I have a 5 gallon divided tank with a male betta on one side and female betta on the other. My male betta has one white bumb on his "forehead" area. This is Ich right? He is active, hungry, and normal otherwise. No other spots, or spots on the female yet.

After reading on this forum, I decided to treat with the heat and salt method. I normally keep the tank at 78*, so I began to raise the temperature slowly (1-2* every hour). When the temp got to 84*, both my bettas hid and stopped swimming around (which they never do). I turned the temp down, abandoning this method. They seemed to not tolerate the temperature increase at all.

Other than speeding up the protozoan's life cycle, what purpose does the heating serve? Can I still add salt to kill the protozoan (slower), or is heat necessary? Should I try to use a malachite green/formalin product instead of salt and heat?

I really want to nip this in the bud before it gets bad!!!

Thank you for all the help!
 

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The heat is to speed up their life cycle so that you can get them off the fish. The high salt content is what helps to kill them in their swimming phase of life. Last time I had ick I gave up on the heat and salt method, because it was taking to long for my taste, and after two weeks of 50% daily water changes, of a 55 gallon tank, I just wanted it gone. So I changed to the chemicals, gave a full dose to scale less fish, then let it rest a day and re-added the filter. Did half doses the next two days, re-added the filters again. And about a week later finally stopped changing 30 gallons of water daily. But I learned my lesson on quarantining fish before adding them to your tank.
 

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The heating also kills the adolescent ich hiding in the gravel.

However if your boys cant handle the extra temperature you may need to try other methods. A good general cure is a great choice and the malachite green you suggested should do just as well.
 

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I have a 5 gallon divided tank with a male betta on one side and female betta on the other. My male betta has one white bumb on his "forehead" area. This is Ich right? He is active, hungry, and normal otherwise. No other spots, or spots on the female yet.

After reading on this forum, I decided to treat with the heat and salt method. I normally keep the tank at 78*, so I began to raise the temperature slowly (1-2* every hour). When the temp got to 84*, both my bettas hid and stopped swimming around (which they never do). I turned the temp down, abandoning this method. They seemed to not tolerate the temperature increase at all.

Other than speeding up the protozoan's life cycle, what purpose does the heating serve? Can I still add salt to kill the protozoan (slower), or is heat necessary? Should I try to use a malachite green/formalin product instead of salt and heat?

I really want to nip this in the bud before it gets bad!!!

Thank you for all the help!

The heat treatment needs to be at least 86 degrees. I've administered it to every new fish (at 88, while in quarantine) for several years and have never lost a fish to the treatment. Easily a couple hundred fish.

I also don't use salt at all - it's totally unnecessary when using heat. I know a lot of people say you have to use both but the treatment is no less effective without the use of salt, so that's clearly not the case.

The heat does more than just speed up the life cycle. It prevents the parasite from completing the life cycle causing it to die off.

If you don't want to use heat then my suggestion is quick cure. I had great success with it, back before I knew of the heat. It worked fine, but stained the silicon and decor in the tank.

NOW. Before you do anything else, post a picture so it can be positively IDed. I've seen too many people treating their fish for ich when their fish was not showing ich spots. There are white spots that are not ich.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Unfortunately, I was not able to get a great picture. Can you see enough from this image?

As far as quarantine goes, this is not a new fish. I've had him and the female for a year. I haven't introduced any new plants, fish, or other biotic materials, so I'm not sure where the Ick could have come from?

He is still happy and eating today. I bought some quick-cure, but haven't treated yet. Waiting on a sure diagnosis.

Thanks again!
 

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Ich will spread on the fish. You have a pretty large window from when it first shows up to when the fishs life is in danger, so not to worry there. The pic was unclear, so I can't say whether it's ich or not. Ich spreads and usually is seen on the fins and sides of the fish, so if it's no where else on the fish then I would question whether it's ich.

You should try to get a better picture, if you can.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
This is the best I can do with the camera I have. I circled the spot in orange. [Just FYI, the white spot that looks like it is on the base of his anal fin is actually a spot on the tank.] The spot circled is the only one on his body.
 

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Yeah that's not ich. I don't exactly know what to tell you other than that. Definitely not parasitic in nature so hold off on the quick cure and heat.

I would start a new thread with a new title that will attract more attention. Ich is pretty common and the same advice is handed out every time so I think a lot of people see that you are getting help and probably don't bother looking.
 

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You're very welcome, that's what we are here for.

Quite honestly though, it would be better news if it was ich because it is very easy to treat. The spot might not be a big deal, or it might turn out to be a very big deal. Unfortunately sometimes we have to wait and see how things develop to know.
 
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