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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone!

In mid January I posted a thread in another section of the forum about my fish Felix. He had velvet which was caught too late and passed away despite 2 weeks of treatment and best efforts. It was a sad time and I was a sad panda. It was my first time handling a parasitic infection outside of ICH.

That was January 14th.

Since then my tank has been sitting fallow. I kept the water in the tank for a bit, as I read online that if the parasite doesn't have a host within a few days, it will die off. When I finally drained the water, I rinsed the rocks with hot water, cleaned my plants, filter, thermometer and tank with soap and water as hot as I could stand and set the tank back up and just let it air dry.

I am now expecting a new fish either today or tomorrow, and my friend suggested I boil the rocks. Which I did, he suggested 10 mins, but I let them boil for about 15-20, probably more as while it was cooking I scoured the internet for information that would put my mind at ease. I also rinsed the tank, and everything mentioned above again, and cut off the tubing to the filter that had been in the tank before so that should also be clean as well. (I probably rinsed everything a total of 4-5 times between the cleaning from when I first drained the water, to when I disassembled my tank a second time to boil the rocks.) I'm getting this betta from a breeder in Thailand and it's been much more costly than getting one from a pet store. I'd hate to have him also contract something that may have been left over.

Sadly in my search I didn't find much about how long they tend to live without water, in a dry and rather warm atmosphere (I almost always have my computer running and this room is small and heats up quickly, without a heater at this time of the year the tank usually sits at 77-81 F depending on my current activity even with a window open.) nor did I find much about whether or not they will survive longer than the few day no host period under certain circumstances. I know that Felix got velvet from freeze dried bloodworms, as that was the only thing that I had changed up from the norm. I've since thrown them out and I will never purchase them again.

My question is, am I relatively safe from my new fish contracting velvet after 3 and a half months fallow, and multiple rinses?
I considered doing a bleach rinse (after I had set it up from boiling my rocks earlier this morning) but didn't want to disassemble my tank for a third time, and feared it would be a bit OCD/overkill. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely will if I need to. But if the fish comes today he'll most likely have to chill in something else while I do so and I'd feel really bad because I'm sure his little world is being rocked in a not so good way from traveling all the way from Thailand to the US, just to be put in another small (but most likely larger than the bag he's arriving in) and not in his forever home when he gets here to de-stress and be happy again because his new mom doesn't know how to handle and vanquish oodinium properly.
 

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According to this article https://www.liveaquaria.com/article/84/?aid=84, and it goes into a lot of info on velvet, after a month it's safe to put fish back into the tank as the parasite should have died off. Here's a quote from the article.

If Amyloodinium does develop in a reef tank with invertebrates, it will be very difficult to rid the tank of the Amyloodinium as long as fish are present. Removing the fish to a separate tank and allowing the tank to run fish-free for a month is probably necessary. This will allow the organism to run through its life cycle and die out due to the lack of a host.
If you used soap to clean the tank I'd rinse the heck out of it, then when you think you've more then rinsed it enough, rinse it some more. Even a tiny bit of soap can be toxic for a fish.
 

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I seldom, if ever, medicate my tanks - especially with bleach. Unless the disease was persistent, I'd usually let it sit fishless for 1-many weeks. Otherwise, I would dry tank and let it sit under direct sunlight (around midday) for a few days to a week.

Before reusing the tank, I usually change about 50% - 80% of water (or amount needed to siphon out gunk).

You've cleaned tank and boiled accessories and left them dry for a month. They should be safe for new fish.
 

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The velvet parasite runs it's life cycle from a few days to a few weeks. The longest I've heard bacteria / parasites can live without a host is columnaris which is 35 days. If you tank has not had a host for 3 months, I'd say you're safe. Just clean things up as normal and put him in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thank you for the responses. He's in the tank as of now and will hopefully start to de-stress a bit. After the first article that was shared I did a bit more research and got creative with the words I searched and learned quite a bit more. With a second opinion from a friend, I am pretty confident he is safe. As stated the tank has not had a host since the morning of the 14th of January. everything has literally been washed probably around 15-20 times since then in two different cleaning times. I make sure everything squeaks, and when it passes the squeak test, I usually rinse it about 3-5 more times to be on the safe side. The good news is, I am much more informed about Velvet now than I was before, so I know a lot of what to look for and will hopefully have a different outcome if it happens again.

I did have to put him in one of my smaller, temp tanks for most of the day as I wanted to make sure his actual home was as perfect as it could be. He's spending an equal amount of time still and swimming about I'm noticing. Mainly hanging out on the top side of the tank with a dive every so often. He's eaten about 5 pellets of food, so he's eating and that's a good sign. His fins are usually flapping around and don't stay clamped long, his gills looks healthy and he seems to be breathing normally.

Gonna be watching him like a hawk for the next week or two. I can't wait until he knows he's not in danger and gets all comfy. Before Felix passed I had started to teach him some tricks, so hopefully I can also train this one. Just gotta settle on a name for him, though the more I watch him the clearer the choice is becoming haha. I'll introduce him to the forum when he starts to settle in. :) Thank you again guys!
 
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