GSP with possible gill parasite

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1) Your water parameters - pH, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrates and salinity (if appropriate). This is by far the most important information you can provide! Do not answer this with "Fine" "Perfect" "ok", that tells us nothing. We need hard numbers.

2) Tank size and a list of ALL inhabitants. Include algae eaters, plecos, everything. We need to know what you have and how big the tank is.

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4) What changes you've made in the tank in the last week or so. Sometimes its the little things that make all the difference.

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We want to help, and providing this information will go a LONG way to getting a diagnosis and hopeful cure that much faster.

While you wait for assistance:
One of the easiest and best ways to help your fish feel better is clean water! If you are already on a regular water change schedule (50% weekly is recommended) a good step to making your fish more comfortable while waiting for diagnosis/suggestions is to do a large water change immediately. Feel free to repeat daily or as often as you can, clean water is always a good thing! Use of Amquel or Prime as a dechlor may help with any ammonia or nitrite issues, and is highly recommended.

Note - if you do not normally do large water changes, doing a sudden, large water change could shock your fish by suddenly changing their established water chemistry. Clean water is still your first goal, so in this case, do several smaller (10%) water changes over the next day or two before starting any large ones.
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The Real Puff Shady
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GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Looking for recommendations regarding a new juvenile GSP.

Parameters:
Ammonia: 0
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: Between 5 and 10
PH: 7.5 or so. (Reads the highest color on API Low PH vial ( 7.6) and the lowest color on the HIGH vial which is 7.4.)

While I wait for my new 55 gal to cycle, he is in a fully cycled FW 20 gallon. I have salt water to begin the slow transition to full marine, but haven't started that yet.

The only tank mates are about 20 ghost shrimp I got just to eat crud out from the bottom and possibly become puffer food. Assuming they live, I'll be removing them to another of my tanks as I increase the salinity. The GSP picked at one the first day and has since let them be.

The issue:

Got a tiny, maybe 3/4 inch GSP yesterday (December 1st), bright white belly, voracious for blood worms, inquisitive and active most of the time.

But I've noticed his right gill seems inflamed or something. From behind, he looks a little lopsided as the left gill is almost imperceptible while the right is clearly held away from the body.

He will buzz about for awhile, then find a place to lay down. His breathing looks a little heavy, but I cannot visibly see any parasite on his body or gills. I did observe him "flashing" against an almond leaf I have in there. I'm trying not to stress him by disturbing him every time he lays down as I know this is normal for full/sleepy puffs. Each time I look in the tank, he is in a different place, so I know he is moving, and he does look at me, so not listless or anything.

I know these guys often have parasites from the wild. I've done one dose of Melafix today, and I did a dose yesterday and today of Freshwater Fishkeeper, recommended at my LFS to reduce stress from moving.

Any thoughts or recommendations are appreciated. Thanks everyone.
The Real Puff Shady
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Update for whoever responds first:

It may not be that his gill is inflamed, but rather that the OTHER gill is clamped shut. I just checked on him again, he's swimming around, but now the gills are reversed: left gill open, right almost imperceptible, and he wasn't really using the right pectoral fin while swimming.

So it seems he is switching back and forth between which gill is "open" and "closed."

Standing by for info, thanks.
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by Pufferpunk »

For a gill parasite, I would treat the tank with Prazipro.
You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

"The solution to pollution is dilution!"
The Real Puff Shady
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Pufferpunk wrote: Thu Dec 02, 2021 9:47 pm For a gill parasite, I would treat the tank with Prazipro.
Ok. I have API general cure (Metronidazole and Praziquantel) as well as levamisole hydrochloride, based on some reading I did here on the Forum. Would those work, or should I find Prazipro?

Thanks for your reply. So far his behavior and appearance haven't changed since the original post. I'm really hoping he pulls through.
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Mongo, the 4" A modestus
2 T biocellatus
C valentini
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Also kept:
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by Pufferpunk »

I would use the levamisole.
You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

"The solution to pollution is dilution!"
The Real Puff Shady
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Thanks very much. Treatment is started. I'll be doing regular water changes as well.

He perked up today, but didn't put much effort into eating. I'll update tomorrow.
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Pufferpunk wrote: Fri Dec 03, 2021 1:31 pm I would use the levamisole.
Update: Cautiously optimistic.

He is more active today. Did a 50% water change, began the transition to salt water (up to 1.001 now) and added the next round of medicine.

2 other odd developments:

1.He had been alternating between sitting on the bottom and keeping his nose at the top. Today I actually saw him "eat" some bubbles from my airstone, after which he could not dive. I had to gently squeeze him to get the bubbles out of his gills. This happened twice.

2. After the gentle squeeze and water change, I saw him forcefully poop, and out came a tiny white worm, wiggling in the water. I quickly netted it out.

I don't know if it was the squeezing or the meds, but now he is swimming about much more actively, though that still includes a lot of time with his nose at the surface. I have the filter outflow creating surface movement, but I turned off the air stone because I'm worried he'll get bubbles stuck in his gills again while I'm sleeping.

Still open to any suggestions or thoughts about ongoing treatment. Thanks.
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite UPDATE #2

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Sorry I keep posting so much, I'm just worried about this little guy.

Morning after the big water change, I find him floating about helplessly in the currents. Tried burping him several times, no success. His tail end floats up against his will and he tries hard to right himself, but he just rolls around.

Parameters this morning were:
Ammonia 0
Nitrites 0.25 (Weird)
Nitrates 20
Salinity 1.000 (also weird, my refractometer works properly, tested my 55 that I've been getting ready and it reads 1.030 after adding salt yesterday. I'll reduce that.)

Did a water change, about 30%, nitrites are 0 now, nitrates between 5 and 10.

He expelled two more worms during the water change. Tiny, white threadlike things that wiggle with a wave pattern in the water.

I'm thinking of trying an Epsom salt dip to get him to expell them, because his condition seems to be declining faster than the medicine is helping him.

I'll keep an eye out for replies, and post whether he is still with us tomorrow.
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite - Passed away

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

He died. I guess the worms were too far along. I watched him wiggle his last wiggle, then nothing. This is my 3rd try with a GSP, my first armed with accurate knowledge of them and I spent so much time and money on trying to save him, now I'm just sad, and I know my wife will be devastated when she wakes up. I don't know if we'll try again or not.

If we do, is it worth trying a dewormer when I first bring him home and his appetite is good?
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Punkster, the 4" red T miurus
Mongo, the 4" A modestus
2 T biocellatus
C valentini
C coranata
C papuan
Also kept:
lorteti
DPs
suvattii
burrfish
T niphobles
Location (country): USA, Greenville, SC
Location: Chicago
Contact:

Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by Pufferpunk »

I'm so sorry! I'm the only one here answering questions anymore and I've been at a dog trial all weekend.
You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

"The solution to pollution is dilution!"
The Real Puff Shady
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Re: GSP with possible gill parasite

Post by The Real Puff Shady »

Pufferpunk wrote: Mon Dec 06, 2021 9:19 am I'm so sorry! I'm the only one here answering questions anymore and I've been at a dog trial all weekend.
That's ok, certainly not your fault. It can't be helped how rapidly young GSPs seem to decline when something like this happens. I appreciate your replies just the same.
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