Need help identifying and treating illness for pea puffer!

Oh no! Sick fish?! Come here and see if someone can help!
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Read this before posting!!

Since this board has been up, we have found there are several questions that routinely get asked in order to help diagnose problems. If you can have that information to begin with in your post, we'll be able to help right away (if we can!) without having to wait for you to post the info we need.

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.

3) Feeding, water change schedule and a list of all products you are using or have added to the tank (examples: Cycle, Amquel, salt, etc)

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.

5) How long the aquarium has been set up, and how did you cycle it? If you don't know what cycling is read this: Fishless Cycling Article and familiarize yourself with all the information. Yes. All of it.

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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Puffpuffgoose
Puffer Fry
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2022 4:51 pm
Location (country): New Zealand

Need help identifying and treating illness for pea puffer!

Post by Puffpuffgoose »

One of my pea puffers has a single white spot on its back, and is lying on the bottom of the tank (alternating between lying on his side and lying on his belly) looking like it's struggling to breathe. I've tried googling and I see the most common cause is ich but from what I've seen it doesn't resemble this? However I am new to the hobby so am a novice. It noticed it didn't come out of its "cave" last night to eat which was strange but only just noticed the spot this morning because it was lying outside of the cave where it was easier to see. My other puffer seems perfectly fine at the moment and still swims up to the glass to say hi to me.
IMG_20220801_085347_edit_60343569146000.jpg
1) Water parameters (just tested within the last hour) - pH, Ammonia 0, Nitrite 0, Nitrates 0-5 ppm (hard to tell exactly using liquid test kit). Temperature is consistently between 25-26 degrees celsius and has live plants.

2) Tank size 30L and only two pea puffers - no other inhabitants.

3) My pea puffers have only been eating bloodworms. I know this is not ideal but I have tried to feed them brine shrimp and another frozen food called "tropical tucker" and they just don't eat it. I try to only give them a few worms each from the frozen block but I find they gorge themselves so they are super full and I don't feed them every day because of this. I do approx. 50% water change every week. Treat the new water with seachem prime before adding to the tank. I also add flourish excel and flourish from time to time for the plants but this is not on a regular basis.

4) last water change was 1 week ago (7 days). This was also the first time I "cleaned" the filter and filter media (in the tank water). I was scared to do this earlier because I didn't want to kill all my beneficial bacteria. However tank seems to still be cycled so looks like I haven't disrupted this. I did go away for 2 nights (Friday and Saturday night) but my partner was here looking after the fish.

5) Set up the tank at the very end of May and did a fish less cycle by adding a piece of frozen fish into the tank and dosing with stability daily. Pea puffers were added 19 June once tank was fully cycled and water parameters have remained stable since.
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Puffpuffgoose
Puffer Fry
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2022 4:51 pm
Location (country): New Zealand

Re: Need help identifying and treating illness for pea puffer!

Post by Puffpuffgoose »

He ended up passing away after a couple of hours. Tried to do a salt water bath. It was so sad seeing him puff up 😢 this is what it ended up looking like in the end. Does anyone have any idea what could have caused this?
IMG_20220801_200925_edit_21061716582723.jpg
The other puffer still seems all good. However I will be going to the lfs to grab some medications just in case.
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Pufferpunk
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Re: Need help identifying and treating illness for pea puffer!

Post by Pufferpunk »

So sorry it took me so long to answer you! I appear to be the only expert on here anymore...
It also looks lumpy near the eye. My guess is nematodes. There is no medication for that. Hopefully your other won't have them.

https://www.pufferfishenthusiastsworldw ... vancoricus
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!"
Puffpuffgoose
Puffer Fry
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Jul 31, 2022 4:51 pm
Location (country): New Zealand

Re: Need help identifying and treating illness for pea puffer!

Post by Puffpuffgoose »

Thank you for your response Puffer punk. I hope it doesn't have them either... Maybe need to up my water changes to twice a week or get a better filter 😬
User avatar
Pufferpunk
Queen Admin
Posts: 32461
Joined: Tue May 31, 2005 11:06 am
Gender: Female
My Puffers: Filbert, the 12" T lineatus
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: Need help identifying and treating illness for pea puffer!

Post by Pufferpunk »

Nematodes are small worms that burrow under the skin in the wild. Some puffers come with them. Seems more common in F8s for some reason.
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!"
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