Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

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Macks
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Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Macks » Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:34 pm

Hi all. I’m new to this forum, and I’m currently preparing for getting my first DPs, trying to do my due diligence beforehand and was hoping to get some advice. Right now I’m cycling a Fluval Evo 13.5 that I’ve repurposed as a freshwater tank, and I have a little 3 gallon Picotope on my desk that I’m breeding snails and shrimp in for food.

I’ve read up as much as much info I can find about them, and as part of the starting process, I’m planting the tank and waiting for a nice little jungle to establish before adding any DPs. However, I’ve come across some issues that I’m not sure how to resolve. I was thinking I would want to quarantine them since their skin is sensitive to meds, and I want to avoid salt/heat method in my tank in the case of ich because I don’t want to destroy my plants (this comes from previous experience of having wrecked a bunch of plants this way before). Side note: I think I’m pretty solid on being able to look for symptoms of internal parasites, as I’ve been “practicing” on the DP tanks at the LFS around me :geek:

So, my question is, how can I quarantine them if they’re supposed to be pretty aggro without stuff breaking up their sightlines? Do I need to put enough stuff in a QT to keep them happy? The only extra tank I have is another 3 gallon, and it’s tall rather than long, so there isn’t a ton of room in there already, plus I don’t have any fake plants and if I can avoid buying them just for this, I’d like that (but will if necessary.) Is the 3 gallons big enough? I was thinking of getting 2-4 DPs, which is also something I’d like to get advice on, because there seems to be a lot of discrepancy as to how much space DPs need.

The other thing I was hoping to get feedback on is about setting up a quarantine tank itself. I’ve read that some folks cycle their QTs, while others just rely on WCs and Prime to get through their quarantines.

Finally, does anyone have experience with using meds on DPs? If I could avoid quarantining altogether then this stuff woukd be a non-issue.

I’d really appreciate any feedback or advice you might have. Thanks for reading!

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Pufferpunk » Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:54 pm

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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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Macks » Tue Oct 23, 2018 10:12 pm

Thank you! The detail in these sources will be helpful once I decide what to do. Hopefully someone can still give me some clarity on some of the specific concerns I have :mrgreen:

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Iliveinazoo » Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:30 pm

It seems like you could just about fit 1 male and 2 females in if you don’t have too much water displacing decor.
If there aren’t any other fish in the aqaurium then why do you have to quarantine? I’d place them all in the main tank once cycled and if any do need quarantine in the future then you can remove the sickly fish from the main tank then?

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Macks » Sat Oct 27, 2018 6:12 pm

Iliveinazoo wrote:
Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:30 pm
It seems like you could just about fit 1 male and 2 females in if you don’t have too much water displacing decor.
If there aren’t any other fish in the aqaurium then why do you have to quarantine? I’d place them all in the main tank once cycled and if any do need quarantine in the future then you can remove the sickly fish from the main tank then?
I’m not going to add any until I get the tank pretty filled up with plants. If I plant it thickly enough, do you think I could fit a 4th? Or is the number limit more about the bioload?

I was thinking of quarantining bc I’m worried if any have ich I’d have to treat the tank with salt, which I have done before in a planted tank and it ruined all of my plants =\ I’ve heard people saying you can treat with heat only but I still worry about how that would effect the plants and it’s not a guarantee for getting rid of any ich if there is any.

Thanks for the response, btw!

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by pufferjw » Sat Oct 27, 2018 11:21 pm

Iliveinazoo wrote:
Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:30 pm
It seems like you could just about fit 1 male and 2 females in if you don’t have too much water displacing decor.
If there aren’t any other fish in the aqaurium then why do you have to quarantine? I’d place them all in the main tank once cycled and if any do need quarantine in the future then you can remove the sickly fish from the main tank then?
Exactly. If they are the only fish in the tank then there is no need to quarantine unless one is sick.
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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Macks » Sun Oct 28, 2018 7:00 pm

pufferjw wrote:
Sat Oct 27, 2018 11:21 pm
Iliveinazoo wrote:
Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:30 pm
It seems like you could just about fit 1 male and 2 females in if you don’t have too much water displacing decor.
If there aren’t any other fish in the aqaurium then why do you have to quarantine? I’d place them all in the main tank once cycled and if any do need quarantine in the future then you can remove the sickly fish from the main tank then?
Exactly. If they are the only fish in the tank then there is no need to quarantine unless one is sick.
Yeah, again, I get that, but my main thing here is trying to protect my plants by not introducing ich into the tank so I don’t have to treat the tank itself if any are sick. And my question still stands either way, if I were to have to quarantine multiples either before or after, i’m worried about aggression in the QT without having stuff around to break up the space for them.

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by pufferjw » Mon Oct 29, 2018 2:55 pm

Got it, in that case I would say just quarantine each puffer in its own small tank, even like those 1.5 gallon betta tanks you can get for $30 each would work. You could also put like 6 or more in a large tank, and with that many they are less likely to need sight broken up.
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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Macks » Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:53 am

pufferjw wrote:
Mon Oct 29, 2018 2:55 pm
Got it, in that case I would say just quarantine each puffer in its own small tank, even like those 1.5 gallon betta tanks you can get for $30 each would work. You could also put like 6 or more in a large tank, and with that many they are less likely to need sight broken up.
Man, so it's looking like quarantining these guys beforehand would end up being another fair investment when you add in filters + heaters along with the extra tanks. I'd definitely say fair and have no argument, I just want the little guys to be happy and healthy in the end, if I wasn't your average and typically broke college student. Sigh. I might just have to risk the tank... but it seems like such a gamble with how much time and money I've put into the planting. Maybe I'll just try haunting the LFS I'm looking at with DPs and keep checking on them once a week for the next few weeks and see how their DPs are faring, and if the tank seems healthy after a while with no visible signs of sickness, I'll go for it.

Or perhaps I could rig a way to create 'walls' in the extra 3 gallon tank I have to keep them from fighting. I could go with your guys' initial suggestions of putting them in my display tank first, quarantining them after if they show any signs of illness, and then keeping the planted display empty long enough for ich or any other kind of pathogen to die off without a host to avoid having to use salt in it. I'm going to try to root around on the internet and see if I can find anything on med treatments that work with DPs so I can navigate around this altogether. So far I haven't had any luck, which seems surprising since the majority of folks seem to have their DP tanks planted.

Thanks for the input, I really do appreciate it. I'll just be happy once I actually get the lil buggers, because it's definitely proving to be a lot more planning and work than I had realized, and it'll be super gratifying to finally move them in once this is all figured out!

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Iliveinazoo » Tue Oct 30, 2018 11:13 am

A quarantine tank is always a good idea just to have around and you could place egg crate style dividers in to allow the water to circulate between each compartment and keep the fish separated.

Initially though if the entire tank does come down with something meaning that the whole tank needs to be treated and you were worried about your plants then you could just pull them up and keep them in a water filled glass jar on the windowsill temporarily, you could spray them with a mild bleach solution before placing them into the jar in the hope that you would kill off whatever virus or bacteria was in the tank.

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Re: Preparing for first DPs: quarantining multiple before planted display tank, aggression

Post by Macks » Wed Oct 31, 2018 3:50 am

The dividers are a great idea. I didn’t intend on running a QT tank at all times since my plan was just to keep this species only tank... I think if things really hit the fan that I could set it up and just keep it going from then. The tank is moderately planted, and with some pretty heavy root feeders, so pulling the plants out isn’t ideal, but I suppose one thing I’m really seeing here is that this hobby isn’t about easy solutions lol. I’ve been looking at peoples’ accounts of using Seachem Paragard with scaleless fish, and I think I might try going that route and treating the tank if I have an outbreak. I think I’ve fleshed out a good number of options and ideas, so I think once my nitrates/nitrates are at zero for a week i’m gonna pull the trigger and finally get them. I’ll come back and post pics. Thanks again for talking me through this, I really do appreciate your help!

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