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Anna

MUST READ WHEN POSTING A DIAGNOSIS QUESTION

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This info is now mandatory, particularly parameters, tank setup, and stocking. We want to give the best advice we can, and we really can't work off of symptoms alone. Putting these in your original post will save time and give you the best chance of getting a quick and accurate diagnosis. If you don't provide them we'll just have to direct you back here anyway to get the rest and we might lose out on time that your fish doesn't have

General Info

Hello everyone, this is a list of some good info you should include in your post should you have a sick fish you want help with. Providing as many of these as possible will make it easier and more likely for you to get a good answer and be back to healthy happy fish as soon as you can. There are lots of factors that can go into making a fish ill and it's impossible to figure out what the issue is with just "my fish is sick!" The most important things are bolded but the more you can give us the better

Water parameters: these are best taken with a liquid drop test kit. Strips are usually very inaccurate. Please include exact numbers not just say "they're fine"

  • Ammonia
  • Nitrites
  • Nitrates
  • pH
  • Temperature
  • GH/KH (optional)

Tank setup:

  • Tank size
  • How many fish in the tank and what type
  • Type of filter
  • What you feed your fish
  • How much and how often you change water
  • Any new fish, plants, ornaments, or medications recently added to the tank

Fish:

  • Pictures of the sick fish if possible, especially for injuries/infections. See section below for tips on photo quality
    • If you cannot take or upload pics for whatever reason, we need a very very detailed description of the issue
  • If the fish are new, how long you've had them
  • Symptoms, the more detail the better
    • Physical signs to look out for can include torn fins, red streaks, unusual spots, raised or missing scales, swelling, fuzzy growths, visible parasites and wounds, etc
    • Behavioral signs to look out for can include floating or sitting on the bottom, odd swimming, clamped fins, gasping at the surface or rapid breathing, darting or rubbing on things in the tank, etc

 

 

Photo/video info - by myrasosweet 

  •  Image and video file upload sizes may be restricted to save server space so if you can't get it to post please upload it to a third party site (like Youtube, imgur, photobucket...) and paste a link to them in your post  

 

Okay so I've had so many problems trying to diagnose due to terrible quality photos and videos. If we are to assist you, we need CLEAR, well lit photos or video of the fish and their issues. If it is behavioral such as floating, erratic swimming, bottom sitting etc. we need a clear video.

Please get a small light such as the one I have pictured, using a 60-80 watt bulb, aim it DIRECTLY down into your tank and take a close up video with preferably an HD device. Move the camera smoothly left and right if needed. Please also try to vocally explain what is abnormal, it will help. 

For photos, which are more often needed than video... Here are some tips. The BEST WAY to get a clear photo of what you see on your fish is to hold him under a light where the issue is. If your fish aren't used to being handled, this is easily remedied by handling them gently every now and then and hand feeding them. Using a macro setting if available, take the photo under a bright light once the fish is calm. If the light is dimmer, use the flash. If the fish is moving, it will come out blurry so its important that the fish is calm. This is assuming you don't have a $1,000 camera!

IMG_20160728_121742.thumb.jpg.4719479b428e6c16d9759e66174ed170.jpg.27175556909f033bb27ac57913d3b991.jpg

Callisto in normal indoor light with flash:

DSCN1359_zpszwna06zy.thumb.jpg.60761c282bc91d93925ce0981b790521.jpg

If pulling your fish from the water for a few seconds bothers you, you can try to hold them partially under the water, but they are likely to thrash and try to swim away more. Also, the water can distort the image if the water is moving. Alternatively, if you don't have a good light source indoors or a flash, bowling your fish and taking him outside into the sunlight works, too.

Rhonda in bowl outside on concrete in natural light:

DSCN1360_zpsavjtck5t.thumb.jpg.b257c3abefdd562f1f72cd41aab4737f.jpg

If you are ABSOLUTELY uncomfortable with holding your fish, a bowl is better than trying to take a photo while still in the tank freely swimming. Scoop the fish into a clear glass bowl and try and take a photo of the spot you're trying to show. It will be harder but can be done:

DSCN1366_zpsaoladt5f.thumb.jpg.601e59851d77e402a64644acb23779a2.jpg

To check for Popeye and dropsy, photos need to be taken from above like this. If you aren't SURE your fish doesn't have these issues, I suggest submitting a photo so we can rule it out. These are serious diseases and can often only be noticed up close. I held my fish so you can see the position to angle the camera, but don't hold your fish, just take the photo from the top like this. White sacs around the eyes or prickly looking scales can mean popeye the precursor to dropsy, or dropsy.

DSCN1361_zps3aqmdunw.thumb.jpg.54c72ab35bcb6e4ac4806a7da7b537f2.jpg

If you need additional assistance with photograph taking, let me know and I will assist all I can.

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