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Fish fungus

Fish Fungus

It is not uncommon for the fishes in fresh water or home aquaria to have fungal afflictions that affect their health.

Most of these ailments can be diagnosed easily and treated successfully if detected in time. Fish fungus is generally followed by other health related infections which are parasitic or bacterial in origin. It is vital that you know the appropriate fish fungus treatment.

If left untreated, the fungus may grow and eventually eat away the tissues of the fish, resulting in its death. Saprolegnia is the most commonly known fish body fungus to affect fish. The attack may prove to be fatal if not treated in the initial stages.

Apart from saprolegnia, fishes are prone to ichthyosporidium and columnaris attacks. In the former, the fungus initially attacks the liver and kidneys and eventually spreads throughout the fish. It is important that you destroy the affected fish in order to prevent the disease from spreading. Columnaris is caused by bacteria and hence an antibacterial or antibiotic medication is used to cure the fish. Fungus on fish initially establishes as small infections in a specific area and thereafter spreads rapidly over the body, fins, and gills of the fish. Fish fungus can form on your fish's body at any time in its life.

Fish Fungus Causes

  • Stress
  • Injury
  • Poor water conditions
  • Chilly waters

Fish Fungus Symptoms

  • Tufts of dirty and cotton-like growth on the skin.
  • Fish eggs turn white.
  • Whitish growth on fins.
  • Loss of balance.
Fish Fungus Treatment
  • You must use a solution of phenoxethol at 1% in distilled water. Add 10 ml of the prepared solution per liter of aquarium water.
  • You may remove the fish from the aquarium and swab it with a cloth treated with povidone iodine or mercurochrome.  
  • To prevent the fungal attacks on fish eggs, you must use a solution of methylene blue after the eggs are laid.
  • You must frequently change water to ensure that they have fresh water, as poor water conditions enable diseases to break out fast
  • You must provide added aeration for your fish while treating with medication to provide them with more oxygen.
  • You may also add one teaspoon per gallon of aquarium salt to aid in fish fungus healing as well as provide added protection.
  • It is vital that you maintain an optimum temperature for preventing fungal attacks on your fish. The right temperature will not only make your fish feel comfortable but at the same time will help in boosting their immune system against fish fungus.
Fish Fungus Prevention
  • You must avoid injuries to your fish by minimizing handling and not mixing specimens that might damage one another.
  • You must monitor the water quality and change the water at least once every week.
  • You must maintain cleanliness by removing organic matter, uneaten food, and dead animals.
  Submitted on May 31, 2010