Gel like lump on corydoras fin

Discussion in 'Fish' started by Hufsa, 12 Jan 2020.

  1. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    Discovered one of my lassies with a white gel like substance on one of her fins.
    Shes had a lighter patch on her nose for a couple of days but I thought she had just gotten scratched up on a bit of driftwood or something.
    Im very concerned. It doesnt look fuzzy like fungus.
    It looks worse in real life than on pictures.
    Fish is in overall good shape so far, eating and swimming as normal.
    I had what I think was an outbreak of Columnaris during last summer, could it be that again? I lost a lot of fish last time :(
    I want to start treatment right away, but need to find the most likely disease first
     

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    Last edited: 12 Jan 2020
  2. alto

    alto Member

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    Are you able to feed levamisol medicated food?
    This is effective against most fish internal parasites (including helminths) and also seems support the immune system, it’s also relatively palatable and seems well tolerated by most fish (if nothing else it will minimize secondary infections which is very important in fish care)
    Most medicated baths are inefficient and poorly tolerated by many fish, so I don’t suggest these unless you have a very good idea of the primary infective agent

    Columnaris is very difficult to treat even in a facility with onsite veterinary care - it’s more about improving survival rates/reducing mortality than being able to use a single medication which targets and eliminates the Columnaris variant Identifying the particular strain is part of the process, some are extremely fast acting (with over 90% mortality rate regardless of medical protocols) while others are much slower, acting over weeks, and allowing fish time to develop an immune response - which combined with supportive care and suitable medications may result in reduced mortality rates
    (but then the treatment/recovery extends over months)

    Columnaris is much easier to treat in a bare tank system (but then this may stress your individual fish which depresses fish immune system ...) with daily water changes and wiping down glass surfaces

    Aquarium and livestock details, care and maintenance details???

    While the photos are decent and the fish looks well, it’s not clear what the most likely issue may be - posting on various forums may increase the chance that someone will recognize that specific symptom “white gel like substance on fin”

    Are you able to gently catch this fish, and very gently scrape/move the gel substance - if there’s any stress in this process I’d not return fish to a community tank, but place in a hospital tank (where I prefer to treat anyway)) - if it slips off easily, I’d not worry much, of it’s part of the parasite process then you need to consider (definitely do not return fish to the community)

    It is possible that both symptoms are just from some physical trauma, in which case it will clear quickly with just increased water changes (again if fish is relatively easy to catch, I’d move to a hospital tank)
     
  3. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    I will isolate the fish in a hospital tank when I get home from work, and see if I can move the lump.

    I have levamisole on hand I think, as well as Praziquantel. These fish have been through a combined course of these after arrival, but there has been one more fish added after this that didnt get the treatment.

    Tank is 180 liters, normally 50%+ changed every week.
    Fish:
    32 ember tetras
    5 Corydoras
    2 Otocinclus
    2 Honey Gouramis
    ~2-300 Neocaridina shrimp
    2 african filter shrimp

    "Cycled" for a year, nirates usually test to ~5, didnt have time to measure ammonia or nitrite before work but will test as soon as I get home.

    I have some Sera Bactopur Direkt, which was recommended to me last time for Columnaris. But this will kill the filter.
    Do you think theres any point in using it?

    I will post to more locations, thank you for your reply
     
  4. Conort2

    Conort2 Member

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    I have had something very similar with a gold laser corydoras where it developed on the base of the dorsal fin. It grew to a certain size then all of a sudden disappeared. Now I’m not saying this is the same at all, it could be Columnaris which is a completely different ball game. Are any of the other fish showing symptoms? When my corydoras had something similar it was the only fish in the tank showing these symptoms.

    cheers

    Conor
     
    alto likes this.
  5. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    Its only this one
     
  6. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    How long did your fish take to develop and for it to disappear?
     
  7. alto

    alto Member

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    The daily water changes when treating sick fish is about having optimum water quality - it can help limit potential pathogen levels in the aquarium; in treatment tanks (which may be newly set up) it will obviously limit potential ammonia etc re possible non-cycled filter or medication affected filter media
    Even a quick daily vacuum of the substrate and various surfaces, can help remove parasite eggs etc

    In a planted tank, medication effects may be more variable re possible interaction with plants, substrate etc, which is part of the rationale behind using bare hospital tanks (the bare bottom also allows better observations re fish pooh)

    BUT

    some fish are very stressed by the minimalist surroundings (obviously light should be dim and good oxygenation of water (eg, filter splashing return, good surface agitation etc; while most air stones will provide additional (gentle) currents, it is not the most efficient manner to oxygenate water) and may have higher survival rates in the planted aquarium

    The Manual of Fish Health (Dr. Chris Andrews, Adrian Exell and Dr. Neville Carrington) goes into some detail re water quality, suitable medications/protocols, hospital tank maintenance etc , also directions for preparing medicated food

    At this stage, if all fish appear healthy, active, eating - sit quietly and observe the aquarium from a comfortable chair so you can be comfortable with minimal movements for 20-60min - I’d just do daily water changes of 50% (as that’s your normal routine) and monitor the affected fish for improvements: an otherwise healthy fish will show some to significant improvement every day)

    The Sera Bactopur Direkt is a good supportive medication (but will not directly impact Columnaris strains)

    Praziquantel is relatively effective as a bath (if it’s the appropriate medication) and seems less palatable than levamisol foods (though some of the commercial preps are treated to improve palatability)
    Seachem Focus contains a proven compound re preparation of medicated foods: I dissolve the medication, then add Focus (sometimes this does not completely dissolve), then the food (I choose familiar foods that my fish are already excited about eating, allow 10-20min reaction time (this varies with the food and medications)

    As Conor mentions it’s not unusual for Corydoras to develop fin “lesions”, and then recover (when otherwise healthy etc) ... though IME these lesions are not “gel-like”

    (My experiences with gel-like or seeming “thick bubbles” appearing on fish fins, then fish bodies (as the infection became more systemic) was very negative, feeding levamisol~food offered the best chances of recovery for infected fish. I’ll look for some photos though I’ve lost mine (dead computer) and Pandora’s Box website seems to have disappeared completely (excellent fish disease photos))
     
    dw1305 likes this.
  8. Conort2

    Conort2 Member

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    Can’t remember exactly, I remember it appearing as a very small pimple at first which developed into a larger and larger gel like lump. This then disappeared all of a sudden. Fish behaved fine the whole time and fed fine and no other fish were affected. I didn’t do anything different except maybe a few extra water changes once I noticed it.

    cheers

    Conor
     
  9. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    To clarify, I normally change 50% of the water once a week, not daily. But I will do some daily changes for a little while until the situation resolves.

    I did some (read -lots & frantic) googling and discovered two other possible causes for the gel lump, Lymphocystis or a fat lump that cories are prone to get when fed a high protein diet. Lymphocystis is a non lethal viral growth, a bit like herpes apparently. Too much protein in diet could also be a likely cause, since they tend to get a fair bit of food and are somewhat rotund. Sounds a bit like what Conor experienced. Very strange. I will continue to look into these, especially the fat lump one cause Ive only found people refering to it but no source.

    I wont seperate the fish tonight but will observe super closely and report back with any changes
     
  10. alto

    alto Member

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    Sorry I did understand that you did 50% weekly, I just meant continue to change the usual amount (50%)

    Rushing into some water changes is grand, but otherwise take a day (or more) to consider

    Re Columnaris, drop temperature to the lower end of the comfort range for your particular fish, the disease seems to progress slower (higher survival rates) in softer, acidic water - I only mention this as you reported previous Columnaris outbreak (not because I think your Corydora is showing symptoms)
     
  11. alto

    alto Member

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  12. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    I think I have discovered the root cause of whatever disease it is, I tested the water right after my last post and discovered a slight reading for Nitrite, between 0,025 and 0,05 ppm. The filter bacteria/media must have been affected by the move to the new canister filter a few weeks back, and big shame on me for not testing daily to make sure everything was ok after.
    No media was removed, only moved over to a new filter, but apparently that was enough to cause this lapse. Maybe the circulation has been different through the old sponges.

    Good news is that the fish seems to be doing better. The white gel mass has decreased a little bit and the redness at the root of the fin has subsided a fair amount. I am cautiously optimistic at this point. No medicine has been added, but I have been doing daily water changes of 50% and am also adding Prime daily to help neutralize the Nitrite. Feeding has been decreased a lot. My plan is to continue with this routine until Nitrite reads consistently 0 and the fish is healthy again. It seems likely that it is indeed some sort of bacterial infection based on how it looks and the redness at the fin root.
     
  13. Hufsa

    Hufsa Member

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    The fish has now fully recovered as far as I can see. Attached are some pictures taken of the healing process. Very interesting for me to follow along.
    I am very happy that it has recovered. I used to think that unless you medicated for the infection, the fish would only get worse and die and it would spread uncontrollably etc etc, which is pretty stupid when you think about it. The fish was in very good shape other than the fin affected, and when I addressed the likely root cause (nitrite), the fishes immune system was able to fight it off on its own.
    Obviously this will not be a given in all circumstances, for instance if the fish was in poorer overall health, wasnt eating, or if there was a much more serious disease or parasite.

    Monday 13
    20200113_144717.jpg

    Wednesday 15
    20200115_151732.jpg

    Friday 17
    20200117_134248.jpg

    Sunday 19
    20200119_201125.jpg
     
    sparkyweasel likes this.
  14. Matt @ ScapeEasy

    Matt @ ScapeEasy Member

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    Some great photography skills there! Glad you found the issue and that the fish is well again.
     

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