Taking care of tropical fish do not require a lot of effort on your part, but you cannot just ignore them either. Tropical fish diseases are almost always caused by our own failures to properly care for our fish, especially water care.
Before we get into describing common diseases let us make sure you understand clearly how to avoid most problems. Make sure you have a filtration system which is rated properly for your size of fish tank to keep the water clean. Take care of the filtration system according to the manufacturer’s instructions, never put off replacing filters or doing routine cleaning. Change out 15 to 20 percent of your aquarium water every week. Drain the water from the bottom of the tank to pull out excess dirt, feces, and excess food.
Do not overfeed your fish. This leads to increased levels of ammonia and fish feces in the water. Both of these conditions lead to an increase in tropical fish diseases attacking your fish. It is our responsibility to give fish a healthy living environment, and when we do, they remain healthy.
One of the most common tropical fish diseases you may run into is Ammonia Poisoning. Yes, it is not technically a bacteria or virus, but your fish are quite ill. This is caused by us. Check the filters, clean the tank, replace a large percentage of water, and then test the pH balance of the water. When ammonia poisoning sets in your fish may start having a purple tinge to their gills. You will see the fish near the surface, and they will appear to be desperate for air.
Bacterial Fin Rot is another disease which attacks tropical fish on a frequent basis. You may start to see the fins getting frayed, or damaged looking. The fins will appear shortened, and often get a white edge on them. You will need to get a good antibiotic treatment from your pet supply store. Before treating the water make sure you have cleaned, replaced some of the water, and resolved water quality issues which allowed the bacteria to attack in the first place. The treatment is usually highly effective and your tropical fish recover quickly.
Ick is another of the highly common tropical fish diseases, often considered the most common. If you start seeing small white spots covering your fish, looking like they have just been sprinkled with salt, they have the ick parasite. To treat ick you will want to add malachite green to the aquarium. Be aware malachite green will kill your snails or other invertebrates, so remove them first.
This is just 3 of the very common tropical fish diseases or afflictions you may encounter. Your pet supply center can recommend treatments for almost any disease, but the one thing they cannot do it take care of water quality and proper feeding for you. You can avoid most diseases by being very careful in caring for your fish, and save yourself the trouble of battling these common diseases.