Cichlid Diseases

Just like most living creatures cichlid fish can get diseases too. It is just the way Mother Nature tends to run the show. Looking after sick cichlid fish is not that much fun, but it’s an individual’s responsibility as being a cichlid grower to bring about their good health.

If you neglect your cichlids should they be sick and tired it has the potential to cause their symptoms to become worse or worse yet even lead to their demise.

Cichlid fish can get sick for many number of reasons and one must tread carefully and do the proper research in order to avoid potential disaster.

The majority of these problems can generally be noticed pretty easily giving you plenty of time to act, where as others although pretty rare can strike quite suddenly with the need for instant action  to avoid the worst.

A lot of these sorts of problems can be put down to infections from bacteria, fungi or parasites. Then you have environmental factors such as poor water quality or sudden raising or lowering of water temp (these guys tend to like a constant).

Below are a few typical Cichlid sicknesses that you need to be cautious about:

Hole-in-the-head disease

Also known as hexamita, this disease is typical among Cichlids and other freshwater fish. The fungus that causes cotton wool disease is found in many aquariums feeding on leftover food and fish carcass.
  1. Its symptoms are appetite and weight loss and small depressions on the head (thus the name “hole in the head”). There are many reasons for this disease, among them poor water quality and poor diet.
  2. Some studies have indicated that there could be a link between hole-in-the-head disease and the lack of vitamins C and D as well as phosphorous and calcium.

Most Cichlid diseases are caused by poor water quality and diet, so clean your aquarium regularly and feed your cichlids right. It’s always good to be ready for cichlid diseases. Keep yourself well informed by reading books, researching, and networking with others so you know how to raise your cichlids happy and healthy.

Malawi bloat

This sort of Cichlid problem is common amongst African Cichlid fish along with fish that are utilizing a generally organic eating routine. Signs and symptoms consist of lack of appetite, inflammation in the abdomen, whitened fecal material, super fast inhaling and exhaling, as well as sulking towards the bottom of the aquarium. In its advanced period,  Malawi bloat can harm the fish’s hard working liver,  kidney as well as swim bladder,  and also the afflicted Cichlid may possibly die anywhere from  24 to 72 hours depending on severity.

Treatment for Malawi bloat entails either one or all of the following suggestions:
  1. Slowly adding Metronidazole and Clout to the water, make sure you obtain these from a reputable dealer or from a pet store u are familiar with and trust. Dont be afraid to ask them questions about your problem ….the chances are that they may have had to deal with the same thing before.
  2. Changing about 50 percent of the water, and detaching the filtration systems. There seems to be of disagreement amongst experts as to the true causes of Malawi bloat, but the majority tend to believe that it is caused by a protozoan that naturally resides in fish intestines, proliferating when the cichlid is not fed properly or when the water is dirty(NEGLECT).


Fish Tuberculosis

An very dangerous Cichlid disease, fish tuberculosis is extremely infectious and may kill a whole fish tank populace in a short time. If you ever find yourself dealing with this  then get in touch with an expert or where good rubber gloves as humans are susceptible through cracks in the skin or cuts when they are fixing Cichlid cleaning the tank. Among the symptoms of this cichlid disease are loss of appetite, sunken stomach, white exterior blotches, and frayed fins.
  1. If you suspect that one of your cichlids may have this disease, remove your entire aquarium population and place them in a hospital tank, making sure to separate the sick cichlid.
  2. Treat any of your new tanks by means of antibiotics like Melafix or Pimafix and make sure your old tanks are disinfected and the substrate bleached thoroughly or thrown out.


Cotton wool disease

The fungus that causes cotton wool disease is found in many aquariums. Feeding on leftover food and fish carcass , being  a whitish gray coating on the skin, ulcer, damaged fins, patches on the gills, and erosion of head tissue on fish. It is extremely contagious.
  1. Maintaining aquarium hygiene and preventing chilling, injury, and other forms of stress are some things you can do to prevent your cichlids from catching this disease.
  2. The best way to treat cotton wool disease is by salt bath immersion, gentian violet application, or fungicidal medication.


Swim Bladder Disease

Whenever a Cichlid suffers from this ailment it effects the swim bladder, an epithelium-lined abdominal sac responsibility for fish buoyancy. You wil find  that Cichlid fish  affected by swim bladder disease float at the top of the water or find it difficult to stay on the bottom of the tank. If the pressure within the bladder gets to extreme the fish will end up belly up!

**Poor diet is one of the major causes of swim bladed disease. When a cichlid is not fed right, it can have intestinal gas or blockage, or parasites the chance to wreak havoc on the swim bladder.
  1. You can minimize swim bladder disease by not feeding your cichlids too much protein or dried food.
  2. Introducing lots of fiber-rich food such as zucchini, squash, peas, spinach, carrots, and lettuce.
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