There are LEECHES in the fishttank.. EW  

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It's so nasty. Most leeches are not parasitic to fish but this is still too nasty and I draw the line. Our blue gourami was ailing but old for that species. When I pulled his corpse out once he died there were leeches attached but I hadn't noticed any when he was alive. The only fish we have left is the 23+ year old catfish. I will check her over when I pull her out before putting her in a temp tub. She lays on the bottom so I worry they may be biting her underside.

We'll be moving her into a temporary tub with bubbler. Everything but the filter mechanism is being thrown out, obviously filter material is being thrown out and replaced and we got new fabric plants. I'll bleach and then let dry the filter mechanism.

The guy at the store said the eggs will die if the tank is left to dry for 2 days. I'm going to use some bleach anyway and then let it dry 2 days as well. He said not to but we have used bleach several times in the past for other reasons on tanks and it was rinsed well and was fine.

On the plus side this will finally get rid of the snails as well.

How did we get leeches? I assume they came in some plants we bought awhile back. We already had snails so I didn't rinse them in salt but I never thought about worse things being possible. I have since read a soak in bleach water is good for pests in plants and wont hurt the plants, look that up for yourself though to get the right way to do that. Personally I'm just not buying any more live plants. Honestly I hate keeping fish but my dad likes having them but then I have to do all the work.

oh, by the way the store guy said they were dealing with this issue to, he let that slip out when I mentioned the chemical that kills leech eggs is no longer available, guess where we got the plants?

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Posted : October 26, 2019 3:54 am
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They kept latching onto me as I was cleaning stuff. Didn't hurt but freaked me out and I salted them off. I tried to get my dad to gently wipe the catfish with a saltwater soaked rag while I held her but he was too freaked out. I would have liked her belly and fins wiped for good measure then rinse her and put her in the tub but I didn't see any on her(but some I saw in the tank were pretty small). Hopefully she's too tough skinned for them. I did see them attached to snails. So they are the parasitic type and nasty little things.


Now the poor catfish has to wait a couple days in the tub. She has bubbles I'm not sure on adding the heater or not. I did bleach it, so it's probably okay but she's also pretty temp hardy.

This post was modified 3 months ago by TamanduaGirl

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Posted : October 26, 2019 10:36 pm
Noble Member Pats Friends

When I worked at PetSmart we bleached all the tank decorations as part of our weekly maintenance routine. So I'm sure your catfish will be just fine. 

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Posted : October 27, 2019 2:04 am
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Thank you. I'm sure she will be. I rinsed everything well and letting it dry so long will help neutralize any bleach if I did miss it. I'm more concerned with trying to be sure no leech eggs survive on anything I put back. I did put the thermometer in with her after cleaning and letting it dry awhile and the temp is tolerable so far. I'll check before bed again and can add the heater if I have to, but it does have some permanently attached silicone bumper bits so a longer dry time would make me feel better that all the nooks and crannies aren't harboring anything. Hopefully nothings hiding on her either. I sure don't want to be dealing with this again in the future.

She seems okay in the tub. I put the new plants in with her since she likes to spend her time hiding under the plants. She was on top of the plants at one point, I think she likes that the tub is nice and dark,  but when I fed her she went back to being under the plants and is settled.

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Posted : October 27, 2019 4:41 am
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Nasty. Ugh. Sorry you got leeches...

As for plants, we bleached many of the plants that went into our reptiles' vivs as well as a bunch of infested cacti. We were trying to get rid of "meelie bugs" or whatever my sister calls them. Just looked it up, yeah, guess they're called Mealybugs. The greenhouse we get our plants from has a problem with the mealybugs, but bleach will get rid of them. We always check the plants over thoroughly too prior to purchase. If we don't SEE mealybugs, we put them in the cart. But we still always wash them.

I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!

Posted : October 27, 2019 8:16 pm
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Thank you. If I ever do add real plants again I'll bleach them.

The poor catfish's sailfin is chewed up now 🙁 I guess the plants weren't soft enough. I got fabric ones but they do have plastic stems. The old ones were softer but I thought these felt okay. I put them with her so she'd feel safe under them while in the tub. It's black so I couldn't see this was happening till I got her out.

Edit: okay I feel a little better It should heal okay then not look ratty forever. I still feel awful she got hurt though.

Edit2: She seems happy in the fresh tank. I turned the light off for the day so she would feel safer. I just checked on her and she was exploring the new set up in between regular rests on the bottom. Was nervous about having to do a whole new tank with her being 23-24 it'd suck if that was what did her in, though she's survived worse, including the week long black out where we had no choice but to do near constant and large water changes just to keep the oxygen up.

This post was modified 3 months ago 3 times by TamanduaGirl

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Posted : October 28, 2019 8:17 pm
Black Emo

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