Treating Ich with Salt

Discussion in 'Fish' started by Freddo, Jan 31, 2011.

  1. Freddo

    Freddo New Member

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    Can anyone tell me how effective salt is in the treatment of Ich when used in the aquaponics system. Does it permanently rid Ich from the system? From some of the threads I've read, the recommended dose is 3ppt for a period of about 3 weeks. I can't find any information anywhere on how the salt actually rids this parasite. At what stage of the ich cycle is it effective? Is it when it's attached to the fish (Trophozoite) or when free swimming as a Trophont or the infectious stage as Tomites. Does using salt in the system at a reduced rate (1ppt as fish health tonic) give the Ich some immunity when a higher dose has to be used?

    Does anyone have any views from their experience?
  2. Murray

    Murray Site Admin

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    I have only had the problem once about three years ago and I used 1kg per 100 ltrs at that time.
    I used a separate tank, a hospital tank and put the fish in that tank with that concentration for around 12 hours, then a complete water change to fresh water for around 12 hours, the repeated the process a total of three times.
    Loads of air and good water movement.

    It worked for me.

    As I understand it, the shock of the change kills the parasite. I have not had a problem since.

    I do not run salt in my systems, Some members of this forum do. It is a matter of personal preference.
  3. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Super Moderator Staff Member

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  4. Freddo

    Freddo New Member

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    Thanks Murray and thanks Yabbies.
    Yabbies - that article on Ich is excellent and probably the best I've seen to date. It really pays to understand the life cycle of Ich and the methodology behind the salt treatment which that article does.

    Cheers,
    Freddo
  5. simonavc

    simonavc New Member

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    My GP and Bass have itch.
    OK I have read the articles.
    The author suggest osmosis as the killer due to dehydration.
    Also mentions 5ppt as the upper limit of itch.
    However I used to see it in full marine tanks 35ppt.
    I'd love to avoid the handling required to treat seperately in a hosp tank.
    The author also suggest changing the salinity very slowly, which to means seems slightly contradictory to the osmosis causing death. You'd think that too slower change would not cause the required osmosis in the itch.
    The litle fellas are all scratching pretty badly.
    Ony thing I did differnt lately is add a few handfulls of sophate of potash to the system.
    Wondering if this was a bad idea.
    Any info on pH and itch?
  6. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Super Moderator Staff Member

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    I think it was Rupe that suggested 6ppt, this would be why.

    Salwater Ich and Marine Velvet are different species to Freshwater Ich.
    I cant remember which one of the two, but I did read somewhere that one of them is treated by putting the fish in freshwater.

    Cheers, Yabbies.
    .
  7. fishfood

    fishfood Active Member

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    Pretty shore it was Rupt said bass would only tolerate 1.5 ppt salt
  8. simonavc

    simonavc New Member

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    Thanks for the info, Ive had the bass at 6ppt once before for some cotton wool disease that was infecting the fish after shipping. Did less damage than the disease which took out 80% of the bass fingerlings. So perhaps it was anther type of fish other than bass.
    This stuff is like reefing, bad things happen fast and good things slowly.
    I think you're correct about the marine velvet, I remeber something about fresh water baths, same deal with osmosis being the killer. we used to use hyposalinity treatment measured with Specific Gravity and drop the SG from 1.027 to 1.009 for 6 weeks, If I remember right (which I often dont) that was a drop from 35ppt to about 12ppt. I only ever did this once and never had dramas again.
    Hope it's the same with ich.
    I assume I am constantly adding the disease with the live feeders, so a fairly permanent cure is required.
    Thanks again.
    Simon
  9. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Salt bath and quarantine tank for the live feed. It would take a bit more planning and scheduling of feed stock, but would be worth it. What live feed are you giving them?

    Cheers, Yabbies.
    .
  10. Freddo

    Freddo New Member

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    I have just started with aquaponics and have presently 55 Jades in my tank. Before getting the fish, I cycled the system using live feeders from the pet store. This is where I made my mistake because as a consequence I have infected Jades with Ich. Because I don't have a separate tank big enough to treat and isolate them in, I have elected to salt the whole system to 3PPT to hopefully rid the Ich permanently. Has been a big lesson for me and I realise now how important it is to quarantine any fish put in the system. The fish are doing well now but so far have only been in the salt for 2 days. I lost quite a few fish in the early days due to fungus which would appear to be a secondary infection of the Ich.

    Freddo
  11. Yabbies4me

    Yabbies4me Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Send Rupe a PM, he'll set you straight, but from memory I think in a recent post he recommended 6ppt for Ich.
    .
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2011
  12. RupertofOZ

    RupertofOZ New Member

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    6ppt has the necessary shock & awe factor to knock it quick... and/or if severe...

    And can then be brought back to 3ppt.. and held for at least two weeks...

    But 6ppt is as much as most veges can stand... and strawberries and cucumbers... and a lot of new sedlings wont tolerate more than 3ppt...

    3ppt will be fine... if it's only just appeared...
  13. Freddo

    Freddo New Member

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    Hello RupertofOZ,

    Thanks for getting back.
    The fish presently seem fine apart from a few that were flashing a couple of days ago before salting. I think I could see a few white spots but hard to tell in the tank while they are scooting around. They are presently very active and feeding well. Water quality is good with pH 6.5, nitrites and ammonia 0. Will leave salt in for around 3 weeks.

    Cheers,
    Freddo
  14. fishfood

    fishfood Active Member

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    Just leave the salt as long as its not over 3ppt in the plants will gadually take it up
  15. Freddo

    Freddo New Member

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    Thanks Fishfood.

    Freddo

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