Tropheus Bloat Recurrence and Treatment

Q&A about diseases and their cure

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Tropheus Bloat Recurrence and Treatment

Post by mpentz »

Pam -

Greetings from Lexington, Massachusetts.

Though I am relatively new to Cichlid Room Companion, I am not new to cichlid keeping. I've been in the hobby off and on for just under 50 years, most recently quite active since 2005, focusing on tribe tropheini. I presently keep five tanks (90, 155, 180, 210, 265) with T. moori Nkonde yellow, T. moori Ilangi, T. species red Moliro, T. species black Kiriza, T. species black "Cherry Spot," T. moori "Golden Kazumba," and T. species Ikola "Kaiser." Also present: P. trewavase, P. species "Red Fin Longola" (one specimen), P. famula "Flame Tail," P. species "Red Bulu" (one specimen), Simochromis diagramma, and Limnotilapia dardenii.

I write with respect to the T. moori Nkonde yellow, which are kept with the P. famula "Flame Tail," about 35 individuals combined in about equal numbers in the 155. The Nkonde were acquired in April from Blue Chip Aquatics (Chip Spiegel). The Nkonde are wild-caught adults. As with all of my tanks, the 155 is kept at pH 8.55, and very low nitrates (5-15 ppm). 50%-plus water changes weekly. Feeding Ken's Spirulina Max, Ken's Veggie, and less often Ken's Tropheus Lovers. All other tanks are disease-free.

The Nkonde arrived with one visibly bloated fish and a couple of others showing early-stage symptoms. I destroyed the too-far-gone individual and successfully treated the tank with Clout. Over time, however, I have had to re-treat repeatedly. Always one Nkonde will hang back during feeding and exhibit the "coughing" symptom. Treatment is always successful, and I have not actually lost any more individuals to bloat (recently lost one to old age; classic wasting but eating to the end). P. famula "Flame Tail" completely unaffected.

Last two treatments, in an effort to eradicate the flagellate, I have taken Ad Konings' advice and also employed an antibiotic. Because nifurpirinol is not available in the U.S., I have used Kanaplex and, to try to get closer to the Konings' recommendation, Furan-2.

Today another individual showed the early symptoms, and I again started a Clout treatment, though not (yet) with an antibiotic, out of concern over impacts of repeated treatments. (I use Clout at recommended dosage; three treatments after at least 30% water changes, carbon removed.)

I am beginning to wonder whether occasional bloat breakouts and treatments are just the price of keeping my wild-caught Nkonde. But I write, of course, in the hope that you may have an idea how I might end the cycle. (I should note that the Nkonde suffer no aggression from the Flame Tails, and in fact are dominant over them.)

Hope you have some thoughts.


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Location: Ontario, Canada

Re: Tropheus Bloat Recurrence and Treatment

Post by Lisachromis »

Hi Marty,

Pam is in Africa right now enjoying herself! I wish I was there too, but cannot go. Instead I am watching "Ask Pam" for her. Unfortunately, you've asked something that's beyond me. If there is anyone out there who has gone through what Marty has or has some advice, please message me and I can pass it along. I hope you can get a handle on this as those are some great fish you got!

Thank you,

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