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Thread: Question on hospital tank temperature

  1. #1
    Jumbo Steve Nguyen's Avatar
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    Question on hospital tank temperature

    Hello:

    I have a fish that's laying on the bottom of the pond for almost a week now and it refuses to die. most of the time, it's laying on the side. I can tell it's getting weaken though. Anyhow, I can't really tell what the symptom is because there is none that I can tell with visual inspection so I thought I put it in the hospital tank. I got the hospital tank setup today and it's ready to go. question is how slow or fast can I bring the temperature to mid 70's degrees? it's around 60 F degrees at the moment. realistically speaking, this is probably a learning experience rather anything else so please give me some suggestions. thanks!

    Steve

  2. #2
    Jumbo B.Scott's Avatar
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    Fastest I would dare with a sick fish would be around 3-4F per day

    B.Scott

  3. #3
    Daihonmei dick benbow's Avatar
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    Steve, Scot's advice is good...

    and I have something to say and I hope you'll take it in the right context, it's for you but also for those not posting but reading and hopefully learning.

    When i read that someone is setting up a QT tank with a sick fish, I shutter. Because a sick fish needs to go into an established, high quality water environment to begin it's treatment. i say this not in criticism as i started the same as all...taking trial and error as I learned. But looking back on the road traveled I can tell you that a priority is to have a nice sized QT up and running with koi in it and wonderful filtration always available at a moments notice. yes it's an exrtra expense etc, but when working with a sick fish thier chances of recovery based on a solid stable environment is so vastly improved.

    some of my friends keep their favorite koi that were injured or lost their pattern but are still loved in the QT tank to keep the filters running. That way something out of balance with the rest of their display pond does interfere and yet the service they do to prepare the water and offer companionship to the sick koi is well worth the price of feeding. As always make sure you know to the gallon for medication purposes what your QT tank holds.

  4. #4
    Oyagoi RayJordan's Avatar
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    Dick, great comments. As one gets more serious aobut koi and higher quality koi a larger Quarantine/Hospital tank running 27/7 is a considerable expense but well worth the investment in the long term.

  5. #5
    Jumbo B.Scott's Avatar
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    An alternative is a flow through system. I recently saw a very nice one with a heat exchanger where the incoming water was heated by the outgoing over flow. Not cheap but effective. The other problem with having a fish in the QT/ quarantine as standby to keep the filters going is that the filter adjusts to the load given. putting a second fish into the system or removing the stand-bye fish to the main pond and replacing it with a substantially larger fish means the filter system is going to be over loaded and start producing nitrites. You can counter this with extra water changes and the filter will catch up in short order.

    Something else I have thought about was to install a drip feed of ammonia into the QT. A dilution could be made, placed in a large reservoir above the QT and hooked up to a hospital IV drip to slowly feed this into the tank. You would still need to do water changes but the filter would need much less flushing as little in the way of solid waste would be produced. The other advantage would be that the filter load could be increased to near the maximum of the filters capacity thus allowing at addition of any size fish to the system.

    B.Scott
    Semper in excreta, sumus solum profundum variat

  6. #6
    Jumbo Steve Nguyen's Avatar
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    Thanks for the advices, Scott and Ray!

    Dick, your advice is well taken. thanks!

    btw, looking back, it seems like my fish got siick as temperature warming up. I guess the fish immune system is still weak from the long cold winter so it's a good idea to get the QT going before spring time arrives even the bacteria is till in dormant. maybe I have been lucky but I haven't got sick fish during warmer months at all.

    Steve

    Quote Originally Posted by dick benbow
    Steve, Scot's advice is good...

    and I have something to say and I hope you'll take it in the right context, it's for you but also for those not posting but reading and hopefully learning.

    When i read that someone is setting up a QT tank with a sick fish, I shutter. Because a sick fish needs to go into an established, high quality water environment to begin it's treatment. i say this not in criticism as i started the same as all...taking trial and error as I learned. But looking back on the road traveled I can tell you that a priority is to have a nice sized QT up and running with koi in it and wonderful filtration always available at a moments notice. yes it's an exrtra expense etc, but when working with a sick fish thier chances of recovery based on a solid stable environment is so vastly improved.

    some of my friends keep their favorite koi that were injured or lost their pattern but are still loved in the QT tank to keep the filters running. That way something out of balance with the rest of their display pond does interfere and yet the service they do to prepare the water and offer companionship to the sick koi is well worth the price of feeding. As always make sure you know to the gallon for medication purposes what your QT tank holds.

  7. #7
    Honmei Brutuscz's Avatar
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    I have done my hospital tank the cheapest way possible. 560 gallon kiddie pool from walmart ($15)...whiskey barrel overflow filter from lowes($20). Filled with polyester batting from walmart($7). I happened to have an extra 9 watt tetra uv...so its on there.

    My question is: I realize it is best for a sick fish to be kept at around 75 degrees. BUT..if your pond water is 55 degrees, this is pretty useless. The temperature shock will make an already sick fish worse. Don't you think its best to keep a hospital tank around the same temp as the main pond?

  8. #8
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    You make a good point Brutuscz, but I go the other direction...no new fish unless the pond is 65F-80F. When the pond is too cool to have the residents' immune systems functioning well, I would not want any fish added to their home.


    B.Scott: The flow through idea has my interest. I need to set up a quarantine for koi too large for the garden pond that serves as my QT. It will have to be aboveground. In my climate that creates a problem with water temps getting too high for 5 months of the year, and shifting from too hot to too cool overnight. A constant flow from the tap with a dosing system to dechlorinate would give good water quality and a constant temperature.....Something for me to consider.

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