Cichlid Fish Forum banner
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My young (and first) cichlid seems to have sprouted a new forehead within the last few days. I'm not sure if it's something that's normal, or if it's some strange growth that I should be worried about. I have pictures but am unable to upload them until later - so I can do it later if I need to! Any thoughts?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,008 Posts
Is it a fuzzy type of growth? A bump? I think I'll need that picture or at least a more detailed description before I can even make a guess. .

Also
What kind of cichlid is it? How long have you had it?
Any other fish in the tank?
What are you water parameters and how often do you do partial water changes?

Robin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Not fuzzy. It simply looks like he has an enlarged forehead. He's an african cichlid, but to be honest that's all I know. I got him from the petstore in a mixed african cichlid tank. I've had him for 3 months, and there haven't been any problems with him or anything. The tank is cycled; I had it for a few months before I got the cichlid. There are no other fish in the tank, which is 8 gallons. It's a biOrb, but I've modified it a tad by adding extra aeration.

Here's what he looked like before:


Here are a few of what he looks like now:






What do you think?? He HAS been less active the last few days, which is why I've been keeping a close eye on him. I usually do partial water changes at LEAST once a week, but I just did an extra one this week because of the strange behavior. The water is at 80 degrees, nitrates and nitrites are at zero, ammonia is at zero, as well. The pH is quite high (the pH level in the water where I live is ridiculous) at about 9.0, which has been that way ever since I got him. He is still pretty excited to eat, but like I said, is not as active as usual.

Thanks for your reply!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,008 Posts
From the picture(s) it doesn't look like anything abnormal. Some fish, C.Moorii is one, develop a large 'forehead' as they mature, but I'm not sure that's what you have here. Does your fish occasionally show irregular dark patches on his side? Not growths, color change.

Try posting your pictures in the unidentified folder and see if we can determine what sort of fish he is that way we can at least know if the change you're seeing is normal.

Do you have plans for a larger tank? An eight gallon tank is considered extremely small for these fish.

Robin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The growth now seems to be on one side of his head more than the other. I don't think I've noticed dark patches before, but I haven't really been looking.

A 20 gallon tank awaits us at home...I'm a college student in a dorm room with not much space! He's got the tank all to himself, though, when we get there. :)

Thanks again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
18,306 Posts
The fish looks part M. callainos, but I don't think it's pure. It has an odd body shape, and there is some slight barring in the first pic that almost looks kenyi-ish.

Not sure this fish will be happy in a 20G tank, either. But if you don't plan to try to keep anything else with it, it would certainly be better than an 8G tank.

If the lump is moving around, it may be some sort of cyst or fatty tumour beneath the "skin".

Kim
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,008 Posts
If the lump is more on one side than the other then it doesn't sound like normal growth. I asked about the dark patches on the sides because C.Moorii will show this sort of coloring when they get excited or stressed. But the body doesn't look like C.Moorii--at least not in the picture. (Could be a hybrid of some kind.)

Did you ask in the unidentified folder? It'll be helpful to know what he is even if the bump is not part of his normal growth.

For now I'd just keep an eye on the bump and also watch for any changes in the fish's behavior. Loss of appetite, lethargy, gasping, etc. If it's some sort of tumor then there's not much you'll be able to do but as Kim has mentioned fish do get bumps and lumps and not all of them are cause of concern.

Robin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The lump hasn't moved at all, but yes, it is more on one side more than the other.

I just posted in the unidentifieds folder. I looked up some pictures of M.callainos, and those looked quite similar to the one I have. I would say almost identical, but of course I'm no expert. We'll see what everybody else thinks about it.

He's still got quite the monster appetite and gets pretty active when he eats, and there's no gasping, but he's just hanging out in the back all day long, with some of his fins held close to his body (like in the 2nd and 3rd pictures...except for feeding time, then all fins are out like in the 4th picture). He's usually quite active, swimming all over the tank, so that makes me a little worried.

I finally got a shot of him from the other side, which is the side that the growth is on. You still can't see it very well in the picture; today the skin over it is a little rough looking, sort of as if it were a callus on somebody's hand that were peeling off a little.

Sorry for the extremely un-precise language, I'm not sure of what I'm describing!!

Anyway, here's the new picture. Kind of a strange angle, but he wasn't being too photo-cooperative today. You can still see the weird lump:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,008 Posts
When fish are living alone--without any other fish in the tank--they can become shy--for lack of a better word. This is because when they don't see other fish swimming around it sends a message to them that it's not safe to be swimming around either.
I don't know if this is what's going on with your fish since he's been living alone the entire time and the shy behavior is new--still, it could be part of it. THese fish change in many ways as they mature.

You still can't see it very well in the picture; today the skin over it is a little rough looking, sort of as if it were a callus on somebody's hand that were peeling off a little.
The peeling skin doesn't sound good--definitely not normal. Is he scratching or rubbing against objects in the tank frequently? And by frequently I mean hourly.
You mentioned your ph being high. That's not a problem in itself but if there's any ammonia present then the high ph will make that ammonia much more toxic to your fish. Try doing several 30% water changes spaced a few hours apart and watch to see if this changes his behavior any. What are you using for a declorinator? Make sure its a good quality one, (I recommend Seachem Prime).

One of the major problems for small tanks is that the water quality can go down hill fast. Poor water quality leaves your fish open to all kinds of illness and disease and can actually kill them on its own.

Please post back after you do the water changes. Do you have a fish/pet store nearby? You may need to get him some meds.

Robin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well, good news!!

Before I even had a chance to do the water changes like you suggested, Robin, the bump went down!! Now there is only just a bit of a white mark, which looks like a "scab" from healing up. Maybe he just hit himself really hard on a rock or something? He's pretty much back to normal, just a tiny slight bump where the "growth" was at. He's back to being himself, too, quite active around the tank, fins looking happy again.

I definitely had not noticed him rubbing or scratching in the tank hourly. I keep a pretty close eye on the tank conditions, because I know that it doesn't take much for water conditions to go downhill.

I've been using API Stress Coat - is that fine, or do you think I should use Prime instead?

Thank you for all your help!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,008 Posts
Great, glad he's doing better.

On the Stress Coat: if your tap water has chloramines added to it, (need to call the water company to find out), then Stress Coat may not adaquately deal with the chloramines. You can read more about declorinators by clicking on the link below.

Once again, I'm glad the fish seems to be okay.

Robin
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Top