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Help plz on my new Ikola???

3402 Views 8 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  24Tropheus
Hi all

I have just purchased 24 F1 ikola' at around the 1-1.5" and have them in my 48x18x24 (which i think is a 90? ) and i have 2 that just stay in the top corners of the tank? I have had them for about 2 weeks now and this is my first time with buying a young colony of tropheus to try get a decent breeding group.

Is this happening because they are getting harrased by the the dominant fish in the tank or would it be down to something else? Should i keep an eye on them and if they get to bad take them out of the tank let them recoup and put them in again at a later date? Have i put to many in there for the size of tank becuase i thought it was best to start with a larger group to then thin them down ata later date?

I would be most grateful with any feedback anyone has? 8)

Thanks again
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Are they feeding? If not, take them out and treat them for bloat. Then keep a close eye for other fish that begin acting in the same way and not feeding. If others show similar signs, treat the tank.
If they are feeding well and there's no obvious harrassment, I'd give them another couple of weeks to settle down, but keep a close eye on them. Mine took about a month to start behaving normally but I had a couple like yours that wouldn't feed and eventually wasted away and died.
Mr Mbuna

Good advice.

Also bere in mind.
If you do take them out you will prob never get them back in.
It is also possible that a new one will become the whipping boy. (Someone has to be the lowest guy in any pecking order)
Its one of the drawbacks of Ikola or any Sp black in 4 foots.
If you can catch them without disturbing the rest they are so far gone prob die anyway in the main tank so hospital tank is their only reasonable chance. (If they have stopped feeding they need treatment, even bullied Troph still eat)

Another thing you can try (if they are not too far gone) is hanging small barriers over the sides at the top.
Worked using two Biolife filters for me. High up gap at the top ends.
They sometimes use these to start territories.

I would advise using tank barriers in a longer tank but in a four foot I do not think you have room.

Your main concern should I think be keeping the main group happy, concentrate on keeping the water perfect. The whole colony is under stress (as is any group as they sort out pecking order) so thats your best hope of keeping at least most alive and the colony viable I think.

Good luck whatever you try.
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Tropheus are aggressive and sometimes they simply thin the herd for you. They will work the colony to a size and number that they want no matter what you try to do sometimes a colony of 20-30 can end up as a colony of 10 or less. That's just how it goes.
Thanks people but 2 have died now and i dont think it was bloat maybe harrassment tho?

All of the rest of the group seem very happy, but so did ther other 2 before they died? They are all feeding really well on spiriluna flake and very active in the tank. The 2 that died were feeding fine so i dont think it was bloat so at the moment i will keep an eye on the rest.

Can anyone please tell me asap where i can find the treatments for bloat in the UK?

Thnaks again guys for all your help anyone else wnt to put there 2 cents in would be appreciated !!
"Octozin - from Waterlife Research

The active ingredient is Metronidazole which is the same as used on people for gut infections. It can be around 50% effective as a treatment as long as you ignore the manufacturer's dose rates on the side of the package. Those dose rates are based on a broad spectrum treatment for everthing from neon tetra's to angelfish, not Rift valley cichlids. You need to at least double the amount of tablets per dose and an upto x8 dose can be administered to adult fish.

Metronidazole - from Vets

Pure Metrondazole is also available from a vet and can be effective if used correctly. There is an excellent treament regime on the article link above.

The dose rate I use is 400mg (crushed/powdered) per 50litres of water. This dose is carried out twice in succession at 8hr intervals. Remove infected fish into a 50ltr tank and treat there with just a heater and strongly aerated sponge filter for company.

Again with this treatment its often only 50% effective against bloat.

Coly - from Preis Aquaristic (Germany)

This is a natural based treatment aimed specifically at treating cichlids for hole in the head and bloat. The standard dose rate on the bottle is adequate. About 30% effectivity with this one.

Sera Bactopur Direct - from Sera (Germany)

This is a relatively new product and I've had some excellent results sofar with 50%+ treatment success. Standard dose rate as on the packet is enough to keep pathogen levels low within a tank as a preventative treatment. For fish that are infected with bloat dissolve 1 tablet in 4 litres of tank water and leave the fish for 30mins in this solution. This works well especially if fish are caught in the early stages of this condition.

There is also a food version of this available called Sera Bacto Tabs which can be fed to fish that are still feeding, this is a useful option for treating tanks where you suspect an outbreak is about to spread amongst it inhabitants.

Baytril - from vets

This is one of the products that vets are currently pushing instead of Emtryl. The only issue with it is that it can only be administered via food. As with the Sera Bactotab food it can be used as a preventative treatment only. Dose rate is 4ml of solution per 100gm of dried food (pellets are best).

From personal experience the best way to treat bloat is to mix two of the above products. I believe that there is limited success with each of the above treatments because of the wide range of pathogens that can cause bloat. If you treat with a metronidazole based product you may end up missing the pathogen that is causing the disease but wiping out the competition instead.

My current personal preferences are,

Sera Bactopur Direct + Preis Coly

Sera Bactopur Direct + Waterlife Octozin at a x4 dose.

For badly infected fish I use the regime below,

Sera Bactopur @ 2 tablets per 50ltrs + Metronidazole @ 400mg per 50ltr. After 24hrs carry out a 50% waterchange and then rest the fish for 24hrs, if there is no visible improvement then re-dose. This dose can be carried out upto 4 times.

With all the regimes above put an extra airstone in the treatment tank as so to maximise the O2 levels and gas exchange.

I've found the above treatment regimes to be around 70% effective and if the disease is caught early enough they can be 100%."

I hope Mike does not mind but this is nicked from his excellent article for treating bloat in the UK. If you want to talk to Mike direct you may have to register on
I think thats the only place he posts now.

Please note CLOUT is not on the list because it does not work better than these or because it is illegal to use it here but because you can not buy it here as far as I know (no licence for sale here I think) and we have not tried it.
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I do not think many Troph die of direct harrissment (I have nursed individuals back to health that had no fins left and many scales removed) but the do die from all sorts of things brought on by stress that they would normally throw off.
Already sick Troph die very easily. It is very hard to spot what they are dieing off I think.
Many of new Troph even from good sources still die in the first few weeks.
A large proportion Troph from most sources die within the first few weeks unless you spot what is wrong with them and treat with the right med.

I am saying this not to put you down mate but in an attempt to help you find and stop the problem.

All the best James
I cant seem to get any medicine from a vets without them coming to look at my fish or me taking them to them??? Any help???

I definately think its bloat now but its only affected about 4 ? will the others suffer too?
Get the Octozin - from Waterlife Research then most large aquarium shops will have it.

Funny the Vet just wrote a prescription when shown a bag of Julies.

(No bloat at the time for me)

I have heard of them even refusing treatment. You could try a few others. PFK publishes a list of vets happy to treat fish but I can not find it.

This list is from another site cichlidcity I think.

A good vet not only for fish but also for reptiles and exotics is a guy called Craig

Chine House vets

Ashcroft Veterinary Centre Shawbirch Ashcroft Veterinary Centre Oakengates
12 Acorn Way, Shawbirch, Telford, TF5 0LW 77-79 Market St. Oakengates, Telford, TF2 6EA
Tel: 01952 249141 Tel: 01952 270115
Emergency Tel: 01952 249141 Emergency Tel: 01952 270115
Surgery Times: Surgery Times:
Mon-Fri: 8.30 - 6.30pm Mon-Fri: 8.30 - 6.30pm
Saturday: 8.30 - 11.00am Saturday: 8.30 - 1.00pm

Appointment Times: Appointment Times:
15 minute consultation to allow for full 10 minute consultation to allow for full examination and examination and discussion. discussion.
Mon-Fri:9.00am - 11.00am, 4.30pm - 6.30pm Mon-Fri: 9.00am - 11.00am, 4.30pm - 6.30pm

Do not know how to help more.
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