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Need Help with setting up a Hospital Tank

1285 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  hollyfish2000
Recently my Male Red Zebra has been getting picked on in my 55g mbuna tank. Yesterday I noticed things were really bad when his fins were nipped up and his scales looked "dirty". Since I didn't have an extra tank at the time, I filled up a 5g bucket with tank water and put him in there with just an airstone aerating the water. So far he's survived the night just fine, and I fed him this morning and he's doing good. I put some stress coat and a bit of salt in there yesterday in hopes that he'd start healing.

Today I'm going down to the LFS to buy a 10g tank to use as a hospital tank. I was just curious what the procedure would be to help him heal. I'm probably just going to buy one of those 10g "starter kits" with a small HOB filter, heater, air pump, etc. And get him in there.

Once I get the tank home I'm gonna clean everything out and fill it with tank water. Then plop him in there with some stress coat and a bit of salt. Should I expect him to get back to 100%? Or are his fins going to be permanently nipped up? Also how long should I keep him in there and when do I know when I should return him to the big tank? I'll take any advice. Thanks.
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Melafix will help him heal. Yes, his fins will grow back; not sure about the "dirty scales." Be sure to bring some media over from your existing tank so your fish doesn't end up in the middle of the cycle while trying to recover. Might also bring over some rocks from the main tank, both to boost bacteria and make him feel more secure.

Not sure if you'll be able to return him, though . . . wouldn't he just get picked on again?
Well my 55g isn't full stocked yet, I was planning on overstocking it a bit to curb some of the aggression inside. I have adequate filtration, I was just going to get a few more fish. Hopefully then he wouldn't get picked on. But if I don't ever put him back in what will I do with him? Keep him in my hospital tank forever?
If you put him back in when he's healed with a group of additional/new fish and move the rocks around a bit, it might be fine. I have personally re-homed a few fish that were getting picked on or doing too much picking on others . . .
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