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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
3 Weeks ago I stumbled upon a guy selling about 25 adult haps on facebook. About half of them are emaciated. They all eat, are fairly active, and don't appear to have any illness. Long story short, one of the fish was a fossorochromis rostratus. He is about 6-7". Has a small sunkin belly, but seems to be more underfed/malnourished than anything. Anyway, he spits out his food 3-4 times if i feed him anything larger than a 1mm pellet. Should I be concerned with parasites? I hate to treat him for no reason.

Ammonia - 0
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate - 20

I do 50% water changes weekly. He lives in a 125 gallon but is hanging out in a 20 quarantine right now.
 

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I would isolate the fish right away and see if it continues to exhibit this behaviour. If so, I believe others have used metro to potentially cure any potential parasite inside the fish.

The sunken belly and spitting food is a good enough signal to me, though, to remove the fish from your main tank and put into a hospital tank.

Edit - sorry, reading this on a cell phone and missed your last line about the fish already being in a small quarantine tank.
 

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I always like to see the clear or white thready feces to confirm bloat and know that metronidazole will work.

If he in eventually eating, just playing with the food first and the feces are thick and food colored (normal) then I would try to get a better diagnosis before selecting a medication.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yeah he is not displaying any other symptoms. Tried some whole krill and he ate it without spitting it back out. Maybe just needs to adjust to new food?
 

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It's possible. Just keep a close eye on things. A healthy cichlid should crush its food, so any time they shy away, I would take caution, unless it is holding.

I recently lost a yellow lab that was doing this and also had a sunken belly. There was never any sign of stringy white poo, which I thought was odd. It would go after the food but then spit it right out.

Hopefully yours is just trying to adjust to the environment and will turn things around. Good luck!
 

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Keep feeding him 1mm pellets if he likes those. Caution is good and you want the belly to flatten out. But no sense using metronidazole if it will not treat whatever he has, if anything. Lots of things can cause spitting food or sunken belly and may have other remedies.

I acquired an adult hap one time and it took a long time for him to start to eat normally. I wondered if he had a vision problem and started feeding him larger pellets...seemed he could see those better. Your guy likes the 1mm pellets though.
 
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