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Sick Axolotl? Axolotl looking down in the gills? The doctors are in.

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Old 18th November 2011   #1
Dan
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Default Chewed up gills?

Soooo it might just be me being a little paranoid but...
I acquired a new axie last night from a local pet store. I had been eyeing him for a while and decided last night to go for it. My local pet store are pretty useless when it comes to their care - they keep them in a tank with small gravel and a built up 'land' type area (I've attempted to drop hints about the fact that they don't look after them correctly but to little avail...) - so I often feel like I'm rescuing the axies that I've got from them, heh.

When I transitioned him into his tank and was watching him I thought I noticed something behind his gills that I thought might be fungus. I decided to leave him overnight and inspect him closer today. When I looked closer today it didn't really seem like there was anything behind his gills but there was a sort of white sheen over the front of them... if that makes sense. It could just be his colouring I guess?
Apart from that, his gills look in very poor condition all chewed up like and in the past hour he's decided to go and float around the top of the tank (but I guess that's not really that unusual) ..

I've attached a picture but it's hard to see what I mean about the white sheen, probably cause of my crappy phone camera.

Should I be worried?
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Old 18th November 2011   #2
jcj57
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Default Re: Chewed up gills?

Could be heat stress causing the white film... we have had mid to high 30s out my way and the water has been way too hot, and my wild type developed a light film, I've tried the frozen bottles of water but they melt before I get home from work, so today I bought a chiller. Could try a tea bath and fridging him see if that help, it seems to help my little guy. His gills should just grown back.



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Old 18th November 2011   #3
Dan
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Default Re: Chewed up gills?

I wondered about heat, has been quite warm down here recently as well and I can imagine pet shop tanks would warm up a bit from the lights constantly being on them.

As for tea baths, I read that Indian Almond Leaves are the best to use but I don't have any of those at the moment and don't know where I'd find them quickly (I've ordered some online though) ... can I use other types of tea? Like a standard lipton or twinings tea bag if it's brewed and then left to cool and then plopped in the water or something? The threads I've found on tea baths are not very specific unless it's the almond leaves...



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Old 18th November 2011   #4
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Default Re: Chewed up gills?

Hope this helps you.

Tea bath for axolotls
Contributed by Daniel Weiner, August 2007. From Caudata site.

I mainly use teabaths for minor skin problems. It may also be used with fungal problems but on that account I prefer salt baths. Tea has a slightly antifungal and antibacterial effect (resulting from tannins) and additionally it closes the pores in the skin a little bit (mainly resulting from tannin and caffeine). The skin tightens and gets some kind of protective layer, making it harder for fungi and bacteria to intrude the body. On the other hand it makes it harder for salt or medicine to reach pathogens which are already inside the body - that is the reason I do not use it on fungal infections, although a tea bath is sometimes recommended as a cure for fungal infections by some people.

The medication is as follows: I take one bag of black tea without any additional aroma (it is important to use black tea because this kind of tea is fermented and so it has tannins) for every 10 litres of water (preferably used in a quarantine tank). This tea gets dashed with boiling water in a seperate bowl - I leave it there for at least 10 to 15 minutes so the tannins are resolved into the water. The tea has to cool down and is finally added to the quarantine water. After a week I make a bigger change of water (60% at least), the rest of the tea is removed over time by normal water changes. If you have to make more regular water changes (f.i. in a small bowl or tank) the tea concentration can be refilled. As far as I know there are no negative effects even for long term treatment.

A similar effect (although not as strong) may have the addition of dried oak or beech leafs now and then as a precaution.



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