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

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Old 10th February 2010   #1
reeceaduncan
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Unhappy Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Hey all.I need help! My poor lil axie Morris has been upset lately, and his gills have gone very dark. A sort of dark green/black. He nearly got all the way out of the tank yesterday. He panics and swims as hard as he can. He also isn't eating.

His tankmate Halifax is fine, but Morris is worrying me.

at the moment Morris is in the fridge to keep him cool and hopefully heal, but he's been in with regular water changes of course) for almost 3 days now.

Here's the water perameters:

ph: averaging 7.5
NO2 - less than 0.3mg/l
NH3 - 0.

Here's a picture:

Picasa Web Albums - Fin

Anyone who can suggest what this is and what I can do, please help!



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Old 10th February 2010   #2
melfly
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Hi, how long have you had them in that tank. It doesn't look cycled. Can you get an ammonia test. How often do you test and do water changes? Also what is the temp. Mel



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Old 10th February 2010   #3
Julia
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Looking at the picture your axolotl looks very thin, what do you feed your axolotl?
Normally when an axolotl shows signs of wanting to leave the water , there is a problem with the water quality, do you know what temperature the water is at the moment?. Is there a possibility that anything has possibly fallen in the water..insecticides, cleaning chemicals etc.
Fridging your axolotl is a good move, do try to offer live earthworm while it is there, hopefully it will help to put some weight on.



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Old 10th February 2010   #4
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Unhappy Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

It's summer here and the temperature in the tank sits at a fairly constant 20-22 degrees.

I know he's thin, but he won't eat either. The latest Ammonia (nh3, nh4) test says 0.

He normally eats 1or 2 earthworms a day.

Has anyone seen the dark gills before? What can I do?

I did a water change (about 1/3 of the tank) a few days ago. How would I know if the tank is cycled?

The only two additives we've added to the water are:

1: Primer, to age the water, eliminate chlorine etc. The two that I've used are: Stability by Seachem, and Prime, by the same company.

2: Magic Clear, which is made by Aristopet. It's meant to make particles in the tank sink to the bottom to keep the water clear.



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Old 10th February 2010   #5
Tina
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Hi,

I donīt know water clear by aristopet, but I know such products for using in a pond to remove algae. They can be harmful to axies and I would a big water change (80%) to remove as much of the product as possible.

The dark red gills are a sign for stress and the red line on his back, too.
To put him in the fridge is a good idea to calm him down.

-Tina-



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Old 10th February 2010   #6
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Thanks Tina. I don't know about the magic clear stuff either. I might try a big water change again and not use the magic clear. But in the meantime, poor Morris isn't eating and his gills are still so dark green!



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Old 10th February 2010   #7
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

dont use any of that stuff to make the water clear its no good for axolotls gills small water changes and a well cycled tank is the only thing i know works to get clear water, good luck with the little fella, he does look thin.



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Old 10th February 2010   #8
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Owch! Just looked at the picture.
Thats not something that happens overnight.
I think you need to seriously rethink his diet.
If you have been feeding 1 or 2 earthworms a day and he's still this thin he needs to see a vet.
Could we see a pic of your other one?

Mel



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Old 10th February 2010   #9
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

He's only become this thin the last few days since he hasn't been eating. Normally he's a healthy size and weight. I can't force feed him.The other Axie, Halifax is a good eater and he's fine.

I suppose I might have to start my tank over again to be sure there are no contaminents in there. Not much else I can do.



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Old 10th February 2010   #10
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Mine are only fed twice a week and are on the plump side of healthy. As i said if this happened over a few days he was either too thin to start with or has serious health problems. If he doesn't start eating in the next day or two i would get him checked by a vet. To be honest if he was mine i would take him straight away. Mel



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Old 10th February 2010   #11
Julia
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

I suspect the tank additive may be to blame. I think you are right to restart your tank. Put both your axolotl in the fridge, or somewhere cool. Do make sure the water is dechlorinated and changed daily. Offer food daily .....and keep us posted so we can assist....keep asking questions if neccessary.



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Old 10th February 2010   #12
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Red face Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

Thanks folks, I really appreciate the help. So far Morris still won't eat. Both of my little guys are in dechlorinated water in the fridge at about 10 degrees celsius.

Just cleared out the tank, and added new water. Going through my process very carefully to hopefully sort this out. I'm going to use Seachem's Stability, which is the first product I used when I first got my axies, and the best as far as I can tell. I had been using Prime, but it doesn't seem to contain the same bacteria etc.

Unless anyone can give me incontravertible proof why I shouldn't of course.

In the meantime though, has anyone seen gills the colour of my poor Morris'? Any suggestion what I may be able to do to treat him? It seems to be affecting his breathing.

I would take him to a vet but I've called several, and none of them have a clue about axolotls, full stop.



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Old 11th February 2010   #13
Leanne
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Post Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

reeceaduncan

the water could be making his gills like that because they are so sensitive........i have the phone number of a vet that treats axies in Mt Gravatt(if that is near you) they are very good.......the prime is good for getting rid of the chemicals and the stability is good for helping with the good bacteria(please correct me if im wrong) in the tank......you could add a air bubbler (helps to add oxygen to the water)to a esky and keep him that but you will have to keep the temp cold to help him pass the rocks if he has eaten some and watch out for white cotton wool stuff on his gills......

sorry that was a long winded reply..i hope it helps
lea



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Old 11th February 2010   #14
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Red face Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

So here's another update.

Took Morris out of the fridge this morning to find that his gills have gone back to their original orange colour. To be on the safe side I visited the aquarium (st kilda aquarium, who rock) and spoke to the guy who sold me the axies in the first place.

He suggested that it could be a bacterial issue. We've had some pretty hot weather and heat can cause a bacterial problem. So now I have some soluble antibiotics to help.I'm treating both of my axies just in case the other gets a dose of the same bacteria somehow. They do like to sit together a lot.

I'll keep you all updated!



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Old 17th February 2010   #15
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Default Re: Dark gills and trying to get out of the tank.

okay, so here we are about one week later and Morris is doing fine!

Turns out it was a bacterial infection after all. Seems likely that it was causing Morris to get distressed by reducing the amount of oxygen he could get. As a result he was gulping a lot and trying to get out of the tank.

The antibiotic that the guys at the Aquarium gave me worked a treat, and I put both of my axies in there for a few days to be sure they don't both get the same infection.

If I can find out the name of the antibiotic I'll post it. They said it was the strongest they could supply over the counter. Just a tablet that dissolves in water!

Very happy! will post a few pics for comparison in the next day or so!

Thanks to all for your suggestions. I''m not sure if the water clear solution contributed to the illness, but for the sake of argument I'm not using it anymore.

The bacterial infection was most likely caused by the hot weather here in the last few months. We've been getting 35+ celcius days for a week at a time down here. Only just started to get more reasonable weather for axies in the last few days.



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