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lateralline

Contents:

  1. lateral line disease (M)
    by laurence/cco.caltech.edu (Dustin Lee Laurence) (Tue, 21 Jan 1992)
  2. lateral line disease (M)
    by rob/rjck.UUCP (Robert J.C. Kyanko) (23 Jan 92)
  3. lateral line disease (M)
    by laurence/cco.caltech.edu (Dustin Lee Laurence) (Tue, 21 Jan 1992)
  4. lateral line disease (M)
    by rob/rjck.UUCP (Robert J.C. Kyanko) (23 Jan 92)

lateral line disease (M)

by laurence/cco.caltech.edu (Dustin Lee Laurence)
Date: Tue, 21 Jan 1992
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria

daleman-at-CCRS.EMR.CA (Paul Daleman) writes:

>  I have a blue surgeon (Paracanthurus hepatus) which I suspect is
>suffering from lateral line disease. I am looking for suggestions on how
>to treat this condition. The earlier books I have seen on this condition
>all have a different theory on causes/cures. I would like more up-to-date
>information and/or successful treatments used by net readers. 

Paul, I have a flame angel which is starting lateral line, so I've been
real interested in this question.  I have some info which might interest
you and the other readers, but I want to say in advance that so far I'm
long on theory and short on practice.  This is what I will be doing, but
I won't be able to tell you (all) how it works for me for some time.  If
there is enough interest, I'll try to remember to post in a few months
with a few results.

[...]

>I don't have any nitrate test kits, but judging from my underpopulated tank,
>monthly water changes and other healthy fish, the water quality is probably
>okay. I'd rather spend my money on salt than a test kit, and change the water a
>bit more often.

For what it's worth, I really don't like this idea.  I'd get a test kit
real soon.

>  Symptoms:
>When I purchased the fish it was about 3 inches long and had a few small
>patches of missing skin along the lateral line on each side. Now, seven months
>later, it has progressed somewhat, but only along the lateral line. During this

My version has head erosion, but no lateral line symptoms yet.  I'm told
that these are the same thing, but someone may know differently.  By the
way, why did you buy the fish if it already showed signs of trouble?

[...]

>the tank and considers itself king/queen?? ). It is also very hungry at
>feeding time, though it gets plenty of food.

My fish would eat themselves to death if I let them.

>I was feeding twice daily with dry pellets (Wardley) with a liquid vitamin
>supplement added as per instructions 3-4 times per week. Frozen greens
>(algae/spinach/peas/zucchini/vitamins/amino acids) were given
>3 times per week.

>As the lateral line problem progressed I began (about 3 months ago) to use
>the vitamin supplement at almost every feeding. The frozen greens were
>increased to once per day. This caused the fish to grow, but the lateral line
>problem worsened.

OK, now what I've been able to dig up.  This is from books, the mags,
a store owner whom I trust, and a phone call to John Tullock's store
for some confirmation.

The person at John's store feels that the onset of lateral line is
probably triggered by high nitrates.  The store owner I mentioned
concurs that nitrates are involved as well, although I think he feels
that there is more than just a trigger.  Either way, based on this
I'd pull them down as far as possible; perhaps some nitrate remover
in that Fluval would be best.  I have been using de*nitrate, and it
has worked well for me.  Until I use up the tests in this kit I have
and buy a better test, I can't say for sure how low they have gone.
Below the range of my current test, but that may not mean much.
Moral: never let a salesman sell you a dry-tab test for anything.

Second, I have heard from John Tullock's book and others that vitamin
deficiencies, especially vitamin C, are implicated.  I seem to remember
B-complex being a good idea as well, but I'm not sure where that came
from.  So I'd say keep up the vitamin supplement.  The person on the
phone recommended Selcon as the best, and Vita-Chem was supposed to be
good as well.  Also, I'm starting to feed sushi nori, but it sounds like
you have the greens department well under control.  For what it's worth,
try going to a variety of frozen foods instead of the pellets.  I
believe that more nutrients survive this way.  Pellets are said to be
better than flakes in terms of tank pollution, though.  I'd go with
frozen plus a little pellet for supplement, and get as much variety as
possible.

Third, on a related note, the person at Tullock's store also said that
they had better results treating fish in tanks with lots of full spectrum
lighting.  He thought that they synthesized important vitamins in their
skin (like we do), and that this helped quite a bit with lateral line.
Since most such tanks would be reef tanks, it's also possible that he was
deceived by the generally better water conditions in reefs, but that's
pure speculation on my part.  I'd be inclined to believe him, not me.
Anyway, you might want to put another bulb or two over your tank with
full spectrum bulbs, if your lighting is a bit dim.

Fourth, Julian Sprung and John Tullock have both mentioned that tanks can
build up an electric potential (from pumps and whatnot) which they feel is
not only to lateral line, but can also produce unusually nervous fish.  I
tested my water (using a pocket multimeter on AC volts with a probe in the
wall ground and a probe in the water) and measured a bit over 32V!  No
wonder the fisheri angel is a bit twitchy, not to mention the lateral line
problems.

This subject was the main reason I called Tullock's store.  Sandpoint has
just started selling a "Solution Ground" which will ground your tank to
the wall ground.  I was assured that there are no extra tricks involved
(as I assumed), and so rather than pay $35 or more I'm grounding the tank
myself.  DON'T USE COPPER WIRE.  Most of you don't need the reminder, of
course.  Thiel claims that the only two marine-safe metals are titanium
and SS 316 (a grade of stainless steel).  Naturally, gold and platnium
are probably safe as well, but that has to be the most expensive route.

I couldn't locate any titanium, but I did find out that it is easy to get
1/16" welding rod in SS 316.  This has the added benefit that even in small
towns you ought to be able to get or order welding supplies.  I don't know
if this is an international designation, so it's possible that it's called
something different outside the US.  Perhaps someone else can comment on
this?  In any event, I will be connecting this to the wall ground in the
next day or two.

The store person had a couple of interesting stories.  There was a tank
he serviced which would give him a small shock if he had a cut or
hangnail, but not otherwise.  That tank measured at 65V!  (By the way, the
currents on these things seem to be very, very low, so electrocution is
not a problem.)  The highest tank potential he'd heard of was 100V.
Nice, huh?

Now, I've been told that you can stop lateral line disease (we probably
should be calling this syndrome), but you can't reverse the skin
degeneration.  But this guy at Tullock's place says that they have seen
improvement in fish that were treated with all of these methods.  It's
at least some hope of really getting the better of this thing.

Finally, I told this story to a friend who used to be a freshwater
breeder.  He said that the old man who taught him to keep fish used to
say "Son, keep your fish happy.  Ground your tank."  Hmm, does that mean
that for twenty years there have been people out there who have known
about this sort of thing and us peons are just finding out now?  It also
means that freshwater tanks would probably benefit from this technique as
well.  Do FW fish get lateral line?  I wouldn't know.

Well, that's the story I've been hearing.  I'd be very interested to hear
comments from those of you with more experience, and I'd love to hear
some results if anyone else tries these ideas.

>-- Thank you muchly,    Paul Daleman --

Your muchly welcome,

-- 
Dustin                                 "I realize that I'm destroying your
                                       character, but I'm very pleased with his
laurence-at-alice.wonderland.caltech.edu  personal development on the way down."
                                                              -- Mark Kreitler

Now I would add to this that there is some evidence that the use of
activated carbon, or too much granular activated carbon (GAC), can be
a factor.  This theory seems to be especially popular with professional
aquarists at the moment.

One idea of how carbon could cause/aggravate lateral line is that it
removes some essential trace element.  Now, this could be, but no one
knows--anyone who says that this is the Word of God is either selling
something or has unwarranted confidence in their own ability to guess.

I think that if GAC turns out to be a factor, we are more likely to
find that it leaches something nasty, probably from the manufacturing
process.  I hope to do more checking on this sometime, but in the
mean time, I thought it would be good to bring the above post up to
date.

Dustin, 7/27/93




lateral line disease (M)

by rob/rjck.UUCP (Robert J.C. Kyanko)
Date: 23 Jan 92
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria

daleman-at-CCRS.EMR.CA (Paul Daleman) writes:
> 
> As the lateral line problem progressed I began (about 3 months ago) to use
> the vitamin supplement at almost every feeding. The frozen greens were
> increased to once per day. This caused the fish to grow, but the lateral line
> problem worsened.
> 
> Any help would be appreciated. Is my diagnosis correct? Can you recommend a
> treatment? Have I provided the correct information? If someone is really
> worried about the water quality I will buy a test kit and report back.

I have a sailfin tang (brown with yellow tail), that has lateral line
disease as well.  I pretty much tried the same things you are without any
success, until I examined my nitrate levels.  My setup is a little different
than yours, but I did 30% water changes monthly and my nitrates were over 
50ppm.  The real cause to my problem was probably overfeeding (so easy to
do), and thus nitrates were allowed to rise over a period of 6 months.

Please DO buy a nitrate test kit, and find out if your problem is the same.
Many of the tangs and angels are very sensitive to high nitrate levels.
When I mean high, I'm talking about > 15ppm.  My personal opinion is that
lateral line is caused by stress in general -- stress caused by poor water
quality, poor nutrition, and problems with tank inhabitants.  But the first
is probably the most important.
                                 -Rob

-----------
I am not responsible for anything I do or say -- I'm just an opinion.
             Robert J.C. Kyanko (rob-at-rjck.UUCP)


lateral line disease (M)

by laurence/cco.caltech.edu (Dustin Lee Laurence)
Date: Tue, 21 Jan 1992
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria

daleman-at-CCRS.EMR.CA (Paul Daleman) writes:

>  I have a blue surgeon (Paracanthurus hepatus) which I suspect is
>suffering from lateral line disease. I am looking for suggestions on how
>to treat this condition. The earlier books I have seen on this condition
>all have a different theory on causes/cures. I would like more up-to-date
>information and/or successful treatments used by net readers. 

Paul, I have a flame angel which is starting lateral line, so I've been
real interested in this question.  I have some info which might interest
you and the other readers, but I want to say in advance that so far I'm
long on theory and short on practice.  This is what I will be doing, but
I won't be able to tell you (all) how it works for me for some time.  If
there is enough interest, I'll try to remember to post in a few months
with a few results.

[...]

>I don't have any nitrate test kits, but judging from my underpopulated tank,
>monthly water changes and other healthy fish, the water quality is probably
>okay. I'd rather spend my money on salt than a test kit, and change the water a
>bit more often.

For what it's worth, I really don't like this idea.  I'd get a test kit
real soon.

>  Symptoms:
>When I purchased the fish it was about 3 inches long and had a few small
>patches of missing skin along the lateral line on each side. Now, seven months
>later, it has progressed somewhat, but only along the lateral line. During this

My version has head erosion, but no lateral line symptoms yet.  I'm told
that these are the same thing, but someone may know differently.  By the
way, why did you buy the fish if it already showed signs of trouble?

[...]

>the tank and considers itself king/queen?? ). It is also very hungry at
>feeding time, though it gets plenty of food.

My fish would eat themselves to death if I let them.

>I was feeding twice daily with dry pellets (Wardley) with a liquid vitamin
>supplement added as per instructions 3-4 times per week. Frozen greens
>(algae/spinach/peas/zucchini/vitamins/amino acids) were given
>3 times per week.

>As the lateral line problem progressed I began (about 3 months ago) to use
>the vitamin supplement at almost every feeding. The frozen greens were
>increased to once per day. This caused the fish to grow, but the lateral line
>problem worsened.

OK, now what I've been able to dig up.  This is from books, the mags,
a store owner whom I trust, and a phone call to John Tullock's store
for some confirmation.

The person at John's store feels that the onset of lateral line is
probably triggered by high nitrates.  The store owner I mentioned
concurs that nitrates are involved as well, although I think he feels
that there is more than just a trigger.  Either way, based on this
I'd pull them down as far as possible; perhaps some nitrate remover
in that Fluval would be best.  I have been using de*nitrate, and it
has worked well for me.  Until I use up the tests in this kit I have
and buy a better test, I can't say for sure how low they have gone.
Below the range of my current test, but that may not mean much.
Moral: never let a salesman sell you a dry-tab test for anything.

Second, I have heard from John Tullock's book and others that vitamin
deficiencies, especially vitamin C, are implicated.  I seem to remember
B-complex being a good idea as well, but I'm not sure where that came
from.  So I'd say keep up the vitamin supplement.  The person on the
phone recommended Selcon as the best, and Vita-Chem was supposed to be
good as well.  Also, I'm starting to feed sushi nori, but it sounds like
you have the greens department well under control.  For what it's worth,
try going to a variety of frozen foods instead of the pellets.  I
believe that more nutrients survive this way.  Pellets are said to be
better than flakes in terms of tank pollution, though.  I'd go with
frozen plus a little pellet for supplement, and get as much variety as
possible.

Third, on a related note, the person at Tullock's store also said that
they had better results treating fish in tanks with lots of full spectrum
lighting.  He thought that they synthesized important vitamins in their
skin (like we do), and that this helped quite a bit with lateral line.
Since most such tanks would be reef tanks, it's also possible that he was
deceived by the generally better water conditions in reefs, but that's
pure speculation on my part.  I'd be inclined to believe him, not me.
Anyway, you might want to put another bulb or two over your tank with
full spectrum bulbs, if your lighting is a bit dim.

Fourth, Julian Sprung and John Tullock have both mentioned that tanks can
build up an electric potential (from pumps and whatnot) which they feel is
not only to lateral line, but can also produce unusually nervous fish.  I
tested my water (using a pocket multimeter on AC volts with a probe in the
wall ground and a probe in the water) and measured a bit over 32V!  No
wonder the fisheri angel is a bit twitchy, not to mention the lateral line
problems.

This subject was the main reason I called Tullock's store.  Sandpoint has
just started selling a "Solution Ground" which will ground your tank to
the wall ground.  I was assured that there are no extra tricks involved
(as I assumed), and so rather than pay $35 or more I'm grounding the tank
myself.  DON'T USE COPPER WIRE.  Most of you don't need the reminder, of
course.  Thiel claims that the only two marine-safe metals are titanium
and SS 316 (a grade of stainless steel).  Naturally, gold and platnium
are probably safe as well, but that has to be the most expensive route.

I couldn't locate any titanium, but I did find out that it is easy to get
1/16" welding rod in SS 316.  This has the added benefit that even in small
towns you ought to be able to get or order welding supplies.  I don't know
if this is an international designation, so it's possible that it's called
something different outside the US.  Perhaps someone else can comment on
this?  In any event, I will be connecting this to the wall ground in the
next day or two.

The store person had a couple of interesting stories.  There was a tank
he serviced which would give him a small shock if he had a cut or
hangnail, but not otherwise.  That tank measured at 65V!  (By the way, the
currents on these things seem to be very, very low, so electrocution is
not a problem.)  The highest tank potential he'd heard of was 100V.
Nice, huh?

Now, I've been told that you can stop lateral line disease (we probably
should be calling this syndrome), but you can't reverse the skin
degeneration.  But this guy at Tullock's place says that they have seen
improvement in fish that were treated with all of these methods.  It's
at least some hope of really getting the better of this thing.

Finally, I told this story to a friend who used to be a freshwater
breeder.  He said that the old man who taught him to keep fish used to
say "Son, keep your fish happy.  Ground your tank."  Hmm, does that mean
that for twenty years there have been people out there who have known
about this sort of thing and us peons are just finding out now?  It also
means that freshwater tanks would probably benefit from this technique as
well.  Do FW fish get lateral line?  I wouldn't know.

Well, that's the story I've been hearing.  I'd be very interested to hear
comments from those of you with more experience, and I'd love to hear
some results if anyone else tries these ideas.

>-- Thank you muchly,    Paul Daleman --

Your muchly welcome,

-- 
Dustin                                 "I realize that I'm destroying your
                                       character, but I'm very pleased with his
laurence-at-alice.wonderland.caltech.edu  personal development on the way down."
                                                              -- Mark Kreitler


lateral line disease (M)

by rob/rjck.UUCP (Robert J.C. Kyanko)
Date: 23 Jan 92
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria

daleman-at-CCRS.EMR.CA (Paul Daleman) writes:
> 
> As the lateral line problem progressed I began (about 3 months ago) to use
> the vitamin supplement at almost every feeding. The frozen greens were
> increased to once per day. This caused the fish to grow, but the lateral line
> problem worsened.
> 
> Any help would be appreciated. Is my diagnosis correct? Can you recommend a
> treatment? Have I provided the correct information? If someone is really
> worried about the water quality I will buy a test kit and report back.

I have a sailfin tang (brown with yellow tail), that has lateral line
disease as well.  I pretty much tried the same things you are without any
success, until I examined my nitrate levels.  My setup is a little different
than yours, but I did 30% water changes monthly and my nitrates were over 
50ppm.  The real cause to my problem was probably overfeeding (so easy to
do), and thus nitrates were allowed to rise over a period of 6 months.

Please DO buy a nitrate test kit, and find out if your problem is the same.
Many of the tangs and angels are very sensitive to high nitrate levels.
When I mean high, I'm talking about > 15ppm.  My personal opinion is that
lateral line is caused by stress in general -- stress caused by poor water
quality, poor nutrition, and problems with tank inhabitants.  But the first
is probably the most important.
                                 -Rob

-----------
I am not responsible for anything I do or say -- I'm just an opinion.
             Robert J.C. Kyanko (rob-at-rjck.UUCP)


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