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Worried about my juvie Jack Dempsey

Discussion in 'Cichlids' started by Fozzybear, Mar 12, 2012.

  1. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    Hey, so I got jack about 3 or 4 weeks ago, I've been wanting to get a JD for some time and saw these great little guys at a really trustworthy LFS and decided to take the opportunity to nab him. So, He's been coloring up nicely and filling out as well, great big apatite for all kinds of food. After my Sat water change the little guy has been looking a little downer, hanging out low in the tank and just been really mellow, I'm wary of feeding him too much but he's had a muted response to food...maybe i'm just seeing that. Anyways here are the specs.

    Tank: 10g (don't worry he's only 1.5" at this point and i have a 20h and 40b currently I just don't want to have to put up that size of tank yet)
    Filters: Aqueon 20g HOB, marineland 10g in tank stuffed with foam
    Heater: 50w something or another
    Lights: 2x 6700k 48" t8s split between 2 10gs
    Substrate: Mixed black sand and #3 gravel arpox 1.5" depth
    Temp: 78 degrees
    NH3/NH3: 0 ppm
    Nitrites: 0 ppm
    pH: 7.4


    When I got him I treated him with garlic additive both to the water and food for 1 week for parasites.

    Here are some photos:

    When i first got him:
    IMG_20120226_222209.jpg

    Saturday:
    2012-03-10_18-17-45_613.jpg

    And present:
    IMG_20120312_194726.jpg
    IMG_20120312_194719.jpg



    Here are the tests:
    IMG_20120312_194625.jpg
    IMG_20120312_194526.jpg
    IMG_20120312_194449.jpg


    Now, I know JDs are known for being moody and i did just plant a few crypts in the tank after he had established his territory, please tell me he's just pouting?
     
  2. teigan666

    teigan666 AC Members

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    you got yourself an electric blue jd my friend and i'd just say he's being moody cause you changed his tank after he set up his area lol my regular jd goes black if i mess with anything in his tank
     
  3. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    yeah...it was either the EBJD or the Tiger Oscar for this role...and frankly I'd never been that smitten with the EBJD until I saw this particular guy...his greens are great when he's feeling cocky, knocks my socks off
     
  4. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    I'm still a little worried about Jack, I checked all the params today and his water is still perfect but he's still being grumpy. Should i be thinking about medicating him? I really don't want to loose this fish, if for no other reason than he was very expensive
     
  5. aviva90

    aviva90 AC Members

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    Never medicate unless you know there is a reason to, this will do more harm than good. He is probably just a relaxed personality. If he has his territory set up than he's just chillin' probably. And maybe still upset you re-arranged his tank after finding a territory. Give him a couple days to get over this, I know my parrots would pout for days if I changed anything.
     
  6. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    ugh...just makes me nervous to "wait and see" with a $60 fish >.< I know, I know, I need to be patient and trust the tests...fish in clean water living by themselves can't get sick from THAT many things...I guess...:uhoh:If this is how moody these fish can be I'm quite shocked, 3 days ago he was perking up and greeting me when i came in and happily racing to the food corner if I touched his tank...now he wont even turn around and look at me when he's 3" from the glass and 4" from my face :shakehead:
     
  7. aviva90

    aviva90 AC Members

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    I feel ya!1 But it really is in the best interest to wait.
    My angel is very much the same way, he will go WEEKS where he is being a picky earter (when he will only accept live worms and frozen brine shrimp) and hide in the corner when I come to the tank; and then I'll do a water change or do something small like remove some algae and he'll be his "old" happy self eating flakes and greeting me eagerly. I don't know why he's a grump sometimes, or what snaps him out of it but for this reason I dubbed him "Mr. Grumpyface". Cichlids really are a lot more "high thinking" than some like schooling fish. Maybe your fish has a "trigger" that will get him acting like his old self. Keep an eye out for serious change, but if he's being picky and "anti-human" he's probably just having a tantrum, I feel this is what is happening, because it's similar to how my parrots and angels acted (and EBJDs, angels, and parrots are all cichlids so would have some similar traits).
    They really can be that moody, it really is crazy...
     
  8. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    I've got multies and a couple angels and my wife as two Bolivians so I've got some experience with cichilds...I'm used to the bright faces and intelligent responsive behavior, but I got the JD because I'd read that they have a personality that goes above and beyond...i guess this is it huh?

    Side note: I finally caught him with a BM and it was normally size/texture except kindof a cream color (definitely not stringy at all, it passed completely normally) I'm guessing that the color is from the fasting from the last couple days and the fact that the last thing he ate with any vigor were frozen mysis shrimp which are that exact creamish color...thoughts?
     
  9. vwill279

    vwill279 AC Members

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    Try feeding him some live food. After a few blackworms, all my fish perk up for a while. He may just be bored and want something to hunt.
     
  10. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    So, Jack still has me a little stressed, I got some flightless fruit flies and superworms and he refused them, also refused his favorite NLS pellet. Watched him through the morning and he was actually only getting worse, not just moody but blanched out on his belly and actually swimming somewhat poorly. The closest thing I can think of is that A: I fed him some zucchini to see what his response to veggies was and he hates the smell, I fed it on Saturday, or B:I got some form of toxic chemical in his tank on my hands, so I went ahead and did a 80% WC (he started perking up as soon as i started vacuuming for some ridiculous reason) and by the time I was done filling his colors were much deeper in his belly and his swimming had drastically improved, no longer kindof stumbling along so to speak but making quick deliberate motions. He also started to hang out near the surface and kind of pant, once I got done filling (10min max from opening the hood) he returned to his original cave he'd chosen when i first got him and went back to what i would say is default behavior for this fish. So I've added activated carbon to his filter (i normally don't use it) and an air stone in case oxygenation is an issue here (although his tank has more surface agitation than many other tanks with much heavier stocking). I've been very careful to stay aware of the fact that he may just be stressed, but at the same time I'm not completely new to intelligent fish and their tantrums and can't get past the concept that a fish showing his level of behavior isn't simply grouchy but is actually feeling something. Also, I know that at his whopping 1.5" a 10g is plenty room for him to be comfortable, and chemically his water is 100% sound, but could this be that he just needs more room to move? If it seems like tank size is the issue here please say so, I've got no problem getting him in something larger, in fact something larger is sitting in my shop right now...i just don't want to deal with another big tank right yet...and the 10gs match each other.
     
  11. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    I think I may have a handle on the situation at this point. Jack is completely back to his old self, happily greeting me, searching for food and has waxed off the fruit flies that were still walking around on the water. He immediately perked up and continued to do so since my last post. After changing the water etc. I ran down to my LFS and had a chat with their good cichlid guy, he was allot of help and after discussing what may possibly be going on we basically narrowed it down to the only possible cause, in his opinion, being constipation. So, at this point the plan is to fast him for tomorrow and feed once lightly the night after and see if he's into food again (although since he's snitching left over FFs i'm sure he is). Now, I may just be seeing things and there may be no correlation here at all, but, after I came home I set up to watch him for a while. During that time he was still somewhat pale around his belly but swimming much better, finally caught his second BM since this all started that I've seen and it was normally formed, not stringy, but huge...his belly immediately darkened back up the rest of the way and we're off to the races. Now...I know that there are a few variables at play here.
    I've done the following:
    -Added an airstone
    -Added activated carbon
    -Did a large WC with 1degree colder water (dropped temp from 78 to 77)
    -He had a large poo
    Result? he's happy now.

    Please I'm really trying to get a solid handle on this fish, what do ya'll think was going on? toxins in the water? constipation? grumpy? I'd like to be able to hone in on which of the things may have been effective or whether this is a combination of issues?

    P.S. He really did go pretty nuts on the Mysis shrimp right before this happened not a huge feeding but definitely the strongest feeding reaction I've seen out of him yet.
     
    #11 Fozzybear, Mar 15, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2012
  12. aviva90

    aviva90 AC Members

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    To be honest it probably isn't one simple answer, probably a combination of things, like he ate food he liked, and he may have been constipated and now feels better, and the large water change probably all helped him out and made him more happy. Glad to hear he's feeling better
     
  13. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    Yeah, biology has this funny way of never taking the simple answer...I'll be keeping a close eye on him still and will see if anything else develops. Also, any of you old pro's have a trick that I'm missing? I'm I doing anything pointless? I'd love to figure out a good bag of tricks for this type of deal.
     
  14. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    Little bugger is acting funny again. Not quite so blanched out as he was, but still not spending allot of time swimming or showing full color, still very little food response. He's just kind of hanging out under the wood and anubias all day, I'm not quite quite convinced that he's actually sick right now. This level of behavior may just be grumpy but I'm not sure. He's no longer having trouble swimming like he was, but still doesn't quite seem to feel like it. Anyways, today is when I do all my WCs so I think I'm going to do his as usual and see if that effects his behavior (he's really perked up at the last two changes) and I'm wondering if I should trade him and my angels spots for a couple days and see if it has a change on either of their behavior. If there is something going on with Jack's tank that i can't get to show up on tests then they angels should show Jack's symptoms and Jack should perk up in the 50. BUT, if Jack is just angry and stressed then that would seem to me the worst possible solution. MG, Jinkzd, Jeta, RB? any of you pros want to weigh in? please? :1zhelp:
     
  15. jetajockey

    jetajockey AC Members

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    Actually with EBJD's its common practice to pre-treat for internal parasites since they are so prone to them. I've had good results with jungle parasite clear, which has both prazi and metro in it. I treated mine once when I first got him and haven't had any issues since. As far as the mood goes, it could be a number of things, mine is very timid and still doesn't come out when people are at the tank. As long as he is eating well and not showing any other symptoms I would just wait and see.
     
  16. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    thanks allot dude. I may look into that med since I haven't dosed him yet and he's in a tank all by himself so, its relatively easy.
     
  17. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    Okay, well, jack is eating, vigorously, and just hung out with me for a solid 10 minutes begging, and uh lets see...what else, oh yeah, he's currently got about a 1/2" stringy white poo hanging out of his butt. I mean its big and gross and I'm pretty sure its some sort of dead worm. I got Jack onto API's General Cure, and I'm thinking Jack may have been dealing with tapeworm. Anyways, the last couple days of medication have been interesting, Jack's health took a really hard spike down when I first dosed and I really thought I'd screwed the pooch but he's been perking up every time he passes a worm. Also, today is the first time I've had him eating now since I started fasting him at that last post. Hopefully I'll be posting again here in a couple days that I've finished the meds and he's 100% and back to his perky happy old self, I have a feeling he will and am ready to be done with this period. Glad it looks like I'll be keeping him around for a minute.


    Question: Do you think dead/sick parasites cause fish more discomfort than live healthy ones or the other way around? I've notice Jack has really had a negative reaction to garlic every time I've dosed it and had the initial negative reaction to the meds...I'm wondering if the parasites not liking things or dying was what was giving him some of the more acute symptoms? i.e. having to now pass a large dead worm hurting his belly?
     
  18. jetajockey

    jetajockey AC Members

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    I don't know what is in that 'general cure' treatment. If it has antibiotics in it, that could explain some behavior changes, since some fish stress in reaction to some of that stuff.

    Metro/prazi has always done the trick for me, and I would still use it even now if you still see stringy poo and if that general cure doesn't have those meds in it.
     
  19. Fozzybear

    Fozzybear wocka wocka wocka!

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    the general cure is 250mg metronidazole and 75mg Praziquantel per 10g dose. You dose once, let it sit for 48 hrs, dose again and let it sit for 48 hrs, then 25% WC and add activated carbon. I went to my LFS looking for the jungle parasite clear but they don't stock it so I got their top shelf stuff that had the same active ingredients. Jack again greeted me when I came into the office tonight just before lights out and was actually begging again and starting to really look like he's gonna make the turn on this one. Thank you David, seriously :bowing:
     
  20. jetajockey

    jetajockey AC Members

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    That stuff sounds fine, I'd just keep on with it. It sounds like he's coming around so hope he pulls through.
     

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