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  1. #1
    AC Members
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    Jan 2003
    Warwick, RI
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    04-03-2007 9:50 PM

    Oscar's Skin Looks Like It's Peeling Off - HELP!

    Earlier today I go to feed my Oscar and his skin looks as if its just peeling off. There is all white stuff on his body, on and around his eyes, and on his fins. He is currently in a 150 gallon tank with a 2-3 inch jack dempsy. The oscar is about 5-7 inches. Just now I went to show my mother him and I noticed that the thermometer was broken in half and one half of it was in the gravel. There was a whole dug out where it was in the gravel. Is the mercury dangerous for the fish? Could he have been trying to eat it or something? What is wrong with him, and is it possible to treat? Tomorrow I plan to have pictures.

    Also, this tank used to have my convict in it that had pop eye about a month or 2 ago, but I removed her once I noticed it and tried to treat her in a 10 gallon and she later died.

  2. #2
    Fishmaster Flash
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    May 2004
    Northern California
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    03-08-2005 8:45 PM
    I'm really sorry to hear about this! I didn't know they sold glass mercury thermometers anymore, much less at petstores!

    Either way, mercury is no good for any living thing... but you also need to be very careful when cleaning it yourself. Unfortunately, no mercury contamination can be tolerated. You'll need to pitch your substrate and empty your tank.. I don't know what local procedures are for disposing of mercury contaminated water. Contact your local hazmat guys. Don't flush the water down the drain though!
    See if you can find temporary home for your fish. Wear gloves when handling the contaminated water and dispose of them with the substrate. Mercury poisoning usually cannot be cured for fish or wildlife. For humans they usually pump the stomach full of milk. The stuff is a nasty neurotoxin and is readily absorbed by the intestines.

    Make sure it was mercury before you bother with any of this. I don't mean to sound didactic, or demean you in any way, but I'm just making sure. If it was a red liquid it was just dyed ethanol or methanol.

    Any effect on the JD?
    Last edited by brendanh; 05-27-2004 at 11:03 PM.

  3. #3
    Cichlid Fan Harry Tolen's Avatar
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    Aug 2000
    Union, WA, USA
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    04-12-2007 12:00 AM
    I agree with brendanh. Before completely breaking down your tank, just do a few major water changes over the next few days and see how things develop. It was most likely not mercury in your thermometer.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
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    Feb 2004
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    02-06-2006 9:05 PM
    I to have a oscar and up to 2 days ago I had 2, 1 albino and 1 Tiger . Male and female. My albino who I lost 2 days ago to Popeye went through several periods of time where she was also haveing the same skin peeling problems as yours. She would clear up about a week or so later. My thinking is maybe it is a groth stage simaler to a snake shedding there skin. but I am not sure. As for my Tigar Oscar (Bruce) he has never showed signs of skin peeling. As for your thermomiter problem I also had broblems with mine. Bruce did not like the thing every night when I turned out the light I could here a real loud taping sound come from his tank. He was tapping the Thermomiter on the glass he endded up breaking it. My advice to you is get one of the Stick on thermomiter that goes on the out side of the tank. That will salve that proplem. Oscars for some reason do not like Thermomiters.

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