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Black Fungus (definitely not BBA) and Fin-rot


Sapere_Ceta
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A few days ago, Grume developed a few small pinholes, maybe 1-2 of them, which I figured could be from his consistent clumsiness. However, two days later (yesterday), they were worsening. Today, I noticed thin white strings on his fins, though they’ve since fallen off from his wiggles. There are no behavioral changes, signs of stress, or anything similar, thankfully. 

 

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I preformed a 40% water change, and noticed that the black spore-like dots on my driftwood now has a black jellyfish-looking fungus on it, growing on the underside.
I plucked off the emerged fungus I could spot off of the driftwood. After, I added a dose of Kanaplex, which I’ll continue with, as per the instructions. 

Grume has handled Kanaplex well in the past, when I first quarantined with it as part of his Quarantine medications, so I opted to use this, instead of trying to wait for a medication to arrive by mail (although I ordered Maracyn just in case), since I’m 90% bedridden and am unable to leave the house and drive. 

 

My worry, which is why I’m creating this post, is about the black spores. They’re solid, they withstood multiple boilings, and since they’re now suddenly erupting with the fungus, I’m unsure if the Kanaplex would actually be able to go through the spores’ shelling. 

I have a photo of a younger looking fungus I missed, although it’s dark and difficult to see it. I’ve been plucking these off, and they’re squishy, float, and anchor to the wood extremely strongly. 

Given the state of the driftwood, would it be better to scrap it, once I finish the Kanaplex doses? Or, is there a different approach. 

 

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I suspect this could have resulted from a light change, as my Finnex light broke and the Fluval light I ordered was much darker, which triggered a large algae bloom as well. Perhaps the fungal spores responded to the light change, ending their dormancy. I’ve since added a new Finnex light yesterday.

 

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Edited by Sapere_Ceta
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I’m not a med person but I had the spikes tiny black spores on some of my manzanita. They never grew or did anything I took it out hit it with peroxide wiped it off put it back in and they grew back. I never found out what it was but it never hurt anything. I eventually replaced the manzanita which sat in a drawer for a few months. Put it back in another tank and never seen them again. This isn’t much help other than to say those black spikes things may be unrelated. Best of luck. 

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On 1/29/2022 at 3:06 PM, Guppysnail said:

This isn’t much help other than to say those black spikes things may be unrelated. Best of luck. 

No worries. It’s definitely possible it could be unrelated. I’ve had them for over a year now, and they haven’t done anything, but there’s been that weird spongey black fungus growing suddenly, and they’re also attached to the driftwood, like the black dots are.

So, I’m not sure if they happen to be related or not. I do know though that there’s a lot more black dots than there were lately, and some of them are getting somewhat elongated now. Really strange.

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I’ve just noticed that the black dots have spread to parts of the rocks. I’ve never had that issue before in my last scape with this driftwood (even when they did have the black dots). I think maybe it would be better to replace the wood at this point.

Though, now I’m worried I’ll never be able to get rid of them, since they’re on the rocks now too. 

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You could try spot treating it with seachems excel or co-op easy carbon that might do the trick   your Betta's   the hole's in his fin can be caused by your Betta fairing  and tears start to develop in his fins as you have treated with kanaplex  I would just add some Indian almond leaves as they have antibacterial and antifungal properties to help  speed up the healing process

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On 1/30/2022 at 2:25 PM, Colu said:

You could try spot treating it with seachems excel or co-op easy carbon that might do the trick   your Betta's   the hole's in his fin can be caused by your Betta fairing  and tears start to develop in his fins as you have treated with kanaplex  I would just add some Indian almond leaves as they have antibacterial and antifungal properties to help  speed up the healing process

I have spot treated easy carbon, and later excel, in the past to no avail (I had this with my previous scape too, and boiling them didn’t work either), though now it’s all been worsening, and then the weird spongy black fungus started this week. 

My betta doesn't flare unless I have a red object near him, funny enough. I wondered if he maybe got caught between a rock or driftwood, because he’s done it before, but that didn’t seem to be the case either.

Indian almond leaves would be a good idea. I don’t have any, though I do have leaves I’ve collected in the past stashed away. They aren’t as beneficial as Indian almond leaves, but a small added benefit is still a benefit nonetheless.

So far, I haven’t seen worsening in the fin-rot. There’s one small semi-white string I do see on one of his fins, but the other strings seemed to be shaken off fully when he comes over to beg for food. 

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The fin-rot hasn’t worsened, so the Kanaplex seems to be working as hoped / expected. The water is cloudy, but that isn’t surprising. 

I ordered new driftwood. I have a theory that could be incorrect, but the theory is that this driftwood is rotting at a faster rate, and perhaps that’s why it’s developing the fungus that is worsening, and perhaps that’s maybe affecting the water quality beyond what I can test. 

I have an oddly whopping amount of snails, with not much decaying plant matter, only one fish that I tong-feed, nothing showing up on the tests I can preform in the water, a regularly maintained aquarium etc. If the driftwood is rotting more rapidly, maybe that’s why I’ve had an extreme amount I can’t get a handle on.

They breed to the point where many keep starving and nibble on definitely healthy leaves, over and over again. Maybe the driftwood is leaching this organic matter and rotting away quickly, and that triggers significant reproduction that increases over time, but the snails aren’t able to consume much. 

Just a thought, I could be wrong of course. But, it could explain why there are a few things that all are happening together, without other connected or separate explanations I can find. (the fungus and black dots on the driftwood, the snail population, and how Grume could develop fin-rot). 

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On 1/31/2022 at 2:16 PM, Colu said:

It possible some type of wood do break down more quickly in tanks I use bogwood and manzanita wood some pieces of bogwood I have had for years no problems the Manzanita wood started to rot after a year it didn't develope fungus the black fungus is more then likely feeding of the wood breaking it down

Yeah, that would be my guess as well. I’m going to try Amazon Wood, which I've heard good things about. If it were just the black sore-looking things, it would be an eyesore, but a tolerable one. Though this spongey fungus is really odd and gross. I lightly squeezed one of them with tongs, when I placed it into a bucket, while I was water changing and extracting them off of the driftwood, and it gushed out tiny white particles everywhere. 

I can’t imagine what it would be like if that were to get into the water, and maybe some already has before I did that water change,  though that’s unknown to me. So, replacing the driftwood is definitely the safest approach. 

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On 1/31/2022 at 6:37 PM, Colu said:

I haven't had anything like this in my tanks If it releasing spores into the aquarium it will be difficult to eradicate from your tank if your have a UV steriliser that should kill the spores and stop them from spreading 

Yeah, it’s really strange. I really would like to get a UV sterilizer at some point. I’ll have to look online and see if I can get a good quality UV sterilizer without breaking the bank. 
 

In the meantime, I’m considering draining the tank down when I get the new driftwood, wrap the plants and keep them wet enough (the aquarium is right behind where I am on the couch, and I am often unable to sleep much, so it’s easier for me to assure they’ll stay well saturated while being buried in the substrate still). I could set up a temporary tub setup for Grume, remove the driftwood, let the rocks dry out and target them with hydrogen peroxide potentially, if I do it carefully. 

If there were spores released in the tank, not just when I squeezed them after their removal in a bucket, they would still be present in the aquarium, on the plants, in the substrate, etc. But, maybe if the amount is reduced, the driftwood is changed, I could keep it from becoming widespread until a UV sterilizer was added. I’m unsure if the Kanaplex would kill any spores. 

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On 2/1/2022 at 5:17 AM, Colu said:

I don't think kanaplex would have any effect on fungal spores the spores would more than likely attach to any decaying wood I would just remove the wood and treat any remaining fungus with a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution hopefully that will do the trick

I think that is the best approach too, so hopefully all goes well. The new wood will be here in a few days, so I’ll be to hopefully tackle it soon.

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