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Zebra Danios - Isolate, Stop Eating, & Die


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I’ve had some fish deaths and wonder if anyone more experienced has some insight on what, if anything, I should do. 


I have 5 zebra danios left in a 10 gallon. The tank has been running since January and has seemed pretty stable. I test weekly using the co-op test strips and do water changes as needed, which hasn’t been often of late. Ammonia and nitrites have always been 0 the last several months. The tank is planted, and I use the easy green fertilizer once a week. 


I’ve lost 4 zebra danios since I started the tank in January. They all do the same thing - start hiding by themselves, eventually quit eating and finally pass on. One at a time, spaced weeks or even months apart. They were always the small ones that never seemed to grow at the rate of the others. These are PetCo fish. 


When I added my last 3 zebra danios the end of June, I went ahead and did a course of paracleanse according to the directions on the co-op web site (as opposed to those on the box). All fish seemed healthy and active for a while, and just a few days ago (so almost 3 months later) I lost another one in the same way as described above, dropping me to 5. The remaining 5 are active, eating well, and generally look good.


I do not have a quarantine tank, but none of the remaining danios in the 10 gallon look or act sick. I do have the 3 quarantine meds the coop recommends but have only done the round of paracleanse almost 3 months ago now. Does this strike a bell with anyone? “Oh, that’s usually -some issue-, treat with -this medicine-“? It’s odd to me that it only hits one at a time so far apart. But it keeps happening, so it also seems like it must be something. 


Here’s the thing… I really want to order some shrimp before it’s too cold to do so. I’d like to move these zebra danios from the 10 gallon into my 29 gallon which also has zebra danios, giving me a dedicated shrimp tank in the 10 gallon. But I don’t want to introduce any issues to the 29 gallon, which is my favorite tank. It currently houses 5 zebra danios, 2 skirt tetras, and 2 clown plecos. 


I could pick up a 10 gallon to make a temporary quarantine tank to hit the danios with all 3 meds before moving them so I could go ahead and order the shrimp, but I don’t have a seasoned filter to put in it. I have an extra filter, just not a seasoned one. 


Also, I assume the fish issues would not translate to the shrimp if I put them in that 10 gallon tank after I remove the fish?


Any suggestions from those with more experience the best way to proceed? Thanks all!




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On 10/1/2022 at 2:06 PM, Colu said:

What your describing could wasting disease you want to treat with fritz Expel p active ingredient is levamisole  or a product containing flubendazole  it can take three full course of treatment 

Thank you! That gave me good buzz words to help me search. For reference of anyone else who might find this thread, I found this co-co-op article:



ok, it’s for specifically for live bearers, but it does reference wasting disease and the fritz expel-p you mentioned. I’ve gone ahead and ordered that to treat the remaining fish in the tank and hopefully prevent any more from wasting away. 

thanks again!

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