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Copperband disease


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Hey guys - belated Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukkah, and Happy New Year to everyone!!!


My Copperband developed a bump on his dorsal fin. He's in the 10g quarantine (4th day) and I've got him in Organi-Cure (copper stuff) and the kick-fungas/ich stuff, but his flesh is literally disappearing.


For future reference, I'd really like to know (1)what the H this is that's eating him alive and (2)what I can/could've done for him.... I figured it was fungal, based on how it looked, but I have no idea and can't find anything online.


The quarantine meds don't seem to be helping AT ALL. Every morning more bone is exposed (sad)


I know fish have a rudimentary nervous system and don't experience 'pain' the way we do, but I still feel horrible for the little guy. :(


Thanks in advance for any info you can provide ...



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A quick freshwater bath or lowering the quarantine tank salinity for a longer period of time? What level salinity are you talking about? The quarantine is around 1.021 right now.


I'm not even sure if the copper can take more stress at this point...


I sent an email to wetweb. I haven't been on there before and it's HUGE so I don't even know how to ck to see if they've gotten or responded to my inquiry. I'll just keep checking and see if I can find it. Thanks

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My honest opinion... I think the fish will not make it more than a few days. If it was mine I would start a fresh water drip till it gets to about 1.010 (hypo is 1.090 to 1.012) over the course of 1 day. I personally have acclimated ick fish to hypo in less than 8 hours but this case calls for slower acclimation because of the condition of the fish.


The odds are against him, but if its a parasite and it looks like its is.. this will help, but if he can recover you need to take action... but at the same time the action may kick him over faster. Its a double edge sword.

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I was trying to medicate with the marine tetracycline but he won't eat of course...


He's now half lying on the bottom gasping, so it's the final Death Knoll. Thank goodness.--I can't bear to watch it slowly devour him anymore. It actually looks much worse NOW, tonight, than in this pic I took this morning. The rot is quickly moving down his body breaking down flesh. It's unbelievable how aggressively this infection annihilated him--there's little pieces of loose flesh floating around in the tank now, and he's lost skin almost down to his eye now =0


I'd accepted two days ago that he was a goner; I'm freaking out about this super-infection, whatever it is. It took only a week to take this copperband from normal to Skeletor.

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If Fenner responds to your question on treatment can you please post it here, I would be interested in his response.


It always sucks so lose an animal, even a fish. Sorry to hear. Coppers are pretty hard to keep long term, I had one for sometime and sold him off... took forever to catch the clam nipper.

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RIP Copperband. Thank god his misery is over.


It looked like he committed fish suicide. He'd crammed his entire nose straight down into the sand all the way up to his eye and his body was sticking up vertically with the tail up: "Goodbye cruel world!!!"


(Side note: A full-grown copperband doesn't really fit down a standard toilet(whistle))


I hope that's the end of the killer alien infection(scary)

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I dont know much about treating issues like this, but I can say that:

Copper and hypo only help with parasites

TRUE fungal infections are very very rare in our tanks, it virtually never happens


so, i would have guessed antiobiotics would have been the best route, they dont have to eat to be treated when you use them in a hospital tank.


Anyway, like I said, Im no expert in this department, but that is my understanding.

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Thanks Joel - good to know.


Bob Fenner DID respond to my email. He said the following:

with a veterinarian in your area? Please have them contact me through this email

address. A shot or two of Chloramphenicol might save this animal... but I am

dubious. Bob Fenner>


I've been shopping around for UV or ozone to use periodically as a cleaner/preventative (not because I had any particular issues prior to this one) but I haven't gotten it yet. It's a good idea probably. Thus far the rest of the main tank is going along great as usual,and no signs of any issues. *knock on wood*


Thanks guys

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My sister bought it for me, so it was new. I was going to add a thing or two to the tank anyway, and she offered to buy it for me as part of my Christmas. The Copperband was the addition.


We happened to show up at Saltwater FantaSeas when they received their shipment, so the Copperband was never removed from the shipping bag he arrived in. He never even touched FantaSeas water.


He looked fine when we got him but a day or two later we noticed the darkening bump forming under his dorsal fin, so I assume he was probably already infected when the distributor shipped him to Portland (not that they knew necessarily).


He was the same size as my yellow tang and the tang perceived that as a threat, so the tang harrassed the Copperband ceaselessly. I'm sure the stress of being chased constantly probably hurried the infection along. I should've thought to get a small Copperband, as our tang seems to ignore smaller fish. *Another lesson learned*


I was told when I got him that the shipment came from a distributor in Los Angeles CA.

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I'd interpret that as good news; had the fish been a longtime resident, I'd be concerned about more widespread infection. As it is though, you might want to keep the tank as stress-free as possible for a while. That was a crazy infection...

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