Hi, I am sorry to be back here again. I posted here a month ago about my stressed goldfish with mystery pinholes appearing on it's fins. I got some advice and was hoping the condition would improve. But no one knew what was wrong with it. Since then I have changed the food and have been monitoring it closely.
I have come to a conclusion, it is definitely some kind of parasite with 7-8 days long life cycle that is causing this. My fish gets very stressed every 7-8 days, dashing around, itchy, flickering it's fins and occasional bottom sitting. It looks stressed for about 2-3 days when the white spots/discolouration are appearing on it's fins. Once the white spots go away new pinholes appeare at the same places where the white spots were. Usually it gets 3-5 spots at the same time.
Today it's fins are the worst ever, covered!! in white discolouration/spots and one of the spots (the largest one) has turned reddish colour, like it's bleeding. My fish has been bottom sitting the entire day and night when the spots started to appear, it does swim around when I feed it (for an hour or so looking for food from the bottom of the tank) and then goes back to bottom sitting.
I can't see anything on it's body, the spots are only on it's fins. It looks very stressed and has stringy poop now. I fed some peas yesterday but it was still stringy this morning.
It also had like a 5 second seisure today when it looked frozen and was shivering, including twitching mouth, it snapped out of it when I went closer, very strange!
The problem has been going on for a very long time, over 6 months, maybe even a year and has got progessively worse. My other fish is fine and healthy. My tank is established and I am 99% sure it's not the water parameters that are causing this. I have done 30% water changes for the last 3 days, all parameters are the same as always.
I have to treat the tank immediately, I don't want to lose my fish, I have had it for 6 years. I am thinking to treat for ich because my healthy fish had ich some time ago and might be immune to it now, would that explain why the parasite won't attack it? But the spots are not grain/salt like, they are more flat and are only on it's fins..They do look like spots though.
The other option I am thinking is flukes?? Can it be flukes? I have no experience with flukes so I am not sure.
Sometimes I have noticed something "dangling" where the spot is, something very small, less than 1mm, maybe it's just the broken skin, too small to see clearly. Anchor worms would be a lot bigger wouldn't they? I have noticed it twice now but only on the largest worst looking spot.
I would appreciate any advice! I have attached some pictures I took this morning, it doesn't look as bad in pictures, it was really difficult to capture it.
Thank you for your reply! The other fish started sitting on the bottom too!!! :( It hasn't got any visible signs of parasites. Just very lethargic. They are sitting on the bottom together side by side :(((
I did a lot of research today and nothing came up that is even nearly similar. I decided to treat with Waterlife Sterazin, only because the other fish hasn't got any visible signs on it's body and it treats internal parasites too. Maybe I made a mistake but it's been getting worse by hour, I just had to do something.
Thank you for the links, I will do some reading. And thank you for the link for the vet!
I tested the water again, everything seems normal to me.
PH - 8 Ammonia - 0 Nitrite - 0 Nitrate - 5 (it's 5 in my tap water) Carbonate Hardness - 8dKH General hardness - 12dGH
Have a look at this article, https://fishlab.com/freshwater-ich/ I think that this is what your fish suffers of. Many years ago when I had an aquarium (starting again and have to learn lots as the world has moved) I have used to add Formalin to the water. If you do that be very careful as too much will kill all your fish
Hi, Thank you so much for your advice! I was so undecided if I should treat for ich or flukes. I decided for flukes as the spots weren't like salt, more like white discolouration and the other fish was suffering too and had no visible signs, no marks or spots, just the itching and bottom sitting. The other one was so unwell that I even considered taking it out and end it's suffering, it was having 5 second seizures when it lost control over it's movements, tail up, head down and shaking (approx. once every hour). I am so glad I treated for flukes as 2 days after the treatment they started swimming around again, only for a few hours but that was a massive improvement and today all the red marks and white discolouration has disappeared, no shaking and flicking the fins. No more sitting on the bottom, not 100% just yet, but getting stronger every day. Thank you!
This is fantastic news - and I hope your fish continue to improve. Well done for opting for that choice of medication! Thanks so much for your update, and the photos and detail which are very useful indeed, should anyone else's fish experience similar symptoms.
[PS. You don't, by any chance, happen to have a video of the fish's seizures and shaking? I'm guessing not, as you wouldn't have had time to grab a phone to record it, but if you did, it would be useful learning to see it.]
I haven't got any recordings as it always happened so unexpectedly, I wish I did record it, I have never seen anything like this.. I really hope my post will help someone in the future. I did lot's of Googling and researching. There are so many websites and forums. I came across a few forums where people were asking about pinholes and similar symptoms and no one knew what it was and their fish died a few days later. There are lots of basic information available about skin and gill flukes on internet but I came across only 1 or 2 websites that described the symptoms in more depth. The other symptoms that are not usually mentioned are: The affected fish would only use one gill for breathing, the other one would be closed shut due to an excessive mucus their body is producing to protect them from flukes or the opposite, the other gill would be constantly open. I never noticed that on my fish first as didn't know to check that but when I found out about this and checked it's right gill was completely shut and not moving at all and it was using only it's other one for breathing. Also there is another symptom that is not mentioned on most sites - it's random shivering/shaking, I think that's what the seizures were that my fish experienced.. Flukes are basically drilling holes into their gills, fins and body, that explains the pinholes as well. My fish had blood streaks on it's fins that appeared overnight. That was not mentioned as a symptom on any webites. What was mentioned was only red spots on body. I have learned so much over the last 6 years, especially over the last few weeks, I really hope my post will help someone to save their fish. I feel like I have managed to save mine this time and I couldn't be happier! This forum is amazing!