BS001 BS001
  • Just popping in
  • Just popping in
  • Joined: 2/8 12:55
  • Group: Registered Users
  • Posts: 4
  • Posted on: 2/8 13:08
White lump in mouth #1
Hi there, I’d like to get some advice to see if someone’s had a similar situation. My Male dwarf gourami who lives with one female has been picking a lot of algae in the tank with his mouth and using it to build a bubble nest.

I’ve only had him for about a month and his mouth looks like it’s developed a small white lump - it doesn’t at all look like cotton mouth so I’m reluctant to medicate the tank with disease clear. The white ball is in his mouth at the bottom, hard to get a clear shot.

He’s eating fine but looks slightly more stressed than usual. Water levels are all fine close to perfect when tested.

Is this quite normal or has someone has fish that tend to get this? The shop assistant advised white spot treatment but really there are no white spots on either fish body.

Attach file:



jpeg  23334_5f26ac73264ee.jpeg (2,316.71 KB)
23334_5f26ac73264ee.jpeg 4032X3024 px

jpeg  23334_5f26acbb31dba.jpeg (2,316.71 KB)
23334_5f26acbb31dba.jpeg 4032X3024 px
fcmf fcmf
  • Coldwater Adviser
  • Coldwater Adviser
  • Joined: 17/10/2014 12:20
  • From -
  • Group: Registered Users Basic Membership Advisers
  • Posts: 826
  • Posted on: 2/8 14:50
Re: White lump in mouth #2
I've had a couple of fish (a neon green rasbora and a cardinal tetra) who have intermittently had one white mark/lump/dot/spot on their mouth. It's never evolved into anything more than that. I'd advise:
* not medicating just yet - no need to on the basis of what the current situation is;
* ensure that ammonia and nitrite remain at 0 and nitrates no higher than 20 (or 20 above tap water levels) at all times - this may require more frequent and/or larger water changes to maintain this;
* if further symptoms develop or additional spots, consider medication at that point for whatever it evolves into.

In the event that it evolves into whitespot, then you may find this article helpful: https://www.fishkeeping.co.uk/articles_88/white-spot.htm
BS001 BS001
  • Just popping in
  • Just popping in
  • Joined: 2/8 12:55
  • Group: Registered Users
  • Posts: 4
  • Posted on: 2/8 16:57
Re: White lump in mouth #3
That’s excellent advice thank you, I suspected just as much to wait and see if it develops any further. NO2 is always 0 but NO3 seems to be edging upwards from 20 to 40, I change the water weekly.
fcmf fcmf
  • Coldwater Adviser
  • Coldwater Adviser
  • Joined: 17/10/2014 12:20
  • From -
  • Group: Registered Users Basic Membership Advisers
  • Posts: 826
  • Posted on: 2/8 18:02
Re: White lump in mouth #4
Glad to be of help. You don't mention an ammonia test but it's as crucial as the nitrite/NO2 test; if you don't already have one, then do buy a liquid-based one to ensure you can keep monitoring water quality of ammonia/ammonium as well as nitrite and nitrates.
BS001 BS001
  • Just popping in
  • Just popping in
  • Joined: 2/8 12:55
  • Group: Registered Users
  • Posts: 4
  • Posted on: 6/8 13:50
Re: White lump in mouth #5
Thanks I’ll look into the additional test. The fish still has the same lump in his mouth and sense it’s more of a mouth disease as no sign of white spots on the body of either fish. Perhaps this is because he picks a lot of things in his mouth like algae.

Would you perhaps try half a dose of disease clear (by King British) or do you think it may do more damage than good?
fcmf fcmf
  • Coldwater Adviser
  • Coldwater Adviser
  • Joined: 17/10/2014 12:20
  • From -
  • Group: Registered Users Basic Membership Advisers
  • Posts: 826
  • Posted on: 6/8 15:29
Re: White lump in mouth #6
You may well be correct.
Sometimes I use a broad-spectrum medication or a 'natural' type of tonic treatment at a lower-than-recommended dosage for my own fish if torn over the idea of whether or not to medicate, but feeling that the situation is not severe enough to warrant use of medication (and thereby setting up the quarantine tank to isolate the fish in for those purposes). *However,*, I am aware that some fishes with a labyrinth organ can have adverse reactions to some treatments, seemingly some that might leave a slick on the water surface and hamper their efforts to breathe.
On the basis of the above, *plus* the fact you don't know what the ammonia reading is, I'd probably not treat for now, but simply let pristine water quality resolve the issue, and hence all the more reason to test to find out ammonia levels. If ammonia is at 0, *and* the problem persists, then you could try the medication. If the problem worsens, then try the medication but getting/retaining ammonia at 0 is equally and indeed more crucial.
Hope that helps.
BS001 BS001
  • Just popping in
  • Just popping in
  • Joined: 2/8 12:55
  • Group: Registered Users
  • Posts: 4
  • Posted on: 10/8 17:56
Re: White lump in mouth #7
Thank you once again. I’ve tested ammonia levels which were zero and have started medicating the tank to see if it makes a difference - I’m using half a dose every 3-4 days. Also tricky as will be on holiday for 10 days soon so hate the idea of leaving a potentially sick fish at this time.