Support » The Fish Doctor » Diagnose what’s wrong » Leeches and Crustacean parasites

Our Diagnosis

It sounds like your fish has leeches and crustacean parasites

How to be sure

You will be able to see these parasites clinging to your fish’s skin, fins or gills. Areas where these parasites are attached may look sore and your fish will probably have rapid gill movement and be breathing or gasping at the water surface. Understandably, this will make your fish feel irritable and so it will try to shake them off by flicking, twitching and jumping.

Step 1 – Treat your fish

  • Remove the carbon filter out of your filtration – but don’t forget to return it 7 days after the last dose.
  • Use Anti Crustacean Parasite treatment treatment, you can check the correct dosage for your aquarium size here. Do not use with scaleless fish or invertebrates.
  • Also dose with Aqualibrium First Aid Salt – it helps boost your fish’s ability to fight the illness.
  • Give your fish some time-out to recover – avoid excessive cleaning, re-decorating or adding new fishy friends.
  • To re-treat, or treat another problem, follow the on pack guidelines for using more treatment.

Watch Out! – Treatments can sometimes reduce oxygen levels in the water. If you see fish gasping at the surface, you can increase oxygen by adding an air pump.

Step 2 – Treat your aquarium

  • When fish are sick, always test your aquarium water for excessive ammonia, nitrite, nitrate or pH imbalance.
  • Treat any unhealthy results to rebalance your water quality and give your fish the best chance of getting fighting fit again.
  • Check all your equipment is working properly – especially filters and heaters (check your aquarium temperature with your thermometer).  Carry out any maintenance needed, or replace faulty or broken parts.
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