List of aquarium diseases

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The following is a list of aquarium diseases. Aquarium fish are often susceptible to numerous diseases, due to the artificially limited and concentrated environment. New fish can sometimes introduce diseases to aquaria, and these can be difficult to diagnose and treat. Most fish diseases are also aggravated when the fish is stressed.


Common aquarium diseases include the following:


DiseaseCauseFish AffectedImageSymptomsTreatment
Piscine Tuberculosis Mycobacterium marinum bacteriaAllWeight loss evident on underparts, with corresponding loss of appetite, papules, discoloration and bulging eyes.Amputation
Fin Rot BacterialAllErosion at edges of finsImprove water quality, remove fin-nippers and feed Vitamin C - enriched food. Use anti-fungal treatment to prevent secondary infections
Mouth Fungus or Columnaris Flexibacter bacteriaAll, especially Livebearers Columnaris disease.jpg Cottony growth near jaws and loss of appetite.Improve water conditions. Use commercially available antibiotics
Swim Bladder Disease May be bacterial, or caused by chilling or digestive issuesAll, especially Balloon Mollies Inability to balance in the waterCheck water temperature. A medical bath may help.
Vibrosis Vibro bacteriaAllDiscoloration, reddish staining of fins, bulging eyes, lethargic behaviorMedicated food
Pseudomoniasis Pseudomonas bacteriaAllHemorrhages in mouth and ulceration on bodyMedicated food
Saprolegnia FungusFungalAllWhitish, fur-like growthsVitamin C enriched food, or a commercial remedy in a medical bath. Check to make sure that your fish doesn't prefer Brackish water
Egg Fungus FungalEggs onlyFungal growths on eggsRemove affected eggs. Use Methylene blue to medicate the hatching tank.
Lymphocystis ViralAllCauliflower-like growths and white areas around the eyesVaccines may be available
Iridovirus Viral Gouramis, angelfish, Ramirez Dwarf Cichlids and othersloss of appetite. Darkening in color. Enlarged abdomen. Occasionally Lymphocystis None
Singapore Angelfish Diseases Angelfish Inactivity, loss of appetite, high and rapid mortalityNone
Malawi Bloat Probably viral Lake Malawi Cichlids, especially vegetarian onesSimilar to Dropsy Offer a high-fiber diet
White Spots (Ick) Ichthyophthirius multifiliis parasiteAllSmall white spots, which may ulcerateRaise water temperature slightly and treat water with commercially available remedies
Hole-in-the-head Hexamita parasite Discus and Cichlids Oscar2.jpg Pale ulcerated area around head Metronidazole or similar medication. Use food containing Vitamin C
Neon Tetra Disease Pleistophora hyphessobryconis Parasite Neon Tetras DiscolorationNone
Skin or Gill Flukes Gyrodactylus and Dactylogyrus parasitesAllLabored breathing, scraping against objects, abnormal gill functionCommercially available medication
Anchor Worm Lernaea parasiteAllVisible parasites attached to body leading to ulceration and irritationremove parasites with forceps and use medicated bath to prevent secondary infection. Insecticide may help
Dropsy Varies from temperature, to indigestion to infectionAll Hydropisie.jpg Bloat, scales stick outVaries depending on the cause
Tetrahymena [ citation needed ]ParasiteFreshwater fish



DiseaseCauseFish AffectedImageSymptomsTreatment
Marine velvet Amyloodinium parasiteAll, fresh and salt waterPowdered appearance, gasping and disorganized swimming
Velvet Disease Oodinium and other parasitesAll salt and freshwater fish OodiniumFish.jpg Golden dots, rubbing against rocks while swimming
Septicemia or Egtved virusViral hemorrhagic septicemia virusMany fresh and salt water fish VHS.png hemorrhaging, internal and external Virkon AQUATIC



The goal of quarantine is to prevent problems in the main tank due to sickness. A quarantine tank should be used before to introduce any newly acquired animals in the main tank and to treat fish that are already sick. By doing this, the aquarist can avoid the spread of the disease and make it easier to treat the fish. [1]

See also

Related Research Articles

Neon tetra species of fish

The neon tetra is a freshwater fish of the characin family of order Characiformes. The type species of its genus, it is native to blackwater and clearwater streams in the Amazon basin of South America. Its bright colouring makes the fish visible to conspecifics in the dark blackwater streams, and is also the main reason for its popularity among freshwater fish hobbyists.

Acanthuridae Family of fishes with caudal spines

Acanthuridae are the family of surgeonfishes, tangs, and unicornfishes. The family includes about 86 extant species of marine fish living in tropical seas, usually around coral reefs. Many of the species are brightly colored and popular in aquaria.

<i>Ichthyophthirius multifiliis</i> species of protozoan

Ichthyophthirius multifiliis is an ectoparasite of freshwater fish which causes a disease commonly known as white spot disease, or Ich. Ich is one of the most common and persistent diseases in fish. It appears on the body, fins and gills of fish as white nodules of up to 1 mm, that look like white grains of salt. Each white spot is an encysted parasite. It is easily introduced into a fish pond or home aquarium by new fish or equipment which has been moved from one fish-holding unit or pond to another. When the organism gets into a large fish culture facility, it is difficult to control due to its fast reproductive cycle and its unique life stages. If not controlled, there is a 100% mortality rate of fish. With careful treatment, the disease can be controlled but the cost is high in terms of lost fish, labor, and cost of chemicals.

Fin rot is a symptom of disease or the actual disease in fish. This is a disease which is most often observed in aquaria and aquaculture, but can also occur in natural populations.

Marine aquarium

A marine aquarium is an aquarium that keeps marine plants and animals in a contained environment. Marine aquaria are further subdivided by hobbyists into fish only (FO), fish only with live rock (FOWLR), and reef aquaria. Fish only tanks often showcase large or aggressive marine fish species and generally rely on mechanical and chemical filtration. FOWLR and reef tanks use live rock, a material composed of coral skeletons harboring beneficial nitrogen waste metabolizing bacteria, as a means of more natural biological filtration.

New England Aquarium

The New England Aquarium is a public aquarium located in Boston, Massachusetts. In addition to the main aquarium building, attractions at the New England Aquarium include the Simons IMAX Theatre and the New England Aquarium Whale Watch, which operates from April through November. The aquarium has more than 22,000 members and hosts more than 1.3 million visitors each year.

Velvet (fish disease) fish disease

Velvet disease is a fish disease caused by dinoflagellate parasites of the genus Piscinoodinium, specifically Amyloodinium in marine fish, and Oodinium in freshwater fish. The disease gives infected organisms a dusty, brownish-gold color. The disease occurs most commonly in tropical fish, and to a lesser extent, marine aquaria.

Fishkeeping hobby practiced by aquarists

Fishkeeping is a popular hobby, practiced by aquarists, concerned with keeping fish in a home aquarium or garden pond. There is also a piscicultural fishkeeping industry, as a branch of agriculture.

Common goldfish

The common goldfish is a breed of goldfish with no other differences from its living ancestor, the Prussian carp, other than its color and shape. Goldfish are a form of domesticated wild carp and are a close relative of koi. Most varieties of fancy goldfish were derived from this simple breed. Common goldfish come in a variety of colors including red, orange, red/white, white/black, yellow/white, blue, grey/brown/, olive green, yellow, white, and black, with the most common variation being orange. Sometimes, the brightness, duration, and the vividness of the color may be an indication of the fish's health status.

<i>Cryptocaryon</i> species of protozoan

Cryptocaryon irritans is a species of ciliates that parasitizes marine fish, causing marine white spot disease or marine ich. It is one of the most common causes of disease in marine aquaria.

Sohal surgeonfish species of fish

The sohal surgeonfish or sohal tang, is a Red Sea endemic which grows to 16 in (40 cm) in the wild. Its striking blue and white horizontal stripes have made it what many consider the 'poster fish' for the Red Sea reef environment. It is a valued aquarium fish.

Disease in ornamental fish

Ornamental fish kept in aquariums are susceptible to numerous diseases. Due to their generally small size and the low cost of replacing diseased or dead fish, the cost of testing and treating diseases is often seen as more trouble than the value of the fish.

Dropsy (fish disease)

Dropsy is a disease in fish caused by the buildup of fluid inside the body cavity or tissues. As a symptom rather than a disease, it can indicate a number of underlying diseases, including bacterial infections, parasitic infections, or liver dysfunction.

Shark Reef at Mandalay Bay

The Shark Reef Aquarium at Mandalay Bay is a public aquarium located at and owned by the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Its main tank is 1,300,000 US gallons (4,900,000 l), one of the largest in North America. The facility is 95,000 sq ft (8,800 m2), and displays numerous different species of sharks, rays, fish, reptiles, and marine invertebrates. It also features a shark tunnel. The reef was developed in consultation with the Vancouver Aquarium.

Taraporewala Aquarium aquarium in Mumbai, India

Taraporewala Aquarium or Taraporevala Aquarium is India's oldest aquarium and one of the city's main attractions. It hosts marine and freshwater fishes. The aquarium is located on Marine Drive in Mumbai..

Freshwater aquarium

A freshwater aquarium is a receptacle that holds one or more freshwater aquatic organisms for decorative, pet-keeping, or research purposes. Modern aquariums are most often made from transparent glass or acrylic glass. Typical inhabitants include fish, plants, amphibians, and invertebrates, such as snails and crustaceans.

<i>Stichodactyla gigantea</i> Species of sea anemone

Stichodactyla gigantea, commonly known as the giant carpet anemone, is a species of sea anemone that lives in the Indo-Pacific area. It can be kept in an aquarium but is a very challenging species to keep alive and healthy for more than 3–5 years.

Aquarium transparent tank of water for fish and water-dwelling species

An aquarium is a vivarium of any size having at least one transparent side in which aquatic plants or animals are kept and displayed. Fishkeepers use aquaria to keep fish, invertebrates, amphibians, aquatic reptiles such as turtles, and aquatic plants. The term "aquarium", coined by English naturalist Philip Henry Gosse, combines the Latin root aqua, meaning water, with the suffix -arium, meaning "a place for relating to". The aquarium principle was fully developed in 1850 by the chemist Robert Warington, who explained that plants added to water in a container would give off enough oxygen to support animals, so long as the numbers of animals did not grow too large. The aquarium craze was launched in early Victorian England by Gosse, who created and stocked the first public aquarium at the London Zoo in 1853, and published the first manual, The Aquarium: An Unveiling of the Wonders of the Deep Sea in 1854. An aquarium is a water-filled tank in which fish swim about. Small aquariums are kept in the home by hobbyists. There are larger public aquariums in many cities. This kind of aquarium is a building with fish and other aquatic animals in large tanks. A large aquarium may have otters, turtles, dolphins, and other sea animals. Most aquarium tanks also have plants.

Fish disease and parasites disease that afflicts fish

Like humans and other animals, fish suffer from diseases and parasites. Fish defences against disease are specific and non-specific. Non-specific defences include skin and scales, as well as the mucus layer secreted by the epidermis that traps microorganisms and inhibits their growth. If pathogens breach these defences, fish can develop inflammatory responses that increase the flow of blood to infected areas and deliver white blood cells that attempt to destroy the pathogens.

Jack Dempsey cichlids in Australia

Jack Dempsey cichlids are aggressive aquarium fish named after the heavyweight boxer Jack Dempsey. They are native to Central America but were discovered in a flooded quarry in New South Wales (NSW) Australia in 2004. Although efforts were made to eradicate them in 2004 and 2005, the fish remain. Jack Dempsey cichlids are one of about 30 aquarium fish species that have become established in Australian waterways, and have been shown to have a significant impact on Australian aquatic ecosystems. They highlight the importance of preventing the importation of invasive fish species because they are extremely difficult or impossible to eradicate once they become established in the wild.


  1. "How To Quarantine Aquarium Fish And Invertebrates". Aquariums Life. 2009-03-24. Retrieved 2015-09-18.