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COMMON AROWANA DISEASES

Understanding the Common Arowana Diseases

Asian Arowana (Scleropages Formosus), also affectionately known as Dragon Fish (龙鱼) in Asia, is native to Southeast Asia. Asian Arowanas inhabit blackwater conditions in rivers and wetland, where the water is soft and acidic. The Arowana is a geomantic and majestic fish and often regarded as a symbol of luck, wealth and prosperity. Arowana owners believe that if it is treated well, it will protect them from misfortunes and bless them with good fortune and good luck. Sometimes the Arowana will become ill, but by knowing how to identify the disease, the correct treatment can be administered. Below, we look into some of the more common Arowana diseases, their prevention, and most importantly, how to treat them in the unfortunate event they become sick.


Anchor Worms

Causes

Anchor Worms (Lernaea spp.) are crustacean, copepod parasites. It is parasitic at the Copepodid stage (juvenile) and the female at the Cyclopoid stage (adult).

The female adult will bore into the Arowana usually at the skin, fin and gill area after mating and embed herself in the host tissue using its anterior anchor. The adult female measure about 9mm and appears on the host body as worm-like threads. Poor water parameters and tank conditions will often result in secondary infection, resulting in inflammation and subsequent swelling at the area where female adult burrow into the Arowana.

Most hobbyists will often observe a behavioral change in their Arowanas which alerts them to the presence of the Anchor Worm, e.g. Arowana constantly rubbing against surfaces or ‘darting’. The Anchor Worms are often introduced into aquarium through new fishes or ‘live feed’ especially goldfish.

The optimal temperature range for Anchor Worm is 26–28°C.

Prevention

Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of diseases or parasites. If possible, treat feeder tank with OceanFree® ‘0’ Anchor Worm & Fish Lice. Dose OceanFree® ‘0’ Anchor Worm & Fish Lice according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

Dose OceanFree® ‘0’ Anchor Worm & Fish Lice according to the recommended dosage. It targets the insect’s nervous system which causes them to turn from transparent to opaque white, the dead Anchor Worm will only drop off the Arowana after 2-3 days. Repeat medication and perform a 30% water change every 3 days. It is recommended to maintain the treatment for at least 2 weeks even when the Arowana has recovered earlier to ensure that the Anchor Worm has been thoroughly eliminated. Physical removal is not recommended as it is stressful for the fish and it is not easy to completely remove the Anchor Worms.

Notes

Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Barbels Infection / Hemorrhoids

Causes

This is common among Arowanas that has a habit of rubbing their barbels against the tank. Long term abrasion may cause the tissues to become injured. Poor water parameters and tank conditions will often result in secondary infection, resulting in inflammation and subsequent swelling.

This can be identified by a small growth on the barbell and often mistaken for fungal growth.

Treatment Method

Important, consult your local veterinarian or a professional for the following procedure.

  1. Transfer the Arowana to a smaller tank/container.

  2. Refrain from feeding your Arowana at least 8 hours before anesthesia.

  3. Anesthetize your Arowana with OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-6 (Stabilizer) according to the recommended dosage, taking care to slowly dose till the Arowana is anesthetized.

  4. Disinfect the area and swiftly remove the growth with a sterilized instrument.

  5. Apply OF® 3rd Generation Yellow Powder on the wound to prevent bacterial infection.

  6. After placing the Arowana back in the tank, dose OF® 3rd Generation Yellow Powder in the tank according to the recommended dosage.

Notes

Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump to help the Arowana regain consciousness after being placed back in the tank. Observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Cloudy Eye

Causes

Cloudy white film or grey ‘haze’ that forms over the Arowana’s eye(s) causing the affected eye to appear opaque or slightly opaque. Cloudy Eyes in severe cases will even show as fungal growth on the surface of the eyes. Treatment must be carried out as it may lead to secondary infection and cause blindness if not treated early.

  1. Poor water quality or harmful chemicals introduced into the water.

  2. A symptom of bacterial infections (e.g. Streptococcus, Vibrio or Mycobacterium marinum), however these usually come accompanied by other physical symptoms such as markings on the fish.

  3. Physical injury to the eye.

  4. Hyper-production of slime due to poisoning or irritation.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of diseases or parasites.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Check the water parameters as maintaining healthy water is the key to healthy Arowanas.

  2. Dose OF® Arowana Anti-Cloudy Eye. Apply one capsule per 60 liters of water. Break open the capsule and dose the powdered medication evenly in the tank, or mix the powder in a small container with dechlorinated water first before pouring it evenly in the tank. After dosing the medication, perform a 30% water change every 3 days. Repeat twice.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Columnaris / Severe Fin Rot

Causes

Columnaris or severe Fin Rot is caused by the infection of Gram-negative, aerobic, bacterium Flavobacterium columnare usually through the gills, skin damage or oral access. Symptoms include skin lesions, fin erosion and gill necrosis. It is often mistaken for fungal infection.

The bacteria are prevalent in fresh water. When the Arowana is stressed by factors such as poor water quality, high stocking density, unsuitable tank mates or water with low oxygen levels, it will cause the Arowana to be susceptible to the disease. The disease is highly contagious, with a high degree of mortality.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of bacteria.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. If the water quality is very poor, it is recommended to change 20% of the water, and dose OF® Anti-Columnaris according to recommended dosage. Do not raise the heat of the water as the columnar bacteria has shown to be more efficient and fatal at higher temperatures. If the condition improves after three days, change 30% water and dose OF Anti-Columnaris again. At the same time, use OF Magna Salt at a salinity of 5PPT (parts per thousand), repeat treatment until the Arowana has recovered.

  2. For herbal treatment, dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage. At the same time, use OF® Magna Salt at a salinity of 5PPT (parts per thousand). Because of the mild nature of herbal treatments, OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease can be dosed every day until the Arowana has fully recovered.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Drop Eye

Causes

There are a few possible causes of Drop Eye in Arowanas. Here we explore the most common causes:

  1. Environmental Factors. If there is an attention-grabbing light-source within 2 meters of the tank, e.g. television, window, table lamp, further made worse by a cramp swimming space in a small tank, the Arowana will quickly develop Drop Eye.

  2. Impact. Arowanas are jumpers and regular impact/head trauma against the tank lid has been identified as a possible cause of Drop Eye.

  3. Diet. In the wild, Arowana hunt for their food for preys that are in or above the water surface and often jumping to catch their prey off low hanging branches. In the tank, uneaten food sink to the bottom and overtime the Arowana will develop a habit of looking down.

  4. Genetics. A possible cause in some cases as Drop Eye is more common in some Arowana species like Silver Arowana. However it could also be due to the jumpy characteristic of Silver Arowana resulting in more frequent impact-caused Drop Eye.

Prevention

  1. Environmental Factors. If circumstances allow, keep your Arowana in a community tank from an early age as the constant activity in a community tank will keep its attention.

  2. Impact. Avoid sudden action that will startle the Arowana. If you are using glass lids, you can try to increase its visibility by marking clear lines on the glass.

  3. Diet. Switch to floating pellet/live food (e.g. OF® AR-G1OF® AR-G2 Arowana Pellet) to keep the Arowana’s focus in the upper half of the tank, minimizing the need for Arowana to look down for food.

Treatment Method

  1. See prevention.

  2. If option is available, transfer the Arowana to a pond or fibre tank. This will limit the Arowana’s visual focus to the surface and gradually correct the Drop Eye.

  3. Alternatively, cover the tank’s side, leaving only the top quarter uncovered. This will limit the Arowana’s visual focus to the top and gradually correct the Drop Eye.

  4. Prolonged cases of Drop Eye will be more difficult to rectify as fats will gradually grow over the sagging part of the eye. In such cases, it might be necessary to contact a veterinarian or professional to correct the defect.


Dropsy Causes

Dropsy (also known as ‘Pinecone’, ‘Protruding Scales’ or ‘Edema’) is caused by bacterial infection of the kidneys and is more common in juvenile Arowanas. When the Arowana suffers physical injuries, diseases, weakened immunity caused by poor water conditions, or mucosal damage, it is easily infected by pathogens (virus, bacteria or even fungi.

When the kidney function has been damaged, the Arowana is unable to regulate the body’s water balance, resulting in swelling of the Arowana particularly around the abdomen and causing the scales to protrude. This gives the Arowana a spiky, ‘pinecone-like’ appearance.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of diseases or parasites.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. In the early stage of the disease, add OF® Magna Salt according to recommended dosage. Maintain good water change regime. It is recommended to isolate the Arowana or to remove the aggressor to reduce the chance of any further wounds or infections. At the same time, the water temperature must be kept constant at 30 ~ 32 °C.

  2. Observe the Arowana, if it breathes and swims normally; do not add other drugs. Allow the Arowana to recover naturally. If there are no signs of relief of the symptoms, or worsening of the symptoms (such as forming of ulcers, redness, or the increase in the number of scales, etc.), add OF® Anti-Dropsy according to recommended dosage. Break open the capsule and dose the powdered medication evenly in the tank, or mix the powder in a small container with de-chlorinated water first before pouring it evenly in the tank. Continue treatment and perform a 30% water change every 3 days. Repeat twice.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


External Injuries

Causes

It is common for Arowanas to injure themselves when they hit against rocks, driftwood, equipment, tanks, and tank lids or in fights against other Arowanas.

Prevention

  1. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds.

  2. Avoid large ‘ornamental’ displays with rough surfaces that might injure your Arowana.

Treatment Method

  1. If injuries are not serious, dose OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-4 (Arowana Slime, White Spot & Velvet Away) according to the recommended dosage, and ensure prevention of secondary infections.

  2. In the event of more serious injuries, supplement with OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-3 (External Bacteria & Fungus Away) according to recommended dosage.

  3. After dosing the medication, perform a 30% water change every 3 days. Repeat treatment twice.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


External Ulceration

Causes

The main cause of this disease is by bacterial infection. Deterioration of water quality or feeding unclean food will cause an Arowana with weakened immunity to be affected.

Parasitic or physical wounds might also cause secondary infection leading to ulceration.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize stress to the Arowana.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of bacteria and parasites.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Dose OF® 3rd Generation Yellow Powder according to the recommended dosage.

  2. Continue treatment and perform a 30% water change every 3 days.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Fish Lice Causes

Fish Lice (Argulus spp) is a parasitic crustacean from the Branchiura subclass. Using large ventral suckers to feed, they usually attach themselves to the tail fin, dorsal fin, abdominal area by piercing through the skin and consuming the blood through the blood vessels.

They measure about 3-5 mm and are not easy to spot. Most hobbyists will often observe a behavioral change in their Arowanas which alerts them to the presence of the fish lice, e.g. Arowana constantly rubbing against surfaces or ‘darting’.

The Fish Lice are often introduced into aquarium through new fishes or ‘live feed’.

Prevention

  1. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of diseases or parasites.

  2. Dose OceanFree® ‘0’ Anchor Worm & Fish Lice according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Dose OceanFree® ‘0’ Anchor Worm & Fish Lice according to the recommended dosage.

  2. Repeat medication and perform a 30% water change every 3 days. It is recommended to maintain the treatment for at least 2 weeks even when the Arowana has recovered earlier to ensure that the Fish Lice has been thoroughly eliminated.

  3. Physical removal is not recommended as it is stressful for the fish and it is not easy to completely remove the Fish Lice.

Notes

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).

Arowana Gill Flap Curl / Turn

Causes

Gills are very important as it enables the Arowana to extract dissolved oxygen from water, allowing it to breathe. Hence ‘Turning of Gill Flap’ is dangerous as it exposes the sensitive gills.

In the initial stages, the gill flap movement will appear irregular and the Arowana’s breathing will become laboured. Next, the gill flaps will start to curl up, exposing the gills. Finally sclerosis (hardening) of Gill Flap takes place, usually accompanied by other gill complications. At this time, the Arowana will find it difficult to breathe and will come up to the surface for air. This will often lead to death.

  1. Poor water quality usually caused by overfeeding, overstocking, and/or lack of tank maintenance results in the deterioration of water quality. The resulting ammonia (NH³), nitrite (NO²) and nitrate (NO³) building up in the tank results might cause lower dissolved oxygen levels, which causes irregular breathing and gill flap movement.

  2. Arowana in the growth stage requires not only good nutrition but also sufficient space to for their healthy development. A cramped space will affect the normal functioning of the gills and over time, will cause the gill flaps to turn.

  3. Abrupt temperature changes or unsuitable water temperatures may affect the Arowanas’ sensitive gills.

  4. Use of powerheads with very high flow-rates might cause the gill flap to flip up and become damaged in the process.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters, constant water temperature and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Ensure sufficient swimming space for your Arowana. A general guide will be to provide a swimming space with 3x length of the Arowana and wide enough for the Arowana to turn.

Treatment Method

Stage 1. Gill flap movement is irregular (e.g. unable to open and close properly)

  1. Conduct 30% water change every 3 days and increase oxygenation with an Air Pump.

  2. Consider changing to a bigger tank if tank is too small.

Stage 2. Gill flaps curled up, not hardened yet.

  1. Conduct 30% water change every 3 days and increase oxygenation with an Air Pump.

  2. Increase water flow along the length of the tank. This allows the Arowana to swim against the water current which aids the gills’ recovery.

Stage 3. Gill flaps curled up and Sclerosis (hardening) of Gill flap. Important, consult your local veterinarian or a professional for the following procedure.

  1. Transfer the Arowana to a smaller tank/container.

  2. Refrain from feeding your Arowana at least 8 hours before anesthesia.

  3. Anesthetize your Arowana with OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-6 (Stabilize) according to the recommended dosage, taking care to slowly dose till the Arowana is anesthetized.

  4. Disinfect the area and swiftly trim the hard edge of the affected gill’s cover with sterilized scissors.

  5. Apply OF® 3rd Generation Yellow Powder on the wound to prevent bacterial infection.

  6. After placing the Arowana back in the tank, dose OF® 3rd Generation Yellow Powder in the tank according to the recommended dosage.

Notes

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump to help the Arowana regain consciousness after being placed back in the tank. Observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).

Gill Rot / Gill Infection

Causes

When the Arowana is stressed by factors such as poor water quality, high stocking density, unsuitable tank mates or water with low oxygen levels, it will cause the Arowana to be susceptible to the disease.

The gill is quite often the route of infection as it is the first point of contact where fungal spores and parasite spores are taken in from the water into the Arowana, and soon leading to secondary infection in poor water conditions.

Gill Rot caused by the fungi Branchiomyces sanguinis and Branchiomyces demigrans is contagious. Both fungi grow in the gill area of the Arowana resulting in necrosis (death of gill tissue). Once the gills start to rot, the Arowana will suffer from respiratory problems that often lead to death.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of bacteria, fungus and parasites.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Dose both OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-4 (Slime, White Spot & Velvet Away) and OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-5 (Internal Bacteria & Ulcer Away), using half the recommended dosage for both.

  2. Continue treatment and perform a 30% water change every 3 days.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).

Mycosis/Fungal Infection

Causes

  1. Poor aquarium conditions resulting in illnesses that introduce open wounds that fungus grow on. Healthy Arowana has a mucus layer on the skin that fungus is unable to develop on.

  2. Physical wounds/injuries caused by unsuitable or aggressive tank mates.

  3. Parasitic attacks which creates open wounds for the fungus to grow on.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of diseases or parasites.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Dose both OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-3 (External Bacteria and Fungus Away) and OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-4 (Arowana Slime, White Spot & Velvet Away), using half the recommended dosage for both.

  2. Repeat treatment and perform a 30% water change every 3 days.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Not Swimming / At Bottom of Tank

Causes

  1. The Arowana is relocated into a new or unfamiliar environment.

  2. A drastic change in water parameters during water change.

  3. Abrupt change in water temperature due to insufficiently-sized heater.

  4. Indigestion.

Prevention

  1. Ensure tank is properly cycled before introduction of Arowana into the tank. Turn lights off when introducing the Arowana.

  2. Regular small water changes (20% volume) are preferred over large volume water changes which tend to cause drastic water parameter changes.

  3. Use a suitably sized heater to maintain a constant water temperature.

  4. Reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of bacteria and parasite.

  5. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment

  1. Dose OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-7 (Black Water) and OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-8 (Vitamin Complex) to build up the Arowana’s health while reducing environmental stress.

  2. In the case of indigestion, dose OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-7 (Black Water) and add OF® Magna Salt according to the recommended dosage.

Notes

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Protruding Anus

Causes

  1. Arowana has a relatively weak gastrointestinal system which causes problems commonly associated with poor digestion.

  2. Arowana ‘Protruding Anus’ is actually caused by inflammation of the tissues around the rectal area, which results in swelling and subsequent protruding of the tissues. This is often caused by the Arowana eating unclean food, food that is difficult to digest (e.g. Chitin on mealworms) or feed with sharp hard edges (e.g. pincers on market prawns), resulting in intestinal infection.

  3. Long-term feeding of a single or feed that is difficult to digest, e.g. mealworms (big or small), centipedes, crickets or dried shrimps. Long-term feeding will cause a slight wound near the anus, and eventually cause anal inflammation and protrusion.

  4. Irregular water changes and feeding can cause gastrointestinal disorders and in this case, Arowana ‘Protruding Anus’.

Prevention

  1. Minimize feeding of food that is difficult to digest, if necessary, process the food to remove ‘dangerous’ parts like pincers, sharp and hard parts before feeding.

  2. Feed at regular times with pellet food (e.g. OF AR-G1/AR-G2 Arowana Pellet)

  3. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

Treatment

In mild cases of Protruding Anus, fast the Arowana for a few days until the swelling has subsided. Do not feed until the inflammation has fully gone to avoid any relapse.

In prolonged cases of Protruding Anus, there is a need to administer treatment according to the Arowana’s condition as follows:

  1. Check the water quality, change fresh filter wool, etc. The treatment will be more effective by providing your Arowana with good water quality.

  2. Raise water temperature to 30-31 °C.

  3. Depending on the severity of the Protruding Anus, fast the Arowana from two days to a week, do a water change and add salt.

  4. After fasting, feed the Arowana with easy-to-digest food, e.g. ARG1 pellet or processed shrimp.

  5. If swelling persists, dose OF 3RD GENERATION YELLOW POWDER according to recommended dosage. Continue treatment and perform a 30% water change every 3 days.

Notes

  1. During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and Cata-Pure cartridges (if you are using OF Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and dechlorinated).


Scales Infection / Corrosion

Causes

This is a symptom of bacterial infection with the scales appearing to be corroded or damaged. The most obvious feature is a crescent-shaped chip-off at the scale’s edge, sometimes accompanied by a whitening of the scales. It is mostly concentrated in the 5th, 4th, 6th and 3rd row of scales (starting from the highest probability) on the Arowana.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  3. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of bacteria.

  4. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Raise water temperature to 30 °C

  2. Dose OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-4 (Slime, White Spot & Velvet Away) and OF® 3rd Generation Yellow Powder according to the recommended dosage.

  3. Repeat treatment and perform a 30% water change every 2 days.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


Swim Bladder Disease

Causes

Swim bladder is an important organ that helps the fish maintains its buoyancy. Arowanas affected by Swim Bladder Disease exhibits certain symptoms which includes the fish floating nose down, tail up, upside down or floating/sinking.

Swim Bladder Disease is usually caused by two main factor:

1. Constipation causing the impingement of the swim bladder. 2. Infection of the swim bladder organ, or both Infection and Constipation.

Prevention

  1. Minimize feeding of food that is difficult to digest, if necessary, process the food to remove ‘dangerous’ parts like pincers, sharp and hard parts before feeding.

  2. Feed at regular times with pellet food (e.g. OF AR-G1 / AR-G2 Arowana Pellet)

  3. Avoid overfeeding.

  4. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  5. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Transfer Arowana to a treatment tank and minimize feeding.

  2. Reduce water level to one that allows the Arowana to remain afloat to reduce stress on the fish and maintain constant temperature at 32°C.

  3. Add OF MAGNA SALT according to the recommended dosage.

  4. Dose OF 3RD GENERATION YELLOW POWDER to combat possible bacterial infection.

  5. Repeat medication and perform a 30% water change every 3 days.

Notes

Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


White Spot or Ich

Ichthyophthirius multifiliis or more commonly known as Ich, is a ciliated protozoan that attaches itself to the Arowana’s body, skin or gill. Ich is vulnerable to medication only in the Tomont and Theront stages of its biological cycle.

The entire biological cycle takes approximately 7 days at 25°C (77°F) to 8 weeks at 6°C (43°F), thus increasing the water temperature to 30°C can accelerate their biological cycle, allowing treatments to target in the Tomont and Theront stage.

  • Trophont Stage – Found under the surface mucus coating on skin and gills of the fish where it is protected from medication. A fully developed Trophont measures about 1mm and is visible to naked eye.

  • Tomont Stage – Detaches from host and floats around till it attaches on a plant or surface.

  • Tomite Stage – Tomont starts to encyst and multiply within the cyst to form hundreds of Tomite.

  • Theront Stage – Infective and needs to find a host within 2-3 days.

Causes

  1. Abrupt changes in aquarium parameters like pH, water temperatures. This usually occurs after a water change.

  2. Poor aquarium conditions resulting in weaker Arowana immunity.

  3. Introduction of fish, equipment or objects that is carrying the cysts.

  4. Stress caused by rough handling, unsuitable or aggressive aquarium mates.

Prevention

  1. Maintain good water parameters and tank cleanliness. Remove uneaten food, conduct regular water changes and do not overstock your tank.

  2. If possible try to ensure parameters (temperature and pH) of your aquarium and new water is as similar as possible to reduce shock caused from abrupt parameter changes.

  3. Minimize handling and choose compatible tank mates to minimize risk of physical wounds and stress factors.

  4. Quarantine new fishes and reduce feeding of ‘live feed’ to minimize risk of introduction of diseases or parasites.

  5. Dose OF® ‘0’ Arowana Disease herbal treatment according to the recommended dosage.

Treatment Method

  1. Increase the water temperature to 30 °C ~ 32 °C to accelerate the Ich’s biological cycle.

  2. Dose OceanFree® Special Arowana Medication-4 (Arowana Slime, White Spot & Velvet Away) according to the recommended dosage.

  3. Repeat medication and perform a 30% water change every 3 days. It is recommended to maintain the treatment for at least 2 weeks even when the Arowana has recovered earlier to ensure that the Ich has been thoroughly eliminated.

  4. Physical removal is not recommended as it is stressful for the fish and it is not easy to completely remove the Ich.

Notes

  • During the medication period, please remove mediums such as activated carbon, zeolite and OF® Cata-pure cartridges (if you are using OF® Hydra Depurators), as the effectiveness of the medication will be reduced.

  • Increase oxygenation with an Air Pump during the course of medication. After dosing, observed your Arowana for any signs of distress or heavy breathing for the next two hours. Immediate water change is required should the Arowana appear to be in distress (1/2 tank water change, ensure that the fresh water supply has been properly treated and de-chlorinated).


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