The Seven Parasites You Need to Know About that Can Harm Your Pet Fish

Your pet fish need to be protected from seven known parasites that can harm them. When fish have parasites they are very contagious and must be separated from the other fish in the tank. The infected fish have to be treated and the tank completely disinfected.

The seven most common parasites you should know are:

  • Fish lice - these parasites are lice that attach themselves to the fish and can turn just about the same color as the fish so they are hard to detect. The fish will be rubbing up along side of the tank when infected with the lice in order to try to remove them.

  • Anchor worms – these parasites are females and have an anchor shaped head. They will bury themselves into the fish and there may be a little bit of bleeding on the fish where the head has attached itself. There also may be a little worm that is white that is coming out from that spot.

  • Leeches – these parasites are wormlike and attach themselves on both ends of the fish. You must remove these as soon as possible.

  • Flukes – these parasites are gill flukes that turn your fish’s gills a pink or red color. Your fish will tend to stay toward the surface of the tank where he is able to get air. These skin flukes can cause localized sores and swelling.

  • Ichthyophthirius – these parasites are known as Ich or white spot. You will be able to see a raised white spot on your fish that is about the size of a grain of salt. It is one of the most common types of parasites that are found.

  • Oodinium – these parasites are known as velvet and can create a golden velvet coat on the body and the fins of your fish. It is hard to find on gold fish because of the color.

  • Hexamita – these parasites are also known as hole in the head disease. They are basically internal parasites. These are harmful to your fish when he is weak because of age, stress or bad water conditions.

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