Life after antibiotics

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Hi. I’d love some advice please. I have a small pond that had a perfect storm of events - some over eager gardeners cleaned out the sump without turning off the filter so it clogged full of muck from the bottom of the sump, I got super sick and didn’t get out to the pond to notice/clean it and my kids were over feeding the fish as we have one with no tail and they wanted to make sure he was fed.

This led to a massive overgrowth in algae and terrible chemistry and by the time I got well enough to come out a few of my fish have tail rot.

I’ve vacuumed the bottom, done a PP treatment and antibiotics (Melafix) and had to clean the filter through about ten times meaning the water in the pond is now new (added lots of stresscoat). Any good bacteria has been wiped out.

So how do I get it running well again and avoid new pond syndrome? I have nowhere else to put my fish.

Any advice is appreciated. I’m still learning about pond chemistry and how it all works.
 
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What are you water test results?

I don't see any reason your beneficial bacteria should have been killed off. Why do you feel that is the case?

Just so you know, Melafix is useless. It has been shown to be ineffective. No need to waste any more money on that.
 

j.w

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@Bridget
What were your terrible chem results?
@WaterGardener could the use of anti-bio-tic's kill off the good bacteria?
 

j.w

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Hi. I’d love some advice please. I have a small pond that had a perfect storm of events - some over eager gardeners cleaned out the sump without turning off the filter so it clogged full of muck from the bottom of the sump, I got super sick and didn’t get out to the pond to notice/clean it and my kids were over feeding the fish as we have one with no tail and they wanted to make sure he was fed.

This led to a massive overgrowth in algae and terrible chemistry and by the time I got well enough to come out a few of my fish have tail rot.

I’ve vacuumed the bottom, done a PP treatment and antibiotics (Melafix) and had to clean the filter through about ten times meaning the water in the pond is now new (added lots of stresscoat). Any good bacteria has been wiped out.

So how do I get it running well again and avoid new pond syndrome? I have nowhere else to put my fish.

Any advice is appreciated. I’m still learning about pond chemistry and how it all works.
So all your old water has been removed? You say all the water in the pond now is new water. Well then maybe that's the problem. The fish are all shocked due to stress and now the pond will have to recycle?
 
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There is very little beneficial bacteria in the water. It grows mostly on solid surfaces like filter media or rocks, so changing 100% of the water would have very little effect on that.

I still see no reason that the bacteria would have been killed off. But the fish have probably been very stressed by the poor water conditions.

Get the water fixed and the fish should be able to heal themselves. They can't improve in bad water.
 
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What are you water test results?

I don't see any reason your beneficial bacteria should have been killed off. Why do you feel that is the case?

Just so you know, Melafix is useless. It has been shown to be ineffective. No need to waste any more money on that.
Hi. My chemistry is now perfect. I assumed the PP and Melafix would kill all the good bacteria along with the bad like antibiotics do with humans.
 
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So all your old water has been removed? You say all the water in the pond now is new water. Well then maybe that's the problem. The fish are all shocked due to stress and now the pond will have to recycle?
No the new water isn’t the problem. The fish are very happy.

Perhaps I didn’t explain it well enough. I’m trying to prevent a future issue caused by the pond bacteria being killed off by antibiotics and potassium permanganate. Surely if I’ve killed off all the bacteria in the pond then the pond needs to build that up again essentially creating new pond syndrome.
 
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There is very little beneficial bacteria in the water. It grows mostly on solid surfaces like filter media or rocks, so changing 100% of the water would have very little effect on that.

I still see no reason that the bacteria would have been killed off. But the fish have probably been very stressed by the poor water conditions.

Get the water fixed and the fish should be able to heal themselves. They can't improve in bad water.
Will their tails recover? They have opaque white/red streaks on them now. Does that go away?
 
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Good to hear that your water is back on track. Neither of those products you used is an antibiotic so there was no problem.

You are correct that true antibiotics will kill your beneficial bacteria. So if you need to treat a sick fish with an antibiotic, it is best to remove that fish from the pond and treat it in a hospital tank.

If you keep the water in great shape, the fish have a good chance of healing on their own. I would give them a little time to see if they are improving. If not, then you can consider treating them again.
 
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Thank you. They are super happy and their usual STARVING selves this morning lol. They are not going to like the reduced diet they are now on!
 

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I had a bad experience years ago with toxic water flowing into my pond. Massive fish kill and the few that were left had bad fin and tail rot. We treated with melafix and pimafix several times and most fish totally recovered. One koi had nothing left of her tail but a bloody stump. She regrew a tail but it's only about 1 1/2". She does well, she's our top breeding female.
 
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I found fin rot to have been mainly attributed to a low ph and KH along with the fin rot . As i dosed a batch of baking soda boosting the ph and kh aND THEY FUZZY SPOTS AND FIN ROT DISAPEARED NO CHEMICALS
 

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