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How to Treat Ciliate Microscopic Parasites in Freshwater Aquarium Fish

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How to Treat Ciliate Microscopic Parasites in Freshwater Aquarium Fish

This section itemizes a few considerations and the best medicines to use for these parasites.

  1. If the tank is live-planted, I like Formalin/Malachite and PraziPro. Why aren’t these redundant? When ARE they redundant?
  2. If the tank is NOT live-planted, I like salt and PraziPro.

Live plants present a significant limitation.

There are a lot of things to know, and consider like temperature, and the wisdom of removing plants or not….You kind of NEED to listen to the following podcasts if they apply to your situation.

The following recording is a podcast on treating microscopic, ciliated protozoans like Ich, Costia, Chilodonella and Trichodina in freshwater fish tanks WITHOUT aquatic plants.

No plant – ciliate treatments

The following podcast addresses the treatment of microscopic, ciliated protozoans like Ich, Costia, Chilodonella and Trichodina in freshwater fish tanks *WITH* aquatic plants.

With plants – ciliate treatments

Medications that work for microscopic parasites and flukes

Salt
0.3% to 0.6% works pretty well in the absence of aquatic plants (kills plants) for many ciliate protozoan parasites. Run it about 7 -10 days at 78 degrees F. 
Water softener salt (you HAVE to read the ingredients to see 100% Sodium Chloride C.A.S. 7645-14-5 
Which is fine unless you really won't use 40 pounds LOL
At that rate look at the 4-5 pound boxes of Morton salt. 

Formalin Malachite 
Ecological Labs does this called BSDT (Broad Spectrum Disease Treatment) which is a hi-test strength and the one-gallon size is only twice as expensive as the 16 ounce size so get the gallon and share with the club LOL. 
Dose per label instructions once a day x 4 days, skip a day and then dose one more time. 

Pro-Form-C
...is a 22% strength Formalin Malachite treatment I've liked for a long time. It's 22% to avoid some 'shipping complications. It works well. It's priced competitively as right you see a 32 ounce bottle for what, $45? The gallon is about twice that. 

A third kind of Formalin Malachite
Paraguard is a good "formalin" malachite green mixture. I've used it successfully. But it's not "formalin" but in fact another aldehyde that is supposedly "gentler" and this is a 10% solution. So follow label instructions. Dose daily x 4 days skip a day and dose one more time. 

If you want to treat Flukes concurrently?
PraziPro by Hikari is fine to use along side salt and it's a way to extend the kill spectrum of salt into Flukes. I'd mention that it SHOULD NOT BE NEEDED alongside formalin & malachite as the combination is redundant to control Flukes. Means, one, or the other will handle flukes. 
Salt will not usually work on Flukes.