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Fish Problems


Fungus and Bacteria

  • Cotton wool like growths
  • Fluffy grey / brown / white growths
  • Frayed tattered and blood streaked fins
  • Rotting around the mouth / fins

Fin and Mouth rot are caused by a bacteria. Fungus grows on broken and damaged skin

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Internal Bacteria

  • Pale gills
  • Protruding 'pop' eye
  • Red discolouration
  • Sores / ulcers
  • Swollen body, appearance of a pinecone

Internal bacterial infection caused by a variety of different bacteria which can present in several ways

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White Spot

  • Sugar grain size spots on surface
  • White spots on the skin

White spot or Ich is a common condition caused by a microscopic parasite

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Invisible Parasites

  • 1mm gold or yellow spots
  • Cloudy eyes
  • Fish colour has lightened / darkened
  • Patches of slime
  • Skin look velvety

Known as Slime or Velvet and caused by an invisible parasite

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Visible Parasite

  • Crustaceans or leeches clinging to fish
  • Lice, worms or flea like creatures attached to the skin or fins
  • Maggots in the gills

Parasites in your aquarium, act as soon as you can

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Body Deformities

  • Fish pox
  • Raspberry / Cauliflower like growths
  • Swellings
  • Tumours
  • Waxy lumps on the body

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Swim Bladder Infection

  • Can't maintain bouyancy
  • Leaning and swimming on it's side
  • Sinking / floating
  • Struggle to swim properly

Bacterial infection of the swim bladder or can be a genetic predisposition

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Appearing unwell but no physical symptoms

  • Clamped fins
  • Getting thin, losing weight, emaciation
  • No obvious physical symptoms
  • Seeming unhappy

Check your water quality by testing the water

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More than one symptom

  • Fish seem to have more than one thing wrong

Displaying more than one of the symptoms listed

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Unexplained death

  • Fish keep dying
  • Sudden and unexplained death of single or multiple fish

Test your water quality and read on for more advice on preventing fish deaths

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Aquarium Problems


Green Water

  • Can't see my fish through the water
  • Green, cloudy water
  • Water like pea soup

Over active production of algae

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Cloudy Water

  • Bits in my water
  • Floating dirt
  • Milky Water
  • Opaque water

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  • Dirty aquarium
  • Mud like material on my plants / ornaments / substrate
  • Waste build up in the corners of my aquarium

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Hair Algae

  • Green / Black / Brown in colour
  • Hairy algae on aquarium plants, substrate, glass and ornaments

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Plant Problems

  • Aquarium plants dying
  • Aquarium plants not growing or flowering
  • Leaves turning yellow

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Aquarium Snails

  • Lots of small snails on my plants and glass in my fish tank

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Dirty Ornaments

  • Algae won't come off my décor
  • Dirty slime / lime scale on my plastic plants and ornaments

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Water Levels

  • Adding water to an aquarium
  • Reduced water level
  • Topping up very often

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Water Quality Test Results


High Ammonia

  • Clamped fins
  • Fish are lethargic and look generally unwell or sick
  • Fish are not eating
  • Gasping at the surface
  • Red streaky gills
  • Sulking at bottom

I have tested my aquarium water for ammonia and the result is high. How do I reduce it?

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  • Fish become more susceptible to general illness and disease

I have tested my aquarium water for nitrate and the result is high. What do I do to reduce it?

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High Nitrite

  • Clamped fins
  • Gasping at the surface
  • Generally appear unwell
  • Rapid gill movement

I have tested my fish tank water for nitrite and the result is high. How do I reduce it?

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High pH

  • Fish appear to be in discomfort
  • Flicking against ornaments or rocks
  • Increase in green algal growth
  • Jumping

I have tested my fish tank water and the pH is high. How do I reduce it?

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Low pH

  • New fish die when introduced
  • Noticeable levels of ammonia and nitrite
  • Old tank syndrome

I have tested my aquarium water and the pH is low. What do I do to solve this?

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