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We picked up our first bluegills 4 days ago and 2 days in we noticed what appear to be white fungus on the dorsal fins. Water quality is right on and clear. Me thinks it was on them from the fish farm. We salted them in a heavy salt solution upon arrival as the vendor suggested. They appear healthy otherwise. Here is a Youtube vid showing the growth. I don't see many pics around the net describing the various fish problems. Perhaps someone can help. I am about to calculate a salt dosage for the system which I hate to do as everything else is perfect.

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Jim, I threw you salt advice in the 4.33 pH thread. What concentration did you soak them in, and for how long?

Thanks for the reply Jon

I put about a # in about 5 gal and soaked for 2 min. I figure I should put 8.5 #s in my present 850 gal system.

Total gallons X 8 = total pounds of water, take that and multiply it by .00P (P=desired parts per thousand). So 850 gallons needs 20.4 lbs if salt to reach 3 ppt, or 34 lbs of salt to reach 5 ppt. Yes, that's a lot of salt, but it's cheap and effective and safe for you later on. For comparison, ocean salinity is 35 ppt, or 238 lbs if salt for your 850 gallons. Keep us posted how it goes.

Wow, Thanks Jon

Not sure if you really want to dose your whole system? Might be difficult for the plants. A separate tank would be nice, I cannot remember the percentage salt we used to use though.

Thanks Steve. I felt the same. I isolated the 2 ibcs by bypassing around them. (I am set up for 5 ibcs so plenty of choices) Just running plenty of air to them. Biggest problem is achieving the 80+ temps needed to push gestation of fungus. I was down to low 60's and attempting to go for cold tolerant species based around trout. The catfish still look good but they are down stream from the bgs so I salted them as well. Some bgs are still looking fine. Other bgs look bad but perhaps stable given the 4#s of salt for 200 gal. If I can hit 80F in there for a couple 3 days it might turn around. I think I will drain and fill the cats today and put them back online and do the same with the bgs in a few days rather than send all that salt down stream so to speak. I have the ibc drains all hooked to a 1 1/2" drain out the back door of the GH. It's all been fun and games up till this nonsense. Cats and trout sound pretty good right about now. I may catch my own healthy bgs locally in the future rather than purchase from a pea soup pond 3.5 hrs of driving away. I think they were very stressed before they were ever transported. Saw dead ones in the cage as we netted them. I had a local caught bg from a lake nearby in that ibc for 2 weeks happy and healthy so I suspect the fish farm vendor.  Learning:-)

Bummer and just one more reason to breed your own bluegill. 

I am going to throw them all in our pond today and get them out of the AP system. Another dead one this morning. Really sucks but on a brighter note the catfish from the same source are doing great. Shows how tough the cats are. Wild caught for me and yes breed them here. Perhaps they will do better in the pond. Trout are next in a 330 gal. Those are from a farm nearby and kept in a wild mountain stream. Very healthy looking. Perhaps next week. One has to be ready for trout. We will wash and bleach the BG tank and start that over when Southern States Feed comes around with fingerlings next. Might even try their BGs as a test of their quality or see what else they have. They visit their store locations every 6 weeks. Wish we knew that earlier.

Hey Jim, hope you're past the hump with those BG's. Just for the record, BG are very susceptible to stress, and wild caught are no different. Added to stress of being hooked or netted, wild will need to be feed trained, and have to adapt to tank life, so don't hold your breath on better results. I've had the best success with feed trained BG's netted once (not netted to a holding pond, netted into buckets, and netted out to final home), transported in 5 ppt salt with oxygen and ammonia pellets, and then added to stable, seasoned water. I ship my BG fingerlings all over that way, and usually have no subsequent stress problems. A recent shipment of 20 small BG and 2 cats took two days in the mail, and all went well (actually one died, but he may have been squished in netting)

Thank you Jon, that is very helpful. It sounds like I should avoid them for now. I remember growing up fishing and if we were skunked we could always bring home a Sunny Or BG. Kind of a junk fish if you will, so I somehow took that to mean they were bullet proof. Or I should say "assumed" with all the connotations that go along:-)

Oh man, I love bluegill, wouldn't call them a junk fish at all. I love how they attack flies, and mine feed almost exclusively on BSFL, making them the easiest fish I have to feed. But they are sensitive to stress and handling, so take a little prevention. They are larval spawners, meaning that the hatched eggs are too small to eat pellet food, no matter how small it is ground up. They need live zooplankton for the first 2-3 weeks of their lives in order to graduate to pellet feed, and for that reason they are best left in a pond to do it naturally, then scoop up a few for the tank once they are an inch or two. All of the sunfish family including bass are larval spawners, and best left to natural ponds. Actually, zooplankton can be cultivated in tanks, but it is a substantial extra step for the backyard grower. Tilapia, catfish, trout and sturgeon are larger egg layers, and the "swim-up" fry can eat pellet feed immediately. Big plus there. 

Wild bluegill in ponds seem to be easily trained to pelleted food.  You could go to such a pond to catch your fish.

Or, catch a few regular wild bluegill and take them home.  I imagine they'll take pelleted food before starving to death.  If not, you won't lose much by trying.

It's neat to watch them eat any live food.  They really mean business.

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