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External Parasites, External Problems, And Discus Medication

by | Apr 30, 2020 | 9 comments

Body Slime From Bacteria Build Up

One problem that we always have with discus is that we start seeing the body slime start to build up. That is usually caused by external bacteria building up in the system. External bacteria are going to build up in a system, whether we want to or not. Obviously, the more water changes that we do, the more maintenance that we do, the lower we can keep that bacterial count.

Eventually, it starts to build up when people move gravel around, things around, the next thing you know, the discus start to slime up, they start to pinch their fins, the eyes start to get cloudy. When you see that happen, that is usually a sign of external problems. In most cases, the discus does not stop eating because it is an external problem. It is like whacking your finger with a hammer. Of course, you are going to be hungry. It is going to hurt like crazy, but you are not going to lose your hunger over it.

Seachem ParaGuard

How do we take care of this? There is many, many ways, many. We have used in the past and we recommend to our clients, a product from Seachem called ParaGuard. You got to do a three-day full treatment. Follow the dosage and do a full day treatment. We currently have it on our website while it lasts.

Acriflavine Neutral Discus Medication

I have been criticized for raising discus in antifreeze because people often see the green water in our tanks. The green water is Acriflavine Neutral Discus Medication.

It is available on our website. It’s very simple to use. It is three grams for a 120-gallon tank. If you want to break it down, it’s one gram for 40 gallons. That stuff is amazing. Not just for incoming fish but when things like this happen, also a quite easy fix. That is available on our website and we use that with salt.

Used with Non-Iodized Salt

With salt, we use either aquarium salt, rock salt which is what we use here at the hatchery because we use it in our water softeners.

Any salt which does not contain iodine and what you want to do is you want to use one tablespoon for every 40 gallons in with the Acriflavine. It is a combination of the two products. What happens is when you add salt to the water, remember these are freshwater fish, the salt dehydrates them just like it dehydrates us. Basically, they start to build up even more body slime. When they do that, they excrete the bacteria.

Now think about it, while the bacteria are inside the body, it’s protected from all external attacks of medication. Once you add the salt in there, that bacteria are secreted out, and guess what is waiting for it outside? Acriflavine Neutral. It will wipe everything out. It will clean it. Fish with sores on them, it will help them heal because it’ll kill the bacteria that’s creating the sore, many things.

It Will Not Cure Flukes

It’s not good for flukes. It will not do anything for flukes but anything else like buildup of body slime, Acriflavine is the way to go.

You move fish around, they get battered, you put Acriflavine. Why? Just like you put a little antiseptic cream on your cuts and bruises or burns, so that you do not get a secondary bacterial infection. It is the same principle. We have been using Acriflavine forever. Let me tell you something, all these remedies, and all these medications that I’m offering you have been around for 40-50 years.

We cannot forget history.

Some of the guys that are pioneers in the industry have been using this stuff forever. If I do not talk about it, it’s going to be a forgotten cause, so this is why I’m bringing you all this information, so you guys could take advantage of it. I use it every single day, in my hatchery, in my operation. I am bringing these ideas to you guys to help you guys out. Remember, that is what these videos are for. They are to help you out, so you can enjoy your discus more.


There’s many other products that we use. Fin rot, we talked about Oxytetracycline. Fin rot is caused primarily by anaerobic bacteria. That is the same bacteria that builds up underneath your gravel.

Gravel Bottom Tanks VS Planted Tanks

That’s why you see that a lot of guys are not using gravel anymore. Listen, if you keep your gravel clean, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have it in there.

I personally do not like walking into somebody’s house whose tank looks like my hatchery, very sterile. We must have sterile tanks with bare bottoms because we do massive water changes daily, because we keep a lot of discus in our tanks. In your case, you want something beautiful, something with plants. Your fish will do fine just make sure you clean your gravel well.

If you have plants, if you have carpeting plants, everybody knows, once they root, they go four inches down into that gravel. They are not going to come right up. Siphon on top of them. If you take a couple of them, big deal, they are going to go right back. It is like cutting the grass outside, same principle. Keep it nice and clean to avoid all these problems. When the problems do occur, we have the medications for you to use them, and we are showing you how to do it.

We are hoping all these videos bring you closer to happiness with your fish. Also, it’s helping us because by you guys looking at these videos, you’re not calling us every five minutes with these problems. We are hoping that you will catch the problem before it turns into something more crucial. That is what these videos are designed for. We hope you enjoy them. We thank you for watching.

Please do not forget, all the medications are available on our website if you need them. We are here for you.


  1. Chamara

    Very good

  2. Rob

    HI, When using Acriflavine Neutral Discus Medication for new fish, how often should you repeat the dosage and for how many days? Do you do daily water changes during the treatment or wait until thetreatment is complete to change water?

    • Gabe Posada

      One time is sufficient as a preventative.

  3. ROGER maberto

    oxitetracycycoline … is this the same as Acriflavine ? is not I do not see it on your website
    Thanks Gab,
    Roger M.

  4. Bob B

    What treatment would you recommend to treat columnaris? I have tried everything but no luck. My discus tank got infected from another tank. I keep my discus in clean bare bottomed tank with daily water cleaning and changes.

  5. Mario

    I’m from lakeland Florida. I have been using Mr Gabriel for 2 years the guy is great and every time. you call he is there to help, you should also look at his videos. They are very educational.

  6. Timothy

    Dear Jack wattley discus,
    I have 4 stendker discus, of which one unproven male has recently obtained a abnormally swollen reproductive/private part, (10x) the size of that of a discus that is not breeding. They are all eating healthy and are colourfull and fully grown. Should I be worried about an external disease or is this rather something internal or a disformaty?
    kind regards,

    PS. I love your youtube videos

    • Wattley Discus Admin

      Thanks for the love!
      I would need to see photos…
      Have you checked with the breeder you purchased them from?


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