Do I Need To Quarantine New Fish? (3 Types of Quarantine)

By purchasing a new aquarium pet from a pet store, there is no guarantee that the fish will be completely Strong and healthy fish. Many infections cannot be detected at an early stage. And getting a sick individual into a common aquarium threatens the health of the rest of the inhabitants and the ecosystem as a whole. Quarantine for fish helps to minimize the development of a sad situation.

do i need to quarantine new fish

Do I Need To Quarantine New Fish?

When acquiring a new fish, it is impossible to understand whether it is a carrier of a disease or parasites. Aquarium fish can be latent disease carriers. And when changing place of residence, due to stress in aquatic pets, immunity usually falls, which guarantees the onset of infection and its transition from a latent state to an explicit one.

An infected, sick fish is a big threat to the entire aquarium residents i.e, fishes, plants, bacteria. In order to prevent the penetration of the disease to healthy pets, before moving new fish to the jar, they are kept in quarantine.

How Long To Quarantine New Fish?

On average, the duration of the quarantine is 2-5 weeks.

Moreover, the fish is not only kept in a separate container but also carefully monitored. And at the first manifestations of the disease, appropriate treatment is carried out. The quarantine is also used for “old” pets if they have any problems with their well-being.

how to quarantine new fish?

The capacity allocated for the quarantine differs from the usual aquarium in the conditions for keeping the fish. The main differences can be summarized as follows:

  • Small volume. The capacity of the quarantine will be calculated from the length of the individuals. For example, for large goldfish, a jar of 50-60 liters is needed, and for small barbs, 15-20 liters are enough.
  • Due to the small volume, the bottom soil is not placed in the quarantine. Plants are not planted there either. But for comfort, you can refine the container with artificial plants.
  • For quarantined fish, shelters are needed. Such places help pets survive stress and quickly adapt to new conditions. But put the shelters so that they do not obstruct the view and make it possible to constantly observe the fish.
  • A filter, a heater and a thermometer are becoming mandatory equipment for the quarantine. A cover for an aquarium with an installed lamp is also required.

If, after the required time has elapsed, the fish also remains shy, does not show activity, the quarantine time is extended and observation is continued. If any infection occurs, treatment is carried out in the same place, in the quarantine or in another bank.

To relieve the quarantined fish from unnecessary stress, place the quarantine in a quiet place.

During quarantine, the water in the tank is changed several times weekly. A good filtering system and aeration become necessary. It is not necessary to use activated carbon, as in classic cans. You can only treat the filter sponge well with an antiseptic and wash it under running warm water every 3-4 days.

What do you use to quarantine fish? ( 3 Types of Quarantine)

By the time the fish stay in quarantine, a short period (1.5-2.5 weeks) and a long one (1-3 months) are determined.

Fish from natural reservoirs are subjected to long-term quarantine.

A long time of monitoring them allows you to identify and get rid of all possible parasites, as well as to understand whether the fish have bacterial or viral infections.

For fish reared in aquarium conditions, the quarantine periods are usually short. Quarantine is also subdivided into varieties and according to the conditions of keeping new individuals there.


Provides for the implementation of various therapeutic and prophylactic procedures for aquarium pets that do not show signs of infection. With preventive isolation, the fish adapts to new conditions, gets rid of stress. Typically, the duration of the preventive quarantine is 1.5-2 weeks.


  • It is necessary to identify the symptoms of diseases in fish that are suspected of being infected (loss of appetite, lethargy). In passive quarantine, the fish is kept for about 3-4 weeks.
  • Moreover, she is not subjected to any treatment, including prophylactic ones. And they are waiting for the manifestation of more noticeable signs of the disease. If an infection is detected, the diseased individual is transferred to active quarantine conditions.

When the fish is in passive quarantine, it can be subjected to light antiparasitic treatment (for example, omnipur or melafix in preventive doses).


Provides for the treatment of diseased fish and their isolation from healthy relatives. Fish are subjected to medical procedures (their list depends on the identified disease):

  • antibiotic agents;
  • antiparasitic treatments.

The duration of active quarantine depends on the severity of the disease. After the end of the quarantine treatment, all equipment and accessories are disinfected.

It is better to make the capacity of the active quarantine in a multiple of 10. This will facilitate the task of calculating the medicinal dose during treatment.

What do you treat quarantine fish with?

If the quarantined fish is active and does not show unhealthy symptoms, then it does not need prevention.

what do you treat quarantine fish with

Healthy fish are sent to a common bank immediately after the end of quarantine.

When treating sick individuals, specialized medications are used. But for novice aquarists, the use of medication is not recommended. Instead, it is better to organize therapeutic baths for pets.


Water with a high salt concentration is an effective way to combat saprolegniosis (fungal infection) or ectoparasitic invasions:

  • trichodinosis;
  • bone disease;
  • oodiniumosis;
  • dactylogyrosis;
  • chylodonellosis;
  • tetrachimenosis;
  • apiosomosis;
  • hydrodactylosis;
  • trichodinosis.

It is easy to understand that the fish suffers from parasitic infestation. The diseased individual begins to intensively rub against the gravel, decoration elements, and its body becomes covered with whitish mucus. Sick fish avoid unnecessary movements and stick to the corners of the container or near the aerator. Saprolegniosis is manifested by the appearance of pubescent growths in the region of the lips and fins.

To carry out salt baths, the aquarist will need 3 containers. Water can be taken from a common aquarium or ordinary tap water, subjecting it to preliminary preparation:

  • warm up to + 80⁰С;
  • cool to the temperature of the aquatic environment in a common tank;
  • Aeration for 30-40 minutes.

A saline solution of 2% concentration (20 g of salt per 1 l of water) is poured into the first dish. The second container is filled with a weaker solution: 5 g of salt per 1 liter of water), and a little manganese is dissolved in the third jar until the water turns pale pink.

A sick individual is placed alternately in containers 1 and 2 and kept for 10-12 minutes in each. After the end of the salt baths, the individual in the net is transferred to a container with potassium permanganate and quickly rinsed and returned to the quarantine.

For a complete cure from infection, usually 2-3 measures are required with an interval of 2-3 days.

If the fish behaves sluggishly in a saline solution, turns over with its belly up, swims sideways, the procedure is terminated. This behavior indicates the wrong dosage of salt. When the concentration is correct, the fish behaves calmly.


Formalin is a powerful antiparasitic substance with a wide range of effects. To prepare a medicinal solution, 1 ml of formalin is dissolved in 5-6 liters of water. A sick individual is placed in a bath for 10-13 minutes. But, if the fish begins to show unusual behavior, the procedure is stopped immediately, and the fish is transferred to clean water.


Baths with the addition of ammonia are effective in the treatment of various ecoparasitic infections. For ammonia baths, 2 containers are required – one with an ammonia solution, in the other methylene blue is diluted.

To prepare an ammonia solution, take 8 liters of water and dissolve ammonia in them in a volume of 6.3 ml. Concentrated ammonia (25-27%) can be used instead of ammonia. In this case, 2.5 ml of concentrate is taken for 8 liters of water.

Ammonia is a toxic drug, therefore, when carrying out treatment, be very responsible in preparing the solution and the time of the procedure.

The temperature in the ammonia bath is set within + 18-25⁰С. The fish is placed in the solution for 20-25 seconds. Then it moves into a second container with methylene blue. The procedure is considered successful if the fish in the container with the dye begins to actively swim after 1-1.5 minutes.

How can fish disease be prevented?

Sometimes there are cases when the disease that the fish has cannot be determined. In this situation, various preventive baths are used.

Such measures are carried out immediately after the end of quarantine, before moving the fish to a common aquarium. New aquatic inhabitants undergo preventive antiparasitic treatment with one of the solutions:

  • Malachite green. The bath is made at the rate of 6 mg of dye per 10 liters of water.
  • Potassium permanganateProportions: 1 g of potassium per 10 liters of water.
  • Copper sulfate. 1 g of the substance is dissolved in 20 l of water.
  • Bicillin. Better to take Bicillin-5-50000BD. To prepare the solution, take 10 liters of water and an ampoule of the drug.

The fish is kept in solution for 10-15 minutes. Then it is transferred to clean water, where the remains of the bath are washed off. And the new pet is completely ready to move into a functioning aquarium.

Remember that every freshly bought aquarium fish can be a “time bomb”. In order not to expose your aquatic pets to biological danger, do not rush to add another aquarium inhabitant to them. And be sure to use preliminary quarantine measures.

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