Video: Apiosomosis Of Aquarium Fish
Until recently, causative agents of apiosis were considered harmless. These are ciliates of the genus Apiosoma, living on the upper layers of the fish epithelium. The length of their bodies ranges from 20 to 75 microns, which makes it extremely difficult to detect signs of apiosis at the initial stage. Strictly speaking, Apiosoma are not parasites, but symbionts, because they do not feed on tissues and do not harm fish.
They multiply by direct division, most actively at a water temperature of 22 ° C. A powerful stimulus for their reproduction is the saturation of the aquarium with organic waste and nutrients.
Large clusters of Apiosoma are easily identified by light clusters on the skin or fins of the fish. It is often considered a symptom of the more common ichthyophriosis and lymphocytosis. The former quickly spreads throughout the body and infects other fish; the emerging formations of the second have a spherical shape, sometimes resembling a bunch of grapes. The final diagnosis is made after microscopic examination.
Fish with apiosis. Photo by Craig Banner
Large colonies of ciliates on the gills disrupt the respiratory process and cause physiological hypoxia. Sometimes they can settle on damaged skin areas. The main harm of Apiosoma lies in the deformation of the epithelial cells, anxiety is observed in the behavior of the fish, they rub against the ground and vegetation.
The treatment of apiosomosis consists in the use of universal remedies that are offered by many manufacturers. For the appointment of special tools, a study with laboratory diagnosis of the disease is necessary.
Dmitry Dyukov, Director of the "Marine Aquarium on Chistye Prudy"