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SALT


Snowflake
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The cells of most vertebrates, including fish, contain about 0.9% NaCl, (9g/L). For freshwater fish, this means that their cells contain a higher concentration than the surrounding water. By the process of osmosis, water will constantly enter the fish's body via the gills and mucus membranes to dilute the salt. Therefore, freshwater fish drink very little and urinate often. If the fish is stressed and the respiration rate is high, more water will be taken-up. Similarly, if the waterproof layers of the fish's body are broken, this also allows excess water to enter putting additional workload on the kidneys. This can lead to further stress and renal failure (and death). Salinity tolerance varies between species. In the River Murray, Callop can almost tolerate pure sea water, but Murray Cod become stressed above about 0.4% NaCl. A water concentration above 0.9% will cause water to exit the body and lead to dehydration. For fish with external parasites or open wounds, the addition of some salt to their water will greatly reduce the complications of excess water uptake. 0.7% allows the kidneys to function at a reasonable level, dehydration is avoided and water uptake is minimal. However, this concentration is only a guide and you need to test it for your particular species. Keith

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Re: bettas.. I used to use it, after I ran out, then it became habit not to use it and they are fine without it. I do recall a time with touchy bettas, I would always use salt. All other fish (minus non tolerant fish like cories etc) Salt is used in QT when fish have visable signs of legions, sores etc. only. Guppies in QT: I use this when worming guppies when they have arrived, everytime. My preference :)

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I have been using it routinely in all my tanks, but can't see that it's done a bit of good and may have caused problems, since I've had ongoing hassles with disease. So, I'm phasing out salt in my tanks and will reserve its use for treatment of specific problems in future. I'll let the forum know if I notice an improvement in health in my bettas.

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I use aquarium salts, the blue salts, and I rarely have any betta or goldfish diseases. I use a quarter tsp per 10L waterchange bucket. Same dosage for the bettas and the goldfish. Before I started using it I lost a lot of goldfish fry and one new betta, since then nothing. Melbourne water is very good but still I attribute a lot of the good health to the salt.

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by the bucketload! Only for secondary fish though, not the primaries. I use it at 0.3% for all shipped fish and anything arriving into quarantine. For livebearers, at least double that. As Keith mentioned, it greatly helps with osmotic regulation during times of stress. High concs also help cure some ills, can prevent parasites and bacteria getting a hold. As a tonic, it's great for bettas and goldfish - helps thicken the slime coat (acts as a mild irritant) which in turn helps keeps the bugs at bay. If you have a nice isolated system and don't introduce non-quarantined fish the addition of salt is probably not a requirement. Some betta breeders feel it helps thickent the rays on CT. Cheers, J

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