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Argulosis of fishes: description of the parasite and methods of fighting it

Argulosis is a parasitic disease of aquarium dwellers, which is caused by tiny Argulus crustaceans. Even in the common people of this parasite is called fish louse or carpoedum.

The body of the parasite is oval in shape and slightly flattened at the sides. Thanks to four swimming legs and two suckers, the parasite also attaches to the carrier.

Unlike other parasites living in aquariums, carpedoids are not permanent parasites. When they suck blood, they leave their victim and float away. There are special blind outgrowths in the intestines of the carpoed, thanks to which it accumulates sucked blood.

Due to these stocks, the karpoed can not eat for several weeks, spending at this time its world reserves.

Despite the fact that the parasite has eyes, they do not carry any useful function, like other developed living creatures. In general, vision is necessary to determine the level of light intensity in an aquarium, which is directly related to the ambient temperature.

In those places where most of the world, will be warmer, that in the hands of karpoedam. When searching for the victim’s eyes do not perform any function.

They are orientated in the carpedo space thanks to numerous bristles that react to the slightest movement of water. Alternatively, you can conduct a simple experiment.

Take a strip of paper, put it in a container with parasites and move it in the water. You can see how the crustaceans attack the paper. As soon as they touch her, they immediately depart.

But, if you rub the paper in advance on the fish, then the carpedoids will linger on a piece of paper a little longer, until your catch is revealed.

When a parasite pursues a fish, it moves after it or in parallel, and then sits on its head. The parasite moves without problems along the body of the fish in search of body areas that are less washed by water and are located behind the gill covers and pectoral fins.

In these places, the skin is much thinner than near the tail or on the back. When the parasite attaches to the fish, they continue to actively work with their legs, creating a weak current of water, which is necessary for breathing.

During the mating season, the males fertilize the females adhering to the fish, holding them on the body of the victim with the help of the chest legs. After fertilization, the females stick out from the fish and go in search of aquatic vegetation, stones, snags and other substrates, where they will lay up to three hundred eggs and glue them with the help of a special substance.

A few weeks later, depending on the temperature in the aquarium, small crustaceans will hatch from the eggs. And although their swimming legs are not yet developed, they move perfectly in the water with the help of long rear antennas. With the help of antennas and spines on the front jaw, tiny crustaceans attach to their victims.

For a week, parasites can shed twice, after which the length of the rear antennas decreases and the length of the swimming legs increases. In the period between the third and fifth molts, the front jaws are transformed into suckers, after the formation of which the crustacean becomes sexually mature.

That is, it can produce new generations of parasites.

The whole development cycle of a carpoed at a water temperature of 10 to 20 degrees is from a month to two. At a water temperature of 21 to 28 degrees, the female parasite can bring 6-7 generations per year. If we consider the reproduction of carpids in the aquarium, then such developments were not observed, because if all the fish die, the crustaceans will have nothing to eat.

Karpoedam do not care who their victims are and they have no preferences for a certain type of fish, tritons or tadpoles can fall under the distribution.

When the parasite attaches to its victim, it pierces the skin of the fish with the help of its proboscis and begins to suck blood. To prevent blood from coagulating, the crayfish injects a special secret from the poison gland into the wound.

The inflammatory process begins to develop at the site of the bite and the wound is bleeding. In this meta, a small ulcer appears, into which another infection falls.

Chlorofol and karbofos help to fight with arguments. But be careful, because using these drugs in therapeutic dosage you can destroy all invertebrates, and even fish they are harmful.

Chlorophos is introduced into the aquarium with the proportion of 1 g per 100 liters of water per day, after which the water must be replaced in the aquarium with fresh water.

Karbofos is introduced into the aquarium, taking into account the proportion of 0.01 g per 100 liters of water for a day, after which the water in the aquarium also changes. This preparation cannot be used if the active response of the medium in the aquarium is over 8.0 pH and the temperature is above 30 degrees.

For preventive purposes, it is necessary to ensure that crustaceans and their larvae do not enter the aquarium. In the warm season, the parasite can get into the aquarium with live food (cyclops and daphnia), and the eggs of the crustaceans along with stones, driftwood and plants.

Snags and stones can be dried within 12 hours and the eggs will be destroyed.

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