wcm minnow with kinked tail, swimming down - serious? - TB!?

(8 Posts)
soundedbetterinmyhead Mon 08-Jul-13 19:23:41

Hello fish people - I have had 11 minnows in a 60 litre tank for about 18 months. I now have one which has developed a kink in his tail and has started swimming down, rather than across the tank. He's eating fine and quite lively. The others seem fine. I have just googled and there is stuff about fish with bent tails having TB and that the water is dangerous to humans. This has freaked me a bit, as I have just done a water change and cleaned the filters and just washed my hands with soap afterwards...should I be worried, either about the fish, or myself? I wish I hadn't searched now. If someone could advise, that would be great - thank you.

EauRouge Mon 08-Jul-13 22:59:06

Fish TB is transferable but it doesn't turn into human TB- more likely you'd just get a really nasty skin infection. If you've given yourself a good scrub then I'm sure you'll be fine.

A kinked tail doesn't necessarily mean TB- normally the giveaway signs are a concave stomach, arched back and generally looking a bit ropey. I'd keep an eye out but there are lots of other causes of a kinked tail. From what you've said I wouldn't automatically think it was TB.

soundedbetterinmyhead Tue 09-Jul-13 07:51:02

Thanks Eau, that's a relief. Do you know of a reliable online place to find out about illnesses and treatments?

EauRouge Tue 09-Jul-13 08:09:41

There are some really good fish forums, but a lot of really crap ones as well. I'd prob try Fishkeeping, forum.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/PFK, or Seriously Fish.

EauRouge Tue 09-Jul-13 08:17:11

Sorry, link fail- PFK

EauRouge Tue 09-Jul-13 13:41:59

I did a bit more reading up in case anyone's freaking out about the TB thing. Human TB is caused by a small number of Mycobacterium species, none of which are the same as the one that causes fish TB (which is Mycobacterium marinum). It is transferable to humans, but not in the form of human TB. The risk is pretty tiny though, I've been keeping fish for years and chatting with hundreds of other fish geeks and I only know one person personally that got it (he has hundreds of fish so spends a fair portion of his time up to his elbows in fish poo).

If you did get a myco marinum infection, it can be serious so another reason to only stick a part of your body into an aquarium if you absolutely have to (and not if you have open wounds), keep your fish healthy and wash your hands thoroughly after cleaning your tank. You can use elbow-length gloves if you're worried.

Bet that'll put a few people off those fish pedicures!

EauRouge Tue 09-Jul-13 14:00:23

Obv. that case is extreme, most people recover once they get a diagnosis.

soundedbetterinmyhead Sat 13-Jul-13 18:43:56

Thanks Eau, I will have a look at the forums about what might be wrong with the fish, I have another one with a kinky tail now, so I am not sure what is going on!

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