Re:Sick female?

#4958
Pete Giwojna
Guest

Dear holdyourhorses:

Yes, I believe the product you found should work well. As long as it’s designed for aquarium use, any type of methylene blue is useful. Just avoid methylene blue that includes zinc — the best methylene blue products are zinc-free.

Nope, you need be concerned about exposing adult seahorses to the air. That’s something that must be avoided with the newborns, but you do not have to keep juvenile or adult seahorses submerged when transferring them. This is what I normally advise home aquarists with regard to handling your seahorses, sir:

Handling Seahorses

I do not like to use an aquarium net to transfer or manipulate seahorses, since their delicate fins and snouts can become entangled in the netting all too easily. I much prefer to transfer the seahorses by hand. Simply wet your hand and fingers (to avoid removing any of the seahorse’s protective slime coat) and scoop the seahorses in your hand. Allow them to curl their tail around your fingers and carefully cup their bodies in your hand to support them while you lift them out of the water. When you gently immerse your hand in the destination tank, the seahorse will release its grip and swim away as though nothing out of the ordinary has happened.

Composed of solid muscle and endowed with extraordinary skeletal support, the prehensile tail is amazingly strong. Indeed, large specimens have a grip like an anaconda, and when a 12-inch ingens or abdominalis wraps its tail around your hand and tightens its hold, its vise-like grip is powerful enough to leave you counting your fingers afterwards!

In fact, it can be quite difficult to remove an attached seahorse from its holdfast without injuring it in the process. Never attempt to forcibly detach a seahorse from its hitching post! When it feels threatened, it’s instinct is to clamp down and hold on all the tighter. When you must dislodge a seahorse from its resting place for any reason, it’s best to use the tickle technique instead. Gently tickling the underside of the tail where it’s wrapped around the object will usually induce the seahorse to release its grip (Abbott, 2003). They don’t seem to like that at all, and will quickly let go to move away to another spot. Once they are swimming, they are easy to handle.

Before placing your hands in the aquarium to do any maintenance or to handle your seahorse for handfeeding or to administer treatments or transfer a pony from one tank to another, it’s a good idea to wash up first. I will generally give my hands a quick wash and then a very thorough rinsing. I like liquid soaps in general better than bar soaps for this (the liquid soaps usually rinse off better and eliminate the possibility that a residue of soap might be left beneath your fingernails). But if my hands are reasonably clean (not oily or greasy and I have not been handling pesticides or herbicides or other toxic chemicals) then I will often skip the soap altogether and simply rinse my hands well under hot water before placing them in the aquarium. The rinsing is the most important part, particularly if you soap. Rinse thoroughly, and then when you’re certain you’ve rinsed enough, rinse your hands once again to make doubly sure.

Best of luck easing the respiratory distress of your female seahorse.

Respectfully,
Pete Giwojna


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