Fish Health - Fish Louse

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Fish louse or argulus looks like a small space ship. It can be seen with the naked eye, and swims in the water just like a remote control toy.

It has a complicated life cycle, which makes is a problem when treating. You have to destroy all stages of the life cycle together.

When feeding on fish with their beak like proboscis, the adult louse injects a poison to help digest tissue. This does great damage to the fish and in high numbers will be fatal.

This is mainly a spring problem. In 2005 and 2006 have been very bad years I've had many ponds and fisheries with this problem.

The main secondary infection is columnaris and is transported by birds bathing in waterfalls, un-quarantined fish and pond plants.

When fish are dipped in 3% salt, the fish louse will leave the fish and can be seen in container.

See our microscope page