Hello all, Thought I would post an update. I had two LSS (Penang Eruptions), that were juveniles and I was growing them out. After a couple of months in the grow out tank I moved them to the main tank. Everyone did fine - I had lost a golden based red diamond and a pearl pigeon blood to bacterial infection while I was traveling for work a few months back - so there was only 2 RTs in the main tank (a 55 - I haven't setup the 75 yet). It's been about 7 months or more and everyone was fine. Then - all the others started picking on the best of the two Eruptions. The one I posted a picture of not too long ago. I divided the tank, mixed up decorations etc etc. All the usual advice. Things got better then got worse and what would have been a great fish - ended up not growing to it's full potential. The bullying deprived it of food - and kept it stressed. I guess that's they way it goes in nature but does it always have to be on our 'favorite fish'?

Anyway - it stopped eating and got pretty thin. I scoped a few times and didn't see much but thought I'd try Dimetryl+ instead of the usual metronidazole this time and see what happened. I dosed the same as metro, but only for 7 days (with a break in between and a water change prior to redose.) Everyone was back to eating quite well and back to bullying 'my favorite' - they made it through the toxicity of Dimetryl+ - I guess the plus part really worked. Scoped - saw nothing. Finished off with a normal dose of metro and all looked good. Next day - all is well. Next morning - one dead LSS caught behind the spray bar. Too much for it I suppose in it's weakend state. If the Dimetryl+ didn't kill it I figured the other fish eventually would stress it to death anyway.

So back to three in the 55 - everyone is happy and eating like mad - begging for food whenever anyone walks by the tank - eating out of my hand for some of Al's Freeze Dried Blackworms. 2 days go by and last night, before stepping out, I stuck 2 cubes of FDBW with spinach to the front glass of the tank, they went nuts as usual, and I went out for about 3 hours. Came home to all three fish looking bad. Sitting on the bottom, listing over to one side, swimming sideways --

Checked the parameters - NH3=0, NO2 = 0, NO3 = 5ppm, pH is stable at 7.8 as usual. I'm thinking something got into the water. Pumped out 90% and replaced it with aged, heated and aerated water from my holding tank. After 60 minutes with the lights off - everyone springs back to life. ***? I'm on well water that is filtered through an HMA filter and aged for 48 hours with heat and aeration. Never happened before - ruled out the source water and parameters as the culprit. Asked the wife all the usual questions about sprays etc etc. I was home - I would have seen something.

Only thing I can think of is something on my hands when I put the food on the front glass of the tank. I came home from work that day - wearing a long sleeve dress shirt - and checked on my son who was spraying a trailer he is rebuilding for a friend with some rust proofing primer through my air compressor paint sprayer. I walk over to check it out and see how it's coming - staying up wind (although there really wasn't any wind) - chatted for few and head in to change from work. It's possible, I guess, that some of the primer in a fine unnoticeable mist, got on my hands. About an hour later, fed the fish without washing my hands (which I do most of the time) - and left to get some chow at UNOs with my wife and son.

Very strange - must have been something on my hands - I just don't know what. I did have a band-aid on my finger with neosporin (topical antibiotic) on a popped blister (burned my hand with a new lighter while lighting a really nice cigar). I can't imagine that had anything to do with it. I always wash my hands after I'm in the water - and usually before putting my hands in the water but didn't do that this time.

Lesson Learned. Wash your hands.