The whitespot myth

Practical Fishkeeping (UK) - - Marine -

While they are ex­cel­lent at re­mov­ing dead skin and pick­ing off isopods, flukes and var­i­ous other ec­topar­a­sites, it’s a mis­con­cep­tion that a cleaner wrasse can keep a tank whitespot-free. The feed­ing stages of Cryp­to­caryon ir­ri­tans ac­tu­ally bur­row into the host fish’s skin, mak­ing them dif­fi­cult for the wrasse to con­sume. Not only that, cleaner wrasses are un­able to deal with the mi­cro­scopic free-swim­ming in­fec­tive stage of this par­a­site, mak­ing them use­less against re­in­fec­tion. In short, if you’re eye­ing up a cleaner wrasse as a form of nat­u­ral whitespot con­trol, for­get it.

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