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dark patch on head? NOW WITH PHOTO

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hi guys one of my mpanga females (one that was recently holding) has developed a dark blackish patch on top of her head around where the top fin starts. and then theres black dots running from it down to its mouth. i have a feeling it may be black ich but im not sure if its natural colouration. anyways if someone could tell me wat it is that would be much appreciated and also if its a disease how to treat it.

cheers gurds

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it could be from stress??

Case in Point: Fish are badly ammonia burned by a filtration failure or inadequacy ---> A week later, after water quality is restored, the fish develop blackened areas, called a Melanophore Migration. Severe parasitisms can later cause blackening as the skin starts to heal. The blackening is not permanent, but may remain for two to four weeks before subsiding.

this could be it as i remember your dad saying your a bit lazy when it comes to looking after your water................


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Found this on a site re what Christo calls melanophore Migration

Common context:

� On bringing a fish home from the LFS.

� After replacing a filter suspected of poor efficiency.

� After adding medication that does not suit the fish.


Usually from a chemical or traumatic irritant or injury, due to:

� An ammonia surge (irritation)

� low pH (irritation)

� Fluke infestation (trauma)

� Ick or costia infection (trauma)

� Certain Medications (irritation).

I.e. If you bring a fish home from the LFS that has been kept in poor water conditions, and your tank water is far better, the black spots will appear as the fish heals.

Time frame:

Black spots come up over a period of 1-2 weeks, and after approx 7 days begin to fade, returning the fish to its normal colour. The black colouring appears as the fish heals, so its appearance is normally a sign that conditions have improved. Within 3 to 6 weeks the fish should be returned to normal colouration.


Check water quality. Make sure fish appear active and bright. Fins should be clear and dorsals raised. If all these areas are acceptable, then you just have to wait for the black spots to fade as the fish heals.

If the coloured areas are depressed or raised you may also be dealing with a bacterial infection or other problems, and further diagnosis is needed.

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