April 4, 2024

Why is My Fish Turning White?

Everyone enjoys seeing vibrant, beautiful fish swim through their tank with grace and ease, but when one turns white it can be cause for alarm. This article demystifies "why is my fish turning white" by providing expert insight into its causes as well as advice for preventing and treating the condition.

Fish color is determined by chromatophores, pigment-containing cells found on its skin and fins. As fish age, their cells become smaller and spread out over a wider surface area, eventually losing its original hue - an aging process often caused by illness, stress or poor water quality - but may also result from disease or poor water quality conditions.

Stressed fish's hormone levels alter, altering its ability to produce color. This could be caused by overfeeding, poor water quality and disease; symptoms include lethargy, refusal to eat and pale skin.

An additional factor contributing to whitefish turning white can be lack of oxygen in its body, due to poor water quality, overcrowded tanks or rapid changes in tank chemistry. Signs include irregular swimming movements and difficulty breathing as well as gasping for air at the surface of the water.

Bacterial infections may also cause fish to turn white, which is usually a serious condition and treatable with antibiotics. Signs of infection include white deposits on their bodies and fins, cloudy eyes, tattered fins, open lesions (ulcers) on their faces or mouths as well as white film over most surfaces in their environment.

Passionate and knowledgeable aquartist. Aquariums have always fascinated me. I enjoy sharing and learning about the wonders of a fish tank.

Justin A