Is API General Cure Safe for Shrimp? A Comprehensive Guide to Treating Fish Diseases with API General Cure

In the world of aquariums, fish diseases are a nightmare for the well-intentioned aquarist. In our struggle to keep our underwater habitats harmonious and pristine, it’s essential to have a first-aid kit that can handle whatever aquarium-calamities life might throw at us.

One popular medication is API General Cure, which has been lauded for its efficacy in tackling a host of common fish ailments. But, with keeping a diverse array of aquatic species in mind, many aquarists wonder if it’s shrimp-safe too. Dive in and discover what API General Cure is, how it works, and whether or not it’s safe for shrimp.

While API General Cure does what it says on the tin – providing a general treatment for common fish diseases – it’s not exactly a shrimp’s best friend. Nevertheless, since it’s not impossible to use it in a shrimp-inhabited tank, let’s examine the hows and whys of using API General Cure while keeping your invertebrates safe and sound.

Ready to dive into the medicinal depths of API General Cure? Let’s get swimming!

What is API General Cure?

API General Cure is a popular over-the-counter fish medication designed to treat a wide range of parasitic infections. It comes in powder form and contains two active ingredients:

  • Metronidazole: Effective against protozoans like Hexamita and flagellated parasites such as Hole-in-the-Head disease.
  • Praziquantel: A de-wormer that kills external and internal parasites, like gill and skin flukes, and tapeworms.
See also  What Causes White Spots on Nerite Snail Shells?

How does API General Cure work?

API General Cure combats parasitic infections by interfering with the parasites’ biochemistry, ultimately causing their demise. Metronidazole is absorbed by protozoans and disrupts their DNA, while praziquantel paralyzes tapeworms and other worms, making them unable to attach to the fish’s body.

Using API General Cure

Prior to using API General Cure, it’s essential to remove any chemical filtration (such as carbon or Purigen) from your aquarium. API General Cure is administered by adding pre-measured packets of the medication to the aquarium water, typically over two separate doses, 48 hours apart. After waiting another 48 hours, a large water change (25%-50%) is recommended.

Can shrimp share a tank during treatment?

While API General Cure is designed to treat fish diseases, shrimp are not its primary target. However, both active ingredients are thought to have some level of toxicity to invertebrates, such as shrimp. While it might not be fatal, it may cause negative side effects.

Keep your shrimp safe

When treating a fish-only aquarium, API General Cure poses no immediate concern. However, when shrimp are also present and must stay in the tank during treatment, caution is advised. To provide a safer environment:

  1. Remove shrimp to a temporary, well-oxygenated tank during treatment.
  2. Apply a lower dosage of API General Cure in the shrimp-inhabited tank.
  3. Avoid overdosing and maintain good water quality throughout the process.
  4. Perform regular water changes to remove residual medication.

Alternative treatments for shrimp-friendly tanks

If you’re unsure about using API General Cure with shrimp, consider alternative treatments that are proven safe for invertebrates, such as Seachem Paraguard. It’s a gentler medication that tackles various parasites and bacterial infections without harming your shrimp population.

See also  Is Your Freshwater Aquarium Suffering from Too Much Calcium? Learn How to Prevent Calcium Buildup!


  • Is API General Cure safe for shrimp?
    • API General Cure is not specifically designed for shrimp, and it may have some level of toxicity to invertebrates. It’s best to exercise caution and use alternative treatments whenever possible.
  • Can I remove my shrimp during treatment?
    • Yes, it’s recommended to move shrimp to a temporary, oxygenated tank during the treatment process to ensure their safety.
  • What are the alternatives to API General Cure for treating fish diseases in a shrimp-inhabited tank?
    • A safer alternative for shrimp-inhabited tanks is Seachem Paraguard, which can treat both parasitic and bacterial infections without harming shrimp.
  • What are some precautions to take when using API General Cure in a shrimp-inhabited tank?
    • Remove shrimp to a temporary tank, use a reduced dosage of the medication, avoid overdosing, maintain good water quality, and perform regular water changes to remove residual medication.
  • How long should I wait before reintroducing shrimp after using API General Cure?
    • After completing the treatment process, perform a large water change (25%-50%) and wait for 24 hours before reintroducing your shrimp.

In conclusion, while API General Cure is an effective remedy for parasitic infections in fish, it’s not explicitly formulated for shrimp. It’s important to be cautious when using it in a shrimp-friendly tank, and consider alternatives like Seachem Paraguard for a more shrimp-tolerant solution. Always prioritize the health and safety of all aquatic inhabitants in your aquarium, and be diligent about monitoring water quality and the well-being of your shrimp throughout the treatment process. Happy aquascaping!

Leave a Comment