Using Lugol's Iodine Solution As a Coral Dip, Supplement & Medication


Lugol's Solution Iodine Coral DipLugolís solution is one of the oldest, most common, and most versatile aquarium additives. It's a highly concentrated form of iodine that can serve a few useful roles in a reef aquarium. We carry Brightwell Aquatics Lugol's Solution.

Lugolís as a Supplement

Lugolís solution is most commonly used to supplement the aquarium with iodine and iodate. This has a wide variety of benefits. Maintaining proper iodine levels encourages crustaceans to molt, it encourages the growth and polyp extension of soft corals such as leather corals, mushroom corals, and zooanthid polyps, and it can lead to more colorful stony corals (particularly pink, red, and orange corals). You can use Lugolís iodine to supplement however the form of iodine in Lugolís solution is volatile and does not stay in seawater very long. With Lugols you should dose every day to every other day. Some products such as Brightwell Aquatics Iodion Liquid Iodine Supplement use a more stable iodine that can be dosed less frequently.

Lugolís as a Coral Dip

The second most common use for Lugolís solution is as a coral dip. Lugolís solution is an excellent disinfectant which makes it a great choice for treating bacterial infections on corals. Manufacturer's recommendations vary, but a typical Lugolís dip involves 40 drops of Lugolís solution per gallon of tank water. Once the solution has been mixed and prepared, the infected coral should be placed in the solution for approximately 10 minutes. While dipping the coral it helps to use a small pump or turkey baster to gently blow water over the infected area. After the time is up the coral can be removed and returned to the tank.

It is also wise to use a Lugolís dip on corals and anemones that have been recently fragged. When a coral is fragged it has an open wound on its body and there is a risk that the wound can get infected. Lugolís solution can help sterilize the wound to prevent infection. Many believe a Lugolís dip can help a newly fragged coral encrust and start growing faster.

If you want the benefits of an iodine dip but with some added antiparasitic effects Two Little Fishies Revive is a dip that has iodine as one of the primary ingredients but it also includes oils that can help to remove larger parasites from coral such as flatworms or nudibranchs.

Lugolís as a Fish Medication

Lugolís solution can also be used to treat bacterial infections on fish. If you have ever seen a fish with a cloudy eye or pop eye this is often a form of bacterial infection of the fishís eye. If the infection progresses then it is possible that the fish could go blind and eventually die. One way of treating these infections is to net the fish and partially pull them out of the water. Then drop a drop of Lugolís solution on the infected eye. This can be particularly stressful on smaller fish, but it is also one of the best ways to cure eye infections in larger fish. Lugolís can also be dripped on fish that have open wounds to prevent infection. Once again, the fish needs to be netted and partially pulled out of the water before Lugolís is dripped on the wound. Then the fish can be returned to the water. If open wounds get infected it can often lead to a dead fish.

If netting the fish out of the water is too difficult and the fish is still eating using an oral antibiotic may work better. You can use Seachem Focus to bind Seachem Metroplex to fish food. This way your fish will get antibiotics in their diet and you wonít have to net the fish which can be stressful.

Consider adding Lugolís solution to your arsenal of aquarium supplements. It is one of the most useful and effective supplements which has passed the test of time.