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Old 08-09-2012, 01:25 PM   #11 
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Sorry your guy isn't doing so well..
You will want to remove him and place him in a hospital tank. Unsure exactly what is going on since there isn't any background and such on the actual problem, nor is there anything else listed as symptoms.. I can only recommend treatment to help keep the area clean and to help heal it quicker-
1tsp of AQ salt (+ water conditioner) per gallon, daily 100% water changes for no longer then 10 days. That tends to help keep bacteria away from any open wounds and helps to heal external problems quicker.
If there are other symptoms present, or become present such as lethargy, gasping, darting, etc then let us know. But for now, the best treatment for him is AQ salt, anything else then you are going to end up causing more problems then he can handle :(

Also, looks to be a halfmoon, but since his tail isn't fully open I can't be 100%, also he is a multicolor.
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Old 08-09-2012, 01:27 PM   #12 
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Originally Posted by Dragonfly3 View Post
My betta had this spot before I moved him into the 20 gallon tank. Previously he was in a 10 gallon tank with 4 black skirt tetras. He has done perfectly fine with the black skirts for a year with no fin nipping or aggressiveness on either side. I started with him and 3 black skirts. He only flared at himself in a reflection when I first got him and put him in the tank (the 10 gallon tank) and once when I added the fourth he flared once at it as soon as I added it. After that there have never been any problems.
Always keep in mind that things change on the drop of a dime with bettas, one day they can stand their tank mates, the next their natural instinct to be alone kicks in and they go after anything that moves in the tank.

The dwarf gourami, white clouds, pristellas, ghost shrimp, and 2 black skirts are all new.
Bettas and gouramis should never be housed together.. they are both very territorial labyrinth fish that will both want to have the surface as their own. They may be doing okay together now, but that is most likely due to your betta not feeling a 100% and therefor will not make a move towards the gourami, and will run if the gourami makes a move towards him. Keep a close eye on them, because once they settle in more you will see the aggression come out more and more.

When I did the 20 gallon tank upgrade I cycled the tank for 24 hours with no fish in it. Then I added Microbe-lift special blend, which is an ecosystem bacteria treatment for both salt and fresh water aquariums to help cycle them and prepare them for fish.
It takes 4-6+ weeks to properly cycle a tank.. those chemicals don't work like a natural cycle does.

Then I added 4 of the new pristellas, 2 of the new black skirts, and the 2 new ghost shrimp. Then I waited 24 hours and added 2 more new pristellas, 1 more new blackskirt, a corey catfish (who didn't make it), and the dwarf gourami.
Every time you add in multiple fish at once you are causing ammonia spikes and the chemistry to become unbalanced and dangerous. Luckily most common tropical fish tend to be sturdier when it comes to it.. but it is dangerous.
Also, cories should be in groups of 4+..

Then I waited 2 more days before I transferred my betta and 3 black skirts he had been living with for a year over to the 20 gallon tank.

After treating the 10 gallon tank repeatedly and this spot on my betta not going away (although my tetras were fine after one treatment) and doing the water changes I was concerned that there may be something in the water itself that just wouldn't die off. So I decided rather than doing a 100% water change that I would upgrade to a larger tank and prep it for the move to alleviate stress on my betta and tetras and reduce chances of them getting sick or dying from the tank change.
I hope you followed the directions carefully, over doing medication can be deadly for fish and make them even more sick.

I have been testing all levels (PH, amonia, nitrites, nitrates, etc) in my tank since I first started cycling it. I tested the 10 gallon tank as well so I could compare the 2 tanks and waited until the PH levels were the same to transfer them. I have tested the new 20 gallon tank a total of 4 times in the last 11 days (which is how long I have had the 20 gallon setup) and all of my levels are good. My temperature also remains between 78 and 80.
Have you done a water change yet in the 20? When cycling a new tank, you should be testing daily. I am sure there have been spikes and such that you haven't noticed. Here is an easy guide to cycle the tank properly.. I know for a fact your tank is not cycled right now and is still deadly dangerous to the fish. Even if your testing is "good" it's not cycled. What type of tester are you using?

My betta actually became more active and seems happier since I put him in the 20 gallon tank. But even after treating the 20 gallon tank the spot still didn't go away, which is when and why I posted here asking for help.
I seriously hope you didn't put medication in the 20... ALWAYS remove the injured/ill fish first, find out what is wrong and see if it is contagious before you put your other fish through the harsh medicines. Never leave an injured/sick fish in the home tank with other fish... first step when any animal gets ill or injured, isolation, find out cause, treat appropriately. I suggest you placing him in a hospital tank at this time for treatment.

As you can see in the pictures I have plenty of hiding spots and room for them all to live together. I researched quite a bit and spoke to the aquarium store (I got my new fish at an aquarium store, not a chain pet store) before deciding to get the dwarf gourami.
Take anything you hear from a store employee with a grain of salt.. they are there to make a sale, not provide information that they have no training for. I did a simple google search "gourami and betta compatibility" just now and all you see is the answer "no". They simply are not good together and is highly recommended you replace the gourami.

I prefer not to go by the standard scientific view when it comes to mixing fish. I prefer to go with others' experience. We are dealing with living creatures after all and they each have their own personalities. Just like people, some bettas will have bad tempers and fight easily, others are more docile. I happen to have a more docile betta. I know his personality. I did not make my choice to buy the black skirts or the gourami on a whim, nor did I make it lightly. I discussed it with the stores before I purchased them and both stores gave me the option to return the fish if a problem arose with the betta. No problems ever arose. Now that's not to say that I would put angel fish or fancy guppies in because I have never seen mixed reviews on fish like that. There are mixed reviews on black skirts and dwarf gouramis, though.
Again, simple research online would of told you many experiences and facts of gouramis and bettas not compatible. You will soon learn that 95% of what you are told by pet shop employees is not accurate. I know you want the best for your fish, but you have made some simple errors of trust, and some common sense errors.
I'm not trying to sound rude or mean.. I may come off like it.. but I'm simply pointing out problems that need to be taken a look at to have healthy, happy fish.

I have read the mixed reviews about mixing dwarf gouramis with bettas. Some people mix up gouramis with dwarf gouramis. Dwarf gouramis are less aggressive than normal gouramis and tend to be more shy. They usually do well with other dwarf gouramis in their tank but can get territorial with other males dwarf gouramis if they don't have enough room or hiding spots.

There are mixed opinions and experiences with putting dwarf gouramis in with bettas. Some people have had problems and others have had no problems at all. I have had no problems with my gourami and betta at all. In fact, they like to hang out together sometimes. They will both chill with each other peacefully in the plants. Other times, they part ways and each has claimed a cave for himself. My betta uses the sphynx cave and my gourami uses the pyramid cave. I also have plenty of plants for both of them to utilize and they do. My betta never even flared at the gourami and the gourami has never gone after my betta. This is my personal experience and I see no reason to remove my betta or gourami if they are living in harmony together. If a problem does arise then I have another tank ready to house one of them.
As mentioned above, once your betta becomes stronger and healthier, and once your fish become more settled (which takes more then 11 days), you will start to see the fighting happening and aggression from both the gourami and betta. It's your choice to leave them in together, but since you have to try multiple times to convince us all is fine.. then you know that truly, you are being risky with them, at the risk of their health and life.

On another note, I'll add that every website I came across that listed companions for bettas I saw white clouds listed. Yet the girl at the store told me she wasn't supposed to sell them to me if I had a betta and insisted that bettas would kill them. But she did sell them to me because I frequent the store and she wanted feedback on how they did together. I've also found some sites say that gouramis will kill them. Well, my white clouds stay in the middle with the tetras or at the top of the aquarium level, school together, and I've had zero problems with them and my betta or my gourami.

I believe compatibility depends much more on the fish's individual personality, the tank size, and how the tank is set up with plants, decorations, etc. This is something I have read, was told by an aquarium expert, and have experienced myself personally so I'm sticking with it. If I run into a problem, I am prepared with a plan B to separate them.
I have to agree it does depend a lot on each fish, etc. But in my personal opinion and decades of experience.. why take the risks? Why chance killing some fish instead of finding appropriate tank mates?
Again, not trying to sound mean/rude.. I can just be blunt sometimes. I only mean to help.
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Old 08-09-2012, 06:26 PM   #13 
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A cycle cannot be completed in 24 hours. An aquarium cycle is the establishing of colonies of bacteria to deal with fish waste and takes 4-6 weeks to complete. Those supplements claim to instantly cycle a tank, but they just help speed it up by a few weeks. If you still have any filter media or the old filter from your 10 gal AND they have remained wet, they might still harbor some of the beneficial bacteria to help your cycle reestablish.

I agree with Myates. Eleven days isn't sufficient to say that those two fish get along especially when many reputable sources indicate otherwise. For example, Seriously Fish--a highly reputable website specializing in fish profiles--recommends against "the addition of other anabantoids (including Bettas) or gaudy species such as guppies" to small tanks with male gourami source. In an article giving an overview of anabantoids as a whole Pracical Fishkeeping (world-renowned fishkeeping magazine) recommends not keeping two male anabantids (gourami and betta) in the same tank due to the aggression issues source. Yes. There are people who have success keeping male gourami together, but this is in large tanks with sufficient swimming space and cover; this means lots of floating plants and heavily planted.

There are very few scientific views in this hobby. Most of it is experience from older aquarists. What little research that is done on aquaculture can hardly be applied to something like fish compatibility. Almost all stocking advice is the experience of those who have been doing this longer than some of us have been alive. I have seen mixed reviews about guppies. They are all over this forum, but I've never seen someone say that black skirt tetra can co-habitat with betta. Nor have I ever seen a mixed review about bettas and gourami. I am curious to know your sources.

Myates brought up another good point: you seem to trust the people who are trying to sell you things a little too much. It's like implicitly trusting a used car salesman. It's just not wise as they just care about money. Odd that she would sell you the black skirt tetra (which are known to be fin-nippers and not recommended with a variety of fish from angelfish to discus because of this) but not the white clouds which can make good betta companions. This piece of advice from the store would be enough for me not to trust them on betta compatibility.

You are right in that the setup of the aquarium often times will make a certain combination work or fail. But I can tell you that your tank is not not the right setup to combine black skirt tetras with other fish. When fish are in a sparsely planted, too small tank they get stressed. I urge you to read the article on stress I posted. If you don't believe it, read the sources and evaluate their validity for yourself.
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Old 08-09-2012, 10:02 PM   #14 
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I haven't had blackskirts for over 16 years, and what experience I have had of them I kept them with fish such as different barbs and sharks- basically not giving them the chance to mingle with fish that can easily be nipped, such as my loved angels. Blackskirts are friendly to a point, but they are tetras which are prone to nipping fins.

My concern is the thought process that lead to stocking this tank:
"My betta fish (who can snap at any time and hate every other fish) was pretty good with this certain species I had in this tank (only saw a little bit of aggression, but that was only when I was watching them.. not when I wasn't watching them which tends to be more when they will be aggressive (when they know they are being watched they tend to pay more attention to the observer)) so therefor because he was "ok" with this species, he should be just fine and happy with other species that are known to not get along with bettas"
It is your tank, and I wish you luck. But as a caretaker and enthusiast of the aquarium world, I have to at least say my peace to help save these fish.
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Old 08-09-2012, 10:33 PM   #15 
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I truly hope the OP reads and takes to heart what you guys are saying. I agree that the tank is not populated enough with good hiding spots/cover. It definitely needs more plants.

@OP: can you tell us what your readings are for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates? Just curious. I have read that a number of people have had success with "cycle accelerators" like Tetra Safestart and that these cycles would complete usually within 48hrs. This was the reason I bought a bottle, but after reading OFL's Nitrate Cycle thread, decided it wasnt needed for my purposes and my tank cycled on its own after a couple of weeks. The bottle is still sealed..

Regardless of your beliefs on whether or not all your fish get along, it would be best to go ahead and separate the betta in it's own QT tank. You may find that it was the stress of being with those other fish that kept him from getting better... Or you may not. QTing is still good so you dont subject the other healthy fish to any unneeded medication.
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Old 08-10-2012, 11:33 AM   #16 
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I don't remember my post asking anything about tankmates, tank compatibility, or tank setup.

I have read these boards on and off for about a year and everyone always seemed so friendly and helpful, which is why I decided to post asking for help....

But I asked if anyone knew what might be wrong with my betta-what the odd spot on him is. The tags on my post are fungal infection, scales, scales flayed out, sick betta. I did not ask what tankmates are appropriate for bettas or if I properly set up or cycled my tank. The tankmates and tank setup has absolutely nothing to do with his spot. They weren't even with him when he got it. There was no mention whatsoever in my original post or the tags of my post about tankmates and tank setup.

But instead of a thread filled with posts offering friendly help I got a tirade of posts lecturing me about my choice in fish, tankmates, tank setup, etc.

Everyone has their own opinion and experiences. And everyone should realize that just because someone is brand new to your community doesn't mean they were born yesterday and have absolutely no education, experience, or common sense, or that they just got their fish and tank the very day of their post.

My source for my aquarium help is the owner of a highly successful aquarium store in my town who has been an aquarium enthusiast and fish breeder for over 30 years. I'm not just trusting some dumb sales person. This man has never steered me wrong in the past and I have never had any of his advise go wrong before. Sorry if this bothers you so much that you find the need to make post after post after post with lengthy lectures. People here aren't the only experts or aquarium enthusiasts in the world.

and this:

"My betta fish (who can snap at any time and hate every other fish) was pretty good with this certain species I had in this tank (only saw a little bit of aggression, but that was only when I was watching them.. not when I wasn't watching them which tends to be more when they will be aggressive (when they know they are being watched they tend to pay more attention to the observer)) so therefor because he was "ok" with this species, he should be just fine and happy with other species that are known to not get along with bettas"

Was not my quote. I never said this. I don't even know why it is being used in reference to me in my thread.

I asked if anyone knew what the spot on my betta's body is
I gave his background and said he was showing no other symptoms, which is why I was concerned it may be a scar or skin/scale regrowth, or something else that wouldn't show other symptoms.

Thank you to the few people who actually read my post for what it was and were friendly and replied with suggestions concerning my actual question. My betta is receiving antibiotics and aquarium salt and is already showing improvement.

As for my experience here, I won't be coming back. I know no one cares, but it is sad that new members can't be welcomed into the community because some people feel the need to be incessantly right about everything and to pick apart someone else's love and hobby.

I love my fish. I love my aquarium hobby. My betta is safe and happy. I'm the one who sees him every day and night. Not anyone on these forums. If I thought for one second that he was in danger I would remove him immediately. I have had aquariums on and off for over 20 years. I asked if anyone knew what could be wrong with my fish. I did not ask to be railroaded about what types of fish I have. If I'm in the wrong, then I'm in the wrong. So be it. All I wanted was to see if anyone had ever seen a spot like my betta has and to suggest to me how to treat it, or if it needed any sort of treatment at all.

Now I'll relieve you of the stress of my tank setup, leave you to your exclusive community, and seek another one elsewhere.
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Old 08-10-2012, 11:37 AM   #17 
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It may be that the water chemistry is not conditioned for the betta, lets say he's getting stressed out.

Try doing water change and add small salt.

Maybe the gourami is stressing him.
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Old 08-10-2012, 11:38 AM   #18 
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Water flow seems too strong for the betta too.
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Old 08-10-2012, 12:03 PM   #19 
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I'm sorry it went that way... I went off of posts you had posted, and I apologize for people making correct recommendations on the subject of tank mates when it wasn't asked.

It is quite common and normal that fins grow back at a different color then what they were originally before they were damaged. Usually not too drastic of a change, but sometimes enough to be noticeable.
I am now wondering whether or not the scales are burns from the medication used to treat the fungus, or the fungus wasn't treated soon enough, or a simple case of really aggressive fungus that just left the scales damaged in the area it attacked.

I still suggest placing the betta in a hospital tank with a round of AQ salt to make sure the wound is clean, and then possibly keep him in the 10 gallon with a few platies, or something friendly such as that? That way you get to keep the cute gourami and the betta and they will be happy.
I'm sorry you had all that happen to your fish :(

Last edited by Myates; 08-10-2012 at 12:05 PM.
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Old 08-13-2012, 10:38 AM   #20 
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Just in case anyone else winds up with the same problem with their betta I'm posting to help them out...

I found out that this is hole in the head disease. It started off looking like fungus and stayed looking like a stubborn fungus. That is why I treated for fungus.

I treated for parasites recently because with the scales peeling away I thought it was velvet. But with that not working I noticed he started to form a small hole. Treatment with a 100% water change starts today.

And FYI, he has been in a hospital tank since I read the suggestion to put him in one and has been receiving salt treatments everyday.

I also decided to take my old 10 gallon tank, put a divider in it, and put this betta and another one in it if he recovers. I already got my new betta-a lavender half moon butterfly double tail.

So to anyone who notices what looks like a fungus to start out with, and turns into discoloration (especially blue from what I've been reading), and lifted/peeling scales, it is most likely hole in the head disease. Check my pictures for reference. This was a tough one for me to figure out since it mimics other diseases in early stages.
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fungal infection, scales, scales flayed out, sick betta

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