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Old 09-10-2012, 03:28 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Tank Setup Help for Sick Betta

I've kept bettas in the past and have never had trouble caring for one until now. I'm trying to set up a new tank for him, but have several concerns before I go ahead. Now, this is all going to sound a bit strange, so just hang with me a moment.

I bought a chocolatey brown colored betta a while back that has had swim bladder disease since day 1. Nothing I did helped...and I was too afraid to move him into a big tank since he was having so much trouble swimming. One day, I put in some of my floating pond plants in hopes that it would help clean the water a bit...and that didn't make a difference either. The plants eventually died due to a lack of light and I didn't remove them right away, but that's when there was a change...the betta stopped floating and hasn't had a problem since. I've even been too afraid to clean out his tank because I'm afraid he will go back to floating.

However, now that he seems healthy, I would like to set up his big tank for him, but I am unsure as I do not want him to go back to floating again. I am thinking that maybe I should try something similar to my pond set up in hopes that it'd keep him, soil under gravel with some planted and floater plants. However, since I feel I've been in an unfamiliar situation with this fish, I wanted to ask for some opinions and suggestions on setting up the tank.
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Old 09-10-2012, 04:23 PM   #2 
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Well first of all, regardless of whether the dead plants caused the change you do need to clean the water! He can die from ammonia poisoning otherwise. I would say put him in the new tank, and lower the water for a bit if he's having issues. There is some helpful advice for treating swim bladder problems in the stickied "betta fish diseases and treatment" thread on this section! Good luck!
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Old 09-10-2012, 05:17 PM   #3 
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I agree, keep the water level low for him in the new tank until you're sure he's having no trouble reaching the surface. Move him right away or change the water in his old tank, if he floats again it won't be because of clean water.

What kind of floating plants do you have? Plants like hornwort are great because the fish can rest on them close to the surface so they have a much smaller distance to go to get air.

Hiding spots are essential. I don't know how big your new tank is, but at least 2 cavelike areas to hide in would be good. Some driftwood with holes drilled out and moss tied to the top is what I'm using for my new planted tank. Along with the plants, that will make your guy feel nice and safe. Bettas aren't huge fans of large bare spots with wide open spaces.
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