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Old 09-17-2012, 05:52 AM   #1 
Ezzie
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Question Just want to do the right thing.

Hi fourm, Another newbie here and one who is trying to do the right thing by her little fighting fish Arthur, though right now his behaviour is concerning me...

I am not entirely new to fighting fish and have kept some before, however looking back i really could have given those other fighters a better quality of life. Right now however, i only have one male betta fish called Arthur and im looking for some guidance on how to improve his quality of life and have a healthy betta!

I chose Arthur out of 20 other grown male bettas because he was so active, flaring at the male in the other tank and had a good bubble nest going on, He was really full of life!

Before i bought Arthur home i fully set up his tank and let it filter and cycle for 2 days and heated it for the whole day before bringing him home. When he was home, i let his bag float for 20 minutes to the same temperature and added a little water of the tank at a time before releasing him (with his snail friend Shelly) into his new home and WOW he was full of life! Totally exploring his home and even built a little bubble nest.

Arthur's tank is a 9 Liter planted (live plants) (i think thats a 2 gallon tank?) heated tank with a filtration system. The filter however i had to modify a little as the current was way too strong (even on the lowest setting) I simply put some filter wool in the main pipe of the filter that sucks up the water and it really reduced the flow to something much nicer to a fighting fish

I am a little concerned however if this will affect the way the water is filtered, do you think it will affect the way the tank is kept clean ?

The heater WAS sitting at 20 degrees celcius (68 degrees farenheit) but after researching i realised that it was far too low and Since earlier today it has been put at 26 degrees (78 farenheit) which has been pretty stable since heating to the correct temperature.

He is fed 4 balls of betta food (brand Aquarian) and i will soon be getting him some little blood worms or something else to spruce up his diet.

All this is wonderful and from my eyes it seems i have done everything i knew how to do to make a betta fish happy, however Arthur doesnt look very happy to me now...

Since yesterday he has been really lacking in energy, and continues to stay at the bottom of the tank looking very depressed.
I did a water test for the pH and the ammonia and both came back in a normal/ good range (pH was 7.0 and ammonia was on the low end of the scale) The water was treated while cycling and new water i had added was warm and treated as well earlier this morning.
He eats his food with enthusiasm so that is at least a good sign.
He doesnt have any noticable damage to his fins (i dont notice any fin rot or anything) and he has no external fungus/ paracites so why is he suddenly feeling so down??

Could he be stressed due to the cold temperature (his tank at the shop wasnt heated at all) or could he be bored? I plan on buying another plant and one of those little pot looking ornaments to give him somewere to explore...

Has anyone experienced anything like this if all seems to be normal to begin with?
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:14 AM   #2 
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How long has he been in his tank? It could just be stress. Also, do you know about the ammonia and nitrates and nitrite levels in the tank?
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:34 AM   #3 
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He has been in there almost 5 days now.

I did tests before, pH was normal(7.0) and nitrates test was between 0-5.0 judging from the tests i just did, its in the low range.
I will be picking up an ammonia test tomorrow to check, i cant find my little kit for it
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Old 09-17-2012, 06:57 AM   #4 
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Congrats, it seems you're really trying to do your research and treat your fish as best as possible! Right now, I think you've been misinformed about cycling a tank- unfortunately most of the "cycling" products don't work (and none will work without an ammonia source), and letting a tank sit for a few days actually does nothing other than heat the tank to the desired temp. I would suggest reading this great thread on cycling:

http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/f...m-cycle-38617/

A 2 gallon is too small to really hold a cycle though, so you'll either want to just do two 100% water changes on it weekly or get a larger tank to cycle. Either way I'd still strongly recommend reading the above article because understanding the aquarium cycle is the most important fact about fishkeeping regardless of whether you choose to cycle or not. The key to happy fish is clean water! Hope this helps!
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:05 AM   #5 
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Thanks for the speedy replies!

Do you think that he could live a happy life if I do regular water changes a week? That's what I previously did with my old betas and they lived to be over two years old!

Do you think he's just gone into a sudden state of shock and that's why he's more lethargic then before? Should I hold off on the water change until another week to let him settle, considering right now the nitrate levels are low..?

Would adding another plant help the cycle at all or would this just make it more toxic? Not to menction harder to clean...
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:08 AM   #6 
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It's also a little ironic that with my old betas they were in a non heated/ filtered bowl without anything treated and yet they thrived, however when I try hard to giving my new Betta a decent life with all the (somewhat) correct ways to keep fish he may possibly be sick...
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Old 09-17-2012, 08:39 AM   #7 
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I would say it is the stress of the move. Some fish handle it well, some don't. I bought two on the same day. One fish swims around, the other sat on the bottom for three days before deciding to perk up. Now they both swim and are incredibly active. They flare and dance for food whenever they see me. It sounds like you are doing everything right. If you are really worried he might be sick, you could add a little bit of aquarium salt (1/2 teaspoon/gallon). Just dissolve it in a little of his water (I like to use the cups the fish come in for this) and pour it back in.

Best of luck with your new fish! I hope to see pictures of the little guy soon.
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