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Old 01-27-2013, 12:16 AM   #1 
Xaltd1
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QT’d Bettas: What should I do next?

Many of you have heard most of my story. It’s a long one, and not for the faint of heart. I know what mistakes I made; I just need to know what to do next.
I love female bettas, so I decided to create a 29-gallon sorority tank. My first 2 Petco females began to nip each other in their 5 gallon Hex. I hastened to cycle the 29g on Dec. 20 so I could separate the fish. I used plants and decor from the 5 gallon and my 2.5 g “betta bow” that houses Butch, my gorgeous purple male EE PK. I moved the aggressive girl to the 29 gallon as soon as it was possible (she is Angel, a lovely Cambodian CT) b/c I noticed a white patch on Gilly’s head (she was the picked on girl). I decided the patch was a nip, and I treated Gilly in her 5 gal with API’s “Bettafix” plus Tetra’s “Lifeguard”. After 5 days, her patch was nearly 100% healed (her activity level never changed; a frisky little girl.)
I planted the 29g, and ordered more females. 1 adoption red CT; 3 cellophane girls (1 EE pale blue PK, 2 cellophane pastel pink CTs, 1 deep blue EE HM, 1 marble HM, 1 denim blue HM, 1 fancy marbled CT, and a green-blue CT, a mustard-gas HM, and a lovely pineapple-yellow HM. 4 fish were from a US Aquabid seller, 6 were from a Thai Aquabid seller. I adopted 1 from this site, plus I had 2 Petco girls: 13 ladies total.
By the end of December, I had my 29 gallon testing perfectly with Angel the CT, 6 cory cats, 1 mystery snail plus a few Ramshorns & pond snails (betta fish food, basically, as they disappeared quickly). I recieved all my mail-order fish on Jan. 9. I was advised to create a hospital tank, but my eagerness to get going caused me to add 12 new fish all at once (Gilly plus the new purchases). I figured I could spot a problem right away & pull affected fish as they displayed problems. What happened was that all the Corys died within a 2-day period! They were stressed by all the newcomers and started acting erratically right away. Then, the Green lady started on a bully streak; she earned a “time out” tank for a week. She is by far the biggest fish. My “female” bright blue EE got a bit aggressive, too; some posters here thinks “she’s” a male; maybe my green fish is, too.
Then I began to lose the bettas. My marbled CT sunk to the bottom of the tank; within 2 days she was dead. Then, the prized mustard gas went, too. I ran out and bought a 10 gallon and cycled it for a week with BB from my EE PK’s tank, using his plants and gravel. It tested (Master test kit) perfectly, so I hastily transferred all remaining girls. I started treating it with Mardel Maracyn-Oxy each day, sometimes 2x since I was doing 25% water changes every day. Within a day, the denim blue girl plus the yellow girl sank. Within a day the denim blue was dead (Jan 12 approx.). As I speak, my yellow girl STILL languishes at the bottom of the tank, occasionally resting in the floating plants; my bright blue EE has also started to be sluggish. The rest are acting like healthy fish- begging for food, “playing” (chasing, posturing). Everyone is eating normally, except the blue and yellow; they allow the others to crowd around the top, while they take their time eating. Also, the small mystery snail that I moved with them died very quickly; his body slipped out of it’s shell the same day denim girl died. I removed the Ramshorn snails (originally 13; now 5) to a little unheated tank.
I completely demolished the 29-gal. I pumped all the water out, threw away all the sand and aquatic soil. I put all the real plants in a bucket of plain water. Any fake decor went into a bucket w/ a capful of bleach to the 5-gal bucket. I wiped every drop of water/debris out of the tank w/clean paper towels. Here it sits today. I did this b/c I had to eliminate the possiblility of something toxic in the tank. The plants are still sitting in the bucket. To toss or not?
I’d like to start the 29-gal over. What do I do now???? I have an empty 29 gal, empty 5-gal Hex, one empyt2.5 betta bow. Another 2.5 betta bow is occupied by Butch and his 2 Ramshorn snails; they are perfect. My 10-gal is now occupied with the fish listed above. I have 2 fish in that tank that are not frisky, but have been alive longer than the other sick fish. Also, the blue EE and Miss aggressive green show signs of damaged fins- I haven’t noticed nipping, but the healthy, frisky girls could’ve ganged up on them when my back was turned...all/any suggestions are more than welcome at this point!!!.
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Old 01-27-2013, 12:58 AM   #2 
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Sorry for all the problems you're having. Seems like maybe the girls had a major fight fest, including what could've been a male in your group. Would like the hear what the seasoned betta owners have to say as i am still fairly new to keeping bettas.
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:09 AM   #3 
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Everyone is on her best behavior when Mom is around, so maybe the aggression isn't evident to me. I pride myself on giving a well-rounded diet- frozen & dried treats aplenty. They pay attention to my every move when I'm near them. It's hard to know what goes on when I'm not there. I only work 2 days per week- that's enough to cause trouble, I suppose. I thought that being at home so much, I could better take care of my bettas.
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:24 AM   #4 
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At night, i will check on the tank and female VT Francine is chasing one of the mollies around. I usually put her in a timeout and put one of my males in, they seem more chill than the females for some reason. So all the action could be happening while you're sleepin!
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:29 AM   #5 
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True! The dawn breaks light into the tanks before I am up 5 days out of the week. On the 2 days I work, I'm up @ 5 (still pitch black) and catch them all sleeping in the floating plants... who knows what shenanigans ensue after that?
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Old 01-27-2013, 01:38 AM   #6 
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Well, i can tell you my mollies poop a lot! Maybe it's from all the exercise they get from being chased that they crap themselves silly! Lol! Anyhow, i think you should restart your 29G.
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Old 01-27-2013, 02:02 AM   #7 
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I ordered new plants on line (aquatic plants.com I think) and plan on starting the 29 gal from scratch. Do I add my healthy bettas?? Or do I leave the bettas in the 10 gal and use the 29 gal for guppies, mollies, other easy-care fish?
I was really hoping to have ONE 29 gal and ONE tank for my male betta- not 5 tanks going at once!
I hoped to mate my purple ee plakat to the ee female pastel blue- what spectacular offspring! Because of the apparent illness, I've given up on this idea. I want Butch to live!
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Old 01-27-2013, 10:52 PM   #8 
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Just keep the survivors separated in a small container floating inside a HEATED tank.

Allow them to rest & recuperate for a a few days or a week if you can. Offer them food because that always seems to make them "perk up with excitement"

Clean their BARE containers out frequently so they don't have any excess ammonia buildup creating additional stress.

Make sure to keep them separated from one another in case you missed it the first time.
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Old 01-27-2013, 10:56 PM   #9 
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I'm doing that right away!
Does adding peaceful fish (guppies, platties) reduce overall aggression?
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:14 AM   #10 
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think you jus gotta watch out for the fin nippers. One of my mollies is trying to give my VT a haircut every time he turns his back. I let Francine (overly aggressive female) out to keep everyone in line!
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