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Old 02-07-2013, 01:09 PM   #1 
vaftner
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Rapid Loss of Color (48h max)

Hey everyone. I just wanted to know what could cause such a rapid loss of color in my betta. The odd thing is he's actually more active since the loss of color, and his eating habits haven't changed. I've had this guy for about a year now, without any problems until last week. I'm currently treating him with Melafix (day 6 out of 7 day minimum treatment), and there doesn't seem to be any improvement. Any suggestions?
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:12 PM   #2 
Demysta
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Hi there! First off, you should NOT be using the Melafix or anything with -fix at the end of it! These medications are not good for betta fish, and if I'm not mistaken Melafix contains tea tree oil just like Bettafix, and this oil can actually coat through labyrinth organ and impede their breathing and even suffocate them with extended use. Give him a 100% water change ASAP. And please fill this out:

Housing
What size is your tank?
What temperature is your tank?
Does your tank have a filter?
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Is your tank heated?
What tank mates does your betta fish live with?

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish?
How often do you feed your betta fish?

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change?
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change?
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia:
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
When did you start noticing the symptoms?
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
Does your fish have any history of being ill?
How old is your fish (approximately)?
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:25 PM   #3 
vaftner
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Housing
What size is your tank? 2.5 Gal
What temperature is your tank? 77
Does your tank have a filter? no
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? none

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? BettaMin Tropical Medley flakes (2x/day) and Tetra Freeze dried bloodworms (1x/week)
How often do you feed your betta fish? Twice a day

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Once a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 99.5%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? AquaSafe dechlorinator and conditioner

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? Not applicable (n.a.)

Ammonia:n.a.
Nitrite:n.a.
Nitrate: n.a.
pH: n.a.
Hardness: n.a.
Alkalinity: n.a.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? 85% loss of color (opalescent black to greyish-white)
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? increased activity, no change in eating habits.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Approx. 1 week ago. Occurred in less than 48h.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? yes, Melafix.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Approx. 1-1.5 years old.

Last edited by vaftner; 02-07-2013 at 01:27 PM.
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:28 PM   #4 
Krys
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Do you notice any white or greyish spots on him that could indicate ick? Or does the increased activity seem to associated with rubbing against decor as if trying to scratch an itch?
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:32 PM   #5 
vaftner
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No presence of ich. He just seems more "excitable" when he sees someone, or it's feeding time. Where else, he's just resting (which he did before he got sick). He's not trying to rub himself against the tank, plants or stones...
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:34 PM   #6 
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Any sort of swimming or balance problems?
Are you sure the water is 77*?
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:36 PM   #7 
Demysta
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Things that could help him right now are a 100% water change and a better diet. The flakes you're feeding him are not really good quality, and a lack of proper nutrition could have compromised his immune system. You could try going for Omega One Betta Bites or try some frozen foods such as brine shrimp or bloodworms. Even better if the frozen food had a mixture of things in it that they normally eat (bloodworms, daphnia, brine shrimp). I give my adult bettas the frozen foods and they love it and look very healthy and happy! Helped my newest female perk up and get her energy and colour back.
Also, those water changes are not enough. For a tank that size you want to do 1 50% and 1 100% a week. For now, give him the 100% water change immediately and acclimate him to the new tank water. Try to get as little of the old tank water in the new tank so the melafix is completely gone. I would follow up with 50% water changes daily for the next few days. See if that changes anything.
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:40 PM   #8 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Demysta View Post
Things that could help him right now are a 100% water change and a better diet. The flakes you're feeding him are not really good quality, and a lack of proper nutrition could have compromised his immune system. You could try going for Omega One Betta Bites or try some frozen foods such as brine shrimp or bloodworms. Even better if the frozen food had a mixture of things in it that they normally eat (bloodworms, daphnia, brine shrimp). I give my adult bettas the frozen foods and they love it and look very healthy and happy! Helped my newest female perk up and get her energy and colour back.
Also, those water changes are not enough. For a tank that size you want to do 1 50% and 1 100% a week. For now, give him the 100% water change immediately and acclimate him to the new tank water. Try to get as little of the old tank water in the new tank so the melafix is completely gone. I would follow up with 50% water changes daily for the next few days. See if that changes anything.
I don't entirely agree that the flakes are anything less. I've always had them for my bettas (one of my bettas will only eat the flakes). And I've never had a problem with them. And I have the same flakes she has.

but if this is a nutrition problem, then just simply upping the protien in the diet will give him back his color. But loss of color that quickly would not indicate a bad diet if she's been feeding him those flakes for the past year. the color would have gradually faded.
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:42 PM   #9 
vaftner
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To Krys: no swimming or balance issues, and yes, I'm sure.

To Demysta: I have some freeze-dried brine shrimp on hand. I'm just concerned about constipation issues. I have 27 other betta (not including my sick little guy) and they're all on the same diet he's on (the flakes twice a day and freeze-dried bloodworms once a week), and they're all fine (youngest is about 7 months, oldest is about 3 years old). I indicated a 99.5% water chage as a little bit of "dirty" water always gets into the newly washed and preped tanks when placing the fish back in. In essence, the water change is 100%.
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Old 02-07-2013, 01:46 PM   #10 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krys View Post
I don't entirely agree that the flakes are anything less. I've always had them for my bettas (one of my bettas will only eat the flakes). And I've never had a problem with them. And I have the same flakes she has.

but if this is a nutrition problem, then just simply upping the protien in the diet will give him back his color. But loss of color that quickly would not indicate a bad diet if she's been feeding him those flakes for the past year. the color would have gradually faded.
Pellets and frozen foods are actually the best when it comes to nutritional value. Frozen foods can give the fish a nice protein boost and good quality pellets can provide the other necessary nutrients. I've had one betta fish who would only eat flakes and I noticed a lot of the times he had constipation problems and didn't have the same healthy body weight as my other bettas fed on frozen foods. Its just something I've noticed. Didn't mean to offend you.

EDIT: vaftner, when was the last time you noticed him pooping? Was it any different colour the last time you saw it?

Last edited by Demysta; 02-07-2013 at 01:48 PM.
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