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Old 09-17-2013, 03:32 PM   #1 
smurphy90
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Exclamation Please Help: I don't know what's wrong.

Housing
What size is your tank?
10 gallons

What temperature is your tank?
79 degrees (F), adjustable heater with separate thermometer to check for accuracy.

Does your tank have a filter?
Yes. (Aqua-Tech, 5-15)

Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Yes, but the airstone has been shut off for the last 5 days due to the betta's weakened state.

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?
New Life Spectrum Betta Pellets

How often do you feed your betta fish?
Once/day 3-6 pellets

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change?
Weekly.

What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change?
30-50% The last one done (9/15/13) was a 60% change.

What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?
Tetra AquaSafe Plus

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

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 5ppm
pH: 7.6
Hardness: n/a
Alkalinity: n/a

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
He has VERITCLE stripes on his body.
He has always had a slight spinal deformity, that seems as though it MIGHT be more pronounced than usual.

How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
He is laying on his side 99% of the time. He rarely will surface for food, though when I try to feed him, his wiggles around as though he's trying to swim but can't.
He is able to swim if he darts very quickly, but once he goes to one place, he remains there for hours, laying on his side or leaning against plant bases or rocks.

When did you start noticing the symptoms?
About one week ago.

Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
I have fasted him for 3 days and then attempted to feed him bites of thawed, frozen pea, but it was unclear as to whether or not he ate them (he wouldn't surface so I set the bite of pea in his terracotta pot, which he had been sleeping in most of the time.)

Does your fish have any history of being ill?
He has had fin rot twice and a mild case of swim bladder when I purchased him, which was easily cured with one "pea" treatment.

How old is your fish (approximately)?
Slightly over a year, I would guess. I got him one year ago August.



I have also tested our tap water parameters and they are perfect (no ammonia, same pH, and I always use AquaSafe with water changes.)

His decor is the same as it always had been, however about 3 weeks ago we added a Marimo moss ball from PetSmart. I didn't do anything in particular to prep the ball, except rinse it off under tap water, squeeze the excess water out and put it in the tank. I took it out on Thursday night, for fear something about it was wrong. I did not use any dechlorinator when adding the moss ball, could this have caused anything?

If anyone has ANY ideas, please let me know. I've asked twice on another forum and have gotten no responses, other than follow-up questions.
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Old 09-17-2013, 10:00 PM   #2 
veggiegirl
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Hey there, there is a chance that the marimo moss ball transported some disease to your boy especially if it was kept in with fish in the shop. Otherwise sometimes bettas just get stressed without us knowing why and this can cause them to come out with disease.

If you can please post a photo of your betta, it is always difficult to diagnose from afar but near impossible with no picture for reference. I'll do my best to help.
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Old 09-18-2013, 04:37 PM   #3 
Soph7244
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Veggiegirl is right. you should try and do a 85% water change and see how he is feeling. and post some picture too. it would really help to see if there was anything wrong on the outside. I hope he feels better soon!
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Old 09-19-2013, 06:16 PM   #4 
smurphy90
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Other than some stripes on his body, nothing is out of the ordinary on the outside.

Here is a photo, please keep in mind his body is not as light as it looks in the photo. His body is the same color as his tail, the lighting just made it look weird.

That's basically how he's been for the last week or so: Constantly leaning against something. Right before I took this photo, he wiggled around as though he were trying to swim to the top but just gave up and laid there.
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:33 PM   #5 
LittleBlueFishlets
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I would do a 50% water change.

Then, put some tank water into a cup. Stir in 2.5 teaspoons Epsom salt*. Make sure the salt is completely dissolved. Over the course of about 15 minutes, slowly pour the solution into the tank.....

Wait 30 minutes. Then repeat this process using another 2.5 teaspoons Epsom salt.

This will provide a total dosage of 0.5 teaspoons Epsom salt per gallon.

I would not feed him a pea right now. Peas are high in fiber, but don't contain nutrients that they need.....

It would be better to offer him a NLS pellet. If he doesn't eat it, just remove it from tank and try again later.

*If you don't have Epsom salt, you can get it at most supermarkets and pharmacies. Look for 100% magnesium sulfate. (No dyes, perfumes or additives). It's available at Walmart, CVS, Walgreens, Publix, etc.
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:50 PM   #6 
veggiegirl
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Hey there,

It's great that you were able to get a photo. Looking at him two possible things come to mind either internal bacterial infection or parasites though admitedly there could be many other causes.

I see that his tail looks a bit tatty, try shining a bright light like a torch on him especially at night and look very very closely for tiny either gold, white or brown dusting like very fine powder scattered all over him. Gold is the most common colour, it would be all over his body fins and maybe even on his eyes. If you can see this then you boy has velvet. This could easily be introduced to your tank by the plants.

Bacterial diseases on the other hand are more likely to have other causes but we will come to that when we get there just check for the velvet first.
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Old 09-19-2013, 11:48 PM   #7 
smurphy90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by veggiegirl View Post
Hey there,

It's great that you were able to get a photo. Looking at him two possible things come to mind either internal bacterial infection or parasites though admitedly there could be many other causes.

I see that his tail looks a bit tatty, try shining a bright light like a torch on him especially at night and look very very closely for tiny either gold, white or brown dusting like very fine powder scattered all over him. Gold is the most common colour, it would be all over his body fins and maybe even on his eyes. If you can see this then you boy has velvet. This could easily be introduced to your tank by the plants.

Bacterial diseases on the other hand are more likely to have other causes but we will come to that when we get there just check for the velvet first.
I've triple checked for Velvet and I haven't seen any signs. Anytime he gets ill that's one of the first things I check for so I've been double checking every few days and there are still no signs of it (and I am checking with a bright flashlight at night.)

His tail is pretty normal. He had fin rot twice (once when I bought him and a second time about 2 months ago) and his fins just don't seem to grow back very fast.

I have Maracyn 1 and 2, if I need them.
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Old 09-20-2013, 01:22 AM   #8 
smurphy90
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I just did a (almost) 100% water change. I had intended to do a 50% change but when I started vacuuming the gravel, I saw several tiny white worms around the water. I only saw three or four, but I decided to do a massive water change and rinse the gravel off.

Assuming these were planaria, I also only put 1/2 of my gravel back in the tank, to help keep organic matter from building up in the deeper layers.

I rearranged his ornaments a bit to see if he perks up at all to explore. I had a chance to examine him even closer during this process and I still can't find anything external out of the norm (again, except for the faint stripes on his body.)

I rinsed his filter in the old tank water, rinsed the gravel and ornaments in tap water, assembled his tank, conditioned, and then added him back in. He hasn't yet laid on his side. He is still sticking to the bottom, but he always does that after commotion.

Anyways... if anyone has any suggestions about the worms (which hopefully aren't in the tank at all anymore) let me know.


Just to note: I know planaria are harmless but I wanted to do a complete water change anyways because if they were there in the first place, that meant there was too much organic matter in there.

Last edited by smurphy90; 09-20-2013 at 01:29 AM.
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