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Old 09-19-2010, 08:21 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Unhappy Loud, shocking vibration

What size is your tank? Typical size fish bowl
What temperature is your tank? Room temp
Does your tank have a filter? No
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? Does gravel on the bottom count?
Is your tank heated? No
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None, just a fake turtle

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Betta food
How often do you feed your betta fish? Every other day as we read to not over feed it.

How often do you perform a water change? 1x a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50-75%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Not sure, my husband does it, but I'm pretty sure he puts something in it because it's tap water.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? NO


Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? None
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Listless, not moving
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Today after terrible accident
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No, not sure what to do, if anything
Does your fish have any history of being ill? None
How old is your fish (approximately)? Had it about 5 mos, got from pet store, so unsure.

Our male betta sits in a typical fish bowl on our counter. We've had him about 5 months. He's always been very happy (he seems), he's always eaten good, very active, swims up to the glass when we are there...we talk to him, everything. Always good after water changes, nothing out of the ordinary.

Tonight at dinner, I was serving my son more dinner out of the pot, as I turned around to put it back on the counter behind me, I hit the fish bowl with the pot, I'd say pretty good. He swam around the bowl super fast like 7 times and then stopped and then sunk to the bottom. He sort of "floated" to the top now, listing to one side. We have not touched the bowl since then, I moved it more towards the center of the counter and I did that and his little gill fin (sorry, don't know the name) fluttered, but after that nothing, then about 20 mins ago it was fluttering on it's own. I am afraid that I harmed our little buddy so badly, so unintentionally. What have I done? Is there any hope? This happened about 3 hours ago.

The water temp is room temp, now I read he should probably be in a bigger bowl, but he's been totally fine until this happened.

Thanks for your help.

Last edited by tennisgirl858; 09-19-2010 at 08:24 PM.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:29 PM   #2 
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FIRST OF ALL- a 'typical sized fishbowl' varies so much its crazy. We need to know exactly. And what do you consider room temperature? Tell us the temperate your A.C is set at. Usually the tank if without heater will be 1-3 (farenheit i mean) degrees colder then what the air around it is set at. For example, my A.C is at 80 degrees and my tank stays at 78. Please say teh exact size bowl and temp.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:29 PM   #3 
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He may just be in shock. Give him some time to calm down.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:30 PM   #4 
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I'd say the best thing for him is silence and darkness. Maybe wrap a towel around his tank to keep the area less stressful for him. Things like this can't be fixed, only waited out. I'm sorry this happened, and hope everything turns out okay... And don't feel too guilty. It was an accident, something that happens to all of us.
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Old 09-19-2010, 08:39 PM   #5 
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Right now it is 75 in the house. No windows are open and the kitchen is dark and quiet. I really couldn't tell you the size of the bowl. It's not tiny like you see them at the mall in those tiny bowls, but it's not a tank or overly huge, probably in between the size of a volleyball and basketball.
To find out the temp of the house, I went down and checked him w/out turning on the light and he was swimming around a bit. When I came near he swam up to me. I would take a picture now, but I don't want to disturb him any more.
I appreciate the kind words, it really was an accident, I'll go check on him in a little bit and keep you updated.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:36 PM   #6 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Northern Virginia
You should really take the time to measure the volume of the container at some point, since how often you should change the water depends on it. 16 cups = 1 gallon, so you could use a simple measuring cup to find this out. Please keep in mind that a one gallon container should have a 100% change every other day, and a 2 gallon container should have a 100% change every 3 days.

Fish excrete ammonia through their gills constantly, it's kind of like their form of urine. Ammonia is highly toxic, to the point that the only safe level ammonia is 0 ppm, which is very, very little. The only way to sustain this undetectable level of ammonia is through frequent 100% changes, since, if you think about it, if you do a 50% change one day, and a 50% change the next, technically it adds up to 100%, but you haven't changed 100% of the water. Inevitably, there's some of the old water left plus whatever the fish has contributed to the water between changes. So over time partial chances become less and less effective at controlling the ammonia level.

I hope you measure the volume of the tank and consider changing your routine if necessary. An adjustable heater would also improve his life immensely. Bettas really need consistently warm temperatures. It may not seem like a big difference to big warm blooded mammals like us, but to a 2" cold blooded tropical fish, a few degrees means better circulation, more regular digestion, and a healthier immune system. I use and recommend this heater: if you choose to heat his tank, try to find one that has an adjustable thermostat.

What the others have said about silence and darkness is definitely valuable advice. It's important for him to have rest and solitude while he recovers from this stressful experience. You should also consider a 100% water change in the near future. You should definitely make sure he adds a dechlorinating product with each water change.

Once you get your heater it would be a good idea to feed him every day. Most keepers give their betta two pellets twice a day, or three pellets per day if you can only feed him once. It's a good idea to use multiple brands and supplement his diet with frozen foods, like frozen brine shrimp and blood worms since no single pellet can provide your fish with complete nutrition.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:32 PM   #7 
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What they said. Darkness and quiet really helps a fish to overcome stress. I also found that my betta, who used to be terrified whenever I walked up to feed him, really bloomed and relaxed once I put him in a five gallon tank. I guess he never really got used to being in a 3gal and felt a bit squished up in there.

I'm glad your fish is feeling better. You sound like you really care for him and are attached to him, that's great. :)
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