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Old 03-01-2011, 02:05 PM   #91 
Here Fishy Fishy Fishy
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LisaLB24,

I'd put the 5 healthy ones into the cycled tank. Treat the ill bettas. When they are both healthy, plan their introduction into the sorority.

*Acclimatize the newcomers to tank water before they go in - by adding tank water to their cups. Feed the new fishes a snack just before they transfer.

*I would do it at a major water change/vaccumming/cleaning and re-arranging.
That way the established sorority is 'thrown off' by major enviromental change.

*Take the sorority out of the main tank into a bucket of tank water. Reverse pecking order, so that the Alpha female goes in the bucket last. Feed the sorority a snack, while they are in the bucket. (All the girls should have eaten before they meet, so that the competition for food is not an immediate issue)

*Slip the two new bettas into the main tank while the sorority. Give them about 20 minutes to orient themselves before the sorority comes in.

*Add the sorority back, again in reverse order, so that the Alpha betta goes in last.

*Watch for any overly aggressive behavior. Any problem should make themselves known pretty quickly (I had one little girl betta that aggressively went after another older betta twice her size... as soon as they both hit the water!).

*Isolate any aggressive fish... float her in a clear container or net cage for a few days. If she doesn't mellow out at the next introduction attempt, she may need to be rehomed.

Good luck healing the girls and with your sorority!
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Old 03-01-2011, 03:18 PM   #92 
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For myself, I keep a one gallon container separate that I use as a quarantine so I can medicate individually and keep the water very clean.

I also have a 10 gallon for my bigger fish, which is a bit harder to manage, but you're not putting clown loaches or a sick angel fish in a 1 gallon.

I would separate them, treat as needed - keep the water nice and clean and heated - and put your five healthy girls in the 10 gallon and monitor them closely for signs of illness.
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:48 PM   #93 
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Ok, so the healthy girls are in. And I have a bully. How much fighting is too much? She is a reddish fan tail and she is chasing everyone around. Everyone else runs but there is another red betta that is almost as stubborn as her. I netted one and the other was pecking at her through the net! now I've got a towel over the tank for everyone to calm down. I peeked a minute ago and everyone is chill. I want them to establish a heirarchy but when should I interfere?
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Old 03-02-2011, 08:59 PM   #94 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LisaLB24 View Post
Ok, so the healthy girls are in. And I have a bully. How much fighting is too much? She is a reddish fan tail and she is chasing everyone around. Everyone else runs but there is another red betta that is almost as stubborn as her. I netted one and the other was pecking at her through the net! now I've got a towel over the tank for everyone to calm down. I peeked a minute ago and everyone is chill. I want them to establish a heirarchy but when should I interfere?
Immediately, you're the biggest fish and their Alpha

You never really have an Alpha female, just the Beta Betta.

Love on them all more till you have their attention.
(love, not food, wiggle fingers, spread, teach names, etc... I get most my girls to understand glass petting of their reflection)
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:30 AM   #95 
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I put the problem child in a breeder and she is sulking and making mean faces at everyone who passes. There is still a little bit of chasing. But they seemed to have calmes down a lot. She's going to stay in the breeder while I'm at work and I'll try to add her back when I'm home tonight and can watch her.
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Old 03-03-2011, 09:06 AM   #96 
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Thunderloon,

You're right, bettas respond to us in a way other fish (like tetras, for example) do not. They do seem to crave our attention. We are the most major distraction they can experiance (short of the tank bursting). :)
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:36 PM   #97 
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Hmmm, not going so well. :(
They are still chasing and pecking at each other pretty much constantly.
How long will this go on? If this isn't going to work I'd rather pull the plug BEFORE there are any major injuries. Should I give it another day or two? No wrestling matches that I've seen today and no more damaged fins since I removed the most aggresive girl.
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Old 03-03-2011, 02:46 PM   #98 
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Tank pics



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Old 03-03-2011, 05:40 PM   #99 
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Tank looks perfect for betta. I will tell you this from my experience;

The first day or so was nasty - they were fighting each other left and right. This was in a 10 gallon with 3 females and a male. Eventually it settled - but the male would chase the most beta of the bettas (#3 in the heirarchy) while there was no fighting, I pulled the male. Added two more females, and they fought again for the first day, after that just some minor chasing.

Got a 29 gallon, put the male back in, and slowly added more females - almost 0 aggression. Of the 4 females I added, 1 - a baby at that, once it got used to the tank (probably 1-2 days later) started chasing a few of the others around, climbing the hierarchy so to speak. That settled within a few days. Added male back in day 2 of 29 gallon - and never any issues with him either.

75 gallon, 10+ bettas, same male that's been in since day 1 - angel fish, clown loaches, zebra danios - 0 aggression.

My conclusion? Size matters for aggression, and some chasing and even nipping is normal, especially in beginning. When my females were shy, or being picked on - they hid. I have hysterical pictures of my fish pressed against tank and plants, hiding behind thermometer, curled in balls in little alcoves in decorations and driftwood, hiding tangled in my java moss, and my male who loves to make my little house decoration I have his own cave. He always chills in there until I come around.

As they all got more comfortable with the tank and each other, they pretty much started schooling together - until bed time when they all kind of go there own way and hide.
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Old 03-03-2011, 06:21 PM   #100 
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LisaLB24,

Nipping and minor fighting will happen in a sorority; there will be major skirmishs too and power struggles. Unfortunately, these girls are like little wet pitbulls. I have a female betta who cannot have another creature in her tank (I learned the hard way). She's alone (and happy) in her 5 gallon.

If you have a fish that is over-the-top-aggressive and refuses to play well with others, it could end badly. Even if you remove her, though, one of the other girls may eventually 'snap' someday - that's the risk you run, keeping a sorority.

Betta girls are beautiful and dangerous... like the female spies in a James Bond movie. When everybody's happy, there's nothing "betta" (ha ha). But when things go wrong, they can go terribly wrong.

What is the best solution for the situation your bettas are currently in? What do you want to do?
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