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Old 03-13-2011, 06:28 PM   #1 
Alexandrite
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Fungus... I just don't understand.

Okay. I've been taking care of these two fish that my friend who moved overseas gave me. They used to live in small bowls not even a gallon of water, and got water changes only once a week. Yet they seemed to be doing better in there than in a new larger divided aquarium that I got for them, with more water, gravel, (plastic) plants, and more water changes!! What am I doing wrong?! :(

In a previous thread I posted about one of the fish possibly having pop-eye and not eating - I isolated him back into his small bowl, am changing his water daily, and he appears to be recovering, and is interested in food again.

Now the healthy fish that was living in half of the new aquarium started to appear listless, and after I did a full water change yesterday I noticed some fuzziness (probably fungus) attached to the bottom ends of his long fins, and the fins themselves look a bit pale down the ends. I immediately put some dissolved aquarium salt in, hoping it will help, and my husband will pick up some anti-fungal fish medicine today as I've got the flu and am feeling miserable, rather like my fish.

But seriously. What gives? Why were these fish doing BETTER in tiny bowls against all advice, than in a larger aquarium with more for them to do? I test their water. I change it 50% twice a week and 100% once a week, as advised for a 2.5-gallon tank, and do a gravel vacuum (well, I vacuum and use it to take out the water at the same time.) It's CLEAN, dang it.

I hate seeing my gorgeous fish being ill. What am I doing wrong? :(
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Old 03-13-2011, 06:50 PM   #2 
Oldfishlady
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Sometimes it is stress related that in turn compromises the immune response....with this species of fish...sometimes they fair better in smaller environments with little to no water movement....they can get stressed and tire due to the weight of the fins alone in large spaces and then the added stress of divided tanks with other Bettas with the instinct to defend their territory....some Bettas, not all can have negative reactions to more space and other Bettas.......not anything you are doing wrong per se.......often some Bettas have never been in environment any bigger than half gallon or less and have problems tolerating too much space too soon...sometimes-especially older males need to be gradually acclimated to more space and other males.......some males never have a problem...but some can......

Hope you start to feel better yourself.....
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Old 03-13-2011, 06:55 PM   #3 
Alexandrite
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Thanks Old Fish Lady... you are a fountain of fish wisdom :)

It's just that this fish seemed to be doing a lot better. He's been by himself in his half of the tank, while the other fish was isolated and recovering. Actually I think you are right, and it was stress from being introduced to the tank, that affected the other fish poorly (the one that is still isolated). :(

In my divided tank I have 2 layers of mesh and filter stuff stuck on the sides, to ensure they can't see each other. When I had them both in there for a day or so, they were not flaring and just going about their own business. I suppose they could probably still "smell" each other, I'm sure they have some sort of fishy senses to detect competition?

What should I do, though? :/

Just keep the water clean as I have been and use aquarium salt + anti-fungal stuff?

In a few weeks the nights here will get colder and I'll have to re-introduce the currently isolated fish back into the tank, to benefit from the heater. Obviously this will be once the fish that's in there has solved his fungus problem though. I hope it does not stress them out all over again :(

Last edited by Alexandrite; 03-13-2011 at 06:58 PM.
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Old 03-13-2011, 07:05 PM   #4 
Alexandrite
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Also do you think it's the more frequent water changes that stressed him out? But in a tank that size, there's really no alternative, is there?
And when both fish are in the tank they'll be pooping more and producing more ammonia in general..

If the ammonia level climbs past 0.25, obviously I can't just leave them in there with it...??
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Old 03-13-2011, 07:19 PM   #5 
Oldfishlady
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Live active growing plants.....
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Old 03-13-2011, 07:26 PM   #6 
Alexandrite
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Do you mean, plants to absorb the ammonia? Which ones would you recommend?

I have been considering plants, but not sure how I'd anchor them in and not disturb them when changing the water? There's also not a lot of light where the fishies are... (very basic tank, it has no lamp, but of course I can put a desktop lamp over it.) I have been hearing about "java fern", are they tolerant of low light, like terrestrial ferns?

My parents had an aquarium when I was growing up, with goldfish - live plants lasted about 2 weeks, the goldfish ate them all! :P
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:49 AM   #7 
Oldfishlady
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Without proper light the plants can't function well or actively grow using ammonia for food to help with water quality......

Most rooted type plants and floating plants work well for filters.....

Java fern is a great low light plant but it is a slow grower...it can help some but not like fast growing rooted and floating plants....

When you have rooted plants cleaning is different and you don't want to disturb the substrate or the roots...you don't do 100% water changes...the plants will use the mulm or fish waste for food.....
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