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Old 07-07-2011, 11:52 AM   #1 
pumpkinspikepie
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Swimming vertically

My male has never really had any problems, but this morning when I went to turn on his lights I spotted him in the back of his tank doing something weird. He was swimming in place, vertically though, with his face touching the surface. He wouldn't touch his food, which is very uncharacteristic of him. I scooped him out and put him in a cup, and he stopped moving altogether save for breathing.

Housing
What size is your tank? 15gal
What temperature is your tank? 80 degrees F
Does your tank have a filter? Two sponge filters
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Is your tank heated? Yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? Neon tetras, corydoras, an ivory snail

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? HBH Betta Bites
How often do you feed your betta fish? Twice a day, two pellets each time

Maintenance

How often do you perform a water change? Just did one on Sunday since we moved them to a new house
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 10-25%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? API StressCoat

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? Haven't yet, no
If so, what are the following parameters?

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

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? He seems a little flaky (like a snake shedding) around his face, otherwise he looks normal
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He's been swimming oddly by staying vertical with his face close to the surface. He refused his food.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? This morning, maybe 15 minutes ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No, he's been in perfect health since I got him in January
How old is your fish (approximately)? He was just about full-grown in January when I got him. I'm not sure.
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Old 07-07-2011, 12:22 PM   #2 
newbie32
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Some of his scales are flaking off? Does he have any decorations he could have rammed or scraped against? Injuries like that can cause scales to come off. Has he headbutted the snail? My betta once headbutted my snail and scraped his "nose." I assure you, he never did that again.

Is he only swimming in a verticle position? Never swimming any other way?

How often had you been doing water changes before you moved him to a new home? Perhaps water quality is an issue. Water needs to be changed (at least partially, dpeneding on size) regularly to stay clean and keep the fish healthy.

Are you removing any uneaten food immediately or are you leaving the food in the tank? That can also contribute to dangerous water quality conditions.
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Old 07-07-2011, 12:37 PM   #3 
CrowntailTwitchy57
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Maybe he just had a little run-in with a decoration, and it threw him off balance, is he breathing ok?
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Old 07-07-2011, 01:38 PM   #4 
pumpkinspikepie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newbie32 View Post
Some of his scales are flaking off? Does he have any decorations he could have rammed or scraped against? Injuries like that can cause scales to come off. Has he headbutted the snail? My betta once headbutted my snail and scraped his "nose." I assure you, he never did that again.

Is he only swimming in a verticle position? Never swimming any other way?

How often had you been doing water changes before you moved him to a new home? Perhaps water quality is an issue. Water needs to be changed (at least partially, dpeneding on size) regularly to stay clean and keep the fish healthy.

Are you removing any uneaten food immediately or are you leaving the food in the tank? That can also contribute to dangerous water quality conditions.
I've never seen him harass any of his tankmates unless they were eating, so I don't think it had to do with the snail. He might've bumped into something, but none of the decorations should be sharp enough to cause damage. When I was watching him, he was strictly swimming like that, yes.

I'd typically been changing the water partially once a week. He'd always eat all of his food, but I'd usually just leave the shrimp pellets in for my tetras and cories as somebody would inevitably finish them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrowntailTwitchy57 View Post
Maybe he just had a little run-in with a decoration, and it threw him off balance, is he breathing ok?
He might've. His breathing seems to be normal.
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Old 07-07-2011, 02:08 PM   #5 
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I just went downstairs to check on him. He passed away. I have no idea what might've happened to him.
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Old 07-07-2011, 02:09 PM   #6 
Irishdancer
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My fish swam like that sometimes when he was sick, and when I did some research online I found out that it could be a sign of stress or that he's too cold. Since you said that you moved him recently, is it possible that he's feeling a bit stressed from that?

I hope his head is okay. I'd be more worried about that than the swimming vertically.
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Old 07-07-2011, 02:13 PM   #7 
pumpkinspikepie
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He'd actually been totally fine with the move until just this morning. The stuff on his head was barely there, so I don't know if that was an actual contributing factor or not.
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Old 07-07-2011, 06:23 PM   #8 
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Is there anyone who can tell me what might've happened?
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Old 07-12-2011, 12:37 PM   #9 
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Based on his behavior and lack of symptoms, we think he might've been stung by one of the corydoras catfish. As I said, he usually left his tank mates alone, but sometimes he'd get overeager and try to eat the corys' shrimp pellets, and he might've gotten too close to them one too many times.
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