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Old 09-13-2012, 11:36 PM   #1 
cjz96's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Unhappy Sick Baby

Hi, I am new to keeping betta fry. I picked up 3 a couple days ago. One seems to not be doing well. Thank you for your help!
What size is your tank? .5 gallon hospital
What temperature is your tank? 86F
Does your tank have a filter? No
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Is your tank heated? Yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Homemade
How often do you feed your betta fish? 3-4 small meals a day

How often do you perform a water change? 50% once a day
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Stress Coat Plus and Oak Leaves

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?
9-14-12 test:
Ammonia: 0
Nitrate: 0ppm
pH: 7.4 (added oak leaves to lower ph)

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Bought a betta fry a couple days a go due to pure guilt. She had (still does) clamped fins and was looking pretty bad in her cup. She is very lethargic compared to the other fry. She has an abnormally big head and she has a trouble time swimming. She often ends up on her side or upside down when trying to get a breath so I lowered her water level.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? She has stopped eating as of today. She started gasping for air even though her tests came back normal.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? A couple days ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? Tannin source; warm water.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Not sure.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Maybe 5-6 weeks? She (or he) is about 3/4 of an inch.

Last edited by cjz96; 09-13-2012 at 11:49 PM.
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Old 09-14-2012, 02:22 AM   #2 
Tikibirds's Avatar
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Shangdong, China
Awwwh. Poor fishie.

Did you test the ammonia of the cup she was in? its possible the ammonia was really high. I picked up a baby last week because it was the only one left and you had to really look at it to see if it as breathing. I tested the ammonia and it turned blue so it was over an 8.0. I am very surprised it is still alive. What I am using is epsom because it can't swim and amquel plus for the ammonia poisioning. I doubt the epsom will help you but maybe maybe aquarium salt will. It's supposed to help the gills somehow

try Pming sakura8 or oldfishlady for advice for they know all
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Old 09-14-2012, 08:28 PM   #3 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Elk Grove, California
Hi cjz. Unfortunately, the conditions that those poor fry are kept in are not conducive to long-term survival. :( Even the lowest registered amount of ammonia, 0.25 ppm, can be severely detrimental to a young fry. The levels in those cups, as Tiki stated, are sky-high. :( It would be like immersing a 6 week old baby in a room filled with carbon monoxide. Even if you get the baby out in time, irreversible damage may have already been done.

I'm concerned about that big head. It sounds like a buildup of fluids, hopefully not in her brain. The epsom salts will definitely help for the swelling and the tannins will help to ward off further infection. Beyond that, not much more can be done to relieve the swelling.

As far as I can see, you are doing everything you possibly can to help the little girl. If she has any chance at all, it's going to be because you got her into all the right conditions ASAP.

I wish I could give you great news and say she'll come around but my own experience with Petco babies has been 1 out of 3 so far and the 1 survivor only because she was quite large for a baby and fairly robust.

Keep us updated and good luck.
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Old 09-15-2012, 12:51 AM   #4 
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: NYC
I would say to change out all of the water everyday... just to get them growing fast enough :(
My babies grew up in .5g planted tanks... an for te longest time I wa doing 100% everyday. until oneday I realized that the plants sucked up all the ammonia anyway... lol
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