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Old 09-15-2012, 01:00 PM   #1 
bajabluefish
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URGENT: Baby betta care- swimming in spirals

I have a baby betta, currently he is in a 1/2 gallon tank. He hasn't been able to eat much since I don't have daphnia, and bloodworms and pellets are too big.
He has been staying on the bottom of his tank, and recently has been "standing" on his tail fin. When he attempts to get air from the top, he swims in spiral swirls and it looks like he is having a seizure or something. I'm very concerned and don't know what to do.
Water is clean, and conditioned. Water is at 75 degrees, I'm trying to warm it without shocking him, but I don't have a heater.
Any information would help!
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Old 09-15-2012, 01:08 PM   #2 
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You can crush the pellets or soak them to make them soft. Mine eats pellets really well, he carries them around in his mouth while he chews them.

You definitely need a heater.

He might just be stressed because he's cold. I'm not sure what the rule is for baby bettas but if you can get some aquarium salt and dissolve 1/4 teaspoon and add it to the tank it might help.
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Old 09-15-2012, 01:11 PM   #3 
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Get him out of that tank its way to small!! He needs at least one gallon, even if he is a tiny baby. Change the water! If you haven't done this lately then do a 100% water change! Tanks that small need them done once, if not twice everyday!! Also to feed him crush up his bloodworms into a powder.
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Old 09-15-2012, 01:15 PM   #4 
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also get an ammonia test kit, ammonia build up will kill them pretty fast.
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Old 09-15-2012, 01:16 PM   #5 
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IME-when Betta fry twirl like that- it is due to poor nutrition and limited HUFA in the diet. If you act fast and depending on the Betta age and how long it has had poor nutrition and if its willing to eat.....You may or may not be able to save it....

If you have access to mosquito larva or any live food-feed that...You can use a brine shrimp net to collect the really tiny mosquito larva and daphania in standing water outside-provided you live in an area that supports them.
If not, newly hatched BBS with their yolk sac intact, gut loaded microworms or if you have any redworms outside..smash one up and offer that. Highly nutritious food is what is needed.....

You can float his half gallon in either a heated tank or warm water-but I wouldn't go over 78F....

Also, in his current condition-I would not move him to a larger container-the half gallon is fine and you might need to lower the water level to about 3 inches and cover the top with plastic veggie wrap to help retain the heat/humidity for the labyrinth organ.

Do you know how old it is?
Good luck....

Last edited by Oldfishlady; 09-15-2012 at 01:19 PM.
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Old 09-15-2012, 01:51 PM   #6 
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Thanks so much for all the help. I'm not sure how old he is, but he's so tiny. I'll try to smash the bloodworms into a mush so he can eat that. I lowered the water level so he can come up for air more easily, and i'm still working on heating it up more(kind of frustrating without a heater) but i'm trying. I'll head to petco soon for some ammonia tests also. Thanks for the help ya'll. I really hope he gets through this, he's so young!
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:11 PM   #7 
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i also hope he pulls through! it'd be tragic if he didn't!
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Old 09-15-2012, 07:19 PM   #8 
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Crossing my fingers for this little guy!
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Old 09-15-2012, 08:54 PM   #9 
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I've had my baby for about 2 weeks now. I was worried about the size of pellets too. I had plenty of mosquito larvae - but I was careful to get the small larvae for feeding (some of them seem a bit too large for the young ones to eat). Also, I had to really control myself to not overfeed. Its easy to drop in 4+ and you don't want the baby to eat too much too quick. Their stomachs are really small. You can easily see when they have a full belly, but they will still chase / eat more larvae.

As to harvesting the larvae, some people on here worried about bacteria and such from bad water quality outside. I ended up with a very cautious method for harvesting them. I still had their small plastic bowls. I used three. Two had a bit of water from the tank. One was empty. I used one with tank water to immediately put the larvae in while outside. Then I used very hot water to clean the net. Then poured the larvae (water and all) into the empty bowl using the net to catch the larvae. Then put them in the 2nd tank water bowl. I'm a bit OCD, so keep that in mind. :)

A lot of people on here recommended New Life Spectrum pellets. I don't know if they are awesome food, but they do have a lot of really tiny pellets. So you can pick them out to feed to the baby.
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