Betta Fish Care  
Go Back   Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care > Betta Fish Diseases and Emergencies
Check out the eBook Betta Fish Care Made Easy
betta fish
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 12-30-2012, 06:11 PM   #1 
string105
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Floating and Tummy Bulge

I've had my fish for about a week now and yesterday I noticed him floating at the surface. He would try to swim to the bottom but would float back up straight away. It's also having trouble staying upright and sometimes floats on it's side. It has a bit of a bulge on his underside just behind the gills which is also lost a bit of colour. Despite all this it's still fairly active and still swims around the top of the tank.

Everything I've read is that I have overfed the fish and that it's overfilled gut is pressing on it's swim bladder which is effecting it's balance. Is that more or less right? I was feeding him 6 of these micro pellets I got with the fish, twice a day, as recommended by the fish shop guy. This was before I read that their stomach is the size of their eye. I stopped feeding it and did a 50% water change. It's on it's own in a 10 litre tank. I had done another 50% water change 3 days earlier. I left it overnight and this morning it's condition is the same. Is there anything else I can be doing for him?
Attached Images
 
string105 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2012, 06:26 PM   #2 
shellieca
Reference Team
 
shellieca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario, CA
Fast him for about 3 days & see if that makes a difference. You can also add pure Epsom salt, make sure it doesn't have any perfumes or other additives. 10 liters is roughly 2.5g, add 1 tsp salt into a cup of water, make sure its COMPLETELY dissolved then pour into the tank. I think you can go up to 1 tsp per gallon but I'd start on the lower end. Is his tank heated? If not it should be, Bettas should be in water 76-80F.
shellieca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2012, 07:55 PM   #3 
callistra
Member
 
callistra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Epsoms - pure magnesium sulfate - is great for constipation and swim bladder issues, but I would like to make sure we're not missing anything important, so if you would fill this out it would be great: http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=49233

Exactly what pellets are you feeding? 6 x 2 or 12 is a ton even with little pellets.
callistra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2012, 08:41 PM   #4 
string105
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Thanks for the super quick replies. I popped out and got some epsom salt. Mixed 1 teaspoon in a cup and poured it into his water. Pretty soon after he let out an enormous poo. He's still floating but I think that was the problem.

Anyway, here's the list, sorry I didn't fill it out. I thought I'd just drop the important parts into the actual post.

Housing
What size is your tank? 2.5 Gallons
What temperature is your tank? Thermometer is on the list of this to get. The fish shop guy said he doesn't use a heater with his and doesn't have problems. Middle of an Australian summer I guess helps
Does your tank have a filter? Yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Is your tank heated? No
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Packet says: Hikari Tropical Micro Pellets, great for tetras, barbs and small fish. They are about 0.5mm diameter dry, slighty bigger soaked.
How often do you feed your betta fish? Up to now 6 pellets twice a day. Will definitely be cutting back.

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Had the tank for 6 days. Have performed 2 x 50% water changes. I'm sure it's posted hundreds of times around here, but what should I be doing?
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? I use Seachem Prime in the new water that goes in. Says it removes chlorine, choramine and ammonia. Detoxifies nitrite and nitrate and provides slimecoat.

Water Parameters:
Fish shop guy said it wasn't worth getting a test kit.

Thanks again for the help, I'll let you know how he gets on. I'm fairly new to fish so all suggestions are welcome
Attached Images
 
string105 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2012, 09:41 PM   #5 
callistra
Member
 
callistra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
That poop does not look good.. is it kinda white/clearish or mucus coated? It appears to be.. that would be infection.. He's going to need to stay on epsom salt for at least a good week or two, but we'll get back to the poo color when you confirm what I think I'm seeing..

If your house stays a stable 80F+ you probably don't need a heater. If your house temp jumps around (it falls several degrees at night) or is cooler you do need one. I can imagine in some parts of Australia with unairconditioned homes it might not be necessary.. I would get an in tank thermometer.. something that looks like this: http://www.amazon.com/Marina-Floatin...id=1356925317& and check out the bowl temp. If it's 77+ he's probably ok. You don't want it too much over 80 though as that will speed up his metabolism and lead to a shorter life span. Most people like to keep them around 78-79.

Hikari used to make one of the best pellets on the market but a few years ago they changed their formula and now they're mostly wheat and fillers. They swell horribly - more than any other pellet I'd experimented with. Due to this they tend to cause these issues in bettas.

I would try to get a different pellet. Here in the US, Omega One Betta Buffet and New Life Spectrum Betta are what I like. NLS is an international company and I know other NLS prodcuts are available there so that might be your best shot. With those due to their size you want to feed 5-8 split up into two or three smaller feedings. No matter what you feed your fish needs one fast day a week with no food for his digestive system to catch up. What you want to look for, generally, is a pellet whose first two or three ingredients is whole fish. Not fish meal and not wheat. You also want something without artificial colors and things, if you can.

2.5g tanks are very hard to maintain a cycle in. A lot of people would tell you not to even bother trying to cycle anything smaller than 5 gallons, but you can try. Just know you will always have to monitor ammonia, nitrite and nitrate and you may need to more frequent water changes. What you will need is a drops (not strips) test kit for ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. Your LFS should not have told you that you don't have to monitor these during cycling as that was reckless and can be lethal for your fish. You only don't need to monitor if you're going to be doing 100% weekly water changes. In the US, this is a popular kit: http://www.amazon.com/API-Freshwater...qid=1356925102 You test daily for ammonia and nitrites. Any time you see even as much as .25ppm ammonia or nitrite you do a water change.. as much as 50%. At first you will see ammonia spike. Keep testing and keep making water changes and eventually ammonia will go to 0 and you will see a nitrite spike. Nitrites should eventually fall to zero leaving you only with nitrates to deal with - and at that point a single 50%-75% water change a week might be all you need, or you may find you need a couple large water changes over the week to maintain water quality. A fully established tank will have 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and weekly water changes should keep nitrates <20ppm. Cycling can take up to 2 months - and that's for larger tanks. IDK about one this small. It could be longer or never fully establish.

A 2.5 tank without a filter would require two water changes a week - one 50% and one 100%. The filter should hopefully eventually reduce this need to something smaller.

Last edited by callistra; 12-30-2012 at 09:46 PM.
callistra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2012, 10:27 PM   #6 
string105
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Melbourne, Australia
The poop did look like you could see right through it, or at least very pale when it was in the water, but when I scooped it out, it was quite brown. I smeared it a bit, there were no chunks it was brown the whole way through. Pictures attached.

Stupid question, there is still a little poop dangling from the fish, is that normal?

A heater, new food and a test kit are top of the list for the new year.

Thank you so much for the advice callistra. I must admit keeping a fish is a little intimidating. Everything is so different to the cats and dogs that we have, but I think it will work out.
Attached Images
  
string105 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-30-2012, 10:32 PM   #7 
callistra
Member
 
callistra's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Okay then. Just watch him carefully and make sure the poop stays brown when while it's coming out of him, and it's coming out coated in mucus or clearish. Yeah.. it's gross but sometimes it takes them a while to move it all out. It'll come eventually. He should perk up in a couple days in the epsoms, though I would continue at least a week. If he doesn't or seems to be getting worse let us know, or if the poop doesn't look right.

I know it's a lot to learn but they're so much fun once you get the hang of it :D Good luck!
callistra is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-03-2013, 04:54 AM   #8 
string105
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Melbourne, Australia
So it's been 3 days since I last posted, and the fish is still floating, mostly upright, but on his side when he gets tired. 2 days ago I did a 100% water change and added 2 teaspoons of epsoms to the water that went in. The water temp is at about 80 degrees F. That's without heater, it was about 100 degrees F outside today and the forecast is to stay the same for next few days, but I bought a heater anyway.

I started feeding him a little bit yesterday, just 2 pellets twice a day, and he still has a very healthy appetite. I have tracked down some NLS betta food and that should be here early next week. He has been swimming around still, occasionally swimming to the bottom and then floating back up. He has passed some more poop and it looked about the same.His belly isn't as bulgy as it has been. but is still silverly in colour. You can kind of see it in the picture.

The strangest part is that he stopped floating and could actually swim normally for a little while, before going back to floating. This happened twice.

Any more advice on what to do next?
Attached Images
 
string105 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2013, 02:16 AM   #9 
string105
New Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Melbourne, Australia
bump
string105 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-2013, 03:39 AM   #10 
SharkyTheBetta
Member
 
SharkyTheBetta's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Romania
If he started to swim normally from time to time it is a good sign. I would feed him a small part of a pea. First, you choose a pea, fresh or frozen (make sure it doesn't have any salt or preservatives), drop it into boiling water to soften it. Water used for boiling has to be dechlorinated, you can take it from the tank. After cooking the pea, you have to remove its skin and feed a small portion of the soft pea to your betta. Make sure the pea is soft and cooled before feeding. Do not feed any more food in the day you give him the pea.

Last edited by SharkyTheBetta; 01-04-2013 at 03:44 AM.
SharkyTheBetta is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
HELP! new fish has a bulge ALS1104 Betta Fish Diseases and Emergencies 6 12-11-2011 12:43 PM
Something hanging from tummy(??) Betta1234 Betta Fish Diseases and Emergencies 8 05-18-2011 11:41 AM
My betta has a bulge chelsey07 Betta Fish Diseases and Emergencies 13 10-09-2009 05:35 PM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:31 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.