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Old 10-25-2012, 01:16 PM   #1 
fishaunt
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Fish-sitter seeking help

I am taking care of my nephew's fish Beatty. My sister brought him over last Saturday and said he didn't eaten much (maybe a couple bloodworms) over the previous week. She suspected two things: 1) she didn't change his water soon enough, as it was a few weeks (1 gal tank with filter); 2) the temperature of the water got too low one night.

Beatty continued to not eat at my house. He looks at the food like he's interested, but then darts away. Because I have a cold house, I moved his tank into my closet with a lamp (it also had natural light from a sola tube), where I have a heater to prevent mildew. The water is staying consistent at 76 degrees (but I feel a little bad putting him in there!) I talked to someone at the pet store who suggested frozen bloodworms--to throw a cube in there for a long time and see if he eats. I can't say for certain he didn't eat anything. It seemed like a bad idea b/c it clouded the water and Beatty then hung out at the bottom of the tank. Subsequently, I changed his water and added 1t/gal epsom salt on Tuesday night. He has since perked up and acts interested in food, but still doesn't seem to go for it. I also tried pellets and thawed bloodworms.

My sister will fetch him on Sunday, but I am wondering if you all have any thoughts on this. Thank you in advance.

Housing
What size is your tank? 1 gal.
What temperature is your tank? 76 degrees
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? Freeze dried bloodworms
How often do you feed your betta fish? Once per day

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? N/A
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? Almost 100 percent last time (didn't wash the gravel, silk plants)
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? dechlorinator

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? No -- test came out OK in pet store before latest change.

Symptoms and Treatment

How old is your fish (approximately)? Acquired in May
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Old 10-25-2012, 01:22 PM   #2 
LadyVictorian
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For a 1 gallon tank it should really be cleaned 3 times a week. 2 50% changes and 1 100%. There should also be a heater in it to keep the water warmer at night otherwise it stresses out the fish and can kill them. Bloodworms should only be fed once a week otherwise they should be on a pellet diet. Hope this helps.
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Old 10-25-2012, 02:33 PM   #3 
fishaunt
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LadyVictorian -- Thank you very much. I will continue cleaning and pass this on to my sister. Does a bigger tank require less cleaning? (I think that would be attractive to my sis). I think I saw someone recommend 2.5 gal minimum (and that is needed for a heater, correct?)
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Old 10-25-2012, 04:27 PM   #4 
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A 2.5 gallon would need less cleaning yes, only 1 50% water change and 1 100% tank cleaning a week. A five gallon would only need 1 50% water change and gravel cleaning a week and if cycled that would be it, if not cycled then 1 100% tank cleaning a month.
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Old 10-25-2012, 07:25 PM   #5 
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Here's a link on this forum about recommended water changes based on tank size and filteration and live plants vs. no live plants. http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=115758

This might be helpful for your sister in picking out a better set up if she doesn't want to a lot of water changes in a week. But let her know that if she has live plants, she shouldn't do a 100% change because it's stressful for the plants, plus she shouldn't need to with the cycle and bacteria that the plants provide.
Also make she gets a tank heater, Bettas are tropical and need more warmth than house heaters can supply.
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Old 10-25-2012, 07:51 PM   #6 
fishaunt
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LadyVictorian and sainthogan -- I very much appreciate your responses, especially since I'm asking really basic questions!
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Old 10-25-2012, 09:54 PM   #7 
rleroy1967
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If your betta isn't eating there may be a problem with the food. If your sister gave you pellets to feed it maybe they are old and stale. You may just pick up some Tropical Medley that is a mixture of flakes and brine shrimp. My bettta won't even touch the pellets. But he'll eat these all day long if I let him. Hope this helps.
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Old 10-25-2012, 10:03 PM   #8 
Silverfang
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Sometimes a bit of garlic can stimulate their appetite. Crush a clove and soak their food (pellets, flakes (not recommended) or frozen bloodworms) in the juice and then offer. I've only had one fish turn their nose up at frozen food. And she was fresh from the pet store. Had no idea what they were.

When feeding frozen I like buying in sheets. I break of a small bit (REALLY small!) And feed probably three to a fish. I have a small tray, an eye dropper, spoon and knife I use only for this. It gets very tedious to feed them frozen foods as a staple.
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Old 10-26-2012, 10:47 PM   #9 
fishaunt
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Thank you, rleroy1967. The pellets are new, but I'll check out the Tropical Medley.
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Old 10-26-2012, 10:51 PM   #10 
fishaunt
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Silverfang - Thank you. So the bloodworms are still frozen (or do they thaw anyway while you prepare your concoction)? The eye dropper--is that to place it in front of them, or take out uneaten ones?
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