Originally Posted by LugiaChan
My new fish freaks out when I put my hand over his tank OR if I open his tank. He swims to the bottom and tries to hide. How do I feed him if he does this and when he does surface the food passes right by him without him doing anything?
He's brand new so he may be under going a whole lot from being a rescue. And this guy is nearly impossible to catch, I don't want to stress him further by getting him into a small container just to eat every time o.o And the food falls past him to the bottom. He likes to swim near the heater and rest on it or on the bottom of the tank.
Tank: 3.69 gallon, heater, filter, declorinator.
Foods: Pellets, flakes, freeze dried brine shrimp and bloodworms.
Ok. Go buy a $2.50 packet fo Hikari Betta Bio-Gold pellets for him. They float for a good long time - you can drop a few in (you're supposed to feed five of them, two to three times a day - they're tiny) and walk away for a while so he can examine and eat them in private.
One of my new bettas did exactly what yours is doing. He didn't eat anything for me until I switched him to the Hikari pellets and walked away to let him discover. It took him weeks to decide that I'm not going to eat him... and then one day abruptly he blew a bubble nest, started doing the happy dance for me, stares at me, etc.
One thing that seems to be helping get my bettas un-afraid of me is to put them on my desk by my computer at home. (One at a time of course.) Not in the back, but in the front, right by the keyboard. After a day or two of enforced proximity to me, they seem to catch on that I'm the bringer-of-all-good-things, not the eater-of-bettas, and get interested in me instead of hiding from me. Soon they start staring at my face, watching my hands use the keyboard and mouse, they get excited when a hand happens to pass near the container of pellets, etc. He's staring at me right now, as healthy and well adjusted as I could hope for.
In summary: switch to the pellets that float longer, give him privacy to discover and eat, but be around him a lot when he's not eating. He'll get over it pretty soon.