I don't have much experience with sickness, but my betta has red spots on his gills and behind his eyes (and also kind of on his body). I recently moved him to a five gallon tank. He was in a one gallon tank before, and I noticed this before I moved him. I noticed today that his belly seems to be turning white. At first I thought he seemed to be very happy, but now it's more like he's just moving and "flashing" around a lot, and getting a lot closer to the decorations in his tank (rubbing on them?) I've always had him at room temperature, even now, but I am planning on getting him a heater, which I will hopefully have tomorrow.
I read about velvet a little because I saw another post here about "rust" colors on a fish and something about velvet (which is what the red color looks like - rusty.)
I was shining a light on him and at certain angles it looks shiny and kind of golden. Is this velvet? If so, how do I treat it and how life threatening is it? The closest thing I have around here to buy fish supplies from is walmart and they don't have much variety to choose from.
What size is your tank? 5 gallons
What temperature is your tank? about 68 degrees (I know, please don't yell. I'll hopefully have a heater by tomorrow)
Does your tank have a filter? yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? not yet
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? none
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? trying to get him to eat the TetraBetta pellets again (he ate freeze dried bloodworms for awhile)
How often do you feed your betta fish? daily, if he'll even eat
How often do you perform a water change? once a week. He's been in this tank since Monday
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? Water conditioner
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? no
Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? yes, white belly and red spots
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? yes, he's way more active
When did you start noticing the symptoms? I noticed his belly today but the red spots have been there for at least a week, if not longer
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? no
Does your fish have any history of being ill? no
How old is your fish (approximately)? a year
I don't see anything, but it could just be the picture. Velvet looks like dust, so if you were to look from the front of the betta, you would see dust on his side. Like dust on a table. He definitely needs a heater and it's good that you're looking into that. It might be his natural coloring, my blue bettas also have a red coloring on their gills. Has he been eating?
It's kind of a long story... My dog ate his pellets so when I went to buy more, all walmart had were freeze dried blood worms. So he had those as his only food for a while, but I eventually did go back to walmart and got more pellets. He seemed uninterested in them after, so I kept feeding him the bloodworms until I found out they were only supposed to be fed as treats, so for the past two days I've been only offering him the pellets.
He does not act uninterested in them completely. He'll go up to them, sometimes put them in his mouth, and then spit them out again. Before he usually broke chunks off of them and ate them piece by piece. I tried soaking them before giving them to him, but he still won't eat them.
I am hoping that he just needs to get used to them again since he had bloodworms for some time. Like I said, he doesn't seem completely uninterested in them. Two days ago, he was still eating the bloodworms just fine.
I found a picture of a betta that has red in all the same places he does:
Of course, this fish has a lot brighter colors. The red on my betta seems to be a more rust color. I wasn't sure if I should be concerned or not, but I figured, better to be cautious. I'm hoping that once I get a heater he will brighten up and maybe his natural colors are somewhat like the fish above.
He doesn't have gold specks all over his body, but the darkest rust color has some very gold shiny spots when you shine a light directly on them. You can clearly see the blue that stands out on his body, but the darker spots are rusty-looking, its not just on his head (they aren't metallic-y like the blue is).
I'm sort of unsure what "dusty" looks like. :/
Last edited by AyalaCookiejar; 11-23-2012 at 02:41 AM.
Have you ever looked at dust from the side of a table? That's what it looks like, sort of like sprinkled dust on furniture. If the rusty coloring is in those same places on that fish, then it is most likely his normal coloring.
He might not be eating normally because he prefers bloodworms over pellets. If he has no other symptoms, he may not be sick.
I hope so. I doesn't really appear that way.. just, dull. And I figured that's why he wasn't eating... I just wanted to make sure. He doesn't have clamped fins or appear to be lethargic, although he does have random spazzing moments. Hopefully that just means he likes the extra room to swim around!
By more active - do you mean he's swimming around frantically or erractically? Fish that have velvet tend to swim quickly trying to rub themselves on anything and everything. As it gets worse, they will become very lethargic for long periods of time, and then dart around frantically rubbing on everything, then go back to resting.
In my experience, depending on the coloring of your fish, it doesn't always look exactly like dust. In my fish's case, as it got progressively worse, it looked like a thick gold or rusty colored coating and eventually, her color completely faded and she looked almost gray. Your fish looks ill from the picture, and the best 1st step in treating velvet is warm water. You can use something like quick cure (this treats a wide variety of things -so if it isn't velvet, you are treating for other things) that you can get from wal-mart in the mean time, but velvet is a parasite and thrives in cold water, so even if you manage to get it off your fish, it's not gone if you don't heat the water. So get quick cure and get a heater. Also if your new tank has a filter, you will need to take out the filter cartridge while you are using medication as they tend to counteract each other. You can keep the filter running, just take out the cartridge.
The beginning stages look like dust. It would have been very obvious if he was coated in a thick coating. I had a friend with a betta that had slime mold infection, which looked like a rusty, thick coating around her fish. Velvet is usually caused by poor water conditions and mostly affects tropical fish, so it prefers higher temperatures. Higher temperatures will speed up its life cycle. If he does have velvet it helps to keep him in a dark room, since the parasite is photosynthetic. It doesn't seem like he has velvet to me, but he does look a bit clamped up. When he darts, is it random, or is it when you put a hand over the tank, lean over, et cetera.
Once you get the heater for him you'll see a difference in his behavior & appearance. I think right now that is the biggest problem, his water is way too cold. If I'm not mistaken velvet can be treated by lights out, keeping the tank dark, it can take a couple of weeks. Have you looked at him using a flashlight?
Right now he is digging himself into the gravel. I can't say that he is trying to rub on it... it seems more like he's looking for food. He is putting intire pellets into his mouth and breaking them into pieces. When they sink, he digs his head into the gravel and picks up the pieces. He was also pulling out other things out of the gravel. The entire tank and is new and very clean, as of Monday, so I can't say his current water conditions are bad, although his old tank water was. It's like his lack of interest in the pellets is causing him to go searching for food at the bottom of the tank.
And yes, Ive looked at him with a flashlight. The spot on his gills and his face sort of looks orangish and dull. When shining a flashlight, those spots have a few gold shiny places at certain angles.
I am very concerned about adding the heater. Only because he has always been at room temperature and I do not want to acclimate him incorrectly. My brother is coming to town tomorrow and I believe he will be picking up a heater for my little guy.
Also, walmart has something called lifeguard, I believe. Is this similar to quick cure? I haven't gone up there today or yesterday because of work and also because I know it will be a zoo because of black Friday, but online it says it is available in my store.
And could someone explain what clamped fins look like?