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Old 11-29-2012, 08:53 PM   #1 
PaintedOaksOki's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Canada
Curious To Know...

My betta fish, Strausse died the other day, while I was away to Mexico, (only for the week) and his beard was out when I saw him... Is that normal? I will admit that he was not in the greatest conditions when we left, dealing with a bit of fin rot. I cleaned out his 7.5 gal COMPLETELY before we left, I removed him from his tank and gave it a really good scrub down. So do you think ammonia would cause his beard to be out like that at death or would it have been a more... Peaceful thing? I really hope it wasn't ammonia I feel guilty as it is for thinking they'd be okay while we were gone...
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Old 11-29-2012, 09:27 PM   #2 
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I'm sorry you lost your guy :(

Honestly, it could of been ammonia if your tank was cycled and with you cleaning it out, wiped the cycle away so it had to restart.. and with cycling, ammonia/nitrate/ite spikes happen easily. With his beard being out, I would consider it to be something dealing with the chemistry, as ammonia poisoning and such does cause gasping and panting through the gills.
This all depends on whether or not you had a filter going and if you had changed the filter media and the substrate fully. As even if some bacteria survived, it could of still cause a mini cycle to pop up.

It isn't a for sure thing that it was ammonia.. his body could of just relaxed in death and his beard just slid out. Unfortunately, no way to tell for sure now.

In case you have to leave again for an extended time - when you have a tank over 5g that is cycled, just do a 50% water change and make sure to just siphon the substrate out real good.. no need to do more than that.
And if it was just a partial change, then forgive me.. unsure of the small specifics.

Again, I am so sorry you lost him.. I truly am. Don't blame yourself.. you did what you believed was best for him and that counts.It was out of your control :(
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Old 11-29-2012, 10:55 PM   #3 
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Florida
I agree with the above. It isn't a sure thing that it was an ammonia spike. It could have been stress, which has many different factors. If you copy and fill out the form here so we could have a bit more information, it might be a little easier for us to ponder the different things that may have gone wrong, but don't be too hard on yourself as you did what you could.

In any case, you may never know what happened. Some fish just pass away mysteriously for no apparent reasons, regardless of the care provided, but I do agree that it helps to maybe try to figure out some things that you could have done differently to ensure that it doesn't happen again.

I am very sorry for your loss. It's always hard to say goodbye and to not blame ourselves. :(
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:09 AM   #4 
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Location: Jakarta, Indonesia
Sorry for you loss.

IMO, Suffocation - a number of probabilities; either he was unable to reach the surface or he was unable to inhale oxygen due to health problems which influenced his breathing organs, or unacceptable water chemistry.

Mysterious sudden death is often associated with infection to the breathing organs. The betta may look active and healthy one minute, but suddenly have trouble breathing and die in minutes to hours.
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Old 11-30-2012, 05:03 PM   #5 
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Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Canada
I think it may have been the same day that he died because I was panicking to find him worried I'd find him dead somewhere. And I did find him dead at the bottom :( He was still colorful and fully intact with all his fins and such. It kind of looked like he had been swimming and then did a nose dive head first into the gravel D:

Gosh it makes me shiver just thinking about it, about he how he could of suffered and so much more...

I'm just thankful that Tug is still alive! I am going to give him to my friend though... I don't want to kill another fish, and I know he'll be loved with her. It breaks my heart but I don't want to stress him out either with a ten hour drive to our new home with me and my two crazy siblings...

AH! This is painful. Thanks for the help though guys.. I really hope his beard just slid out in relaxation.
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