A Betta can't exercise enough in a gallon. Doesn't matter how experienced you are, a betta will slow down in small capacities like a gallon. He or she can't swim at full speed, and if they try they get a face full of wall. With a gallon you have to make frequent water changes which will stress them out and the fact that they will have to be in immaculate water conditions can lower your bettas immune system making them prone to disease. Some people don't want to hear it but this is the reality of the situation.
Last edited by Reefing Madness; 12-03-2012 at 08:41 AM.
Reason: Lets settle down some
Lethargy is a common symptom in several different betta diseases. By the sounds of it, it is probably not ammonia poisoning if you test regularly. Doing an extra 50% water change a week would not hurt, though.
I'm assuming you've looked at the betta fish disease stickies?
I don't mean to cause a stir, but I respect every ones opinion. Please do not bicker, I have a sick little man, and this thread was started to get help for my little guy. Fact is, I have had betts for many years, in small tanks and aquariums, and honestly I've never seen them act any differently.
Each to their own, please respect other people and their methods.
I have done a 50% change this morning, and will do again tomorrow.
He hasn't any stress stripes, still eating well, playing and rising to the surface, he's just not his usual self..
I have looked at diffrent pictures, read diffrent threads, jusy nothing that I haven't already done or tried has popped up..
I have recently read a lot of posts of people whose fish are abnormally lethargic.. Unfortunately sometimes it's very hard to pinpoint what the problem could be when there are no other symptoms, and most of the time they get better with just warm, clean water. It's good that he is eating well and not spending ALL of his time at the bottom, though. There's definitely hope. :)
I'd avoid changing the water too often as he might already be stressed (although I don't know why he would be). Personally I'd try another 50% change in another two days, and I'd give him a bit of peace and quiet and maybe keep his tank dark to make him feel a bit more secure.
I agree that tank size can vary and it sounds like you take great care of your fish. A fish in a well kept-up one gallon tank will thrive more than a fish in a ten gallon that's never kept-up.
A clear picture would help.
Are the fins clamped? any fuzzies on the body?
Swim bladder would cause funny swimming but...they normally act fine..they just swim sideways, upside down, can't swim down, ect.
and yes, bettas can live in a 1 gallon tank IF certain standars are met and according to OFL - you still only need 2 water changes a week for a 1 gallon. They don't have a high bioload. However, bigger is always nice :)