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Old 02-09-2013, 02:52 PM   #21 
breeglet
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This is getting frustrating...

I do not need to gravel vac. The debris on the floor of the substrate are food for my plants and snail. 20% water changes are fine for my tank. I am familiar with OFL, and she has supported my methods in the past. If you read the thread you cited, she clearly states that tanks with live plants basically don't all follow the same regime. Every tank is different, and I know what works for my tank. I know about the nitrogen cycle. I know what I'm doing works, because my water readings are consistently clean. The insane speed at which my plants grow supports this. This is not at all any of the information I've asked for, nor need, nor want to get hammered with.

I already said I would only use the maracyns if it got worse, because what I'm already doing is working.

With the new images, even I've been able to get a better look at the abrasions than I was getting before. What I thought were white growths don't look like growths at all, just a different coloration of the abrasions. Nothing is fuzzy or protruding on him, he is not showing any symptoms of illness. This changes the nature of things, as my fears about it being the early stages of columnaris or some kind of fungal development clearly don't seem to be what's going on - at least from my perspective and understanding of things.

I have never seen what missing scales look on a fish before, and images on Google are blurry and not helpful, that is why I have asked for someone to comment on what the abrasions look like. I am glad that people have responded, but it is not really the information that I am looking for. I'm looking for educational responses in regards to the actual condition I am describing, I do not need to know about tank maintenance. Callistra's post is more along the lines I am looking for - explaining that what I thought was flashing behavior actually isn't - educating me on what I'm looking at and observing. Krys was good too. Now that I have much clearer images of Felix's abrasions, I am hoping someone will tell me if they look like missing scales or not. For now it feels like most of the commentors aren't even fully reading my posts...

Last edited by breeglet; 02-09-2013 at 02:55 PM.
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:44 PM   #22 
Otterfun
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I am sorry and saddened to hear of your frustration.

People here are not necessarily knowledgeable and educated aquarists, but we love our betta and we offer what we know and hopefully you can gleen some helpful info/epxeriences. Some of our bettas helped us to be better owners and we share our experiences. So far, people here are nice and empathetic IME.
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:14 PM   #23 
breeglet
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I know, and I do appreciate when people take the time to comment... just not when it's completely off the road I'm trying to travel. Does it make sense that attacking my husbandry (a by extension, assuming I am clueless about how to run a tank even after I have defended myself) is far less helpful than giving me a hand in figuring out what I'm looking at? I mean, I don't think I come off as someone who is utterly clueless and ignorant to tank maintenance so I guess I don't understand why I'm getting that thrown at me when all I want to focus on are the abrasions and what they are. How they got there can come second.
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:39 PM   #24 
LittleBlueFishlets
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Have you thought about sending a message to OFL or Sakura? One of them may be able to diagnose the issue.

Also, some of the more experienced breeders may be able to identify the issue. (I'm figuring that since they have more fish, they also have a lot of experience solving fish-related issues.)

Or you could try going to www.tropicalfishkeeping.com and starting a threat on the tropical fish diseases forum. (This forum is a subsite on that forum, so if it's not a disease specific to Bettas, perhaps someone there can ID it.)

If none of that helps, you could try contacting a university that has a 'fish-husbandry' program. They could probably diagnose the problem based on photos of your guy.

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Old 02-09-2013, 08:43 PM   #25 
breeglet
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I had thought about it, I just didn't want to seem bothersome.. I PM'd callistra and (he/she??) answered so I'm happy about that. :)

I will try PMing them.
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Old 02-09-2013, 11:54 PM   #26 
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Hi breeglet. So sorry to hear about the problems your guy is having.

You said the white patches look more like indentations in the scales than thick patches ON TOP of the scales? Just curious but have you tried taking him, very briefly out of water? If they were indeed indentations, it might show up clearer out of water.

My initial reaction is it is either columnaris (flexibacter columnaris) or an external parasite such as tetrahyema, which often appears in conjunction with flexibacter. Both can cause ulcerations which may be what we're seeing here. It's possible that the tetrahyema caused enough significant damage to the scales and skin that flexibacter set in, causing the grayish patches over the scale loss.

Has treatment with the AQ salt done anything at all to help? I do prefer to try holistic methods first, especially when I'm not sure if I'm dealing with a parasite or a bacteria, but if the AQ salt isn't really doing anything then there are a few medical options, ranging in strength and harshness of treatment.

On the lowest end of the scale is daily baths in double strength methylene blue. 1 tsp per 5 gallons makes a double strength bath or I guess in this case, probably roughly 1/2 tsp in his 2 gal. A half hour a day, maybe a few minutes more if he shows no distress. Methylene blue can sometimes be quite effective in treating conditions that are hard to diagnose and is relatively harmless to the system.

You can also try a bath of potassium permanganate at roughly double the recommended dosage for 10 minutes a day (somewhere around 5-10ppm per gallon). Do not use a dechlorinator in the water if you use potassium permanganate, as the dechlorinator will just remove the PP. Carefully observe the fish for signs of distress. Do not use this in a planted tank; it will destroy your beneficial bacteria and it will also inhibit photosynthesis in your plants.

Next would be treating with API Fungus Cure. While columnaris isn't a true fungus, the combination of ingredients in Fungus Cure may prove effective in treating what could be both a parasite and a bacteria problem.

For the most heavy-duty punch, you would combine a parasitic product such as Seachem ParaGuard with a strong antibiotic such as Seachem Kanaplex. However, since it looks like your guy is still active and otherwise acting okay, I would not recommend this course just yet.
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Old 02-10-2013, 02:14 AM   #27 
breeglet
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Thanks for your reply Sakura. :)

The patches have decreased in size by at least 50% since starting the AQ/garlic water. There are flat white dots in the center of the healing site. The patches have gone from gray to light brown- the color of his stress stripes which makes me believe it is his natural color

Medications I have on hand are triple sulfa, jungle fungus clear, Tetra paraguard, and maracyns. I can buy kanaplex if it comes to that.

I am scared to take him out of water... like out into the open air? Oh gee...
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Old 02-10-2013, 09:55 AM   #28 
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Sounds like you have good instincts and handle on the issue....sometimes it patience is all that is left...lol....and the hardest....lol.....I would keeping doing what you are doing and give him a bit more time.
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:13 PM   #29 
Sakura8
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How is he doing now? Has the AQ salt still been helping? If he still looks bad after the 14 days of salt are up, go with the Fungus Clear that you have on hand,
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Old 02-12-2013, 06:43 PM   #30 
breeglet
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Oh... he died yesterday while I was changing out the bowl. :T I noticed some green/browning at the base of his tail and he was acting kind of strange out of the blue.

I really appreciate everyone's responses. His patches had completely healed, but I guess something else was going on as well. I'm beginning to believe the supplier at my LFS has a bug going around, because this is the second betta that has died on me within just a couple weeks for seemingly unknown reasons. I hate to say it, but I think I'll be scouting Petsmart or Petco for my next betta. That or find a different LFS or maybe a trusted breeder.

I was/am particularly sad about Felix because Saturday night I was 100% confident he was recovering and that he was going to live for several years and be a happy betta. He was such a unique-looking guy, too... I've never seen a betta - even in pictures - quite like him. :T
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