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Old 02-22-2013, 08:11 AM   #1 
VegasShimmer
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What am I doing wrong?

Hello! Reading through all of the Betta forums over the past 2 months, I becomes interested in a larger, filtered setup for my Bettas. With that said, Marble and Vegas have recently become neighbors! It's a divided 10g with a baffled filter and heater. I am experimenting with some live plants because I prefer the natural look. The Bettas have been in the tank for about a month and seem to get along very well. Hardly any flaring or stress toward one another (10% flaring, 90% ignoring each other).

My problem is I can't seem to figure out why it's always so cloudy looking. I've been doing 10% water changes every week (because of the cloudiness), and using a gravel vacuum. I did a 50% change last night, vacuumed the gravel, and changed the filter, and it's cloudy again this morning?? Can the live plants make the water murky? What am I missing or doing wrong? I'm treating with Melafix (?) also because Vegas is a tail biter.

Note: I am not sure why the pic is sideways. I posted this from my phone, so I have no clue why it is that way??
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Last edited by VegasShimmer; 02-22-2013 at 08:17 AM. Reason: added note
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:52 AM   #2 
shellieca
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Congrats on the new bigger tank. If the tank is new & you didn't properly cycle (with an ammonia source) it before adding the fish you are now doing a fish INcycle, hence the cloudy water. Cloudy water is typically a bacteria bloom in a new tank & will usually go away in a week or two on its own. You will need to bigger water changes (50%+) & possibly more frequent. Do you have a liquid water test kit to check you ammonia, nitrItes, nitrAtes & Ph? If not, I strongly suggest getting one so you can make sure your tank is cycling & that the water is safe for the fish. Melafix is constroversial, most on here will advise against using it as it has an ingredient that can coat the labrynith & kill the Betta. I would suggest adding either more live plants or some silk plants until the live ones fill in so they have more cover. Also NEVER change out your filter media unless it is absolutely falling apart . . . if you are using the filter cartridges I would suggest looking into to changing them over to sponge, the sponge lasts so much longer & is easier to clean out in used tank water.

Last edited by shellieca; 02-22-2013 at 09:01 AM.
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:52 AM   #3 
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Hmm, the cloudiness could be caused by a bacterial bloom in the filter and should clear up on its own in a few days. Don't change any water for a week.

Stop using melafix immediately. It contains tea tree oil which can be harmful to the labrynth organ on both fish and you don't need to treat the whole tank for one nipped fin.

So stop using the melafix and do a water change THEN don't change water for a week. I would chance to say the BB cannot grow in the tank because of the melafix. And live plants should not be exposed to it either.


With 5 full gallons each, I would add a lot more decoration/plants for them to hide in. Those fish look a little freaked out about the open-ness.
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Old 02-22-2013, 08:54 AM   #4 
OrangeAugust
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You should be changing more than 10% of the water weekly. I change 25%-30% of the water in my 10 gal. weekly.
Sometimes new tanks get bacterial bloom in the beginning, which can make the water cloudy. But I think it settles by itself eventually.
Also, I've heard BAD things about using Melafix to treat bettas. It's bad for their labyrinth organ and can kill them.
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Old 02-22-2013, 09:59 AM   #5 
VegasShimmer
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Oh my! Thank you all for tips and help. I am now freaked out about the Melafix stuff. I have been using it for less than a week, so I am hoping no damage was done. I don't even think I have been putting in the recommended amount, just a few drops, because meds for fish make me nervous. I am thinking - should I just do a complete tear down and start over now? I will return that stuff and get some more plants tonight. They don't act freaked out and are always up front looking at people. Marble will dart sometimes, but he mainly just swims around looking at things, and Vegas doesn't have a care in the world. LOL! They seem fairly laid-back to me. I would think it is hard to tell if they were "freaked" by looking at a still picture, unless they had no color or were crouched in a corner. :)
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:10 AM   #6 
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Don't do a full tear down. You'll completely start your cycle over. That could be more stress. The bloom will go away eventually and your water will be crystal. Do another 30% - 45% change in your tank if your nervous about the melafix. I've read lots of good things about Indian Almond leaves. The tannis in the leaves are like a natures medicine. If you have a carbon media filter the carbon will neutralize the tannins. Thus a sponge media is recommended.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:35 AM   #7 
VegasShimmer
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Thanks BettaGurl79. I will a 30% change tonight also, and vacuum the gravel again. How often, if any, should I do a complete tear down?
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:46 AM   #8 
GailC
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I would never do a complete tear down unless you are planning on completely redoing the tank or there is a disease that wipes out all the fish. The longer a tank is up and running, the more beneficial bacteria there is doing their job.
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Old 02-22-2013, 10:49 AM   #9 
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Since youre betta is in the tank, your best option is to continue with the water changes and supplement the tank with some beneficial bacteria which can be sourced at a quality LFS.
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Old 02-22-2013, 12:52 PM   #10 
Laki
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Don't worry about tearing it down. It will be more stress and harm on the cycle.

Indian Almond Leaves. I vouch for them. They're cheap and holistic and imo/e so far the best thing at maintaining a healthy betta environment. I order mine from aquatic magic on ebay. Most other members here buy from amy lim or something. They're easy to find under the name indian almond leaves and catapappa leaves. The tan the water, lower pH and make a natural blackwater environment which mimics their habitats in Asia (even though a lot of betta splendens are bred in NA now)
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