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Old 09-11-2013, 06:57 AM   #21 
peeptoad
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Originally Posted by LittleBlueFishlets View Post
So your tap water has 1.0 ppm ammonia straight out of the faucet, and a pH of 8.2?

You can:

1) use a conditioner that temporarily neutralizes ammonia, such as Prime. (There are other brands that do this as well.)

These work by converting ammonia (bad) to ammonium (not bad). But they only do this for about 48 hours.

Since they only work for 48 hours, you either need to redose the conditioner every other day, or physically remove the ammonia-tainted water and replace it with better water.

2) Lower the pH via natural means such as tannins.

At a lower pH, ammonia will convert to ammonium on its own. This is good.

At a higher pH, such as your 8.2, the reverse occurs. Ammonium converts over to ammonia. This is bad.

You can add things to the water that leach tannins. Tannins have some antimicrobial properties (this is good), and naturally lower the water pH (also good).

Tannin sources include:
a) Indian Almond Leaves (IAL), which are found in Indonesia, where bettas come from. They can be ordered through eBay. (Do a search for Amy. Lots of people on this forum have recommended her.)
b) Oak Leaves (OL), which are common in much of North America. Be sure the leaves are pesticide-free. Rinse them off to remove dirt, and place the in the tank. They'll slowly leach tannins into the water.
c) Wood such as Mopani Wood, which can usually be purchased at petstores.
d) In a pinch, people have even used decaffeinated teas! The tan/brown color from tea is due to tannins.

3) Add bottled drinking or spring water. Be sure these say something such as "minerals added for flavor."

You don't want to use distilled water (unless your own water is hard). Distilled water lacks the electrolytes needed to maintain good health.

I prefer to use drinking water, or spring water, that specifically states it contains dissolved minerals (salts). These provide the necessary electrolytes.

Also, test for ammonia on the bottled water too. It's possible that the manufacturer disinfects the water with ammonia or chloramines. If this is the case, using that particular brand won't help you.

4) Cycling your tank.... is a whole different world though. There needs to be ammonia present, in order to begin the nitrogen cycle. I'm not particularly familiar with the process, as I don't cycle my tanks. If no one on this forum addresses this aspect, I would ask on the Bowls/Habitats forum. The people there are cycling experts.

How is he doing today? Any better?
Thanks a lot LittleBlueFishlets. This is very helpful information.
Unfortunately, yes, my tap water seems to be high in ammonia, high pH, and is relatively hard (prob. due to high pH and mineral content).
I am actually not cycling a tank right now as I have my little guy in a 2-gal bowl without a filter (but with a heater set in the 76-78 range). I really think the filter current was causing him stress. I wish I could say he was doing better, but he isn't. He hasn't eaten anything since Sunday afternoon, but he isn't completely lethargic either. He has periods where he stays on the bottom of the bowl and other times he swims/darts around (though not with as much energy as usual).
I currently have him in a 50-50 mix of distilled and conditioned tap water, however I have not received the Prime yet (it is on order, so hopefully in the next day or two). I panicked due to the ammonia in the water, so I mixed in the distilled. I imagine he is still getting some electrolytes since he is in some tap water. Not ideal, but it will have to do until the Prime gets here.

I think going forward (if he survives this ordeal) I am going to keep him in the 2-gal, heated bowl using the Prime to condition the tap H2O. And I will probably just re-dose it several times a week to keep the ammonia converted, and do a 100% water change weekly.

I also plan on dosing him with the Maracyn 2 maybe this weekend (still have aq. salt in the water right now- 2 tsp/gallon).

I hope he makes it through this- I'm starting to get depressed because I can tell he is in some distress (not eating, not acting normally). But he also does not appear to be on death's door knocking either.
Wish I had known about the contaminants in my tap water before getting a fish, but oh well.
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Old 09-11-2013, 11:05 AM   #22 
ANHEL123
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sorry he is not doing good:( I didn't know he stopped eating. Does he eats anything? How about those flakes that he ate before? And he still refusing frozen food?
Is his tail the same or worse?
Are you still able to maintain the temperature in his tank?
You saying that he is darts around. Is it recently that he does it? Do you see anything new on his body, like white dots? Is it looks like he is scratching on objects?
So sorry he is not doing good , but do not blame yourself and don't be depressed. At least he is loved and in the clean water which is more that he would get in the store. And it not because you doing something wrong we all have sick bettas and go through that , even most experienced people has sick bettas. Any pet can get sick no matter how right/good care you give them.
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Old 09-11-2013, 02:10 PM   #23 
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sorry he is not doing good:( I didn't know he stopped eating. Does he eats anything? How about those flakes that he ate before? And he still refusing frozen food?
Is his tail the same or worse?
Are you still able to maintain the temperature in his tank?
You saying that he is darts around. Is it recently that he does it? Do you see anything new on his body, like white dots? Is it looks like he is scratching on objects?
So sorry he is not doing good , but do not blame yourself and don't be depressed. At least he is loved and in the clean water which is more that he would get in the store. And it not because you doing something wrong we all have sick bettas and go through that , even most experienced people has sick bettas. Any pet can get sick no matter how right/good care you give them.
As of this morning he was refusing all food. Once in awhile he might take a flake and spit it back out (and I do crumble them into tiny pieces), but now he doesn't even look at them when I put them in the tank. His tail and dorsal fin actually look the same (no worse than they were before). There is no black discoloration on them at all. It's his pelvic fins that I'm worried about and I think at this point he may have early stages of body rot. His pelvics are receding back to his body rather quickly now.
I am maintaining the temp. in the 2-gal bowl he is in. He is at a steady 76-78 right now.
The darting behavior is random. He doesn't do it a lot, but occasionally. He also looks "normal" to me sometimes, but only for a short period of time. Last night he was just laying on the bottom and he didn't even move when I nudged him with the edge of the net. It makes me so sad. I know it's not my fault, but I hate seeing him like this. I'm going to change his water tonight when I go home, but I fear it won't make any difference.

I wish I knew what happened to him when I was away on Labor Day weekend, because that's when this all started...
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Old 09-12-2013, 01:01 PM   #24 
ANHEL123
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I would treat him with medications if he is that lethargic. The problem is that i completely forgot that Maracyns drug does not working at high ph though. Is there any way you can go to the store and exchange it ? You can find may be one of the one LBF recommended in her post 14? So sorry it just came to my mind about ph
While you don't treat him with med's continue aq salt and i would increase it to 3tsp/gall. And he definitely needs medications.
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Old 09-12-2013, 02:58 PM   #25 
peeptoad
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Originally Posted by ANHEL123 View Post
I would treat him with medications if he is that lethargic. The problem is that i completely forgot that Maracyns drug does not working at high ph though. Is there any way you can go to the store and exchange it ? You can find may be one of the one LBF recommended in her post 14? So sorry it just came to my mind about ph
While you don't treat him with med's continue aq salt and i would increase it to 3tsp/gall. And he definitely needs medications.
The pH of the water is actually lower now that I diluted with distilled water. It is in the 7-7.5 range. Do you think that would work? If not I will try to exchange it and I will look into the other med.
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Old 09-12-2013, 03:32 PM   #26 
ANHEL123
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I will try to exchange it.Because it said that it not going to work in the pH above i think 7.2.
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Old 09-13-2013, 11:57 AM   #27 
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peeptoad how its going , i am really worry;(
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Old 09-13-2013, 12:20 PM   #28 
ANHEL123
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If he still with you get Triple sulfa , or API Furan ,Jungle Fungus Clear.
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Old 09-13-2013, 10:14 PM   #29 
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How its going?
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Old 09-14-2013, 12:22 PM   #30 
peeptoad
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Sorry i have been busy last couple days. Posting this from my phone actually. I managed to get the ph of Jedi's water down slightly by adding a bit more distilled to the mix. Last night I dosed him with the maracyn 2, and i did 100% water change this morning with second dose of m2. I have to say that his behavior after just 24 hours on the m2 has improved a lot. His fins still look terrible but he is much more active and ate most of his breakfast today. Going to continue with m2 for 5 days like is says to, with 100% water change each time. Keeping my fingers crossed because he is not out of the woods yet. At least i have good news to report though! Thank you for all your help- i will update when he is done with meds. Still just hoping for the best... :)
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