A reboot on my journal, this time with an intention to keep the thing up and going.
I got into bettas when I was around 6 or 8-ish. I had a red/blue bicolor VT male named Rainbow. My mom had a royal blue VT who's name I don't remember. I remember loving to watch him swim around and flare up. He was kept in an unheated, unfiltered bowl and cared for by my mother. We were forced to get rid of him and my mother's when we moved as we often did when I was young due to on and off relationships with her ex-husband. I didn't get anymore fish until March of 2014. However, that didn't stop me owning pets. I owned a hamster, several dogs and cats, helped with my mom's rabbit and our iguanas, Izzy, Lizzy and Garfield and then when I was 15, acquired two male Red-Eared Sliders, Big Mac and Speedy Gonzalez who are with me to this day. After getting them, I knew I wanted snakes. Always had since I was little. Before moving out, I saved up and bought a corn snake and a red-tail boa. My cornsnake is still with me while the red-tail was relinquished due to an ongoing fight with mites I couldn't get rid of. I have since owned a Savannah Monitor which died due to a genetic defect in her jaw that kept her from eating enough to grow and thrive, a ball python that
died due to getting poisoned by aerosol, which was the fault of a cousin walking in wearing too much Axe cologne and a baby corn snake whose death I have never figured out the cause. I had fed him a couple days prior and he was eating and drinking as normal. I left for work that morning, having checked on him and refilled his water bowl. When I returned for work 4 hours later he was dead. No outer injuries. After that death I swore off reptiles. I had no luck keeping any of them except my adult corn snake. Then my journey with bettas began, 3-4 months after the death of my baby corn.
Mako was half-planned but mostly an impulse rescue. I had hovered around the betta section of my local Walmart because I've always loved fish. I looked at them whenever I was in the store. Especially the bettas. On a whim I inspected them closer and found him. He was perfect. I had never really paid attention to the crowntails until him. His colors were dull and despite some lethargy, I think from loneliness, when I picked him up he swam to me and blew some bubbles. I put him back, staring at my empty bank account and knowing I got paid in two days. I couldn't leave him.
In the two days since, his water had gotten worse and was the nasty orange brown of a neglected betta. His fins were in slight tatters and his color had dulled out more. I bought him almost immediately, scooping up everything I thought I needed and spending way more than I should have to set him up in an unheated 1.5 gallon which at the time I thought was more than enough space and was the right conditions. When I got home and broadcasted the news to a friend they quickly
corrected my error in judgement. They said they hoped the 1.5 was temporary and that I needed a heater quickly. They pointed me towards a 5 gallon tank, which I relayed to my roommate who had bought a female royal blue at the same time I got Mako.
Then I really began to do my research. I asked a friend there for help with the information I already had. She pointed me toward affordable tanks and helped me pick gravel, a filter that wouldn't harm his fins, live plants, decor, and got me all set up. That was when I found...Thanatos. He was shy and small but a gorgeous Black Devil dragonscale crowntail. I was in love. Until I found out his less than personable personality. I ended up spending over 130$ getting my boys set up and not a single regret about it.
Weeks went by with my boys getting prettier and prettier.
Weeks turned into months, and Thanatos had gotten bigger and Mako is a beast. He dwarfs my other bettas. I got Thresh and Erebus, and battled some slight ick with them both that apparently hadn't cleared up after I deemed it treated in the hospital tanks. Thanatos comes down with a particularly stubborn case but several treatments of Ick Guard. Mako's ick was more easily treated and cleared up in a few days.
I impulse rescued Natal and Red Fish, both suffering from Walmart neglect and fin rot.I got them set up in 10 gallon tanks and began to try to save them from their neglect.
Natal was doing well and had settled in nicely. "Red Fish" seemed to have perked up.
Red Fish's swimming had turned erratic and is worrying. He favors the top of the water and darts about. A small bubble nest can be seen in the corner of the tank however. Natal has built a substantial bubble nest.
Before heading to work, I noticed that Red Fish had seemed to calm but still favored the top of the water. Natal's fins have begun to grow back. Returning from work I found Red Fish dead. No clamped fins, only the erratic swimming as a sign something was amiss. Now having had experience with Natal and some SBD and bloat I can only wonder if it was something like that.
Natal is still doing great! To fill the empty tank left by Red Fish, I set out to find someone to fill that hole. I found Nereus, my goofy delta tail.
My first bout with Nereus' tail biting. He had gotten stressed due to my cat ripping the heater out of the water and the water cooling. I did a water change and he perked up for a while
...to be continued.