Hey all. Some of you may remember me, some of you may not. I make sporadic appearances on this site. Anyway, I've returned once more and I'm in need of some help.
I have a ten gallon sorority tank right now and it WAS housing 8 betta females. Some of you may call it overstocked but it wasn't and there was no outrageous amount of aggression, just what would be considered normal amongst sorority sisters. A few days ago, I noticed I hadn't seen much of one of my girls, a big chocolate female named Hershey. I saw her hiding a lot in one particular group of plants, so I figured there was maybe a hierarchy change (she had always been near the bottom... very submissive) and she was avoiding the violence. But she hasn't been up to eat in two days now and I haven't seen any sign of her, not even the flash of a fin in the plants. I... am pretty sure she's dead, in which case the other fish probably ate her, right? I have combed the tank looking for her... not a single sign of her.
So beyond the missing Hershey, I'm now having a problem with my dominant red female, Kitkat. I came home from work today to find her lying on her side on the bottom, and no amount of tapping would get her to move. Just when I was convinced she was dead, suddenly she got up and swam to the little house in the tank and perched herself awkwardly on the roof. She isn't acting well... very lethargic, although oddly enough, her color is still vibrant, not pale like it is when she is stressed. I scooped her up and put her in a breeder's box in the tank, where she is mostly lying on the bottom. Oddly, she doesn't appear to have been attacked at all. Her fins are still perfect, no visible injuries, and I watched her eat last night. But something about this lethargy scares me... she didn't even fuss when I caught her in the net.
What's going on in my sorority? I'm afraid I've already lost Hershey, I don't want to lose Kitkat, too!
What size is your tank? 10g
What temperature is your tank? 80
Does your tank have a filter? yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? 7 other females bettas (potentially 6 now)
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Alternately Omega One pellets and NLS pellets. Supplemented with frozen bloodworms as treats.
How often do you feed your betta fish? Every day, fast Fridays.
How often do you perform a water change? 1x per week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 30-50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Stress Coat or Prime depending on if there are any nipped fins. Lately, Stress Coat because I want to use it up.
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?
Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Not much. Maybe faint stress lines. Otherwise she looks healthy.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Extremely lethargic, laying on the bottom of the tank or whatever is closest. Also, she seems to have lost her dominant position in the tank.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Today
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No, she is just separated by a breeder's box for the time being.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? None.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Probably no more than 8 months old. She was very young when I got her and her siblings.