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Old 04-05-2010, 08:04 PM   #1 
LibraryFish
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Little tummy bloat

Hey everyone-
I got my betta last week on Tuesday. He seems to like his new home. I noticed him being a little lethargic last Thursday - kinda hanging around the bottom of the tank, or swimming for a bit and then sitting in a plant. I left him for three days (he's at work and I work 4 days/week), and came back and gave him his usual diet of pellets. I noticed then that his little tummy seems to be getting kind of swollen. Here are some pics (click to make bigger):





Since he was fasted for three days, do you think my feeding him this morning (3 pellets) could have caused constipation? Perhaps he got this way over the weekend and I didn't notice. I'm open to anyone's interpretation. He's in a 5 gallon filtered tank, heated to 78 degrees.

Thanks for your help!
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Old 04-05-2010, 08:53 PM   #2 
Oldfishlady
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Is the tank cycled, does it have a filter, how much and how often on the water changes and when was the last one, what kind if any additives used, like dechlorinater, salt...etc.....
What kind of food are you feeding?
Do you have any water prams numbers for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH
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Old 04-05-2010, 09:09 PM   #3 
DarthMaul
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it is filtered
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Old 04-05-2010, 09:45 PM   #4 
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(Darn it, my internet died and post was gone).

Anyways, OldFishLady has is started for ya.
How much do you feed at a meal, and how many total a day? If you want to, try experimentating and feeding less at a time. Maybe if you feed 5 total a day, try feeding one every 1-2 hours ? (Again, this is pure experimentation and I haven't done it myself).

Do you presoak your pellets? I would highly recommend you do. 30seconds should be good (you don't necessarily have to count, haha). I presoak every pellet, every day. I have not seen constipation in months.

Also, over the weekend, do they do anything? Is the power shut off? Or is everything left up and running? (You may want to invest in a timer for the lighting).
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Old 04-06-2010, 10:43 AM   #5 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oldfishlady View Post
Is the tank cycled
Not yet. I set it up almost two weeks ago and let it sit for a few days before getting the fish, but I didn't add anything but the little guy last week.

Quote:
does it have a filter
Yes, the one that came with the Aqueon Minibow 5 gallon I bought. I was concerned about the water movement, but he seems to think it's fine.

Quote:
how much and how often on the water changes and when was the last one
25-50% water changes once a week, last one was yesterday.

Quote:
what kind if any additives used, like dechlorinater, salt...etc.....
AquaSafe and salt - about a tsp of salt per gallon or two.

Quote:
What kind of food are you feeding?
Wardley Advanced Nutrition pellets, one or two twice a day (3 yesterday, but none today or over the weekend); one or two Hikari enriched freeze-dried bloodworms once or twice/week

Quote:
Do you have any water prams numbers for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH
I have test strips that tell me my water is very hard, my pH is high (7.75-8.5) and my nitrites/trates are in safe levels, but I'll be taking a water sample to the pet store later today to get some more accurate numbers.
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Old 04-06-2010, 11:13 AM   #6 
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Long term salt can damage kidneys and cause bloating issues, it is a great product for treatments when used short term.

Since you tank is not cycled I would start making 50% daily to every other day water changes, but only vacuum the gravel 1 time a week to keep the NB intact, only rinse/swish the filter media in old tank water 1-2 times a month or when the water flow has slowed to keep the NB alive and thriving.

I would cut back on the food to half until you get the tank cycled

It can take 4-8 weeks to cycle, you know you are cycled when your water prams read....ammonia and nitrite 0ppm and nitrate 5-10ppm for several days without water changes...your pH is fine
Any reading of ammonia or nitrite of 0.25ppm or higher make a 50% water change
Keep the nitrate in the 5-10ppm range....high nitrates can affect the immune response.
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Old 04-06-2010, 12:50 PM   #7 
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Thank you! Do you recommend I stop adding salt altogether? I've read it's a great preventive measure for problems like ich and velvet.

I haven't vacuumed any gravel yet, party because I can't always get the darn siphon to work properly. But I haven't read anything about swishing the filter in the water - what is this all about?
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Old 04-06-2010, 03:05 PM   #8 
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The nitrifying bacteria needed to cycle the tank are sticky and adhere to everything in the tank....like the walls, decorations, plants both fake and real, in the top layer of the gravel and most are in the filter media. The NB need lots of oxygen to thrive and can be killed or die when the oxygen source is cut off or chlorine from water, antibiotic can kill the NB.
You swish or rinse the filter media in the bucket of tank water with a water change to get the big gunk off of it so that the water flow and oxygen can help keep the NB alive and thriving to help keep the water fish safe between water changes, your filter media will look dirty and that is okay and how you want it. You also don't need to change the filter media as often as the direction state. When I used filter media I only changed it out 1-2 times a year and only if it was falling apart....I now use pollyfill that I get in the craft department.
The carbon in most of the store bought filter are of poor quality and are only active for about 2 weeks a month at best, I always dumped the charcoal out anyway when I used filter media.
Charcoal is good to remove tannins, odors, medication, some heavy metals to name a few things it will do, however, water changes will do the same thing on some of it. Use of carbon is more of a personal choice and not a need IMO.

Yes, I would get the salt out of the tank and only use it short term for treatment, long term use can also cause resistant pathogens/parasites, so when you do have an outbreak of Ich it may not be as effective do to resistant parasites from long term and wrong dosages, just like us and antibiotic when we use them for the wrong reason or stop taking them too early.

The best preventive measure to take IMO/E, regular water changes....freshwater fish need fresh water to thrive not just survive......
Often when a fish is acting odd or off...make a water change...sometimes this is the only medication they need......
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Old 04-06-2010, 05:07 PM   #9 
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I would recommend that you get an API freshwater master test kit because the strips don't give accurate readings.
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Old 04-06-2010, 07:07 PM   #10 
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I second not using strips, and second the API Kit.
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