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Old 08-02-2010, 07:47 PM   #1 
Srrme
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Help!

We bought a male Betta almost a year ago, and until a few days ago he's been a very active fish.

He usually comes up to the front of the tank when he's hungry, and will swim back and forth until you feed him, but he hasn't been very hungry lately, and has only eaten a few pellets (normally he would eat all day if you let him).

He has also been floating on his side for the past 2 or 3 days. I thought he was dead at first, but he ends up moving and swimming a bit if you lift the top off of his tank. He also randomly freaks out and zooms about the tank every now and then, but always goes back to floating on his side.

(We clean his tank regularly, and keep it at a decent temperature. He's in a 2 gallon tank.)

What could this be? Is he dying?

Last edited by Srrme; 08-02-2010 at 07:54 PM.
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Old 08-02-2010, 10:42 PM   #2 
Kittles
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Does your fish have white spots on its body or fins? Usually, fish with ich will rub themselves on the decor in the tank, or the tank itself, in an effort to slough off the parasites.

Should that not be the case, you'll have to provide more specific information about your tank and cleaning habits. Do you have a water test kit, and are able to test your water parameters? What is your exact water temperature? How often do you clean the tank, and how much water do you change at a time? Is your tank cycled? Etc.
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Old 08-02-2010, 11:13 PM   #3 
Adastra
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Your post is a bit vague--could you please clarify and describe exactly what you mean when you say "regularly" and a "decent temperature"? What have you been feeding him and how often? Do you presoak dried foods before feeding?

My first impression of what you're describing is that the fish is constipated. In bettas, constipation leads to bloating which puts pressure on the swim bladder--this is the organ that controls the fish's depth in the water. Injury or pressure on this organ can cause the fish to sink or float in an uncontrolled manner.

Several things can cause constipation and some fish are more prone to it than others. For now, I would stop feeding the fish completely until the bloating goes down, or you see feces. If there is feces present, take note of what it looks like. White, stringy, or otherwise abnormal poop is a symptom of internal parasites that can also cause bloating and lethargy. If possible, raise the temperature to between 80-83 degrees--this will help boost his metabolism and rate of digestion to get things moving more quickly. Because fish are cold-blooded animals, their entire metabolism is driven by temperature--at lower temperatures digestion is slower and much more difficult. This is why it is important that the tank remain a steady 78-83 degrees at all times.

It would also help to put something for him to hide under near the surface of the water--this will make him feel less vulnerable and stressed. If you don't have any floating plants, you could cut the middle out of a paper plate or styrofoam cup.

Don't worry, usually once the bloating goes down the swim bladder problem clears up in a few days.

Last edited by Adastra; 08-02-2010 at 11:20 PM.
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Old 08-03-2010, 12:11 AM   #4 
Kittles
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I don't know why I started talking about ich in my previous post. I was clearly confused about which post I was replying to at the time.

Adastra pretty well summed up my now-gathered thoughts. Constipation is a common problem that shares a lot of the symptoms you've described. As well, and as mentioned prior, it can effect the buoyancy of your betta causing your fish to appear afflicted with swim bladder disease. I shant repeat what's been said already any longer.
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Old 08-03-2010, 05:42 PM   #5 
Srrme
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Thank you guys for the information. Sadly he passed away last night.
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Old 08-03-2010, 09:46 PM   #6 
Kittles
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I am sorry to hear this. Perhaps he was just getting old, as you mentioned?
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