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Old 08-04-2010, 02:20 PM   #1 
lucky417
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Sick Betta? Help!

Hi,

I'm not quite sure if my Betta is sick, because he is acting normal, eating fine, and still very excited when he sees me. The reason I am concerned is because he has white bumps on him, mostly on his head, and his left pectoral fin is disappearing and almost gone. My tank size is a 5 gal. and he is the only fish in there.

This is the best picture I could get of him because he moves around so much so it is a little bit blurry. I have circled most of the white spots as well as the fin in the picture. Sorry the pic is so big.



Last edited by lucky417; 08-04-2010 at 02:25 PM.
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Old 08-04-2010, 02:38 PM   #2 
Adastra
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I can't see the picture, but if it looks like the fish has been sprinkled with grains of salt, then the fish has been infested with an external parasite called ich. Ich is present in its dormant state in nearly everyone's aquarium, however, it only infests fish that have been weakened by some environmental stress factor. Often, this environmental stress factor is simply poor sanitation caused by lack of appropriate water changes.

How often and how much water have you been changing? Does the fish have an adjustable heater?
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Old 08-04-2010, 02:48 PM   #3 
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The last water change I did was a little over a week ago and it was about 25% of the water. I tend to do a water change about every month. I do have a heater but it is not adjustable.
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Old 08-04-2010, 02:52 PM   #4 
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sorry the pic doesn't work. I will try again.

Last edited by lucky417; 08-04-2010 at 02:57 PM.
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:01 PM   #5 
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Here is the picture,
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:04 PM   #6 
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That Pic is HUGE! Do you have a smaller one?
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:07 PM   #7 
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I found a way to make it smaller, an I think it is external parasites.
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:21 PM   #8 
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Thanks for your info Bloo! But how about the disappearing pectoral fin? Is that also caused by the parasites?
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:24 PM   #9 
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Unfortunately 25% per month is not enough. Do you have a water test kit, and can you tell me what the ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels are? Do you know what the nitrogen cycle is, and if so, do you know if the tank is cycled?

An uncycled 5 gallon tank needs at least one 100% water change a week to keep the ammonia levels at zero. A cycled tank needs at least one 30%-50% change per week to keep the nitrate levels down to a tolerable level.

Honestly, I can't really tell if that is ich since the picture is a bit blurry--are the white spots flat, or fuzzy? If they are fuzzy, it might be bacteria infecting the fish. If it is not fuzzy it is likely ich.

If the fish has ich, the best treatment is simply clean water. I would do one 100% change a week and one 50% change a week and see if there is any change. Temperature fluctuations caused by nonadjustable heaters are also a cause of infestation--since these heaters lack thermostats the temperature of the tank changes with the ambient temperature of the room. If the room is too cold, these pre-set heaters can't compensate and are often inadequate. You may want to upgrade to an adjustable heater at some point, I use and recommend this one: http://www.fosterandsmithaquatics.co...m?pcatid=11368 Ich, velvet, and other external parasites will go away faster if the water is very warm--usually for treatment I would turn up the heater to about 83 degrees. This speeds up the life cycle of the protozoa, so they die faster.

If the fish starts getting a lot worse, you should consider a malachite/victoria green treatment. I have had some success with Jungle Ick Clear tabs.

Last edited by Adastra; 08-04-2010 at 03:28 PM.
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Old 08-04-2010, 03:47 PM   #10 
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Thanks Adastra for your help. I do not have a test kit and I am not quite sure what the nitrogen cycle is. I am on my way to the pet store soon so I will pick up a kit and a adjustable heater or order your recommended one. The spots seem to be more flat than fuzzy. So if he has ich, do a 100% water change and turn up the heater to 83 or so.

Thanks again.
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