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Old 11-01-2010, 01:01 PM   #1 
MissMoneyPenny
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Exclamation Floating betta..

Already got another Betta! However, something doesn't seem right. He was swimming around fine in his display cup and baggie, but after getting him in the tank, he is acting really strange.. He just sort of 'floats' around the top, goes down just a little, but mainly floats.. What could be wrong?
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:05 PM   #2 
1fish2fish
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What method did you use to acclimate him? What is the temperature of the tank?

If he is floating it sounds like a swim bladder issue. This could be caused by many different things from organ failure to plain bloat.. he also could be shocked by his new environment.
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:09 PM   #3 
MissMoneyPenny
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We kept his baggie in the tank for a while, then emptied some of the water to add tank water, and so on until a majority of it was tank water. The temp is around 78 degrees or so.
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Old 11-01-2010, 01:49 PM   #4 
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From what I am reading of the swimming bladder issue, it seems to be this. When attempting to swim, he goes nose down and it is like he is struggling to do so, eventually going back to the top. Would the green pea method be a good remedy for this? How should I go about doing it?
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:22 PM   #5 
Adastra
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I prefer to use frozen brine shrimp or daphnia instead of peas, since bettas are carnivores and cannot obtain nutrients from plant matter. Both will do essentially the same job since they are full of fiber, but in my experience, brine shrimp and daphnia accomplish this job better.

If you happen to have frozen peas on hand and would prefer to use those, make sure they are organic and unsalted. Do not use canned peas, since they are way too salty and typically have lots of other additives. Take one pea and wrap it in a small amount of paper towel that has been moistened with tank water. Put it in the microwave for a few seconds and then give it a little while to cool. Remove the skin of the pea so that you have two sections of "meat"--crush one of the sections until it's very mushy. The mushier the better. Take a small portion of what you've crushed up, and roll it loosely into the shape of a pellet. This pellet should generally be smaller than a normal food pellet, you don't want to give him too much of something he can't digest or get any nutrients from.

After you feed him the pea or frozen brine shrimp or daphnia, hold all food until you see the bloating go down or until you see the fish pass feces. Take note of what the feces looks like--abnormal feces can be a sign of internal parasites.

Since he is floating on the surface, he will de-stress faster if you have floating plants for him to hide in or something to hide himself under. I usually cut out the center of a paper/styrofoam plate and float it on the water, but any flat styrofoam will do. Bubblewrap will also work. Don't cover all of the water's surface, obviously, just enough for him to tuck himself under it so that he has some security.
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Old 11-01-2010, 03:47 PM   #6 
MissMoneyPenny
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adastra View Post
I prefer to use frozen brine shrimp or daphnia instead of peas, since bettas are carnivores and cannot obtain nutrients from plant matter. Both will do essentially the same job since they are full of fiber, but in my experience, brine shrimp and daphnia accomplish this job better.

If you happen to have frozen peas on hand and would prefer to use those, make sure they are organic and unsalted. Do not use canned peas, since they are way too salty and typically have lots of other additives. Take one pea and wrap it in a small amount of paper towel that has been moistened with tank water. Put it in the microwave for a few seconds and then give it a little while to cool. Remove the skin of the pea so that you have two sections of "meat"--crush one of the sections until it's very mushy. The mushier the better. Take a small portion of what you've crushed up, and roll it loosely into the shape of a pellet. This pellet should generally be smaller than a normal food pellet, you don't want to give him too much of something he can't digest or get any nutrients from.

After you feed him the pea or frozen brine shrimp or daphnia, hold all food until you see the bloating go down or until you see the fish pass feces. Take note of what the feces looks like--abnormal feces can be a sign of internal parasites.

Since he is floating on the surface, he will de-stress faster if you have floating plants for him to hide in or something to hide himself under. I usually cut out the center of a paper/styrofoam plate and float it on the water, but any flat styrofoam will do. Bubblewrap will also work. Don't cover all of the water's surface, obviously, just enough for him to tuck himself under it so that he has some security.
Thanks so much for such an in-depth response! Cobra (hubby named him, hehehe) has been swimming through the tank better. Still does 'nose diving/swimming' and floating back to the top - but is somewhat more active. Should I try fasting him for a day or so to see if it will pass OR should I go ahead with the pea or treatment you mentioned?
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Old 11-01-2010, 05:21 PM   #7 
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I have a quick question, how is daphnia fed to fish? Seems very teeny tiny when thawed.
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Old 11-01-2010, 05:25 PM   #8 
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Is he bloated? if not and he is acting okay other than the swimming problem and eating okay-it may be related to swim bladder and not constipation.......often this can be genetic(debated) and/or growth and development related-often called floaters/skimmers-it can be due to husbandry at the breeders either food or water quality related-even too cold/dry air above the water during the development of the labyrinth organ-if he was a floater-he may never be able to swim correctly or it will come and go, however, they can still live a normal life

If it is caused by inflamed/infected swim bladder or the duct is inflamed/infected you can treat the symptom with Epsom salt 1tsp/gal along with daily 100% water changes for 7-10 days and plastic veggie wrap over the top of the QT container to keep the air above the water warm and humid-usually they will recover in a couple of days but a full treatment is recommended-if he was a floater he may get better short term with treatment..... only to return
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Old 11-01-2010, 06:21 PM   #9 
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He looks somewhat bloated to me, but not too sure how that may look as he is a somewhat bigger boy. He is still floating, but for a while he was somewhat active, would swim down and didn't seem to have as much trouble. We just returned home and he was floating again.
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Old 11-01-2010, 11:00 PM   #10 
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At this point IMO you should try fasting him for 24-48 hours just to see if the bloating goes down. If you can try to get him into a bare bottomed tank so you can inspect his feces for signs of parasites (common in pet store fish). Provide a plant or something tall enough for him to lay on near the surface. If he doesn't improve then I would explore other options. I've had good success with both epsom salt and mysis shrimp as a laxative so either one would be a good option.
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