I bought my betta fish 10 days ago. I have him in a 1 gallon tank for now (a thank from when I had a guppy two years ago), and am planning to get a 5 gallon as soon as I get my next paycheck (I heard that the rumor that they like to live in tiny claustrophobic spaces is a myth perpetuated by pet stores/fish breeders in order to make the fish seem more accessible and sell more of them). I bought him from a very reputable store in my hometown that many fish enthusiasts trust with everything. He has some plastic plants for now (pass the panty hose test) until I get a bigger thank to get some real ones. The tank has water that was filtered through a brita filter twice, and then had declorinator/new tank stabilizer added. It has an air circulator and I have a heater for it too, set to 74* f. I have done partial water changes every three days of about 25% and I regularly scoop out food debris. I let the tank sit for 24 hours before I introduced the fish.
I have no clue what I am doing wrong. To my knowledge, he has not eaten. I have flakes, pellets, and freeze dried worms. I always end up scooping them out a few hours later. I have tried peas, too.
Yesterday he started acting very strangely. He bolted to the top of the tank with his mouth wide open and began flailing about. You ever seen a fish flailing once out of water on a hard surface? That is what it looked like he was doing, but it was in the water. It looked like he was just gasping. Then he swam to the bottom where it appeared as if he were trying to burrow into the rocks I have on the bottom of the tank. I called the pet store and they said that there might be something wrong with the water. They offered to take a water sample, but I live out of town (made a special trip up to get the fish). While I was on the phone the fish continued to alternate between the flailing up at the top, and the attempted burrowing at the bottom.
Suddenly he sank to the middle of the tank and just sat there without moving. He stayed that way all day. Now, today, he has been hanging out on the rocks and not moving at all. Still has not eaten. One in awhile he will spaz out and then float face down tail up looking at the bottom of the tank, then bend in half and lay sideways on the gravel, then slowly rotate to be laying on the bottom again.
What is going on?? I don't know what to do! I have had bettas before and they have never done this.