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Old 03-28-2011, 12:09 AM   #1 
conspiracyx
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Unhappy Mystery bloat?

Over the past week or two, I've noticed that my male betta has been gaining a growth on his belly. I didn't think much of it at first, but it seems to be getting worse, so I am looking for help and advice.

I have moved him about a month ago from this tank to this one. Just earlier this week I changed the water and filter in the tank. I have been feeding him this since I got him in February, 1-3 pellets twice daily. Water is kept at around 80-82F. I changed some of his water every other week and the water goes through a PUR filter before it gets to him.

I have so far stopped feeding him for a day and gave him part of a pea earlier today in hopes that he is bloated. I will try to not feed him for a few days before raising any more alarms.

Pictures can be found here: http://dima.neoturbine.net/fish/

Now answering the questions from the sticky:

Housing
What size is your tank?
3 gallons
What temperature is your tank?
80-84F, most of the time 82F
Does your tank have a filter?
Yes, bio wheel and charocoal.
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
No.
Is your tank heated?
Heater installed but not used unless it gets below 80.
What tank mates does your betta fish live with?
None

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish?
Top FinŽ Color Enhancing Betta Bits (see link above)
How often do you feed your betta fish?
Used to feed twice daily, 1-3 pellets. Stopped a day ago to see if it helps.

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change?
Old tank: every other week. New tank: only changed it once 3 weeks later.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change?
Old tank: 1/3. New tank: ended up sucking up about 1/2 while using one of those aquarium hoses for the 1st time to go through gravel.
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?
Water conditioner (some generic one from PetCo), also a sample of API Stress Coat and Stress Zyme.

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?
Have not.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
He has a bulge on the underside of his belly and it is getting bigger (see pics above).
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
Hasn't at all, still hates me, ha.
When did you start noticing the symptoms?
1-2 weeks ago.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
I gave him a pea and stopped feeding for a day so far.
Does your fish have any history of being ill?
Not that I know of.
How old is your fish (approximately)?
Unknown, obtained from pet store.
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:15 AM   #2 
KayDowson
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First of all peas are horrible for theyre digestive system... your temp shoul be a little lower around 78-80... if hes still bloated after u fast him i would try some aq salt and see if that clears it up
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Old 03-28-2011, 12:32 AM   #3 
conspiracyx
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So much for trusting the internet about those peas. I have tried to keep his temperature lower in the past, but he would just sit at the bottom of the tank all day when it was below 80.
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Old 03-28-2011, 01:19 PM   #4 
PewPewPew
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I Can tell you that your water changes are not frequent enough.. You need to do the same volume, just more frequently.
Discontinue the pea thing immediatley.
Fast him for about 3-4 days, do not feed him at all. His stomach is severely bloated... As a suggestion, remove the substrate in the tank for now to check to see if he poops. Pooping is a good sign, ha. Place a mirror near him for five or so minutes every other day, which might make him poop, too. (weird, right?)
Ill look into epsom salt treatments for you, if you would like. They help with bloating. Still fast him, however, and up the water changes.
, Btw, 84' is too high. My tank will spike to that, too, but try not to let it happen. Opt instead for, for now, 78'.
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:16 PM   #5 
conspiracyx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PewPewPew View Post
I Can tell you that your water changes are not frequent enough.. You need to do the same volume, just more frequently.
Discontinue the pea thing immediatley.
Fast him for about 3-4 days, do not feed him at all. His stomach is severely bloated... As a suggestion, remove the substrate in the tank for now to check to see if he poops. Pooping is a good sign, ha. Place a mirror near him for five or so minutes every other day, which might make him poop, too. (weird, right?)
Ill look into epsom salt treatments for you, if you would like. They help with bloating. Still fast him, however, and up the water changes.
, Btw, 84' is too high. My tank will spike to that, too, but try not to let it happen. Opt instead for, for now, 78'.
In response to all that above:
- When I moved him from one tank to another, his environment increased by two (1.6 gal to 3) and it gained that active charcoal and biowheel filtration. I assumed, as wrong as it is to assume, that I could slow down on water changes due to improvements in environment. You can probably fill me in on what rules over frequency and amount of water changes.
- Going to wait out 2-4 days to see what happens when I don't feed him. Not sure what to do past that.
- About the substrate: how do you clean that? I tried doing that suction-tube thing to go through the gravel, but I am not sure if that was doing much. Might not have been doing it right.
- He flares when I turn the overhead light on, so I can bypass the mirror thing to get him agitated that way. He can go for hours like that, if left unchecked. So dumb, hah.
- The water in my tank is roughly 81 right now and have stayed within 80-82 in the past week or two. While I have the heater installed, it's not on, so I can't make the temperature go any lower.
- Yeah, please tell me about the epsom salt thing. I hear mixed discussion about that.
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:30 PM   #6 
PewPewPew
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Ill look into it tonight for you C:

And no, while the filtration is good, it will not get rid of the ammonia* that is in the tank. However, its a great thing to have and once he's past this bloating thing, I suggest you try cycling your tank- a worthy endevor that will eventually cut down the needed changes.

In your tank, usually- as in, not while he is ill- I would be doing 50% every 2 days, with a siphoning in each one. What kind do you have? Some are fickle and downright dumb and wont work unless done in a certain way. Siphoning is so you can get the poo and food from the gravel. You do not need 100% changes in your tank since you have a filter.

Now that he is unwell, try doing 50% every other day. This will ensure his water is clean, which is one less factor in his illness to worry about.

I suggest, only really for the time being, that you remove your substrate to see if he is pooping or not. He may be constipated and seeing his poo will help in figuring out whats wrong. Also, you can see the condition his waste is in, which might tell you if he has parasites (white, stringy poo), etc. Put it temporarally in his old tank or in a bag, with the top open so it wont foul or mold.

The light way is fine, but do it for 10 minutes max each day. Every other is best, or he will stress. Males sometimes poop when they see another male (goodness knows) so it might be helpful. Its worked for others and myself in the past,and may work for you!
Please wait at least 3 days to feed him. He has been bloated since mid-feb based on your pictures and this might be getting serious. Bettas can go a VERY long time without food, so its mostly a matter of you being able to resist the begging ;) 4-5 days willl work well for you.
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Old 03-28-2011, 02:35 PM   #7 
conspiracyx
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I have this thing
http://www.biorbfishtanks.com/biorbc...iphonpump.aspx

I have tried using it by pushing the bulb on it to suck while sticking the wide end into the gravel and poking it.
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Old 03-30-2011, 08:07 PM   #8 
conspiracyx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PewPewPew View Post
Ill look into it tonight for you C:

And no, while the filtration is good, it will not get rid of the ammonia* that is in the tank. However, its a great thing to have and once he's past this bloating thing, I suggest you try cycling your tank- a worthy endevor that will eventually cut down the needed changes.

In your tank, usually- as in, not while he is ill- I would be doing 50% every 2 days, with a siphoning in each one. What kind do you have? Some are fickle and downright dumb and wont work unless done in a certain way. Siphoning is so you can get the poo and food from the gravel. You do not need 100% changes in your tank since you have a filter.

Now that he is unwell, try doing 50% every other day. This will ensure his water is clean, which is one less factor in his illness to worry about.

I suggest, only really for the time being, that you remove your substrate to see if he is pooping or not. He may be constipated and seeing his poo will help in figuring out whats wrong. Also, you can see the condition his waste is in, which might tell you if he has parasites (white, stringy poo), etc. Put it temporarally in his old tank or in a bag, with the top open so it wont foul or mold.

The light way is fine, but do it for 10 minutes max each day. Every other is best, or he will stress. Males sometimes poop when they see another male (goodness knows) so it might be helpful. Its worked for others and myself in the past,and may work for you!
Please wait at least 3 days to feed him. He has been bloated since mid-feb based on your pictures and this might be getting serious. Bettas can go a VERY long time without food, so its mostly a matter of you being able to resist the begging ;) 4-5 days willl work well for you.
So here is what has happened in the past two days:
- I moved the fish with all of his old water into his old tank. This way I could observe the bottom of the tank for poop.
- I got water test kits and frozen brine shrimp from a petstore for later.
- I cleaned and refilled the tank that the fish's current home and restarted it with enough water to keep the bio filter going.
- I tested the water where the fish is now and found all water parameters to be within acceptable EXCEPT nitrites, which were high. Thus, after waiting a day, I removed some of that nitrite-high water and added some fresh water in, roughly 25%. I repeated this with less change a day later.
- In the two days, my fish has not changed appearance nor has he appeared to have pooped. He swims fine and behaving normally. I have not fed him.

What should I do next?
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Old 03-30-2011, 08:26 PM   #9 
FlareThis
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Just wanted to add that Daphnia is a good natural laxative for bettas, much much better then those silly peas.

Is he eating? If he is you can try soaking his food in garlic juice before giving it to him (you can use garlic guard or garlic juice with no preservatives, the garlic juice will boost the immune system.

But I wouldn't feed him anything until he poops! Epsom salt would help him! 1 tablespoon/5 gallons.
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Old 03-30-2011, 08:36 PM   #10 
conspiracyx
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Just wanted to add that Daphnia is a good natural laxative for bettas, much much better then those silly peas.

Is he eating? If he is you can try soaking his food in garlic juice before giving it to him (you can use garlic guard or garlic juice with no preservatives, the garlic juice will boost the immune system.

But I wouldn't feed him anything until he poops! Epsom salt would help him! 1 tablespoon/5 gallons.
He will eat if I feed him. He will eat anything you put in front him. That's probably what got us into this mess in the first place!

Is there a place to get epsom salt quickly and cheaply?

Also, I am holding off on feeding him anything for now. What would the frozen brine shrimp I just obtained do?
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