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Old 05-30-2011, 01:12 AM   #1 
HestonFan23
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Betta Fish acting odd

What size is your tank? 2.5 gallons
What temperature is your tank? 78-79 degrees
Does your tank have a filter? Yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Is your tank heated? Yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? BettaMin tropical medley
How often do you feed your betta fish? in the morning and at night

Maintenance

How often do you perform a water change? 25% every other day
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 25%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Tetra water purifier/distiller

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia: Not sure
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? His fins are droopy and look scraggly.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He was extremely active until I tried to introduce another fish and a snail.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Shortly after adding the tank mates.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No
How old is your fish (approximately)? Not sure

I have to admit that I made a big mistake. A PetSmart employee told me it was okay to add fish with my betta. She told me to add a tetra every week until there were three. I had read some things online advising not to do that. But I was talking to someone I wanted to trust...and I was excited to let Steve have a few friends.

Steve used to be very active. He swam all over the tank and explored. He never even bothered with his little terracotta pot cave I made for him (I broke off the edges and then sanded them down with a file). After I added the first tetra and a snail Steve started to sulk. He became less and less active. A few hours later I decided to take them out. Now Steve is hardly eating and he hides in his little fish cave. He does not come up for air. When he does swim his tail droops.

Is my Betta sick or upset or stressed out? I have been doing 50% water changes every other day. I really do not want to lose Steve, but I realized I made some very big beginner mistakes. Thanks for any help, cheers.
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Old 05-30-2011, 11:33 AM   #2 
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Welcome to the forum.....a least you figured out that your tank was not big enough for more fish and removed them.....we all make mistakes......

Good that you are making 50% water changes...one thing that sticks out to me is your source water....can you tell me more about it......why are you not using your tap water......some water that is too pure can be bad for fish......

Can you post a pic....
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Old 05-31-2011, 03:27 PM   #3 
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I am using tap water treated with at betta water supplement by Tetra (I do not have the name of it b.c i am at Starbucks).

For the water:
I know it is hard water. I took it to Petsmart after letting the tank filter for twenty four hours. The guy told me it had ammonia in the water. The problem is that he thought I had been running it for two weeks. I keep getting mixed information from Petsmart. I try to take their advice with a grain of salt. I transferred the tetra and the snail to another smaller tank before i took them back to PetSmart. The water was unfiltered and they were fine.

Steve is still alive. He goes into his cave and sleeps. Then he comes out and floats around. He is starting to get back his turquoise sheen His fins look less scraggly too. The only issue is he is not eating and he is not as active as he used to be. He used to eat every time i fed him. I have not seen him eat in over two days. Steve likes to pick food off the bottom. He may be doing that.

As far as i can tell his tank, water, and food all match up with what these forums say to do. My guess is that he is depressed or mad at me.
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Old 05-31-2011, 03:27 PM   #4 
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I will get a picture of Steve up as soon as I can.
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Old 05-31-2011, 03:39 PM   #5 
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You will need to do a 100% change if there is ammonia. There r some things that make the water "softer" like almond leaf extract.
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Old 05-31-2011, 03:48 PM   #6 
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In a 2.5gal filtered tank-I would make twice weekly water changes...1-50% water only and 1-50% to include substrate vacuum or stir and dip method to maintain water quality...

The filter media needs a swish/rinse in old tank water with a water change a couple of times a month.....

With that said.....right now-I would start making 50% water only changes for 2 days to get the water cleaned up.....and see if this will perk him up and get him eating again

Make sure the water temp is within a couple of degrees between new and old water to prevent temp shock and Always use dechlorinator with any new water added to the tank.....

Some times, not always...the filter itself and the volume can be a short-term problem....often the Betta hasn't been in this much space with water movement since fry-hood so-to-speak and it take time for them to adjust and build strength and then with the added stress of improper tank mates with water quality issues can really stress them affecting the immune response and then you have water movement that can be hard on delicate fins...some Bettas are more sensitive than other.....

The high ammonia was most likely due to the overstocking and poor stocking that has since been fixed, however, next time you take your water in to be tested-take some of your source water too without any dechlorinator added along with the tank water...be sure an get them to give you numbers and write them down to post and let the tap water sit for 24h to degas pH so we can get accurate pH reading...if they also offer KH/GH get that too so you can find out how hard the water really is.........

Plus, Bettas will adjust to hard water and it is best to let them and not try to change the pH and hardness with chemicals...those sudden changes can be deadly....I have really hard water with a high pH to boot and have never had any issues with keeping/breeding/fry rearing this species......

Look forward to the pic...this will help.....
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Old 05-31-2011, 03:59 PM   #7 
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I treat my water in a gallon jug and let it sit over night. I have also used a turkey baster and did a DEEP cleaning off all the junk in the tank. It was pretty gross. I will try to work on getting those numbers for the forums. Thanks for all the help so far =D
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:41 PM   #8 
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Here are two photos of Steve. He tends to just float in this spot and stare at me.
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Old 05-31-2011, 06:55 PM   #9 
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next time you take your water in to be tested-take some of your source water too without any dechlorinator added along with the tank water...be sure an get them to give you numbers and write them down to post and let the tap water sit for 24h to degas pH so we can get accurate pH reading...if they also offer KH/GH get that too so you can find out how hard the water really is.........


Okay. I have the numbers from when I first had the tank water tested.
Ammonia 1.0
Nitrite 0
Nitrate 0
pH 7.2
Alkalinity 80
Chlorine and Chloramine 0

I have since changed the water several times and most of the changes were 50%.
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Old 05-31-2011, 09:02 PM   #10 
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I'm not sure, but I think Ammonia 1.0 is suposed to be fatal. If thats what it's reading do a 100% change asap.
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