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Old 06-15-2011, 09:47 PM   #1 
flowerslegacy
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Parasite?? AAHHH!

Hello Everyone,

I recently posted a thread under "Betta Breeding" wondering if my brand new female was carrying eggs. Her ovipositer was really obvious and she wasn't eating. I'm on day 7 of owning her and she still hasn't eaten. I've tried everything from pellets to bloodworms. I've attached three pics because I have no idea what's happening now. You'll see in one pic that it looks like a parasite hanging from her. However, she hasn't eaten in 7 days so perhaps her poo is just white and creamy?? I've learned that white and creamy poo can also be a result of eggs, etc. But it's really long and actually curled on the end. The other issue are these little white dots I noticed on the bottom of the bowl. Could it be eggs?? (Please excuse my bad photo). I clean up all the food she doesn't eat so there is no reason for there to be anything on the bottom of the bowl. Third is this white lining between her anal fin and her tail fin. It's not actually a patch or spots, it's like a clean white line that outlines her anal and tail fin in that small section you see in the pic. Obviously she's new to me, but I swear that white stuff is new. Two nights ago she was on the bottom of the bowl, not moving, with her head completely down. I thought she was dead. She wouldn't react to me so I put my hand in the bowl. Before I actually touched her she moved. She swam a little circle around the bowl and went right back to the same place and put her head down again. Here's some info on her current living conditions:

2.5 gal bowl (temporary while 10 gal cycles)
Water change done 6/13/11
Temp: 80
Water Parameters: unknown. Waiting on new Master Water kit via USPS, however I know that my ph is 6.5. I use water conditioner when doing partial changes.
Food: tried pellets, blood worms and brine shrimp
Thanks!
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Old 06-16-2011, 12:20 AM   #2 
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It's been about 2 1/2 hours and the wormy thing is still there. Whitish clear and thin. I would assume if it were poop it would've fallen off by now?
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:50 AM   #3 
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Hi flowerslegacy. Yup, that does look suspiciously like parasites. If your girl was in breeding condition and getting eggy, she would probably have a white belly where her ovipositor is. She'd also be a little fatter than that. Plus, you haven't had her for long and unless she saw a male in the last seven days, she's unlikely to be in breeding condition. Did you buy her at a pet store? If so, there's a good chance she's got a few parasites.

IF she did see a male in the last seven days, then it's possible she did get eggy and what you're seeing are the eggs being released. When a female doesn't spawn after getting eggy, she either releases the eggs (and usually eats them) or reabsorbs them. I have no experience with breeding females so I can't say if there's a chance an egg would get stuck to a long thread like that.

You can wait and see if someone posts with some more advice/experience. I'll also ask a friend who breeds them, too. Or, if you feel confident they're parasites, I'd suggest a medicated pellet food. I think Jungle Labs has one. These are good for flushing out internal parasites.

Is she pooing? Usually when they get poo stuck to them, you can tell it's poo because it's well, the color of poo.

The white line between her anal and caudal fins is probably natural. But if it spreads or if her fins start to deteriorate then there may be something else going on. Post if that happens.

Hopefully the thing has fallen off by now, it's almost 1 AM here . . . hang in there.
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:54 AM   #4 
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Whoops, sorry. The food. Well, since you've only had her for seven days, it's possible she's still settling in. Although, to be honest, she looks pretty relaxed. I've had a new girl for about two weeks and she just finally lost her stress stripes. Still, it can take quite a while for them to regain an appetite and bettas are also notorious for being finicky. Also, she's kind of tiny so her mouth might just be too small for most foods. Try crushing her pellets up so they're smaller pieces. Ditto for the bloodworms and brine shrimp. I found with one of my new girls that if I pretend that I'm not watching her, she'll sneak to the surface to eat. But if I hover over the tank anxiously waiting for her to take a bite, she stays on the bottom.
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Old 06-16-2011, 11:31 AM   #5 
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Hi Sakura, Thank you for responding!! Yes, the stringing thing is still there and it's been about 14 hours now. I've never seen her poo since I purchased her nor have I seen any in the water. This was the first "poo" I've seen and I was excited until it ended up being whitish and overly thin. You're correct, I purchased her at a petstore. In regards to a male, the only visual she could've had would've been at the petstore, so I'm not sure. You're also correct in regards to her size, she's small. I've even attempted fry food and she *may* have nibbled a little, but I can't be sure. I'll use your advice and try crushing up a pellet. I'll also go buy some Jungle pellets. With any luck I can get her to eat them! Please let me know what your friend says in regards to breeding. I still don't know what those obvious white dots were all over the bottom of her bowl. Thanks again!!
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Old 06-16-2011, 11:39 AM   #6 
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Sure thing. I PMed my friend so I'm waiting on a response. I'm debating whether or not you should leave that string thing there or try and pick it off with tweezers. :( If she hasn't seen a male, plus she's tiny, I'm just not sure if she'd get eggy so soon after coming to a new home. Offhand, I'm thinking parasites.

She sure is a cute little thing. I hope she eats but if she has parasites, she may have no appetite, either. Hang in there, I'll post as soon as I get a response.
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Old 06-16-2011, 03:24 PM   #7 
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I *totally* appreciate all your effort to help me out! I checked her again and even used a flashlight to really look at the stringy thing. It looks like it's coming out of her ovipositer and doesn't look alive. I'm assuming the anus and ovipositer are located in two different places? Also, while trying to take her fry food off the top of bowl water, she actually ate a little piece! Woo! Hoo! Although it was only one small bite, it was better than nothing. I can't wait to hear back from you to see what your friend has to say. Thanks again!
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Old 06-16-2011, 08:59 PM   #8 
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Still no reply, (s)he may be out of town. :( But just from googling and reading through fish books, I think it's most likely a parasite. The ovipositor (also called the vent just to confuse us) and the anus are really close together so I think it's a parasitic poo from the anus. If you want, you can go ahead and see if she'll eat the Jungle Labs medicated pellets. Or if you think the pellets are too big, you can either crush them up - although I don't know what that does to the medicine's effectiveness - or look for a med that you put in the tank, like Jungle Labs Parasite Clear or something similar. If you have a filter in the 2.5g, take out the carbon first. Also, some meds will kill all the bacteria in the filter so if you go with a med you put in the tank, you might want to put her in a small barebottom hospital tank for treatment. Change the water every day too because clean water will limit the possibility of infection.
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Old 06-16-2011, 11:53 PM   #9 
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Thanks Sakura!!!

The stringy thing is still there and now it's longer. The good news is that she's swimming around a lot more and actually acknowledging our presence. I went to my local aquarium and the owner had the Jungle Pellets. However, she's still not eating. The owner gave me some live worms to see if that would entice her and told me to email him the pics and to come back tomorrow if she still isn't eating. I'll keep you posted!!!! Thank you thank you thank you again!
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Old 06-17-2011, 01:34 AM   #10 
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I'm glad I could help, although it was just a little. You're also really lucky to have a good LFS that you can go to where they are willing to help you. All of the LFS around me are lousy. Good luck!
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