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Old 06-22-2011, 02:06 PM   #1 
HarlequinBBRM
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Question Stressful Water Changes

So I did my first water change for my 5g housing my rosetail Sebastion. As soon as I placed the cup in the water to catch him and some water, he immediately freaked out and gained the most pronounced stress stripes I had ever seen on a fish. He literally turned from black to a light brown with black stripes. I didn't remove him from the water at all, just straight from his tank to the cup in the water. The whole time I was cleaning the tank, he was spazing in the cup. Once I finished his tank and put him back in the water, all of the stripes when away immediately and started to swim around like the herp a derp he always is. I know he isn't afraid of my hands being in the tank, cause I fiddled around with his heater after I put him back and all he did was watch me.

So what I want to know is there a less stressful way for me to remove him from the tank to clean it? Like covering the cup he is in with a cloth or something?

Keeping him in the tank while I clean isn't really an option as he is so silly he would get sucked up by the syphon.
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Old 06-22-2011, 06:32 PM   #2 
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hmm, i wonder if there could be a way you could "isolate" him in the tank while the water change is being done.

that or maybe this is just his first one and he will get used to them.
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Old 06-22-2011, 07:08 PM   #3 
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My tank is a funny shape (hexagon) so isolating would be very difficult. Next time I might just cover the jar he is in with a cloth or something so he will be in a dark quite place. Hopefully he will get used to the water changes. It is just silly that I'm doing something to make his life better and he goes and gets super stressed about it.
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Old 06-22-2011, 07:08 PM   #4 
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Water changes freak my fish out too. I use a net to move them from to a small 1/2 gallon so they have room to move while their main tanks are cleaned. I can tell they hate going through the air, but once they land, they reorient themselves and glare at me for moving them. Once they are done shunning me, they swim around a bit. Maybe a cup is too small and makes him feel trapped? As much as I hate the tiny made-for-betta tanks, they do give bettas a little room to move around while I'm elbow deep in their permanent tanks.
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Old 06-22-2011, 07:21 PM   #5 
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I have a 0.5g, but the floating to aclimatize him to the water would not be possible. And I think it would be more stressful to moving from a large tank, to a small tank, then to a cup/jar to float him in the large tank. And he is so tiny that he can actually swim fairly well in the plastic jar/cup I used.
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Old 06-22-2011, 07:34 PM   #6 
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I have one girl who had the same reaction to water changes: turned pale, got black stress stripes. So, perhaps a bit counter intuitively, I began taking her out every day. I would feed her in her cup, and then let her sit for a few minutes, and then let her back into the tank. After about a week, she was no longer stressed during water changes, and actually races to get into the cup the instant I put it into the tank. I've found that bettas are very motivated by food. :D Perhaps this might work for you.
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:38 PM   #7 
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betta fishes are funny, when i clean jaws tank i literally put him a coffee cup with like 2/4 water if that, he just swims around in a circle, slowly looks up every once in a while with the "Are u done" face

could never really imagine him stressed by it


maybe you need a bigger place a 1g perhaps to put him during water changes
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:56 PM   #8 
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Maybe all Sebastion needs is daily conditioning like what crazykat did... I will see if he acts the same when I do another water change this week. He is totally unflappable with everything else, including a stare-down with one of my cats. He is just another addition to our oddball family I guess.

(I always seem to atract those types of animals it seems )
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:27 PM   #9 
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Are you doing 100% water changes in your 5G? I have a 5G, but it is cycled so I only have to do partial changes. I leave my fish in the tank and just take a bit of extra time to clean the tank. I siphon on the side he isn't on and stop as I need to. He takes no notice of it and usually goes to sit on the other side.
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Old 06-22-2011, 10:02 PM   #10 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crazykat View Post
I have one girl who had the same reaction to water changes: turned pale, got black stress stripes. So, perhaps a bit counter intuitively, I began taking her out every day. I would feed her in her cup, and then let her sit for a few minutes, and then let her back into the tank. After about a week, she was no longer stressed during water changes, and actually races to get into the cup the instant I put it into the tank. I've found that bettas are very motivated by food. :D Perhaps this might work for you.
i should try that also. mine is ok with the water changes for the most part, no colour changes that i know of. i put him in a clear glass cup and he doesnt like it to start but has an uneasy peace with occasional jumping attempts, the plastic lid for my 1gal keeps him from leaving the cup. he's not too eager to get in the cup to start with and coaxing him with a toothpick didnt work today. i'll try to feed him in the cup next wc.
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