Hello all. I am a new betta owner. I have a red veiltail male, I bought him a little over three weeks ago. His name is Mongkut... yes, as in the King of Siam in 'The King and I.'
I purchased a very nifty 1.8 gallon bowl with a built-in filter and light at WalMart. He has adjusted to the water fine, I use a conditioner, all that. Today, he developed a problem, and I'm totally at a loss.
His Majesty did not look well for about 24 hours. An ammonia test came up 'ideal.' Ph levels are all fine. He is fed (though he's a snob on that point too- he will not eat his betta pellets, only bloodworms). Temperature is within the required range. Despite all this, he had been listlessly sitting at the bottom of the tank, and more than once I thought he was dead. In desperation I moved him across the room to the vacant 16-gallon tank. The water conditions there are all the same. Then I left for several hours.
When I came back I found him swimming energetically, the picture of health, and merrily attempting to intimidate the statuary. Assuming he had recovered, I returned him to his bowl. He became depressed again almost immediately. I removed some of the plants and gravel to give him extra room, but to no avail.
Now according to my research, 1.8 gallons should be fine for a betta, and 16 is just excessive. Would somebody PLEASE give me some advice as to what to do with His Majesty? I want to put goldfish in that 16-gallon, and I can't do that if he's occupying it and being a diva.