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Old 08-19-2011, 07:15 AM   #1 
Mitchalene
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Red face Fish died :-(

Hi there

I hope you guys can help. I bought my son a fish tank last week Sunday. The pet store advised that we could put goldfish together with the chinese fighter but only 1 chinese fighter because they fight. So off we went home with everything in hand for the fish tank. Got home, ran the stones and rock features through boiling water, addedd the water with the neutralizing agents and as the instructions said we could put the fish in immediately which we did. The goldfish have thrived, loving the tank and eat healthy but since we put the chinese fighter, Mr Severis Snape into the tank, he wouldnt eat. I researched and my searches said that they only eat once a day and can sometimes skip a day. Today is the 5th day we have had the tank and he died. I noticed yesterday that he started bobbing sideways slowly and then would swim a tiny bit here and there but mainly rested himself against something. His fins also were fine but yesterday they just dropped and now poor Mr Severis has died.

Can anybody help me out with what possible could have gone wrong?
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Old 08-19-2011, 07:54 AM   #2 
Tikibirds
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Number 1 rule, do not listen to people in pet stores! Especially if it is petco or petsmart. Their employees tend to give the wrong info.

Bettas and goldfish are not good tankmates. Bettas are tropical and NEED a heater. Goldfish like colder water. Supposedly one is supposed to have 10 gallons of water for every goldfish. However, my sister has 4 in a 10 gallon..she also only changes the water "when it gets dirty"...(yes we have had arguments over this every time I go home to visit). ANyways....

It is possible the fish was sick when you brought it home.

How big is the tank?

What did you try and feed it? I usually feed 2-4 pellets a day depending on the size of the fish. They can go several days without eating. I usually skip their feeding on sundays.

when you say neturalizing agents do you mean water conditioner?

I'm thinking maybe the ammonia level was too high and he died from ammonia poisining??
But i'm also thinking that if the ammonia level was that high it would have an impact on the goldfish as well.

Last edited by Tikibirds; 08-19-2011 at 07:59 AM.
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Old 08-19-2011, 07:55 AM   #3 
Leeniex
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I would never put goldfish with betta's. Betta's need warm water, goldfish don't. Sadly pet stores don't seem to know this.

Mine didn't eat for almost a week either. Your guy might have been sick to begin with.
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Old 08-19-2011, 08:09 AM   #4 
BetterBetta
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It could've been temperature shock for him, not acclimating him and the cold water, since they told you to put them in right away. However, the gold fish was fine, because thatts the temperature they prefer
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Old 08-19-2011, 08:23 AM   #5 
Myates
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I'm sorry for your loss :(
Sounds to me as if it was a mix of the excess ammonia, cold water, plus the stress they already have when moving to a new home. As for not eating, they can sometimes take up to two weeks to eat after you get them, due to the shock/stress of a new home and coming from a little cup. Why it's best they have their own home or a divided tank.
Bettas and goldfish has vastly differences in needs. Bettas don't need the airflow from the filter, and different temps, food, decor, water changes and so on. Sadly a lot of the people in pet stores are just there for a paycheck, and to sell. Betta needs his own 1gal+ heated tank with caves and long plants to be happy as well as no flowing water to a sponge covered filter to reduce the movement.
Poor little guy, sorry you got such wrong info :(

Last edited by Myates; 08-19-2011 at 08:30 AM.
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Old 08-19-2011, 01:59 PM   #6 
Neil D
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Goldfish need 20+ gallons for one fancy, 50+ for one comet. Need heavy filtration, cold water.

Bettas need 3+ gallons, little to no filtration (depending on tank size), a heater.

The huge differences and the fact there was no heater probably have killed your betta.

We need to know:

Tank size?
How many goldfish?
Was there a filter and heater?

The petstore people know zip about fish care, they want your $$. So good job registering here. Hope we can help more, but please tell us the answers to those questions...
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Old 08-19-2011, 02:24 PM   #7 
bahamut285
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Hello Mitchalene, Welcome to the forum. I'm sorry to hear about Severus.

Bettas are generally solitary fish and must be kept alone, and under special and experienced circumstances, a sorority (a bunch of females) can be kept together. For now I advise two options:

1. If you want to keep the goldfish and get another betta, the Goldfish must be in a 20+ Gallon tank and the betta needs his/her own 2.5+Gallon

2. If you want just a betta: Return the goldfish and keep your current tank

3. If you want just the goldfish: Check to see if your tank can fit them all. It is 20+Gallons for the first goldfish and an additional 10 Gallons per additional goldfish.


Severus probably passed away due to ammonia poisoning that the goldfish are notorious for producing insane amounts of. Another reason could have been the temperature; as people have said, Betta's are tropical fish (78-80F or around 26C) and goldfish are COLD water fish (68-72F or around 21C).

Don't feel too badly about what happened, mistakes happen all the time, I hope to see you around on the forum :)
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Old 08-19-2011, 02:47 PM   #8 
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I am very sorry to hear about the loss.

First off welcome to the forums, we can provide you with all the info you need.

I would like to let you know I went through this twice in one week myself. I personally did everything correctly, and they still died. Mine had symptoms close to yours and died within hours of showing them. Sometimes petshops get in a sick shipment and we don't spot it till it is too late. I am actually going by my petshop today to request credit or a refund for what has happened to me.

What I suggest you do, is get the tank betta ready, heater, filter if you want it, sanitize and clean EVERYTHING. Get the tank fully set up. First call the petshop and tell them what happened, they will most likely give you a replacement fish. I know it is not a replacement for the one you lost, but it still helps some.
Make sure they don't need a water sample or even the body. I know it is hard, but they may need it.
Others here have been telling you proper procedure so i wont repeat it again. Feels free to talk to us and ask for help. We will happily give it.
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Old 08-19-2011, 03:37 PM   #9 
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I do not think the problem was ammonia poisoning for the reason that the tank was only going on for 5 days. Assuming thats its above 2 gallons and its filtered i think it would take more time for the betta to die, unless of course it was previously weakened.
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Old 08-19-2011, 05:20 PM   #10 
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@Aven: Normally, yes you would be correct if the betta were living alone. However Goldfish produce ammonia like smokestacks produce smoke. On top of that, they are also poop machines as well.

Killing tankmates within 5 days is no problem for a goldfish tank under 20 gallons (Assuming).

My assumption of the small tank size was purely due to the fact that the OP is a new fish owner and was ill-advised by the LPS/LFS people, and probably purchased a small tank as well. It's not very common for a beginner to purchase an enormous tank, due to the misconception that it would be a lot of work.
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