I have had my beautiful CT betta Anthony for about a month now. I took about a year to research betta fish and decide to adopt one, and everything was going swimmingly (pun intended). Anthony seemed to be a really happy fish, good appetite, enjoys exploring his 16g Aqueon live-planted tank which is filtered and heated . I bought him from a PetSmart location in September and he has really filled out since then. He is a real little clown; knows to come when I call him, does a little food dance and of course a greeting wag! I am surprised how attached I am, already!
Problem all started when I decided to add one red crystal shrimp, Crusty, and four pygmy Corydoras on Saturday. I was really tentative to add the shrimp, watched them like a hawk for hours and Anthony ignored all the new additions. So I thought all was OK. Anthony was going to be one of the "good" tolerant bettas and not eat poor Crusty. Next morning, no Crusty to be found and still no sign, so I can only assume Anthony did have an overnight snack. I feel really badly about that because the shrimp was very cute and went right to work cleaning the bottom of the tank. I fed Anthony less pellets Sunday. Then I added one half algae wafer for the corys Sunday afternoon and later I saw Anthony snacking on it! I had no idea he would try it.
This morning my poor betta has a very swollen tummy and didn't come to greet me as usual. It appears as though he is trying to spit something out too. I feel even worse that I couldn't stay home but had to go to work. All corys are accounted for so I would assume the shrimp plus the algae wafer, way too much food!!
What should I do? I don't want Anthony to die for sure! I do have a QT tank I can isolate him in if I had to. Should I do epsom salt treatment?? And of course a few days' fasting wouldn't hurt?
Any advice would be so appreciated, and possibly life-saving.
This is one of the biggest problems with mixed species and Bettas...feeding...Bettas can be such pigs.....they will overeat themselves to death...little buggers.....I agree with purplemuffin-fast him and all the fish for 2-3 days if needed....make a 50% water only change today and if the Betta doesn't look better within 24h....I would QT and start Epsom salt treatment....then you are going to have to figure out some way to feed the corydoras without the Betta getting to their food......you can either cup the Betta and let him float in the tank while the corydoras are eating or feed the corydoras 1 hour after lights out-you want to add the algae wafer with something so you can lay it directly on the floor behind something....you don't want the Betta to see it fall...this doesn't always work...but something you could try maybe.....
I came home from work fearing the worst, however, Anthony was happy to see me and swam around excitedly as he usually does! He still looks bloated and I will continue to fast him as recommended. I did the 50% water change too. Everyone seems OK in there - yay!!
OFL, when you say to feed the corys an hour after lights out, would that work because the betta would be asleep, or unable to see the wafer, or?? Anthony patrols the bottom of the tank too, he is usually quite active really, so I suspect any food down there soon would be discovered. If I can work out the food divvying-up I will keep the corys as I feel responsible for them. They're super-cute and super-fast too! Of course Anthony is still king of the tank .......
Don't give up hope on the shrimp just yet. When I first got shrimp, I didn't see them for a week or so and I thought they had all died. Then they showed up again occasionally, then all the time, then made lots of babies. Granted, red cherries are easier to keep than crystal reds, but it could be Crusty is still around. :)
I would definitely go with cupping Anthony. Bettas are piglets and will eat til they burst (not literally). I don't think waiting til after lights out would be foolproof - my girls still hunt for food on the bottom after dark.
Make sure you also give the cories some meaty sinking foods or spirulina - Nutrafin sinking pellets are pretty good. They aren't algae eaters, so they do need some proper nutrients. :)
You did a great job on your tank.....looks great....often if you will use long tongs to place the food in the tank while the Betta is distracted with eating or something...so that he doesn't see it fall.....can help...also, you may want to switch to shrimp pellets for the corydoras since they are more meat eaters than veggie matter and if the Betta happen to get to some of the left over shrimp pellet it won't be so hard on his system like an algae wafer.....I should have caught that on your first post...sorry....