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Old 11-01-2011, 02:08 PM   #1 
Larsa's Avatar
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Plano, TX
Sorority girl check-up, Help please please :(

Hello all, as some of you might know I just lost one of my original fish from some weird illness more than likely from water quality. I lost another one last month that I am still trying to recover from the loss. I want to know if any of you can see something maybe I cannot spot. I have little experience with fish diseases and I would like to make sure none of my other girls have something serious. Right now, since yesterday, all the girls are isolated after their alpha's random death. Here is the thread if you owuld like to get an idea about how she died:

Here's the data and the pictures:

What size is your tank?
10 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 78F-82F
Does your tank have a filter? Yes- cartridge is new.
Does your tank have an air stone or other aeration? Nope.
Is your tank heated? Yes, a Tetra heater.
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? I have 5 total female bettas in a sorority
*Decorations in tank: Only smooth polished pebbles, a thermometer, a heater, and various fake tall plants that do not snag pantyhose. None of them are painted or dyed.


What type of food do you feed your betta fish? 3 NLS Betta pellets daily, or, 2 NLS and one Tetra FD Bloodworm daily.
How often do you feed your betta fish? once a day for 7 days a week.


How often do you perform a water change? One change 50% one week, one 100% the next week, repeat.So evey other week I do a full water change, but, sometimes I dont have the time so I do a 50% for 2 weeks.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? Above ^^
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? I use 7 drops of prime per gallon I add and occasionally, 1/2 a tsp of AQ salt.

Water Parameters:

Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? Yes, yesterday at 10:14 am

Ammonia: 0 Ideal

Nitrite: 0 safe
Nitrate: 0 safe
pH: 7.5 acceptable
Hardness: 155- fairly hard
Alkalinity: 280-high

Symptoms and Treatment

How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
- minor pop-eye; Aimi- grey spots on mouth; Amaya- grey spots, fin rot, color loss ( yellow hue); Kimiyo- color loss ( slight yellow hue) Okami- color loss on fins
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? None are presently showing any strange or abnormal behavior. All are active, eatting like pigs, and occasionally rest when needed.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? After Sakura died 10-31-11 :'(
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I removed them IMMEDIETLY from their sorority in fresh clean water stored in individual cups-with daikly water changes. The water, cups, and net have been sterilized with a high-powered UV sterilizing light prior to withdrawing fish from home tank. Kasumi has a pinch of epsom salt in her cup.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? they all have had minor fin rot. Kasumi and Amaya have had minor pop-eye a month ago.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Kasumi- 9 months; Aimi- at least 8 months; Amaya-8 months; Kimiyo- at least 9 months; Okami- 4 months

So there ya go! I took pictures of my girls and hopefully we can collect some data. I do need to point out that my tap water is NASTY this time of year. My local area is trying to recover from the drought. The water is sort of sour and used to have an odor a while ago- I really think this is from the drought. I also wanna note ALL of my fish right now have pop-eye. I keep up with their water changes and sterilize their tanks, rocks, filter, filter cartridges, etc etc with a UV light and 140F how water so idk whats going on :( I bought a sink faucet filter to remove some of the nasty impurities-if this water is safe for fish, lemme know because right now all I can do is use Natural spring water that contains the minerals sodium bicarbonate magnesium and calcium. Trust me- LOL its waaaaayyyy safer than my city's public water- I wont even drink it!!! I would like to know how to make tap water softer and safer as much as possible because right now from the faucet-the water is very hard with high alkalinity. I am especially worried about Kasumi more than any of my other girls because of her pop-eye. Also if you look under her can see like "lines" or "wrinkles" those are not at all normal and Sakura had those before she died. Also Kimiyo and Amaya have a slight yellow hue to them. My first reaction was to shine a flashlight at them and check for velvet but I dont think its velvet. Okami has always had red markings near her gills and Aimi has always had sorta pink gills. No one is lethargic or not eatting. All are acting normal right now. I dont see any noticeable parasites either. I really wanna save all my fish :( I really hope Im not a horrible fish owner. I am willing to do almost anything to save these fish. I am tired of loosing babies, they are all I have that will be closest to children and I love them all so much.**I am wondering if my air quality can effect their water. My AC unit filter has not been recently changed in months and I cannot change it without my APT's maintenence team or its a $300 fine. We seldom use it but we know it needs changed. I have been bugging them, trust me.

***Please no rude comments, I have had a HORRIBLE and very stressful holiday weekend doing research on diseases, water changes, dealing with a dead fish and confused sorority, family, work, and my own health issues out the wall, etc etc etc. Thank you in advance for any help!


3 pictures for each girl show side, ventral, and dorsal view.

1. Kasumi- green/blue CT
2. Aimi- cellophane VT
3.Amaya- grey/royal blue CT
4. Kimiyo-brown/blue CT
5. Okami- red cambodian CT

*** sorry this thread was so long, thank you sooo much for anyone who bothered to read this all-thank you bunchs for your time!
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Old 11-01-2011, 03:08 PM   #2 
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Join Date: Aug 2011
They all are pretty, love them!
Kasumi- I really don't see the popeye on her.. but if you are worried you could do the 1tsp Epsom Salt per gallon treatment with 100% daily water changes.. I would do it for a week and see if there is a change. If there is no change then I would go ahead and chalk it up to her having slightly larger eyes.

Aimi- looks to be her natural coloration. Usually with anything dealing with the mouth it's fungus, and that is the white cottony puffs.

Amaya- It looks like she is fine.. there are a few very tiny spots on her fins that are darker on the edges.. but if it's rot, it's a very mild case and the daily water changes you have been doing will help her clear that up.

As for the other two.. Kimiyo is stressed, so she will lose coloration from that, and Okami looks healthy. The loss of fin coloration can be a sign that they aren't receiving enough of a balanced nutrition and protein. Which a little more food will help.. if you have frozen blood worms or brine shrimp, those would be great.

Otherwise, they all look good. I continued reading and you mentioned they all have popeye, when in fact, they all look very normal in their eyes, including Kasumi. All fish have that big clear "bubble" lens over their eyes, and when looking at it from different angles, sometimes appears larger. But from all I saw of them, they all look very healthy, other then a tad bit skinny.

A few suggestions though on other aspects: For a filtered tank, you don't want to be doing 100% water changes. 10 gallons you will want to do one 30-50% water change per week, with bi-weekly to monthly siphoning of the substrate. You can have too clean of water that can be as harmful as too dirty of water. You can start out with doing 50% per week, and the day before your change, test your water and see where it stands. If all looks good you can work your way down to about 30% as long as you see no increase in ammonia/nitrate/ites.

It is highly recommended to not use AQ salt on a regular basis, as excess exposure (for longer then treatment period) you have a very high risk of causing internal problems such as kidney failure. AQ salt will remove fluids from within the body, so in time it will dehydrate them within. Why it's recommended to not use it for more then 10 days, 14 days that absolute longest. Even then you run a small risk, but after 10 days it's easier to recover. So you just want to use your regular water conditioner. If they stress out easily during water changes, you could always add in a few drops of API Stress Coat to help soothe them, and that won't harm them any, and it won't over dose your conditioner.

Your girls look a little thin, in my opinion. 3 pellets a day is rather on the low end.. normal recommendations are 4-6 total a day, and it's always best to feed twice+ a day rather then one since you either over feed, or under feed when feeding just once a day. So when you wake up, and before bed are good times, 2-3 pellets each girl, each feeding. (Unsure if you feed them one pellet at a time and keep an eye on who eats and whatnot to make sure one isn't being too hoggy.)

As for air quality, it will affect their breathing as well as can lead to dust getting in the water. I understand you are worried, and we all understand how much we can love these little ones. It is best to make sure everyone is doing fine.. but sometimes you have to remember that fish are like us, and that they could have a problem with an internal organ, a bad heart, something that could easily diminish their life span. We can't always explain their deaths, nor are we always at fault for them. It's good to be cautious, but remember that sometimes one can over do it in the way of trying to care for them and end up putting them through needless stress and medications. Unless another member says they see something for sure, I wouldn't worry about treating them for anything specific, just a clean, warm home would be good.

Last edited by Myates; 11-01-2011 at 03:14 PM.
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Old 11-01-2011, 03:23 PM   #3 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
You take awesome pics.....

First you are not a bad fish keeper.....

Next your water is not too is actually better to keep Bettas in harder is soft compared to

Good that you have QT all the fish-I would start getting them out of the aquarium salt and get them changed over the Epsom salt 3tsp/gal and tannins-along with 100% daily water changes in the QT for 10-14 days if you feel they have popeye, however, they look fine to me.

You may want to re-acclimate them all back to the 10gal and get it cycled-stress may be the biggest issue and this alone can compromise the immune response-especially with sororities......

Can you post a pic of the tank-it is important that you have several places in the tank that has tall items-all the way to the top in a least 3 different places to help break the line of sight-
Bettas are surface dwellers and need a way to the top without being seen

Since your 10gal is filtered-stop making the 100% water changes and changing the filter media....your tank isn't cycled (0ppm nitrate) and this may or may not be part of the problem.....unless you have a lot of live plants-

The biological filter needs to get established to help with your water quality....

Don't change the filter media-give it a swish/rinse in old tank water with a water change a couple of times a month-once you get the nitrogen cycle established

Make 50% with vacuum weekly and 50% water only with ammonia, nitrite 0.25ppm or greater-until you have nitrate 10-20ppm without any ammonia/nitrite spikes.

It is important when using any of the salts for medication to use it in therapeutic using a pinch here and there...can cause resistant issues and use of sodium chloride long term can cause kidney damage in Bettas and you will start to see swelling problems due to system shut down.

It is better to use dechlorinated tap water without it going through any water soften unit on the faucet....especially if it uses sodium chloride...this will just do an Ion exchange and in the long term is worse on the fish.

You don't want to create too clean/sterile environment-it can't support life and it can mess with your balance....

*Premixed treatment water-use a 1gal jug of dechlorinated water-Add Epsom salt 3tsp/gal and a tannin source-either IAL or dried Oak leaf and let this steep for 30min to release some of the tannins and the salt to dissolve-Use this water for 50% water changes every hour for 1 hour on each of the girls in QT that has popeye-this will get them acclimated to the treatment water....Tomorrow start 100% water changes with the premixed treatment water for 10-14 days....

Is the popeye on both eyes or just one eye?
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:10 PM   #4 
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Join Date: May 2011
Location: Plano, TX
Thank you so much for the lovely comments and help! OMG XD you and Sakura 8 are both super awesome!!

Well with Kasumi she has these thin white rings around both her eyes, they look grey in the picture. I was told this was a minor form of pop-eye. I looks like Okami's red color came back on her fins. Kasumi is a little stressed right now however Kimiyo was the omega and she always seemed to make stress-lines when Sakura was around or if there was any light. Hopefully the dried oak leaves will help them out! Right now I have their cups in a shady spot so they can relax and sleep :)

For their food I have NLS pellets, freeze-dried blood worms, frozen dapnia, and frozen beefheart. I am scared to use some of the beef because I dont want them to be constipated XD but out of these, what would you suggest feeding them? I am also feeding them just once a day and if they need a heary supper to go with their breakfast I can do that ;)

Also with prime and tap water I am using 7 drops per gallon because I am using empty Ozarka 1 gal jugs to transfer water from the sink to their tank. Should I add the conditioner after I do water changes so there are less drops?

Dried Oak leaves? 0.o thats great because I have an oak tree right outside my door and they are dried from the sun and fall weather! ^-^ Idk if it is was treated with pesticides however, likely not though.

Here is the picture of my tank! I dont have any live plants right now, but I would like some good surface floating plants like you said ^.^ *I would also take a picture of Kasumi's eyes but right now she is sleeping and I dont wanna wake her, she has had a longer, tougher weekend than me! lolz she deserves her rest =)
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Last edited by Larsa; 11-01-2011 at 10:15 PM.
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:16 PM   #5 
betta lover1507
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Location: IL, Chicago
ok my check is not highly accurate, but they look fine *edit* Amaya looks like she has a bit of fin rot on her tail, but thats just me

i overseened you where talking about popeye? my HMPK boy "oceanist" just recovered from it, none look like they have pop eye to me

go to here:
it would show dieseases symptoms, cures, etc
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Old 11-02-2011, 09:42 AM   #6 
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Originally Posted by Myates View Post
Your girls look a little thin, in my opinion. 3 pellets a day is rather on the low end.. normal recommendations are 4-6 total a day, and it's always best to feed twice+ a day rather then one since you either over feed, or under feed when feeding just once a day. So when you wake up, and before bed are good times, 2-3 pellets each girl, each feeding. (Unsure if you feed them one pellet at a time and keep an eye on who eats and whatnot to make sure one isn't being too hoggy.)
The pellets would be a very good main staple, if you can get frozen bloodworms, those would be great over the freeze dried ones. Unsure about the beef heart and I have never used it. But I think it would be a good idea to give them a good high protein dinner =) A variety is always highly recommended over the same type day in and day out. (Unfortunately, sometimes getting some to eat different foods can be rather challenging. I have 2 that won't eat anything but pellets and it's frustrating lol)
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Old 11-02-2011, 11:58 AM   #7 
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Location: Plano, TX
Ok! I can get all kinds of frozen dinners for them! Luckily, my girls will try to eat ANYTHING!! LOLZ they try to eat their rocks, fake plants, and my fingers XD especially my fingers hahaha they arnt picky and they have tried all different kinds of betta foods ;)

Why, right nowI have them sitting on a glass table in clear cups. I am right next to them and I had some skittles i sat down next to the table and they all swam down completely vertical looking at the skittles shaking their lil tails!! XD none for
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Old 11-02-2011, 01:41 PM   #8 
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I have noticed that girls will eat anything, but the boys can be picky. At least from my experience and reading on here lol.

I can't even get my boys to eat live food.. bah! But yeah, that is the only suggestion I have is the food, as multiple small meals during the day is generally better then just one.
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Old 11-02-2011, 10:19 PM   #9 
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ok! Will do! ^-^ So with my ten gallon.... all the fish are removed and QT'd. Should I do a full water change and try to clean everything off with hot water, change the filter cartridge and start from scratch again since a fish died? I would like to get some floating plants for my girls to help cycle their tank! Which ones would you prefer without an algae infestation? ^-^
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