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Old 01-22-2012, 06:11 PM   #1 
Tappy4me
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Tango acting strange

MVI 2183 - YouTube

Here is a video of what he is doing. I'm starting to worry a bit...he's eating normally otherwise, and looks good. But he just started doing this last night...especially after he flares at something, it gets worse.

After he 'hiccups' (best i can describe it) air, he quickly darts to the bottom and hides behind something, almost as if he is trying to wedge himself there. A short time later, he does it again. Right now he is hiding under the Indian Almond leaf that sunk to the bottom and is breathing kind of hard.

Unfortunately, I don't have my test kit at the moment as I've let my boyfriend borrow it for setting up his dwarf puffer tank. All the petstores have been out of them, so we haven't been able to buy him one.

I did a half tank water change this morning (he's in a 2 gallon Aqueon Evolve), and have been doing tiny water changes over the last few days. (2 betta cups worth each morning) I don't have the filter running in his tank yet. It's just heated and has a java fern, anubias, and marimo moss ball in there.

Any ideas what is going on? I use prime water conditioner with my water changes, like I've always done.
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Old 01-22-2012, 06:52 PM   #2 
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My original post won't let me edit..so I'm posting again.

Here's two videos showing him breathing hard. It's not all the time, but it is happening quite frequently.

MVI 2191 - YouTube

MVI 2192 - YouTube
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Old 01-22-2012, 08:07 PM   #3 
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The way it looks, I say Tango may be stressed. When his fins clasp to his body that usually happens when a betta is stressed. But him going under his plants... Maybe he's hiding from something, Idk. I hope he returns to his natural behavior!
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Old 01-22-2012, 08:09 PM   #4 
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Since you mentioned you cleaned his tank and it gets worse whenever he flares it's probably stress.
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Old 01-22-2012, 08:13 PM   #5 
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It's not the first time I've cleaned his tank, and he's been fine afterwards thus far...

But I hope that's all it is.
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Old 01-22-2012, 08:21 PM   #6 
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That's some heavy-duty breathing he gets going there. It looks like . . . he burps from his gills and then struggles to breathe afterward. Does that sound right?

Has he been rubbing or darting on anything? Can you get a look at his gills? They should look pink-red, like raw steak. If they are a dark red or gray/white, then he's having some gill trouble.
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Old 01-22-2012, 08:25 PM   #7 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sakura8 View Post
That's some heavy-duty breathing he gets going there. It looks like . . . he burps from his gills and then struggles to breathe afterward. Does that sound right?

Has he been rubbing or darting on anything? Can you get a look at his gills? They should look pink-red, like raw steak. If they are a dark red or gray/white, then he's having some gill trouble.
That's exactly what is going on. His gills are pink-red...no sign of dark red or gray/white at the moment.
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Old 01-22-2012, 08:41 PM   #8 
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That's good his gills are a normal color. Hmm. There are a few possibilities. One is some scar tissue from an old ammonia burn is causing his gills to push outward like that. This is called gill hyperplasia and in most cases, it isn't reversible. A betta can live with this condition just fine but he'll always have heavy breathing and may need a lowered water level as he'll breathe more often from his labyrinth organ. Another possibility is gill flukes are in there. These buggers are almost always microscopic and past cases have shown that not every betta afflicted with them rubs and darts. What we can do is try and treat him for a possible case. You can use General Cure or Seachem ParaGuard, both will be pretty effective. Hopefully this will clear things up. Unfortunately, you will probably want to remove him to a hospital tank, since you have live plants in the Evolve.
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Old 01-22-2012, 09:03 PM   #9 
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Originally Posted by Sakura8 View Post
That's good his gills are a normal color. Hmm. There are a few possibilities. One is some scar tissue from an old ammonia burn is causing his gills to push outward like that. This is called gill hyperplasia and in most cases, it isn't reversible. A betta can live with this condition just fine but he'll always have heavy breathing and may need a lowered water level as he'll breathe more often from his labyrinth organ. Another possibility is gill flukes are in there. These buggers are almost always microscopic and past cases have shown that not every betta afflicted with them rubs and darts. What we can do is try and treat him for a possible case. You can use General Cure or Seachem ParaGuard, both will be pretty effective. Hopefully this will clear things up. Unfortunately, you will probably want to remove him to a hospital tank, since you have live plants in the Evolve.

I can put the plants in a different tank temporarily. I don't have the filter up and running in this tank, so I'm fine with treating in tank.

I'll have to stop after work and get some Seachem Paraguard if I can find it. Maybe him wedging himself between things is his version of flicking/rubbing? He's done that since I got him, but started this behavior today.

It could very well be that he has some old scar tissue...he was on deaths door when I bought him a week ago...the cup he was in was filthy. But he didn't breathe this heavy until today. I didn't do anything differently when I changed the water than I normally do.
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:21 PM   #10 
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Just did a 100% water change in case there was something in there bothering him. Upon looking a bit closer, his gills are pinkish, but the undersides of his gill flaps are a darker color. I don't remember if that was how I got him or not. Maybe he does have a bit of ammonia burn scars from being in that little cup so long.

I added an old decoration to his tank I had on hand to give him an extra area to hide. I'll pull the plants out if I should indeed treat him for gill flukes.

After this water change, he is acting a little more normal in terms of swimming around. Currently, he's exploring the new layout, and seems to be looking for a good spot to camp out. I added a new Indian Almond leaf to the tank.

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