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Old 04-14-2012, 01:19 PM   #1 
Bettafeathers
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Bloating?

Hey there!

I just recently go myself a new betta and I noticed last night he has a big belly. It looks like a mild case of bloat - more like he just ate too much. However, this couldn't be a case of too much food I don't imagine. I usually feed my boys in the evening, and they get the smallest New Life Spectrum pellets they make. Think guppy sized, since this is who I bought the pellets for since the my one betta (older one) shares a tank with the guppies. When I feed the new guy (with the bloated belly) I've been giving him probably 6-8 of these pellets once a day. It's hard to tell how many since they're so small and stick to my fingers.

New boy is happy and active, flaring and blowing bubbles (and thoroughly fascinated with his anubias haha), so I believe he's heathy.

My last betta always had a bloated belly too, he ate sand though, but was on the same pellet. Is it possible since this is a hard pellet that my boy has a hard time digesting it? Should I maybe try feeding him flakes or something less compact to see if this helps his issue?

What do you do to cure bloating?

Thanks!
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:21 PM   #2 
laoshun
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fast him for a day, you can choose a day of the week to do this for him. 6-8 pellets is a little too much it should be more like 2-4. Hope that kind of helps.
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Old 04-14-2012, 01:55 PM   #3 
Beall
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Woah! 6-8 per day? You should definately be feeding between 2-4. A bettas stomach is no bigger than his eye. So when your feeding him that much, hes definately eatin too much. Fast him for a day, and feed 2-4 pellets. I throw mine in at random times throughout the day, so he can actively burn it down with his metabolism
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Old 04-14-2012, 02:03 PM   #4 
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if you find yourself often looking at your betta, you could always do 1 pellet and then come back and feed more, just a thought.
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Old 04-14-2012, 03:54 PM   #5 
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These pellets are maybe half of the size of a regular betta pellet, maybe even less - I can't honestly pick up one at a time they are so small. Hence why I feed him that many. It's about the equivalent to 3 betta pellets I'd say. These are made for small fish like guppies with tiny mouths. Laoshun, that's a good idea, I am around often so maybe I'll spread out feeding him.

I've attached a picture of the pellet I feed him versus the "betta" pellet I have that I don't feed (its a low quality brand I realised after I bought it) just for comparisons sake. If I were feeding the larger pellet I would absolutely feed no more than 3.

I'll cut him back though and see what that does for him. I usually fast on Saturday nights anyways so I'll try a different regime starting Sunday.

The small dark pellet is the one I feed:

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Old 04-14-2012, 04:06 PM   #6 
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Bloating has other symptoms involved, a rounded belly after eating is normal and healthy.. you just don't want it to become too large. You can fast for a day if you wish, but not necessary unless he is having trouble swimming.

It depends on the brand of food you feed, on how much to give to your betta. As well as how old the betta is.

They should be fed at least twice a day, or more if possible- with high quality food that have meat/fish meal (or actual seafood) as the first ingredient.
Some pellets are rather small, and you could feed more of. Some are larger and you would want to feed less. Just keep in mind that feeding once a day you tend to either over feed, or under feed.. and neither is ideal.

If the pellets are the larger ones that are about the size of their eyes, then 2-3 pellets per meal, twice a day is recommended.
If the pellets are smaller (i.e. the Omega One betta buffet pellets) then you can easily feed anywhere from 5 to 8 per meal, twice a day.
Again, that is for an adult betta (over 1.5 inches body wise- or approx a year old. Keep in mind majority of the bettas you purchase at retailers are only around 3-4 months of age).
Younger bettas will require a smaller portion, but more meals per day then an adult.

If the food is low quality- aka cheap- then the chance of bloating and becoming constipated is higher. But it doesn't mean it will happen as long as you are feeding a good amount.

You will also want to make sure you give them a variety in their diet- high quality pellets are good staples for common keepers, Omega One, New Life Spectrum seem to be the top choices for most keepers. They have good quality ingredients.. I personally feed Omega One for when it's time to feed pellets (or for my very very picky eaters who will only eat pellets (a disadvantage of taking in older bettas sometimes)). I feed anywhere between 4-8 per meal depending on which fish it is- I have all sizes and age ranges.
Some flake food is actually very nutritious- the Omega One betta flakes are actually a bit better then the pellets, just have to know how much to feed and be prepared to remove any uneaten immediately after feeding time.
Frozen foods can be okay, just make sure to get the better brands, as sometimes the freezing process can actually take out a lot of nutrition and makes the food empty calories.
Freeze dried has protein, but lacks in everything else and is considered empty calories as well.. good for a treat if you wish, but I never really gotten into feed FD with mine personally. I have two different types, but they have collected dust over the past year since I prefer healthier treats.
Live foods are also great, and free... all you need is a decent sized bucket of sorts and a place to put it outside.. fill it with water, twigs, leafs, maybe some grass and you have a nursery for mosquito and daphnia- use a small fish net or a shrimp net and scoop out the larvae, quick rinse under some water and your fish will be in heaven. Natural instinct to eat them will come into play.. fun to watch them chase the food around.
You can also raise your own live food- the fry of live bearer fish (guppies, platies, mollies, etc) can be fed to larger bettas as well for good nutrition, and it gives you a chance to fill the fry's guts with nutritious food that will in turn end up in your betta.
Also there are recipes for homemade food that is awesome to feed, if you wish I can find the posting for it here.

I hope this helps you some.. again, 6-8 pellets a day isn't bad, but make sure it's spread between 2+ feedings, and they are higher quality. Then you won't have to worry about bloating. :)

True bloat you will see difficulty in swimming, tipping (similar to sbd), you may also have constipation that goes with it, etc.

*The 1.5 inch was not meant to say that a betta is an adult at that size, but rather the betta is large enough to feed larger quantities, and less frequent then the younger/smaller bettas*

Last edited by Myates; 04-14-2012 at 04:13 PM.
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:08 PM   #7 
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Since you posted this while I was typing.. 6-8 is definitely fine to feed him.. but he may be prone to rounding out more then others- try 4-5 per meal twice a day and see how he fairs.. if he is swimming fine then don't worry about fasting for multiple days, I would say no longer then 1 day is all that is needed.

What brand is it?
Also, is he a crowntail?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettafeathers View Post
These pellets are maybe half of the size of a regular betta pellet, maybe even less - I can't honestly pick up one at a time they are so small. Hence why I feed him that many. It's about the equivalent to 3 betta pellets I'd say. These are made for small fish like guppies with tiny mouths. Laoshun, that's a good idea, I am around often so maybe I'll spread out feeding him.

I've attached a picture of the pellet I feed him versus the "betta" pellet I have that I don't feed (its a low quality brand I realised after I bought it) just for comparisons sake. If I were feeding the larger pellet I would absolutely feed no more than 3.

I'll cut him back though and see what that does for him. I usually fast on Saturday nights anyways so I'll try a different regime starting Sunday.

The small dark pellet is the one I feed:

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Old 04-14-2012, 04:24 PM   #8 
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Wow, thank you. That was a lot of really great information! I'll try to feed him twice a day instead of just once. He's definitely swimming fine, looking like quite the happy camper! The pellet that I feed (the dark brown once) is New Life Spectrum small fish formula - local fish store (no chain store) people said that it would be good for the bettas as well. I was thinking of picking up the betta formula though. The light brown pellet (which I don't feed) is a Hikari betta bio gold - but I heard those were low quality and that a better food should be chosen. Hence why I ousted them from my feeding program.

Nope, he is not a crowntail. I've been told he is a feather tail. He's a halfmoon with a ridiculous amount of overlapping tail finnage - he looks ruffled. If you want to see I posted a thread in the pictures. I believed titled "My Boys". Do crowntails have a predisposition to bloat or something like that?

Also, I'd definitely be interested in the homemade recipes. If it's not too much trouble for you to find the threads, I would love that!

Thanks again :)

Last edited by Bettafeathers; 04-14-2012 at 04:24 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 04-14-2012, 04:43 PM   #9 
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NLS small fish formula isn't bad, it has good quality ingredients.. just not as much seafood as I like. You could also look for the NLS "Grow" formula as well, as that is packed full of nutritious yummies for your betta. Sometimes the betta specific can be hard to find, and if you can get it then go for it.

Hikari isn't "bad", it's pretty popular actually. They had recently changed their formula, and from what I understand it is lacking now when it used to be one of the top brands. So I think your call on that is right- just better to get something a little better if you can.

CTs don't bloat more per se, their bodies are more streamlined and they can seem to have a larger belly then normal. (As seen in the pics below- that is my Spyro, the only one of my CTs that had ever stood still long enough for a picture lol)

As for the homemade, one I follow that I had gotten off an esteemed member here (Oldfishlady) is this:

1-raw or steamed shrimp-I have used fish fillets, redworms
3-6-fresh garlic cloves depending on the size and use a garlic press to crush
3-6-fresh spinach leaves-blanched/wilted

I chop the shrimp and then use the side of the knife to make it paste like, not smooth it will still have some larger bits, I then smash the crushed garlic and warm blanched spinach together and add this to the shrimp and smash it all together to make a green, garlic shrimp paste-I use the tip of a round tipped knife and feed to one betta at a time and smash it on the side of the knife and swirl it around in the tank to feed multi fish and fry
Place in a ziploc and flatten it, so you can tear off pieces at feeding time. It's very very healthy and gives them the vitamins that bettas need. I feed a mix of this, Omega One pellets, and live foods to my fish to keep them healthy and happy. :)


As you can see, his belly looks pretty large, but he isn't bloated nor constipated.. just was after a good meal :)
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Last edited by Myates; 04-14-2012 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 04-15-2012, 04:15 PM   #10 
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Thank you for the recipe! I'll see what I can do about hunting down some shrimp and garlic next time I'm at the grocery store.

That's interesting about the CT's. I didn't know that!

Thank you for all your information - it was extremely helpful!!
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