Hi everyone. It's been awhile since I've posted here, because I've been busy battling with narcolepsy and school at the same time. But, I need to bring up something very important to everyone and spread the word so that this does not happen to you.
I have had two bettas divided in a 10g tank for awhile now. No problems at all. Two happy fish. I had moved some plants from one tank into this tank, not remembering that I had a few pest snails in that tank (I have a loach taking care of them now). The snails spread in my 10g tank despite water changes - I wasn't about to pick every single little snail off of the divider. Perhaps being asleep 90% of the time and school made me incredibly careless. I did take them both out of the tank and soak everything in hot hot water to kill the snails, except the filter. There are fewer in the tank now, but they are still there.
About two weeks ago, I noticed that one of my bettas, my orange one Laki, had a lump in his throat, between the bottom of his two gills, below his mouth. I dismissed it as just food, since he's always been a small betta. I floated him in a tupperware bowl for a few days so he could get air. Three days in, the lump wasn't going down. He couldn't eat, and the only other thing it could have been in his throat was a small snail. His condition worsening, I decided to order some clove oil and send him on his way. Before it could arrive, he died during the night. It was apparent that his labrynth organ was blocked and his gills were in overdrive, but it wasn't enough to save him.
I took the divider out of the tank and pulled out the 1-2 snails on the side of the tank, and bought a loach to take care of the remaining snails. But I think it was too late. Even though I see no snails now, the second betta in that tank now has a small lump in his throat. Just to make sure it was indeed a lump, I put one small pellet in the tank and just like Laki, he had a hard time grasping the pellet, and when he did, the lump in his throat grew. He is now in a breeding trap so that he can get air if he does sink down to the bottom. I'm going to monitor him for a day or two to see if his condition worsens or if he passes the snail, but he's most likely on his way out as well. :(
Betta owners, if you have pest snails in your tank, GET THEM OUT! I've never seen this stressed before here, but I'm stressing it now. Two bettas lost in two weeks, that has to be a record.
Thanks for listening guys. :)