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Old 04-28-2012, 10:30 AM   #1 
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fish died last night. help.

My first fish, Dahli died last night. I knew his conditions weren't perfect but I already have a larger tank and a heater on the way to move him into one I could cycle it. He was in an unheated one gallon. I was feeding twice a day (with one fast day) and doing 100% changes twice a week. I know bettas need warm water which is why ordered a heater. I tried heating the one gallon but it was way too warm and I figured he'd be fine for about a month until I could get everything worked out.

He seemed fine yesterday. He was swimming around. He stressed out as usual when I cupped him to change his water, maybe a bit more so. He seemed fine when I first put him in the tank. Swimming around, maybe more than usual. I turned the light off and I could hear him splashing around a bit. I turned on my light briefly at one point and he was lying on the bottom of the tank. I figured he was just sleeping and left him alone.

This morning I woke up and he was in the same position he was the night before. This seemed odd so I tapped the glass to wake him up. He didn't so I stuck my hand in the water and tried splashing around and then tried moving the decoration that was next to him. He's dead.

There seems to be a grey film over his body that wasn't there last night. I don't know if film is the right word. Basically he looks grey but you can still see his colors underneath.

The only other living thing in his tank was a moss ball that I actually didn't put back in after the water change yesterday.

I'm eating myself up here. I'm sure it is something that I did. Everyone thinks I'm crazy but I grew very attached to Dahli in the month that I've had him. I had just decided to try and teach him to jump for his food. I loved the little bugger and he had a great personality. I want to know what it was so I can know if it really was my fault and also so I know better in the case that I get another fish (which I certainly wouldn't do until after I have the five gallon set up, heated, and cycled).

Any help on identifying the problem would be much appreciated.
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Old 04-28-2012, 12:44 PM   #2 
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I took him out of his tank to get a closet look. There were like little white things clinging to him. They were not there last night when I cupped him nor did I see them when I checked on him. I don't know if they are part of what caused his death or some sort of fungus that started growing on him after. He could have passed away any time between midnight and 10:30 this morning so I don't really know how long he was laying in his tank.

I took some pictures of him before I buried him to show you guys what I was talking about.

My computer cannot handle opening photoshop right now so I couldn't resize them so here they are in links
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Old 04-28-2012, 01:30 PM   #3 
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Wow. I'm so sorry for the loss.
Sometimes things happen and we don't know why...
That looks terrifying that that happened over night.
I don't know if that film was part of the illness, fish start moulding over like that pretty soon after they die, could have happened over night.

I'd head over to the nearest pet shop and have them test your tap water for ammonia...
Other than that, I don't know, some betta are much weaker than others.. He could have just been frail to begin with.
:( He looks like he was really beautiful.
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Old 04-29-2012, 12:24 AM   #4 
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it looks like a massive outbreak of columnarious or fungus. BUT after death they do normally "fade" and get slimy. My first thought is an irritant/contaminant in the water.

I'm sorry I don't have any other suggestions, and I'm so sorry about your loss.
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Old 04-29-2012, 11:41 AM   #5 
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I appreciate your responses.

I'm thinking that the white stuff was postmortem because I can't imagine that growing on him in only a few hours.

I don't think it was ammonia because it happened just after I changed his water. My best guess is it was something in the water. It's odd because I've been using that water source with the same water conditioned for about a month.
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Old 04-30-2012, 02:50 AM   #6 
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I'm sorry for your loss. Looks like columnaris to me, too. I watched a massive outbreak cover and kill one of my fish in just a couple of hours one night--with no meds to stop it. It can come on that fast.
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Old 04-30-2012, 09:04 AM   #7 
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So sorry :( I don't know if it columnaris or postmortem like you wrote. I think if he was dead for 8-10 hrs in that water it can be postmortem.

I know stupid question but is there any way you forget to put water conditioner? Or big difference between new water temperature and his water?
Something definitely with water since he got like that right after you change him.
I do 100% water all the time. I have betta at work in 1 gall and i always let water sit overnight WITH water conditioner IN it so water will be the same temperature when i change him.

Aging water used to be the best way to remove chlorine. Now there's chloramines in most water,too,which aging does not remove, but good conditioners will. Aging water stabilizes ph .

Also disinfect the tank really well if you going to put another fish there.
Use bleach 1 to 10 (10% solution) for a minimum of 10 minutes the tank itself and anything else non porous that you an bleach. Wash it very well make sure there is no residue left. Wipe it. Wash it very well again and let it stay in sunlight outside or inside for a few days to neutralize the bleach. Rinse it again
Good luck with new betta.
Sorry it happen unfortunately:(

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Old 04-30-2012, 08:49 PM   #8 
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I know I put water conditioner in. I let his cup float in it for a while and then filled it partly with the new water. The temperature shouldn't have been a little off but no more than 2 degrees. It was the same way I always did.I didn't age the water. I was already a day late with the change so I wanted to get him in clean water as fast as possible.

I'm just going to ditch the tank. If I get another betta it won't be for a while because I think I'm going abroad in the fall.
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:39 AM   #9 
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I am sorry about Dahli. He looked like a beautiful fish.
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Old 05-01-2012, 01:01 PM   #10 
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So weird have no idea what could happened. Unless something get in to the water. Looks like you did everything right way. It actually exactly what i do all the time.

You actually really don't have to ditch the tank though. You can disinfect it with bleach (10% solution). Let us know we will give you instructions if you change your mind. Everything else in the tank i would not use.

Have a good time and i hope to see you back:)

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