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Antonio, approx. 9months, galaxy koi betta imported from Thailand.

I have completed the questionnaire below. About 1.5 weeks ago he started swimming nose up and had labored breathing. He appeared bloated, so I suspected swim bladder disease. I separated him to monitor waste for 3 days and fasted him. I never saw him produce any waste and he refused peas. He kept trying to jump out of the smaller area i was quarantining him in, so I allowed him back into the main tank. He lays on the bottom all the time with somewhat labored breathing. He will dart to the surface for a breath then go right back to the bottom. Sometimes he lays on his side. When offered food he may take one small piece of bloodworm then shows no interest. Before this all started he was super active patrolling his tank, making bubble nests, and eating vigorously. All other inhabitants are just fine.
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Housing:
How many gallons is your tank? 5
Does it have a filter? Yes
Does it have a heater? Yes (colbolt)
What temperature is your tank? 78°
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Does your Betta have tank mates? What kind? Yes, pygmy coradoras, ottos, neons, and some snails.

Food:
What food brand do you use? San Francisco Bay brand
Do you feed flakes or pellets? No
Freeze-dried? Frozen Bloodworms and Brine Shrimp
How often do you feed your Betta? How much? 1x a day, just enough for him to eat within 1-2 minutes

Maintenance:
Before
your Betta became ill how often did you perform a water change? 1x a week
What percentage of water did you change? 30-50%
What is the source of your water? Tap
Do you vacuum the substrate or just dip out water? Vacuum
What additives do you use? What brand of conditioner? Api water conditioner, Rift lake cichlid salt (recommended by aquarium store), flourish comprehensive supplement for plants

Water Parameters:
What are your water parameters? Please give exact numbers. If tested by pet store please get exact numbers. "Fine" or "Safe" won't help us help you. Important: Test your water before the regular water change; not after one.

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0
pH: 7.5
Hardness (GH): 30 ppm
Alkalinity (KH): 80 ppm

Symptoms and Treatment:
When did you first notice the symptoms? 1.5 weeks ago
How has your Betta’s appearance changed? No
How has your Betta’s behavior changed? He has gone from being super active to lethargic
Is your Betta still eating? Not really
Have you started treating your Betta? If so, how? No
Does your Betta have any history of being ill? No
How long have you owned your Betta? 4 months
Was he or she ill or suffering some sort of damage when purchased? No
 

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Sorry you're having these worries, it can be so stressful. He is gorgeous though!

Sometimes one of my bettas gets himself into weird positions and does weird stuff too.. but then goes back to normal.... have you tried different types of food? Mine will starve for a week before accepting anything but frozen brine shrimp. So I give it to him lol just small amounts.

Could your boy be hiding maybe? The only thing that sticks out to me in your form is there seems to be a lot of animals in a 5 gallon tank, maybe he could feel a bit overcrowded? Not sure when he/they were introduced or if you noticed anything coinciding with the timing of that at all. When they get stressed they're always more likely to get sick right. Assuming he has a spot he can really be away from everyone, and that you're turning lights off at night normally etc nothing else looks stressful from your tank that I can see.. what floating plants are they? I love the look of them.

I am new to all this, but had some problems along the way with one of my bettas and realised that my tank pH was very different to my tap pH, because of driftwood and organics etc and I learned, unfortunately the hard way, that everyone in my town who keeps - very common - fish has to add pH lowering chemicals, and minerals that increase water hardness, to new tank water with every water change. I had been doing large frequent water changes but not adding anything in. Not sure if this could be something to rule out for you or not - I always assumed the difference couldn't be that much or that significant to cause problems that the fish supplier wouldn't tell me but ahhh. It's a thing apparently.

Also, I found the filter that came with my tank was doing a pretty crappy job,
even though I understock, I have a bristlenose and heaps of snails that just constantly poo, and I upgraded that and added some carbon which I think has also made a big difference. Not sure if that's something you want to look at or not.

Also, you could maybe check your plants for any rot, sometimes close to or even under substrate, if you've accidentally left a band on or rushed to plant a bunch of something, maybe right at the very start when you were over excited and way more ignorant (me); they can leach out toxins that won't show up on your testing kit and exhaust a filter also.

Sorry if you've already thought of and ruled out these things, they're very basic of course they're just my main learnings at the moment and crazy because they're so obvious. It almost meant starting over but, with a big clean out, brand new filter, very carefully rinsing and trimming roots, removal of dead IALs (who knew you couldn't just leave them in your tank forever and ever) etc, new chemical stuff to chuck into new tank water every time (ugh) and, finally, (I THINK) got everyone healthy and settled lol phew.

Who knew fish could be so stressful hey. I hope whatever it is your boy gets better quickly.
 

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Hello, can you post a picture of the Rift lake cichlid salt? That seems like an odd thing worth looking into and I am unfamiliar with that product. I only use salt for medicinal reasons.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sorry you're having these worries, it can be so stressful. He is gorgeous though!

Sometimes one of my bettas gets himself into weird positions and does weird stuff too.. but then goes back to normal.... have you tried different types of food? Mine will starve for a week before accepting anything but frozen brine shrimp. So I give it to him lol just small amounts.

Could your boy be hiding maybe? The only thing that sticks out to me in your form is there seems to be a lot of animals in a 5 gallon tank, maybe he could feel a bit overcrowded? Not sure when he/they were introduced or if you noticed anything coinciding with the timing of that at all. When they get stressed they're always more likely to get sick right. Assuming he has a spot he can really be away from everyone, and that you're turning lights off at night normally etc nothing else looks stressful from your tank that I can see.. what floating plants are they? I love the look of them.

I am new to all this, but had some problems along the way with one of my bettas and realised that my tank pH was very different to my tap pH, because of driftwood and organics etc and I learned, unfortunately the hard way, that everyone in my town who keeps - very common - fish has to add pH lowering chemicals, and minerals that increase water hardness, to new tank water with every water change. I had been doing large frequent water changes but not adding anything in. Not sure if this could be something to rule out for you or not - I always assumed the difference couldn't be that much or that significant to cause problems that the fish supplier wouldn't tell me but ahhh. It's a thing apparently.

Also, I found the filter that came with my tank was doing a pretty crappy job,
even though I understock, I have a bristlenose and heaps of snails that just constantly poo, and I upgraded that and added some carbon which I think has also made a big difference. Not sure if that's something you want to look at or not.

Also, you could maybe check your plants for any rot, sometimes close to or even under substrate, if you've accidentally left a band on or rushed to plant a bunch of something, maybe right at the very start when you were over excited and way more ignorant (me); they can leach out toxins that won't show up on your testing kit and exhaust a filter also.

Sorry if you've already thought of and ruled out these things, they're very basic of course they're just my main learnings at the moment and crazy because they're so obvious. It almost meant starting over but, with a big clean out, brand new filter, very carefully rinsing and trimming roots, removal of dead IALs (who knew you couldn't just leave them in your tank forever and ever) etc, new chemical stuff to chuck into new tank water every time (ugh) and, finally, (I THINK) got everyone healthy and settled lol phew.

Who knew fish could be so stressful hey. I hope whatever it is your boy gets better quickly.
Thanks for the thoughts. The filter has been modified to handle a larger load of fish in the tank. This is my smallest aquarium. Everyone has been together for some time and his behavior changed well after they were introduced. He has a little cave in the backside created by the Mumbai wood that only he goes into. It makes me sad that he's not his normal spunky self. He just seems miserable. I'm taking a water sample into the aquarium store today to see if they catch something I missed....I have a 24/7 light that mimics a 24/7 natural light cycle.

The floating plant is duckweed. I also love the way it looks. It can be problematic though as it grows like crazy!! It's almost impossible to get rid of too if you end up deciding you don't want it anymore.
 

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RusselltheShihTzu
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As asked by x skully x, why are you using Rift Lake Cichlid Salt instead of Aquarium Salt? How much? What are your water parameters before adding the salt?

His position on the bottom of the tank only happens when there is something drastically wrong. Betta do not stay on their side in a somewhat curled position for any other reason. Test Nitrates again making sure to shake the bottles for time directed.

About the only tank mates suitable for a Betta in a five gallon are shrimp or snails. Anything else can be extremely stressful and stress reduces the immune system and leave Betta open to illness. The first thing I would do is remove everything to one of your larger tanks to reduce stress.

Try to catch him so you can get a photo from directly above.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the thoughts...

The chiclid salt is something I have used in all of my aquariums for the last ten years as they were recommended by the aquarium store I use. They are great for adding to the water in my area.

He ate the shrimp, so they aren't good tank mates for him. Lol.... Some bettas do ok with them though. He has been happy, healthy and peaceful with all his current tank mates since I got him four months ago.... He does swim around some, but not to the extent he was. I had tried putting him alone, but it didn't change his behavior. It seems to be something specifically wrong with him as again no one else is having issues.

I triple checked the nitrates and they are 0. I'm taking a sample of water into the fish store today to see if they catch something I missed....

Here is a photo from above. He is not bloated like he has been.
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Hello, can you post a picture of the Rift lake cichlid salt? That seems like an odd thing worth looking into and I am unfamiliar with that product. I only use salt for medicinal reasons.
Hello, can you post a picture of the Rift lake cichlid salt? That seems like an odd thing worth looking into and I am unfamiliar with that product. I only use salt for medicinal reasons.
 

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Registered
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Thanks for the thoughts. The filter has been modified to handle a larger load of fish in the tank. This is my smallest aquarium. Everyone has been together for some time and his behavior changed well after they were introduced. He has a little cave in the backside created by the Mumbai wood that only he goes into. It makes me sad that he's not his normal spunky self. He just seems miserable. I'm taking a water sample into the aquarium store today to see if they catch something I missed....I have a 24/7 light that mimics a 24/7 natural light cycle.

The floating plant is duckweed. I also love the way it looks. It can be problematic though as it grows like crazy!! It's almost impossible to get rid of too if you end up deciding you don't want it anymore.
Sounds like you are going above and beyond to create a happy and healthy environment. Good idea having an extra pair of eyes check out the water... I really hope he perks up soon for you! Keep us updated, especially if you figure out what could have been the cause.

Ahh haha have heard that about duckweed, it's so pretty though!
 

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Use treatment with catappa leaves or indian almond. It will be help your problem, catappa leaves can stable Ph in water, anti fungi, and make your water feels like real habbit betta. Another effect from catappa leaves can make your betta more colourfull and make it really fast mutation colour for betta.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Use treatment with catappa leaves or indian almond. It will be help your problem, catappa leaves can stable Ph in water, anti fungi, and make your water feels like real habbit betta. Another effect from catappa leaves can make your betta more colourfull and make it really fast mutation colour for betta.
Thanks! Never thought of that...
 
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