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15 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How many gallons is your tank? 5 gallons
Does it have a filter? Yes
Does it have a heater? Yes
What temperature is your tank? 81˚
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Does your Betta have tank mates? What kind? No

What food brand do you use? Omega One (Betta Buffet Flakes)
Do you feed flakes or pellets? flakes
Freeze-dried? never
How often do you feed your Betta? How much? Once a day in the morning; 3-4 small pieces

Before your Betta became ill how often did you perform a water change? Once a week
What percentage of water did you change? 50%
What is the source of your water? Tap water
Do you vacuum the substrate or just dip out water? Vacuum
What additives do you use? What brand of conditioner? Seachem Prime

Water Parameters: What are your water parameters?
Ammonia: API Test kit seems to place it at around 0.25 to 0.50ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
pH: 6.8
Hardness (GH): 0
Alkalinity (KH): 0

Symptoms and Treatment:
When did you first notice the symptoms? 2 days ago
How has your Betta’s appearance changed? He has something white on the right side of his head and white stringy-like film on his body near his rear fins. It also looks like there's a tiny bump underneath the white spot on his head.
How has your Betta’s behavior changed? My Betta has become very lethargic and today is the first day he doesn't have an appetite. While he usually rests at the surface of the water and is very responsive to stimuli, he now lays at the bottom of the tank all day and night and doesn't respond at all to stimuli.
Is your Betta still eating? No; today is the first day he does not have an appetite. (He ate yesterday though).
Have you started treating your Betta? If so, how? I started treating my Betta two days ago once I noticed he was becoming more lethargic. On Monday, yesterday, and today, I have been doing 50% water changes to get the ammonia down. Yesterday I also added about half a teaspoon's worth of aquarium salt (which I first dissolved in some of his tank water in a separate container).
Does your Betta have any history of being ill? Yes; January 2020: my Betta had bad fin rot and I was overfeeding him, February 2020: my Betta was very constipated (had stringy poop hanging out of him for days), March 2020: my Betta's right eyeball looked as though it had been injured but that went away with time & water changes
How long have you owned your Betta? 11 months (it'll be a year on September 14)
Was he or she ill or suffering some sort of damage when purchased? No

My suspicion is that my Betta injured himself while flaring about a week ago. He rarely ever flares and ever since that day he's been slowly becoming less active. In the days leading up to him being very lethargic, my Betta had also started blowing out more bubbles than usual through his gills (which I haven't seen him do before), and out of his mouth. Any advice anyone can give me would be much appreciated! I've also attached a few photos.


15 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
First thing I can suggest is to lower the temp of the water slightly. (especially with ammonia in the water. Are your temps in the room running higher with the extra heat? Maybe get a cheap heater that only goes up to 78 degrees. If you have ammonia in the water and your temperatures are higher it becomes even more lethal to them. Along with also having harder water makes it even worse. I see that your pH is 6.8 so that is helping but there is still lethal ammonia in the tank. So while some fish may show no signs of distress at low levels of ammonia, if they have harder water and or the temp of the water is higher it becomes more dangerous. If you could do another water change of 50% and make the water slightly cooler, then wait another few hours and do another water change and again bring the temp down to closer to 78 the effects of the ammonia that's present in the water won't be as toxic to him. I would complete all these water changes within the next 24-36 hours if possible.

Without disclosing where you live if it's somewhere that is in a warmer climate and how cool you keep your house you may be able to get rid of the heater (only if house temp is on the warmer side). I just pulled all of my heater last week and I'll probably leave them out for a month or so. At night when the house is cooler I lay a towel over my tanks to keep their tank water warmer.

The other thing that sticks out to me is you have zero 0 nitrates which means there's no 'good bacteria' to eat the ammonia up. If you had him in the same tank this whole time there should have been at least a little bit (around 5). Have you changed tanks, or upgraded tanks? You're essentially going through a mini cycle or your cycle crashed for some reason. Either way it can all be fixed. I would suggest small daily water changes of about 1 gallon.

Do you have any live plants? If you get him some live plants that can float in his tank (maybe anubias) he will probably rest on those towards the top of the tank. Anubias can be attached with a suction cup on the wall of the tank and the leaves rest nicely on the surface. A great floating plant is water sprite or water wysteria that can just be floated and grows really fast and will also give him something to rest on toward the top of the tank

P.S. I'm still new to this so all this is from my learning experiences and research. Maybe someone more knowledgeable can suggest something else
Hi there! Thank you so much for your response. I turned his tank heater down a little bit to get the temperature to 78 degrees. I think I should hold off on the next water change until tomorrow, since I already did a 50% change today and I don't want to cause too much disruption for him.
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