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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone,
My Capernicus has been getting progressively less happy, and I'm not sure what's going on.

Size: 1.25 gallon (Divided 2.5 gallon with another betta)
Filter: no
ph: Not sure
Water Changes: 100% every week
Heater: Yes
Temperature: 80 degrees Fahrenheit
Tankmates: None


So, it's been 6 days since I bought this 2.5 gallon tanks for the boys. and I set up the heater in there and got the thermometers. The temp has been staying between 76-80. My heater is once of those disc shaped ones that have no setting.

Cap looked absolutely wonderful the first day I put him in there. All his fins were flowy and not clamped at all. If anything they were overlapping a little.
The third day, I noticed that his tail fin was cardboard in appearance, not flowy.. just bendy. I did a 100% water change and he seemed much worse off for the hour afterwards. But he perked up eventually.

But today, he's been asleep on his betta bed leaf all morning. When I turn on his tank light he'll wake up and swim over and follow my finger like normal, but I was shocked to see how clamped up his fins are!!

Cupidhead, his tank mate (on the other side of the divider) is not having any fin clamping issues, which would leave me to believe that the water is okay.

If anyone has any ideas of what I could do to help him I'd love to hear. I love my Cap very much =(


Okay so the first picture is him the first day in the new tank, and the rest are from today.
 

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you have two fish in a divided 2.5 gallon? I'd say that could be why he is stressed. That isn't a lot of space for two fish. I usually recommend 2.5 minimum per fish. If you have a divided tank with two males it is also good to have some plants or a cave next to the divider so they can get away from each other. Betta males sometimes don't like being able to see other males all the time and will constantly feel threatened. I would try to get another 2.5 gallon tank and another heater and set them up by themselves.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thankyou for your reply,

I should clarify that the divider is black and they cannot see each other at all. I know that it's not a lot but I cannot afford a bigger one right now. When I can, believe me I will. This tank is much bigger than the ones I had them in.. I know it's not ideal.. But it's better than tiny bowl .. They each have a few fake plants and rocks on the bottom. I don't leave the light on very much..

So the clamping is caused by stress?
 

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Yes clamping is usually from stress. It can be stress from many different situations though. Is the black divider shiny? Does your fish flare at himself at it? I'm out of ideas after that unless you test your tap water and make sure there is nothing in there that could be causing stress. My tap water has ammonia in it (not much, but it is there) so I have to treat it with Prime liquid before I can add it to the tanks. Just a thought. Hope you can figure it out.

Also, I'm not sure what tank you have and where you got it, but at my store a 5 gallon All-Glass tank is only 1$ more than a 2.5 gallon. So it is just a thought that maybe if you come by some extra money you could upgrade them. 1.25 gallons per fish is still really tiny even if it is "better than what they had before" it's still not ideal. It also could be why he's clamped. He just doesn't have room.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you very much for the ideas and information. He has never flared much at his reflection. The divider isn't shiny. I will test the water today. We have well water, so who knows!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I wanted to update this.. It's been a couple days.

Cap has the whole 2.5 gallons to himself. I've kept the heater in there, so it's been fairly steady between 76-82.
The day that I took Cupid out and gave cap free roam of the place.. well the next day he spent the entire day up on his leaf bed. Thursday morning, before I went to work, I turned on his tank light and he came over to say hi to me like always.. But he was obviously very determined to let me know that something was amuck. He was very pointedly back and forth, as if pointing to his back fin.. where I saw the clumps of white. Then, as if swimming back and forth slow wasn't obvious enough.. he suddenly stopped. Turned to face me head on.. then sprinted and slammed himself head first into the tank wall infront of my face.
It made me late for work, but I changed his water right then.
I changed it again this morning after I went out to the store and bought API stress coat. I used that instead of the water conditioner I'd been using, and when I got home from work this evening he wasn't snoozing on his leaf like he had been for the last few days, and greeted me happily!
But.. His fins are just as clamped as ever..

Does anyone have any more suggestions of how to make Cap happy?

This all started when I moved him from his 3/4 gallon (maybe it's 1 gallon..) plastic bowl to this tank.
Is it possible that my fish just hates this tank and wants to be back in his little, unheated bowl?
 

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He looks pretty bloated to me. How much/how often do you feed him?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I had never known exactly what a bloated fish looked like.. But now I see what you mean. I'm guilty. I was worried that he would get all weak on me. But not eating isn't his problem. Okay.. Fasting for a couple days. Will do.
 

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He's not bloated.. a rounded tummy is a good tummy, and it's not extreme.

Obvious question and concern is his tail.. did he happen to get chewed up by another fish? If not.. then I am wanting to suspect he had/has fin rot.. as that is too close to the body for him to of chewed off himself.

Looking closely at your pictures I can see some possible new growth at the edges.. so that is something to keep an eye on.

As for his behavior.. he seems fine in the videos.. he may of just been stressed about the move. Maybe you didn't acclimate him to the new chemistry just right for him.. keep an eye on him and let us know if he starts to gasp at the surface, loses color, stops eating.

As for his clamping.. give him some time, along with some tall plants (avoid any more of the one green one in the video, those are terrible tail splitters).. he may become more relaxed when he feels more secure- going from a smaller tank to a larger tank can be stressful on some bettas. Some even prefer to be in a 1 gallon rather then anything larger. So I would say give him more tall plants to hide in and some time to adjust.. keep an eye on him though.

Feeding twice a day is ideal, small amounts of high quality foods is ideal. You can fast him if you wish, but I see no reason to based off of the videos. I have boys with larger bellies who are very stocky in body. I say his belly is just the right size for a healthy fish.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Myates,
Thankyou very much for your reply =)

Actually is it possible that he had a little bit nibbled by his tank-mate, I noticed that there is a small gap at the bottom of the divider that could potentially allow that to happen, though I didn't personally witness it.

I didn't even think about taller plants and more conciliating things, thank you so much, I will go buy him more today.

I'm trying to nurse him back as much as possible in this upcoming week, because at the end I'm going on a 12 hour car ride and I'm taking all my fishies with me! Off topic, but I did call the Dept of animal health/importation services at the Montreal/US border and the man said they have no restrictions on bringing Bettas into the country.


Anyways, here's a pic of him this morning. I think I see some growth at the top of his tail.. maybe. or maybe the bottom part of his tail has just fallen off and all that's left sticking out is the top part..
I guess it's possible that he has fin rot.. I'll review the symptoms and treatments off that sticky post.

Again, thankyou so much for the help! *hugs*
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hi! I just wanted to check in.. Cap is doing fabulous! He's himself again and his fins are no longer clamped. I wanted to thank you so much for all the advice <3
 
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