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506 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My boy Fawkes seems to be obsessed with fighting his reflection in the back of the tank to the point where he’s exhausted himself. He thinks it’s another male! I turned off the lights in his tank and changed out his background from a glossy one that was taped on to a more matte static cling one. Otherwise I’m at a loss as to what to do.


How many gallons is your tank? 2.5 Mini Bow
Does it have a filter? Yes
Does it have a heater? Yes
What temperature is your tank? 80F
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? No
Does your Betta have tank mates? What kind? No. He’s by himself.

What food brand do you use? Fluval Bug Bites
Do you feed flakes or pellets? Pellets
Freeze-dried? Occasionally as a treat but use live and frozen more often
How often do you feed your Betta? How much? I feed twice a day. Once in the morning and again in the evening. Portions are roughly the size of a pea (never an actual pea though).

Before your Betta became ill how often did you perform a water change? I just did a water change for the first time since I got him a week prior.
What percentage of water did you change? 25%
What is the source of your water? Tap water that I treated with Betta Plus.
Do you vacuum the substrate or just dip out water? My tank comes with a built in siphon.
What additives do you use other than conditioner? What brand of conditioner? Betta Plus, Prime (switching over to this now) and Stability

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: Somewhere between 0-.25ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 0ppm
pH: 7.6
Hardness (GH): unknown
Alkalinity (KH): unknown

Symptoms and Treatment:
When did you first notice the symptoms? After the first water change
How has your Betta’s appearance changed? No
How has your Betta’s behavior changed? Yes. Obsessed with reflection, constant flaring, labored breathing. Seems exhausted.
Is your Betta still eating? A little bit.
Have you started treating your Betta? If so, how? I turned out his tank lights and changed out the background to a (hopefully) less reflective one.
Does your Betta have any history of being ill? No
How long have you owned your Betta? Nearly 2 weeks. I bought him on the 1st.
Was he or she ill or suffering some sort of damage when purchased? No

Akila and Atticus <3
572 Posts
I think the glossy background may be causing this. The background shouldn't be reflective, but the light might be causing this too. Maybe remove the glossy background and replace it with matte cardstock, or white printer paper. Just tape it there, and see if it improves.
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