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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey, guys, so I'm having a huge crisis. All this is explained down below, but it might be confusing (ask me as many questions as you need, I want this figured out and I've got time, now). I've had several fish die over these past few days. First, it was the rasboras. Then, Banana Fish died. I bought some guppies to replace him, and a new betta. All of which also died. And now Phaistos is looking pretty fatal. I really don't want another of my little guys to die, so I'm trying to figure something out. All I can think is that it has something to do with the community tanks at the pet shop I bought the new fish from. But here's the details:

Housing
What size is your tank? This is the 20 gallon, but another fish was affected in a brand new 2.5
What temperature is your tank? The 20 gallon sits at 79 the 2.5 was 78
Does your tank have a filter? the 20 gallon, yes 2.5 no. It had only been set up for about two days
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? In the 20, I had the three bettas, and then a snail, and I've had the rasboras and then guppies.

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? They get several different brands of foods, pellets and flakes.
How often do you feed your betta fish? Twice a day

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? I get them at least once a week, but I'll admit my smaller, midweek changes have been lacking since I was working two jobs.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? I just did a good 70% change at the end of last week. Normally, they get about halfway changes. I did a thorough gravel vacuuming and cleaned all the decorations and the glass and everything
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Prime

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? I haven't had the chance, but I intend to tomorrow

Ammonia:
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? They don't change. I just come home to dead fish. This time, it's Phaistos, and he isn't dead yet. He looks perfectly colorful. He isn't clamped. He isn't doing much of anything, though.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? He's lethargic, and seems almost dizzy when I try to get him to move.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Banana Fish died two days ago. He didn't display any symptoms, he was eating fine, he was chasing the rasboras, he was just himself. Then, I came home from KFC and he was just dead. Phaistos isn't dead, yet. He was fine when I got home from work today at about eight. But now, he's lying on the bottom of the tank and he won't be roused.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I'm about to move him into different water. There's another betta I have to move in the tank, as well.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Banana Fish had to be in ES for weeks upon weeks when I bought him. It had been several weeks since he had used any in his water, and he had been swimming perfectly fine. He didn't seem sick before, and Phaistos has always been healthy and particularly spirited.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Banana Fish was probably about or just under a year old when he died, but I would guess Phaistos is younger, because he was smaller when I bought him. There's also a brand new, unnamed guy who passed last night in the 2.5 gallon. He was tiny, but not a baby. Probably four months old or so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Banana Fish, the rasboras, and the guppies died in the twenty. The new betta was in the 2.5 and Phaistos is just about to come out of the 20. Erasmos is, as well, but he doesn't seem ill, yet.
 

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do you use any chemicals like lysol or anything like that - near the tank?
I would think in order to have a mass death like that something has to be wrong with the water somewhere...??
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
No, not near the tank. Phaistos seems to be doing better in the fresh water, though, so I think I'll do another change in the tank. The other betta seems fine, but like I said, they all seem fine until I look over and they're dead. :/ The snail seems completely oblivious to everything happening. But it always looks the same.
 

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Sounds dumb for me to ask, but were you taking chlorine out of the water? What brand did you use? Some are better than others.. Also, were you cleaning the water each time you added fish (after the ones died in it?) If you're adding new fish to water that fish have died in, you might just be sendung them to their doom.. Disregard this if you added de-chlorinator and are changing the water.

I agree though, something is going on with the chemistry of the water. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yes, I did both of those. No problem about the asking. I use Seachem Prime to dechlorinate.

And an update- Phaistos died anyway. I'm incredibly sad, because he looked like he was better when I put him in totally new water. I'm not sure what to do. I don't want the last betta who was living there to die. :c If anyone has any ideas, I'd be glad to hear them.
 

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Id clean everything out new filter cartridge everything then refill it and let it run for like a week before putting any fish in there also get your water tested for ammonia and nitrites. You should probably let your 20 gallon cycle. The 2.5 get a little filter I have a cascade 20 in my 2.7 and it works great. Clean everything refill add prime let it run for a week and try again in that tank
 

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A similar thing happened in my tank, it was very dirty so I also did a 70% change, I unbalanced my water when I did it and a LOT of my fish died, I think the best solution would be to not add any more fish for a week or even two, so the tank has a chance to get back to normal and cycle itself a little, then test your water before adding any more fish in and if you still aren't sure try putting some really hardy fish in, I find lemon tetra's are very hardy fish, they were some of the only fish that survived my tank unbalancing.
Hope this helped
 

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I wonder if having everything sterile is making the water deplete in nutrients? My Lakitu died of an osmosis something after I added too many new things to the tank at once (new gravel, shrimp, live plants and decorations)..I think maybe you should leave your tanks alone set-up for a week or so and test the water .

I don't think a filter is necessary in tanks smaller than 5g because they won't be able to hold a cycle and I heard water parameters are more delicate then.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That might be it. It's been about a week and a half since I did the big water change, though. I would imagine that would happen quicker? Idk, just wondering.

I know it might matter or might not, but Phaistos looked way different than he did last night when I actually got up and looked at his little body. For one, his belly turned orange. I guess I didn't notice it on BF because he's already yellow. And two, his tail looks awful. The actual fin between the rays looks like it dissolved and it's sitting on the bottom of the cup. It's even still pink and everything. I know when BF died, he was in the tank, so I didn't notice that the tail did that. I just saw that it was shredded, but I blamed the rasboras or his own chasing.

Right now, I have the whole tank off so I can look for anything inside that might be the culprit. The snail might be dead, too. It was on the wall when I went to see Phaistos, but after my shower, it was closed up and it was also orange. I'm wondering if there's maybe a fungus involved, if my fish are turning orange? I don't like it.

Also, right now, Erasmos is showing the same signs Phaistos was before he died. I can try and do something, but I don't know what to do. I'm going to a different pet store in Etown and bringing a few things with me to see if anyone can help me figure it out looking at the fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I took Erasmos out of the water. His entire left side turned black. Bad sign, I assume. :/

Maybe he turned black but the others didn't because he was in the water longer? He's the last one left. And maybe the snail.
 

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I think you should let it sit a while with vaccumed gravel and cycle it. If its a bacteria or fungus it will die with out fish. Just let it sit running for a few weeks. I had the same problem in my 40 gallon I cleaned everything and let it re cycle and when it was done started with some small fish to make sure it was okay
 

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Did you sterilize between new fish? I use vinegar and hot water, rinsed well afterwards with water... especially after an unexplained death. Anything contaminated could've crossed between BOTH tanks... nets, siphons, cups, even your hands touching the contaminated water and the other tank's water.

also I see you said you had (pluralized) bettas in your 20? were they together? divided? different times? Just makin' sure :)


Black usually says rot, dying matter, or burns.
 

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depends how long it took to take the host, for that if it were a blue and it has been noted there has been non-blues who got it, just it seems to reoccur in blues more :) (been there done that three blues...) My one blue had the yellow/orange starting which is triggered by large decaying matter, such as us when we have a wound and it goes yellow around the edges... may not be an infection, but it's the weakening of tissue around dead matter :)

You have pics of the others?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yes it was divided into 3. 5 left, 10 center, 5 right.

I didn't sterilize between uses, but I haven't had to use anything on another tank, yet. Except the 2.5, and that betta was brand new. I just used to net to scoop out his dead body. He might have died of shock, though... Maybe?

I'm 99% sure Erasmos is going to die. And if he doesn't pass within a few hours, I'm putting him down. Poor guy is on his last leg, so to speak. :c I think I'll just clean everything out, use bleach and everything, and then start over with new filter media and everything and let it re-cycle. I just wish I knew what it was that killed my fish and if there's anything I can do to prevent it from happening again. I don't like the band-aid thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Sorry, I always miss new replies. :/

He's purple. Phaistos is a pink dragon-scale. I've seen that other thread, I remember it first starting out months ago. I just haven't seen anything like it at my house, yet. My two blue bettas are in different tanks and they're just fine.
 

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I've had a "wimpy immune system" betta who did not do well to slightest of changes, and he died despite everything :lol: it IS very possible and not unheard of :)

Has anyone used air freshners in this area? you have a younger sibling (toys, and other stuff being in the water, hands being in the water etc)? new paint? carpet cleaning...?

Yeah purples don't seem to carry it xD So says Shiloh the... wow 2 and a half years old.... betta in my 20 gallon xDD My three blues died from it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I live with my dad, no siblings. The tank is in my bedroom, and air fresheners give me headaches. What with my own health issues, the air stays pretty fresh and... scentless, if that makes sense. I mean... I only use hair products in the bathroom, if ever.

Right. I won't be adding fish anytime soon, anyway. Thanks, guys.

And sorry if I seem crabby. I want my fish not to die, I'm not mad at any one of you guys. :c
 
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