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Jefferson is Sick!!

391 Views 3 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  Pataflafla
Hello Betta Fish Forums!
My Betta Fish Jefferson is either extremely depressed or relaxed, or has something wrong with him.
He has been sitting under his old bubble nest all day, i cant tell if he's rebuilding it or just floating there. He moves if i tap on the glass or the water, but this is very out of character (though i have never actually witnessed him build a bubble nest before, and this may be the normal process).
Your Help is very much appreciated, Thanks a lot for taking the time to read this.

2.5 Gallon Tank
About 78 Degree Water
No Filtration
No Air Stone (would a betta benefit from an airstone?)
Tank is Heated
Tank has one Male Betta and One Apple Snail (Snail was in tank before Betta was introduced, and the two have not had problems)

Alternates between Hikari Betta Bio-Gold pellets (Main Ingredient Wheat Flour, Protein: 38%) and Omega One Betta Buffet Flakes (Main Ingredient is a Seafood Mix, Protein: 43%).
Just introduced the flakes into the routine however, and he is still very hesitant to eat them.
Fed once a day at night.

Water Changes about once a month.
Change roughly 85% of water.
(I suspect that the problem is stemming from something in this category, as his water change two days ago is the only major change in his routine that has occurred)
Add Top Fin Betta Water Conditioner to water before adding to tank.

Water Parameters:
I don’t have any water testing tools. Sorry I can’t give more info, as this would probably be very helpful.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
His eyes seem different, maybe puffier. Could be a little hypochondriasis on my part though.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
This is why I’m most concerned. He has been floating under his old bubble nest all day and only moves when I prompt him.
When did you start noticing the symptoms?
Just today, this morning.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
I added in a little more of the water conditioner that is supposed to remove water impurities and “Protect against harmful ammonia.”
Does your fish have any history of being ill?
Jefferson has been a very happy healthy fish up to this point.
How old is your fish (approximately)?
I have had him for about six months, ever since he was about the size of my last pinky knuckle (about 7/8 of an inch, including fins).

This is what he has been doing all day:


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The issue is probably heavy ammonia in the tank. snails produce quite a lot.

In a 2.5 gallon, it's best to be doing 1 50% and 1 100% weekly to keep ammonia down. He could be developing ammonia burns and be more resistant to activity due to discomfort.

think about how it is to get something like windex in an open cut. A betta is living in that basically when the ammonia is let to get too concentrated.

Try doing 2 100% changes this week and next week to see if that improves his behavior any. even if you're water conditioner says it gets rid of ammonia, it really doesn't. It may convert it to a less harmful form, but nothing gets rid of ammonia other than live plants, water changes, and beneficial bacteria (Plants and bacteria need to be in great quantity, so not the most ideal method for smaller tanks).

Also, try getting him onto a more protein rich food that isn't a flake. Flakes are messy and tend to cause bloating and constipation issues. Topfin pellets (Generic at Petsmart) usually are at around 45% protein. New Life Spectrum is a good pellet food too. You'll want to mix in more protein to the diet as well. Blood worms, krill, and spirulina brine shrimp are good for this too as a treat or meal replacement.
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Thanks for the quick response!

I'll get a water change in asap, and im heading to petsmart right now (they are waaay better than petco here).
Gunna get some new pellets, and one of those moss balls.
How bout an airstone? would that be beneficial at all?
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