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Hi guys, So I recently started a planted aquarium, and just the other day added two female bettas (yes, I realize now that only 2 females together is a controversial topic). When I first brought the girls home, they had a little bit of a tussle, but after I split them up they retreated to their separate sides of the tank and seemed to be doing fine.
In the 3 days since, I've noticed that one of the females has been chasing the less aggressive girl at times (we call the less aggressive one Brittany), and Brittany has been acting steadily more lethargic over that time. I also think she may be constipated, as she seems to have less appetite and had a stringy, white-ish poop today. I've been fasting them both for the last 24 hours, hoping this might help. I just recently took the more dominant girl (she goes by many names, but let's call her Sheryl for now) out of the tank, in the hopes that Brittany might do better without her (I know it seems to be standard practice to remove the sick fish, but I didn't want to cause any more stress).
A little more info: they're in a 10 gallon tank, with 3 ghost shrimp, 1 small snail, and lots of plants- a large anubias, 6 marimo moss balls, some weeping moss, and a little bit of grass (helanthium). There is also a heather (kept around 78-80), and a filter (on its lowest setting).
I've read that adding a third betta may help, but I'm worried that the 2 would then gang up on Brittany. I also hate the idea of returning either, but if it's that or death, of course I will.
I guess my question is: Is it stress causing her to feel unwell, or could she be sick which is leading her to be bullied? What should I do in this situation? As of now, Sheryl is in a small tank (half gallon or gallon), so I don't want to leave her there any longer than absolutely necessary.
Thank you so much if you've read this far, any advice would be appreciated.
 

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I'm not sure if anyone has read this, but thought I would provide an update. After keeping the aggressive girl separate for the night and morning, Brittany seemed almost back to herself. I decided to try a third fish in the tank, and I got a surprise... The new girl seems to be the more dominant. While there hasn't been any fighting or nipping, there has been some flaring at each other, and the previously aggressive fish backs down every time. They've been together for the last 5 hours or so, and Brittany has remained relatively unbothered by either, has been swimming again and even ate a bloodworm today. I'm going to keep a close eye on them, but hopefully things stay on track now!
 
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