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42 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm new to fish and somewhat anal and want to do everything "right". So my 5 gallon tank is busy doing it's fishless cycle - going verrrrrryyyyy sloooooowwwwwlly BTW - and in the meantime, I found a little blue Half Moon (or so the sticker said) with pretty silver fins at Petco that seemed healthy and lively. He followed me as I looked over his little cup - although given its size I'm not sure there was much else he could do - and seemed very active and personable. So I got a 2.5 gallon keeper and another heater and brought him home. I think I acclimated him correctly and the first night he was very active and checked out every inch of his tank. This was Monday. He spent the next 4 days mostly hiding either in his plant or under the little rock bridge I built for him. He would come out to patrol the tank for a couple of laps, get some air, then go back to one of those two places. When he does swim, he seems fine - swims straight, goes up and down in what appears a normal fish fashion, no darting or jerking, not frantic, not brushing up against stuff - just swimming around like a little fish. He hasn't eaten a thing that I can tell but I guess that's not all that unusual. Yesterday he finally seemed a little more social, was patroling his tank a bit more and flared when I held up a mirror

His stats:
2.5 gallon, will be 5 gallon when it's cycled
Gravel bottom, One silk plant, smooth rock bridge
Heated, 80 degrees
No filter or airstones
Lives alone

I've offered Omega One Betta Buffet pellets, 2 pellets twice a day. So far he has declined. I got some freeze dried shrimp and crumbled one up and sprinkled in. Unimpressed.
Petco is pretty much my only option. I looked at their frozen food but it seemed to have no nutritional value whatsoever.


Setup tank on Monday with Aquasafe plus and small dose of AQ salt because I figured he was a little stressed from life in the cup. Wednesday, did about 50% change, mostly because I was worried about him. Today, Saturday, did a 100% change and added 1 tsp / gallon AQ salt + Aquasafe.

Water Parameters:
Tested the water before I changed it this morning, Saturday.
Ammonia - .25
Nitrites - 0
Nitrates - 0

Symptoms and Treatment.
I think he's gotten a little darker on his head with kind of a red hue to it. Almost like it's bruised. This may just be his color and I didn't notice during all that time he was hiding from me. Scales don't seem raised. I've checked for velvet with the flashlight (I'm imagining every possible disease at this point) and he seems somewhat iridescent but, he's a fish, aren't they kinda like that?
Yesterday I was looking him over and noticed some red streaks on his anal fin and this morning another streak on his tail. He also has a couple tiny pin holes, one in his dorsal fin and another on a pectoral.

Here is Beto:

This is how he spends a lot of his time:

This shows the darker color on his head:

And these are the red streaks - does this look like fin rot or is he just snagging himself on something in his tank?

If fin rot, is treating with the AQ salt and daily water changes the best plan of attack at this point?

How long before I should start panicking about his not eating?

180 Posts
I can't see any of your pictures. And bettas can go 3 weeks to a month with out eating. My betta refused to eat pellets for 3 weeks so I got flakes and he gobbles them up. Maybe try them just don't feed too much it can cause bloating. Also my sis are a good treat. If I could see your pics I could help with that. But from your description sounds like he got caught or if the ends look frayed it could be the start of fin rot or he could be stressed and the aq salt is good for fin rot and stress. Use meds as a last resort. I had a similar problem and a little API stress coat plus works wonders! I saw an immediate change in my betta

2,448 Posts
Welcome from a fellow Virginian! You've got a pretty boy there. He looks a little sick but it is curable. First for your regular maintenance you shouldn't add AQ salt for normal water changes. Only use it when needed to fight infection. That being said, I think you are in need of it right now. The redness on the edge of his fins is finrot (the red in the center is probably caused by the ammonia present in the water). Typical treatment is 5 mL/gal AQ salt and daily water changes (which you have been doing). Keep doing this until you see regrowth. If you're not seeing any healing in another 4-5 days you should think about antibiotics. Keep us updated!
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