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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Sorry if this post is too long. I just want to explain everything so I can get a clear response.

What size is your tank? 1 gallon, hexagonal
What temperature is your tank? 23 degrees C
Does your tank have a filter? Yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? We have an airstone/light, but I did not place it in the tank because I read betta do not like bubbles. So it is resting on the top to provide light.
Is your tank heated? No.
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? None.

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? BettaMin from Tetra
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2 times a day, usually around 6 flakes each time.

How often do you perform a water change? Haven't yet. But planning on once a week.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? I was planning on 50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? NutraFin Betta Plus

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? No.

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? No.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? It stays at the very top of the tank all the time.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Yesterday morning.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Unknown.
How old is your fish (approximately)? I presume it was just bought from a pet store, but age is unknown.

Hello everyone, on the 17th, my parents went to a wedding and came back with a veil tail betta, presumably male (the married couple had bettas as centerpieces for each table in very small bowls, which I find to be extremely cruel).

We were not prepared for a new fish at all. My parents presumed that the betta could live in that small bowl without a filter or anything. After a bit of research, my sister and I demanded our father to bring home the necessary items to care for the fish (heater, filter, food, etc).

The next day, on the 18th, my father brought home a 1 gallon hexagonal tank set, called the "Bubbling LED Kit" from Tetra (obviously my sister and I were upset, as we knew this tank was too small. We were originally planning on using a 10 gallon tank we already had). The kit came with the 1 gal. tank, a lid, 3 LED airstone, a filter and a cartridge, an air pump, tubing, and a connector valve. We read that bettas do not like bubbles, so we did not put the airstone/light in the tank. At the moment, it is on top of the tank, so the light shines down. The tank as pebbles in it, and one plant. We treated the water with the conditioner specifically for bettas, waited about 30 minutes, and carefully placed him in the water. Because of the unexpectedness, the tank was not cycled, and this is, what I assume, is the problem.

Anyway, the problem. Yesterday morning, I noticed he stayed on a leaf on the top of the tank, whenever he moved, it was never downwards, but always at the very top. The day we put him in, he often swam around the bottom. When we feed him, he seems eager, and he also seems to be kind of creating a bubble nest, I think. He seems perfectly healthy, but he just stays at the top. The water is murky, probably because it's now cycling.

I'm really worried that the cycling will affect him, so I was planning on doing a 50% water change today. I was wondering if this was a good idea, or if I should do something else to help him.

I'm also now wondering if he is just attracted to the light. Because he seems to rest directly under it. Is the water too cold? I know they usually live in waters 24-27 degrees C, but I didn't think that only one degree would affect him so drastically. Also, should I put the airstone/light in the tank where it's supposed to be? If so, how many bubbles would disturb him? Should I buy a heater asap? When I change the water, do I need to put 1 gallon worth of the conditioner in the water once again?

Sorry if these are too many obvious questions, I'm just a really huge newbie, and I don't want my fish to suffer from something that can be prevented easily.

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He may be either in osmotic shock or chemistry shock, cold, swimbladder stressed and/or combo of several different things.

IMO/E-the nitrogen cycle or lack of has nothing to do with what is going on with him right now.

You may or may not need a heater-your goal is to maintain a somewhat stable temp in the 76-80F range.

What I would recommend-turn off the filter, make a 50% water only change using double dose of the dechlorinator. Then lower the water level by half-keeping him in the 1gal-light and filter off for now. If you have access to any tannins from either IAL or if you have a Oak tree in your yard-collect naturally dried and fallen from the tree oak leaves-Add 2 to his half full 1gal tank and about 20 crushed to a 1gal jug of dechlorinated water and allow to steep-Use this tannin stained water for every other day 25% water changes for 5 days. On day 6 start 25% water change but add back 50% over the next 3 days. Provided that he has improved-turn on the filter and see how he reacts.

Nutrition is really important-if you have access to live mosquito larva-offer several 2-3 times a day.

IMO/E-by supporting the immune response you allow the fish to heal itself-The tannins contain antibacterial/fungal properties and help ease stress-the added protein from a more natural food source of the mosquito larva can work wonders on a stressed Betta.

Good luck

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don't really have access to tannin, or mosquito larva. I do agree that stress could be a factor, as he seems to be really timid. I tried the mirror trick and he just seemed to swim away. Is there another way to reduce his stress levels?
Also, even though I don't have tannin, should I still do a 50% water change and turn the filter off for a certain amount of time?
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