How long has he been in the tank? He could be stressed if he was recently moved.
Is the tank cycled? and what are your ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate readings? These toxins are major stressors of fish.
Does he have any tankmates? what? Some fish may nip or chase Bettas.
It's possible that the presence of lighting in the tank changes the way your Betta appears.
he was just put in today at around 3 p.m. - no he is very calm and his coloration is still pretty dull except when I hold a tubiflex cube in and he'll swim up to nip it but shy out - that's when his color is good. how do u know if ur tank is cycled - also do u have to do nitrogen, and ph testing and stiff? Miley
There are some very experienced folk on this group who can help you tons, but since no one has responded yet, I'll jump in and do what I can. You know your tank is cycled when your ammonia= 0 Nitrites = 0 and Nitrates = around 15-20. Which means, yes you do need to test for these things. If you can't get the tests right now, you can take your water sample to a local pet store. Most stores that deal in fish will test your water for you. A word of caution would be, do not always trust the advice they give you. They are trying to sell their products and they do not always know what they are talking about, I'm speaking from experience here. I've wasted loads of money on chemicals that aren't good for my tank.
At the top of the betta forum page, there is a post for begginners to read. This will help you tons!
No, I am sorry to say that her tank is not cycled or heated or even has a good filter. She has him in a 1.5 gallon tank and had just lost 2 tetras and a betta in this tank previously.
He is probably cold and he also could be getting overfed if you are giving him cubes of those worms. Will you read the Betta Care Guide and then try to do what is the best for your fish? He should not be getting more than a couple or three small worms or pellets for a meal and only fed 2 times a day. He can become constipated and die a horrible death.
Here is the link to the Betta Care Guide:
Please, read it and it will give you a lot of information about how to make a betta healthy and happy.
You need to get test kits for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, and pH. Yes you need to have these--especially the first 3. I can not stress this enough. These toxins can kill fish overnight, and you do not even know they are there without a test kit. A fish can only be healthy and happy if the ammonia and nitrite levels are 0 and nitrates are 20 or less. Taking water samples to the pet store is just not good enough. If a fish is acting funny, the first thing you always do is test the water. But what if the pet stores are closed? Your fish could die because you don't even know what is wrong. Test kits are one of the most important things you will buy. Oh, by the way get the liquid test kind, not dip tests since they aren't accurate.
Of course, tests are fairly useless if you don't even have a filter, because you already know there will be high ammonia (which is the deadliest toxin) without anything to remove it. Here's how the nitrogen cycle works in case you are not familiar with it: the fish produces waste (ammonia); bacteria grows in the filter which "eats" the ammonia and turns it into nitrites (also toxic); a different kind of bacteria grows which turns the nitrites into nitrates (not harmful until they reach large amounts); and then of course you do your weekly water changes to dilute the nitrates. Without a filter this cycle can not happen and the fish will die, I am sorry to say.
I am sure your Betta is a very sweet fish and I know you care about him and so please do what is best for him. Bettas can not live comfortably without heat and some room to swim around and clean water. Please get him at least a 5 gallon with heating and filtration. Then he will definitely become much more colorful and active...just ask anyone who's moved a Betta into a bigger tank, they are so much happier.
no, I didn't lose a betta in this tank ( I did lose the tetras in it though) , I had gotten a tank that was said to be for bettas at walmart that was less than a gallon!! and I knew it was WAY too small. also she died in a traggic accident - she was squished by a decoration ( which I no longer have) . and I will read that betta info. it does sound helpful. thnx. Miley