Betta Fish issues

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ShannonDurnan

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I purchased a male Crown-tailed Betta (Merlin) about 2 months ago and he is living in a 3 gallon tank filtered tank. He does not like the filter being on however even on it's lowest setting. He was very entertaining and active at first and then started to go downhill rather quickly and all he did was lay on the bottom of the tank or in his rock cave. About 5 days ago I bought a heater and Stress coat water conditioner and that seems to have helped some but now all he does is stay near the heater and doens't swim around or anything. The heater is preset at 78 temperature.

I have been feeding him Tetra BettaMin flake food and once in a while he gets Tetra freeze dried BloodWorms. Any suggestions on other food options or anything else I can do that will improve his activity level?
 

LiterallyHydro

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Is he like this because of the filter? You could replace the filter with a sponge filter so there will be less current in the tank. Is he more active when the filter is off?

As far as food goes, I always recommend New Life Spectrum or Omega One before Tetra.
 

Dom90

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Tetra contains a lot of useless fillers such as wheat flour and gluten meal. I would switch him to Omega One betta buffet pellets, much better brand and should cost a couple dollars more. Also, what are your water parameters?


 

oOBlueOo

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I'd try feeding him frozen foods. Bloodworms and brine shrimp.

There are also better quality flakes out there. My Crowntail gets new life spectrum. Pellets from this brand are also good for bettas, but some are picky eaters.
 

LiterallyHydro

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Dom90 said:
Tetra contains a lot of useless fillers such as wheat flour and gluten meal. I would switch him to Omega One betta buffet pellets, much better brand and should cost a couple dollars more. Also, what are your water parameters?

Wheat flour is in my NLS Thera A+ food as well. I just checked the ingredients on that to confirm it. Although Whole Antarctic Krill and Whole Fish come before Whole Wheat Flour.
 
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ShannonDurnan

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I have the filter turned off most of the time since he doesn't seem to like the water movement

I will look into other food brands, thank you for the suggestion.
 

Dom90

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LiterallyHydro said:
Wheat flour is in my NLS Thera A+ food as well. I just checked the ingredients on that to confirm it. Although Whole Antarctic Krill and Whole Fish come before Whole Wheat Flour.
Yea but all the other junk like gluten and soybean meal, ground brown rice?


 
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ShannonDurnan

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I tested the water's PH level and it is high. Could that be a problem?
 

Nympxzie

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What kind of filter are you using? Betta have heavy tails and a 3 gallon is small, really any filter output in a tank that size will be too strong. I recommend a sponge filter.

Is your tank actually 78? Use a thermometer. Preset heaters are not accurate and tend to heat to 74 or 70, I've almost never had a preset one heat up to 78. A betta needs his tank to be at least 75. if you find the heater is getting your water to at least 75 or above you will need to invest in a small 25 watt adjustable heater

Flake food is not good for bettas. they tend to get a lot of air in with every bite of food they tank and can cause bloat. Tetramin brand flakes is also very bad for fish. It's full of fillers, soy products and other stuff that's just plain yuck! Try Omega One betta pellets, New life spectrum brand (thera a or cichlid pellets). Here's a great guide on what to look for in the ingredients in fish food.

You can make sure he has plenty off hides, surface cover and try using a hand mirror for a few minutes a day to play with him.
 

LiterallyHydro

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Dom90 said:
Yea but all the other junk like gluten and soybean meal, ground brown rice?
They are not in the NLS foods. I was just pointing out that Wheat Flour is still in the food.

OP, do you have a freshwater master test kit? If he's sitting on the bottom it is a possible symptom of ammonia poisoning. Especially since you say you have the filter off a lot. Ammonia is very bad for the fish and you will need to have a filter running constantly. That's why I suggest a sponge filter so you can run the filter without adding too much current to the tank.
 

Nympxzie

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ShannonDurnan said:
I tested the water's PH level and it is high. Could that be a problem?
How High is high? Fish are able to adapt to many pH levels.
 

Dom90

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There's also filters made for tanks that are 3 gallons or less. One is the Tetra Whisper 3i that I got at Petsmart for my betta's tank.


 

LiterallyHydro

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Aren't they powered by an air pump? They aren't really different from your average sponge filter, which could be bought for like $4 online.
 

Dom90

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Yea it uses an air pump just like a sponge filter. It's not that bad for a filter but I changed things around and added a bio ball into the compartment.


 

LiterallyHydro

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Interesting. Assuming it comes with an air pump for it, it would be a good choice for someone who doesn't have a spare air pump laying around. Although I feel a sponge filter would be a better value if you do have some spare things laying around.
 

BornThisWayBettas

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Hi there and welcome to Fish Lore!!!! Pleasure to meet you!

We need to know what your water parameters are, like ammonia, nitrite, and nitrates. Please remember to test with a liquid test kit, like the API Freshwater Master Test Kit. Test strips are inaccurate.
 

Nympxzie

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LiterallyHydro said:
Interesting. Assuming it comes with an air pump for it, it would be a good choice for someone who doesn't have a spare air pump laying around. Although I feel a sponge filter would be a better value if you do have some spare things laying around.
The tetra 3i does come with its own pump, but I find they out after a few months. Eventually all that comes out are a few bubbles. I would invest in a sponge filter any day.
 

Dom90

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Yea I'm not really satisfied with the Tetra 3i and thinking about changing it because like you said only a few bubbles now, but I've spent so much on other tanks and stuff, I gotta wait a bit more.
 
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ShannonDurnan

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Thank you all for the great suggestions

I really appreciate all the advice

I will look into some better options for food and filters for him and hopefully that will help, as well as test his water again.
 

Anders247

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Welcome to fishlore!
I hope you enjoy the forum....
 
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