Betta Lethargic, Not Eating, & Stays At Bottom Of Tank

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by demagxc, Jul 12, 2017.

  1. demagxcNew MemberMember

    For the last 3 days after returning from a 2 week vacation, my betta has been staying at the bottom of the tank and not eating. Occasionally I see her swimming but 99% of the time she remains at the bottom of the tank and looks to be breathing more heavily than usual. When I first got home she seemed to perk up and swim to the surface but when I tried to feed her a broken up pellet, she took a bite then spit it out. That was 3 days ago and she hasn't eaten since.

    While on vacation I had an auto feeder that fed her the same amount of pellets twice a day on the same schedule as when I am home. The light in the tank was off the whole time because it must be turned on and off manually on the filer housing. In its place I put a lamp facing the tank that was set on a timer for my normal schedule.

    I have had her for 3 months and her tank was fully cycled before I left for vacation. Her tank is a planted 5 gallon Fluval Chi with a filter. I have a heater and fan connected to a digital temperature controller that keeps the tank at 79°F +/- 0.5°. She lives with one vampire shrimp and one amano shrimp. Both are doing just fine and show no signs of unusual behavior.

    When I got home the water parameters were the following:

    PH: 7.4
    Ammonia: 0
    Nitrites: 0
    Nitrates: 40

    The tank was dirty with visible uneaten food and a great deal of poop on the surface of the sand floor. I did a 25% water change and tried to clean as much of the poop and food as possible as I thought the cause of her trouble might have been an excessively dirty tank. It was not as clean as I would have liked.

    The next day there was still no change in her behavior and the tank and water still looked dirty. I took all the plants and decorations out of the tank and rinsed them with treated water. I vacuumed the tank multiple times to get as much of the poop and anything else off the sand by vacuuming/siphoning water into a bucket then filtered the siphoned water back into the tank and repeating until I was satisfied.

    My next thought was that the water may have been bad from the excessive uneaten food and uncleaned poop, so I performed a 75% water change. In hindsight that may have been a mistake, but whats done is done. I have a second sponge in the filter housing so I am hoping there is double the beneficial bacteria to keep the water in good condition.

    Yesterday there was no change in her behavior and this morning I still could not get her to swim to the surface for food. I've tried to get her moving using a laser pointer but that s not worked.

    After reading through as many posts as I can I believe it may be swim bladder. I plan on fasting her for another day or two and trying to feed her piece of cooked pea. Because she isnt eating I dont know if I should try and add meds to the water and wanted some feedback before going that route. I would hate to loose her.
  2. Aquaphobia

    AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    I would try methylene blue. Her behaviour makes me think nitrate poisoning. Meth blue is also in a product called Betta Revive.
  3. OP

    demagxcNew MemberMember

    I will have to call the aquarium supply shops in my area to see if they have it. Petco and Walmart don't seem to carry it and if this is the solution, I wouldn't want to wait the 2 days to get it from Amazon. Do you know if meth blue / Betta Revive is safe for shrimp? If not I would have no problem temporarily moving them to a separate container temporarily.
  4. Buganjimo

    BuganjimoWell Known MemberMember

    I don't know about the shrimp but I would probably just tale them out, shrimp don't do well with most fish meds. I got my betta revive at big al's
  5. OP

    demagxcNew MemberMember

    It doesn't look like anyone around me caries Betta Revive and Amazon cant deliver till Saturday at best. Is there anything else that contains methylene blue? Ive been trying to google but haven't had any luck so far but I'll keep looking.
  6. Aquaphobia

    AquaphobiaFishlore LegendMember

    Check with a pharmacy or scientific supply store. It's also used as a dye.

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