Dont know how to help my Betta.

Discussion in 'Betta Fish' started by shawnt123zabfn, Dec 3, 2009.

  1. shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    Hey guy,

    I was wandering if anyone could help me diagonse the problem with my Betta fish / Siamies Fighter. Hes gone pail in the face, the fins are frying, he keeps rubbing agains the glass and has some sort fo shiny tint to his fin and ends of his scails. Ive only had him for 4 days but when I bought him he looked fine. This is my first fishtank and dont really know what to do to help him. When prepering the tank I only used declorinator and a bit of salt the temp is 27c. Not sure about the other stuff (ammonia, nitrite ect) not sure how to test it.
    Any help will be much apreciated.

    Thank you.
  2. redlessi

    redlessiWell Known MemberMember

    Welcome to the Forum!!! Maybe you can read about the nitrogen cycle on the forum it will help explain about ammonia etc. Your tank is most likely not cycled and you will need to do water changes until it is. As far as I know you do not need salt in your tank. To test the water most users here recommend an API freshwater test kit. I am sure some others will come along with more info. Dont get discouraged, many of us have been exactly where you are. You came to the right place. Good Luck
  3. Lucy

    LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Hi welcome to FishLore :)
    What size tank is he in? Any tank mates? If so what kind and how many?
    When was the last time you changed the water?
    I would agree with reds, read up on the nitrogen cycle and stop adding salt.
    He could be feeling the effects of a cycling tank.
    If you don't have a test kit, maybe the fish store can test your water for you until you get a kit.
    Have them write down the readings for ammonia nitrite and nitrate.

    Here's some info that might help:
    Betta care guide

    Good luck, I hope he feels better.

  4. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    thanks guys

    The last time I changed the water was about 3 days ago, its a 32 liter tank and his fish mates a 1Xalgie eater 5Xpenguins and 2Xsowrdtails. Im gonna do a water change to day and see were I can get a test kit and sort out the water. Can it be that the coner filter isnt cleaning the water properly as Ive heard they are not very good filters.

  5. theshiftys_jmValued MemberMember

    Hi, and welcome! It sounds to me like he may have a fungus, or mix of fungus, and a possible type of bacteria. You said his fins are "frying." I'm going to assume by that statement that you mean his fins are going away or degrading? If you look on the very edges of the fins and it looks dark at the tips, that could be fin rot. If you can hot foot it down to your pet store, see if they carry the following:

    Water test kit. Even the strips will get you a ball park reading to see what your water is doing.

    Anti-fungal powder. Jungle makes pretty good stuff

    Ampicillin or Tetracycline Both are a broad spectrum anti-biotic.

    Mecklin (SP?) or maricyn... Blue.... Can't remember the proper name but the fish guy will know what it is. Another good liquid type broad spectrum anti-biotic and helps healing.

    Follow the dosing directions to a "T" as it's based on the size of your tank. You don't want to overdo it or you will end up killing him with too much meds.

    If your tank is filtered, take the filter out.

    And as the people prior to me said. "Water changes, water changes." I'd do at least half, if not more water change every 2-3 days, and keep him on the meds for a couple of weeks.

    Mine are in 1.5 gallon tanks so I did full water changes when one of them was sick.

    Hope this helps!

    Ahh... Just read your new post after I posted. If you can isolate him to his own small tank or even a fish bowl. Something he can be comfortable in, but small enough to make it easy on you to take care of him.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 4, 2009
  6. Aquarist

    AquaristFishlore LegendMember

    Hello Shawn. Welcome to Fish Lore. :animal0068: I have moved your thread to the "Betta" section of the forum. Hopefully this will help you to get more responses from our Betta owners.
    Best wishes and I hope your fish is going to be alright!
  7. crazedACD

    crazedACDValued MemberMember

    Sorry to hear about your betta. How long has your tank been set up? It seems you might be a little overstocked, although you might be able to get away with it if you keep up water changes and test your water. Have you read the nitrogen cycle page? Nitrogen Cycle

    I agree about separating and treating, probably daily water changes for now. Are the fins turning black or are there chunks taken out of them? My concern is your algae you know what kind you have? Is it a Chinese like this one?:

    These fish are bad news for most aquariums, they suck the slime coat off your fish and might take a few chunks too (could be the 'shiny' scales you are describing, I've seen this in goldfish attacked by the chinese algae eaters). They are just too nasty of a fish, I don't know why they are still in the pet trade. If that's what you have I would return it ASAP.
  8. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    Its a pleco alge eater. The dorsil fin has started going transperant between the spines. The shiny patches seem to be on the head mostly. Ive done a water change and treated the water. Ive started treating him with a anti fungal and bacterial selution made hear in SA they say its good but well see. Im gonna try uploading some photos.
  9. Lucy

    LucyModeratorModerator Member

    Without knowing the water parameters and being he's with other fish, it would be a good idea to move him to a heated tank of his own.
    Most bettas don't make good community fish. There's either aggression from the betta or the other fish can't resist his flowing fins.
    It could very well be that he's getting picked at. Especially since you've only had him 4 days and he looked fine when you bought him.
    Moving him to at least a 2.5 tank, better yet a 5g, keeping the water pristine to prevent infection if it hasn't already set in. Some extra Stress Coat, Garlic Guard and Vita-Chem will help his immune system.

    Personally, I wouldn't start with meds with out knowing exactly whats wrong and without seeing a pic.

    Have you moved him to a quarantine tank?
    If meds are needed, it's not advisable to treat healthy fish.

    If you could fill in your aquarium info, it would help the members knowing all the info at a glance.
    It can be found under My Settings at the top left.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2009
  10. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    Here are some pics, I know they are bad but you can see the areas of faded color and "shiny stuff" at the head.

    Attached Files:

  11. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    Is it possable that the swordtails are hurting him?
  12. Meenu

    MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    Welcome to fishlore!

    I'm going to respectfully disagree with some of this. I think that many fish problems are due to poor water conditions and can be solved without medications. And fish can be very delicate - many times, medications can make things worst rather than better. I would not medicate this fish, especially if you don't even know 100% what is wrong.

    The nitrogen cycle is basically this:
    Your tank has ammonia from the waste the fish produce. The beneficial bacteria living on the surface of your gravel and filter media eats the ammonia, changing it to nitrite. Another beneficial bacteria converts that into nitrates.

    Any amount of ammonia or nitrites can be lethal to fish. A small amount of nitrates are fine (5-20). Once your tank is cycled, it means you have enough benefical bacteria growing to eat all the ammonia and nitrites, making your tank a healthy place to live. Your readings should be 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, and 5-20 nitrates.

    You need a good liquid test kit to check your water. I tink your fish may be having problems because of :
    1) stress from the water conditions not being cycled
    2) overcrowding, OR
    3) fish that are not compatible being in the same tank.

    If you take care of these issues, it is possible that the problems will clear up. If you get this all fixed up, nothing else is working, and we can figure oout what is wrong with the betta, then you should think of medicating.

    If you aren't able to get him his own tank (I'd say 3 gallon minimum, 5 gallon preferred), could you return him to the fish store?

    Also, since he's new and is having problems, keep in mind that he might have contaminated your other fish. You should keep an eye on your water conditions (of course, you'll need to get a test kit - I'm not sure what is available in your country, just know that the strips that you dip into the water are not accurate). Until your water is cycled, you may also want to consider doing water changes every day with a conditioner called Prime, which will help make the water safe from ammonia, etc., for 24 hours at a time.

    Good luck with your tank!

    EDIT: Oh, and I'm not sure why anyone is recommending that you remove your filter. That's where the beneficial bacteria in your tank grows. If you end up medicating, carbon will remove the medications, so it is recommended that you remove any carbon from your filter. But your filter should not be removed from your tank in my opinion.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2009
  13. Shawnie

    ShawnieFishlore LegendMember

    +2 GREAT advice :)
  14. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    I have the betta on his own but now it seams that a swordtail and penguin have started aswell. :eek: I went to some fish stores today (only 4 were I live) and see they all have betta problems. Im getting a test kit tomorrow. I had no idea fish were so much hard work. Ill be doing another water change tomorrow mornig.
  15. Meenu

    MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    I am so sorry for your troubles. I've had my tank set up for about 2 months now, and I also did not realize that it would be so much work. Once the tank is cycled and you see the 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 5-20 nitrate readings, it is so exciting. You feel a great sense of accomplishment. For me, all the work was worth the end result: a fish tank that is healthy for my fish and enjoyable for my family. I hope this encourages you.

    One word of warning: if you go to the fish stores and mention the nitrogen cycle, the employees may tell you wrong things. I had people tell me the cycle was nothing, even. They may also try to sell you products to help your tank cycle faster. Most of these products (stress zyme, nutrafin cycle, etc.) do NOT cycle your tank. They contain bacteria that is not aquatic, and dies in the water. Then you have to add it every week to keep the cycle up. The good bacteria your tank needs doesn't get an opportunity to grow because it is competing for its food source, ammonia. Please don't use these products. The only one that contains the proper bacteria, at least in the US, is Tetra Safe Start. TSS, if used properly, will usually work to cycle your tank within 10 days, and you don't have to keep adding it.
  16. fishtroyWell Known MemberMember

    poor little guy, I hope he feels better soon. What kind of tank was he in when you bought him? Sometimes fish that come from cordial cups and small spaces can have underlying health conditions.
  17. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    Well he was in a tank not much bigger than the one I put him in, he was with swordtails. All my penguins died yesterday late afternoon. So maby if it was due to overcrowded this will help but my poor penguins. I started my search for a testkit but only one shop has and they are extremly expensive R260 for the kit to give you an idea I payed R18 for the siamese and the meds are 12 to 17 rand a bottle. Im tring to see if I can get somewere else. I got a ph test kit for 25 bucks and found that the ph was at 9. Ive droped it to 6.5 and hope this might help him.
  18. OP

    shawnt123zabfnNew MemberMember

    Well the siamese seams to be getting better, hes more active and is eating much better, still rubs the glass. I have gotten a second tank much larger than the one I have 100l so before I start it I want to make sure that I get this one problem free.
  19. fishtroyWell Known MemberMember

    I'm glad he appears to be improving. :)

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