I’ve Given Up

Merryn O'Shea

Valued Member
Reaction score
4 years
I’ve given up. I’m losing so many fish. And I have no clue why. Below is the description of each fish that I have lost, and a description of what is currently going on. Originally in this fish tank I had six guppies and nine female bettas and now I am down to four female bettas and the original six guppies. None of the illnesses that my fish have died from are related which does not make any sense to me as I do not know what to treat next, seeing as each fish dies one at a time from a different cause.

So to begin with, I had 6 male guppies and 9 female bettas in one 70 litre aquarium before I started to lose them. The first fish I lost was a white and red adult female betta and she was experiencing a lot of stress due to the ammonia that was in the aquarium. I do not know why my ammonia went up but my local fish store suggested that I stop doing the 20% water changes that I was conducting because it wouldn’t help seeing as it was an established aquarium. This betta fish was breathing heavily and other than that there was nothing else going on with her.

The second fish I lost was a dark pink female betta and she was only a baby, 3 months old at most. When she passed away she was showing serious indications of dropsy as she has the pinecone shape and stopped eating. At this point I didn’t know what to do because I hadn’t seen anything like it before and the previous death was not related to this one.

The third fish I lost was an adult dark female betta with purple fins and I don’t believe that her death was related either. She became very bloated over the week so naturally I stoped feeding that tank because I gathered that she was constipated. Over the last couple of days that she was with me she started to loose her buoyancy and ended up sinking a lot, so I assumed there was something wrong with her swim bladder because before she would only float to the top. When she began to sink I kept her in the same tank but separated her into this breeder basket looking thing. After I got back from work she was dead.

The second to last fish I lost was my “wild caught” female betta. Don’t worry she was not wild caught but everyone thought she was because of her colours. Anyway this was the female that I messaged you about via Facebook Messenger. If you need a recap I will happily go other what happened again.

And lastly I lost another female today, a dark blue/purple betta. Now this was much similar to the third betta I lost because she didn’t have control over her swim bladder and floated around. The only difference with this was that I believe that she may have lost her eye sight. I do not know if the eyes go cloudy or what not when they do go blind, but she would bump into things and she never knew when I was going to touch her (to see if she was still alive because she was floating all the time). It was very odd and painful to watch, my plan was to separate her after work tonight because I don’t want a fish with bad eye sight around others because she would just hurt herself. But as I said, she died a few hours ago.

Unfortunately I seem to have another one that will pass probably overnight which is very sad. She became very bloated just like the fish before and then under 24 hours she developed dropsy, which I know is a secondary issue. It’s hard because I don’t know the first thing that caused them to fall ill . Today I put her in a salt bath for 10 minutes and then put her back in the original tank and dosed with the correct amount of an anti-internal bacteria treatment. A lot of people may be wondering why I don’t separate her, but I’m not going to do that because after everything that’s happened in this tank I believe that whatever is going on is a communicable disease. It’s funny how my guppies are still alive when everyone I know has had such bad luck with them and when all my fish are dying they are fine.

I’ve tried to get in touch with so many people in terms of helping me identify what is going on, because this needs to be sorted now - you see I have two females in quarantine that need to be moved soon. It’s very upsetting to watch all my fish suffer but how can I help them if I don’t know what’s wrong in the first place. I’m going to keep my fingers crossed and hope that someone on here all know what’s wrong and will help me. I love you guys, Thank you in advance.


Well Known Member
Reaction score
5 to 10 years
I think the tank may be too small, and one of the female bettas may be aggressive. 18 US gallons is all your tank is, with two separate schools, and yes female bettas really can be just as aggressive as the males are known for.
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