Introduced a Plecostomus and my Betta got sick!

Alexjo

Hello everyone, I am new here but I am so confused with my tank right now. About 4 months ago I got a tank for the first time (10 gal) and I set everything up and put a betta and a mystery snail in after letting it cycle and everything. Well about a week ago I introduced a clown plecostomus and within a day or two of having him my Betta got sick and was always laying at the bottom of the tank and if he did swim around it was frantic. Also his fins became jagged and somewhat holy but there were no other signs of fin rot. He eats good still, now not as much as he used to but I think he is getting worse. He also seems very scared when he brushes up against something on accident like if someone where to scare you and you jumped. Well exactly 7 days since I brought in the plecostomus he suddenly died. Now I am new so I am worried I don’t have to correct water conditions so we are taking it in to get tested and buying the liquid tester instead of sticks. My plecostomus didn’t act sick at all he was always swimming across the glass of floor and always eating. I will admit that I only fed him once because I hadn’t done enough research but now I do know you should feed them more frequently. He didn’t have anything wrong in appearance so I’m not sure if he was already sick or it was my water or something else. I took him out but before I did my Betta would not go near him and was always frantic if the plecostomus got super close. My Betta is still sick but I did notice that he had turned a little white on his lower half midway into the week near his head and now it is going back to normal. I just don’t know where to go from here. My mystery snail is acting normal but I would hate to try to introduce a new fish and risk hurting the tank even more. If anyone has any idea of what I might’ve done wrong please let me know. I am also new to this so I could’ve done something completely wrong so please just tell me everything because I want to learn as much as possible. I tried to do a lot of research before and sometimes the internet isn’t super reliable compared to other fish owners. Thanks!
 

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Champanier

I'm new to fish keeping, but I have learned some things that might be helpful. When you're bringing in new fish (or plants), it's best to set up a separate quarantine tank and put them in there for at least two weeks (I do at least a month). That way, they have time to get over anything they might have, including things that are due to poor water quality or overcrowding in a fish store. I didn't know that you're NOT supposed to add the fish store water from the bag that the fish came in to the tank when you put in the fish. I float the bag for about half an hour to make sure the water temperature is the same. Then I poke a small hole with scissors in the top where the air is and gently drain out most of the water into a little bucket, then quickly open the bag and put the new fish in the tank. It sounds to me (this is very inexpert) that the betta might have had columnaris. Look that up and see if it seems the same. Then find out what you should do about the tank to be sure it doesn't spread. Good luck!
 
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awilkinson871

If you did not have a water test kit then I would guess that adding a pleco into the tank caused a rise in ammonia, then nitrites. This causes stress to the fish and will cause it to become ill. Plecos are scaleless so they are usually the first to become affected and harder to treat when ill. A 10 gallon tank is not large enough for a clown pleco as they usually need at least 25 gallons because they grow to 4 inches long.
 
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Alexjo

I'm new to fish keeping, but I have learned some things that might be helpful. When you're bringing in new fish (or plants), it's best to set up a separate quarantine tank and put them in there for at least two weeks (I do at least a month). That way, they have time to get over anything they might have, including things that are due to poor water quality or overcrowding in a fish store. I didn't know that you're NOT supposed to add the fish store water from the bag that the fish came in to the tank when you put in the fish. I float the bag for about half an hour to make sure the water temperature is the same. Then I poke a small hole with scissors in the top where the air is and gently drain out most of the water into a little bucket, then quickly open the bag and put the new fish in the tank. It sounds to me (this is very inexpert) that the betta might have had columnaris. Look that up and see if it seems the same. Then find out what you should do about the tank to be sure it doesn't spread. Good luck!
Okay thank you, I’ve looked at so many parasites and such and out of all of them I do think he might have it. Thank you so much for your recommendations!
If you did not have a water test kit then I would guess that adding a pleco into the tank caused a rise in ammonia, then nitrites. This causes stress to the fish and will cause it to become ill. Plecos are scaleless so they are usually the first to become affected and harder to treat when ill. A 10 gallon tank is not large enough for a clown pleco as they usually need at least 25 gallons because they grow to 4 inches long.
I really appreciate your reply, I did have my suspicions when the Petsmart lady told me it was okay to put him in a 10 gallon but I figured we could give it a try. I will never buy anymore fish or critters from them or Petco, I wish someone was more educated there to actually help me out! We have two legitimate aquatic stores so I will only purchase from them. I am going to buy a water testing kit so I can hopefully nurse my Betta back to health. Thanks!
 
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Fisch

Sorry to hear that the Betta died, and good that the Betta is improving now. Hope the progreas will continue.
With the new pleco in the tank, how did your water change schedule change? Did the temperature change? How big was the pleco when you got him?
 
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Lucy

Hi welcome to FishLore!
I'm really sorry you had a rough start. All the info on the net can be overwhelming.

Smart move to get your own test kit. If you haven't done so read about the
nitrogen cycle<--Link

It could explain why your fish are/were showing the symptoms you described.

Good luck!
 
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