Please Help I.d. My Betta's Sickness!

  1. BettaBritt

    BettaBritt New Member Member

    Update 8/9/17 4:30pm:
    Last night Rex started staying at the bottom of tank. I had put in another filter on Monday, added nitrate absorbing media and performed water changes getting my nitrites down to 0ppm, ammonia was 0ppm and nitrates to 10ppm. Today he wasn't moving and I tested the water again and somehow within 24 hours my nitrates significantly increased. I took Rex out and put him in a clean bowl to see if he was still alive but I am devastated to say that he has passed away. :( I am so upset & now that he is in the bowl and I can see him up close I found grayish purple/red marks on him which I mentioned I noticed faintly before. Does anyone know what this disease causes these lesions? I have included new pictures below.
    Original Post:
    Please Help Save Captain Rex! He hasn't been acting himself the past couple weeks. I've tried treating him with aquarium salt and anti fungal treatment because it has worked in the past for a minor fungal infection. Unfortunately when I first got him in December he had been mistreated prior to my saving him (he was living in a child's room in a .5 gallon carrier tank, 67 degree water and he had major fin rot). I rescued him from the family and bought him a 2.5 gallon tank, heater, filter, live plants, top of the line food, treats, etc. I've had him for about 9 months now and he has flourished. I moved in April and during the transport & despite my efforts his tank got down to 70 degree range & prob caused some stress. He was doing well April-June but the past few weeks he hasn't been as active and lately he hides in the corner of the tank at the top behind the filter or on top of the heater (which he has always done to rest his fins). The heater has been unplugged bc it has been way too hot and even with A/C on his tank will not drop below 80.5. On average his tank is kept around 81-82 degrees (often getting to 83 due to hot weather without the heater plugged in). His behavior is very strange he acts like he is skittsh now if I turn on the light or go near the tank he goes to the other corner and hides. A few times he tried to eat blood worms and would act normal but then miss and start darting around the tank ultimately going back to the corner. The few times he has ventured away from the corner I saw him once on the gravel hiding under an almond leaf and the other couple times he has left the corner he darted at lightning speed across the tank and was banging into the glass frantically. At first I thought it was old age or the water was too warm but the water temp has never been an issue before. his coloring has also dulled back to the muted green and when I shine the light on him I see an extreme golden sheen (which I was told was his iridescentce before). I know when the flash is on the camera (like it the pic below) it makes it appear to be velvet but I am unsure that is the case. I tried covering his tank with towel and turning up temp between 82-84 for 5-7 days and added aquarium salts as researched. I also notice some areas that look slightly cut up (you can see in the pictures) almost like scales are missing but I do not see red or grey coloring in the wounds. There is one teeny white-ish dot on his head but I don't think it is ick. don't know what to do, I bought tons of different tests, medicine, etc. I read the best way to treat velvet is wutg Fritz Coppersafe and I dosed accordingly and nothing seemed to change. His water parameters have always been fine - though this week the nitrates were in the "stress" range at 20ppm and my nitrites are 1ppm (probably from unrated food I haven been able to remove). The tap water (I obviously condition) at our new house has a really high PH (~8.3) and the well water at our old house was still high but not as alkaline. With the PH being high and Extremely hard water I don't if that could be contributing). I tried adding a tiny bit of distilled water to lower ph but it doesn't have minerals so it isn't a good option. I don't know if I should treat him with Seachem Kanaplex (I purchased a few days ago). I also bought betta revive and I have bettafix. Please Help!! I have included pics of when I first rescued him and a few months later (before and after) and some pics of his rapid decline in July. He won't eat and he hides in the corner please help! Poor Captain Rex is on borrowed time.
     

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  2. AllieSten

    AllieSten Fishlore VIP Member

    Hi there. Welcome to Fishlore. Sorry Captain Rex isn't doing well.

    First thing is, I am not sure if it is velvet or not. @KimberlyG might be able to give a second opinion here. I just can't tell. I am leaning towards no, but I am just not sure.

    Second you should NEVER have nitrites. Never. You may have a small ammonia spike from rotting food, but not nitrites. If you have 1ppm of Nitrites, something is going on with your cycle. I suggest doing a 75% water change right away. This will drop the nitrites down to 0.25ppm. A much tolerable level. It will also drop your nitrates down to 5. Which is much better anyways. Is your ammonia at 0? (Why can't you get up the rotting food, btw. Do you vacuum?)

    Don't use the bettafix. It can be easily overdosed and can harm your fish.

    The first thing I would do is daily water change for the next 3-4 days. 50% or so. See if he perks up. The high nitrites might be the issue.

    I wouldn't dose the Kanaplex just yet. The betta revive is a good idea though. The problem is that if you add it directly to the tank, it will kill off your cycle. So I would do a betta revive bath. Get a small food safe container. Fill with fresh dechlorinated water. Add the betta revive. Let your betta swim in the bowl for 20-30 minutes and put back in his tank. I would do this for the next 3-4 days. See if he improves.

    Hope this helps some. Good luck.
     
  3. OP
    OP
    BettaBritt

    BettaBritt New Member Member

    Thank you. So I checked my water again after I posted and it is: Ammonia: 0; Nitrates 20ppm, Nitrites: .5ppm, Alkalinity: 40 , PH: ~7.8. I changed 25% of the water (before I saw your reply) but I will do a 50% change as soon as I can. The reason I am my nitrates might be higher than usual is because I don't vacuum everyday & Rex hasn't been eating so there are extra particles and the flakes make a mess (I have the fluval gravel vac which I use every other week). Most of the time I use the betta waste remover to suction out waste from gravel and do partial water changes weekly. I don't want him to starve so sometimes I leave a pellet in there in case he changed his mind and decides to eat & they are easy to remove. I ordered a new filter and a good air pump to help aerate the water since I think the increased temp and lack of filter performance are messing with the cycle. They should be delivered by Monday so hopefully it helps. I have noticed my filter is working poorly and the water is coming out really slow only from one side, cleaning it did not help either and removing the carbon filter doesn't change the flow volume. :(
     
  4. R

    Racing1113 Well Known Member Member

    I would use your gravel vac at every water change. I would also do 30% water changes 2-3 times a week. With a tank that small there's not a lot of room for error. I agree that his behavior is most likely due to the high nitrites. Also, when you get the new filter make sure you take the media from your current filter and transfer it over so you don't lose your cycle.
     
  5. KimberlyG

    KimberlyG Fishlore VIP Member

    I don't see velvet. In fact I don't see anything tell-tale. You said he had live plants? Do you fertalize them? With what?
     
  6. OP
    OP
    BettaBritt

    BettaBritt New Member Member

    Thanks! Well that is good news, I am just worried bc of his color loss and lethargy, lack of eating, skittish behavior and the darkish marks (scratches) on his body which were not noticeable before. He is also almost 2 years old maybe his colors are fading. And @KimberlyG in regards to the live plants question, I used to have live plants (in the before/after pic above when I first rescued Rex) but they started turning brown and ultimately I got these gross little white worms so I threw them outside. I just have a few moss balls & I use those sun grow leaves, but nothing planted. When I get my bigger tank in a week or so I want to have a planted aquarium- I bought the special gravel for live aquariums & the plant pruning tools 5 months ago. Lol. I am debating Fluval Edge 6g or 12g or the Spec V which is best for Betta's - any recommendations?
     
  7. OP
    OP
    BettaBritt

    BettaBritt New Member Member

    Thanks for the feedback. I am hoping it is just the nitrates. And the 50% water change today + new filter coming today from Amazon will help. My filter now is a crappy one that came with the tank kit I bought in December so I should just put the carbon filter in the new one? Assuming it will fit.. :/ I also have Seachem purigen which I bought months ago but it came in a sealed filter bag and I don't want to use the 100ml dose (meant for 100 gallon tanks) and I can't open it to disperse it because only Seachem bags can hold the Purigen since the particles are fine. Do you know if 100ml would be too much for his 2.5g tank by any chance? It is a quick way to detoxify all the nitrates and any ammonia present.
     
  8. KimberlyG

    KimberlyG Fishlore VIP Member

    I only have a Fluval Chi. The flow is almost non-exsistant so it's great for my betta. I know a lot of people here have the Spec Vs. Is the Edge the one that people have trouble with because the opening is narrow and it is hard to maneuver your hand around when cleaning or aquascaping? I'm sure someone will comment. I would concentrate on the water changes and parameters for now.
     
  9. OP
    OP
    BettaBritt

    BettaBritt New Member Member

    Update: I am devastated to say that Rex just passed away despite my efforts and getting the tank parameters down (nitrites: 0ppm, ammonia 0ppm, nitrates 10ppm the past couple of days). I am certain now that Rex had an infection or disease of some type. I took pictures since I was able to see him up close (which was difficult in his tank). Does anyone know what these gray-ish/red lesions on Rex's body are? I wonder if it was velvet after all or septicemia... I wish I knew so I could have medicated him properly. I don't think it was old age though he is 2 years old...
     

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  10. KimberlyG

    KimberlyG Fishlore VIP Member

    I'm very sorry for your loss. :(
    It is hard to see under those metallic scales. I'm not certain what was going on in that area.