Spartacus, update 2

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Eskielvr

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I put Spartacus in my 1 gallon vase on Thursday, due to the rising Ammonia levels, along with some Nitrite and Nitrate levels, despite having used Bio Spira after a complete water change. I have to say, since he's been in the vase and treated with Bettafix he's doing much much better! His eyes are starting to loose the red and regain normal coloring, and his fins are healing nicely. He seems to like it better in the vase than in the tank!

I took more readings today, in his 5 gallon tank that I removed him from, and Ammonia is even higher. It's climbed to 2ppm, Nitrite is steady at .25 and Nitrates remain steady also, at 5. It's been 5 days since I added the Bio Spira. I've come to the conclusion that there's no such thing as an "instant" cycle. HA! I'm going to keep him in the vase until it finally (if ever) does decide to cycle.

After it cycles, I'll put him back in and keep an eye on him and the water readings for several weeks. If he gets fin rot again or I have problems with the readings, then he's going to go back into the vase and stay there. I'm sorry, I know people on here whoop and holler about keeping Bettas in vases, but in all honesty I've never been able to keep a Betta in a filtered/heated tank. They've always done better thus far in the vase, and Spartacus is another testimony to that thus far. BUT, I would still like to keep him in his 5 gallon. He just seems so much calmer and relaxed in the vase, and even has his fins displayed more than when in the tank. (And not flared, displayed)

So, we'll see how it goes if I can ever get that tank to cycle. F&S told me not to add anymore Bio Spira at this point, so I'll give it a few more weeks if need be and will then monitor him for several weeks after. So far so good though! The first time I put him in the vase, he recovered from fin rot completely and then got it again after being in the 5 gallon. Seems to be a trend.
 

COBettaCouple

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I'm glad to hear that he's doing better. Is there any dead/dying plant material in the tank? or poop/food in the gravel? have you been putting something in for ammonia? (If so, you might have more NH4+ than NH3 but a test for free ammonia would determine that.) I know an ammonia spike is part of the cycle, but we've never gone to 2 on any of our tanks when they were first cycling.
 

Timesdragonfly

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I'm glad to hear that he is doing better in the vase. My first attempt at keeping a tank did not go so well. I hope that after the tank cycles you will have better luck. How big are your snails? Having two of them in the five gallon may be part of the problem. Snails make a lot of waste, and in such a small tank, they may throw everything off. Well good luck to ya!!!
 
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Eskielvr

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No, I haven't put any ammonia removing products in the tank, since that'd kill the Bio Spira. And there's no live plants in there, so nothing dead, either. There may be some waste products I didn't get when I did the last water change, and of course the snails are still producing some waste.......but jumping up to 2 ppm?? ???

I have a mystery (or what I believe is an Apple snail) and one small snail about as big as my pinky finger nail. The apple snail is getting pretty big, probably about golf ball size.

If the tank will eventually cycle over time, then I'm fine with that. I'm just starting to question if it can cycle!
 

Timesdragonfly

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It can cycle... but I don't know much about snails. Maybe the one being so large is too big for the small tank.
 

cherryrose

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Thanks for the update on Sparticus. I hope the finrot clears up soon. These little guys sure know how to worry us, but it sounds like you are doing all you can to get him healthy. I hope that you can get the tank cycled soon. I know it has been very frustrating for you to have to deal with the disappointment.

CherryRose
 

voiceless_kat

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Hi Eskielvr - ( I just figured that out - I had an A. Esk. about 40 yrs ago). Anyway, dropping in to say I am tickled that Spartacus is showing signs of healing.

I don't get the whole thing with people keeping bettas in tiny bowls and they never get sick!!! I could not do it now that I see how Neptune careens around his tank...but it kinda ticks me off...we are the ethical ones, and it is like being punished ( well the fish). I am trying to look at it like a bonding thing!! All this interaction, and what Neptune I think sees as "me" time. ( Funny how we all imagine how they talk and what they think/say)

Anyway, Neptune also seems to have some healing - I am using TriSulfa, almost done the second series. When that is done, I am doing a water change, using Amquel again, and just giving him time to heal without changing water. And if there are problems again, I am going straight to TriSulfa. I used all that other **** (and now have a full stock) for over a month - and it was just back and forth, heal, shred, heal , shred.

Then I will worry about the tank cycling after a week on no meds. Funny the bio spira isn't working as quickly as you thought, but it sounds like the tank is cycling just the same. Good Luck, I will watch your progress - hope Neptune follows suit. Val
 

chickadee

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After getting a reward of sorts and getting to go to Petco and PetSmart after going to the doctor today, I will have to say that it really was not a treat to go and be faced with all those little cups of depressed and unhappy bettas. I nearly came to blows with the snotty little woman at Petco when she told me that the only reason I had algae in my tanks was that my tanks were too dirty. She tried to tell me that my water quality was poor and that I needed to test my water! She also told me that you cannot tell the quality of water by Bettas as they were raised in dirty water in rice paddies!!!!. My friend that had me there had to physically pull me out of there before I had a episode bad enough to cause me to be taken to jail or something. I would not be surprised to be banned from the store. PetSmart as usual was better but as usual it was hard to see the little ones unhappy.

Rose
 

COBettaCouple

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We relate to your time at Petco Rose.. they give me the same **** about Bettas coming from dirty little mud puddles.. I've gotten tired of correcting them because it's easier to teach our Bettas than them. It seems like Petco doesn't care that their people are so rude with customers because I experience that at Petcos everywhere we go. Petsmart is better for sure.. i actually saw them treating a sick betta at one of them here in Denver - i was shocked! I've never seen a betta be treated for anything at the chain pet stores before.
 

Phloxface

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chickadee said:
After getting a reward of sorts and getting to go to Petco and PetSmart after going to the doctor today, I will have to say that it really was not a treat to go and be faced with all those little cups of depressed and unhappy bettas.  I nearly came to blows with the snotty little woman at Petco when she told me that the only reason I had algae in my tanks was that my tanks were too dirty.  She tried to tell me that my water quality was poor and that I needed to test my water!  She also told me that you cannot tell the quality of water by Bettas as they were raised in dirty water in rice paddies!!!!.  My friend that had me there had to physically pull me out of there before I had a episode bad enough to cause me to be taken to jail or something.  I would not be surprised to be banned from the store.  PetSmart as usual was better but as usual it was hard to see the little ones unhappy.

Rose
When you get silly responses like that you know you are dealing with someone who is only there to get a paycheck and probably doesn't even have a fishtank at home! I know you keep your tanks clean... I have an algae problem in two of my tanks too and I gravel vac EVERY week and do 30-40% water changes. My tanks are CLEAN but still have algae. I have discovered that the one side of my split tank that has absolutely no algae also has a different light bulb than the others. It's a 15 watt pink "Aqua Glow" incandescent bulb. The others are 15 watt white bulbs. For some reason this makes a HUGE difference. I don't have florescent light fixtures so I don't know how florescent would work but I'm willing to put up with a little extra heat for algae control. I've changed over to all pink bulbs a few days ago. (btw, it doesn't make the tank look pink. It just looks slightly dimmer than the white bulb)
What drives me to nearly commit homicide is when I'm in Petsmart and listening to the salesperson recommend those stupid little "betta kits" which are nothing more than 1/2 gallon boxes and hand them a jar of flake food and those diluted expensive tiny bottles of "Betta Conditioner". As soon as the sales idiot leaves I pull customers aside and set them straight. I talked one lady into getting at least a 2 1/2 gallon tank and some Betta Bio-Gold and a bottle of NovAqua+ when her Betta would have ended up in a quart sized plastic bowl. She was told the Betta would be unhappy in a larger tank! I have "upsold" at least a dozen people since then. I do it for the Bettas. The customers mean well and don't want their pet to be unhappy, they are just misinformed right from the start.
I'm sure the sales staff rolls their eyes and runs to hide when they see me coming too!  ;D I don't really care if they think I'm a crazy fish lady! I do it for the poor babies in cups. There are a few associates there who care about the fish and give good advice. Too bad they couldn't always be the ones caring for the fish.
I still prefer to buy fish from cups just because it makes me feel good to know I probably saved them from an uphappy life in a bowl at best, death at worst.
 

COBettaCouple

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Good job phloxface - you show them! Tell the store manager that you should run the fish department - you do better for sales than the punch-in/punch-out people they have. We've done that with a few customers ourselves, letting them know a bigger tank doesn't just make their betta happier but makes them happier to because they'll enjoy their betta's character more - at least they listen, since the employees don't.
 

Phloxface

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Another big selling point to make is that a larger cycled tank requires much less maintainence than a bowl which needs cleaning daily or at least several times a week to keep the fish alive. Even the stress of constantly being moved about to clean the bowl will eventually kill them. I know some people have managed to keep Bettas for years in cold water bowls but I think that is not the norm. Most people I've talked to have had one Betta after another die in bowls and vases and can't figure out why. They blame the store for selling sick fish. It's not the store... my fish all came from Petsmart and some were visibly sick when I bought them and they are thriving! It is the cold water, cramped environment and stress of daily cleaning that kills them, not to mention Bettas jumping out of uncovered bowls (probably looking for a larger body of water). Clean water isn't going to keep your Betta alive. They need a calm place to call home were they are not being constantly disturbed or moved.
 

COBettaCouple

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Phloxface said:
They need a calm place to call home were they are not being constantly disturbed or moved.
Just like us. Yea, that's a definite up-sell. Who wouldn't want less maintenance?

eskielvr - how is spartacus? back in his tank now?
 
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Eskielvr

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Not yet. The ammonia levels in his 5 gallon are now down to 0, (they were 4 to 6ppm) but Nitrite levels are still high. I can't make out the reading though because it's like a really bright purplish/pink color, and the high readings on the card are bright pinkish. The water doesn't match any of the colors, but it's bright so I know it's pretty high. I didn't get any Nitrate readings though. Well, they're too low to amount to anything.

He's doing great though. I suck up his waste and other slimy looking debris out with a turkey baster, and when his water looks yucky (about 2X a week) I take out as much water as I can without moving him and add fresh, clean water treated with AmQuel+ and Novaqua+. His fins have no signs of tears, splits, or holes. In fact, it's healed back to the shape it's supposed to be, but the very ends are still light colored, like the tips are a little white and then next to the white they're red. His eyes have turned back to their normal color, no more red, and the fins next to his gills are starting to become speckled with color. And, I could swear he looks like he's a much darker/brighter blue color, too. Also, he seems to spread his fins out more in the vase than he did in the tank. Maybe I need to get a different filter for him?

I'm hoping I can move him back in his tank in no more than 2 weeks, max. It looks like his tank is half way cycled now. It's covered in a brown algae/diatom stuff and my Mystery snail is doing a great job with it. I don't have to feed them algae wafers anymore.
 

COBettaCouple

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Yea, the nitrite spike with ammonia down to 0 is a good sign. He'll be moving in soon for sure, glad he's doing great.
 
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