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bex101 03-03-2010 06:09 PM

new tank, Betta has velvet and the oto is getting fat.
(ok so i accidently posted this in the meet the community section the other night. maybe ill get more suggestions here thanks!)

It's been many yrs since I had the tank up and running. The tank has been running for a month, no problems cycling do to "stability" by seachem. The betta belongs to my six yr old and has a very strong personality for a fish. he will go flying to his food ring if you come near the tank and follow you if you're testing the water or looking for another fish. he (while not meanly) chases the tetras or schools with them, knocks the otos off the walls and takes the corys' food when he can, even if it's obvious she doesn't like it. we though the first week he was going to stay mostly in the floating log but he's proven that the tank is his and everyone else is just permitted.

our current issues 1)I figured out, unfortunately after I added the additional fish that, the Betta has velvet. .( treating with copper safe trying to keep the lights off) -
2)Also this week we noticed our female oto is looking rather large.( I would guess eggs but I don't really know) with these two issues going on any helpfull hints would be great
3) we had one major ph dip which we managed to fix by adding a handful of crushed coral to the filter.
4) The other problem is unless we put a bubbler under the heater it seems to drop to 76F. Thinking of moving the heater under the filter so the betta doesnt have to deal with the current of a bubbler. any ideas?
5) is there any good way of feeding tetras? i mix the food with a cup of water and slowly pour it in. about half the time they come for it, the rest of the time the corys get a good meal, if i leave it on top the betta eats it all.

the water parameters being tested with api master kit, and api copper test kits
ammonia - 0
nitrates-0 (for this one i have to use the strips unfortly dont have any drops)
kh- 3.5 dKH ( tap water is untestable so I thank the coral for this)
gh- we have been unable to test this with two different kits. our guess is it's just too low(the strips show it very low)
copper- (used to treat the velvet) 1.5 ppm

Hopefully I can post some pics of the oto, and betta's velvet.

bex101 03-03-2010 06:13 PM

Here are some general pictures of the fish over the last couple weeks, Ill try to get newer ones up soon.

iamntbatman 03-04-2010 03:25 AM

I don't really see velvet in those pictures, but in some of them it does look like ich (the bigger "salt grains" on the betta's fins). It doesn't matter much since both are external protozoan parasites and are treated in much the same way.

Try turning your heater sideways. The reason it's not working correctly is likely because it's heating the water around it, which causes that hot water to rise, which tricks the thermostat at the top of the heater into thinking the tank is warmer than it actually is, so it shuts off. Turning it sideways keeps the thermostat out of the flow of hot water rising off the heater so it gives a more accurate temperature. This is why the heater works better when an outside current (from the air stone) is placed under it.

Try feeding your fish at opposite ends of the tank. Pellets or flakes for the betta, slow-sinking pellets or crumbles for the tetras, sinking foods for the cories. Everyone should get something to eat that way.

Since you've got salt-sensitive fish in the tank, I would treat the ich simply through water changes and raising the temperature to the low to mid 80's (slowly, of course).

How low did your pH drop, exactly? What species of fish do you have other than the betta? Most tetras and cories prefer acidic, soft water so you might have been better off without the coral.

bex101 03-04-2010 08:24 AM

Thanks for the tip about the heater I just got this one so didn't even think about turning it my old one had to be upright.

The "salt" on the betta actualy is gone now its hard to see in photos but there are still some patches of the velvet near his head but its slowly going away.

The ph droped off the chart along with the kh. A steady 7.0 is better then seeing the fish gasping which was the clue that night since the water tested fine the day befor.

As for feeding them the betta eats whatever he can I have taken to feeding him less of his food, crumbling the corys algae waffers and sinking shrim and putting it in the grass matt they seem to hunt it out and the betta can't. The tetras i pour a cup of water into the tank befor i pour in the food mixed with some more water they seem to be picking up the cue finaly. But ill have to say they are the least agressive about eatting they rather sit back and watch everyone else.

Any idea about the oto? Is she just fat, sick, or does she have eggs as of last night she seems to have grown a bit again.

There are two oto, two cory, a betta, and 4 tetra (yes i know they are sopost to be kept in larger groups but we lost a couple the first week we had them for no apparent reason and since these guys seem happy I am not sure I want to add more)

iamntbatman 03-05-2010 02:57 AM

The oto is quite fat. Have you seen it pass waste since it bloated up to that size? You might try feeding it a smashed up, thawed frozen pea to see if that gets things going, if you follow me. It could be egg-bound though. The otos I've kept never really appeared visibly pregnant although I'm not sure even how to sex them so I might have had all males.

Anyone else know if that's what an egg-bound otocinclus looks like?

bex101 03-05-2010 08:00 AM

The bottom of the stomach is quite yellow and shes been hiding a lot. The male has been chasing her around the tank or mostly just staying near by.

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