Unsure if my fishy is sick... - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 15 Old 07-31-2008, 06:52 PM Thread Starter
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Unsure if my fishy is sick...

Hello everyone! I'm new to Betta fish raising and have been reading through these forums to help with raising Jim Hawkins, my Betta fish.

Last night he appeared to have Fin Rot and I started treating him with Fungus Clear today.

Normally, he is on the bottom of the tank. When I first had him, he had a little bowl with no heater. After about a week or two, he just lay at the bottom. The water was cold and after reading through a few topics, purchased a 2.5 gallon tank with a heater and thermometer. The temperature is set to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. For a few days, he was zipping around the tank making bubble nests.

About a week or so later, he would go back to just being at the bottom of the tank. And since then Jim has been doing that. He comes up for food, air, and sometimes to nip my finger.

I'm not totally sure what's going on with him. My mom suggested that I get him a few tank buddies to keep company. My gut tells me it's something else that's causing it.

Not really sure where to go from here and I'm not too crazy about going to Petco or another store for advice. Doesn't always seem too helpful.

Thanks in advance :)
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post #2 of 15 Old 07-31-2008, 07:41 PM
I have been told by people on the forum that the temperature should be 78-80 degrees. It may be that your fish is too warm.
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post #3 of 15 Old 07-31-2008, 08:18 PM
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Your fish is very much too warm. Also, what's your water change schedule been? Do you have a liquid test kit? We always like to recommend the API freshwater master kit instead of test strips, since those have always proven to be a waste of money and time.

This is the song that never ends...
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post #4 of 15 Old 07-31-2008, 11:50 PM Thread Starter
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The last few times have been 50% water change or more once a week or every other week. I did a near 100% water change 2 weeks ago because I freaked out over something. Ideally, I want a 25% water change once a week. I'm getting a lil bit better at using the vaccum so I don't take out too much water when cleaning gravel.

I purchased the API Ammonia test kit. 0 ppm were the results. I'll purchase the master kit tomorrow and check the rest (I didn't see the master kit till after I bought and used the Ammonia test). I've already lowered the heater of the tank. I'll keep it to around 80 degrees.

Does the heat stress out the fish? Or because I did a near 100% water change?

Thanks for your help :)
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post #5 of 15 Old 08-01-2008, 01:44 PM
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The water is definitely way too warm for him! Bettas usually tolerate from 76-84 degrees Farenheit.
If he does have fin rot, Fungus Clear, IME does not work and just makes a mess.
I hope he gets better!
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post #6 of 15 Old 08-01-2008, 04:30 PM
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Water changes for a 2.5 gallon should ideally be around 30-50% twice a week. Probably the combination of the two made him feel not so well, if your tank decided to cycle again after the 100% you could very well be in the middle of a nitrite spike.

Perhaps with increased (but not full) water changes the fit rot will subside since it's usually attributed to water quality problems.

This is the song that never ends...
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post #7 of 15 Old 08-01-2008, 06:34 PM
Originally Posted by jjelli1
If he does have fin rot, Fungus Clear, IME does not work and just makes a mess.
I have to disagree with that. I have a betta who had a stubborn case of fin rot when I got him. Darn pet stores ! I tried melafix (which in my opinion is just crap in a bottle) and maracyn TC (tetracycline) with no improvement. I then bought fungus clear, and after two treatments I am happy to report that the fin is healing well.

I guess what I am trying to say is that different bacteria respond to different medications, so I wouldn't rule out the fungus clear just because it didn't work for one fish. Melafix though....two times and your out for me. That stuff really did a number on my water though, and I didn't even see it because it's clear!

Good luck with your fish.
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post #8 of 15 Old 08-01-2008, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
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Test Results

Okay, I just did the testing with the master kit.

Ammonia came out to 0-0.25 ppm (more on the yellowish side)
Nitrite came out to 0.25 ppm
Nitrate came out to 5.0 ppm
pH came out to 7.8-8.0

I'm not sure whether I should get the pH down solution or just wait until I clear out the fungus clear.

Ok....I just tested the tap water...it's a pH of about 8.0-8.2 -_- One of my friends at PetCo asked me to look into mineral water for Jim. I'ma go purchase the pH down right away.

Temperature is at 84 degrees Fahrenheit.

Thank you soo much for your help :D
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post #9 of 15 Old 08-01-2008, 08:29 PM
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Yeah, you're smack dab in the middle of a cycle. Just keep an eye on things and change your water if the nitrite gets higher.

Do not use pH down, you can cause massive pH swings with that stuff and then boom, the whole tank crashes. Try getting small piece of mopani driftwood, boil it for a few hours, then cool it and put it in there. The tannins can naturally help your pH to drop.

This is the song that never ends...
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post #10 of 15 Old 08-03-2008, 12:35 AM Thread Starter
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I ended up using the pH solution on the tank and it just created a total mess. The water quality just looks really, really icky. My fishy wasn't too happy with it either. I'ma go with the driftwood.

Jim is in a separate jar for the moment that had been dechlorinated and used a bit of the pH down. He's not really eating, but he's movin' a bit more. He's a real trooper for taking everything.

I'ma get some mineral water and test it before setting up another jar so I don't have to worry about using pH down.

Should I let the tank continue to cycle? How should I proceed from here? I feel like things are just really complicated, but gradually improving.
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