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FAQs on Betta Diseases/Health 39

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Related FAQs: Betta Disease 1, Betta Disease 2, Betta Disease 3, Betta Disease 4, Betta Disease 5, Betta Disease 6, Betta Disease 7, Betta Disease 8, Betta Disease 9 , Betta Disease 10 , Betta Disease 11 , Betta Disease 12 , Betta Disease 13 , Betta Disease 14 , Betta Disease 15 , Betta Disease 16 , Betta Disease 17 , Betta Disease 18, Betta Disease 19, Betta Disease 20, Betta Disease 21, Betta Health 22, Betta Health 23, Betta Health 24, Betta Health 25, Betta Health 26, Betta Health 27, Betta Health 28, Betta Health 29, Betta Health 30, Betta Health 31, Betta Health 32, Betta Health 33, Betta Health 34, Betta Health 35, Betta Health 36, Betta Health 37, Betta Health 38, Betta Disease Causes/Etiologies: Determining/Diagnosing, Environmental (By far the largest cat.), Nutritional, Viral/Cancer, Infectious (Bacterial, Fungal) , Parasitic: Ich/White Spot, Velvet; Senescence/Old Age, Cures/Curatives/Treatments,
FAQs on Betta Medicines
: Betta Medicines period, Antibiotics/Antibacterials, Anti-Protozoals (Metronidazole, eSHa...), Copper, Formalin, Malachite Green, Anthelminthics, Organophosphates, Salts, All Other Betta Med.s,

 

Salt Dip/Bath for Fungus on Betta?       2/19/20
Hello my WWM friends!
I have a freshwater fish question, because being a reef aquarist who hasn't had a FW tank for 15-20 years has left me stupid. This fish has an obvious fungus on its fins, but I don't know its history to know exactly how to treat it (previous injury, precursor bacterial infection). I hate fish medications, so I've been thinking of trying to use salt water dip and/or bath, but I don't feel confident in doing it. I was hoping one of you folks could give me some very specific directions, measurements of salt in teaspoons instead of ounces, etcetera. If people would just have good water and stock conscientiously, their fish wouldn't get things like fungus.
The reason I don't know the history of the fish, is that I got it from a newly homeless guy at Starbucks several days ago. He just gave it to the first person who would take it. I was certain it was dead. It was just floating and I saw no gill movement at all. The thermometer growing on the end of my hand, combined with knowing the weather forecast, estimated that the water couldn't have been warmer than 45F. The guy insisted that the fish wasn't dead, so I touched the fish. The fish twitched slightly, then
finally looked like it was breathing (but still floating and looking almost dead), so I agreed to take it. I couldn't leave Starbucks because I was with a client, so I got a tall cup with a little hot water in the bottom, then sat the container in the top of the cup for the steam to act as a heater. The fish started looking like it was alive as it got warmer, mostly still floating but occasionally in a normal position. I took it home, set up a little pico tank from my tank junk room, using mostly RODI (I needed FW bacteria, so I used some brown water from a 50g that has been housing just a leeching out 3 ft piece of FW driftwood, and a philodendron vine that has attached its roots to the wood... maybe I should put the plant in the Betta tank to eat nitrate).
Now the fish is swimming around, is eating, and looks excited when it sees me approaching the tank. The guy must have had it for a while before becoming homeless, because it's much bigger than the Bettas in the pet stores, and the canister of food he gave me is nearly empty. I don't want to keep the fish, but no one is going to take it while it is sick. I just hope I don't accidentally kill it.
Thank you in advance for the salt dip/bath treatment advice, other treatment advise, any other random advice, or advice about how to have a conversation without making it about reef stuff.
Sincerely,
Forrest M.
<Okay; in terms of a saline lavage, bath, you could use a level teaspoon of salt (table or marine aquarium) in a gallon of water, leave the Betta there for ten minutes. IF you have a refractometer that goes down to a low reading, this fish can easily tolerate at spg. of 1.003. For much more re their husbandry, please start reading here: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/BettaInfectDisF4.htm
and as much of the above-linked files (in blue) that you deem useful. Bob Fenner>
Re: Salt Dip/Bath for Fungus on Betta?      2/20/20

Thank you, Bob. The info about the refractometer is extremely helpful!
Sincerely, Forrest
<Cheers mate. I do hope your Betta rallies. BobF>

Stubborn Betta fin rot (RMF?)<<Agreed>>    1/11/20
Hi Wet Web Crew, I need some advice as how to proceed. My Betta started sleeping draped over the suction cup on his heater.... which became an explosive case of fin rot. Water quality is carefully managed, he has 5 gallons, plants to sleep on,single occupant. I blockaded his heater so that he can’t get to it. He spent 5 days quarantined in Methylene Blue/salt. Only a little bit of improvement. So now I’ve just finished 5 days of Maracyn 1 and Maracyn 2 together. He has improved further, there is some regrowth, but there are still 5 small spots of blood at the end of the rays. What would you do now? Wait, or treat another 5 days of Maracyn 1/2? I worry about prolonged treatment but don’t want the fin rot to take over again either. I also have Kanaplex but I’ve never used it. Thanks!!
<Would agree that this looks like Finrot, given then appearance and the blood spots around the fin rays. Treating Finrot isn't normally too bad, and repeating Maracyn 1 and 2 together should be a good next move. I'm not surprised Methylene Blue and salt had little impact. However, Finrot is, as you presumably know, caused by the environment. It's not a disease that infects one fish from another. So your main job is to identify the cause. With Bettas, common causes including water quality (filtration is essential, with ammonia and nitrite needing to be zero) and low temperatures (Bettas must be kept warm, 25-28 C/77-82 F being right). Cold air can also cause problems, though not usually Finrot, but in any case, do check the air above the tank is damp and warm (a reasonably secure hood should do this well). Finrot can also be caused by physical damage including nippy tankmates, and with Bettas, there's almost no justification for keeping them in anything other than their own aquarium. Don't forget to remove carbon from the filter while medicating. Cheers, Neale.>

Questions for 2 Bettas
Hey WWM, I am a super long time reader of 10 years. I love reading thru your site and have learned a lot since I first came across your site. I have a hobby of buying sick betta fish on occasion and helping them recover. I have a pretty good success rate and have helped about 10 recover, but I have 2 I have been working on who aren't getting better.
<Let's see...>
My first fellow is a double tail I got 2 weeks ago w/ swim bladder issues.
He is constipated and has only pooped a few meager bits since I've had him.
He spends his time floating at the surface, sometimes on his side, and hiding behind the filter. He does eat and has a normal betta appetite. He isn't really bloated much. I have fasted him, I have fed him daphnia (which in the past makes my Bettas poop when they can't go), I have done Epsom salt baths. He gets a water change every other day due to the tank size.
Nothing is helping. I have only done Epsom salt baths twice. Going thru WWM I see you suggest instead to add directly to the tank, which I have been hesitant about because I have seen people warn against that. He is in a 2.5 gal hospital tank right now. Do you think this would be more beneficial than baths, and how much should I add, and for how long? Or should I try something else?
<If it were me, mine, I would go ahead w/ the direct addition of Epsom Salt here (half a tsp. replaced when you change out water), and likely dose w/ Metronidazole and likely Praziquantel... to cover all microbial, parasitic, worm bases>
My next fish is a Petco-version of a black orchid betta that I got at the end of the October. He had been there for a while with some nasty fin rot.
In the past I have been able to treat aggressive fin rot with Maracyn and Maracyn 2. This rot will not go away no matter what I do. I have tried Maracyn, Kanaplex, daily water changes, Microbe Lift Artemiss, and Methylene blue baths and swabbing the blue directly on his fins. He hasn't had any antibiotics since November. The next thing I am trying is Doxycycline from Thomas Labs. Initially the rot stopped after 2 rounds of Maracyn, but since came back and has only either slowed, or stopped for a bit and returned. This fish hasn't had any regrowth. The tail is almost gone and I fear body rot and death. My next step would be to take him to an actual fish vet, however I can't find one near me who won't charge over
$200 for the initial visit. He is in a cycled 3 gallon. I do believe the doxy is going to kill the beneficial bacteria, right?
<Might set nitrifiers back, yes>
Anything else I can do to save him should doxy fail?
<Yes; I would add a good deal (like a couple teaspoons of aquarium salt (artificial SeaSalt would be better/best) and a pro-rated dose of Metronidazole here>
Also neither fish has any tank mates. The only other living things in their tanks is some Marimo moss balls from Aquatic Arts.
<These I'd remove; the salt may work the moss woe>
Thank you for your time and advice!
<Thank you for your efforts. Bob Fenner>
Re: Questions for 2 Bettas

Thank you so much, Bob. I'm going to put some Epsom salt in my constipated boy's tank today and then look into the other medications. I'm concerned for my boy with fin rot because yesterday I noticed some fungus or what I think is fungus on his fins but I tried to stay positive and ignored it and gave him his water change as usual.
<Aye; w/o sampling (and often culture) it is near impossible to guess what  group of organisms are/may be involved here. And hence effective treatments>
But this morning it has returned and it's probably going to get worse... I'm really worried that he's not going to make it with the way this fungus is spreading.
<The salt use should help; at least forestall worsening>
His Doxycycline from Thomas Labs should arrive in the mail today so he will be started on it when I get home. He does still eat and greets me but spends most of his time resting on leaves.
<Eating is a very good sign>
I attached a bad pic of him from yesterday where you can see a dot of white 'fungus' on the tiny strand of tail fin in the middle (the tank is acrylic and water spots won't go away so please ignore that). That little piece of his tail has since shriveled away. Again thanks for any help!!
<Yeah; the "fungus" could be many things... even just body mucus from... "irritation".
Do stay positive and keep us in the loop. BobF>

Re: Questions for 2 Bettas      12/27/19
One last question (or a few) before I play the waiting game with these boys and their treatments. Thanks for reading thru it all as I like to be very thorough.
<Sure>
How long should I leave the Epsom salt in the aquarium? I do every other day water changes for him so I should be re-adding whatever amount of salt may be lost with those changes? I mix the salt in the new water and dissolve before adding. I usually do a half gallon change since he is in a 2.5 gal.
It has nothing in it aside from a HOB filter, a floating leaf and floating log. Removed the moss balls since I added the Epsom salt.
<I'd put half a tsp. in this system and replace the percentage removed when you do water changes>
For the metro and Prazi, I have PraziPro recommended to me a lot and Metroplex is probably the easiest to get when it comes to that med. Do y'all recommend both of these?
<Do search/read on WWM re both... these are good, useful medications, but not items that should be used casually, continuously>
I talk mainly to other aquarists on Facebook and I feel people religiously flock to Seachem there so I try to remain skeptic with everything.
<Skepticism, even a bit of cynicism I find healthy. Seachem as a co. is "the real thing". Real products, real science>
For Mr Fin Rot I'm debating removing his current filter when I start the doxy treatment and keep running it in a small tank and feeding it ammonia so I don't lose my good bacteria OR putting the media in another aquarium for the moment. Would the latter be a bad move if the fin rot is contagious?
<I wouldn't feed the system ammonia. The fish will provide plenty. In fact, I would monitor ammonia and possibly place or filter through Zeolite to remove it>
I have 8 other betta tanks and a cichlid tank going right now.
I can always steal seeded media later too. Thomas Labs recommends a water change before adding each new treatment of doxy (which would be daily) so I am ok leaving his tank temporarily without the cycled media that is probably going die anyway.
<I do agree w/ this regimen. I'd likely treat every three days and do the water change outs right before then>
Thanks for the help, I really do appreciate it. WWM has been very inspiring and a tremendous source of info for me all these years.
<Am very glad for this. You and other petfish friends are what we endeavor for. B>

Re: Questions for 2 bettas     1/9/20
Good evening, here is an update for you. My fin rot betta finished his doxycycline treatment. He is acting a little more normal and swimming up to the edge of the tank to meet me and beg for food. Hopefully the rot is done for. He seems all right, and he is at least feeling more peppy. I am not too worried about him right now.
<Good. With improved water quality, better nutrition, time going by alone should see this Betta improving>
My betta with suspected constipation and/or swim bladder issues I am more concerned about. It has been a few days since I weaned him off epsom salt in the tank (should I keep him on epsom salt?),
<Not indefinitely, no. I would limit such exposure to no more than a couple weeks>
and we finished a round of prazipro. While he did have some more regular poops with epsom salt in his
tank, he remains floating on his side. There is no improvement on swimming ability. He still spends his day floating and hiding.
<From whatever cause/s (genetic, trauma, pathogenic), he may have suffered long/er term gas bladder damage>
Recently he has been less reactive to stimulus- an example would be he is facing a corner and it is feeding time. I nudge him so he knows to move and he just sits there without moving. He will remain in one spot when other fish would flee or move. He only eats sometimes. It is probably hard for him to know it is there, yet even when it is right in front of his face he ignores it. Other times he goes right for it (he can't exactly swim to his food- he really just jerks his body a few times and hopes he gets to where he wants to be).
I make sure to take the time to push the food in front of his face so he can eat it and remove any he may ignore or sinks to the bottom.
<I'd leave off w/ further chemical treatments here>
I really want to help him but despite all the typical things one would do for constipation or SBD, he hasn't recovered a bit. I am considering euthanasia if he doesn't show signs of recovery in a month or so. Surely, a humane death is better than spending his life floating and hiding and not being able to live a normal betta life.
<IF it's your perception that this fish/animal in your care is suffering:
http://www.wetwebmedia.com/euthanasia.htm>
Is there something else that could be wrong? Maybe something happened at the store, at the fish farm, during shipping, etc to cause this.
<Yes; many possible inputs>
When I bought him, he was floating just as he is now. Thanks for all your help.
<Thank you for your caring, sharing. Bob Fenner>

Re: Questions for 2 bettas     1/20/20
Just writing to tell you I decided to put down my SBD/constipated betta down earlier than planned. He started to refuse food and was not getting any better. I knew it would be better to let him go than continue his life floating and hiding all day. My other guy is doing well, no sign of any rot returning.
<Thank you for your note. BobF>

911 Betta Help      12/11/19
Hello WWM Crew,
Background:
20 gallon tall tank
<Mmm; Betta's are better kept in shallower/less deep systems... it's a haul to make it to the surface to grab gulps of air>
Filtered and heated
CO2 day —airstone at night
<Ahh!>
Planted
Stock: albino bristle nosed Pleco, 2 adfs, 1 mystery snail, 1 Amano shrimp, half moon dragon scale betta, sword tail
My betta has always had fin rot ever since I got him almost a year ago.
<? Unusual... are you sure this appearance is not some type of coloration of the fins?>

I have been able to keep it under control and keep it from progressing and had it come and go. Never had regrowth I think but never done any treatments. Only water changes every week and prime.
<This sounds like (it should be) a fine set up, maintenance program>
Last week I got my tank back in order after letting it go for two weeks where I didn’t do water changes and run my CO2. I had my parameters fail and an algae outbreak. Now that is cleaned up and my parameters are stable
again. I fed everything but did not really pay attention to how everything looked. After I realized my Bettas fins were destroyed and he had a white spot on his fins.
<"A" as in a single spot I take it>
I quarantined him in a one gallon and did daily 50% water changes for a week with BettaFix.
<Not a fan of this API product, nor Melaleuca for medicine period>

Things are not looking better and the white spot has grown. It’s not fuzzy just white. His right eye is bulging and when taking pics I noticed his scales are a golden shiny color. It’s not dusted but solid except for on his lower fin below his body where it is dusted looking. His fins are shredded and crumpled down.
<... could this fish, system be infested w/ Velvet, Amyloodinium?>
After noticing this I couldn’t tell if it was velvet so I looked at the swordtail which I added two months ago. He didn’t look like this when I got him but is now covered in a dusting of gold shiny metallic. It was really hard to get a picture of as he is constantly moving and the flash light has to reflect on it just right. He is black with a blue hue in the right light and a metallic silver eye normally. But now there is gold all over him in the right light you see it.
<I would treat for Velvet>
First I want to address the betta. I think he has multiple problems, I’m not sure what, I don’t know what to use to treat them, or in what order. It could be bacterial, fungal, Velvet. He has the white spot, bulging right eye, and shredded fins. He wants to live I can tell and is trying to hang in there. He is eating again but wasn’t for the first few days of quarantine. He needs to be medicated at this point and I think I need to make it the right moves or it will progress to far before I can get to it.
<I would return this fish to the 20 (more stable) and treat all for (just) Velvet for now... there are a few approaches; from depriving light to less-than discriminate dyes and metal solutions. You may well have to remove the snails, frogs to elsewhere, perhaps your plants (and run them through a dip/bath to remove the Dinoflagellates on returning)>
Please give me your insight with what you think all he has and what medicine as well as brand names to use.
<I'd have you search, read re "Velvet" (for freshwater) of WWM, esp. reviewing this list of medications by Neale Monks: http://www.wetwebmedia.com/FWSubWebIndex/fwfishmeds.htm
AND carefully pre- and re-reading the manufacturers information on use>
Pics below include:
Both tanks
<Both? You mention one, and a bowl for treatment. You provide an image of the tank... am not a fan of round/smooth pebbles as substrate... Is the filter here keeping ammonia, nitrite at 0.0 ppm? Nitrate under 20 ppm?>
Betta a month ago at his maintained fin rot state
<I see this>
Betta now with gold coloring on scales and dusting in lower fin
<Can't make out the gold dusting>

White spot on tail fin 7 days ago when moved into quarantine And it now Bulging eye
<Okay; seen>
Sword tail gold dusting
<Again, not discernible (by me). Am going to ask Neale here to review all, present his own response. Bob Fenner>



911 Betta Help     /Neale
<<It is not obvious to me that the Swordtail is sick at all. Velvet is usually quite obvious (think: icing sugar) and infected fish almost always 'flash' (move rapidly) against rocks as if trying to scratch themselves.
Heavy ventilation of the gill covers is usually obvious too, because Velvet infects the gills almost before anything else. Swordtails are moderately demanding by community tank standards: they are active swimmers, so a tank
at least 2.5 ft, and ideally 3+ feet in length is surely essential. They despise high temperatures, so best kept around 22-25 C (72-77 F) but no higher. Hard, alkaline water is essential. Like other livebearers, they're sensitive to 'old' water and prone to mysterious ailments, such as wasting away, in stuffy or overstocked tanks. Your Betta just looks like a specimen with indifferent genetics. Colouration is normal enough, just not uniform, and the raggedy edges seem to be genetic, rather than the result of Finrot (which would tend to expose fin rays that look like fine bones, as well as patches of white dead tissue and pinkish, inflamed areas). I don't see obvious eye bulging, but if it's just the one eye, that's most likely caused by an injury, and should go down by itself. The use of Epsom Salt
can help to reduce swelling. A dose of 1-3 teaspoons per 5 gallons/20 litres will do the trick. Note that Epsom Salt isn't the same thing as tonic, table, sea or cooking salt. It can be purchased inexpensively online or via drugstores. As for treating Velvet, commercial medications such as eSHa EXIT will do the trick, but with livebearers, if they're all you're keeping, adding salt at a dose of 2-5 gram/litre will do the job with less risk of stress. Indeed, marine salt mix added to livebearer tanks has a mild tonic effect on these fish, even the true freshwater ones like Swordtails, and can be used for some weeks without risk. Cheers, Neale.>>

Constipated Betta       4/5/19
Hi Crew!
<Hello again!>
I’m having a problem with Chester again. The problem he had with his open Gil in February has been resolved and has been doing great until the last few weeks.
<Good to know.>
Chester became constipated because I over fed him. I fed him a variety of foods i.e.. Shrimp, bloodworms, pellets one time a day, but now I know I fed too much at a time.
<Understood.>
I keep him in a 5 gallon, heated, filtered, lightly planted, bare bottom tank so I can see when he’s pooped.
The tank has been set up since 1/24/19. Since 3/15 he has been having the constipation problems. On 3/17 I added Epsom salt to his tank, which I left in the tank until I did A water change on 3/20. Since then I had fasted him a couple days and he’s pooped a few times. Over the last week I started feeding shrimp or pellets one day and frozen Daphnia the next. When ever I fed the Daphnia he would poop the next day, but would not poop on the other foods.
<Daphnia are a 'high fibre' food of sorts because of their tiny shells. Definitely worth offering on a regular basis to any small fish. Brine shrimp work well, too.>
Now he last pooped on this past Saturday 3/30 and I last fed him Daphnia On Sunday 3/31. So here we are. Now he’s not even pooping after the Daphnia and he hasn’t eaten for three days.
<Patience...>
I’m not sure what I should do next. Seems like fasting alone never makes him poop. Don’t know if I should add more Epsom salt. If so how much and how long.
<1-3 teaspoons per 5 gallons/20 litres; use indefinitely. Remember when doing water changes to replace the Epsom Salt on a per bucket basis!>
If I should fast him longer.
<A few days is fine, but once using Epsom salt, things should get moving quickly.>
I have Anubias in his tank too. Also I want to transfer him to a 10 gallon, as in my opinion the water chemistry is not that stable in a 5 gallon.
<Agreed.>
I’ve lost the cycle a couple times. I’ve always kept Bettas in 10 gallon. Should I wait?
<Can't think why.>
I don’t want to stress him even more. I just added the plants to the tank 3/15 cause his fins had torn on the plastic plants. But all healed quickly though. So he’s gone through changes.
<Bettas are pretty adaptable fish. I'd change the tank, but put all the old tank's water in it, and then add new water, so any water chemistry changes are minimal.>
He’s swimming around fine and always exploring and begging for food. He never had swim bladder problems. He is just a little bloated in front of his ventrals.
I appreciate your help.
Thanks
Donetta
<Hope this helps, Neale.>

Re: Constipated Betta     5/27/19
Hi again, I’m sending an email on this previous email so you can see the history of my communications with you. Let me know if I should start a new email for the future.
<Either way suits. A quick recap in a sentence or two might be faster though!>
Chester’s constipation is better.
<Good.>
I still add the 1/4 tsp of Epsom salt per gallon. If I feed more than two Brine shrimp at a time he won’t poop by the next day. So literally I’m feeding once per day two Brine shrimp, two bloodworms or Mysis shrimp and Daphnia once per week. All frozen food.
<Sounds good.>
He can’t tolerate pellets.
<No great loss, but if you're using frozen foods and no flake/pellet foods, dosing with vitamins is wise. Certainly, aim for as great a variety as possible.>
I use Harari Frozen food and the protein % is low at 6.9% for Spirilina Brine shrimp. Is this ok? Is this enough food?
<The low protein level isn't a problem. We feed fish far more protein than they need (much as we do when feeding ourselves) but lack of greens in their diet can mean vitamins are lacking. Flake and pellets have these added, but generally live and frozen foods do no.>
Do I have any other options?
<See above; vitamins are available, such as Selcon, and these will help out.>
I don’t see any other options or he’ll get constipated. His colors aren’t as vibrant as they use to be.
<Again, vitamins in the form of beta carotene are crucial to how fish make red colour pigment. Crustaceans are a good source, including brine shrimp; you can also try using needle nose forceps to offer tiny bits of prawn or shrimp. Fish will often take from these forceps because they are less threatening than fingers.>
In addition, he seems to be loosing scales on his face at the top of his head and on both sides of his face and under his chin area. The green coloring is gone under his chin.
He’s alone in a 10 gallon, planted, filtered, heated to 80 degrees, bare bottom tank. Fully cycled I clean the tank every week. He’s swimming around fine, but I do notice that he breathes heavily at times. His gills really move. However the Ammonia is zero.After I clean his tank, debris seems to settle on top of the water. I have two filters on both ends of the tank with the outlet pointed at the glass. The day or two after water changes I skim the top of the water.
I appreciate you giving me advice.
Thanks!
<Most welcome. Neale.>

Re: Constipated Betta      6/10/19
Hi again,
<Donetta>
I’m not sure what else I can do about my Betta Chester’s constipation. He’s a lone fish in a 10 gal, heated, filtered, planted, bare bottom tank. I feed him only frozen foods now because that’s all he can tolerate.
<... have you considered a modicum of Epsom Salt?>
His constipation started with overfeeding that I’ve since corrected. At this sites suggestion I added and keep 1/4tsp Epsom salt per gallon to the water beginning 4/20/19. I feed literally 2 Brine Shrimp, 2 Mysis Shrimp, 2 bloodworms or Daphnia. For Daphnia I defrost it pour on a napkin. Scrap a small portion up with a spoon and roll it in a tiny ball the size of a pellet. In addition I now add vitamins to his food at your suggestion. I was feeding this once per day. Sometimes he still wouldn’t poop by the next day, I have a bare bottom tank and see everything , so I started feeding him this amount every other day. In addition I bumped up the Epsom salt to .5 tsp per gallon on 5/30 which was 10 days ago.
<Ah, good. I might even try a higher concentration of MgSO4 as a bath... temporary immersion (like a minute). Freshwater fishes, unlike marine, don't drink their environment to a great extent>
Well he pooped yesterday and this morning it was gone. So my conclusion is that he ate it.
<Ahh!>
I know it did not dissolve over time, cause I know what that looks like. Makes me wonder if he’s done this before or is he just so hungry with the small amount of food that he’s been given and it’s the first time.
I don’t know what I should do. I appreciate all the help.
Thanks
Donetta
<I would stay the course you're on for now. Read up re the concentrated salt dip. Bob Fenner>

Re: Constipated Betta     7/10/19
Hi it’s Donetta again,
<Hello Donetta,>
Needing more help with my Betta Chester. He’s a lone fish in a 10 gal, heated, filtered, planted, bare bottom tank.
<All sounds fine.>
I gave him the concentrated Epsom salt bath on Thursday’s suggested. I’m feeding him a variety of frozen food with the added vitamins every other day and he has BMs every other day. He’s not bloated, but he was starting to float with his tail raising up so I gave him the bath. The floating went away by the next day.
<That's good.>
In addition, he tore three of his fins on his Anubias plant roots.
<Seems deeply unlikely. Anubias aren't sharp, and the roots curl around rocks, so he'd need be doing something real peculiar. More to the point, fish fins are slippery, and don't easily catch in anything much.>
They didn’t heal up, but developed a little rotting.
<Which underlines the reality that some sort of Finrot or equivalent opportunistic infection is at work here. Damaged fins aren't a problem for healthy fish in clean water -- they heal with little more difficulty than your hair grows back after a trim.>
He tore them in May. I added stress coat to the water, but they still didn’t heal.
<Stress Coat is one of these products sold to aquarists that sounds like it's magic -- and that's always a good sign you're looking at marketing rather than science! It's a good water conditioner. Buy beyond that, stuff about aloe vera and so forth really doesn't mean much. What you need when dealing with Finrot is an antibacterial or antibiotic. In the US, antibiotics can be purchased in pet shops, for example Maracyn II and Kanaplex, while outside of the US you're need a prescription for equivalent products. So outside the US we tend to use reliable antibacterials, my favourite being eSHa 2000, but Waterlife Myxazin is another popular choice. Basically, avoid anything that sounds like a cheap cure-all: salt, tea-tree oil, aloe vera, etc.>
On Saturday I moved him to a small 1.5 gallon tank so I could do daily water changes with added salt to help him heal.
<Salt is irrelevant here.>
Once in this small tank I really got to see his faded colors.
<I bet.>
I don’t think I’m feeding him enough with only 2 Brine shrimp, 2 blood worms or 2 Mysis shrimp every other day, but if I feed two days in a row he won’t have a BM the next day. He didn’t have a BM after the Epsom bath. I don’t think it’s anything else in there. He use to have a BM everyday. Is it ok for him to have a BM every other day?
<What's a BM?>
His fins looks somewhat translucent and He seems really skinny and week even with the added vitamins.
<See above re: treating bacterial infections.>
So I put him in the 1.5 gal on Saturday and started doing daily 75% water changes with 1.5 teaspoons salt per gallon the heal his fins.
<Salt doesn't heal fins. It has some value as a treatment against Whitespot when used at 2 gram per litre, but beyond that, the addition of salt is one of those cheap-but-useless things that won't do much.>
This worked well with another Betta I had and his fins healed in a week.
<I doubt the salt is why he got better. As stated above, a healthy fish will heal its fins back without problems. It's the equivalent of your skin healing over a cut.>
Well Chester was very lethargic on Saturday. He crashed at the bottom of the tank some. Then Monday he was better almost like his normal self. Then this morning he has clamped fins, yawning and darting some around the tank. Maybe he has a parasite. He yawns in the main tank sometimes too. I’ve done daily water changes on Saturday, Sunday and Monday so the water is clean.
<Good stuff. But do check ammonia and nitrite levels -- if these aren't zero, Finrot is a common symptom of the stress they cause. Goes without saying that non-zero ammonia and nitrite will slow down, even reverse, healing.>
I was thinking When I change the water tonight that I should remove the salt.
<Adding salt at trivial levels (i.e., below 2 gram/litre) does nothing much, so I'd discontinue this.>
After that I don’t know what to do.
<See above.>
I was thinking about using the Paraguard I have since his fins have not healed after two months. That medicine covers parasites, bacterial, fungus and virus infections.
<Paraguard is not an antibiotic, but it is a fairly reliable antibacterial (antimicrobial, even). So much better than salt and wishful thinking! It's not going to turn around a severe infection, but I think it's definitely worth a shot here. If your fish is still active and eating, there's a good chance he can recover.>
Here’s a picture with his tore fins, however his color looks good in the picture. He is definitely more pale and frail looking in person. However he has splits/ tears on every fin and it’s getting worse.
Thanks again
Donetta
<Hope this helps. Cheers, Neale.>

Betta open Gill cover      2/8/19
Good morning Y’all! I’m Donetta and back with a new Betta named Chester!
<Donetta with a Betta called Chester sounds like a Marx Brothers song!>
I set my tank up two weeks ago on 1/24/19. He’s a lone fish in a 5 gal, heater, filtered tank with a plastic plant. I cycled his tank with Tetra safe start which cycled in three days as always showing 0 Amm, 0 Nitrite and 10 nitrate.
<All good.>
Chester is a hmpk and super aggressive and has flared tremendously at his shadow for the past two weeks. I started turning on the light about four days ago for 4-5 hours per day trying to get him use to it. He seems like he is settling down a little bit. I also put Indian Almond extract that I make to help him feel more comfy. I also feed his a variety of foods i.e. pellets, Brine shrimp, bloodworms, and Mysis shrimp.
<Good.>
Last night I came home and noticed one of his Gill covers is a little open and flared out. He eases up to the glass and places the Gill on it ever so lightly to try and rub it. It’s not like flashing, put it’s definitely bothering him. Besides that he is eating and swimming normally. He blows huge bubble nests! Moving around very actively and lots of aggressive posturing. He it stressed by those shadows. I put on an aquarium background with plants and rocks to try and break up the shadows. It helps some, but I figure he just needs more time to adjust.
<Perhaps.>
I had to wait two weeks to clean his tank with the Tetra Safe Start. I decided to go ahead and clean the tank last night ( 1 day early) after I saw the open Gill cover. I went to clean the tank and had a problem with getting my siphon started. This kicked up all this debris. I couldn’t believe how much debris I saw. The brown poo I understood, but there was the white floating debris too and lots of it. I was confused. I never cleaned a Betta tank with this much debris.
<Is there a lot of (live) plants in here? Did you use Indian Almond leaves or similar? Both can/will decay to produce organic mulm. Not in itself dangerous -- indeed, it plays host to useful bacteria -- but too much can clog up filter inlets, compromising water quality. Regardless, any organic debris that settles in the tank does indicate insufficient mechanical filtration. Again, some fish don't need or water a lot of water turnover, which means that debris collects in their aquarium because it isn't sucked into the filter. But if you want a debris-free substrate, increasing mechanical filtration is the key, perhaps alongside more frequent water changes to siphon out debris.>
I did have an incident with the Mysis shrimp. It was the first time I used that food. I believe some of it fell to the bottom. It’s white so it was hard to see, no way did I think it could be that much. I ended up changing 80% of the water. I know this is a no no, but I just couldn’t leave all that gunk in the tank.
<Changing that much water is absolutely fine so long as water chemistry and water temperature aren't dramatically altered. After all, to paraphrase a Greek philosopher, a wild fish doesn't swim in the same river twice! They're constantly exposed to new water at varying rates, and to some degree, can adapt to slight changes without too much bother. On the other hand, cleaning the filter out too severely, which can get rid of the bacteria, is a no-no, but the water itself isn't a problem.>
I still think there is plenty more, but with my siphon issue I couldn’t clean properly. The tank is bare bottom so all this stuff was floating in the water column. I’m getting a new siphon today. Anyway when I changed the water I put in stress coat in hopes to soothe his Gill, Indian almond leaves extract. I also added a probiotic called Eco balance that I’ve wanted to use.
<Cool.>
I read that his Gill Problem could be bacterial.
<It can be, but is more often environmental. Most often happens when fish are exposed to high ammonia or nitrate, or cramped conditions, and perhaps high nitrate and low oxygen levels. So while some parasites can damage the gill lamellae, notably Velvet, I'd be looking at environmental causes first.>
The open cover happen in the span of 14 hours. I have Kanaplex at home, but I didn’t want to jump to that. If this can heal with clean water I’d rather just do that.
<This would be my approach, yes.>
I checked his water param.s before I did his water change and I had 0 Am and looked like 20ppm Nitrate. I purchased him from Petco. He looked and behaved normally, however for curiosity I tested the water in his cup he came in and the water was very dark green. It was 4 or 8ppm. Maybe this is affecting his Gills too.
<4-8 ppm nitrate is trivially low, so unlikely a stress factor. On the other hand, virtually no urban domestic water supply I'm aware of has nitrate that low, so unless you're using spring water or something, I'd be suspicious of any test kit that registers the nitrate this low.>
Glad y’all are here as always, this is my 5th Betta and I’ve inquired here about three of them. I remember Bob told me read the facts and I did. I’ve read over 90% of all of them!
<Cool.>
Thanks Bob!
<I've cc'ed him.>
Thank you!
Donetta
<Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Betta open Gill cover (RMF, alternative views?)      2/9/19

Good morning Neal! Thanks for responding.
<Welcome.>
Glad to know the problem is probably more likely environmental. To clarify, I tested the cup water that I purchased Chester (got to look up the Marx Brothers :) in it was the Ammonia that was 4-8ppm not nitrate. It was terrible.
<Got you now. 4-8 ppm ammonia would stress, probably kill most fish quickly.>
When I got home, Chester’s Gill was still sticking out, but now I see laboring in his breathing now. He’s slowing down. He swims around, but taking breaks to rest on leaves now and then. I added 1 TBS of Aquarium salt to the 5 gallons. I hope he pulls through.
<As do I; I would perhaps stick with optimal living conditions rather than medicating. Curled gill covers often don't return to normal (especially with bigger fish) but in themselves don't adversely affect the fish in question.>
Donetta
<Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Betta open Gill cover (RMF, alternative views?)      2/9/19

Sorry I realized I missed something! No I have a fake plant with lots of leaves. I didn’t put in an Indian almond leaf, I made an extract first by soaking it in hot water. Then pouring in the liquid.
Thanks again
<Understood. The muck is coming from something, perhaps uneaten food as you suggested. Stirring the substrate and siphoning the muck out would be useful. A turkey baster makes a great spot-cleaning tool if that's not practical. Cheers, Neale.>
Re: Betta open Gill cover (RMF, alternative views?)<<Let's see>>      2/9/19

Good morning Y’all! I’m Donetta and back with a new Betta named Chester!
<Donetta with a Betta called Chester sounds like a Marx Brothers song!>
<<"Wanna buy a duck?">>
I set my tank up two weeks ago on 1/24/19. He’s a lone fish in a 5 gal, heater, filtered tank with a plastic plant. I cycled his tank with Tetra safe start which cycled in three days as always showing 0 Amm, 0 Nitrite and 10 nitrate.
<All good.>
Chester is a hmpk and super aggressive and has flared tremendously at his shadow for the past two weeks. I started turning on the light about four days ago for 4-5 hours per day trying to get him use to it. He seems like he is settling down a little bit. I also put Indian Almond extract that I make to help him feel more comfy. I also feed his a variety of foods i.e. pellets, Brine shrimp, bloodworms, and Mysis shrimp.
<Good.>
Last night I came home and noticed one of his Gill covers is a little open and flared out. He eases up to the glass and places the Gill on it ever so lightly to try and rub it. It’s not like flashing, put it’s definitely bothering him. Besides that he is eating and swimming normally. He blows huge bubble nests! Moving around very actively and lots of aggressive posturing. He it stressed by those shadows. I put on an aquarium background with plants and rocks to try and break up the shadows. It helps some, but I figure he just needs more time to adjust.
<Perhaps.>
I had to wait two weeks to clean his tank with the Tetra Safe Start. I decided to go ahead and clean the tank last night ( 1 day early) after I saw the open Gill cover. I went to clean the tank and had a problem with getting my siphon started. This kicked up all this debris. I couldn’t believe how much debris I saw. The brown poo I understood, but there was the white floating debris too and lots of it. I was confused. I never cleaned a Betta tank with this much debris.
<Is there a lot of (live) plants in here? Did you use Indian Almond leaves or similar? Both can/will decay to produce organic mulm. Not in itself dangerous -- indeed, it plays host to useful bacteria -- but too much can clog up filter inlets, compromising water quality. Regardless, any organic debris that settles in the tank does indicate insufficient mechanical filtration. Again, some fish don't need or water a lot of water turnover, which means that debris collects in their aquarium because it isn't sucked into the filter. But if you want a debris-free substrate, increasing mechanical filtration is the key, perhaps alongside more frequent water changes to siphon out debris.>
I did have an incident with the Mysis shrimp. It was the first time I used that food. I believe some of it fell to the bottom. It’s white so it was hard to see, no way did I think it could be that much. I ended up changing 80% of the water. I know this is a no no, but I just couldn’t leave all that gunk in the tank.
<Changing that much water is absolutely fine so long as water chemistry and water temperature aren't dramatically altered. After all, to paraphrase a Greek philosopher, a wild fish doesn't swim in the same river twice! They're constantly exposed to new water at varying rates, and to some degree, can adapt to slight changes without too much bother. On the other hand, cleaning the filter out too severely, which can get rid of the bacteria, is a no-no, but the water itself isn't a problem.>
I still think there is plenty more, but with my siphon issue I couldn’t clean properly. The tank is bare bottom so all this stuff was floating in the water column. I’m getting a new siphon today. Anyway when I changed the water I put in stress coat in hopes to soothe his Gill, Indian almond leaves extract. I also added a probiotic called Eco balance that I’ve wanted to use.
<Cool.>
I read that his Gill Problem could be bacterial.
<It can be, but is more often environmental. Most often happens when fish are exposed to high ammonia or nitrate, or cramped conditions, and perhaps high nitrate and low oxygen levels. So while some parasites can damage the gill lamellae, notably Velvet, I'd be looking at environmental causes first.>
The open cover happen in the span of 14 hours. I have Kanaplex at home, but I didn’t want to jump to that. If this can heal with clean water I’d rather just do that.
<This would be my approach, yes.>
I checked his water param.s before I did his water change and I had 0 Am and looked like 20ppm Nitrate. I purchased him from Petco. He looked and behaved normally, however for curiosity I tested the water in his cup he came in and the water was very dark green. It was 4 or 8ppm. Maybe this is affecting his Gills too.
<4-8 ppm nitrate is trivially low, so unlikely a stress factor. On the other hand, virtually no urban domestic water supply I'm aware of has nitrate that low, so unless you're using spring water or something, I'd be suspicious of any test kit that registers the nitrate this low.>
Glad y’all are here as always, this is my 5th Betta and I’ve inquired here about three of them. I remember Bob told me read the facts and I did. I’ve read over 90% of all of them!
<Cool.>
Thanks Bob!
<I've cc'ed him.>
Thank you!
Donetta
<Cheers, Neale.>
<<I concur w/ Neale's usual stellar input here. BobF>>
Re: Betta open Gill cover (RMF, alternative views?)      2/9/19

Alternative views, WOW I didn’t know y’all did that!
You guys are the best!!
<We have our moments!>
Thanks
Donetta
<Most welcome. Neale.>

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