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Old 06-13-2020, 09:38 PM   #1
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Question A sad Betta Tank situation - in need of advice.

Hello everyone - this is a bit long winded sorry in advance!
I have a betta tank that is having some issues. Of which I'm unsure of. Maybe someone here can help me figure it out?
My betta shows no signs of any sickness per-say. But he has been laying on the bottom of his tank for about 2 weeks now give or take a whole lot more then he usually does. His fins seem like they have taken a beating too.

Since Covid came about I had a hard time finding any of the bottled water I would normally buy at the store ( spring water) to put into the fish tank when I do my water changes. So I have had to switch over to my well water, from the tap. Now I did a bunch of tests and found a way to make the water decent for the fish tank. I had to set up a 'spare' Cycled tank to get this to work for me to be on the safe side.
I have ammonia, heavier minerals and a PH that ranges from 7.4 up to higher in my well water at times and to be safe I put it into the spare tank for 2-4 days to let it convert the ammonia out and I treat it with a API Tap water conditioner and API pH Down before transferring it over to the fish tank as needed when I do a water change/ gravel cleaning.

I have been doing this method of the well water for about 2 months now. It was fine the first month. But the past 2-3 weeks I have been getting the worse case of brown fuzzy algae. It is easy to clean up but it takes over my tank rather fast. I can do a tank cleaning and 2-3 days later it looks like I did nothing in a months time.

My fish for about a year now has been a shy eater. He will eat when I am not around to watch, So I have no idea if he has been eating really, or maybe he is eating a bit of the algae? I do not know. Now I have long string green or Hair algae too to deal with on-top of that.

I read that brown algae can develop from too much nutrience in the water..
I am wondering if my tank is too small for the well water with all the nutrience it brings?
Besides what I've been trying to do already which is clean the algea out as much as I can each time I do a water change and leaving the light on a bit longer from 6 hours to 8+ hours, I am stuck on what else to do.
I know my well water is not ideal for fish life but I got stuck doing this either way. I feel I am stuck in a rut, unable to fix this and my fish will slowly die perhaps?

Here is all my info about the tank and everything :
Fish afflicted: Male halfmoon betta (I have no idea how old he is - I have had him for about 2 years now) He has been resting at the bottom of the tank and I do not know if he is eating at all, his fins are also looking rough on the edges. Breathing seems fine.

Tank parameters: I test with API freshwater Master test kit (liquid)
Ammonia: 0 ppm
Nitrites: 0 ppm
Nitrates: looks to be 40 ppm or just under.
Temperature: 83F /29C
pH: 7.6 and 7.8 - 8 on the high range pH test. ( have a hard time with seeing the difference in colour for the orange -brown colour range)
All Tested on June 13.
Only thing I cant test is the GH (general hardness) of the water, but I do not have a water softener either, I just know my water is on the harder side which I`m sure does not help.

Tank Location: Against a wall beside a window with only 1 hour maybe of morning indirect light.


Tank size: 5 US GAL / 19L Fluval Spec. Currently he has been in this tank I believe around 11 months. I had to switch tanks before hand cause his old one had a leak and poor design.


Filtration: Just what came build into the tank with a heater added in. I put the water flow on as low as it would let me.


Amount of fish in tank: 1 - just my betta 2+ years old- I've had him for about 2 years.

Tank maintenance: Last 20% Water change was 4 days ago, I do a 20 % water change every 1 -2 weeks and I vacuum the gravel each time. I also clean up the algae as best I can most times. I also have to top up the water levels to the tank once every 2-3 days due to it evaporating.


New things to tank: Only thing new is my water source, and I switch out a dried leaf once every 3 weeks or so.


Food fed: 'NorthFin Premium Fish food Betta Bits' sinking pellet food. No recent diet changes. I could never get him to eat anything else like blood worms. (took me a while to find a pellet food he would actually want to eat when I first got him)


->Another thing to note regarding food is my feeding times have changed a lot due to my work hours being moved around all over, I do not know if that is contributing to him looking like he is not eating now or not.

Note: I only have live plants in this tank. I do not know what they are called I got them well over a year ago! I use a mix of 90% fluval plant stratum substrate and a 10% of small gravel substrate. My old tank had drift wood , the new one is to narrow of a tank for me to really fit one in properly.
If I forgot to mention anything please ask! Thank you for your time in reading this, I am hoping someone out there might know something to help me out . I appreciate it either way.

-Juwl.( I am new here sorry if i posted in the wrong place )
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Old 06-14-2020, 03:05 AM   #2
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I dont feed pellets for my betta, he never seems to look at it and ends sinking to the botton, im feeding him granules that takes a while to drop cause betta loves floating food. The pelleta could be causing detritus formations in your tank.

When u said the only thing u changed was the water, think of it as if you go to the doctor and he tells you get to change your blood type parameters..just like that you will get stressed and fell different.

This 1 hour direct sunlight can be helping algae to take place in there as well.

Make sure theres not a lot of outside movement or any possibilites of sprays or particles to go into the water surface. You told us that your betta is kinda shy, try to understnd your fish behavior, for example, my betta thinks he rules my room. Eveytime i get closer to his tank he opens everything and i pretend im affraid (step back) so he "owned" the space and starts swiming around, doing his things. However when he is affraid of movement outside the aquarium he goes into his hidden spots. Make sure you have a "home" for yours as well to distress him. And try Indian Almond Leaves to make the water ph goes down and he will just love the new protection from the light 12/7 and the water appearence (dark)

Another way to understand/train your fish is that you can feed him making some everyday "code", for example, when i feed my betta i knock the glass with my finger nails just enough to him to understand its time (my betta already knows when its the feeding time just by that). Try to "talk" with him, create a relation routine with your little environment.

I have the same 5g tank and my betta does not have any filter or heater, only 1 anubia and a big rock. Plus i cutted a plastic sheet that i let the surface tension of the water holds it creating a roof for him.

My tap water is HARD HARD 100, thats why i use more conditioner in a bucket before adding to his tank and i test it right before, that just to make sure its not lethal for him, like amonia spikes and temperature, also its hard to clean smaller tanks so make sure u are cleaning it throughly withou losing the benefit bacterias.

My betta is doing great, creating this new blueish colors in its skin, eating everything. Maybe your betta may be stressed and with a new "blood type" as i said before. Try to understand his patterns in the enviroemt you provided for the answers you deeply want.

With a 5g planted tank using conditioned tap water you will have to take good care of it if you want the best for him. But do try the almond leaves, no margin of error, he WILL enjoy it, its cheap as well.

If u want, add some of those regular small algae eater snails (in which i have for the betta tank) but make sure to control its population, they will definitely help you. Or choose any other snail that can live in a 5g tank.

Hope it helps you.
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Old 06-14-2020, 03:48 PM   #3
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Also, check the original betta enviroment, so you know where this fish came from in the nature:

https://youtu.be/8lHMDWRgKrQ
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Old 06-16-2020, 01:46 PM   #4
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Tbh the temperature is a bit on the high side - try lowering it to between 78-80, as from what I understand this is the ideal range for these fish. Lying on the bottom can be a sign of ammonia or nitrite poisoning, but if your parametres are OK that's probably not it (unless the test is defective). Perhaps your filter current is too strong? This may make bettas reluctant to swim, and could also explain the torn fins.
However, he may also be in the early stages of fin rot, so increase the water changes slightly, make sure not to stir up too much substrate when you clean (this can cause a release of huge amounts of harmful bacteria), and in general make sure the water is 100% clean. It wouldn't hurt to have some broad-spectrum medication on hand, in case things get worse. For the time being you can try treating him with aquarium salt, he may perk up afterwards, and if he doesn't improve after some time you can try more targeted medication.

Is he showing any other symptoms? Bloating, flashing, skin damage, weird growths, erratic swimming etc.? A picture or video would be helfpul.

He most probably isn't eating the algae, bettas are carnivores and won't usually touch plant matter. He'd have to really be starving.
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Old 07-10-2020, 04:28 AM   #5
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I hey I’m Jumping in kind of late but I keep three Cory catfish albino they are great at cleaning the bottom of the tank and algae and stuff like that they’re really low maintenance and they like the same water temperature as the beta they do really well and my beta seem to actually really like them I think it’s because they’re pale in color .and I also feed my beta Brine shrimp frozen and frozen blood worms and it seem to make less mess. I got my beta when he was still a fry and I actually feed no pellets or flakes only Shrimp and blood worms and I also have a dial a treat .Plus like somebody else said I also tap on the tank to let everybody know I’m feeding them and I interact a lot with them and that seems to really bring out the Betta personality
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Old 07-10-2020, 07:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bettagirl678 View Post
I hey I’m Jumping in kind of late but I keep three Cory catfish albino they are great at cleaning the bottom of the tank and algae and stuff like that they’re really low maintenance and they like the same water temperature as the beta they do really well and my beta seem to actually really like them I think it’s because they’re pale in color
From what I understand OP has gravel substrate, he'd have to change it to sand before he could get catfish or plecos of any kind. Not to mention the tank is way too small to have any more fish together with a betta. A few amano shrimp would do a very nice job of cleaning the tank, they have a small bioload and are too big to be eaten by the betta. Or one or two nerite snails. But if there is an algae problem manual removal is still the best and most effective option, no animal is going to replace regular tank maintenance.
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Old 07-10-2020, 08:59 AM   #7
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[QUOTE=Enchantress;3546045]From what I understand OP has gravel substrate, he'd have to change it to sand before he could get catfish or plecos of any kind. Not to mention the tank is way too small to have any more fish together with a betta. A few amano shrimp would do a very nice job of cleaning the tank, they have a small bioload and are too big to be eaten by the betta. Or one or two nerite snails. But if there is an algae problem manual removal is still the best and most effective option, no animal is going to replace regular tank maintenance.[/QUOTE

I don’t use sand for my catfish how ever I am planning On switching to a smooth glass because Sand is just way too messy it seems like more of it floats and stays at the bottom.Now the amino shrimp is a good idea I can’t keep shrimp in my tank for some reason my beta goes after them he won’t eat them but he does kill them And snails are great I had a few and they got a parasite which is common in the wild but it’s not common in aquariums and it was very terrifying it was like alien but those are good ideas to help kind of keep the tank cand snails are great I had a few and they got a parasite which is common in the wild but it’s not common in aquariums and it was very terrifying it was like alien but those are good ideas to help keep the tank clean and It may help to because it’ll give the beta something to be curious about I know I’ve had a few bettas in the past that were not very active but the one I have now it would worry me if he even sat at the bottom of the tank
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