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Betta Fish - Is this old age?


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Hello. My first pet fish and the first fish ever I bonded with is not looking good. He's a male Betta named Gloober. I got him in Jan this year as an adult. Hes a halfmoon Betta but his fins are not as full and long as the use to be a few months ago.

I had him in a heavily planted 10 gallon but I noticed he was breathing hard , lethargic, and laying down on leaves or the substrate a lot. In the 10 gallon his color was normal. I moved him to a seasoned 4.5 gallon and he improved, and went back to being alert, swimming around, and a normal breathing rate. His color was good up til today. He's been in the 4.5 gallon for a week and he looks worse than ever, despite looking ok yesterday. Gloober is in a tank with red rili shrimps, and 5 CPDs (doesn't bother or trys to kill any of them. He never tried to even when he was well in the 10 gallon.) There is a faded patch above his head that wasn't there before... It's a yellowish discoloration. He was a solid dark blue head and blue body with no yellow. He's not a mustard Betta.

My water parameters in the 4.5 gallon he is in now are these: this is after a water change. I used the co-op test strips.

Nitrate 25ppm. Nirute1ppm, GH 50ppm, KH 40ppm, PH 6.8, Chlorine 0. Temp 78 F. 

In the tank is the co-op nano sponge filter and a zwiss air stone.

The CPDS and shrimp r all fine, active, swimming, and eating... I don't think it's disease cuz these tiny fish are doing fine. It looks like Gloober has lost color and has a cloudyness on his eyes... It reminds me of cataracts that humans get. Is he just dying of old age :(?.... Or is this a disease.





Edited by LeafJelly
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On 12/11/2023 at 1:17 PM, jwcarlson said:

How big of water changes and how often are you doing them?  Nitrite being at 1 ppm is of concern, are you sure of that number?  Could you use a test strip on your tap water and let us know what that looks like?

I did a 60% water change just now. I usually do a 50% change every 1-2 weeks. The last one I did on this take was a week ago. There are quite a bit of botanicals in there that might be contributing to the nitrites. I'm certain it's 1. I just did a third test on the tank water and it's definitely a little pink.

Out of the tap the water parameters are this:

Nitrate & Nitrites 0

GH 75

kH 80

Ph 6.8

I did drip acclimate him when moving him to the 4.5 gallon.

Edited by LeafJelly
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The only fish in the tank with him are a few CPDs?  Something (to me) isn't adding up between nitrates and water changes.  I've got a planted 10 gallon with about 10 CPDs , a small pleco (for now), and shrimp/snails and I almost cannot keep nitrates in the tank.  Obviously not everything is directly comparable.  But if you did a 60% WC and then measured 25 PPM it was >50 PPM prior to that.  Additionally, the nitrite is a concern as it would have been over 2 PPM before the water change.  Do you have ammonia test strips?  Or do you notice bubbles/foaming on top of the water?


Edit to add: I wouldn't expect there to be as big of discrepancy between GH/KH on your tap vs the tank water after water change.  Not sure what to make of that.

Edited by jwcarlson
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Ahh there is UNS controsoil in that tank. Maybe that's it? I don't notice any foaming or lasting bubbles on the surface. I do have coop ammonia test strips. It read as 0 ammonia, I did follow the 30 sec up down dipping instructions.

Maybe im reading my strips wrong. I'll take a photo , even tho photos often change the colors.

There are definitely only 5-6 CPDS that aren't breeding. A handful of red rili shrimps and 1 small amano

Edited by LeafJelly
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