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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    Post Gullible Betta Owner with Sick Fishes, Bad Tank, Help!


    0 Not allowed!
    I got a betta few months ago. He was very happy. I had him in a 2.5 tank with poland spring water, a thermometer, gravel a plaxcascade 170 filter, some bamboo plants, he ate pellets and flakes and the occasional blood worm.
    I was doing a lot of water changes so got a bigger tank, 5. 5, the guy at the pet store sold me all this stuff: maglife nitrastrate($$$), a banana plant and some other kind of plant, a pleco, a new tank.
    In one week the pleco had visible velvet (bronze, even I couldn't miss it, so I looked it up online)
    My betta got fin rot and now seems to have velvet.
    I love this fish and do NOT want him to die. I put him in a 2.5 hospital tank in a dark, warm room with fresh Poland Spring.
    I put the evil pleco in another hospital tank, more of a vase, too.
    Now I guess I have to put the gravel back in and cycle the tank.
    I am overwhelmed reading about tank cycling which I just learned about for the first time.
    I do not even know what testers to buy and some say you need a siphon, some say you don't, I don't know what kind of filter to get, and so on.
    So, if you are all laughing now which I don't blame you, could you take a minute and help? I would feel very guilty if I killed either fish.
    How long will cycling take in a 5 gallon tank?
    What do I need to buy to do it?
    I read a lot of the cycling forum, but it is over my head, is there a cycling for dummies with step by step instructions and advice on exactly how to test, what to buy, what kind of filter to buy, what filter filler to buy, etc?
    Also, I was reading about this stuff called Microbelift NiteOut combined with Microbelift Special Blend which is supposed to cycle a tank immediately. (How would I even go about testing this?)
    Also, should I throw out the plants I got from the store? They look healthy, but maybe they are carrying a disease? The original bamboo is still growing strong (I have the roots in a glass.)
    Also, what new filter should I buy? How should I clean it and refill it, how often? I was looking at the marina power filter.
    Thanks for advice for dummies.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    No wonder your m doesn't work! Here is some more to replace what you sloshed. - mommy1   Bunny pest control penquin. - mommy1   I severely underestimated her stupidity... which was stupid of me! - Honey Badger 1   Well, from where I am sittin' it is good to have you back man! Have one on me. - Honey Badger 1   Thanks for the rep :-) - ~firefly~   
    Bone Marrow Donation - Childhood Depression - Depression - Environment - Eye Injury Prevention - Glaucoma - Kidney Cancer - Kidney Disease - Kidney Transplantation - Leukemia - Lyme Disease - Mental Retardation - Missing Children - Organ Donation - T - 850R   

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    0 Not allowed!
    Ok, This is a lot to tackle... Here are a few things that are not optional:

    * Take the pleco back, You do not have room for him in either tank and if it is a common one [The most commonly sold btw] It can get WAY over a foot long.

    * The betta tank requires a heater, They are tropical fish.

    * Get yourself an API Master Freshwater test kit [Under 20$ on amazon or over 30$ at your LFS - Your choice]

    I read a lot of the cycling forum, but it is over my head, is there a cycling for dummies with step by step instructions and advice on exactly how to test, what to buy, what kind of filter to buy, what filter filler to buy, etc?
    Cycling is actually pretty simple but it IS a process and requires that steps be followed [And much waiting around lol]
    There are simply too many variables for a write up to exist that lays out what filter to buy etc.... Know what I mean?

    Since you are going to be cycling with fish - It's going to take a couple of weeks to complete, At least. Get a siphon you are going to be doing many water changes and you will need it.

    I have never used any of the cycling supplements so I will leave opinions on that to others as to whether or not they are snake oil.

    Lucky bamboo is NOT an aquatic plant [I know it is common in shop tanks but Google it and see] so leave it out of the tank.
    Last edited by Goes to 11!; 08-12-2012 at 05:30 PM. Reason: Changed 'to' to 'too'
    Gas mileage isn't everything OIIIIIIIO
    Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.
    Why pretend there are no stupid questions? Actually, There are many stupid questions: "Should I drink this bleach?" Is just one example.
    Having said that, Just because it's a stupid question doesn't mean that it shouldn't be asked. It's better to know.

    A warm beer is better than a cold beer. Because nothing is better than a cold beer, and a warm beer is better than nothing.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Aug 2012
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    Default Thanks 850R


    0 Not allowed!
    What a relief to get some good advice without anyone trying to sell me anything. Thanks. Okay, I will get rid of bamboo (sorry I DO have a heater, maybe I forgot to mention that, and the temp is between 78 and 80 depending on the air conditioner in my room).
    I hope they will take the pleco back. I'll give him back even if they won't give me my money back.
    SHould i just keep my betta in the smaller tank while I cycle the larger tank?
    I will get the API kit, do they have instructions on how to cycle in the kit?
    Thanks again.

  4. #4

    Join Date
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    Childhood Cancer - hobbs   World Trade Center Victims and Heroes - Fireworks Safety - hobbs   Myasthenia Gravis - Ovarian Cancer - Sexual Assault - Substance Abuse - Lady Hobbs   Bone Marrow Donation - Childhood Depression - Depression - Environment - Eye Injury Prevention - Glaucoma - Kidney Cancer - Kidney Disease - Kidney Transplantation - Leukemia - Lyme Disease - Mental Retardation - Missing Children - Organ Donation - T - Lady Hobbs   Arthritis - Child Abuse - Colon Cancer - Colorectal Cancer - Dystonia - Education - Free Speech - Interstitial Cystitis - ME/CFIDS - Reye's Syndrome - Save the Music - Teens Against Smoking - Victim's Rights - Water Quality - Lady Hobbs   

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    0 Not allowed!
    My question would be is the 2.5 cycled? If that tank is not cycled then it hardly matters if he was in a 2.5 uncycled or a 5 gallon uncycled. The 2.5 would get even more toxic than the 5 since there's less water.

    I don't believe you need to tear the tank down and start over. If he does have Velvet, keep the tank lights off but he can be treated with ick medication. Velvet is a parasite. And yes, use the bacteria starter if you have it. It will certainly not hurt anything.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Sep 2010
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    No wonder your m doesn't work! Here is some more to replace what you sloshed. - mommy1   Bunny pest control penquin. - mommy1   I severely underestimated her stupidity... which was stupid of me! - Honey Badger 1   Well, from where I am sittin' it is good to have you back man! Have one on me. - Honey Badger 1   Thanks for the rep :-) - ~firefly~   
    Bone Marrow Donation - Childhood Depression - Depression - Environment - Eye Injury Prevention - Glaucoma - Kidney Cancer - Kidney Disease - Kidney Transplantation - Leukemia - Lyme Disease - Mental Retardation - Missing Children - Organ Donation - T - 850R   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    You're welcome

    Good to know about the heater and temps sound good .

    If neither is cycled - Put him in the larger tank, It gives you incrementally more time before your water parameters start to go downhill.

    The API kit does not have instructions on anything except how to use it properly.

    BUT... When used properly it is THE most effective tool you have to keep track of what is happening in your tank.

    It is literally your window into the bacterial world that keeps your tank up and functioning as a system.

    Testing your water parameters is how you stay informed during cycling and then you react according to the information you are getting [Test results] Ultimately it is a reactive process not a proactive process and like I said.. A lot of waiting around .

    With this in mind I suggest you give the 'cycling with fish' sticky another read and do not be afraid to ask for clarification.
    Gas mileage isn't everything OIIIIIIIO
    Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.
    Why pretend there are no stupid questions? Actually, There are many stupid questions: "Should I drink this bleach?" Is just one example.
    Having said that, Just because it's a stupid question doesn't mean that it shouldn't be asked. It's better to know.

    A warm beer is better than a cold beer. Because nothing is better than a cold beer, and a warm beer is better than nothing.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    No Message - korith   Because I do agree with you but its hopeless to tilt at windmills - smaug   For finding the extra dollar! ;) - escamosa   For your nice tank, another neon! - steeler58   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Put him in that big tank and treat for ich as Lady Hobbs said, and listen to 850r too, they are masters in their hobby.

    The plants did not cause the problem, the water conditions of the store and his tank did. However, the plants will likely die without the proper lighting, so it's best to return them until you do the research. This site is a great resource.

    Don't feel too guilty...I had a lot of fish die under my first ignorant attempts at fishkeeping...at least you caught it in time and are working to make it right!
    20 gallon with a male betta, neons, glowlights, and red cherry shrimp. (work in progess) Recently added a few LIVE plants and driftwood, Woooohoooo!

  7. #7

    Join Date
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    Smile Thanks again


    0 Not allowed!
    Okay, will cycle with my betta, and do what everyone says. Whew. I had no idea I had to be a chemist, biologist, botanist, zoologist, and a bit obsessive to keep a pet betta. Live and learn. What a great community, I see why people become aquageeks. Thanks everybody!

  8. #8

    Join Date
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    Member of the month, a toast is in order. - Strider199   Sorry about your blood parrot :-( - ~firefly~   For this; http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/aquariumforum/showthread.php?t=111325 - Strider199   :-) - ~firefly~   Happy mother's day! Enjoy one on me LOL - imma24   
    Childhood Cancer - hobbs   World Trade Center Victims and Heroes - Fireworks Safety - hobbs   Myasthenia Gravis - Ovarian Cancer - Sexual Assault - Substance Abuse - Lady Hobbs   Bone Marrow Donation - Childhood Depression - Depression - Environment - Eye Injury Prevention - Glaucoma - Kidney Cancer - Kidney Disease - Kidney Transplantation - Leukemia - Lyme Disease - Mental Retardation - Missing Children - Organ Donation - T - Lady Hobbs   Arthritis - Child Abuse - Colon Cancer - Colorectal Cancer - Dystonia - Education - Free Speech - Interstitial Cystitis - ME/CFIDS - Reye's Syndrome - Save the Music - Teens Against Smoking - Victim's Rights - Water Quality - Lady Hobbs   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    I'd be curious as to why you suspect Velvet. Velvet takes on an appearance of a light brown goldfish coloring on their backs. If the tank lights are off, and you turn a flashlight on the fish, it will tend to glow some. But Velvet thrives in lighted tanks and why they should remain dark during it's presence and treated as you would for ick.

    It would be a shame to put this fish under medications without knowing for sure he even has the disease.

  9. #9

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    Aug 2012
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    Default Why velvet


    0 Not allowed!
    The pleco has highly visible velvet, I noticed the coloring and thought it odd and went online and saw it. Then I saw that my betta's face wasn't as dark as before, and I turned off the lights, shone a flashlight on him and there are two faint bronze-gold patches. I thought I was imagining it but my non-imaginative husband also saw the patches and agrees it looks like the ones on the pleco,

  10. #10

    Join Date
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    No Message - korith   Because I do agree with you but its hopeless to tilt at windmills - smaug   For finding the extra dollar! ;) - escamosa   For your nice tank, another neon! - steeler58   

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    First advice, *never* trust the petstore employees.

    Your tank is too small for the pleco, return him if you can. If they won't take sick fish, try to cure him and then return him...you just cannot sustain a pleco in a 5g. The betta is the ONLY fish you can keep in there.

    The betta needs a heater asap...they are tropical fish and need higher temps than most. On this website are the parameters they need.

    Since you are now cycling with fish...

    Get a filter rated for at least 10 gallons. You may have to adjust the flow so that it is very low, since bettas are not strong swimmers.

    Buy an API Master test kit (available online if not in your store). Test every day for ammonia, nitrIte, and nitrAte.

    Any time the ammonia or nitrIte go over .25ppm, do a 50% water change. You will have to do a lot of water changes, so acclimating the fish (gradually adding water) to your DECHLORINATED tap water is a good idea (much cheaper). To dechlorinate, use Seacham's Prime if available, if not, anything that removes chlorine and chloramines will work.

    Repeat (usually for weeks) until ammonia and nitrIte read 0ppm, and nitrAte reads 20ppm or above. Then you will only have to do a w/c when the nitrAte gets over 20ppm.

    Never rinse your filter material (the spongey stuff) in fresh water from the tap, always use dechlorinated or your GOOD bacteria will die. Don't change it out until it falls apart, and consult us before you do that to help you keep your cycle.
    20 gallon with a male betta, neons, glowlights, and red cherry shrimp. (work in progess) Recently added a few LIVE plants and driftwood, Woooohoooo!

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