Visually Impaired Betta?
I've been watching Echo, the Amazing Color-Changing Betta, swimming around the tank half she shares with Ruby for a while now, and I don't think she sees too well. It's not bad when she's swimming slowly, but she aspires to be the boss female of the two, and that's when I start noticing things.
Echo keeps "charging" at Ruby, trying to nip her fins, but she consistently misses, overshooting or running smack into the tank wall. During chases, she runs into the tank plants, the log ornament, and even the tank heater. If it's there, she's run into it.
There are more hints at feeding time that she can't see very well. The pellets I feed are the floating type, and when she tries to grab them off the surface she misses far more often than she catches one. When they finally sink to the bottom, she finds them by doing her best impression of a cory cat, cruising along the tank bottom and snapping them up as she runs into them.
If her vision is that bad I don't think Echo will be able to go back into the main sorority tank; she'd never be able to compete for food with the other females if she can't quite see what's going on. They'd tear her to pieces before she saw it coming. At the moment she shares half of a divided 5-gallon with Ruby, who's an active but docile she-betta.
Poor fish. She does sound blind to me. Probably best to keep her out of sorority like you said. I suggest also with blind fish, dont rearrange the tank. My goldfish Petri has been blind for several years, so she's used to it now and has memorized the layout of the tank, but i cant help that she runs into other fish sometimes. And if the fish decide to remodel anything even just a few centimeters she gets all flustered and messed up. Eventually they learn other ways to find their food easier, Petri became an exclusive bottom feeder, and seems to smell for food and aim and rapid fire picking up anything near the smell until she gets it, which only takes a few tries.
10gal Betta Tank
, Pearl, Wendy, Nightmare
,Albino Dwarf Cories
, and Nerite Snails
- Community Fish
- Two Fiddler Crabs
I don't think she's completely blind, since she responds - somewhat - to the pink lunatic on the other side of the tank divider and to movement outside the tank, but even if she's partially blind it would explain a few things. Like why she spent all her time hiding when she was in the sorority tank.