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My betta has been in a 6 gallon (23 litres) planted tank with 5 ember tetras and a couple of dwarf shrimp for about 2 weeks now. He and the tetras seem to get along fine (no aggressive signs from any of them) but the shrimp live in fear of the betta so we decided to give him his own tank. Also we have sand substrate and the betta seemed to like to chew and spit out grains so we thought gravel would be better for him.

The new tank set up is as follows: 5 gallon heated to about 75 degrees (24 deg C) with amazon sword, tropical ferns, mopani wood and gravel. Only tank mate is a nerite snail. We used Prime to dechlorinate the water and added API quick start.

After setting up the tank and waiting about 9 hours, we introduced the betta. Less than 24 hours later the betta was laying on the floor of the tank most of the time. The water parameters seem fine, 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites, 0 nitrates, 7.6 pH (same pH as previous tank).

One last thing, the water in the new tank did look a little murky but I don't know why... we cleaned the gravel, boiled the wood and did not feed him in the new tank. (maybe it was due to some tannins leaking from the wood)

We reintroduced him into the old tank today and although he is a bit more active, he still lays long periods of time at the bottom of the tank. We've checked him and doesn't show any physical damage.

If there are no signs of illness why might he be acting this way? Also any suggestions on treatment? Or should we just give him some time?

I really appreciate any insight into my problem with my betta.

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  • Take a look at this related question What is swimbladder disease in fish? Dec 5 '14 at 10:54
  • just wondering what is the condition of your Betta now? was it an illness or was it the change of the environment Dec 22 '14 at 11:05
  • this may of been a case of shock from the new tank did you float him or add him straight in they do prefer higher temps of 25-26'c quick start isn't reliable but if your sure their wasn't an ammonia spike I think it was just shock maybe?
    – cal
    Oct 14 '17 at 10:20

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