CLAMPED BETTA FINS, LETHARGIC AND WHITE POOP PLZ ANY ADVICE IS HELPFUL

Navfish

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My betta has been showing signs of clamped fins starting 3-4 days ago. He's active and eating well but I can't seem to pinpoint the issue. I got him April 8th of this year.
GOING TO TREAT WITH PARACLEANSE

VERY LETHARGIC AND WHITE POOP-SAME SYMPTOMS OF THE OTHER BETTA WHO DIED
*****IMPORTANT TO NOTE: he was in the same 5g 4 days ago but split between another betta. This means he had 2.5 g of space to swim (but his fins were open). He has recently gotten the 5g for himself because my the other betta died due to dropsy. His first symptom before he got dropsy was white poop and he died 2-3 days later.

Tank size: 5 gallon tank
tank age: 4 Months
pH: 7.8
ammonia: 0-.25 (more towards .25)
nitrite: 0
nitrate: 5-10
kH: N/A
gH: N/A
tank temp: 78 degrees

Fish Symptoms (include full description including lesion, color, location, fish behavior): clamped fins and LETHARGIC and white poop


Volume and Frequency of water changes: 25% weekly
I started yesterday that going to be doing 25% every other day for the week to combat the symptom. (good idea or no?)

Chemical Additives or Media in your tank: Regular filter , hang on the tank (with no activated carbon but with sponge media) also almond leaves

Tank inhabitants: Betta and snail

Recent additions to your tank (living or decoration): umbrella plant roots in water started like last month

Exposure to chemicals: no chemicals

Digital photo (include if possible):
 

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AdoraBelle Dearheart

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Well, I can see from the tank that the snail is a female nerite anyway! Even if I hadn't seen the snail.... :lol:

How long have you had the betta? Oddly, he doesn't seem to be clamping his fins in any of the pics!

Do you use a water conditioner for the new water you add to the tank when you do a water change? Which conditioner? When you do a water change, do you clean the substrate when you do water changes?
I personally would do daily water changes, but only if you're using a decent water conditioner to deal with chlorine/chloromines and matching the new water temp to the tank temp before adding it.

Sorry to ask for yet more info, but since the photos don't really capture a visual problem, any chance you could shoot some video of him? Especially if you can capture the fin movement that you find strange. The video upload feature on the forum doesn't work I'm afraid, but if it's uploaded to youtube, it can be linked here without a problem!
 

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If the fish is eating well but doing stringy white poop, it could have intestinal worms.
Praziquantel and Levamisole or Flubendazole can be used to treat different intestinal worms.

If the fish is not eating as much as normal, acting lethargic and doing a stringy white poop it probably has an internal protozoan infection.
Metronidazole can sometimes cure internal protozoan infections.

If the fish has stopped eating, bloated up overnight, and does a stringy white poop, it has an internal bacterial infection. Your other Betta might have had an internal bacterial infection because dropsy is often caused by internal bacteria.
There's no cure for fish once they bloat up and stop eating because they normally have massive internal damage.

The following link has more information about these ailments.
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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Does para cleanse work?
-something weird happened when I dosed Paracleanse tdy. An hour ago, after dose, he was sitting at the bottom and only getting up when I came up. So I did a water change 25% like 5 minutes go (me being impulsive and nervous). He's still at the bottom whenever I leave.

Should I still go with the regular schedule with dosing still or just leave it and stick to water changes? I'm so sorry for these stupid questions. I've lost 3 bettas in the span of 6 months. It seems like i'm a terrible betta owner.

I'm sorry I haven't been here - personal life stuff has kept me busy.

Please do an emergency water change, change 70% of the water, making sure to use water conditioner and to match the temperature of the new water to the tank temp before adding it. Clean fresh water is the best medicine for fish until you can get some proper meds, but when I googled the product you've named here, Paraclense? Seems it's a lot of different herbs, seeds and roots? I have no idea what affects these things would have on fish, but I wouldn't add anything like that to the tank at all, and I'm very concerned about what it could do to him. It's important to remove as much of that Paracleanse as possible, which means large water changes to dilute it out. Give the substrate a good clean at the same time, and wipe down the inside of the tank walls just before the water change.

You're not a terrible fish keeper! You're new to the hobby, which has an incredibly steep learning curve, and a lot of people (most of us in fact) struggle when we're new to this. Many people face problems like this, lose fish, feel awful and give up the hobby. I came close to quitting myself! I kept losing the guppies I was buying despite the water testing perfect and doing everything I could, and frustration/upset/self blame almost made me give up. PLEASE DON'T. You clearly care about your fish, you're open to learning and seeking help, and want to save your fish. We all make mistakes, and we've all lost fish, sadly. An inevitable part of the hobby. But the important thing is to learn from these mistakes and improve, and then you can enjoy a peaceful, beautiful tank and healthy fish, once you know what you're doing. Hang in there, and we're here to help and advise.

Worms do need treating, but it's not a super urgent emergency that you must medicate now.now.now. Don't add unknown things to the tank in a panic, since that's likely to make things worse rather than better!

First thing to do is large emergency water changes and tank cleaning. Monitor him and see how he's responding, and let us know. Once you've done at least one large water change, have a calm read through of the thread Colin linked: https://www.fishforums.net/threads/what-to-do-if-your-fish-has-stringy-white-poop.466276/

You need specific medication to treat worms. Cheaper products might seem appealing, but most don't work, and are a risk to the fish, so end up being a waste of money and potentially fatal. The betta can handle worms for a week or so if you need to order meds and wait for them to arrive. The important thing is to maintain good quality fresh water in the meantime, a nicely maintained tank and make sure there's no ammonia or nitrites, and nitrates remain low. Feed him when he's willing to eat (and let us know if he stops eating/remains lethargic/is fin-clamping), and I'll check that thread for which worming medications are available in your country.
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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@Navfish I''ve just had a scan through your posting history, and I think your main problem in all your tanks has been water quality, and getting lots of new fish in the last few months, not quarantining, and not doing enough water changes to keep ammonia/nirites/nitrates under control. Not telling you off, BTW! Just asking you to slow down with buying new fish and adding random meds to the tank, and ask further questions if you're not sure what to do! When I first responded to this thread, you hadn't mentioned the paracleanse you wanted to try, and edited that into the OP today. Had I known you were going to try that medicine when you first posted, I would have urged you not to add that to your tank - and I see that @connerlinderman linked the worming thread to you back on the 23rd May, but you haven't followed the advice in the thread...

Clean, fresh water, changed often, is the best medicine for fish, no matter what the illness. Your tanks are new and not yet fully established, so it's even more crucial to stay on top of water changes and regularly check ammonia/nitrite/nitrate. If there's ever a reading for ammonia or nitrites, or if nitrates are above 20ppm, then it's important to begin large water changes immmediately to get those numbers back to 0/0/<20ppm as soon as possible. Back to back changes are also okay, don't be afraid to change water!

Have you done any water changes since you saw my last post?
 
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Navfish

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@Navfish I''ve just had a scan through your posting history, and I think your main problem in all your tanks has been water quality, and getting lots of new fish in the last few months, not quarantining, and not doing enough water changes to keep ammonia/nirites/nitrates under control. Not telling you off, BTW! Just asking you to slow down with buying new fish and adding random meds to the tank, and ask further questions if you're not sure what to do! When I first responded to this thread, you hadn't mentioned the paracleanse you wanted to try, and edited that into the OP today. Had I known you were going to try that medicine when you first posted, I would have urged you not to add that to your tank - and I see that @connerlinderman linked the worming thread to you back on the 23rd May, but you haven't followed the advice in the thread...

Clean, fresh water, changed often, is the best medicine for fish, no matter what the illness. Your tanks are new and not yet fully established, so it's even more crucial to stay on top of water changes and regularly check ammonia/nitrite/nitrate. If there's ever a reading for ammonia or nitrites, or if nitrates are above 20ppm, then it's important to begin large water changes immmediately to get those numbers back to 0/0/<20ppm as soon as possible. Back to back changes are also okay, don't be afraid to change water!

Have you done any water changes since you saw my last post?
Yes I may have gone overboard with the whole fish keeping thing but a good thing may be that I don't plan to get any more fish. :/

I've done a large water change 50% and i've been doing 25% water changes every day. I'm not going to medicate him quite yet like you guys said.

I looked through my threads and don't seem to see @connerlinderman worming thread. If I had seen it, I would of definitely checked it out. The only thread that I saw was someone recommending me to look through the internal parasite ones.
 
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Valkyrie_Lips

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If it is related to your water quality, then I would suggest bumping up your water changes to 50% every two days. 25% will not do much or make much of a dent if you have any ammonia, nitrite or high nitrates present in the tank.
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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Yes I may have gone overboard with the whole fish keeping thing but a good thing may be that I don't plan to get any more fish. :/

Not at all what I meant! I hope that you don't plan to quit the hobby! I just meant that it would be best at this point to slow down, focus on making sure your tanks get nice and stable and established. Resolve any potential health issues with your current fish first, and then you'll be in a better place to avoid buying any fish that might be sickly in the future, quarantine new stock before letting it anywhere near your newly stable main tanks, and can carefully plan any future stocking. :)

Not judging you or saying you've done anything wrong! It's great that you're so into the hobby. Many of us were the same way! I started off with one small tank and a few guppies, and within a year I was obsessed and had four tanks... so I get it! Multiple tank syndrome is real ;) I'm just urging you to slow down at the moment and take some time to make sure everything is set up and working well, that your current fish are healthy, to worm them if they need worming, learn more about the nitrogen cycle, get into a maintenance routine that works for you and your tanks, stuff like that! Then you're much more likely to have successful tanks, and not want to give up the hobby altogether!
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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I've done a large water change 50% and i've been doing 25% water changes every day. I'm not going to medicate him quite yet like you guys said.

Awesome, how is your betta looking and acting since the water changes? What are the test results for ammonia/nitrite/nitrate now since the water changes?
I looked through my threads and don't seem to see @connerlinderman worming thread. If I had seen it, I would of definitely checked it out. The only thread that I saw was someone recommending me to look through the internal parasite ones.

This is the worming/internal parasites thread: https://www.fishforums.net/threads/what-to-do-if-your-fish-has-stringy-white-poop.466276/

This is the important part you need to know about medications for treating worms:
You can use Praziquantel to treat tapeworm and gill flukes. And use Levamisole to treat thread/ round worms. If you can't find these medications, look for Flubendazole, which treats both lots of worms.

I'm not in the US, so I don't know which brands of medication are available to you. But you need to search for worming medication containing flubendazole - meaning you can treat both round and flatworms at the same time. Let us know the brand names of the medicines you can find so we check the ingredients first before you order or add anything to the tank.

If you cannot get a medication containing flubendazole, then you would need one that contains Levamisole, and another med containing praziquantel. Bit more complicated since you'd need to do multiple rounds of treatment, and not necessarily at the same time. Flubendazole would be easier if you can find a med containing that. We cannot tell whether your betta has round or flatworms without seeing the worms themselves, and fish can easily be carrying both. So since you've seen stringy white poop and he's had other symptoms, we need to treat for both types of worms to be safe.
Treat every fish tank in the house at the same time to prevent cross contamination.

This is also important. Worms inside the fish pass eggs, which are easily transferred if you use the same equipment for different tanks, or put your hands in one tank then a different one, or move fish from one tank to another. (as most of us do!). Fish eat those eggs and then have their own worm burden. So if one of your fish has worms, unless it's in a quarantine tank with no shared equipment, need to treat all your tanks to be sure you've wiped out any worms and eggs.
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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If it is related to your water quality, then I would suggest bumping up your water changes to 50% every two days. 25% will not do much or make much of a dent if you have any ammonia, nitrite or high nitrates present in the tank.

While I totally agree that 25% isn't really a big enough water change to properly dilute ammonia/nitrite/nitrates - someone changing 25% daily is really changing the same amount of water total, as someone doing 50% every other day ;)


The key is to maintain regular, large water changes so that your water chemistry remains chemically close to your source water. If a tank is stable, not overstocked, well planted etc, then many of us change 50-75% weekly. A tank that's more heavily stocked or less planted, or less establised, would need more than this. But if the tank is well maintained with regular water changes, then the source water will be close enough to the tank chemistry that you could theoretically do back to back 100% water changes, one after the other all day, without it being a problem (besides the stress to the fish from you mucking about with their tank constantly) as long as the water is declorinated, and the temperature has been matched to the tank temperature.


If there's an emergency then, whether that's a sick or dead fish, a huge ammonia spike, your toddler pouring a whole bottle of fish food in the tank, if the tank gets contaminated with something - whatever the problem is, then emergency water changes are essential. The bigger the problem, the larger and more frequent the water changes needed to fix it. I ask for 50-75% emergency water change if there is a problem in a tank, any problem, since that's usually enough to buy some time to figure out what the problem is, test the water etc. Even if you find the ammonia is still high or something, and then do another 70% water change an hour later. It's crucial to dilute the toxin, and give the fish fresh clean water, so they're better able to handle whatever illness may be ailing them.

The exception to "huge water changes, often, immediately" - is "old tank syndrome". If a tank hasn't had a water change for a long time, or only very small and infrequent changes, then usually nitrates have built up to a super high level, pH and many other aspects of the water chemistry will have drifted and won't be the same as the source water, and suddenly changing those things with large water changes can easily shock and kill the fish. So the key to solving old tank syndrome (or adjusting the fish to different water chemistry) is slow and steady. Starting with small water changes spaced days apart, to give the fish time to adjust slowly, gradually building up to larger changes, until things like the high nitrates have been diluted out and the pH, GH, KH and other untested aspects of the water chemistry are much closer to the new source water.

So that's one of the reasons we always bang on about maintaining a water change routine, and keeping on top of doing water changes, and changing a good percentage of the water on a weekly basis. Then when there's a problem, you can do large water changes one after the other if needed, until the problem has been diluted. :)
 

Valkyrie_Lips

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While I totally agree that 25% isn't really a big enough water change to properly dilute ammonia/nitrite/nitrates - someone changing 25% daily is really changing the same amount of water total, as someone doing 50% every other day ;)


The key is to maintain regular, large water changes so that your water chemistry remains chemically close to your source water. If a tank is stable, not overstocked, well planted etc, then many of us change 50-75% weekly. A tank that's more heavily stocked or less planted, or less establised, would need more than this. But if the tank is well maintained with regular water changes, then the source water will be close enough to the tank chemistry that you could theoretically do back to back 100% water changes, one after the other all day, without it being a problem (besides the stress to the fish from you mucking about with their tank constantly) as long as the water is declorinated, and the temperature has been matched to the tank temperature.


If there's an emergency then, whether that's a sick or dead fish, a huge ammonia spike, your toddler pouring a whole bottle of fish food in the tank, if the tank gets contaminated with something - whatever the problem is, then emergency water changes are essential. The bigger the problem, the larger and more frequent the water changes needed to fix it. I ask for 50-75% emergency water change if there is a problem in a tank, any problem, since that's usually enough to buy some time to figure out what the problem is, test the water etc. Even if you find the ammonia is still high or something, and then do another 70% water change an hour later. It's crucial to dilute the toxin, and give the fish fresh clean water, so they're better able to handle whatever illness may be ailing them.

The exception to "huge water changes, often, immediately" - is "old tank syndrome". If a tank hasn't had a water change for a long time, or only very small and infrequent changes, then usually nitrates have built up to a super high level, pH and many other aspects of the water chemistry will have drifted and won't be the same as the source water, and suddenly changing those things with large water changes can easily shock and kill the fish. So the key to solving old tank syndrome (or adjusting the fish to different water chemistry) is slow and steady. Starting with small water changes spaced days apart, to give the fish time to adjust slowly, gradually building up to larger changes, until things like the high nitrates have been diluted out and the pH, GH, KH and other untested aspects of the water chemistry are much closer to the new source water.

So that's one of the reasons we always bang on about maintaining a water change routine, and keeping on top of doing water changes, and changing a good percentage of the water on a weekly basis. Then when there's a problem, you can do large water changes one after the other if needed, until the problem has been diluted. :)

I definitely mis-read their post I thought they said they were currently doing 25% every other day. lol. Regardless, I would still recommend 50% every other day instead to reduce the stress that can come with daily WCs.

I'm sure OP will appreciate the extra information about water chemistry the importance of tank maintenance/water changes. I on the other hand have plenty of experience and already know all about water changes and water chemistry. I run a blackwater tank. ;)
 

AdoraBelle Dearheart

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I definitely mis-read their post I thought they said they were currently doing 25% every other day. lol. Regardless, I would still recommend 50% every other day instead to reduce the stress that can come with daily WCs.

I'm sure OP will appreciate the extra information about water chemistry the importance of tank maintenance/water changes. I on the other hand have plenty of experience and already know all about water changes and water chemistry. I run a blackwater tank. ;)

Sorry, I was only correcting the maths when I quoted you, the rest of the ramble was trying to help OP! I'd love to see the blackwater tank, if there's a pic or thread here? Was just talking about adding more tannins to my new set up earlier. :)
 

Valkyrie_Lips

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Sorry, I was only correcting the maths when I quoted you, the rest of the ramble was trying to help OP! I'd love to see the blackwater tank, if there's a pic or thread here? Was just talking about adding more tannins to my new set up earlier. :)

No worries, it was good information for anyone reading the thread! I don't have a thread going, but here's a picture of what it looks like at the moment. I'm planning on swapping out the driftwood soon for a larger piece to fill the space better.

That's awesome! Me and my betta are huge fans of tannins. :)

updatedtankshot.jpg
 
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AdoraBelle Dearheart

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No worries, it was good information for anyone reading the thread! I don't have a thread going, but here's a picture of what it looks like at the moment. I'm planning on swapping out the driftwood soon for a larger piece to fill the space better.

That's awesome! Me and my betta are huge fans of tannins. :)

View attachment 160502
Wow, super pretty betta, and tank! He's a great colour for a blackwater tank, looks like he's glowing, he really stands out! Like the tank a lot too, the light being brighter and shining through in the centre, piercing the darker water looks cool and dramatic too. Please make a journal thread if you wind up getting different decor and re-arranging. A central island larger piece with the centre light hitting it would look really striking and nice. :)
 
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Navfish

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Awesome, how is your betta looking and acting since the water changes? What are the test results for ammonia/nitrite/nitrate now since the water changes?


This is the worming/internal parasites thread: https://www.fishforums.net/threads/what-to-do-if-your-fish-has-stringy-white-poop.466276/

This is the important part you need to know about medications for treating worms:


I'm not in the US, so I don't know which brands of medication are available to you. But you need to search for worming medication containing flubendazole - meaning you can treat both round and flatworms at the same time. Let us know the brand names of the medicines you can find so we check the ingredients first before you order or add anything to the tank.

If you cannot get a medication containing flubendazole, then you would need one that contains Levamisole, and another med containing praziquantel. Bit more complicated since you'd need to do multiple rounds of treatment, and not necessarily at the same time. Flubendazole would be easier if you can find a med containing that. We cannot tell whether your betta has round or flatworms without seeing the worms themselves, and fish can easily be carrying both. So since you've seen stringy white poop and he's had other symptoms, we need to treat for both types of worms to be safe.


This is also important. Worms inside the fish pass eggs, which are easily transferred if you use the same equipment for different tanks, or put your hands in one tank then a different one, or move fish from one tank to another. (as most of us do!). Fish eat those eggs and then have their own worm burden. So if one of your fish has worms, unless it's in a quarantine tank with no shared equipment, need to treat all your tanks to be sure you've wiped out any worms and eggs.
Oh no ur fine! I understood what u meant completely and that it was some positive advice! I just get rlly upset when things like this happen. I plan to fix everything thats been going wrong in the betta tank :) But there's good news.

Update: I've done water changes and I checked on him and he's looking a lot better, not at the bottom anymore and still eating well. When I saw him poop today, it was brown (normal color). Less clamped fins! Does this indicate that he's better now?
Heres what he looks like now:

Still planning to keep on doing water changes for the next week or so until I get good meds. If it seems like he's made a full recovery, which I plan to do an update later next week, I won't put the meds in.

Thank you guys for all your help, especially @AdoraBelle Dearheart! I was about to go insane but you helped me figure everything out!
 
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