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Hey everyone!

My name's Anne, I just moved to cairns from Germany to live with my boyfriend.

I signed up, because my little betta boy Barney is not feeling too well and I'd love to know what's wrong.

Thanks all,



Ok, I figured that I need to provide more Info, I was just on my phone yesterday, so sorry about that.

As I just moved 2 Months ago and wasn't allowed any other pets than fish in the apartment, I finally got introduced into the big world of aquariums. I didn't have a big budget and as bettas are surface breathers, I realised that one of them pretty boys would be great for me.

I've had Barney for 2 months now and he was always great, beautiful and such a joy to watch and teach tricks to. As I live in Cairns, I didn't think I would need a heater for the water and a filtre is just not affordable for me at the moment. Barney lives in a 10l Tank with colourful gravel, a little shipwreck and a plant in it that's grown on a piece of driftwood.

I don't like to hear any comments about "how can you do that to a fish, a betta should always have a filtered and heated tank, you're unbelievably cruel, blablabla" that helps neither me nor the fish and I always had the impression that Barney was happy.

What I usually did (after having done lots of research about caring for bettas that don't live in a filtered and heated tank, although you read different things everywhere):

- fed him Hikari Betta Bio-Gold twice daily, 5 pellets each. The instructions say 5 to 10 pellets up to 3 times a day (I might have been overfeeding? I went down to 2 pellets twice a day)

- cleaned about 95% of the tank water once a week (including gravel, shipwreck and plant), about 20%-30% water changes every other day

- LED light is on for 8-10 hours daily

- I use tap water and use aquatopia Safe Guard on it

So what's wrong with Barney:

About a week ago his fins started being really stringy (he's a Crowntail) and the very tips of his fins turned white. He has a lump at the back of his body, about a cm before the anal fin starts (he might just be fat?). What worries me the most is that he either buries his head in the gravel under the driftwood or hides in the darkest spot of the shipwreck, where I can't see him. Occasionally he would race up to the surface to breathe and then disappear again. After a small water change he's usually the old quirky Barney for around 10 to 15 minutes until he disappears again. Sometimes he just sits on the ground and as soon as he starts floating up, he disappears again or stays on the surface, vertically in one of the corners. Last night he wouldn't even come up to eat.

I'm really desperate, especially because I can't find any info about that at all. What I was thinking: over feeding, over cleaning, water too cold? I don't know what could be the reason. So I'm asking for help :-)

Edited by Annecanflyy
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Hi Anne, welcome to the forum.

I think you should post that in 'The Clinic' section on this forum as not everybody looks in the introductions section. Sounds pretty bad, but some of the knowledgable people on here may be able to help. If you can get a photo that would help too, also some details like water temperature, pH, ammonia. The best advice for you would be in 'The Clinic' so post there as soon as possible to help save Barney! Good luck :D hope it all turns out well.

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