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I have a fish. He is a male betta, a nice dark magenta colour, and his name is Aleister. I bought him back in September to cheer up my dorm room a bit, and he has been consistently good company ever since. He started in a little plastic half-gallon tank, but after a month or so of that, I upgraded him to a slightly less little one-gallon tank with a built-in light and air pump. He has been pretty happy there, for the most part. I condition his water, I keep it at a decent temperature for him (about 72-74; a little low for a betta, but he's used to it), I clean his tank regularly. I fed him a steady diet of little pellets of fish food, which he would eagerly gobble up twice a day, three or four pellets at each feeding.
Here's the problem: he hasn't eaten anything in about a week now. I drop a few pellets in, I go to class, then when I get back they're all still floating on the surface of the water. I try to feed him during the evening; same thing, when I check on him an hour later he hasn't touched a bite. I scoop out the food so it doesn't dissolve into his water, but the next day when I put fresh stuff in, the same thing happens. Prior to this, he used to always devour his food within a few seconds of it hitting the water, so... I'm a little concerned.
Possible contributing factors:
I cleaned his tank thoroughly a week ago, refilling it with fresh (treated, room-temperature) water. I've done that plenty before, though, and it's never put him off his feed.
A day or two after I changed his water, I took out the plastic plants in his tank and replaced them with a nice real plant. I rinsed the real plant off and pulled the dead bits out of it before I put it in his tank, and he seems to be fine with the plant itself: he still has plenty of room to hide, and he seems to like just kind of resting on one of the fronds of the plant and chilling out.
When I cleaned his tank, I broke the little air stone that diffuses the air from his pump. I jury-rigged it mostly back together, but now, instead of the air piped into the bottom of the tank floating up to the bottom in tiny little bubbles, it's floating up in somewhat bigger bubbles, which makes the surface of the water a bit choppier. It's not exactly six foot swells up there, just a little bouncier than what he's used to. Most of the water in the tank is still quite calm, though, it's only the surface that gets somewhat shaky. I've tried turning off the air pump during feedings, but even when his water is dead calm, he won't eat.
I thought maybe he was just sick of his food, so I picked up a little container of freeze-dried bloodworms. He doesn't seem to have any interest in them either, though.
So... any advice on what could be up with my Alliefish? He's kind of a big deal to me, and while it may seem silly to get all sentimental over a $5 fish, I would be pretty upset if he died of starvation while under my care.
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