Velvet is one of the most common ailments to affect Bettas. And, it can quickly move through a fish room and infect every fish before you know your fish is even sick. Early discovery and treatment is the key to successful treatment and fish recovery. This disease is also known as Rust or Gold Dust disease and it is caused by one of several species of a tiny parasite known as Piscinoodinium.
Bettafix is a fungicide and antibacterial agent that destroys parasites. It also heals skin damage and helps new fins to grow back. So, if your fish has extensive body damage, you can use bettafix to treat velvet or other illnesses.
Quarantine Anything New That You Add to the Tank
By this, I mean don’t add any new fish, plants, or decorations to your tank unless you’ve thoroughly disinfected them first. This includes anything that has come into contact with other tanks, such as nets and clean-up crew members like snails.
Before adding new fish to your tank, you should set up a small hospital tank of 2-3 gallons with an operational filter and airstone for aeration.
Next, pour water into the tank, add some of the Seachem Prime medication, and wait for the medication to take effect (usually about 30 minutes).
To ensure your fish is totally safe and free of parasites, keep it in isolation for 7-10 days before introducing it to your tank.
To quarantine plants, you can use a 30-minute bath in a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution to clean them, then rinse them with clean water. This will eliminate any pests or illnesses that may be on the plants.
Even though creatures, such as snails, shrimp, and dwarf crayfish don’t need medications, you should still quarantine them before adding them to your main aquarium. A general rule of thumb would be two weeks for snails and four weeks for shrimps and dwarf crayfish.
Maintain the Tank Regularly
Tank maintenance is essential for the removal of parasites, bacteria, and other unwanted organisms from your aquarium.
For the best results, do a 20-25% water change once a week. This will help to remove any build-up of toxins in the water that can harm your fish.
Additionally, you should clean the filter with water from your recent water change. This will help to remove any waste or debris build-up and keep the helpful bacteria essential to your nitrogen cycle alive.
Finally, you should vacuum the gravel and scrub the algae off the walls of the tank. This will help to keep the water clean and free of harmful toxins.
How Long Does It Take to Get Rid of Velvet in My Bettas?
The parasites that cause velvet in betta fish can take anywhere from a few days to a few weeks to completely eliminate, depending on the intensity of the infection.
However, it might take much longer or less time, so don’t get discouraged if your fish doesn’t seem to be getting better immediately.
In case the symptoms don’t clear up, or if they seem to be getting worse, it is crucial to take your fish to the vet for a check-up to rule out other causes of the disease.
What Is the Cause of Velvet Disease?
The Oodinium pillularis parasite is the cause of velvet in fish, and it can live in both fresh and salt water.
The parasite comes from infected fish and can be spread through contact with other fish or contaminated equipment. Also, live food, such as brine shrimp or bloodworms, might carry this parasite.
Can Betta Velvet Disease Be Fatal?
Velvet is easy to treat in the early stages and when you take quick action. However, if you don’t treat the disease in its early stages, it can become fatal.
This is because the parasites will eventually attack the gills of your fish and make it difficult for them to breathe.
Can Betta Fish Get Velvet Disease from Bacteria or a Virus?
Velvet disease is an infection that’s caused by parasites only. These parasites are highly complex and will only survive for 48 hours if they don’t have a host. However, bacteria can live forever in the environment outside of the tank, even without a host.
Additionally, viruses require a host to replicate while the velvet parasite produces asexually outside of the host. Plus, viruses target a minimal set of cell types, whereas velvet affects a wider variety of cells.
How Quickly Can Velvet Be Spread?
Velvet is an incurable and highly contagious illness. Once your Betta has been diagnosed with velvet disease, you must keep a close eye on the other fish in your tank, as they may develop symptoms within days.