Q: My male betta has been at the top of his fishbowl for about a week now. He is normally a very healthy betta, but lately he just floats on the top, making bubbles. Is this normal? thank you for your time.
A: This is a good question because it is going to allow me to throw in a curve ball to most of you who are thinking just about now " I know the answer to that one! That's easy!". Most people will read the "blowing bubble" part and say: A betta blowing a bubble nest is a happy healthy betta. Which, by the way, is true! BUT (yop, there is a but, and a fairly large plump one if I may add ;) ) here is the confusing part: It may also mean just the opposite.
OK, anyone who just had a nervous breakdown (or anxiety attack), raise your hand. Oh, quite a few of you, he? Just when you thought things were simple they just got a little crazier. Let's elaborate and examine this bubble blowing - mind blowing new notion:
Did someone just yell "HELP!!!!" ? OK, Super Faith to the rescue (Woooosh): here is how to tell a healthy betta blowing a bubble nest from a sick betta making sickly betta bubbles.
In short Kacey, you need to examine these bubbles and determine whether you are looking at a nest or at a sick betta bubbles. If it is a nest, then your betta is fine. If not, then you need to treat your betta immediately. I recommend a course of either bettamax or kanacyn. See them on the medication page.
Important note: If a betta is active, (swimming around and all) AND has a few bubbles floating at the top, it does not mean it is sick. It could be that he started blowing an unorganized nest, or that a small nest he just blew got dismantled by his swimming around or water movement from a filter etc... So do not start treating a fish unless it is actually acting sick (as in not moving, clamped fins, maybe not eating etc...) EVEN if you see a few large bubbles floating about at the surface.