Tail biting? - Betta Fish and Betta Fish Care
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2013, 12:49 PM Thread Starter
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Tail biting?

My fish Arata, has lost some finnage lately, at first I thought he may have caught it on a fake bonsai tree in his tank that I suspect could catch his fins. But this morning I was watching him after he ate(wondering what I would replace the bonsai tree with), and suddenly he started going around in circles while flaring at his tail fin. He looked exactly like dogs I have seen chasing their tail. He did not take a bite though, so I was wondering if those of you who have seen tail biting, is that what it looks like before they do take a bite out of their own fins?
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2013, 02:59 PM
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My betta does that all the time, Arata is just scared or excited.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2013, 03:28 PM Thread Starter
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He does always seem excited around feeding time, but he usually just jumps up out of the water.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2013, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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This is a picture I took today, does this look like tail biting? It's not fin rot, most of that happened over night.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2013, 08:12 PM
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did it kind of look like this

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X1n0T2gP3_Y

if he was swimming round in circles flaring at his tail I would suspect he is tail biting
I think my betta is a tail biter I've seen him swimming round in circles but never seen him take a bite
but his tail has U shape bite marks so i guess he does it while i'm not looking

I think they can reach the higher part of they're tail easier and thats why its more eating away at the top my bettas tails looks the same


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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-08-2013, 10:39 PM Thread Starter
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It did look like that, only he stopped pretty quickly. He made a few circles, and then stopped. Maybe he is bored with the tank and I should do something to keep him occupied exploring, if he is tail biting.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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This morning it was worse and I am convinced he is biting his tail, could it be he doesn't like when it's dark or gets bored? I wish I could just ask him, this is getting frustrating.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Susukihotaru View Post
This morning it was worse and I am convinced he is biting his tail, could it be he doesn't like when it's dark or gets bored? I wish I could just ask him, this is getting frustrating.
be sure to keep the water very clean for him because it could easily turn into fin rot.

if he's doing it over night when its dark it could be he's waking up too early in the dark and getting bored I think it might help to turn his light on earlier or turn it off later.

its very hard to find out why a betta is tail biting it can be caused by alot of different things but you know your betta best so you have the best chance of finding out why he's doing it

you could try sticking things to the glass see if it gets his attention
I put some white paper at the back of my tank because i notice he was seeing his reflection at the back of the tank when the light was off and winding him self up and i think when he gets angry he bites himself

i've heard of people floating colored bottle caps on the water to get the bettas mind of biting I've never done it myself but it might be something you can try. if you can get IAL that might help too. i've also heard rearranging the decor or getting new decor may help if he's doing because of boredom. or giving him a mirror to flare at for about 5 minutes every now and then but i don't think a mirror would help if he's doing it out of aggression it might just make him worse.


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Last edited by Indigo Betta; 06-09-2013 at 08:43 PM.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-09-2013, 11:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the ideas, I'll be sure to try some of that. I did a little rearrangement today after I got back from petsmart with new plants. I removed the bonsai tree and moved the little things already in the tank around where it was. I watched him explore it so that might get his mind of the biting. And, tonight, I'll keep the light on longer to see if that works. I've never heard of using colored bottle caps, but I might try that, too.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 06-10-2013, 08:58 AM
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Some bettas start to excessively tail bite when they're bored. I would suggest sticking something in front of his tank to look at. My fish like staring at Deja Blue water bottles because they're blue. Rearranging things around their tanks is just luike moving things on the inside. It keeps them occupied, but it doesn't mess up their tank. Imagine living in the same enviroment all your life. You'd get bored, right? I even draw on my tanks. Permanent marker will come off if you use the right cleaning solution. I'll draw little squiggles and things on the sides of the tank so no one can see them, but my bettas get to enjoy them. Hope this helps! :)

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