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Old 02-24-2012, 02:04 PM   #1 
jCo72's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Arizona
Fin rot??

Hi everyone,

I've had my betta for 3 weeks as of today. I had a plastic plant in his tank for a few weeks and I closely monitored his fins to make sure there was no damage from it (the plastic was very soft for being plastic, IMO). I started to notice some tearing-looking pieces a few days ago so I took out the plastic plant. Since then, his fins have only gotten worse. I took pictures last night of him and within 10 hours, theres more damage already. I'm worried this may be fin rot but I haven't been able to find many pictures on google showing what this looks like.

What size is your tank? 5 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 78-79
Does your tank have a filter? yes
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? no
Is your tank heated? yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? n/a

What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Hikari Betta Bio-Gold baby pellets
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2 times/day, 4 pellets/feeding

How often do you perform a water change? 1/week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 50%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? dechlorinator

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia: n/a
Nitrite: 0 ppm
Nitrate: <20 ppm
pH: 7.6
Hardness: 250 ppm
Alkalinity: 120 ppm

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? dorsal & anal fins torn
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? it hasn't aside from him looking for food in the live plant and gravel (not sure if two problems are related)
When did you start noticing the symptoms? 2 or 3 days ago
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? no
Does your fish have any history of being ill? not that I know of
How old is your fish (approximately)? unknown

Picture of him last night. You can see the damage on the edges of his fins
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Close up picture of his dorsal fin last night
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New tear this morning
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jCo72 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2012, 02:35 PM   #2 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
Do you have any before doesn't look too bad and I don't really see any rot....that usually will look somewhat crusty and discolored.....

Sometimes the long fin males can have fin issues due to the filter/water movement as well as space...some...not all....these abnormally long delicate fins can get really tattered with use from swimming and the water movement....kinda like a flag in the wind effect.......

You may need to turn off the filter and add some IAL or dried Oak leaf to get him healed up and fins toughened up some.....sometimes the tannins will help toughen fins and scale.....

Since you caught this early-he may not need a salt treatment for now-but I would increase the water changes to 50% twice weekly for a couple of weeks-along with removing the filter, adding a tannin source and increase nutrition by adding another food to what you are already feeding-good quality varied diet fed in small frequent meals.....if you have access to live mosquito larva-offer a few rinsed for one meal a day to boost protein and you can even roll the pellets in fresh crushed garlic juice too.

How many and what species of live plants do you have....

It can sometimes take weeks to month to get full re-growth/healing and sadly if it is partly related to water movement and/or space-it may be a long term issue and all you can do is prevent secondary infections

Here is some info that may help you understand more

Lovely fella....nice is sad sometimes when the fins get beat up even with the best care......
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Old 02-24-2012, 03:17 PM   #3 
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Arizona
I have one before picture but its not that great as I took it with my phone. Click image for larger version

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I just baffled the filter yesterday but I guess it'd be best to take it off as his fins look worse.

I did add an IAL to his tank but I only put in 1/3 of the leaf. I'll add the rest of the leaf after his water change today.

I have 2 anubias plants and 1 betta bulb (the ones they sell at petco). The 2 anubias plants I got at an all freshwater store so they are decently sized and seem to be doing well so far in my tank.

The thread you posted definitely has a lot of info in it. Thank you
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Old 03-04-2012, 10:43 PM   #4 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Central Texas
His coloring is beautiful.
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Old 04-24-2012, 08:33 AM   #5 
jCo72's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Arizona
Hi everyone,

it has been 2 months since I first wrote about my fish's tail. I just took a picture of him and as you can see, his tail really hasn't gotten better. He seems to be acting normally although now he has lighter spots on his head. I don't think they are from ick or anything but I'm worried he might be stressed. I am about to do a water change today and I was wondering if I should add in any aquarium salt? Nothing about his tank has changed although during today's water change I will take out a plant as it keeps growing a stem to sprout and then it dies which only makes the water dirty.

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Old 04-25-2012, 04:27 PM   #6 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
I am still not seeing any rot...all I see is a beautiful Betta with slightly tattered, normal dark pigment edges to the fins....are the edges crusty that we can't see in the pic?

Is the filter still off or out of the tank-what is the water temp....

He may be staying in the corner due to being overwhelmed by the volume of the tank or if you have the filter running.....

Some-Not all-Long heavy fin males can sometimes have problems with carrying their heavy fins-especially in larger tanks and water movement....As well as by nature the males are not an overly active fish to start with-they will go out and hunt, explore a bit-but mostly they set up a territory at the surface waiting for a female to pass by to reproduce.
Since he is otherwise acting his normal self and eating....the tattered fins are most likely the result of the tank/filter-as I explained in the link I provided..... sometimes that is what happens to fins when they are not in a bare controlled environment...its a trade, water movement and tattered fins or boring, bare, smaller, still water and perfect fins....
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Old 04-25-2012, 05:35 PM   #7 
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Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Arizona
No, I don't think its rot because of what you had told me last time. I just wasn't sure if I should put in any salt to try and heal his fins or if this will be his normal fin problem. I do have the filter on but its baffled and there is honestly very very little water movement (I went with a sponge baffle). He doesn't stay in the corner; in fact, he constantly swims around his tank and goes in and out of his cave constantly. I just didn't think that tattered fins was something bettas live with so I was concerned. As long as he is okay then I'm okay with less than perfect fins.

Thank you, I appreciate your help.
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