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Old 02-17-2013, 02:09 PM   #1 
iwishiwereazebra
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Pinholes in Caudal Fin and Plant

Hello, everyone! I'm new to the forums and I have a couple of questions.

I have two bettas and a cycled, divided 10 gallon tank. Right now, only one (Miles) is in the tank, as the other (Marvin, my little buddy) has dropsy, has been quarantined and is being treated in a cycled 3 gallon.

I noticed yesterday that Miles has pinholes in his caudal (tail) fin, and one on his dorsal. I wasn't sure of what to do besides a water change and adding aquarium salt to the tank. I then noticed that one of my plants (an aponogeton I've had since it was a bulb) also has pinholes in it. I found it strange because it is on the other side of the divider (not near Miles). Could this be some sort of bacteria or parasite in the tank?

I've had my fish in bowls but when I learned about tanks and the nitrogen cycle, I realized the importance of it. I just established the cycle a few weeks ago.

Housing
What size is your tank? 10 gallon cycled
What temperature is your tank? 82 degrees F
Does your tank have a filter? Yes - Tetra Whisper PF10, soda bottle baffle
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? On the side without the filter, I have an air stone.
Is your tank heated? Yes
What tank mates does your betta fish live with? Just himself at the moment (until when/if Marvin is well enough to go in his side)

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Pellets and freeze-dried bloodworms...usually bloodworms
How often do you feed your betta fish? twice per day (once in the morning, once at night).

Maintenance

How often do you perform a water change? Once a week.
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 25%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Tetra Aquasafe. (Also recently added 1tbsp of aquarium salt)

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

Ammonia: This is a tricky one for me. Much closer to 0ppm than .25ppm (my tap water also has .25ppm ammonia in it, I use that for a control test).
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 5.0 - 10.0
pH: 7.4
Hardness:N/A
Alkalinity: N/A

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Pinholes have developed in his caudal fin. They might be from flaring because he kept seeing his reflection until I added more plants to his side of the tank (I also changed the bulb in the light from a daylight to a 50/50).
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? None. He is active and a curious fish. He eats well. He doesn't flare as much since I added more plants.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Yesterday.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? I added 1tbsp of aquarium salt to the tank.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No.
How old is your fish (approximately)? Not sure. My sister picked him out at Petco, we've had him for about a week.

The thing I found weird was that there are pinholes both in Miles's fin and also in the aponogeton. All of the other plants (two giant hairgrass, a java fern, another aponogeton and an anubias) seem to be healthy and growing. I have one medium sized silk plant in there, as well.

I am new to the aquarium hobby but have learned so much in the past few months. I am always interested in learning more. Many thanks in advance for any advice!!
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:22 PM   #2 
BettaGurl79
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My only thought would be to check the silk plant to see if it snags on panty hose. My Betta had a similar hole appear in his dorsal. I took all of my decorations out and gave them the panty hose test. One of my silk plants snagged the hose. Since it's removal My betta hasn't had any more holes appear and the one minor hole healed after a week. I would buy some stress coat and use that in replacement of the water conditioner until the holes heal.
I have a black thumb when it comes to live plants so I am sorry I will be of no help with why one of your plants has minor holes in it . Good luck !
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Old 02-17-2013, 02:33 PM   #3 
iwishiwereazebra
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Thank you Bettagurl. I haven't done the pantyhose test on the silk plant but I definitely will. I only added it yesterday after I'd noticed the pinholes, but it never hurts to double check. I will also stock some Stresscoat, as well.

I do have terra cotta plants in there. Maybe the edge might have hurt his fin...
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Old 02-17-2013, 07:51 PM   #4 
callistra
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If you could share photos it might be easier to tell if it's a snag or other issue.

Since your tap has ammonia, I would use Prime as your conditioner. It will render the ammonia into a less harmful form that your biofilter can eat through more quickly.

Also as a side note, blood worms are like feeding potato chips - poor nutritional value and high in fat. I would not feed them more than once a week in replace of a pellet meal, and then only feed one. The pellets should have the first two or three ingredients as whole fish, not fish meal or wheat, and should be his staple meal. He also needs one day a week to fast.

Also you can't add aquarium salt with live plants.. hope they are not live.
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Old 02-18-2013, 11:34 AM   #5 
iwishiwereazebra
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Hi Callistra,

Unfortunately, they are live plants. They don't seem to be doing too badly, but I'm wondering if I should temporarily remove them from the tank or do a water change to keep them from dying? (I put a tablespoon in my tank the other day).

I will try to get a picture of Miles's fins. He swims around a lot and he never stays in one place long!

Thank you for the tip on the bloodworms. I fed both of my boys pellets this morning (rich in meat as you suggested) and they went along with that just fine.

I will also be picking up some Prime this week.

Many thanks!
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