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Old 07-23-2012, 07:40 PM   #1 
LittleWatty
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Biting or Rot?

Just got this guy from Petco today, and he's in a very dilute AQ salt treatment tank right now (1/4 tsp to 3 gallons). Partially for his fins, partially to ward off any diseases he might have developing from living in a cup for who knows how long. I'll be upping the dose to about 1tsp/1gallon slowly over each water change until those fins heal. Anyway. What I would like to know is if you all think its biting or rot? He's got a decent chunk missing of his caudal fin, and what looks like a tear in his anal fin. I'd flare him for better pictures, but he doesn't like the camera, and I don't want to stress him with that until he's settled. But he does flare at the mirror, so if its an absolute must to see the extent of the damage, I can try.

I didn't think it necessary in this case to fill out the questionnaire, but I will if asked.
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Old 07-23-2012, 07:53 PM   #2 
vilmarisv
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I don't see any rot. Looks like he bit his tail but it's already healing. The black edges are probably his natural coloring.
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Old 07-23-2012, 07:57 PM   #3 
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I figured the black edges were his colors, but I wanted to double check. Also wanted to see if I'd have to be doubley careful about watching this guy, in case it was rot. And... I wanted to see if I might have a tail biter on my hands. I'm hoping he was just angry at being kept in a cup by his brothers (there were 4 others nearby that looked near identical) and decided to take it out on the pretty red thing following him around lol
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Old 07-23-2012, 08:30 PM   #4 
Kenny G
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It's pretty sure it tail-biting by the edges. But as others said the black color is a sign that he is healing. Nice looking fish. Congrats.
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Old 07-28-2012, 05:07 PM   #5 
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I think I have a confirmed case of a tail biting betta. I did a water change today, and let my king and my dragonscale flare at each other for a little while. While they were, I looked at my king's tail to find it had a few more chunks missing than it did the first day. He's been on 1tsp of AQ salt for a few days, and the chunks are rounded, so I'm pretty darned sure its not rot. Going to have to do my research now on how to keep tail biting down.

Photo: First day on the left, today on the right.
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Old 07-28-2012, 07:45 PM   #6 
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Most of the time tail-biting is usually caused by stress. First try to figure out the stress factors instead of using AQ Salt. There are a few things you can try. If your tank has decorations try moving things around. If not get some.

Also make sure your betta has a hiding spot like some type of cave or use a cup. It's good for your betta to have some place to go for privacy and it reduces stress. If your betta is in a new environment it can cause stress. Also bright lights. My betta used to bite his tail. He never did it for the first month. Then I figured out it was bright lights that stressed him. I now use a softer light and brought him a cave which he uses all the time. Now its been over 3 weeks and he no longer bites his tail.

Use stress coat for now to help regrow his fins and try to dim the lights or put him someplace with less light.

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Old 07-28-2012, 08:28 PM   #7 
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He's got several silk plants, a floating betta log, two large dried (now soaked) oak leaves, and I just put in about 5 or 6 java fern. I kept him under a black towel for the past few days, so he only got light when I fed him. I have a little sinking ceramic betta log, but its got two holes that are too small for him (as he's a king). I do have a large plastic log that he'd fit in with no problems, but it wouldn't be much of a hiding place because its only got one way to fit in the tank - which would leave him in sight of the whole room. However, I think he's got enough plants in the tank to feel safe. If not, I'll have to figure something else out. He's just too big for all but one of my possible "hidey-holes."

I had him on the AQ salt to hold off any infection from the tail biting, as well as to ward off any diseases from living in a cup as he's a rather new fish. At the 10 day mark, I'll take him off the AQ salt for a week or so to see how he does. If he keeps biting his tail, I'll put him back on it for a couple days at a time just to ward off the infection.
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Old 07-28-2012, 10:25 PM   #8 
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Great. That sounds like a good plan of action. It's always good to give your betta a break from AQ.
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