I read about the fin curling and it isn't the cause that I'm wondering about - I know for a fact it's probably the Ph which is at 8. So here's what I wanna know:
How should I bring down the Ph safely?
I'm extremely hesitant to use chemicals because I've read on the packaging
that the stuff is really, really powerful - as in, bring a 500+ g pool down from Ph 8 to Ph 3 powerful. I don't wanna use that - it seems way, way too likely my poor crowntail, Sev, and dragonscale(in a devided tank; they can't even really see one another), Tobuscus, would get a terrible shock that would possibly be fatal. I only want it to be at maybe 7 or 6, and I don't want to use something that might kill my fish. So what should I use? I've read that chemicals cause swings in levels. I have also heard that Indian Almond leaves(I think that's the name) work, but I don't have a clue how to find them. Also Peat or drift wood, but I've read that those don't work("Peat does more harm than good" - how?). What should I use to bring the Ph down gradually and safely, then stabilize it?
And will Sev's fins and tail uncurl when the Ph is lowered?
I'm terrified the answer will be no! He's a black orchid crowntail, beautiful, spawns well(Both females we've tried succeeded), and is very docile for a male betta. None of that's changed, but when I got him well over a month ago, before his tail curled, it looked like the rays on his tail had fiber optic lights on the end because they are pale bluish-white(and that's just his color, not a disease). Now they look dull and not nearly as gorgeous... I know I've read that it doesn't hurt him at all, but I really, really don't like that his tail's all curled. So, has anyone delt with this, and once it was solved did your betta's tail become straight again?
Thanks in advance to anyone who helps out. I really want my fish to be in water that's not as hard - even though I know it isn't genetic, I'm kind of worried that it might make it more difficult to sell his offspring if Sev's tail and flare aren't as attractive as they once were.
He is in a devided ten-gallon tank with a biofilter, by the way. I don't have any substrate in the bottom just yet. There are a few floating plants and all the perameters are fine.
I'm attaching a couple of photos of Sev(both happen to be while he's spawning with the same female on different dates). The first, with the female in full view is before his tail got bad, and I think you'll be able to tell in the second one.