Background: We’ve had the betta for about a month, which we got as my 8-year old’s ‘my easy first pet’. It has been far more work than I bargained for, and I’m (deeply frustrated but) grateful to have this forum to help me out.
Our setup: Veiltail betta, a very active guy, frequently glass-surfing at the rear of the tank. A 5.5g, filtered, heated aquarium with 50% water changes weekly, using Stress Coat
as treatment. Only silk plants; filter baffled with cut plastic water bottle. Our water parameters have always been great (I've brought it in to be tested at least weekly), and the temperature 76-80 degrees. We feed 5 pellets of Hikari bio-gold once a day.
About two weeks ago, I started noticing some white edges on his fins. Then, overnight last week, he lost a chunk of his caudal and dorsal fins (not the anal fin), and the edges of both became quite ragged (previous post w before and after pics: http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=461762
). I suspected fin rot, but it didn’t really look like it, and a forum member here suggested possible fin biting? Two fish store employees suggested the intake on the filter might have caught it.
Steps taken: I brought the water in to be tested the day his fins got bad, and it looked great (0 ammonia and 0 nitrites). I have bumped him up to two 50% water changes weekly, and added 1tbsp aquarium salt per 5g (replacing as needed with each water change). I have increased his tank temperature so it’s between 78-80 degrees. I baffled the intake for the filter with aquarium foam in case it was the filter intake.
Since then the edges seem to maybe have become more jagged, I'm honestly not sure, but not more big chunks out. Columnaris maybe? I don’t see any white anywhere else on his body, though. Filter intake damage, and it just needs to heal? Or fin biting with amazing reach across the dorsal fin?
Should I just treat with Betta Revive, in case it’s something non-mechanical (that is, not filter damage or fin biting but rather fin rot or columnaris)?
Should I switch him to a smaller/emptier environment to see if maybe it's ripping on something in the tank, or if he's stressed by the size of the tank or something?
Keep up the salt (or stop the salt, since it's been a week), and just see if it gets worse?
Please see pics. I apologize that there are so many and this is so long, but one thing I’ve learned is that it’s dang hard to get good fin pictures of bettas! I also took one of the tank in case it’s helpful.
Thanks in advance for your help!