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Old 02-27-2013, 09:18 PM   #1 
CrazyDiamond
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Mysterious Fin Tears

Or at least they are a mystery to me, I came home from class at about 3:30pm today and noticed a very small hole in my fish's dorsal fin, very tiny like maybe a needle made it. My fish is very active and spends his day swimming back and forth across the front of his tank and after several hours the hole got bigger and bigger and now it's a full tear in his dorsal fin. While taking pics of it I noticed he also has what appear to be abrasions on his caudal as well -_- as the hours pass these little abrasions are slowly getting larger as well and one is becoming a pin sized hole now, it's only a matter of time before his tail it torn up too. I don't understand why his fins are getting damaged all he has in his tank are two silk plants and several more live ones, gravel, marbles, his filter with baffle and his heater and thermometer. His water levels are all normal and where they need to be and his tank is ten gallons and he seems happy.
Floyd is my first fish and I'd like not only know how to deal with this, but maybe find out why it even happened. It's rather upsetting, I've had him for two weeks and two days and he's been happy and healthy until now.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:19 PM   #2 
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Have you tested everything in his tank by taking a pair of women's panty hose and dragging them through all the decor and plants?

Is his filter prefiltered?

More info please: http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=49233
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:14 PM   #3 
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Housing
What size is your tank? 10 Gallons
What temperature is your tank? Never below 77 and usually gets up to 82 during the day
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? No other animals

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? Omega flakes, bloodworms once a week
How often do you feed your betta fish? Every 12 hours except on Fridays when I fast him

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Every Friday
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 20%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Conditioner then plant fertilizer

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

Ammonia: 0
Nitrite: 0
Nitrate: 0
pH: 7
Hardness: soft (test is hard to read but it's less than 1dGH or about 100ppm)
Alkalinity: Haven't tested recently but last time it was around 200

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? His fins are tearing :/
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Not really, he has always been very active and is still fairly high energy
When did you start noticing the symptoms? Today, or about 9 hours from the time of this post.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? No, I don't know what I should do
Does your fish have any history of being ill? No, but then again I've only had him two weeks.
How old is your fish (approximately)? I would guess about 3-4 months

I have not tried the hose but, he has had the same plants in his tank for the whole 17 days I've had him, why would he be getting tears now? Is it possible he is overly active, I notice he swims so energetically for such extended periods of time he seems to get winded or looks somewhat frantic in his swimming. He isn't flaring while he does it or anything, so he's not stressed I wouldn't think but all that swimming just makes his abrasions worse and they get bigger until they are tears. It just kinda sucks :/ should I put him in his cup and float him in the tank to keep him in a smaller area until he heals and should I start medicating him?
As far as prefiltering my filter, did you mean if it was properly cycled? It is if that is what you meant.
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:52 PM   #4 
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The temperature swings are a problem. To help resolve it, you should keep your tank on an interior wall away from exterior doors, windows and any air vents. These will all cause swings. You should place your heater near the filter so that it will circulate the water. If it's still swinging you may need to keep your room water or buy a different heater that won't cause 5 degree temp swings during the day.

This isn't the cause of his rips but it is causing stress, which will make him more likely to be ill.

Over flaring can cause ripped fins, but swimming fast won't, unless it's snagging on something.

Wait though.. in 2 weeks you have done only 2 20% water changes and you have no ammonia? This isn't adding up.. do you have a very heavily planted tank with both stem and root plants? What type of testing kit are you using?
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Old 02-28-2013, 01:21 AM   #5 
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I was not aware that temp swings could effect his health, only too cold temps, thanks :)

I've had the tank for exactly four weeks, I did a pretty big change just before I got the fish when I got the tank cycled (about 75%) then added BB just to be sure and waited a day, checked the ammonia and it was .25 so I went and got a fish. But yes since I've had him I've only done two 20% water changes. My plants are wisteria, amazon sword and java fern, they are all well established at this point and have new growth and whatnot though the wisteria lost a few leaves at first. I am using the API Master Kit and carefully following all the instructions, the ammonia test is difficult to read, between 0 and .25 the colors almost look the same to me. 0 is indicated by yellow and .25 by a very slight greenish-yellow, last I checked which was today (I check every Wednesday) it looks very yellow to me. So I think his water is fine, just hope his seemingly harmless silk plants aren't the problem :/ that would be a bummer.
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Old 02-28-2013, 02:53 PM   #6 
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I think I may have found the problem after trying the pantyhose trick today. I have this in his tank;
http://www.petco.com/product/118947/...ium-Plant.aspx
The leaves are silk but those fuzzy green looking things on it are a pliable plastic, I thought they would be okay but they snag on the panty hose. I removed them from the plant immediately and trimmed off or sanded down anything else that may catch on Floyd's fins and placed it back in his tank. I hope that helps prevent anymore injuries. Do I need to medicate his water? I do a regular scheduled change tomorrow so I need to know about possibly medicating him asap.
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