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Old 04-22-2013, 11:07 PM   #1 
Purple Pixie
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Ripped Tail -- also bubble nest question

Hello All!

A few weeks ago I brought home a Blue VT (my daughter named him Mr. Bloopster). He was first housed in a 1-gallon unfiltered tank, but I have since bought a 5-gallon filtered tank, a heater, some artificial plants, an African Dwarf Frog and 5 ghost shrimp. Mr. Bloopster is so much more active in the 5-gallon tank. At times, he swims back and forth very fast in his tank.

Tonight, I noticed that there is a clean looking slice down the middle of his tail. It is not ripped all the way to the end and he is not acting any differently. Is this something I need to be concerned with?

Also, when he was in the 1 gallon tank, he made bubble nests for the week he was housed there. Now that I have transferred him into the 5-gallon tank, he has yet to make one. Does this mean he is unhappy or stressed? Could the filter be causing a slight current which make him unable to build one?

Thanks for all of your help. I have been reading many topics on this forum to better care for Mr. Bloopster for a few weeks. There is still so much for me to learn.

Last edited by Purple Pixie; 04-22-2013 at 11:11 PM. Reason: Edited to correct word in title.
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:22 PM   #2 
HeroicPoison
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Hai and welcome :)
It seems to me that your tank is over stocked, this could be causing him some stress. He may feel crowded therefore hes not making his bubble nests... for now id put him back in the 1g tank... keep his water clean and add some aquarium salt for a few days to prevent any infection... fully dissolve 1tsp in a little bit of his tank water... add it in slowly... id do a 50% water change daily so only re add half a tsp. Once about three days are over you can start clearing out the AQ salt by continuing the water changes but with clean non AQ water... Keep him warm about at 80F to promote his immune system to heal and fight off possible infection.
After all the AQ salt is out of the water you can add a double dose of API stresscoat+ for a few weeks this will help him heal and repair his slime coat from the cut and the AQ salt treatment
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:25 PM   #3 
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Oh yes and his ripped tail, take everything out of your tank and check it for any small sharp or rough places... he could be catching it on something earing it... as long as its not black around the edges its not fin rot :)
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:44 PM   #4 
Purple Pixie
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Thank you. I ran upstairs to see if it is black around the edges and it is not. I tried to get a picture of Bloopster but it is hard because it is dark out and he is swimming around like a mad man. This was the best picture I could get -- you can see the slice through his tail:




I do not have any AQ salt at home so I will have to go to the pet store tomorrow to get some.

Besides looking for black on his fins, is there anything else I should look out for?
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Old 04-22-2013, 11:50 PM   #5 
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He looks fine to me, he must have just got it caught on something and pulled it free resulting in a tear. The stresscoat+ will help that heal quickly as well :)
Just a heads up some bettas are tail biters, I think they do it out of stress or boredom, when they tail bite they have U shaped bites missing from their tail (again this is only some bettas)
Fin rot is identified by "burnt" looking edges on the fins and it just kinda loses chunks from it, holes can also be present.

For tonight put him in the smaller tank with 80% new water, start AQ salt treatment tomorrow.
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Old 04-24-2013, 02:36 AM   #6 
Purple Pixie
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Bloopster's fins look worse today. They still do not look black along the edges, but they look more ragged. I've gotten quite attached to him the past few weeks and hope he isn't going to pass away soon. I fear that I am going to wake up one morning and he will be floating at the top of the tank. :(
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Old 04-24-2013, 09:27 AM   #7 
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Welcome, and I would recommend not to use AQ salt.. the AQ salt won't help heal his fins any. As for the black on the edges.. that is fin rot brought on by bacteria attacking a damaged fin. But that only happens if the tank is not kept with proper water changes.. as long as you are doing your weekly water changes (I would say 50% due to what you have in there), then you shouldn't have to worry about rot happening.. ripped fins are common with these fish and rot doesn't happen unless they are improperly cared for in some aspect.
The salt would be for ridding the bacteria and external parasites.. which neither he has. All the salt will do at this point is put his liver and kidneys at risk. Salt can help to prevent, but not necessary as long as you keep up on your water changes.. and if he is biting his fins due to stress, the daily 100% water changes will be very stressful and he may end up doing a lot more damage to himself.

As for the rips, could of been caused by a few things - plastic plants that have points to them (silk plants are recommended due to their tissue like fins, and the fact they like to lay in plants and if they plants are sharp in any way they will tear the fins). Also could be from over flaring, as well as having a net used on them when removing them for a water change. The filter could be a little too strong and can cause tearing while he swims. Many factors for the rips. Usually with fin biting you will see a C or U, sometimes a V shape with pieces of the fin missing. A straight rip is caused by one of the factors I mentioned. It does look like he had bitten some of his fins.. which he could of done out of stress from being moved (even if he seems happy, it was still a stressful time), or the frog could be upsetting him.

Many bettas fin bite.. sadly it's the product of making such large fins. Naturally they are short finned fish, but we've created these long flowing fins.. really pretty, but they can cause drag to happen while swimming, making swimming a bit harder. So some will bite off their fins to make swimming easier on themselves, which could also be what happened - moved to a larger tank and he has to swim more, his muscles aren't as developed as he was in a smaller tank previously.. so he may be biting his fins to make swimming easier.

It's not as pretty.. but most times you just have to let them do their thing. It's like biting your nails as a bad habit... they will sometimes develop biting their fins from stress or relief and it's hard to stop. :(

As for the frog, make sure you have frog specific pellets or are feeding frozen foods such as bloodworms and brine shrimp. Avoid freeze dried foods.. just be careful as the betta would love to munch on their food before they get a chance at eating it.

Last edited by Myates; 04-24-2013 at 09:32 AM.
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Old 04-24-2013, 09:56 AM   #8 
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Hi there! I also have a blue veiltail who was my first Betta (I now have four) and responsible for my Betta fever! He started out in a 2 gallon tank but when I upgraded him to a 5 gallon I got him two African Dwarf frogs for tank mates. What I didn't realize was that if I was going to do that, I should have gone for a 10 gallon. The frogs lasted for a week and then I had to rehome them - because their presence in the tank was clearly stressing Murray out, and I caught one of the frogs lunging up and grabbing onto his beautiful long, blue tail. The frogs also do need a bit of extra attention in that they usually won't come up to the surface to feed like fish will .. that's why their pellets are the sinking kind, but even at that, I had to take chopsticks and push things like frozen bloodworms and their pellets down to exactly where they were, because they don't seem to be that smart about finding where the food is. I don't know anything about shrimp, but it does seem that for a five gallon tank you are overloaded. If it's possible to remove the frogs and put them in another tank, I would do that, because based on my experience, it's very possible that they are the cause of the damage. But speaking of those frogs ... are they the cutest things or what? A friend of a friend has my two now and just loves them!
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Old 04-24-2013, 10:00 AM   #9 
Purple Pixie
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Thank you for that detailed information.

I did not end up getting AQ salt yesterday. Instead I replaced all but one artificial plant with real plants. I do not like the look of the real plants as much, but I feel they are better for the tank and will get used to them.

I also bought a liquid water testing kit as I have been reading how inaccurate the test straps are. Unfortunately, I learned about cycling my tank after I got Bloopster so I am doing frequent water changes due to ammonia in the water. Last night the numbers for my water were (if I read the tests correctly) :

Ph: 7.6
High Ph range: 8.2
Ammonia: 1.0
Nitrite: . 25
Nitrate: 0
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Old 04-24-2013, 10:37 AM   #10 
Purple Pixie
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The frog and the fish seem to be living together fine when I am in the room with them. They pretty much ignore each other. I bought a feeding ring last week and I feed the fish first, wait about five minutes and then put the freeze dried blood worms into the ring. It takes the frog a while but it will eventually go for the food.

The over flaring might be the cause of the issues with Bloopster's fins. I thought it was healthy to have them flare so for a few minutes each night I was turning off the bedroom light and leaving the aquarium light on and Bloopster would flare at his reflection. I will stop doing that as I do jot want to stress him out.

Sorry for any typos, I am posting from my phone this morning and it is not allowing me to go back and correct my mistakes.
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