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Old 06-24-2010, 09:58 AM   #1 
christianchick2007
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Tearing Fins

I have a red male betta (not a crown tail) that lives in a 1.5 gallon filtered tank. There is also a heater in it to make sure it stays the right temp. To condition the water, I use the Tetra Bettasafe Water Conditioner. I had one of those plastic plants in the tank for a while, then I noticed that all of his fins were starting to tear. I have been using Melafix Antibacterial Fish Remedy that has tea tree oil in it for 7 days now without the filter in the tank. The bottle says I can continue to do the treatment as necessary.. I do not want to keep using this if it will not be any help. This is the first time that a betta of mine has started doing this. I was wondering if there is anything else that I could do?

Thanks in advance for any advice!



Below is a link to the conditioner I use. Also, there is a link to the plant that was in there.

http://www.google.com/products/catal...CAgQ8gIwADgA#p

http://www.petworldshop.com/pictures...tic-plants.jpg
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Old 06-24-2010, 10:23 AM   #2 
Jakr959
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I have a simalor problem, my advice is to make sure to take the plant out, then cmtiue with the treat ment for about 5 days, if nothing happens stop. Also, I recomend getting a live plant, bettas love them
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Old 06-24-2010, 10:38 AM   #3 
mjbn
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live or silk plant, either will do, but live would always be better and has its own care needs. but use garlic juice and aquarium salt and feed a high protein diet. i think the reason his fins are cut up are the plastic plant.. My sister's having the same problem with her betta cuz of some plastic plants. take them out ASAP
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Old 06-24-2010, 10:42 AM   #4 
Mizzle
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I would discontinue using the melafix product. it has been known to cause harm to bettas labyrinth glans, which allows them to breathe. Just keep his water clean and continue using the API salt during your water changes and his fins will regrow naturally.
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Old 06-24-2010, 11:01 AM   #5 
christianchick2007
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I should mention that the bottle says to use 1tsp. for every 10 gal. I've been using about 1/8 tsp.. Would epsom salt be just as good or no?

Last edited by christianchick2007; 06-24-2010 at 11:13 AM.
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Old 06-24-2010, 12:34 PM   #6 
christianchick2007
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How often should I change the water with being a filtered tank?
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Old 06-24-2010, 03:41 PM   #7 
Adastra
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Only use kosher salt or aquarium salt. Epsom salt has diuretic properties--it can be used for some constipation/bloating problems, but I would not use it for this, as it may cause unnecessary stress.

I would discontinue use of the melafix. Your fish should be fine with just clean water. Unfortunately, a tank this size is too small to undergo the nitrogen cycle, so the filter is doing you very little good aside from making the tank "look" more clean.

Fish constantly excrete ammonia from their gills, kind of like urine. In such a small closed system there is no place for this poisonous ammonia to go, and no bacteria to break it down into less harmful compounds. Even when the tank looks clean, it still may contain an lethal amount of ammonia. The only way to remove all of the ammonia in an uncycled fish tank is through 100% water changes. In a tank this small, you will need to change 100% of the water and clean out the tank with hot water every 3-4 days.

The alternative to this is to get a tank with a filter that is large enough to be cycled. Cycled tanks only need 1 partial change a week versus 100% changes every few days. Small tanks can also have psychological consequences for your betta. Bettas who are confined this way often develop neurotic behaviors such as glass surfing and tail biting (which is probably causing the rips you're seeing). Many become obese from lack of exercise and die from ammonia poisoning.

I suggest upgrading your tank in the future and researching the nitrogen cycle.
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Old 06-24-2010, 04:51 PM   #8 
Oldfishlady
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With just torn fins and no secondary infection, I would first remove the cause (plastic plant) and start making daily 50% water changes for 5 days and then stay on top of regular water changes of 50% twice a week with substrate vacuuming with one of the twice weekly 50% water changes.
Give your filter media a good swish/rinse in old tank water with a water change 1-2 times a month or if the water flow slows to remove the big pieces of gunk, you want the filter media to look dirty but still have good water flow.
If it looks as if he has fin rot, I like to use QT and 100% daily water changes with aquarium salt 1tsp/g for 10 days
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Old 06-24-2010, 05:34 PM   #9 
christianchick2007
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The fins are just tearing, no sign of rotting. I had taken that one plant out about a month ago, but replaced it with one like this: http://www.usifloral.com/images/prod...8/83274lav.jpg

Should that one be taken out as well?
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Old 06-24-2010, 05:38 PM   #10 
Oldfishlady
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christianchick2007 View Post
The fins are just tearing, no sign of rotting. I had taken that one plant out about a month ago, but replaced it with one like this: http://www.usifloral.com/images/prod...8/83274lav.jpg

Should that one be taken out as well?
If it is plastic- then yes, however, you can do a snag test by using pantyhose and running it over the plant and if it snags it can also snag the delicate Betta fins.
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