OK, so let me explain the situation before the questions, I recently purchased a new tank from the local sally-ann (salvation army) at a ridiculous bargain (10$ for the tank, heater, gravel, light, ornament) and I figured I would rescue a back of the shelf betta.
*note* I do not condone how petsmart treats its animals nor do I condone the cruelty that is often found in fishes at big-chain-petstores.
So my mother drove us over to petsmart and refused to go else where (she almost never changes her mind) so I decided I might aswell help out a betta in need, I found her at the very back hidden behind a few 'on the bottom and almost dead' males, she was a vision of pale flame and a great personality, she was the one for me this trip. Move ahead several hours and she is in the tank and checking out her new digs, she likes it and it seemed plenty roomy for her, after several days of thinking I decided I would attempt my first 'my' sorority (I set one up for a friend before I came down here, they are doing fine).
2 days later, we returned to petsmart (again after I strongly suggested another place) and we check out the females, I deliberately looked for similiarily sized bettas and I soon found the twins, they were spread out with one skinny twin sitting out in the open and the other twin at the very back looking a little 'feral' (she didn't look like she had seen light a couple weeks, bad blue water and a substrate of feces and food), the twins came home with several fake plants (I have real plants back in cabri, aswell as a nice same sized female) and after some prep (remade the tank, removed missy (now red female), and after some time checking each other out through their cups thye were placed in the tank.
The normal chasing and show of dominance began, missy seemed to be the top dog for the first day as she chased down and in-general just dominated the twins, I would describe the scene as missy being a nazi and the twins being jewish in hiding, missy was a beast. This morning I noticed that one of the twins was clearly missys chew toy, with some shredded fins and a newly acquired shyness, missy was also still the dominant, however as of an hour ago missy is in hiding from the non-shredded twin, maybe twin 2 (non shredded) got sick of seeing twin 1 in hiding, or maybe she just wanted some power, but twin 2 has definately taken charge and now chases and terrorizes missy (no harm to missy yet).
whats in the tank:
- 3 female bettas (missy and the twins)
- several hiding places + fake plants
- no snails or shrimp (I will add some when I get back back home)
1. Should I feel bad because I like seeing the tables turned on missy?
2. Does the shredded twin need any special care for her proper recovery?
3. What signs should I look out for in this situation? I have never seen such a turn of events in my fish before.
4. When they get older will they become more or less agressive?
5. Why does the non-shredded twin allow the shredded twin to chase her out of her hides? it seems to me that twin 2 is actually just defending twin 1 and sees twin 1 as more dominant (shredded seems to have more power over non-shredded even though missy beat up shredded and non-shredded beat up missy)
6. Why are bettas so gotdarn addicting?
P.S. I heard epsom salt helps healing fins from a friend but I can't verify this online.
P.S.S. the tank is a little larger than 5 gals, maybe 7.5 or something like that, it's the first I've found, I also do weekly water changes of 95% (I always leave enough water to cover the gravel), the fish are removed during the water change and kept seperate in their dixie tanks, will this cause any trouble in the future? also I plan on upgrading to a 20 gal long when I get back home.