I woke up this morning to discover that large parts of Dobby's fins have turned grey with dark spots. I googled images of fin rot, and his fins aren't tattered at all. Here's a picture:
This is also in his dorsal fin. The grey areas are more see-through than they appear in the photo. I also don't think Dobby has really eaten anything since I put him in his bigger jar on Saturday. He acts like he's hungry, eats one of the flakes then spits it out, and won't touch the rest. (Maybe he's just decided he doesn't like BettaMin Flakes?)
He's still active, and there were lots of bubbles around the edges of the surface of the water this morning.
What size is your tank? 1 gallon
What temperature is your tank? 72* - stupid heater is malfunctioning, I have a new, better one ordered and on it's way.
Does your tank have a filter? no
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? none
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? BettaMin Flakes
How often do you feed your betta fish? 2x day
How often do you perform a water change? 3x week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? 2x 25%-50%, 1x 100%
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? AquaSafe, a pinch of aquarium salt, and Jungle "Plant Food Tabs 0-0-6 Plus Iron"
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters? Tested while writing this post
Ammonia: don't know
Nitrate: less than 20
pH: between 7.8 and 8.4
Alkalinity: 180? I'm not sure how to read Alkalinity because the colors on the test strip don't match the colors on the comparison chart. The color on my test strip is a bright medium blue, and on the color chart it runs from pale yellow-green to dark green/turquoise, no blue anywhere. If the blue were green, it would be less than 180.
Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? See above
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? See above
When did you start noticing the symptoms? See above
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? no
Does your fish have any history of being ill? no
How old is your fish (approximately)? 1 year +
Just curious why no one is replying? Is it a stupidly obvious question I've asked? Or have I done something to Dobby that is stupidly obvious to all of you to make him sick, if he does actually have fin rot? Am I being obsessive to the point that no one wants to respond?
If it helps, I can only see the grey, translucent areas in his fins when he's backlit with the sunlight. In that light, the grey areas of his fins look very thin, almost like the spots on a flowers petals that are rotting. However, in direct light, his fins don't look discolored or unhealthy at all.
Any feedback is appreciated, even if it's "Hey, you worry too much" or "Isn't it obvious to you why he's sick?"
Well since you want feed back the reason no one's answered yet is because nobody knows about whats happening to your Betta /=.... Yet. I'm a Betta newby So I can't really answedr your question and hopefully someone knowlagable about Bettas will come on.
I know, it's a useless answer, but now hopefully you wont wonder why no one's answering you.
BTW you're not being obsessive it's a good thing that you worry over your Betta. Also, most Bettas don't like flakes. They like brine shrimp and pellets and bloodworms that's why he doesn't eat possibly.
I searched for pictures of Betta fin rot on google images and one of the first images was a solid red betta, but part of its fins were clear-ish. If it is fin rot, then maybe the fins just turn clearish before rotting away.
I can try giving a shot at repeating some things I've seen out and about, but I'm new to betta owning, so if a more experienced member corrects me, believe them. First, seriously consider a larger tank for you betta. Most people on this site will tell you a 2.5 gallon minimum. Without a filter, you should probably be doing water changes every day, and with fin rot, one of the most important things to know is how much ammonia is in your water, which you don't have up there on your numbers. .25 is the usual ammonia reading I've heard that requires a water change. I believe aquarium salt should not be used with every water change. I believe one of those reasons is that a fish can build a tolerance so that when you want to use salt to treat a problem, like fin rot, the salt won't have as much of an effect. The heat in your tank is important, especially with a sick betta. A warm tank will help you fish heal faster, don't go too warm, too fast. You don't want it too much above 80. The cold tank could be part of the reason he's not eating, I believe it can make them lethargic. What I've read on fin rot, it shows on the edge of the fins either black or white, so don't discount the black edging. I cannot tell you whether you fish has fin rot, honestly, I found this post, because I believe my betta has it as well, and I was seeking confirmation. In general, fin rot or not, I think the best thing for your betta would be to give him a warm tank with extra clean water... make sure you use a water conditioner to get out the chlorine in new tap water and consider getting a small filter. If he does have fin rot, I've read people suggesting aquarium salt be used, but once he's healed, I don't believe you should use it again unless he is sick. I hope this helps.
That looks exactly like what my betta's fins have looked like over the past 2 or 3 months. I think it is finrot. I have kept up with frequent water changes and meds.
Ocasionally Tony (my male betta) will get small holes in his fins. They usually heal after a day or two (and a lot of changed water in between). My betta is in a small filtered tank, so water changes aren't as important (frequent) as they used to be when he lived in a bowl.
If your betta lives in an unfiltered enviroment, water changes are a MUST! I did 100% water changes everyday and occasionally (when I was lazy) every other day. Ammonia builds up very fast in small, unfiltered tanks/bowls. When Tony went 4 days without a water change, he got a serious fungal infection (everytime!), which might have lead up to the diesase he has now.
Good luck with your betta. If you find out for sure what the problem is, please post it. I think it looks like finrot but I don't know. Hope this helps!
I think you may have the start of fin rot .... poor thing ..... True, the not too warm tank could have contributed to it but I also think it could be the water. Nitrite and ammonia are highly toxic to fish and even if you have just the smallest amount, you need to change the water to detoxify it a bit. In my inexperience at the start, I cycled a tank with a betta in it and the ammonia caused his fin rot. He made a full recovery though. A good fin rot treatment in waterline myxazin. It's gentle and won't turn you tank an awful colour. Daily water changes will make a huge difference too. When you change your water, ,ake sure you are adding warm water, preferably the same temp as the aquarium water.
Oops I mean waterlife myxazin
Last edited by meeka; 11-11-2010 at 05:58 AM.
Thanks everyone for your replies and advice! I really appreciate it.
SmallFry: Has your Betta's fins shown any improvement with the treatment you're doing? How long does it take for fin rot to get better?
I'm just wondering why Dobby's getting fin rot now? I just got him two weeks ago, and for the year before that he had been living in an unheated, undecorated 2 gallon vase. They would change the water maybe once a week, or when it began to look cloudy.
I've been scouring the net for info on fin rot, and I've come across several articles that say stress can also cause Bettas to get sick, even if the water is not dirty. Dobby has been through a lot of changes in the last two weeks. Moved from his previous owner's home to mine (different water?), moved from the 2 gallon vase to a 1/2 gallon jar for maybe a week w/only AquaSafe, then into the 1 gallon jar with plastic plants & heater for a few days, and then Monday, live plants & pagoda (both of which he loves, he's been so much more active and alert since I put them in).
Regarding Nitrite & Ammonia: I want to make sure I understand this; Nitrite and Ammonia will not reach 0 levels until the tank is fully cycled? And too many water changes slow that process down? I'm not sure where Dobby's jar is in the cycle process... How does that factor into caring for fin rot?