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Old 07-18-2011, 10:39 PM   #1 
Pataflafla
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Any Ways to Prevent Tail Biting?

Ratchet has taken up tail biting in the last day. He only slightly mangled his tail earlier today, but when I went to check on him just a few minutes ago, it was definitely worse and there was a slight tear in the middle of his anal fin.

Is there any way to prevent this habit or am I going to be stuck doing treatments with him?

I've tried to reduce his stress as much as possible by keeping the lights off and adding a dosage of aquarium salt to help him heal up. I'm thinking about moving Yorick to the third section of the tank and switching Frog back to the middle if she doesn't get too stressed either.

Is Ratchet maybe a fish that needs a single tank or is it maybe just stress from too much light last night?

He's never had this problem before. There's no visible fin rot that I can see either. Would scrubbing out his tank completely to have a fresh start maybe discourage this?
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Old 07-18-2011, 10:45 PM   #2 
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Housing
What size is your tank? 10 gal divided twice
What temperature is your tank? Steady 80*F
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? 1 male and 1 female betta. The male is in the section closest to him but hasn't been a problem before.

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish? 6 Topfin Color Enhancing Betta pellets; 1 meal of Topfin Freeze-dried bloodworms a week
How often do you feed your betta fish? Twice daily with fasting on friday

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change? Once a week
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change? As close to 100% as I can get
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change? Usually only Tetra Water Safe conditioner


Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed? Tail is a little mangled and getting worse and there is a slight tear in the middle of his anal fin.
How has your betta fish's behavior changed? Hides a little more as of this morning.
When did you start noticing the symptoms? This morning.
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how? 1tsp/gal of aquarium salt and keeping the lights off.
Does your fish have any history of being ill? Not recently. Only minor bouts of ick.
How old is your fish (approximately)? I would say less than 1-2 years. He was very small when I got him from Walmart.
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:42 PM   #3 
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i think they just grow out of it my bamboo betta grew out of it
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Old 07-18-2011, 11:46 PM   #4 
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I'm hoping this is a one time deal. He had such nice fins before today. I liked that they had so much web in between instead of looking so spikey.

I'm hoping that a completey tank scrub will get rid of any bad bacteria and maybe discourage him from biting off any more. I may switch his plants around too so he can have a little more swimming room.
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Old 07-19-2011, 01:09 PM   #5 
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If he doesn't quit, you may want to try switching it so your female is next to him. Maybe he will be so busy trying to impress her he'll stop. But I'm also not sure how good it is to leave a female next to a male for long. I've noticed that when I leave one of my girls in the divided tank with Anderson for more than a week, the girl gets kind of droopy and hangs around at the back of the tank a lot. Not to mention she gets eggy as heck. :/ Not sure if this is just my girls on hormones or every female next to a male does this.
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Old 07-19-2011, 05:28 PM   #6 
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I switch Frog and Yorick, so now the female is next to Ratchet. I kept the female cupped for the night because she' only in my tank to gain weight and has been acting a little strange due to stress, and recently parasites. She was unfortunately in the tank for a while when she was acting funny so now the entire tank gets parasite meds.

It looks like Ratchet is stopping the tail biting, but I'm gonna keep a very close eye on him. The tank is still getting thoroughly cleaned tomorrow just because it's in need of it. the gravel especially with 3 bouts of ick and now parasites.

Thanks for all your help.
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Old 07-19-2011, 06:16 PM   #7 
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If he does end up doing it, if you put a clean ping pong ball in it may entertain him
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Old 07-19-2011, 10:37 PM   #8 
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I'll try toys too. I might have a few floating pieces of plastic lying around that I can use.
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:12 AM   #9 
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Good luck!
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Old 07-20-2011, 12:15 AM   #10 
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I washed off a plastic bottle cap and put it in the tank. Ratchet sized it up for a minute or two before deciding that he can't possibly push it or anything other than try to fight it. Yorick just looks at it and Frog chases it to stare and gawk a it. Overall, Frog is the only one that enjoys the color yellow.

Tried a white cap with Ratchet too, but he still wasn't having any. Time to collect caps and see which color he likes best.
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