I've had my fish, Leopold, for a little over a month, and we've been through 4 water changes together.
This last time, however, I think Leo ran into something or got caught in the net funny when I was trying to scoop him up, and hurt his fin. :(
His poor little left ventral fin now is sort of... broken. He can still move it in and out away from/close into his body, but sometimes it just sort of seems to get caught fluttering out by his side, sort of perpendicular to his body. It definitely didn't do this before.
Is there anything I can do for him? I feel so bad.
Furthermore, any tips on removing fish from their tanks for cleaning in a more gentle and/or successful way? He HATES being taken out of his tank.
Could you post a pic? Have you tried taking him out of the water using the cup method? You take a cup ( like the kind he came in ) and put it in the water near him so it will gently draw him in the cup. I hope this helps.
i wouldn't worry about it too much. my delta tail has NO use of his ventrils. at all. they are like... stuck. against his body. they used to just flutter there, but now they stick there.
i used to use the cups that they come in, but recently a friend gave me two of those Betta View "tanks", and i use them. i just trick them to come to the top of the water, or wait till they come up to breath, then i scoop them in.
The second picture shows the most extreme angle his fin might take (the dark fin sticking out towards the bottom of the photo). It seems like he can control it until it gets caught in a mild current (either created by him or the small filter in the tank) while he has his ventrals out from his body, and has trouble pulling it back in.
I've turned off the filter for now (he usually doesn't mind it, but it makes his fin go crazy), hoping it might just be a weird sprain that can heal with rest.
Turning the filter off might help, but in the long run, if it is "broken" there isn't much that can be done. If he is moving around and active, eating normally and seems healthy, I honestly wouldn't worry about it. I've had so many little "scares" with my last betta, Lunch, it made me feel sick sometimes. But in the end, there's just nothing that can be done. Thankfully, Betta are survivors. If they do have a shortcoming, they make up for it, so he will be fine as long as he is eating.
If you want to help him heal, and hopefully he does, keep him in a calm part of the house and keep the lights out so he is less active for a few days. Make sure he is eating a lot and if he has too many obstacles in his tank, remove a few. But if after a few days nothing has changed, it's probably better to let him deal with the disability and with time, neither of you will even notice it.
As for scooping him up, I find using a clear cup works best, they can't see it coming so don't swim away. Dip the cup in, wait for the fish to swim into the cup then gently scoop him up. It's easy and harmless. I never use nets.. they worry me so much!
honestly, i don't even know what the ventrils do. :I i just know that Ichi gets along just fine without use of his. i worried at first, but he's going on a year(or two. just one year with me) old, and never had use of his.