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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everybody,I'm new here. I got my daughter this beta fish Monday and today I noticed his gills were black so I went online to try to find out if it was normal, and sadly it isn't. Can someone tell me if this is "ammonia burn" and by looking at the pictures if it would be deadly or if it can be treated and how to treat it? Thanks in advance!


425 Posts
Okay, so firstly can you fill out this form:
How many gallons is your tank?
Does it have a filter?
Does it have a heater?
What temperature is your tank?
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Does your Betta have tank mates? What kind?

What food brand do you use?
Do you feed flakes or pellets?
How often do you feed your Betta? How much?

Before your Betta became ill how often did you perform a water change?
What percentage of water did you change?
Do you vacuum the substrate or just dip out water?
What additives do you use?

Water Parameters:
What are your water parameters? Please give exact numbers. If tested by pet store please get exact numbers. "Fine" or "Safe" won't help us help you.

Hardness (GH):
Alkalinity (KH):

Symptoms and Treatment:
When did you first notice the symptoms?
How has your Betta’s appearance changed?
How has your Betta’s behavior changed?
Is your Betta still eating?
Have you started treating your Betta? If so, how?
Does your Betta have any history of being ill?
How long have you owned your Betta? Was he or she a rescue?


And secondly he looks okay to me, it could be the overall color of the pictures, but it looks like that is just his beard, if you hold a mirror up in front of him he will most likely flare and most male bettas have black beards.

Like this picture shows the gills:

And this would be while flaring. From the looks of it though he is okay, and if you are worried about ammonia then I would do water changes, and invest in some seachem prime, it is available at some petsmarts, and all petlands, and a few other places.

1,219 Posts
Nice fish to both of you!

I think Calvin means the black bruise like markings. I think they are ammonia burns, fill out the form so we can help treat it, but I'd add an clean Oak leaf, so that you can get some tannins in there to make him feel more cozy.
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