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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I have had an ongoing problem for several months not with my VT male, Marlin. I have posted several threads and tried several solutions to no avail. I keep him in 2.5 gallon tank at 78F with a grated top. The water gets changed 2-3 times a week: 100% once a week, 50% the other times.

His tail started off frayed then heals pretty well (you can see a see-through tail starting to rebuild) but then in a week he'll be right back at square one. At first I thought it was water conditions so I have been using Melafix and API stress coat. Then I thought it was decor, but he ONLY has a silk plant (and a heater) in his tank at the moment. I think originally he may have ripped a fin on a plastic plant I had, but I don't know why it's not healing after I have taken it out.

I am really at a loss. I didn't think tail biting caused fins to become frayed (I thought it only took whole chunks out). Could this be the problem? If so, I don't know why he'd be biting, because he seems happy (eats, builds bubble nests, etc). Sometimes the fins look red (as they do in the picture, but most of the time they do not)

What should I do? Should I use AQ salt? Should I keep using Melafix and stress coat? Could pH or water hardness be the cause?

ANY help is appreciated, thank you.
 

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First the Melafix is advised not to be used for a Betta, it is said that the tea tree oil can coat their labrynith organ & cause death. Second the picture is too blurry to clearly see the damaged fins well but from what I can see there doesn't appear to be anything to worry about. I can't see any fin rot & it doesn't look like tail biting. Personally I have come to the conclusion with my long finned guys that they're fins will never be perfect so unless I see something like fin rot I let them be. Hard water can cause some fin curling. If you can post a clearer pic, one not so close up we might be able to better see what's going on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi,

Sorry, I'm having a little trouble getting a better picture. All I have is my phone and the quality isn't good at all. All I can say is that there is no black coloring as seen in fin rot, it just looks very frayed. There isn't just one tear, there are several of them across the rear fin, and only on the rear fin.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
He does seem to flare a lot, that's just his nature. But would that really cause his rear fin to shred? There are no other fish nearby.
 

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I'm no expert, but I've read that tearing is common with betta when they flare. The caudal seems to be the most effected, or at least that's what I've been seeing on posts and on other sources. Maybe someone with experience with it will chime in.
 

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Bettas with long flowy fins usually bite or when they flare excessively, tear or rip them. This usually happens with HM, DeT, SDeT, VT, and especially DTs. Warm clean water will heal those fins in no time! :)
 

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I can't tell anything from the picture, but....

Fin rot - look for edges that are dark, discolored or "smudged."

Tail biting - look for U-shaped chunks missing, with no discoloration.

Fin tearing/ripping - look for splits, as it cut with scissors, with no discoloration.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Perhaps, but I can't see where he would see his reflection, maybe the side of his tank? He's in my room which I spent a lot of time in, he flares at me a lot.
 

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Hmm. It might just be that he's not used to you... How long have you had him? If it isn't from flaring (can't tell because of the blurry picture) then the only thing I can think of if it doesn't have discoloration, that he's biting them. Either way, he'll be fine. If he's biting them then maybe putting him in a different sized tank would work, either larger or smaller. If it's from flaring, there isn't much you can do but hope he'll get used to whatever he's flaring at and chill a little.
 
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