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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone! I am a first time Betta owner and my Betta, Bean, has been biting his tail like crazy.
I've attached pictures of him before, during, and today; and pictures of his tanks. He was in a 2.5 gallon before, when he did not have this problem. I moved him into a 5 gallon on 10/14 and noticed symptoms on 10/22. All plants in his tank are real, not plastic. I have put spongy material over the filter's intake valves since day 1, so his tail can't have been sucked into them. I keep up on water changes and testing. I doubt that it's fin rot, because every single time I noticed pieces missing, it was a sudden event. I pay close attention to his fins each day and it is always a... wake up in the morning and 1/3 of his caudal fin is gone... kind of thing. Today, I was gone for 3-4 hours for school and when I came back it was the worse loss yet. A lot of his caudal fin is gone along with some of his dorsal fin and a hole in his anal fin. I feel terrible for my little guy and I really need some advice on how to get him to stop this. I have ordered almond leaves to hopefully calm him down if he's doing it because of stress, but they won't be here for two days. I was considering moving him to his old 2.5 gallon to see if it's something I can't figure out with his air stone or filter.


Housing:
How many gallons is your tank? 5 gallons
Does it have a filter? Yes, Tetra Whisper
Does it have a heater? Yes
What temperature is your tank? 77-84
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration? Yes
Does your Betta have tank mates? What kind? No

Food:
What food brand do you use? Aqueon pellets, Omega One blood worms
Do you feed flakes or pellets? Only pellets
Freeze-dried? Freeze dried blood worms
How often do you feed your Betta? How much? Twice a day, two pellets each feeding. Some days blood worm in morning, night, or midday

Maintenance:
Before your Betta became ill how often did you perform a water change? I do water changes every week
What percentage of water did you change? 25%
Do you vacuum the substrate or just dip out water? Vacuum substrate
What additives do you use? API stresscoat and/or Top fin betta water conditioner

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.

I tested my water on 10/22 and the levels were...
Ammonia: 0-0.25 ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 0ppm
pH: 7.8
Hardness (GH): unknown
Alkalinity (KH): unknown

Symptoms and Treatment:
When did you first notice the symptoms? I noticed them on 10/22
How has your Betta’s appearance changed? At first the fins looked like they had 3 large chunks missing. They got better for the next couple of days, then in the morning there were more missing. Some mornings more are missing. They were healing well for the past 2-3 days, until this morning there was another chunk missing. When I got back from school only 3-4 hours later, there were HUGE chunks missing , to the point where the rays stick out about a centimeter past the tissue between them. None of this has been slow; it has always been a situation where they are looking better, then I wake up the next day and there are huge chunks missing. I don't think this is fin rot.
How has your Betta’s behavior changed? The day before this started, he was looking at his silhouette reflected by his background and flaring for long periods of time. The next day I removed the background and added a large plant. Otherwise, he is still active and curious. He has been flaring at me more than usual, though.
Is your Betta still eating? Yes, very well.
Have you started treating your Betta? If so, how? I added Bettafix from 10/22 to 10/28
Does your Betta have any history of being ill? Unknown. Only had him since 10/6.
How long have you owned your Betta? Was he or she a rescue? Since 10/6; taken from teacher, unknown where she got him. Likely the pet store.


Thank you for any replies, I know this was long! :(
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
This should be 0, ammonia is toxic to fish.
When this test was done, I marked that it was 0-0.25 because the color didn't match either the 0 or the 0.25, so I didn't want to definitely say it was either. The week before, it was 0 for sure.
Would that cause this sort of reaction? I'll test the water again and see what it is right now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
This should be 0, ammonia is toxic to fish.
I tested the water again and the results were...
pH: 7.8
Nitrate, Nitrate: 0ppm
Ammonia: 0ppm

It's hard to differentiate between 0 and 0.25 ppm and I still think it looks like it's in between those values, but closer to 0. I do 25% water changes every week and he has a filter, I am careful about overfeeding and removing uneaten food, and I am careful about what substances might be getting into his tank through handling and added items, so I don't even know how I could have excessive ammonia if it really is 0.25 :(
 
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