Help Betta Fins Went From Being Smooth To Ragged In ~30 Minutes

ShimmeryLuna

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Sick fish template thread:
Tank
What is the water volume of the tank?
20L/5.2g

How long has the tank been running?
Since ~November 2018

Does it have a filter?
Yes, HOB

Does it have a heater?
Yes

What is the water temperature?
25C - 26C (Fluctuates based on room temperature)

What is the entire stocking of this tank? (Please list all fish and inverts.)
1 Betta

Maintenance
How often do you change the water?
30 - 40% water change on Sundays

What do you use to treat your water?
Seachem Prime + Seachem Stability + API Stresscoat (read below)

Do you vacuum the substrate or just the water?
Substrate is always vacuumed

*Parameters - Very Important
Did you cycle your tank before adding fish?
Yes, the cycle was finished prior to adding fish

What do you use to test the water?
API Master Test Kit

What are your parameters? We need to know the exact numbers, not just “fine” or “safe”.
Ammonia
: 0ppm
Nitrite: 0ppm
Nitrate: 10-15ppm
pH: 7.8

Feeding
How often do you feed your fish?
Once a day, in the morning

How much do you feed your fish?
A flake the size of a pinky nail every day aside from Wednesdays where 2 small bloodworms are fed, and on Sunday it is fast day

What brand of food do you feed your fish?
Omega One Betta Buffet Flakes

Do you feed frozen or freeze-dried foods?
Frozen bloodworms that are thawed

Illness & Symptoms
How long have you had this fish?
Since Jan 2019

How long ago did you first notice these symptoms?
11pm last night

In a few words, can you explain the symptoms?
Fins went from being whole to ragged in ~30 mins

Have you started any treatment for the illness?
Dosed Stress Coat before I went to bed and then did a small water change this morning (~10 - 15%)

Was your fish physically ill or injured upon purchase?
No, looked very healthy and passed all the recommended checks of a store Betta prior to purchase

How has its behavior and appearance changed, if at all?
Not at all, is still a very ravenous eater and is very alert to his surroundings (if I swivel in my desk chair that's roughly 0.5m away he'll dart to the front of the tank)


Explain your emergency situation in detail. (Please give a clear explanation of what is going on, include details from the beginning of the illness leading up to now)
My Betta has always had issues with tail biting and having not-whole fins. All my decorations pass the pantyhose test, and I have fine netting over the tank intake. The outflow of the filter has the baffler that came with it on, but the current is still a little strong directly under where the water flows into the tank.

My Betta sometimes flares at the back wall of the tank (and has had fin blowouts in the past), so when I leave the house I keep the tank light off and just let ambient light from the room light up the tank. When I'm in my room he's usually always paying attention to me so it's not an issue.

Last night I was playing with him (letting him chase my finger on the wall of the tank) at around 10:30pm whilst in downtime between video games, then at 11:00pm I got ready to go to bed. When I checked on my Betta his caudal fin was suddenly super ragged. His anal and dorsal fins were and still are fine. Obviously, that's pretty panicky to me but it was super late, so I dosed with API Stress Coat, and went to bed. This morning I did a 15% water change.

He's had absolutely no behaviour changes every time his fins get damaged, he's a very happy little boy.

I'm not sure that it's fin rot, because such a massive chunk was missing so suddenly. There's no discolouration near the edges of the tears, and the red spots on him are due to his breed (he's an orange dalmatian). He's never shown any signs of other illness (pineconing, white spots, velvet etc).

I plan to do 20% water changes every second day until his fins recover a bit. I've always had trouble keeping nitrates down in my tank, any advice on that (aside from "do more water changes")?

Images
Roughly 5 days ago
IMG_20190711_080138.jpg


Today (sorry about quality, I can get more if needed)
IMG_20190717_075302.jpg
 

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fjh

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Unfortunately this looks like classic tail-biting to me. You usually see this on the bettas with super long fins that drag (half-moons come to mind) but the theory is they bite to get rid of the excess weight and make it easier to swim.
Obviously you want to make sure it heals nicely without infection, but past that the best way to prevent further tail-biting is to add stuff to the tank to keep your betta interested throughout the day.
I personally have never dealt with this, so I hope someone with more experience can chime in!
 

Repolie

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It looks like he's been fin biting. There are several reasons as to why they do it such as relieving weight off himself, boredom, stress, or genetics.

When they start to tail bite you want to keep them distracted from doing it such as introducing new decorations to examine, temporarily remove him and rotate the decorations around for a new environment to explore, or introducing some shirmps for him to be stimulated with. You want to try and keep him distracted from doing it.

Keep the water clean to prevent any infections and his fins should heal up. Indian Almond Leaves and Stressguard are optional additives for their therapeutic and antiseptic purposes which promotes the healing process.
 

DevinHyams

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My boy, Dog, (dumbo halfmoon, red and white) looked amazing. 1 day later, buddy has half his tail left... **** idiot ate himself. He lives in a very stimulating tank, my only guess is stress or the need to swim faster because I added a few tetras and he swims everywhere 24/7, seems very happy. I used aquarium salt, stress coat, and betta fix (at different times not all at once). Any comments/suggestions?
 
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ShimmeryLuna

ShimmeryLuna

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Hey guys, thanks for your help! Figured I would post an update, now that his fins are looking better. He really is a handsome boy .
IMG_20190805_162747.jpg
 

DevinHyams

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My betta grew it back and then he finally remembered that he doesn’t like it long the other day and ate the whole thing again. Lookin like a red work rag. I think he was just procrastinating
 

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