Fin Rot Not Going Away... Please Help!! Help

  1. nickibee Initiate Member

    Hello all, Bilbo is my second betta fish so I am aware of things like tank cycling and water temp for bettas. I got Bilbo last summer and a couple of months in introduced a mystery snail for a tank mate... things were going great but eventually I noticed parts of Bilbo's tail were shredding and/or falling off. I moved him into a quarantine tank and with a mixture of marine salt and microbe-lift his tail started growing back. Out of fear this would happen again I kept him in his smaller tank until his tail was fully restored.

    Two weeks ago I decided to return him to his larger tank (this time minus Smeagol the snail... I believe his waste loaded the aquarium with too much bacteria which led to the fin rot in the first place). He seemed happier and healthier than he's ever been... super playful, always checking up on what I'm doing when I walk into the room, finally eating normally. Then just now I got home from work and realized his tail had completely shredded/fallen off again. I am distraught. What am I doing wrong?

    I've attached a picture to show the extent of the damage in just one day. When I left this morning he was fine.

    Please help me, I feel like I am letting the little guy down!

    Attached Files:

  2. AZrodeo92 Well Known Member Member

    Can I see the tank?

    Can anything snag his fins and tear at them?
  3. Thunder_o_b Fishlore VIP Member

    Greetings and welcome to Fishlore :)

    We need more information to be of help to you and Bilbo.

    Please provide the following:

    1. Ph reading.

    2. Ammonia reading.

    3. Nitrite reading.

    4. Nitrate reading.

    5. Size of aquarium.

    6. Maintenance. Water change, gravel vacuuming.

    7. Food fed. Amount and frequency.

    8. What other fish are in the main aquarium?

    There is an issue in the main aquarium if Bilbo has the stated issue that ends in the QT and returns when Bilbo is returned to the main aquarium. Bettas at times will bite their own fins if they are upset about something.

    But this is not as common as some will tell you. Off the top of my head I would say there is something amiss with the water quality, and ammonia would be my first suspect.
    Unless you have neons in there with him.

    What ever you do do not use a product called Melafix. It is deadly to labyrinth fish.
  4. nickibee Initiate Member

    Bilbo's tank is a 3-gallon filtered fluval with a heater set at 78 degrees. Since it's really cold here his tank has been closer to 75-76 most days. Two weeks ago, his water tested at 0,0,5 but I have not been able to test it again because I'm out of test strips (more are on their way from Amazon). His tank right now is pretty bare... it used to be planted but I decided to wait a bit before reintroducing plants to make sure his fin rot didn't return. He does have one plastic plant in there that could be damaging his tail, but it was in there with him before and he didn't seem to have any problems with it. I also watch him all the time and it doesn't seem like he ever gets near the end of the leaves... he's always resting under them or on the fabric leaves above.

    I do 50% water changes every two weeks and use the gravel vacuum once a month. Like I said earlier, he used to have a mystery snail in there with him but now it is just him. I feed him three omega one pellets a day, let him fast on Saturdays, and sometimes give him shrimp as a treat.

    Attached Files:

  5. nickibee Initiate Member

    Right now I am treating him with daily water changes and marine salt. If that doesn't work in the next week or two I'll start using microbe-lift. I've never used melafix... heard it damages their respiratory organs.
  6. AZrodeo92 Well Known Member Member

    That tank is very bare. He might be bored and nipping his own tail
  7. AZrodeo92 Well Known Member Member

    I don't trust salt in the tank, but that's for you to decide
  8. nickibee Initiate Member

    Oh really why? When I first had this issue several sites told me it was the best thing to get rid of fin rot before using a chemical or medication. I only use it short-term but would love your opinion
  9. AZrodeo92 Well Known Member Member

    I kept it in for too long and when the damages was done I couldn't reverse it and lost 2 boys (almost 3)
  10. Thunder_o_b Fishlore VIP Member

    Salt is at best questionable. The best treatment is pristine water. Keep an eye on him and see if he is biting himself. Try to get some real plants like frog bit or java fern.
  11. AZrodeo92 Well Known Member Member

    Anubus is also a great plant for bettas.
  12. nickibee Initiate Member

    His tank was planted with anubus before and he loved it so I will definitely be adding some in the near future. I will wait for the test strips to come in to see if the ammonia levels are too high but until then I'll keep doing daily water changes and hold off on the salt. Thank you both for the advice! So sorry for the loss of your boys AZrodeo :(
  13. AZrodeo92 Well Known Member Member

    It was beginners mistake. I learned and now I have 9 happy and healthy boys and I couldn't be happier. I just try to share my experience