Help Betta Fin Rot

  1. sandyshores Initiate Member

    Hello,
    I have a male double tail betta. He is in a new 5 gal tank. I think he has fin rot :(
    I tested my water and the nitrates are high (over 40 ppm!) because my tap water's nitrates are high. Currently there is a pothos plant in the tank to hopefully reduce nitrates. I'm going to head to Petco to get some plants for the tank today as well. The tank is not cycled yet, but I use prime with tap water for ammonia (also high in tap water! +1ppm) and put safe start in the tank.

    What can I do for my poor betta? He is eating well and is swimming around but his fins are bad. Will they grow back? Is there anything at Petco I can get to help him?
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Fanatic Well Known Member Member

    Number one factor, is clean water.
    Change 50% of your water, and continue to do so.

    @CindiL
     

  3. sandyshores Initiate Member

    How often should I do the 50% water change? Also do you know how long it'll be until he's better?
     
  4. jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    Welcome to FishLore!

    You're in a bit f a bind. Normally, I would recommend daily 50% water changes to keep his water as pristine as possible. But since you have more than 1ppm of ammonia in your tap water, water changes will not get your ammonia levels down.

    I would say you have 3 options at this point.
    1) Buy bottled water and do water changes with that (using Prime) until you cycle the tank

    2) Get a bottle of Tetra SafeStart and add that to the tank. SafeStart is basically a bottle of the bacteria that cycles a tank. SafeStart needs to be used in a precise way (though not difficult), but instaed of me writting it all out now, if you choose to use it, just post and myself or another member will walk you thru it

    3) Use Prime and Stabilty to get the tank cycled. Stability is similar to SafeStart, but used in a different manner.

    Note, you could mix option #1 with either option #2 or option #3. You basically need to decide on a strategy and then we can help you fine tune that strategy.

    Best of luck!
     

  5. sandyshores Initiate Member

    I'm currently using Prime and I added safe start earlier (I just poured the whole bottle in). Is that correct in how I did it? How long until it takes effect?
    I just checked water and the pic is the results and nitrite was zero. I also got better pictures of his fins.
    What type of bottled water can I use?
    I forgot to add, I added two anubias plants, an anubias petite, three moss balls, and have a stem of pothos in the tank.
     

    Attached Files:

  6. jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    When using SafeStart you must wait a minimum of 24 hours after using Prime (or any other water conditioner). Using SafeStart less than 24 hours after a water conditioner was used, can cause the SafeStart to fail.

    Then you add an entire, well shaken, appropriate sized bottle of SafeStart to the tank. Then do nothing but lightly feed your fish for the next 14 days. On day 14 test your water and if all worked correctly, you'll have a cycled tank.
     
  7. sandyshores Initiate Member

    Ahh okay, so I:
    1. Water change
    2. Wait 24 hrs
    3. Add Safe Start
    4. Don't do a water change for 14 days?

    Does this sound right, or do I continue to water change through the 14 days?
     

  8. jdhef Moderator Moderator Member

    You have it correct, and nope, no water changes for 14 days after adding the SafeStart,
     
  9. sandyshores Initiate Member

    Thank you very much for all of your help! I will report back!