NIPPER

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20gall~gal

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Every article I read says the Head and Taillight is a 'peaceful' community fish. He's nipped the tails off 2 of my fish and chases them around, any ideas?
 

atmmachine816

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What size tank do you have and how many do you have. Also what fish live with him. I have some with angels, guppies, and rasboras and they don't nip them.

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atmmachine said:
What size tank do you have and how many do you have.  Also what fish live with him.   I have some with angels, guppies, and rasboras and they don't nip them.

Welcome to Fishlore
As my name implies, 20 gallons. 

I have all community fish. He nipped the bottom tail fin off a silver tipped tetra and nibbled the male guppy's tail a bit.  He was removed today to a seperate tank from which he came, with a betta. I'll see if that works. Now the male guppy won't stop following and what appears to be picking at the bottom of my new platy and the glass fish I have is totally mesmerized and infatuated with my cory. Just follows him around with lovesick interest, watching him for hours LOL!
 

Butterfly

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Those are schooling fish and frequently when kept alone can be quite nippy. You need at least three but more is better.
carol
 
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Butterfly said:
Those are schooling fish and frequently when kept alone can be quite nippy. You need at least three but more is better.
carol
We have a lack of 'experts' to help the public around here!

If I get 3 of a kind that already nip, will they take over the tank and become the tank bullies?
 

Butterfly

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I would be very surprised if they did bother the other fish but they will chase each other around and be really interesting to watch Schooling fish hang out with other fish of the same shape and size to feel safe, they present a bigger entity to a predator and thus aren't bothered as much in a large school. It's purely instince to protect themselves in this way. One alone is going to feel stressed and on guard all the time. Maybe the nipping of one alone is just a "I'll strike first' impulse
Hope that helped
Carol
 
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Thanks Carol! I'm not sure now if the guppy is male or female, it's really pretty with a small fan tail and pretty colorful/spotted body but I can't tell about the fin on the bottom, triangular or elongated...

Next batch, I'll get some more guppies I guess!
 
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Well, good news and bad news....Good is the guppy is a male and he's not nipping, he's impregnating or trying to, a fish twice to 3x his size. I took the time to watch the dance and the equipment a bit better. Bad news, no one told him she comes from the wrong side of the tracks LOL! We bought 3 females (guppies) for him and he won't give them the time of day! The nipper we did have, head and tailight is now in the betta tank and it doesn't appear that there is any nipping going on in either tank now.
 

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Glad to hear things have worked out. Yes Mr. Guppy doesn't care as long as he thinks its female but he will notice the Guppy females sooner or later and probably sooner
Carol
 
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Butterfly said:
Glad to hear things have worked out. Yes Mr. Guppy doesn't care as long as he thinks its female but he will notice the Guppy females sooner or later and probably sooner
Carol
Sigh....he STILL is trying to impregnate Platy. Won't give the guppy females, who follow him around, the time of day.......I hope he doesn't stress her out by hounding her.
 

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The Head and Tail Light shouldn't be in a tank with a Betta. The Betta will make an even better target for a lone tetra, with his long flowing fins, than the other fish did. Bettas and tetras are not considered compatible because the tetras will soon leave Mr. Betta tailless.

Tetras are shoaling fish and so they need to be kept in groups of 6 or more. Otherwise, you will have nipping problems. If you get your H&T Light some friends to play with, I be he'd be a much more peaceful tankmate. But he can NOT be left with the Betta.
 
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0morrokh said:
The Head and Tail Light shouldn't be in a tank with a Betta.  The Betta will make an even better target for a lone tetra, with his long flowing fins, than the other fish did.  Bettas and tetras are not considered compatible because the tetras will soon leave Mr. Betta tailless.

Tetras are shoaling fish and so they need to be kept in groups of 6 or more.  Otherwise, you will have nipping problems.  If you get your H&T Light some friends to play with, I be he'd be a much more peaceful tankmate.  But he can NOT be left with the Betta.
He's doing GREAT with the bettas, yes, it's a divided tank with two bettas that have been together over a year. He's been in there for a few weeks and no one is bothering anyone else. Previously, before the 20 gallon tank, before the betta tank, the H/T was in a tank with a betta and Red Serpae Tetra for about 8 months and no one bothered anyone else.

In my 20 gallon, I have a silver tip tetra and the red serpae tetra and the are doing fine and no one is nipping anymore. Problem solved but thanks for your info!   
 

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Well, I still wouldn't recommend leaving him in with the Betta. I would hate to see you wake up one morning and find your Betta finless. However, even if you think the Betta and tetra will be ok together, the tetra will not be happy alone. Tetras are shoaling species so they need the company of several others of their species. Otherwise they will be timid, unhappy, and stressed. This is because in the wild their defence mechanism is to live in large groups. This goes for the Silvertip and the Serpae as well...they should be kept in shoals for their own benefit. This will also stop the nipping.
 

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There have been several betta owners on the Betta board who have had trouble with the Tetras nipping the fins of their betta and eventually this WILL lead to infected fins and bacterial fin rot and can lead to death for the betta if not treated.

Also Tetras of all kinds are schooling fish and need to be kept in groups of 6 or more to avoid aggressive behavior. Your tetra is going to exhibit this type of behavior even more than usual because he is not in his normal living style. He is a bully and will continue to be one only you will not notice until the fins of the other fish are too short to be repaired without a lot of help and isolation.

Nipped fins are no joke and bettas have no defense as they do not see tetras as threats so they generally will simply let them do it. It is really sad that you insist in keeping these fish together.

Rose
 
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0morrokh said:
Well, I still wouldn't recommend leaving him in with the Betta.  I would hate to see you wake up one morning and find your Betta finless.   However, even if you think the Betta and tetra will be ok together, the tetra will not be happy alone.  Tetras are shoaling species so they need the company of several others of their species.  Otherwise they will be timid, unhappy, and stressed.  This is because in the wild their defence mechanism is to live in large groups.  This goes for the Silvertip and the Serpae as well...they should be kept in shoals for their own benefit.  This will also stop the nipping.
There is no more nipping. It stopped when the tetra was put back from whence he came, paling with the betta as he has for the past many months!
 

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chickadee said:
There have been several betta owners on the Betta board who have had trouble with the Tetras nipping the fins of their betta and eventually this WILL lead to infected fins and bacterial fin rot and can lead to death for the betta if not treated. 

Also Tetras of all kinds are schooling fish and need to be kept in groups of 6 or more to avoid aggressive behavior.  Your tetra is going to exhibit this type of behavior even more than usual because he is not in his normal living style.  He is a bully and will continue to be one only you will not notice until the fins of the other fish are too short to be repaired without a lot of help and isolation.

Nipped fins are no joke and bettas have no defense as they do not see tetras as threats so they generally will simply let them do it.  It is really sad that you insist in keeping these fish together.

Rose
If it ain't broke, don't fix it. I'm leaving this forum because of you, Chickadee! You think you are right on EVERY thing printed and said and that is IT! You locked the salt topic because you had your say and said it was OFF TOPIC? Get a clue woman, you have NO idea what Off Topic is, that was about salt but you said what YOU had to say and locked it. You ruined this forum for me right then and there!

So before this gets pulled I hope at least some others see it! I am a moderator on another forum and have been for years, OT is not related to the topic in the posting and most times moderators don't bother with it unless it's EXTREMELY OT!! You'll drive people away with your self righteous attitude! Even your website picture is scowling - GRRRR! Such an unhappy person!

My tetra is fine, why are you trying to make me do what YOU say when he's been living peacefully WITH the betta for well over 8 months? Get a life!! I'm outta here!!!
 

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Take2 all we can do is give advice from our own experiences or from articles we have read. Our members always have the option to follow that advice or not but as Moderators we are obligated to try to give the best advice we can. If you don't like that advice then don't take it, it's just that simple.
No your post won't be pulled even though it has nothing to do with the thread as it started but we WILL communicate with each other with respect.
Carol
 

0morrokh

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Yes let's please do try to show a little respect for others. Rose has a lot of experience with Bettas and she knows people who have had problems with Bettas and tetras--and she knows that treating a Betta with finrot is no fun. So, wouldn't it be worse for her to say nothing? She is trying to help prevent the Betta from possible injury and I certainly don't see the need to blow up about that...

20gall~gal -- if you choose to leave them together that is your choice. But we're making the recommendation to move him for your own good. I myself have made mistakes in the past which led to finrot, and I would hate to see you end up with a nipped up Betta, having to spend your money on expensive medications and all your time trying to make him better. So, please at least consider what we are recommending, removing the tetra. And, like I mentioned before the tetra is probably lonely for a few friends, even if he does seem ok right now.
I hope you don't feel like I'm picking on you, but I am like Carol said giving advise based on experience, and it is your choice whether you want to take it or not.
 

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i'm with rose, omorrokh and butterfly on this one!!
i've read too many times about tetras getting nippy as they get frightened on their own without the protection of other tetras.
and before i get any comeback on being a hypocrite....i well aware i have one neon tetra on his own, but you'll also see there are reasons.....he was given to me as a survivor from my sis where the rest had died off and she didnt want fish anymore, so didnt buy more to rebuild the school. however i cant justify getting more tetras to join him with my ammonia problem as thats cruel. but i WILL get some more when the ammonia is sorted. i will get more cardinals too when that tank's ammonia is down. in the mean time i am keeping a close eye on any nipping. i have to find a balance between risk of nipping and risk of rising ammonia further with more fish.
anyway, i think this forum generally has a great bunch of people on it who are always willing to help and lend their experience. they arent pushy and will give their opinion and respect your decisions. they always give advice to HELP you and your fish. no one is rude, agressive or threatening. treat others as you wish to be treated. keep up the good work! 
 

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:  Very strange  Take2,  one post and it has to be to yell!  I have found these about friendly, helpful, and even with folks that choose not to take the advice, patient.   
    I hope what is going on in your life looks up, and you can find some positave way to share your love of fish with others.  We can always learn something. Have a great day!

                                                                                                           

From the Frozen North  -10F this morning!
 
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