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BluewaterBoof
06-03-2015, 07:50 PM
We've had our VT betta since the beginning of March and didn't have any issues with him other than aggression towards tank mates (he's now by himself in a ten gallon).

After a while, we noticed that his fins were getting torn. His tail fin and the big one on the bottom (anal?). We attributed this to the fake plants that we initially had in the tank. Some, like the little fake tufts of grass, had very pointy/sharp edges so we took those out and he now has water sprite (very soft) and a large anubias nana plant in there. The tears healed up and everything was great for a while.

Lately, we noticed that his tail fin started to recede. It progressed until he lost about half of the original length. I did my research on fin rot and started treating accordingly (water changes and salt treatments. This has done nothing to cause the fin to grow back. I'm no longer sure this is even a case of rot as the fin is not ragged/jagged, bloody/red-tipped, nor has it receded any further towards the body. Also, none of the other fins are affected. Ive poured over many images of fin rot and this looks nothing like what ive found online. The fun looks completely normal except for the fact that it is shorter than its original length.

I keep his water impeccable, temp around 78-79, filtration is fine, we don't overfeed, and I make sure to vacuum his gravel with each WC. The water parameters are all good (0amm, 0trites, ~5-10trates). The only aspect of my water that I can't control is that the pH is around 8.2, as this is what it is from our tap. I'm not sure if it could be from the pH, though, as his fins repaired themselves without issue when they were torn from the fake plants.

He moves around so much that I can't get a pic that isn't blurry.

Anyone have any ideas as to what I'm dealing with? I was beginning to think he was attacking his own tail, but I've never witnessed him doing that and the fact that the fin's edge is so even I find it hard to believe that he's nipping at himself or tearing it somewhere in his tank.

Thanks for any input you can offer!

mommy1
06-03-2015, 08:01 PM
A bored betta will often nip his own fins. Try entertaining him with a colorful object placed just outside his tank. Change it out every few days so he has something new to explore and study. He likely won't nip his fins in front of you because he is just as interested in watching you as you are in watching him.

BluewaterBoof
06-03-2015, 08:26 PM
Thanks for the reply, Mommy!

Are you sure it's from him biting his own tail? I've seen photos of that and the tails always looked tattered and ragged. Our guy's tail is nice and smooth; it doesn't appear to have any kind of damage (other than being 50% shorter...).

Boundava
06-03-2015, 08:42 PM
Our betta hates his tail and doesn't nip from boredom, but out of frustration of his heavy tail weighing him down. Many bettas do this to themselves. If you betta swims and sinks when he stops moving-he will probably take it upon himself to trim the excess weight. I am hoping the beta in the 75 doesn't do that- maybe he will build up enough muscle to not need to trim his own tail.

Slaphppy7
06-03-2015, 08:44 PM
I've noticed our Betta's fins/tail seem shorter than they used to be, too...I've never seen him bite at them though

mommy1
06-03-2015, 08:52 PM
Of course I can't be certain since I am not there to watch your fish, but I do know it is more common than we think. I've seen fins look both ragged and smooth after a fish bites them. Keep his water very clean to help prevent fin rot and give him something to be interested in and see how it goes.

RiversGirl
06-06-2015, 10:32 PM
I find it interesting to learn that Bettas do this.