Betta fish, Siamese fighting fish or Fighter fish as its called in India are really really beautiful fish. They have magnificent colors on their long flowy fins which come in so many varieties.
Whether your Betta is a half-moon, full moon, delta tail, double tail or a veil tail, taking care that their fins stay in great shape is really important. There are many things that can go wrong and lead to fin deterioration if you don’t pay much attention. Knowing the causes of fin deterioration can help you take better care of your Betta. A proper healthy Betta fish with flawless fins looks like this
Here are some causes of fin deterioration:
– Ammonia Burns
– Fin Nipping
– Fin rot
– Tail Biting
– Aquarium Decorations
Ragged ends of fins are signs of fin deterioration:
Ammonia Burns: Ammonia is one of the products of fish waste in the water. High levels of ammonia can cause the delicate ends of the Betta fins to burn. Safe levels of ammonia for any fish is 0 ppm. When ammonia levels rise, they can cause ammonia burns. High levels of ammonia can lower the immunity of any fish making them susceptible to infections etc.
Solution: Keep a check on water parameters. If possible get an Ammonia Test kit, test your water. Make sure your tank is cycled. If you notice any ragged fins cause due to ammonia, make sure you do enough water changes to keep ammonia at 0 ppm. Add dried Indian Almond leaf to the water, it helps in regrowth and keeping infections away.
Fin Nipping: If your Betta fish has tank mates like tetras (neons, cardinals etc.) there’s a possibility that these fish may nip on the Betta’s fins. It’s better to not have such fish as tank mates with a Betta. Also dried Indian Almond Leaf to help with healing.
Fin rot: Fin rot is an infection caused by bacteria. In conditions where your Betta is stressed or has lowered immunity, fin rot can affect your betta. Fin rot causes frayed, ripped fins. There maybe red/pink tips, black ends, tethered fins etc
Solution: Fin rot can be treated with or without medication. Without medication, you’d have to make sure your Betta is good quality water (water parameters in check) by doing water changes, the temperature in check, and a good diet. Again dried Indian Almond Leaf can surely help. Some aquarists add aquarium salt to the water.
Medication can include Methylene Blue baths.
Tail Biting: Betta fish can bite on their own tail when stressed or bored. This can happen if the filter has a strong current, not enough decor/hiding places etc
Solution: Setting up an aquarium which your betta would love to explore is the key. Also get a filter that doesn’t have a strong current.
Aquarium Decorations: Sharp objects, Plastic plants, etc can lead to tears in your Betta’s fins. Make sure you have silk plants that are soft or Live Plants which are better any day over artificial ones.
So if you see any fin deterioration go through all possible causes and try and fix it before there’s more damage. If you have any questions you can always ask me in the comments. And make sure you share this post!
Happy Fish keeping!