Many betta fish owners have been devastated to discover that the gorgeous, flowing fins on their fish are frayed or discoloured. A bacterial or fungal infection that causes a fish’s fins and tail to degenerate is called fin rot, often referred to as fin melt. When betta fish suffer from fin rot, the prognosis is generally excellent for a full recovery provided the issue is treated appropriately. Continue reading to find out how to recognise and handle betta fish fin rot.
Recognising Fin Rot
Fin rot could be indicated by darkening at the edges of your betta fish’s fins. The colouring of fin rot is either black or red. A betta with this condition may have frayed and occasionally bleeding fins. If you’re not sure why you have torn fins, check for other symptoms like discolouration. Sometimes, fin rot is not the cause. Fins that are infected may seem white and fuzzy if a fungal rot has established themselves. Your fish’s behaviour may not change due to fin rot, but this does not rule out infection.
How to Treat Fin Rot in Your Betta Fish
Although fin rot can be frightening to see, do not be alarmed! Treatment for the illness can begin right away, saving your fish from more damage. Even after fin rot has been cured, betta fish fins can regenerate. If you have seen fin rot in your betta fish, follow these procedures. Recall that time is of the importance!
1. Quarantine the affected fish.
To prevent the sick fish from infecting its tank mates, it’s a good idea to isolate it if you own many fish. Set up a quarantine tank to house your sick fish while they heal. For your betta fish to live happily, make sure the water in the quarantine tank is properly warmed and conditioned.
2. Give the tank a thorough cleaning.
Take out half of the water in the main aquarium if you have other fish that are not sick. If your betta fish is by itself or if it seems like every fish in your tank is infected, do a complete water change. Use hot water to give the tank and everything inside it, including the plants, gravel, and décor, a thorough cleaning. Before adding fresh water to replace the withdrawn water, make sure the aquarium filter is clean as well.
3. Give your fish medication as prescribed by a veterinarian.
To choose the best course of action for your betta fish, see an aquatic veterinarian or an aquarium professional. Depending on the severity of the fin rot, they might advise a straightforward cleaning and environment upgrade for your fish, or they might propose a specific prescription.
A tiny amount of aquarium salt is frequently added to the tank to cure mild occurrences of fin rot. The usual rule of thumb for betta fish is one tablespoon of aquarium salt per five to seven gallons of water, although it’s always advisable to consult an expert before doing anything. Before adding aquarium salt to the tank water, dissolve it in a different container. It can be added gradually to make the fish’s surroundings alter gradually. Keep in mind that salt is not a good long-term cure, and you shouldn’t leave it on your betta fish for more than ten days. Put table salt away from aquariums.
A catappa leaf is another option for adding to your betta fish aquarium.The native tropical environment of betta fish is home to the catappa tree. Aquarium water may get beneficial antimicrobial tannins released by it. Your betta fish might need medicine to recover if its fin rot is more severe. An antibiotic prescription can be suggested by your veterinarian.
Preventing Fin Rot
One of the best ways to make sure your betta fish doesn’t have fin rot in the future is to prevent fin tears. Take out of the tank any sharp objects or surfaces that could rip the fragile fins off of your fish. Every day, observe how your fish’s fins look. By doing this, you can rapidly detect any tears or discolouration before any rot has a chance to set in.
Regularly replace the filter in your aquarium to ensure the health of your betta fish. Verify that the tank has sufficient capacity to accommodate two gallons or more of water. Ensure that the conditions in your aquarium are suitable for your betta fish. This can be accomplished by taking a reading of the water’s temperature, testing the pH, and inspecting your aquarium filter. Your fish can become weak, susceptible, and ill from water that is too hot or cold, or from water that is too acidic. A pH of 6.5 to 8 and a temperature range of 75 to 80 degrees are ideal for betta fish.
Note from the author: It’s always a good idea to seek advice from a veterinarian or aquarium specialist if you are unclear of what temperature and pH are best for your fish.