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Betta fin rot keeps getting worse


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  • pH - 7.6
  • Nitrates - 0-5 ppm
  • Nitrite - 0 ppm
  • Ammonia - 0 ppm
  • Water Temperature - 77 F
  • Hardness - I don't know
  • KH/Buffer - I don't know

I use an API test kit. 2.6 gal planted tank with zebra nerite as well.

I've been struggling to help my betta heal from fin rot for the past couple months, and it's getting really bad. I first noticed it at the end of August. I started by trying twice weekly water changes (once every week or week and a half was my norm). Then I tried E.M. Erythromycin and finally a combo of E.M. Erythromycin and Rid-Ich.

He has some other problems, and I don't know if they are related. His right gill plate sticks out. He was like that when I got him. He also has some lumps on his sides that I noticed maybe a month before I noticed the fin problems.

Looking at the pictures now, does he look too skinny? I feed him once a day, rotating through mini pellets, flakes, and frozen mysis.

First picture is from the beginning of September. Second is from a week ago, and the others are from today.

I'm new to fishkeeping, so I don't really know what I'm doing. Please let me know if there is any other information I can give that might be helpful. Any advice is greatly appreciated.


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He's definitely in rough shape, if Erythromycin didn't work, it could possibly be a parasitic infection, I would bet that the fin rot is a secondary infection caused by it, did he come from a big chain store? Mine had a parasitic worm infection for months before I noticed anything.  expel-p worked for me, or paracleanse could help. Aquarium salt would be another option.

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To me, the best "med" for fin rot is extremely clean water, with some salt. I would recommend a 50% waterchange everyday. You can add back in the salt daily that was lost due to the waterchanges. I think a TBSP per 3 gallons would be a good start. Being your tank is 2.6, you can just start at one tablespoon for the tank. If you do a 50% waterchange, add 1/2 TBSP of salt back in each waterchange.

Make sure to temperature match the new water to the tank water.

Edited by quikv6
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Thank you for the replies, everyone!

On 10/28/2022 at 12:51 PM, Joey1991 said:

did he come from a big chain store?

He came from a local pet store.


On 10/28/2022 at 5:37 PM, BAT said:

What temp is the water?

The water is 77°F.

Edited by foggyk
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First off, welcome to the community.

I'm sorry you're struggling with your lovely little Betta buddy.

Besides the advice colu offered with the medicated food and adding aquarium salt I would add in a piece of an Indian almond leaf to your tank. The tannins are helpful all around.

@xXInkedPhoenixXmakes almond leaf 'tea" by steeping/boiling them and uses that to keep tannins in the water during water changes. And is currently helping a Betta recover from severe fin rot. Excuse the tag friend but your rescue makes you a celebrity, Betta restoration shaman. 😊

  • Haha 1
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