Fighter (betta) With White Lumps On Fins... Please Help!
I'm really stuck on this one!
My male fighter has lived happily for several months with no problems, but over a week ago started to develop white lumps on his fins. He doesn't have these anywhere else, although he has also turned from mainly flame red to red and green over the last couple of weeks as well. He seems a little lethargic, sometimes resting on the bottom (which rings alarm bells for me as he very rarely used to do this).
He is in a 25 litre tank, filtered, aerated and heated (27C) and lives with Tetras (Blue neon, cardinal, black neon and rummy noses), lamp eyes and a couple of tiny Ottos.
The tank has been set up and stable for about 6 months. The most recently added fish were the 2 Ottos about 6 weeks ago to clean algae from my plants.
There has only been one death in the tank in the last 3 months or so, which was a blue neon about a week ago (unknown cause, no sign of disease, so presumed old age).
We do a 30% water change every 2 - 3 weeks (heated to temperature and de-chlorinated) and the filter is cleaned (using tank water) once in between the water changes (never at the same time).
Recent water tests were near perfect (Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate) although if you feel it would help I can do another water test and provide exact figures.
I'm attaching photos... they are slightly blurry but should still show the problem better than I can describe it!
I started a course of Protozin 3 days ago, thinking it may be whitespot... but the more I look at him, the more I just don't think it looks like any whitespot I have ever seen!
Please help... I already lost my favourite fighter (unknown causes) about a week ago in another tank after having him about 8 months, would hate to lose this guy as well!
Just done a water test (liquid test kit):
I'm worried to see Nitrite, as usually this tank has perfect water results... could this be anything to do with the fact that I added dose 3 of Protozin about 2 hours ago? I could do a water change, but it would mess up the Protozin treatment, and unless I know for sure it is not whitespot, it would seem logical to complete the treatment I think?
Further details I should probably have mentioned are:
Filter: Fluval 1 with standard sponge filter
Substrate: Fine gravel
Feeding: Betta Bio Gold for the fighter + Hikari Micro Pellet for everything else (which the fighter gobbles too)
At risk of getting told off for overstocking, my stock level is:
8 Blue Neon Tetras
3 Cardinal Tetras
5 Black Neon Tetras
5 Rummy Nose Tetras
7 Lamp Eyes
2 Rainbows (possibly Gertrudae, under 1 inch long)
2 Otos (unknown type, under 1 inch long)
1 Male Siamese Fighter
The tank is a strange one... 1 metre long but only 11cm deep and 24cm tall.
This is why I chose the fish that live in it... they all took to the odd shape like "fish to water"!
It is the healthiest tank I have ever had... since cycling, I have never had to treat for disease and only remember ever losing one fish, the blue neon about a week ago! One of my rummy noses lost an eye whilst we were away for a week back in July, but recovered marvelously on its own and still lives to this day!
It doesn't look like whitespot to me. Whitespot (ick) looks like sugar sprinkled onto the fish. It looks like fungus or fin rot.
I find it odd that your tank has been set up for 6 months but you have no nitrate reading? A cycled tank will have some reading for nitrate, especially if you are doing water changes only every 2-3 weeks and the tank is overstocked. And you should have no nitrite. It's possible the medication may have harmed your beneficial bacteria and that's why you have a nitrite reading. Go ahead and do another water change and replace the carbon to remove the Protozin. You may want to think about bumping up your water changes to once a week. Cleaner water may clear up the fin rot on its own. Do you have a hospital tank that you could treat him in separately?
Hi, thanks for your reply!
I also find it odd that I have Nitrites and no Nitrates! It is a very unusual reading for that tank! It definitely wasn't like that a week ago... but I cleaned the filter since then. Is it possible that I am washing my filter media too thoroughly? I wash it in a small jug (inch of water) of tank water, squeezing it, then usually tip away the water and repeat.
Personally I think that the filter is substandard, but the tank isn't tall enough for the Fluval 2 (which I swear by for my other tanks) and I haven't been able to find a suitable alternative (has to be silent as is in bedroom).
I'm hoping the reading has come from the recent dose of Protozin, or that the delicate balance has been upset by the 3 day Protozin treatment.
I can't 'officially' add carbon to the Fluval 1 but I have some Poly stuff that I can place in the bottom of the tank, designed to remove nitrites, meds etc... I will definitely add that if I'm not continuing Protozin!
Unfortunately I don't have a hospital tank... yet. I plan to get one set up within the next few months as I have definitely got to the point where I should have one!
I have only been keeping fish a year, although was well taught by a friend for a long time before that. I am the sort of person who throws myself into something wholeheartedly and am to the point where people who have kept fish for years come to ME for advice... that said... I am by no means an expert and will gladly take advice on board!
I'm adding a closer pic... 99% sure it isn't finrot... it is just too 'tidy' if that makes sense!
Any more advice gratefuly accepted!
It looks like fungus to me, especially how it is fuzzy.
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