How To Get Rid of Fin Rot

By Subodh / January 18, 2011

There are various types of fish that have long beautiful fins including those such as betas, lion fish, and angel fish. They are popular for aquarium owners to have because of their nice looks but unfortunately, over time, problems may occur with these fins that add so much to their look. Fin rot, which shouldn’t be mistaken for fin loss, is a disease that is usually caused by gram-negative rod bacteria. The results of fin rot include the blackening and tattering of the fins and in some cases, the fins may even become bloody. When a fish is not treated for this condition they can lose all of the fins thus causing the death of the fish.

Facts of Fin Loss

The fins of many of these decorative fish are soft and fragile. This is the reason behind the first signs of fin loss being the splitting of the fins. At this stage, the fin loss is easier to repair.

Decor: The decor of the tank may be too sharp for the fish. Rocks, driftwood and other such things can snag the fins and split them.

Compatibility: Certain fish do not get along and fairy fish and fin-nipping ones are examples. If you catch a fish nipping at the other one, keep the fish in separate tanks.

Cleanliness: Fish can heal very quickly when the water is simply kept clean. They don’t necessarily need any medication.

Facts of Fin Rot

Fin rot can be caused by the toxins in the water from the normal excretions of the fish. In fact, when the water isn’t cleaned, the toxicity levels can be raised dangerously high within hours. There are signs to look for with fin rot including the loss of fins or blood on the fins. If you suspect fin rot, there are some things to check for.

Water check: Check the water for high ammonia or nitrite levels before starting treatment. You can purchase a test kit for this purpose.

Overcrowding: Don’t have the water tank overcrowded. It causes extra stress on the fish and it can cause normally peaceful fish to act out and nip.

Altering pH: There may be fluctuations in the pH in the water and the pH may be wrong for the fish but you shouldn’t try to change it but clean the water more often instead.

Treatments of Fin Rot

There are various treatments including changing the water. For more severe fin rot there are medications such as anti-bacterial substances. Mardel’s Maracyn-Two is one of the most recommended treatments as is Kenacyn. These are in the form of tablets. For more natural medicines, aquarium salts can relieve stress and help to heal the fish. Avoid medicines that contain Melaleuca such as Melafix or Bettafix. Only use these once you notice that the fins are falling off anymore.