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Old 04-01-2004, 11:28 AM   #1
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Do tail fins grow back?

Hey everyone, well I showed off that Purple Tang the other day and he has caused me a slight headache. My Mandarin likes to share the same cave as the Tang, who doesn't bother other fish so long as they keep their distance. This is the problem, this morning I notice that the tail fin of my mandarin is not just bitten, but gone. Bones picked clean is all that remains of the tail. Is this going to be terminal or can it regenerate? Thanks everyone.
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Old 04-01-2004, 11:36 AM   #2
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The wound will heal provided it does not get infected. As long as the bone structure of the tail was not damaged to much as well the fin will grow back. It's only if the fine bones that support the fin are damaged that it may not grow back properly.

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Old 04-01-2004, 11:38 AM   #3
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I believe there is a point where tails will not grow back. I take info from a rainbow trout at the indianapolis zoo who's tail was bitten off. When asked the zoo told me that he was rescued and it will not grow back but it had adapted and will live somewhat of a normal life. I cannot judge in your case but I would say there is hope of survival and a chance at regeneration depending on how bad it really it. My primary concern, however, would be insuring the tang does no further damage.

R-
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Old 04-01-2004, 11:39 AM   #4
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Allow me to introduce you to Lucky...



Obviously it's not terminal, however it is a clear sign that there is a dispute in your tank. Something is picking at your tang and if it is allowed to continue to pick on your tang that can indeed lead to serious problems.
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Old 04-01-2004, 12:00 PM   #5
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My cleaner shrimp are going to work on the "nub" I hope they don't further irritate the problem.
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Old 04-01-2004, 10:52 PM   #6
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Lucky...

Was he always that way...or did he lose his tail at some point?

It is funny because I have a yellow tail in my tank that lost one eye in some sort of violent confrontation with Convict Damsel back in Dec, 1996. It looked like the contents of his head were coming out, but it healed over. He obviously cannot see on that side, but it hasn't bothered him too much. His name's not Lucky, though...it's Prince.

Obviously tough little guys.
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Old 04-01-2004, 11:08 PM   #7
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He's 8 yrs old then? Congrats!
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Old 04-02-2004, 01:53 AM   #8
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More than 8...

No, no... it was 1996 when he was injured. I've had him since 1993. He's 11.

Here he is...it is really easy to get a good close up on his blind side!

And another picture of his "friend". (with friends like that, who need enemies?) Actually, the b&w guy is almost as old...I think he's 10.

So let that be a lesson to everyone. Be careful what fish you select to test out your tank! They could be with you for a while.[/quote]
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Old 04-02-2004, 01:57 AM   #9
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try that again..

Ok..I'm getting the hang of this photo thing...
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Old 04-02-2004, 02:19 AM   #10
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Man, that's tough watching and not knowing quite what to do... Like most everyone else I'd say that it's really hard to say whether or not it will grow back and that the major concern right now should be further damage and infections... I sure hope he makes it... I'd keep a close eye on everyone's behavior and try to figure out if the tang actually did it... If he did you might want to seperate them permanently or come up with another hiding spot for them... Also, if it looks like he's going to keep on getting bullied while healing you will need to qt him till he's healed up a little better. shrimp, fish, and all sorts of wildlife will take advantage of a sick or injured animal and they could kill him or just stress him out til he dies... don't want to sound so grim but that's nature... keep a close eye on things and keep us updated...
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