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Regarding Fins...

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This is kind of a weird question, but it all started with my little white oranda. It's face is red and the rest of it is white. One day I noticed that the tips of its tail fins were red. At first I didn't know if I had a water quality problem or if that was just coloration. Months later, it's still there and I know it's coloration. My question is, if there is a water quality problem and the fish's fins are affected aside from ammonia burns, will there ever be a time when I can't tell the difference? I don't know if I'm wording this right.

Do fins ever turn colors because of water/health problems? Or will it always have red streaks and be ragged or something?

Hopefully you guys know what I'm talking about. = P

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Guest Shiari

ammonia burns are black. Red streaking in the fins and having tattered fins are signs of water problems or internal infections. But I do understand your dilema about coloring.

My koi, Yuki, came home with a developing ulcer and an orangy red, almost sunset-ish appearance to his fins, and this still has yet to go away. It makes me wonder whether he's going to stay his nice silver gray or turn into a giant brown chagoi. But it would still be nice to have an explanation of his weird fins, just as with yours.

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Irritation from ammonia is red, it's only after healing begins that the marks turn black.

Generally if your fish is showing physical signs of something being off balance, you'll know. If you know your fish, it's pretty obvious when something isn't right. I had someone come to my house and try to tell me the black marks on the tail of a calico nacreous fantail were ammonia burns. Of course they weren't, but I guess he'd never seen a fish with black in its tail! Though water conditions can affect the coloration of a fish (black stays better in cooler water, etc.), genes have to have a part in it and fish won't permanately change color solely because of water conditions.

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