Will My Guppy Tail Grow Back? (How Long It Will Take?)

Guppies have very colorful and attractive tails and fins. They use the dorsal fin to move, and the tail fin helps them change direction. Unfortunately, the fins and tails of guppies sometimes get injured because of chasing and nipping or fin rot disease.

So, Can guppy recover their fins and tails? Will my guppy tail grow back, and how long will it take?. Let us find out.

Guppy tails do grow back, but it depends on fins or tail damage severity. Guppy will not be able to recover its fins or tail if it has lost it completely. However, your guppy will recover its fin and tail from partial injury. Provide adequate water conditions to boost recovery.

We will also discuss how to treat fin rot disease and damaged fins and tails of our guppies. So let us get into it.

About guppy fish fins

Guppies have different fins that help guppies in different ways to move:

  1. Anal fin
  2. Dorsal fin
  3. Caudal fin
  4. Pelvic fin
  5. Pectoral fin

Anal fin helps your guppies to stabilize while swimming.

The dorsal fin helps your guppies in movement and to make sudden stops or turns.

The caudal fin, also known as the tail fin, helps your guppies change their movement direction.

The pelvic fin helps your guppies go up and down through the water. Also, guppies use the pelvic fin when they have to take a sharp turn or stop quickly. 

The pectoral fins help your guppies in the same manner as the pelvic fin does. 

Do guppies tails grow back?

Guppy can regrow its tail.

However, it depends on the severity of the damage.

If your guppy has completely lost its tail or fins, it will not regrow back.

Guppy will recover its fin or tail slowly if it has gotten partially injured.

Your guppies will regrow their tail in 5-6 weeks if the cause of the damaged fin is injury.

However, if the guppy is suffering from an advanced stage of fin rot disease, it is possible that your guppy will not be able to regrow its tail fin.

Why are my guppies fins damaged?

Damaged fins and tails are something common in guppies.

Most of the time, the damage is minor, and your guppy will recover from it in a quick manner.

Some of the damages are so minor that you have to inspect them by looking closer.

Guppies damaged fins will recover on their own, and you don’t have to do anything in most cases.

The reasons behind the guppy’s damaged tails or fins are:

  1. Your guppy is fighting or getting bullied.
  2. Your guppy is suffering from injury.
  3. Your guppy is suffering from a disease. 

 Guppy is fighting or getting bullied.

Guppies are non-aggressive fish. However, improper living conditions can sometimes trigger aggression in them. 

If you have more male guppies and few female guppies in your tank, it will be a primary reason behind male guppies fighting.

Male guppies will chase each other to mate with the female guppy.

While chasing each other, they will usually injure their fins by getting nipped. 

Male guppies are territorial, and when you keep only male guppies in a tank, they become aggressive and territorial, resulting in fighting with each other.

If you have more male guppies than female guppies or only male guppies, consider adding more female guppies to your tank to reduce the aggression from your tank.

Consider adding guppies in a ratio of 2:1, two female guppies on one male guppy.

You can also keep three female guppies and one male guppy.

Adding more female guppies will not make male guppies fight each other for mating with a female guppy, and also, particular female guppies will not come under stress because of constant chasing.

When we talk about guppies fighting or getting bullied, aggressive and non-compatible tankmates should also be a matter of concern.

If you have aggressive fish like angelfish and bettas present in your guppies aquarium, the chances of nipping fins will usually increase.

Guppies will usually get bullied by aggressive fish. 

Aggressive fish will chase your guppies resulting in nipping at your guppy’s fins. 

Always look for the signs of aggression in your tank and if you find anything unusual in your guppy’s behavior, take immediate action. 

Also read: Are Guppies Aggressive?

Your guppy is suffering from injury.

Guppies are active fish species and move around a lot.

They can easily get injured by any sharp-cornered object, like aquarium ornaments with sharp edges.

Consider adding decor items to your guppy’s aquarium that doesn’t have sharp corners or edges, as guppies can injure themselves by swimming near sharp objects.

Other possible reasons are your guppy is getting bullied by other aggressive tankmates. 

Your guppies will recover from the injury in some days, and the fins and tails will grow back.

However, the primary thing here is to prevent your guppies from injury.

If you have any aquarium ornaments that have sharp corners or edges, consider moving them out from your guppy’s aquarium.

There will be bullying in an aquarium with more male guppies and other aggressive tankmates.

Bigger male guppies will try to bully small guppies; sometimes, multiple guppies will form a team and bully one particular guppy fish.

Bullying is not that severe until and unless it is consistently happening in your guppy’s aquarium.

If there is constant bullying in your guppy’s aquarium, you should take some action and prevent bullying.

You can prevent bullying by moving aggressive tankmates out of your guppies tank, introducing more female guppies, and reducing the number of male guppies.

Your guppy is suffering from a disease. 

Fin rot disease is common in guppies and other fish species.

The primary reason for fin rot disease is poor water quality and stress.

Guppy fish in stress for a long time will be weak and lose their immunity, prone to various diseases and infections.

Fin rot disease is one of them.

Guppies can come under stress because of the following reasons:

  1. Inadequate water condition
  2. Unstable water parameters
  3. Improper feeding 
  4. Overcrowded tank
  5. Aggressive tankmates
  6. The improper ratio of male guppies and female guppies
  7. Illness

Fin rot is also usually caused by vibrio, Aeromonas, or pseudomonas bacteria. However, the primary reason for fin rot remains stress and inadequate living conditions. 

Fin rot disease is easy to prevent than cure.

If you do not treat the fin rot disease in its early stages, it can be life-threatening for your guppy fish.

It is essential to detect the disease earlier to treat fin rot at an early stage.

These are symptoms that indicate fin rot in guppies:

  1. The edges of your guppies fin will get discolored.
  2. The tails or fins of your guppy will start fraying.
  3. The fins of your guppy will start getting darker.

When the infection starts spreading, guppies’ fins will start to fall off, leaving a torn edge.

Not treating fin rot disease will make your guppy suffer in a critical way.

Fin rot disease will weaken the immune system of your guppy, and over time your guppy will get prone to other various diseases and infections.

If not treated, fin rot disease will start spreading, and your guppy will suffer lethargy, body rot, loss of appetite, and major discoloration.

Also, fin rot disease can spread in your guppy’s aquarium and harm other fishes.

However, fin rot disease is treatable only when you detect it at its early stages.

And the good thing is it takes time to reach the advanced stage, and you can treat it easily in the early stages.

Now that we know how important it is to treat fin rot disease at its early stages let us know how to treat fin rot disease. 

Also read: Are My Guppies Stressed?

How can I treat the rotted fins of my guppy?

Fin rot disease can be life-threatening for your guppies if not detected early stages.

Fin rot disease can also be contagious, making other fishes present in your guppy tank vulnerable to fin rot disease.

So, it is crucial to detect and run the treatment as soon as possible.

These are the steps to run treatment for fin rot disease:

  1. Isolate your sick guppy in a separate tank.
  2. Make sure to provide adequate water conditions and perform a water change.
  3. Run the antibiotics to treat fin rot disease.

Isolate the sick guppy

Moving the sick guppy to a separate tank is essential when we don’t know the cause behind the injured fin.

If the cause behind rotted fins is a parasitic infection, it can be contagious.

So, isolating your sick guppy in a separate tank is essential to keep the remaining fish safe.

However, ensure that the isolation tank has the same water conditions and parameters as the main tank. 

Provide adequate water condition 

Providing your sick guppy with an adequate water conditions is essential to ensure a faster recovery.

Ensure performing a daily water change of at least 75%.

Performing daily water changes will eliminate harmful bacteria from your guppy’s aquarium. Also, it will help improve water oxygenation.

Make sure to treat the water using the water conditioner to dechlorinate it. 

We use the API water conditioner as it will help eliminate chlorine, chloramine, ammonia, nitrite, and heavy metals from the water.

You can buy this product on amazon: API TAP WATER CONDITIONER.

You should use a gravel siphon to siphon out any solid debris from the substrate. 

Ensure keeping a regular check on ammonia and nitrite levels in your guppies tank.

We recommend using the API freshwater master test kit as it will show you accurate results and help test the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH level of your corydoras tank water.

You can buy it from amazon: API FRESHWATER MASTER TEST KIT. 

The ammonia and nitrite level should be at 0ppm.

Run the antibiotics

Antibiotics are essential when the case is severe, and its cause is a bacterial infection.

However, make sure to consult the veterinarian, as not all antibiotics are suitable for all fish.

A veterinarian will help you prescribe the right antibiotics for your sick guppy.

Consulting a veterinarian will help you know the duration of the treatment and what change of treatment is needed according to the response of the sick guppy.

How can I treat the damaged fin of my guppy?

The treatment completely depends on the cause behind the damaged fin of your guppy.

There can be various possible reasons behind your guppy’s damaged fin:

  1. Your guppy hurt by bumping into an aquarium decor with sharp edges or corners.
  2. Your guppy is getting bullied.
  3. Other tankmates are chasing and attacking your guppy fish.
  4. There is a presence of aggressive and big fish in your guppy’s aquarium.
  5. Your guppy is not getting a regular and adequate food supply.

If the injury is not severe and caused by sharp or hard decor items in your guppies tank, there is nothing to worry about, as your guppy fish will recover by itself in a day or two.

You can consider removing some of the aquarium decors with sharp edges or corners. 

However, make sure of these things if the reason behind the damaged fin is not aquarium decor and is any of the above reasons:

  1. Maintain the ratio of male guppies and female guppies.
  2. Consider removing the aggressive tankmate from your guppy’s aquarium.
  3. Provide plenty of hiding places for your guppies.
  4. Avoid adding bigger fish to your guppy’s aquarium.
  5. Provide your guppies regular supply of food.

Maintain the ratio of male guppies and female guppies.

When there are more male guppies and few female guppies in your guppies aquarium, male guppies will compete to mate with female guppies.

Also, female guppies will come under stress and show aggression because of constant chasing by the male guppies.

Maintaining the ratio of male guppies and female guppies is essential to prevent aggression in male guppies.

Maintain the ratio of 1:2, one male guppy and two female guppies.

You can also keep the male guppies and female guppies in a ratio of 1:3, one male guppy and three female guppies.

Remove aggressive tankmate from your guppies’ aquarium.

Guppies are non-aggressive fish species.

Aggressive tankmates can make your guppy come under stress and get prone to various infections and diseases.

Aggressive tankmates like angelfish will constantly chase your guppy fish, resulting in nipping at your guppy’s fins.

Avoid keeping aggressive tankmates in your guppy’s aquarium to keep your guppy safe.

Consider adding compatible tankmates like neon tetras, gourami, mollies, shrimps, and plates.

Also read: Can Guppy Fish Live With Angelfish?

Provide plenty of hiding places for your guppies.

Add lots of live aquatic plants to your guppies’ aquarium to create hiding spots for your guppies.

When bullying or chasing is the cause of damaged fins, hiding places become essential to provide to your guppies.

Injured guppy fish will require a hiding place to hide from bullying fish and recover their fins.

There are many options available when it comes to adding hiding places in your guppy fish tank, of which rock caves are good.

You can buy rock caves at amazon: Stackable Aquarium Decoration Rock Caves.

Also read: Do Guppies Need Hiding Places?

Avoid adding bigger fish to your guppies’ aquarium.

It is common for bigger fish to chase and try to eat smaller fish.

The possibility of this happening increases when the size difference is significant.

Bigger fish will constantly bully and hunt down smaller fish.

Bigger fish will look at smaller fish as a tasty treat and try to eat them.

So, never add bigger fish to your guppy’s aquarium.

You can add similar size, compatible, peaceful fish such as molly and platies to your guppies aquarium. 

Also read: Can Guppy Fish Live With Goldfish?

Provide your guppies regular supply of food

When guppies don’t get food regularly, they can show aggressive behavior, chasing each other.

However, guppies will not hunt down each other, but chasing will result in guppies nipping fins and tails off each other.

Nipping fins and tails of each other will result in injuries, and your guppies will get vulnerable to various infections and parasites.

Also, make sure to provide your guppies variety of good quality nutritional food rather than feeding only flake food or pellets.?

Guppy FoodServing QuantityNo of Times
Veggie pelletsOne pinch at a time2-3 times a day
BloodwormsOne pinch at a time1-2 times a week
Tubifex WormsOne pinch at a time1 time a week
Mosquito larvae10-15 pieces2-3 times a week
Brine shrimpOne pinch at a time1-2 times a week
This table shows the dietary requirements of guppy fish.

We recommend feeding your guppy fish with Hikari Micro Pellets as it is a high-quality food that provides all the nutritional value required by guppy fish.

You can buy this product at amazon: Hikari Micro Pellets.

Also read: Best Food For Guppy Fish.

Can guppies survive without a tail?

Guppies can survive without a tail as it uses their dorsal fins to move forward.

However, the guppy will find trouble swimming without a tail as the guppy uses their tail fin to change directions.

If your guppy struggles to maintain its buoyancy and is swimming erratically without a fin tail, then euthanizing your sick guppy will be the best option for you to perform.


Guppy will not be able to recover its fin or tail if it has lost it completely.

Your guppy will regrow its fin or tail if it has been partially injured.

It takes up to 5-6 weeks for your guppies to recover their fin or tail.

An adequate water condition helps boost the recovery process.

Ensure to detect and treat the fin rot disease at its early stages, as fin rot disease in advanced stages can result in a life-threatening situation for your guppies.

Reference: NCBI, ResearchGate, ResearchGate, Wikipedia, ERSS

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