Goldfish problem

Discussion in 'The Front Room' started by SAS, Jan 7, 2004.

  1. SAS

    SAS Can't get enough of FH

    A few weeks ago I bought a nice new fish tank which has a filter built in, and I filled it up with the usual gravel, some plastic plants and a treasure chest (no tank would be complete without one?), tap water (with treatment stuff to strip away chemicals) and added 4 goldfishies...

    Now I've hit a problem :(. I bought them for the girlfriend to keep her entertained e.t.c and it looks like they are unwell or something...

    On top of the tank rim there is a very thin line of bubbles forming, which even after wiping away reappear within an hour or so. Not sure if this is harmful? :/ The fish are eating ok mind, but they are less active and spend most of their time near the bottom of the tank hiding behind the filter. I think it's something to do with nitrates in the water? One of the fish spends 90% of his time at the top of the tank, but the rest seem to be breathing ok (so oxygen levels ok?). The water temperature is a constant 18-20 degrees.

    Anyone looked after or have goldfish who might be able to shed light on the bubble stuff or offer some advice on what I should be doing. If these fish die my life won't be worth living :(
  2. Deadmanwalking

    Deadmanwalking Fledgling Freddie

    Have you tried replacing the water? Maybe with filtered stuff?

    And have you got enough water for each goldfish.

    *Disclaimer* This is all based on looking after a neighbours fish for 2 weeks, so if you end up killing/maiming your fish i cannot accept any blame.
  3. caLLous

    caLLous I am a FH squatter FH Subscriber

    Whatever you do they're not gonna remember it...
  4. 'Shy

    'Shy One of Freddy's beloved

    Do you have any real plants in there? If not, get some. You can get a kind of weed, I forget it's name, but it's an oxygenating plant, and also the fish can eat it.

    The bubbles on top may be due to too much of the anti chemical stuffs. You should only put in something like 1 drop per litre, if I recall correctly. Try a part water change. Scoop out a couple of jugs worth and replace with normal tap water to try and weaken the solution you have in there.

    Another thing, is, when you buy a new tank you really shouldn't introduce fish to it for at least 48 hours. Did you put the fish in straight away? You need to let the filter start it's job, get the water circulated and aerated and well adjusted to the temperature of the room before you add anything living to it.

    I used to work in an aquatics shop but was over 10 years ago so I'm a little rusty with the knowledge now, but hopefully that should help!
  5. Xavier

    Xavier Can't get enough of FH

    Canadian Pondweed aka Elodea is a good oxygenating plant for goldfish tanks. They're also pretty happy to eat it if you forget to feed them, or go away for a few days. In fact when I used to go away on trips for a week at a time I didn't need to ask anyone to feed my fish as the Elodea was more than enough to keep them going, and when I got back I'd just stick a bit more in to replenish the stock.

  6. adams901

    adams901 Part of the furniture

    I don't and never have treated the water I put into my tank. I change 2/3 of the water every 3 weeks and have no plants in, I gave up after spending £60 on plants only to watch them be destroyed in a week (those they couldn't eat were dug up and ripped into little pieces).

    I have 6 fish, (2 huge goldfish, 1 pink fish, 2 small gold fish and a grass carp), Have had them for about 9 years now and have never had any problems with them.

    Get a Sera testing kit, they are pretty good and test for everything, Nitrate, Nitrite, Phosphate, Calcium and a bunch of others.

    Best way to get oxygen into the water is to make sure there is movement on the surface.
  7. SAS

    SAS Can't get enough of FH

    Thanks for the replys. I went into a local pet shop today who tested the water and apart from the guy not knowing what a ph level of 9 meant "sorry sir I lost the manual" it turns out the water is way to alkaline (water changes might help over the days or I'll have to buy some solution to slowly increase the water ph). One old guy in the store pointed out a rock I have in the tank could be raising the PH, which is nuts as I bought it at the pet store where I got the fish, but it's out now. Anomia (spelling) levels are also a tad high so I've bought a "vacuum cleaner" to suck up the crap off the top of the gravel, only to find out I don't have an oxygen pump to run it (&X£%!"£), so another trip to the shop...

    Shy1 : The solution was probably causing the bubble effect, it seems to have gone after I've done a 1/3 water change.

    Xavier : How much would the plant be, and is it easier to look after? I guess it's like a plug and play thing? :)

    Deadmanwalking : Done that mate, got 2 filters in there, but there's crap on the bottom of the tank so this vacuum cleaner might help (fingers crossed).

    CaLLous : Mandy says :p
  8. Deadmanwalking

    Deadmanwalking Fledgling Freddie

    You called your goldfish Mandy?! :eek7:
  9. Cyfr

    Cyfr Banned

    My grandma had a plant for her fish, then they decided that it was tasty to began eating it, it was gone within two days and then they wernt hungry for the proper food. Silly fishies :(
  10. SAS

    SAS Can't get enough of FH

    Deadmanwalking lol nope :)

    Callous aka Phil used to work with my girlfriend "Mandy". My message to him was Mandy's reply to his message :).

    Fish names are "Tim, Dave, George, Bob" :/
  11. caLLous

    caLLous I am a FH squatter FH Subscriber

    Why is Mandy in speech marks, is it an alias or something? :)
  12. RandomBastard

    RandomBastard Can't get enough of FH

    Yes Mandys real name is Menace 11.
  13. Deadmanwalking

    Deadmanwalking Fledgling Freddie

    Oh i see, so we aren't talking "working" names then :/
  14. Xavier

    Xavier Can't get enough of FH

    It's not a potted plant, you just float it in the tank and it sits there merrily, oxygenating and if the fish feel so inclined, being eaten.

    Most fish shops sell it, bagged in water, just like you'd win a goldfish at the fair.

  15. Deadmanwalking

    Deadmanwalking Fledgling Freddie

    I won a goldfish like that once!

    He died on the way home :(
  16. GDW

    GDW Fledgling Freddie

    Hope Im not too late to help, but I used to work for a fish importer many moons ago and know what Im talking about (most non -specialist pet shops dont!!)

    What size is your tank?

    The most common problems people make:

    Introducing too many fish to the tank at one time - one a week is plenty for tank less than 2ft in length

    Overcrowding the tank - two goldfish is plenty for a small tank less than two foot long - remember they can grow big. Since goldfish are non tropical and live in unheated tanks, the water holds less oxygen than if it were heated. Bubbles forming at the service usually indicate underoxygenated water and as a result the fish 'gasp' at the surface, resulting in the accummulation of small bubbles along the edges of the waterline

    Overfeeding - only feed as much as you they will eat within a minute acouple of times a day

    Changing too much water at one time - only syphon off 10 - 15% of the water once per week and replace with dechlorinated tap water.

    Hope some of this helps. PM me if you need any help.

    Good Luck.
  17. Xavier

    Xavier Can't get enough of FH

    We won one too, called him fred, he was our first goldfish and outlived all the shop-bought ones we got after - about 7 years in total :eek7:

  18. Tsjiep

    Tsjiep Loyal Freddie

    I used to have a rabbit called Bob. Great pet... ate him when he was a month old... great meal.
  19. Deadmanwalking

    Deadmanwalking Fledgling Freddie

    Bloody excellent name.
  20. Ch3tan

    Ch3tan I aer teh win!!

    Mandy and Fred are both excellent names. But William, thats a strong name, almost a royal feel about it.
  21. tris-

    tris- Failed Geordie and Parmothief

    he is right about the rock, did you wash it first? did you wash all he gravel etc first? there is always a residue on the rocks and sometimes the gravel. there is also some rocks that have calcium or something in that will make the water alkaline. if there is too much amonia you can get a bag of rocks that you wash first, then put them in the bottom of the tank and it takes the amonia out. i think you change them every week.

    about the vacuum thing, some of them you dont need a pump, you get a bucket handy at your feet, shove the big end of the hoover into the gravel, suck on the tube untill the water nearly goes in your mouth then put the tube in the bucket. after a while you learn not to suck it too hard ;)
  22. Sploosh the ElfChimp

    Sploosh the ElfChimp Fledgling Freddie

    Goldfish first aid:eek:P

    Best thing you can do, is to buy an 'air stone' (small pourous piece of rock, like a pumice stone) that you attach to the end of the airline from the pump you bought for your 'vacuum cleaner'
    This will generate a stream of bubbles that impart a little in the way of oxygen themselves. more importantly, they cause water movement which increase the gaseous exchnage at the surface, thus improving water quality.
    How big are the fish, and the tank?
    The gravel on the bottom, unless you have an undergravel filter, shouldnt be very deep at all... about a 1/4 inch maybe..or else all kinds of nasty can develop in there.
    1/3 water changes weekly are good..but do allow the water you are changing with to stand for an hour to get rid of the chlorine, and to get to the same temp as the tank water.
  23. jaba

    jaba Fledgling Freddie

    bloody hell! I didnt realise goldfish were so complicated, I just thought you stuck em in a bowl of water! Might explain a lot really :(
  24. Ch3tan

    Ch3tan I aer teh win!!

    Explains why all mine died, heh. Had seven goldfish from the ages of 6 to 12.
  25. SAS

    SAS Can't get enough of FH

    Thanks for the replies, my minds resting a bit easier now.

    I'll tackle the tank today and fingers crossed in a few days it will sort itself out. Just need to do a 1/3 water change, head out for a pump and air stone, connect the vaccum, clean, then head to work and wait :/
  26. granny

    granny Fledgling Freddie

    Replace goldfish with small pieces of carrot cunningly cut to resemble fish.

    Easily replaced once a week when they start to go manky, no complicated care or attention required and added bonus of being able to do scary "eating of the goldfish" trick when friends visit.

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