had a 10 year old goldfish but can't keep any new ones alive! Please help!
I'm not sure where to post on the forum about goldfish so I thought I'd start here. I had a plain common goldfish (the kind that are often used as feeder fish) that I kept in a 30 gallon aquarium. He lived for 10 1/2 years and I was really sad when he died a few months ago. :( He died of an illness that caused him to have red streaks running through his tail fins. I did treat him with 2 rounds of the maricyn that the pet shop recommended to me, but unfortunately it didn't help. After he died, I cleaned out the aquarium really well with hot water, scrubbed the walls and removed all algae, etc. I bought new gravel and a new filter since the other gravel and filter were so old. I set up the tank with the new gravel and filter, used water conditioner, and let the aquarium run for 2 weeks before I went to get fish to put in it. During that time, I also put a nice sized handful of gravel from my well established tropical tank in the new tank to help with the cycling process. After 2 weeks, I went and got 2 small common goldfish. They were really healthy for about a week and then suddenly became lethargic and died. During that time, I had my water checked several times and there were never any traces of amonia, nitrates, or nitrites. After the fish died, I let the tank run another week and went and got a small oranda goldfish. I've had him for about 3 weeks. He started out healthy and was swimming all over, eating well, etc. Now, he's on the bottom of the tank and won't eat. He has red streaks in his tail fins just like my 10 year old fish did. I'm treating him for it, but it isn't loooking too promising. I am getting very frustrated but I don't want to give up yet. I love goldfish and want another one. If this little oranda dies, what should I do next?
-is the water contaminated so a new fish would get sick and I should dump it all out and start completely over, cycling process and all?
-Are my new fish dying because the tank was still contaminated from my old guy who died?
-before I got new fish should I have cleaned out the tank with something more than hot water?
Any advice would be very much appreciated. I really want to get another gold fish I can have for many years but I can't seem to get any to survive. Please help!
Also, the water where I live is pretty hard.
Please read the cycling thread in my signature.
By the time you added the used gravel to the new gravel, the bacteria had already died because you never added fish for two weeks. Bacteria needs a source of ammonia to live be it live fish or ammonia from a bottle.
Also, the red streaks running through the fins of your goldfish are the result of high ammonia levels. maracyn would have had no effect.
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"There is no right way to do the wrong thing." - KingFisher "Only bad things happen fast in this hobby" - Cliff
I agree...you need to cycle fully and the red streaks are a sign of ammonia poisioning...medications can't help with that...
55 g Goldfish Tank - 5 Fancies, 2 Dojos
25 g Tropical Tank - Celestial Pearl Danio/Mixed
Letting a tank "run" isn't enough to prepare it for a fish. As Lady Hobbs said, you need a source of ammonia on a daily basis in order to "cycle" the tank. As for "no traces of..." - in a cycled tank, you are supposed to have a reading for nitrates but not for the others (ammonia, nitrites).
Cycling a tank allows beneficial bacteria to build up in the filter which will break down the ammonia produced by fish - with no bacteria in an uncycled tank, the fish's ammonia builds up in the water and can kill them.
46 gal fw tank with black skirt tetras, neon tetras, spotted cory catfish, cherry barbs, guppies, snails & 4 amano shrimp - plastic & live plants
5 gal QT with green corys & 2 guppies
Did you do any serious cleaning in the tank before your first fish died?
It sounds like ammonia poisoning, as the others have said, I'm just wondering what you did (or didn't do) that caused it. If you had the fish for 10 years you were obviously doing something right...
I would do a large water change and add some stability or cycle-starter (bacteria in a bottle) to help get things under control. Or some media from the filter on your tropical tank (gravel actually doesn't contain that much bacteria).
What kind of maintenance were you doing on the tank before? How often and how much on water changes? Gravel vacs? Did you change food brand/quantity?
same story as me
Unfortunately I learned the hard way that a 30 gallon tank is not big enough for one goldfish (mine weight about two pounda and grew to be 11 inches long and 9 inches in girth
Mine finally died probably of septicemia which caused kidney failure That is what my vet told me
Iwas told by many fish enthusiasts that a fish that size needed at least a 150 gallon tank or a small pond
I guess partial water changes evey two weeks and siphoning the gravel each month (I had an underground filter) wasn't enough
I still feel guilty about that fish now I know better.
I agree. Living for 10 1/2 years in a 30 gallon sounds sad to me and I think he should find different fish that are made for his tank size........after he cycles the tank, of course.
You live and learn by your mistakes, as you have. You don't keep making them.
First of all, I'm a she, not a he. Second of all, everywhere I read on the Internet, it says that godlfish need 2-3 gallons of water per inch of fish. For a 7 inch fish, that does not equal a 150 gallon aquarium or a pond. I had my fish for 10 years and he was very healthy. I siphoned the gravel every 3 weeks and did 20% water changes like clock work. I came here asking for advice and instead, I find one of the mods on this site insinuating that I am choosing to repeat mistakes on purpose, guilting me, trying to make me ashamed about the life I provided for my fish, and offering no real advice about anything other than to judgementally point out everything she thinks I did wrong. I thought this would be a friendly community...boy was I wrong. Other than gpb and MCools, I found everyone to be downright rude. If you are going to have an aquarium forum, then perhaps you should attempt to help a person out when they have questions instead of acting so superior and pretending that you are so far above everyone else. That is not any way for a mod to act, Lady Hobbs. I will look elsewhere for people who can help me not belittle me. I will not be back.
You said you would not be back, so maybe you're reading this or maybe not.
This is not passing any judgement, but I'm just wondering about the accuracy of your test kit. You said your ammonia, nitrites and nitrates were zero, yet the symptoms your fish displayed are those of ammonia poisoning. The reason for this could be that either the ammonia rose to toxic levels after you tested, or your test kit was off. I am wondering if you tested more than once.
It normally takes a tank four to eight weeks to finish cycling. So if your test kit read you a series of zeros, chances are the cycling hadn't started yet.
What kind of filter did you get to replace the old one? Was it an undergravel, a hang-on-back power filter, or a cannister?
During the cycling process, especially with goldies, you need to change the water and vacuum the gravel much more frequently, because it takes time for the beneficial bacteria to build up enough to handle it on its own.
Seachem's Stability is a bacteria booster that can help with that, and also seeding your filter with established media. Even so, you would need to continue doing the water changes and gravel vacs at least two or three times a week until the tank has cycled, and you would need to keep up the testing of your water so you know what stages your cycle is in as the beneficial bacteria colony continues to grow and multiply.
You would also need to increase the amount of water you change from 20% to almost 50%.
I am also wondering how a 10-year-old goldie which had been healthy all that time suddenly developed ammonia poisoning? My guess would be it grew too large for the tank and was expelling more ammonia than your established BB colony could handle.
If you are reading this, hope it helps.
20 gal. high: planted; 1 zebra danio, 6 glofish, several snails, 2 (visible) RCS; AC50, Azoo air. 65 gal: planted; 4 rosy barbs, 6 glofish, 5 white cloud minnows, 3 zebra danios, 5 dojo loaches, several snails; AC110 x 2.