my fish is staying at the bottom of the tank

5 years ago #1

my fish (actualy my moms fish) is not moving and staying at the bottom of our tank. he doesnt eat and is not trying when we put food down to him. we have tried talking and singing to him, nothing is working. he is a gold fish in a tank with three other fish, and two others have died recently. he seems to have a bit of fin rot and maybe septicemia. they are all fairly old. we have a 30 gallon tank and have experince with goldfish, but nothing is working for him. one of the two that just died had a similer problem, and we could not help him. we would apreshiate ANY sort of help. we just want to save him. if there is anything else needed, just ask. thanks so much.

Posted on Cold Water Fish
dkpate avatar
5 years ago #2
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What other fish are in there?
How long has the tank been set up?
How often do you do partial water changes?
What are your water parameters? (Ammonia, nitrite and nitrate)
How old is the goldfish?

southern creature avatar
5 years ago #3
southern creature
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High there and welcome,

This sound like it could be a water quality issue, ammonia poisioning in particular. That many goldfish in a 30 gallon tank can work while they are small, but much more space is neede as they grow.

Goldfish are big waste producers (poopers), I guess you've noticed this!! Waste will create ammonia and this is very toxic to fish.

If you can test for ammonia it would be great if you could post the levels on here. Your nitrite and nitrate levels would be good too. If you do not have a test kit, your local fish shop will probably do the tests for you.

It is often said that goldfish only live 7-8 years, this is only true because the best advice is NOT always given. 1 goldfish should have atleast a 15-20 gallon tank, then add 10 gallons for each fish after that.
With this guide (and good care) your goldfish should live around 25years (48 years being the longest on record).

Without knowing your water parameters, I'd still say it's likely to be ammonia poisioning (this is very common). To deal with this do a 30% water change ASAP and change 20% every day till you are sure the ammonia registers zero.
Even if it is not ammonia these water changes can not hurt, however do not over clean your gravel (only clean 1/3-1/2) when you change water as you need to keep the beneficial bacteria in there to digest the waste/ammonia. Also do not over clean your filter.

While on the topic of beneficial bacteria and OVER cleaning. Did you do a big clean recently? If so you may have aleady killed off too much beneficial bacteria. This too will cause an ammonia "spike" as there will not enough bacteria to digest waste. Again this should be controlled with frequent water changes until the bacteria recolonise.

Please try and post some test results.

3 years ago #4
Betta fish

My fish is (betta) stayign at the bottom of the tank even when I cleaned it. What could be wrong with it? it curves it's body and it struggles to swim up and it swims vertically and then it just gives up and sinks to the bottom. please help

melissavee avatar
3 years ago #5
Platinum Member
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Cold water may be causing your fish to stay still at the bottom of its tank. Bettas prefer temps of 78-80 degrees, their species live in puddles in tropical climates. Your pet store may sell small heaters designed for betta keeping at a reasonable price. I would also add a touch of aquarium salt- 1 tsp per 5 gallons of water, bettas like that. If you have just finished cleaning his bowl, he may just be a little stressed. Keep him in a dark place or wrap a dark towel around his tank if you feel that may be it. If he continues having problems swimming, it may be a swim bladder problem, also typical to bettas. Dont feed him tonight if that is the case. I hope he comes out of it!

2 years ago #6
same thing
2 years ago #7

So I just got a fish at the fair and I put it in a nice tank and every thing but it is swimming at the bottom of the tank and I looked if it had some sort of health problem but it looks healthy so and it doesn't seem to want to eat at all, what is your opinion on the situation?

1 year ago #8

Same thing won a fish at the fair and it died 23 min after i had it transfered to a new tank, just bought some fish right now cuz my tank is empty

Charanpreet avatar
1 year ago #9
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Hey Lizzy, the fish probably died, because of Ammonia poisoning. Don't bother buying other fish until you finish cycling the tank.

Read this

2 weeks ago #10
Fish Problems

I think that that is a ammonia problem. I had that problem too. When did you get the fish? How big is your tank? Have you cleaned it out? Have you replaced the filter? Did you put conditioner in it, and how long did you waitfor it to settle?

KK F. avatar
2 weeks ago #11
Blogs: 22
Forum: 6,925
Votes: 328

Hi Fish Problems,

Thank you for your concern, but I suspect this problem has already been resolved, since the original question was posted 5 years ago. For future reference, you can check the date of the thread by looking in the upper right hand corner of the post.


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