Please Help! My relatively new goldfish fish has developed black fins and some black patches on his head. They are getting darker by the day, he seems happy, is behaving normally etc. I have done an ammonia test on the water on it was fine. Could these be natural colourings just appearing or is it something nasty?
Hi! What are you using to test your water (specific name/type of test)? Either you are performing the test incorrectly or its not good. Did you cycle the tank before adding fish? What type of goldfish/what size tank? What you are describing are classic ammonia burns. Change 50% of the water ASAP with temperature matched, properly conditioned water. Change another 50% this evening. You will need to continue to do this daily (or even 2-3x daily) until your tank is cycled. If you are not familiar with the nitrogen cycle, please check out the articles on the top of the page. Some more information will help!
Moved to Coldwater Fish
Thanks for your swift reply I used nutrafin ammonia test NH3/NH4 and the test was clear as a bell. I left the tank (63 litres) for 72 hours before adding the fish, then another 10 days before adding 3 more. The others are fine no signs of anything but the original fishes colour has darkened over the last few days. Despite the test results, after reading stuff posted on here, I decided to do a partial water change and after your reply will continue to do so and hope he improves. I am also using filter start every two days as it's new set up any more advice is welcome as I am new to this
The ammonia test is a two bottle test- make sure you are using bottle 1, shaking test tube, then bottle two & shaking the test tube again. I would double check this because even a 'zero' reading will have a yellow color- a clear result indicates there is something wrong with either the test or how you are performing it. If its a strip test, then there is something wrong with it & I would highly suggest investing in an API freshwater master test kit- you need to test ammonia, nitrite, nitrate & ph.
Ok, 63l is only about 16gallons. Exactly how many goldfish and what type of goldfish are in this tank? A 16g tank is only suitable for a single fancy goldfish and no more. Fancies need a minimum of 20g for the first fish 10-20g for each additional fish. Single-tailed goldfish (comets, commons, shubunkins, etc) require much larger amounts of water (50-100g per fish)because they can grow to be 12-18inches & are realistically pond fish.
Basically, whatever type of goldies you have, you are very overstocked and this is contributing factor to your ammonia issues. Goldies are VERY messy fish that create LOTS of waste (ammonia). Ammonia is toxic to fish. Please check out the articles on the top of this on the 'nitrogen cycle' as well as read the link below. You are now starting a fish-in cycle & it will be important for you to stay on top of your daily tests & water changes to keep everybody healthy through it. Please ask any questions you may have!
http://www.auqariumadvice.com/articles/articles/124/2/- I-just-learned-about-cycling-but-I-already-have-fish- What-now/Page2.html
This is the tank I bought, and was told I could have up to 5 goldfish, but decided that was too many and opted for 4. The first is a small comet and the others similar I'm sure ,they are also small but look far more robust with wider bodies and show no signs of burns?http://www.petsathome.com/shop/fish-box-60cm-tank-by-interpet-(available-in-
I bought the other three fish from a proper aquatics centre and the first from above
I can't see what the capacity is in the description only dimensions and I suck at Mathematics
Should I take out goldie number 1, put him in a separate tank?
63litres is 63litres. Your link didnt work but if you post the measurements (LxWxH), I can give the exact capacity of the tank less gravel or other decor (which will reduce a tanks capacity).
I am very sorry your store gave you such poor, awful advice!!! In the future, always research the fish you are considering first prior to purchase to be sure you are able to house & care for them adequately & appropriately. Four comets/commons in a 16g is simply 4 too many. A single fancy (double tail variety) would be okay. I would seriously consider rehoming them to a pond in the near future, fishless cycling your tank and then stocking it with appropriate fish. You are going to be fighting a constant uphill ammonia battle. Just some things to think about. Please do not hesitate to ask any questions!!!
I think this also helps as well to give you a 'visual' idea of your fish's growth potential. This scale is a bit on the smaller side (up to 12inches) rather than 18inches but its reasonably accurate. Please take a look at the link below.
It just looked it's H37x W60 xD32 cm. My father in law has a pond would it be kinder to move some on. If so how many? I want to keep a cold water aquarium but only have space for this tank. What is a good balance and variety I can safely care for in this capacity ?
Just read the link , that's potentially a big fish in a small environment and that's never good! Especially x 4,
I honestly would put them all in the pond. Based on these measurements, your tank is @70l or 18g. Its a nice size for a single fancy goldfish. If you want to do another type of coldwater fish, I believe danios may work but dont quote me on this (I only do goldfish). Some types of killifish may be ok as well as white clouds (once again, do not quote me here). I honestly would go with a single fancy goldfish. Start researching the various types & see what may interest you & I can offer you further advice. Dont hesitate to ask questions!!!
In case you are still looking, white cloud are a good cold water fish. They do well, at least first year with goldfish.
It's weird... I had my two goldfish in a flower pot that held maybe 2.5 gallons of water at best. The only thing I had in this "bowl" were some black beach cobble stones and water and nothing else, no filter, no air, and no plants. I changed the water about once a year out of guilt, the fish seemed very happy with their green algae environment. I could only see them when they came to the surface for food when I called out "Hello Fishies!"
Fast forward three years... I finally put them in a 5 gallon tank with all the fixings (Filter, air, plants and gravel) and now they start developing this black stuff on their fins... I am going to install a larger filter and add ammonia stuff to the filter bags.
I've gotten goldfish that have developed black on them after I got them home. Classic ammonia burn. Where you got it from had bad water.
Ammonia burn takes a while to show up. The damage was done before you brought him home. Keep the water clean and it should slowly go away.
I know this orginal question is from 2 years ago but i stumbled upon it and had to leave an answer for possible future viewers. The brown/black spots on the goldfish body is actually the skin healing from excess ammonia levels. It's possible the previous environment had high ammonia levels. Regardless, that's why the water is testing normal now. Dark patches are a sign of healing, esp around the gill area.
Great note! ^ We have zero ammonia in our tank and have one patchy goldfish. He acts fine though and our other fish are 100% good.