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Posts posted by Niffarious

  1. Excuse my first post, I need more coffee. I was thinking blue-green algae. They will go for diatoms, but there is kind of a catch. They need a lot of food, and generally there isn't enough to be had in an aquarium - part of why so many people lack success with them. However, if they are kept very well fed you will see a reduction in amount of algae being eaten.

    I do not think you would run into conflict combining apple snails and Nerite snails.

  2. I would be wary of keeping them in your tank with those water parameters. I've heard that otos are tolerant of pH, but at the same time I hear people complaining of how hard they are to keep. You can try slowly acclimating them, but I would worry about long term success.

    They're an amazonian fish an generally come from soft, acidic waters. The only people I've known (myself included) who kept them long term, with success, and had them spawn kept them in acidic, soft water.

  3. I think part of the attitude is that goldfish are seen as common, disease carrying, and sometimes ugly fish that you cannot build a planted tank around or mix species with.

    To be honest I had this view for many years - but I was also working in stores where goldfish came in sick regardless of what we did on our end. On the other hand, I could build huge, gorgeous planted tanks and reef tanks with multiple species, have breeding successes and watch all kinds of interesting behaviour.

    My opinion didn't change until I worked at a store where we had a local supplier who held fish for a while before shipping out, shipped them with great care, and also loved goldfish himself.

    Sometimes, I still look at my tank and think about the fantastic softwater planted tank I could have with ease! But, after I get my larger aquarium I'll be able to indulge myself with both, so... ;)

  4. Hi all,

    I've manage to get the water in my tank suitable for goldfish. With the addition of crushed coral, the pH is 7.5, the GH is about 60 ppm and the KH is 80 ppm.

    However, my tap water is very very soft with a pH of maybe 6.

    The difficulty now seems to be that if I do a water change of anything over 25% I wind up with VERY stressed fish. Over the holidays my friend caring for my fish didn't do a water change, or even top the tank up. After I did a water change and refilled the tank I probably had added 35-40% new water.

    The next day my pearslcale was bottom sitting with very red-streaked fins. After a few days, he is improving. Last time my calico lionhead did the same thing. I like to do lots of frequent water changes, so the idea that water changes are effecting my fish in a negative way is...well, kind of stressful!

    Is my only solution to do very frequent, but very small water changes? Should I try and reduce the hardness and pH just slightly?

  5. As someone who has kept fish most of her life, and has been actively involved with saltwater (mostly reef tanks and breeding and raising seahorses) goldfish were often my 'dirty secret'.

    Of course I'd usually come to find out that most other keepers liked them, and after seeing mine or hearing me talk about it I'd usually hear 'Oh, well I do have that one tank I could use...' ;)

  6. At a store I worked at once, we got in a very large fan tail from someone. It had a peculiar bump at the corner of its mouth. I spent some time observing it and realized that likely some time ago it had gotten a piece of gravel stuck in its mouth and the skin had started to grow around and over it.

    On closer inspection, I was very slowly and gently able to pop the little piece of gravel out. The fish was a bit stressed but no worse for wear. :)

  7. Thanks for pointing that out.

    I think you're right that the goldfish often travel. Also, they use more oxygen and produce more waste than tiny tropicals, so the shipping process is likely more hard on them.

    It's quite true. And I checked with more than one supplier to find out that the fish are often bagged the night before - not the day of - shipping. On top of this, the goldfish are producing far more waste and using more oxygen but often shipped in the same densities as tropicals with few exceptions.

    The absolute worst is in the early spring. The goldfish are often kept out in large ponds, and the weather is warm enough for parasites to run rampant but the goldfish have lowered immune systems. It got to the point where I had to set up giant holding tubs in the back so I could get the goldfish out of the bags they were shipped in, but then sit there and inspect every fish before putting in the display tanks for the inevitable anchor worms and lice that seem to explode in numbers that time of year.

  8. I just want to mention something here, because I see one statement a lot.

    Many people remark on how when they go into a pet store, all the fish look fine but the goldfish. I want to weigh in on that a little.

    I worked in a few petstores while I was going through high school and university. Every single one had a separate system for the goldfish - they would be on their own sump,which was usually more heavily filtered. But here's what would happen.

    We'd get an order. Tropicals, goldfish, etc. Without fail, nearly every time, the goldfish would crash immediately while the tropicals had far fewer problems. And sometimes it could be VERY bad. Unpack the fish one day, come in the next to a pile of goldfish bottom sitting, getting ich, and dying. The tropicals would be OK. In every store I worked in, getting goldfish orders or a large number of goldfish on an order would make us apprehensive - we'd be wondering if it would be an order that is going to crash.

    There are a number of reasons for this, especially if the fish are coming from China (pH and temps and other things can be VERY different) but it's not usually a case that the goldfish are being actively ignored or made to be sick while the other fish are properly looked after. You could have a very knowledgeable staff base and still have this kind of thing happen (quite literally) overnight.

  9. I think a lot of the differences you will see between the Chinese and Western forums is that, for the most part, people on these boards are casual goldfish keepers. That is, they enjoy them as pets and are less concerned about showing and breeding. Part of this may be due to the difficulty in finding high quality stock.

    The nicest goldfish I have were handpicked from a farm in China by someone who sends them to a business partner here. It seemed like it was a lot of trouble and effort for those involved - but I am happy they did it.

    The tropical fish and saltwater fish keeping forums I frequent are overwhelmingly male overall - but in these cases, finding rare, high quality stock of various species is not an issue and more people partake in the hobby in a serious manner.

    Anyway, thanks for the info - I look forward to more of your posts.

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