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Bruce S

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  1. All of my goldfish came from Petco / Petsmart / LFS. Are they culls that some breeder with thousands of fish thought not worthy of raising further? Of course they are. Do they have flaws? Sure they do - this one has a web-tail, that one has a slightly out-of-proportion body, the white ryukin with the red fins wears no "lipstick" - many have a bent or formerly broken fin, or get a little tipsy after breakfast. Do they come as close to "show standard" as any representative of their breed I could find locally? Absolutely. Before I started buying goldfish, (going back many years!) I would read books about them, poring over the show standards, remembering what each breed was supposed to look like. Then, when I went to the fish store, I would look for fish with healthy swimming postures, straight, symmetrical fins and attractive markings. If I got really lucky, I might find one or two like that on a trip to the LFS (now, Petco / Petsmart, as they've kind of taken over the local market). But there's something else to look for. Something that may prove more important than a doubled anal fin, or appropriate wen growth or symmetrical eyes on a telescope . . . I call it "The Cuteness Factor", and it's a gigantic influence. I can't describe it to you, but . . . You'll know it when you see it. And that fish will come home with you. ~Bruce
  2. Thanks, 4prettyfish & Spillie! My wife has COPD, so her illness will not pass quickly, but she keeps re-contracting pneumonia . . . As much as I love the effect that green water had on Tubbs, I'd like to see my fish again . . . I'm thinking about filling up the top of that tank with dwarf water lettuce as a nutrient soak. (The other plants in the tank don't seem to be up to the job...) ~Bruce
  3. Thanks, Everyone! Thanks for the clarifications on green water and swim bladder - don't know how I missed it all this time, but finding it was, as Dnalex said, serendipitous! (Also, thank you all for your kind wishes for my wife!) ~Bruce
  4. "Calypso, Calypso . . . " (Who else thought of the original fish guy, Jacques Cousteau, and the little ship which took us all on so many adventures years ago . . . ) She's a beauty! Sad to hear of the loss of her little speckled friend, but glad your little adventurer made it to her destination! ~Bruce
  5. Hi, All! Just a bit of encouragement and a thought to consider, perhaps a clue to a cure.... Back in - September, maybe? - I went upstairs to get ready for bed and noticed that two of my ryukins, Richtofen (Named for her red color and extra-long, winglike pectorals) and Tubbs, were a little floaty. Nothing too serious, they just had a bit of extra positive bouyancy. Sure enough, by next morning, Richtofen was swimming normally, so I looked for Tubbs . . . Sunk. Sitting on the sand, unmoving. When he swam up, he fell like a stone. Even when he strained himself to reach the surface and grab a gulp of air, it would only slow his descent a little bit - and he almost always lost the bubble on the way back down. I felt bad watching him work so hard, only to lose his prize. Autumn and winter passed, and while Tubbs didn't aquire any sores from his belly-bumping, he also made no progress toward swimming normally. He'd pick up pellets which landed near him, but couldn't effectively search them out. As time went on, I learned (mostly from the folks at Koko's) that a goldfish who sinks nearly never rises again, and learned to love Tubbs for who he was and his charming peek-a-boo among the plants. In early April, the water in the tank began to cloud up. At first, I thought that I'd gone beyond the limits of fish in the tank, but then realized that the green cast in my white bucket indicated euglena beginning to bloom - and bloom they did! It wasn't long before both goldfish tanks (Yes, there are two now...) were deep, bright green. (The newer setup, a 40-breeder, has since cleared, though it still takes on a tea-colored cast from the mopani wood that makes up much of its decor, but the older system, the 37 tall, remains a brilliant green. This is the tank Tubbs and Richtofen live in, but if they're not within an inch and a half of the glass, you'll never see them. Fast-forward to yesterday, mid-May. A rotund orange shape gliding past the glass, propelled by a dark tail. What the . . . ?! It took a while before I could get enough sightings to confirm, but Tubbs is most definitely _back_! I've seen him swimming normally, with neutral bouyancy, at all levels of the tank. Feeding with the others, and scoring pellets with grace and style. I am a happy goldfish keeper, even though I have a green tank! In fact, I'm wondering if the green water didn't have something to do with Tubbs' recovery. (Less happy about other things, like the three months my wife's been in the Intensive Care Unit, but I'll take what I can get!!) ~Bruce
  6. I read somewhere once that you can't officially call it a butterfly if it's not a telescope. This is a cool looking fish though, no matter how bulgy his eyes are! I'd have no problem calling this guy a broad-tailed fantail / ryukin (hard to tell in the top view...), though certainly not to the point of squaretail, like some of the fish I've seen 'round this forum! ~Bruce
  7. The original fantails ("Wakin" in Japanese) are a longer-bodied fish. I've seen some of them marketed as sarassa comet goldfish, with long, long, slender red & white bodies - and sharply doubled tails! From what I've read, wakin are the most common goldfish in Japan, though when I was there, we only saw koi! ~Bruce
  8. Just to throw something into the pot of info stew here, I run multiple filters on my tanks whenever I can. One canister, one or two HOBs. Each week, when I do a water change, I squeeze / rinse the sponges and other media from _one_ of the filters in a bucket of water I've siphoned from the tank, before I dispose of that water. This way, the bacteria in the filter media aren't shocked by temperature or chemsitry of the rinse water, and only part of the tank's total biofilter is disturbed at any given time. When I'm done, I have the option of dumping that bucket of black water in the toilet - or the garden. ~Bruce
  9. Gotta love the British orandas! Here in the 'States, we don't often see lovely veil / broadtail orandas like those. (Not at the local level, anyway...) ~Bruce
  10. Arched back. Tail tuck at _just_ shallower than 90 degrees. Not a ton of wen. I'm going to agree with some of the other folks up there, and say "ranchu" is closest - although one whose tail tuck isn't as deep as some others! I suppose you can go with "lionchu", if you'd prefer. Handsome fella! ~Bruce
  11. This big lad is a comet - he's what those little minisubs will become when they grow up! Sounds like you've got the right tank in mind for these fish, as single-tailed goldfish like a bit more room to move than double-tailed fancies. As for aggression, it can happen, especially if the big one is a male. How's he behaving with the little ones around him? ~Bruce
  12. Keep your eyes open ... I scored an AquaClear 110 at my local PetSmart for $67.99 (plus CT sales tax, but minus shipping) the other day. Along with AquaClear being rebranded Fluval, I've noticed that FilStar canister filters are now A.P.I. ~Bruce
  13. Sounds as though it might be the hardy waterlily "Chromatella". That's a smaller variety, but still pretty big for an aquarium. Good luck with it! ~Bruce
  14. Those two make for a lovely team, and that baby's fins are _gorgeous_! ~Bruce
  15. Fish will absolutely prefer different levels in your tank! My neons prefer the lower part of the center third of the tank (75 gallon), if that makes sense. Harlequin rasboras like the top third, but not the very surface - that's the home of guppies, green fire tetras and my lone pencilfish. Blue ram cichlids (Mikrogeophagus ramirezi) spend most of their time within 4-6" of the bottom, while corydoras cats busy themselves between the stems of the plants at gravel level. Rainbowfish duel with the currents in the top half, while my pearl gourami spends most of her time in the bottom half. (With occasional visits to the surface for a bubble...) My green zebra lace angelfish is usually just about dead-center between the gravel and the waves. Most of those fish are out in the open most of the time, but the black phantom tetras and emperor tets tend to lurk among the foliage, periodically making a surprise appearance. Your 110 is going to be _awesome_! ~Bruce
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