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Zookeeper

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  1. Hello, we have a 55 gallon tank containing one large (8 year old) fancy goldfish, one medium size (6 month old goldfish) and one large (7 inch long) dojo loach. Recently, we've had some fish deaths. We lost our other large (8 year old single tail goldfish) last summer, and also our golden Dojo loach who was seven years old. they died within a few weeks of each other. We have had them in the same tank for all of those years. We have had huge amounts of rain the past couple of years, and we have well water. I suspect that possibly the excess rain may be washing weird stuff into our well water that would normally be in lesser amounts. Just a theory. Recently, we acquired two small calico fancy goldfish, and lost them within a matter of weeks. Last winter, we also acquired a fancy goldfish, (we bought it with the medium sized goldfish we have now) and it also died after a couple of months. We have had fish for years and have never had this much problem with fish deaths. Our water tests for Ammonia have always been zero to 0.25ppm, and I have been doing a partial water change and cleaning the tank and vacuuming the gravel about every week to ten days. I change the filters approximately once a month. Tonight, I noticed our large fancy goldfish acting very distressed, and her veins were showing brightly in her fins and tail. I have never seen her this way. I tested the water and it was 0.25 ppm for ammonia, and over 7 for PH. (I don't currently have a complete test kit, so I couldn't test for nitrates, etc, but I do know our water is higher in nitrates and has always been) I did a partial water change (about 18 - 20 gallons), and put in clean decorative fixtures, and cleaned the tank and vacuumed the gravel, and she is acting better now, but still slightly distressed. Also, we have always filtered the tank with two 55 gallon capacity filter pumps. One pump died, and one was ancient and covered with algae that I couldn't get off, so I also switched that one out and we now have two new pumps; one 45 gallon capacity and one 35 - 45 gallon capacity, so, I'm assuming that the two pumps should be up to filtering our 55 gallon tank, correct? (we like to use two, just in case one fails). However, I'm wondering if maybe they DONT provide sufficient filtration, and that's part of the problem? Our other goldfish is acting fine, although he is darker so I can't tell if his fins are bloodshot. And, of course, our loach doesn't have a problem. So, just wondering if anyone has thoughts on why we've had all these problems lately? And what else can I do?
  2. Never mind, the fish store responded and they see nothing wrong. I've only had this fish a few days. I don't need or have time to answer the other questions, as the remaining fish are and have been healthy. As I've said, I've had a healthy tahk for several years. There have been no changes to the water parameters. thanks for your time.
  3. I just bought this fish from what I THOuGHT was a reputable aquarium/ fish supply store. Had very good reviews and they have lots of exotic fish. All we wanted were a couple of goldfish, but I wanted healthy ones, which is why I chose this store over someplace like a commercial pet store. I wasn't particularly impressed with the store when we got there, but it seemed ok; set up more or less like a pond store. . We have a 12 year old goldfish who just lost her two friends who were also old, and I wanted the new fish as companions for her. After I got the fish home, I introduced them to the tank as we don't really currently have a way to quarantine anything. I noticed this mark (or marks) on this fish yesterday. I got the fish Sunday. I think the mark on the right side of the face may just be normal markings. I am not sure about what the white spot is on the left. To me it looks like scale loss, but could it be ich? Fungus? Something else? I am getting very nervous as since we have bought the fish (we bought another goldfish and a dojo loach) the store no longer answers their phone, and only answers emails every 24 hours IF you are lucky. When I emailed them pictures of this fish they said they didn't get them and asked me to re-send, and that was almost 24 hours later. They DID get them, if looking at my sent messages means anything, but I sent them again in two different ways just to be sure. No answer since. The fish acts healthy, as they all do. Very hungry; it's practically a feeding frenzy in there every time I feed them. We have had a healthy tank over the past twelve years I've had the three old fish I referred to above, with no problems at all. Help, anyone???
  4. Well, when he gets big enough, he will be leaving somewhere anyway, because the tank will not be big enough for him and as I said, we do want to catch him and get him friends. he can see his reflection in the glass, so he has something. And he does hang with the goldfish. But I really think the koi was the culprit. He loves lettuce, and the lettuce I gave him LOOKS like a fish tail. He has not gone out yet because we had two spells of very cold weather in May...but as soon as the water warms he can go in the pond and there I can feed him lettuce if he wants it, I know he wont be nibbling on the other fish in the pond. .
  5. Thank you everyone. We will have the water tested. Last time the nitrate level was at 40, and the fish store that was ok, that it was probably as good as it was going to get for the fish that we had. Right now the test strips show the ammonia level as "ideal"..the lowest mark on the strip, and the nitrate as being on the second marker of the strip. I will look for the test kit. I think the koi probably damaged the little goldfish. I'm thinking he thought her tail was lettuce. My stupid fault for using that kind of lettuce. He is going out very soon, but we do have to wait for the water to warm. The clown loach is entirely non-aggressive. WE got him before we realized he was a school fish. He is impossible to catch, we have tried quite a few times, and we don't want to constantly stress all the fish trying to catch him . He seems ok, he is actually quite reclusive, and that is normal from what I've read.. I would like to get him some friends, but he will have to get bigger and slower before we can move him. I actually know someone who has a clown loach they have kept for three years with goldfish. He seems fine. We routinely use aquarium salt because it was recommended by the aquarium store. It reduces stress and boosts immune system. We are following the directions for use, as well as the water conditioner. I doubt that we will get another tank. At this rate, that's the last thing on my agenda.
  6. Too late she's dead. From my research last night, I'm guessing it was fin rot from the high PH level, which runs about 8.5. Although she showed no signs of anything, we never noticed any symptoms of it on her at all. I have never seen it but I read what it is supposed to look like. As I said, my son was not very good about adding aquarium salt and water conditioner at every water change (I already said it was 10 per cent water change) And the absence of those probably contributed to her decline in immunity. I also read that sometimes fish will tear up the tails of the females in trying to mate. I wonder if anyone has experienced this? I was only using the test strips so I can't give number levels, but I know the ph level because we had the water tested at the aquarium store. The store told us our levels were good for everything else, and the test strips seem to confirm that. We have a Whisper filter for a 55 gallon tank and an Aqueon filter for a 75 to 100 gallon tank, so there is plenty of filtration and water movement. We change the filters over a period of days, first one, then a few days later we change the other, so that there is no significant loss of good bacteria. I read that the following can cause loss of fins/ fin rot: Poor water quality (resulting in bacterial infection) Very high or very low PH levels Mating attempts ( I have never seen this behavior in our fish) Aggressive fish (ours all get along) Feeding large amounts of vegetation (I wonder about this, since I gave them the lettuce...although I've done that lots before with no ill effects) Do you think we should try adding driftwood to lower the ph? I've been told this can be very touchy.... Has anyone ever experienced this and/ or have a theory?
  7. Hi we just got this goldfish about three months ago. We have a 55 gallon tank with two other common goldfish, a weather loach, a very small clown loach, and a koi who is due to be leaving for our pond in the next few days. He is about 6 inches long. They all have been together for several months. We change the water roughly 10 per cent about every three days. The tank has two filters and a bubble wand., also a moss ball (concealed from the goldfish) to help control the nitrates.. The water quality has been good except that the PH is always high. All the fish have been healthy and normal. My adult son has been taking care of the fish for me most of the time since May, helping out since he's home from college. He's not very good about adding aquarium salt and water conditioner like he should, but he has been keeping the tank clean and been consistent with water and filter changes. We change the filters once a month. This little fish was perfectly happy and normal when I fed her last night. I forgot to feed them this morning, and my son fed them when he came home in the afternoon. I went to do their water change tonight and feed them, and she was floating with her fins missing. Looks like the others have chewed them off? I thought she might have gotten sick, been floating, and they just nibbled at her, but I tested the water and all the levels look good to me. What can I do for her? I was able to hand feed her a little. I have her in a cup, but obviously she can't stay there long. Help please! Or should we just euthanize her? What would cause this? Oh, also, I gave them some lettuce last night. idk if that has anything to do with it, but the lettuce is all gone. Go figure she is my favorite. Seems that's always the case....
  8. OK, well, thats what I thought. I have tried several people but no one has the right tank conditions either...so I guess back to the store he goes. pretty sure they will take him back..
  9. Oh, also, we've had him just about six days now.
  10. Not exactly a goldfish question, but maybe someone can help? Recently we bought some new fish for our tank. One of them was a clown loach, in a nutshell I have always wanted one but never really researched them, and the sales clerk was, shall we say, anxious to make a sale. We have a weather loach in our tank now and I just figured they'd bond. After we got the clown loach home, THAT is when I did the research and discovered that our tank isn't exactly what he needs, according to what I read. They are supposed to have water 72 - 84, and other clown loaches as they are schooling fish. They are also supposed to have a tank that simulates a river bottom with lots of cover (which I think we have), a power head or otherwise moving water to simulate the river (which we have, we have two filters and a bubble wand and the water does move), at LEAST a 35 gal tank to start (ours is 55), and not necessarily bright light (every day our fish have a break from the tank lights, sometimes we only light one side or the other, and the lights are off at night and through the morning til usually around noon. And they are supposed to be with non aggressive fish. We have two koi who will be leaving for our pond as soon as the weather and pond water warm, 3 goldfish, and a weather loach. All the fish are small except one koi, and they all get along fine. So my initial thought was to rehome the clown loach or take him back to the store. But I am worried that that will be just as stressful as leaving him where he is. He seems to be doing fine. Our tank temperature ranges from 68 - 72. We do not have a heater and can't really get one because all the others are cold water fish. The clown loach swims with the other fish and eats every morning. What should I do? Keep him? Find someone who has the right tank conditions for him? Or take him back? Oh, and yes I know our tank is a little overcrowded, this is because of the idiot sales clerk advising us that we could get that many fish, but, as I said, two will be leaving soon, so we should be ok for the most part after that. I just tested the water and all the readings are fine.
  11. My husband is in there talking to all the fish and mixing up the stuff. God bless him.
  12. We once took our hamster to the vet. She was having digestion issues (diarhea). I was appalled when the vet told me he used the same size thermometer for a hamster as all his dog and cat patients.. Anyway, he saved her for a few more months, but it was an interesting experience.. Also so painful when our hamsters died over the years that we finally decided not to get any more.
  13. He has already been diagnosed by a fish expert. That's why I know there's not much else we can do. He circles can't swim straight, has gotten to the point where it is affecting his ability to eat and is very stressful for the other fish, especially his best bud. We have been working for months to improve the water quality and it is now quite good except the PH is a little high, and there's not much we can do about that. Thanks!
  14. There used to be a topic on this but I can't find it. I know you use clove oil but isn't using clove oil and vodka better? And what are the proportions? Our goldfish has either a severe inner ear problem or brain tumor, or something similar. We've been trying to help him for months but he's slowly declining, and it's time, I can't stand to see him suffer. What vodka he doesn't use, will be for us.
  15. I talked to someone who is familiar with Koi at Petsmart a week or so ago. He said that it is very possible that the Koi is winterizing, even though she is inside, he said he has seen them do that bf. When we tested the water, the PH in the tap water was 8.9. He said not to use any more PH down stuff, and the water would probably be ok, that the fish are acclimated, and gave me instructions on how to acclimate any new fish we get to the high Ph.. The nitrates level in the tank was down to 60. All the other levels, except the Ph, were fine. He also gave me instructions on how to transition her to the pond water in spring (I said before that we have a big woodland pond with other Koi in it, we will put her in there when it warms up in the springtime). As far as Mr Fish the goldfish, he said that he probably has an inner ear issue that is affecting his balance, a birth defect not too uncommon in pet store goldfish, due to inbreeding. We bought a new bubble wand and may try a moss ball, not sure how that will do in the high ph. The fish seem happy enough, all things considered. The loach is great. Thanks everyone for your help!
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