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I am planning to use this blog to document what I've learned and what I hope to still learn after keeping goldfish for 7 years now. It might be more wordy than other blogs here, but perhaps oddly I find my goldfish to inspire a lot of thought in me that either isn't comprehensible or interesting to friends and family who view fish--and especially goldfish--as some kind of pseudo-living screensaver. So, a few thoughts to start: I think part of the pleasure of this hobby is both the capacity to experiment and the pleasure in keeping things steady; that is, on the one hand, I'm (and I'm sure most all fish keepers) always interested in giving my fish a better life: better food, better things to "do" in the tank (like plants or new substrate), better filters, better health management. On the other, there's pride in have rock-solid parameters, a rock-solid routine, etc. I think I've leaned toward the former rather than the latter in my attempts to make my goldfish happy. Lately, during my first fish Queenie's last few days and now her death, I've been on a near-paranoid spending spree to improve, well, anything and everything in my 29-gallon tank for Duchess, my remaining fish and her former tank mate. I've gotten another AquaClear 70 today in the hope of having really REALLY clean water, and the plants I had bought when Q was still alive seem to be doing much better than the previous plants I've and they've killed with varying degrees of pleasure, of course. That's probably because I bought a T5 lamp in the past couple of months, changed the substrate to black Tahitian moon sand, and am using root tabs and Flourish comprehensive. I've started a QT for a potential new fish (hence the "two fish" of this blog title) once I get everything right in the main tank. I'm concerned that D is getting lonely and stressed. So I think I am doing some things right, thanks to Erik Johnson and the Internet. But it's still not enough--D has a mark on her tail that I don't like the looks of, and my instinct is to swab her with H2O2 and salt her, but I can't because of the plants. Trade offs. I read about goldfish altogether too much and still can't seem to make things "perfect." Especially since Q died I have been feeling guilty about not having learned quickly enough the proper ways to take care of goldfish. She spent the first two years of her life in a 10-gallon tank that was horrendously maintained; she was my ex's fish for a year until I intervened when her tankmates all died or were essentially severely compromised from ammonia poisoning. She was always charming: intelligent, active, and beautiful. She was always gentle with other fish despite her vigor. She transformed from a little round red girl into a white fish with long, long fins nearly overnight once I bought her a 29-gallon tank and at least tried to control their water parameters. I am still not very good at keeping their, or I guess Duchess's, water chemistry right. I've had the biofilter die a few times, probably due to something stupid and over-zealous I did, or from bad luck power outages, columnaris, etc. But I suppose that as much as I want to make the fish happy, I also want to have some control over how long they live, especially given much quoted average lifespans of 10-20 years. I feel oddly competitive with nature, I suppose, even though it's their lives, and ultimately they will pass away when they have to, water quality or not. But in further entries I will try to document getting to know D better even though I have had her for 5.5 years, and also documenting getting a new companion for D once I have a stable QT. I realize now that Queenie was always my focus, and according to my boyfriend, a bit of an obsession especially when she spent the last two years of her life in fragile health. Even in the past few days I've noticed things about D that had never occurred to me. She is also a gentle fish and was laying beside Q when she died. She's smarter than I've ever given her credit for. She seems, for example, to understand pointing (??). And I look forward to learning new things at the same time I try to keep things stable. [img]http://i1164.photobucket.com/albums/q563/Lompoc727/D%20and%20quarantine%20tank%203.10.2015_zpsjcojdtwd.jpg[/img]
Hello again everyone! I haven't been around much lately, and interesting things are happening here, so I figured I'd go ahead and start a blog! Warning: The likely hood of me keeping this updated on any sort of regular basis is very slim XD So to briefly catch up, I got my two very first goldfish ever back in Feburary. It was on a whim, and I was in no way prepared for the undertaking ahead. In the months since then I've had drama with sick fish, broken filters, snails & bullying. But today I am pleased to announce that my 55 gallon dirted/planted tank is 100% cycled, and Asimov & Kritlaq are in their new home! They've only been in their new tank for about an hour and a half, but thus far things seem to be going relatively okay. Kritlaq wanted to be a little bully and chase Asimov around (who is 2/3 his size), but I was having none of that! I stood in front of the tank for more than half an hour straight supervising, and any time Kritlaq starting copping a 'tude I'd reach in and touch him. Not hard, not wiping off his slime coat, but a definite touch. It seems to have gotten through to him. "You touch him, I touch you." I suspect there'll be more drama in the days to come, but as of right now I feel comfortable leaving them together until tomorrow. If Asimov is clamping his fins come morning, then I'll have to take more serious action. Let us pray they learn to get along! Anyhow I'll try to keep y'all updated, and get some good pictures for you too!
I finally decided to start a blog. In this first entry I thought I'd write about my journey into the world of Goldfish. I've been keeping fish on and off since I was a child. My dad got me started with a tank full of basic guppies, which eventually became several tanks full of guppies. I then moved on to having several tropical tanks. As I got older I stopped being interested in fish and moved on to other types of animals. But, eventually I came back to them in my 20s. I got extremely into fancy guppies. Then there was another break while life got really difficult and I couldn't keep fish. It was in my late 20s when I met a boyfriend who had a couple large tanks in his basement that brought me back into the hobby again, and I've been into it ever since. When I was with living with my boyfriend R and his family, there was this goldfish who we called Fatty. Unfortunately, neither of us really had enough experience to know how to care for Fatty properly. S/He lived in a tank with tropical fish and a large catfish. Eventually the tank got to be really messy as all the fish got larger. I started doing more research and catching up on the knowledge I'd lost during my years of not keeping fish. I learned that keeping Fatty in that tank was not good for him/her or the other fish. Sadly, we decided it was best to re-home Fatty. By this point Fatty had gone from being 1.5" to 6". After no longer living at R's house, I just couldn't see my life without fish anymore. So I started out with a bunch of small tanks with guppies and other small tropicals. But guppies got to be too tedious and heartbreaking. I moved on to larger tropicals and native North American fish. During this time I worked one day a week at a local fish store and began improving my knowledge of fishkeeping. A couple years later I moved across the country to San Diego to live with my current boyfriend. I brought some of my large tropicals and my native fish with me. It is here that I can say I learned the most about fish in my life. I worked at two fish stores and began to have a true understanding of water chemistry and different needs for different types of fish. One of the stores I worked at sold a lot of goldfish, and this is where I began my love affair with the species. Until I began working at the fish store in SD I can't say that I really gave goldfish a second look. They were just sort of, meh... But not long after beginning that job I became enamored with them. I decided to convert one of my tanks into a goldfish tank so that I could bring a couple of my favorite fish home. My very first goldfish picked me. He had such personality and I was instantly drawn to him because of it. I HAD to have him. I decided to name him Cosmo: My second fish was a beautiful dragon eye from Buy Goldfish Online who I named Wanda. I wanted my first two fish to be named for the two characters in "The Fairly Odd Parents" who disguise themselves as goldfish. Unfortunately Wanda ended up being a male, from what I could tell, and was re-named Waldo. Sadly, I lost Cosmo fairly quickly because I did not know goldfish could choke on small gravel, and one day while I was napping he got a piece stuck in his throat and I did not wake up until it was too late to save him. One day I was at the store I worked at, and a lady came in looking to re-home her goldfish because she was being deployed overseas. She had with her a beautiful white and orange fantail. I immediately fell in love. That is where I got my Lacey. I also got a couple more fish and realized that I was going to need more room. I re-homed several of my tropical fish which were going to get too big for me to keep anyways, and moved all my goldfish into my 100 gallon tank. I traded some of my tropicals for Patches, my very unusual fantail with the almost telescope eyes. He too had been traded in to a local pet store. I also got some others. Zora, my first black moor: Sabrina Brick They lived in the 100 gallon together. Until I started having some problems. Sadly, I did not understand yet that goldfish required more water changes than my tropicals, or that they required larger water changes. I didn't have enough filtration. I did quarantine my fish, but I did not treat them for the proper parasites. I ended up having a large die out. In the end, I lost many expensive and very loved fish. To this day I do not know what the illness was that was taking them out one by one, but I suspect it was something that probably could have been prevented easily had I known proper quarantine procedures. I still had Lacey, Patches, and my black moor who I called Zora. Unfortunately I lost Zora to some sort of brain injury, and Patches had swim bladder problems so bad that I had to euthanize her when it got to the point that she was getting ulcers and would no longer eat. Goldfish keeping was getting emotionally difficult. I almost gave up after losing so many. I began doing some research, and was helped by some people on goldfish facebook groups and websites, and was also pointed in the direction of Koko's by a friend I'd made when I was working at the fish store. I stripped out the gravel, added a second filter to the tank, and now I quarantine and treat for internal parasites and flukes before adding new fish. I just wish I had come to Koko's sooner. So I guess in the end I've come a long way from where I was when I first brought Cosmo home, and even farther from when I was taking care of Fatty for R. But one thing I've learned is that you are always learning. Currently I have nine goldfish. Five in my 100 gallon, three in a 75 gallon, and one in quarantine. Their pictures can be seen in my signature. Anyways, that is my story... at least summed up as much as possible. Note: I decided to move this here from the other blogs section.
I have always loved animals. I have always had something to take care of, whether it was a kitten, a mouse, a fish, or a turtle, I wasn't happy unless I had an animal to love. Well over the years, I have had and lost many animals. It was out of my control, but incidentally, I believe it to be the reason I now have 6 cats and am fostering 6 more for a grand total of 12 cats, along with my 7 fish, and my puppy, and I still want more animals. Luckily, I can clean up my house very well so I don't look like I have that many animals (; I don't do too well with people, and most of the time I feel like I can only be comfortable with animals. I am introverted and cynical, and I feel like the only thing that makes my soul shine is my animals, and taking care of animals. It's my life's calling, and I hope to work at a Humane Society one day (: (Or become a world famous Conservationist and save the Cheetahs, either one really) It started back up with Chip. She is my crazy girl, and even though she is anti-social she still adores me and likes to sleep on my side. Chip loves Luna and Ashelia, but not any of my boys. I got her in 11th Grade when she was 8 weeks old and I vowed to take her with me when I moved. She still lives with me (; Luna was my second baby, and I nursed her back to health. She had severe conjunctivitis and was sick with an Upper Respiratory infection. Her vet now believes that her breathing problem is because of a congenital defect that she has because of her being inbred. She is such a sweet girl, and there is no boundaries to her love. She is such a lover and she follows me around the house. I adore her so much. She is just an amazing cat, and she is still kitten sized weighing only 3-4 pounds full grown. She is a little girl with a huge heart <3 Ashelia was my third cat, I got her from a neighbor when I realized Luna would be happy to have someone her size to play with (: Sadly, Luna got sick shortly after getting Ashe. Instead of letting her terrorize Chip, we happened into Lucky. Our Landlord caught a man trying to put Lucky into a recycling bin, because he didn't want the kitten to get into the busy street I live on, and he couldn't take him home. My Landlord called me and asked me if I wanted him. I couldn't say no. He was the loudest kitten ever. He would only stop crying when I was holding him. He has been a mommas boy ever since (; Him and Ashe absolutely love each other, though their relationship has been strained since he was neutered. He was super skinny when we first got him. He was all fur. He fattened up really quickly though! I was content with 4 kittens for a while. Then it became spring. I happened upon a craigslist ad asking for an SOS for a tiny week old kitten. I wasn't looking for a kitten, and it was posted on the free section which is notorious for allowing animals to be cruelly killed. I acted immediately. I couldn't get there till later at night, and I told the woman that if no one claimed him by then, I would take him. Cloud was my first bottle baby, and he still acts like a baby. He hugs my face and gives me lots of kisses. He loves me as much as I love him (: I was smart enough to get a good picture of him the day after I got him Monkey was totally unexpected, and was originally a foster. But I didn't want to give him back to the people who were fighting over him. Neither were good people. Both were drug addicts, neither took care of their animals, and neither would have been able to get him better. Luckily neither claimed him when he was 8 weeks, and I am keeping him no matter what! Monkey was 4 weeks old when we got him. Cloud and him are best friends. Unfortunately, I don't have a good picture of Lucy, but she is going to be going to a new home with someone who can give her the space and exercise she needs. I will miss that puppy. But this is what is best for her. I have fostered 4 bottle baby kittens, and I am currently fostering 4, 8 week old scared kittens, along with a mama stray we named Widget and her 10 week old son, Gizmo. Here is my foster cat blog that I update on the foster kittens I care for through the Humane Society. Check it out! There are cute kitten pictures! http://tinykittenpaws.tumblr.com/