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Goldfish Nipping Another Goldfish


Barnacles

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My common goldfish is about 5" long with another 3.5" fantail and a 3" black moor in a 29 gallon tank. I know it's overstocked but they still have room, and I'm moving the common into a 55 gallon when hes around 7" or so.

Now for the past few days I saw my black moor swimming at the top and it looked like my common was playfully nipping at him, the black moor didn't look hurt or anything. I just turned my goldfish tank's light on and saw my black moor resting on the gravel. His pectoral fins are torn, and his back fins as well, they are split like they have been cut.

It looks pretty bad and I imagine my black moor is in a lot of pain.. what do I do???

Right now I have the black moor in a 6" net against the glass of the tank. The big goldfish can't attack him anymore. I just fed them more than usual so he isn't attacked.. I hope it will help.. his fins are all torn and split...

Edited by Barnacles
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First: This sounds to me like there really isn't enough room in your tank. (aside from being overstocked) Your moor could be being bullied because the common needs more space. Common goldfish are longer, sleeker, and faster than fancies, and need more room to swim without bumping into another fish/plant/etc. Fish will bully each other because of lack of space.

Do you have a tote or QT tank that you could set up? Your moor needs to be isolated so we can treat for those torn up fins and allow him to rest.

Also, I need you to fill out this form again:


    Test Results for the Following:
  • * Ammonia Level (tank):
  • * Nitrite Level (tank)
  • * Nitrate level (Tank)
  • * Ammonia Level (Tap):
  • * Nitrite Level (Tap)
  • * Nitrate level (Tap)
  • * Ph Level, (Tank) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)
  • * Ph Level, (Tap) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)
    Other Required Info:
  • * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops?
  • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)?
  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners?
  • * Water temperature?
  • * How often do you change the water and how much?

  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change?
  • * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running?
  • * How many fish in the tank and their size?
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often?
  • * Any new fish added to the tank?
  • * Any medications added to the tank?
  • * List previous issues experienced (dropsy, SBD, etc.)
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus?
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.?
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment.
  • * You can really help us to identify with the concern more accurately if you post some pictures and a short video.

Edited by GoldenSpoiledRotten
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GoldenSpoiledRotten you hit the nail on the head... Fin nipping is general sign of not enough room and Commons and commets are more aggressive with there space than the fancy's :(

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You don't need to buy Melafix right now, or possibly at all. You do need to answer all the questions in the form ASAP so that we can make actual recommendations on what to do for the injured fish, as long as how to prevent future mishaps, although I believe that GSR has already covered that. :)

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Ok guys.. I'm going to the pet store right now to buy some Melafix. Be back soon.

Why are you going to get that... Melafix in a tank that is over crowed will cause suffocation. Making this problem worse :o

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    I'll fill out that form in a second. I have to make an ad on Craig's List really quick to give away the tropical fish in my 55 gallon.

What is in your 55? Is there a way you could just switch the tanks?

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    Test Results for the Following:
  • * Ammonia Level (tank): 1 ppm
  • * Nitrite Level (tank) 0 ppm
  • * Nitrate level (Tank) Around 10 ppm, maybe 15 ppm max.
  • * Ammonia Level (Tap):
  • * Nitrite Level (Tap): Not sure
  • * Nitrate level (Tap): Not sure
  • * Ph Level, (Tank) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines): Low 6, maybe 6.2 to 6.4.
  • * Ph Level, (Tap) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines): Not sure
    Other Required Info:
  • * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API Freshwater Master Test Kit
  • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? Top Fin 40 (I know it's not a very good filter, I'm going to add a second within a month.)
  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners? Tetra Aquasafe.
  • * Water temperature? About 73F.
  • * How often do you change the water and how much? 50% per week.

  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? About a week ago, 50%.
  • * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 29 gallon, been running for about 11 months. Got completely drained and moved about two months ago though.
  • * How many fish in the tank and their size? 3 fish, one 2.5" black moor, one 3" fantail, and one 5" common.
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often? Aqueon Algae Rounds and TetraFin Flakes, usually one algae wafer a day and two pinches of flakes, in split meals throughout the day.
  • * Any new fish added to the tank? No.
  • * Any medications added to the tank? Melafix.
  • * List previous issues experienced (dropsy, SBD, etc.) None.
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Frayed fins.
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? Stays at the bottom, occasionally swims around, DOES eat food.
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment. About 20 minutes of Melafix being in.


    I'll fill out that form in a second. I have to make an ad on Craig's List really quick to give away the tropical fish in my 55 gallon.

What is in your 55? Is there a way you could just switch the tanks?

In my 55, I have three silver hatchetfish and there albino corydoras. I have sand in my 55 gallon and gravel in my 29 gallon, so I don't know how my corydoras would do with gravel. I'll probably just put the common in the 55g and leave the two fancies in the 29g.

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You can switch the substrate over too, you just won't need quite as much in the 29 I think.

But if you want to get rid of the tropicals it is your choice. :)

Remind me, are you cycling right now? If not I want a large water change done on the goldfish tank to bring down that ammonia.

Also, is there melafix in the tank right now? If so, that's another reason to do the water change.

Edited by GoldenSpoiledRotten
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You can switch the substrate over too, you just won't need quite as much in the 29 I think.

But if you want to get rid of the tropicals it is your choice. :)

Remind me, are you cycling right now? If not I want a large water change done on the goldfish tank to bring down that ammonia.

Also, is there melafix in the tank right now? If so, that's another reason to do the water change.

Yeah, I dosed 3 tsp in the tank. I guess it is still cycling if the ammonia is 1 ppm. But the point is, I really need to do something about this black moor.

Edited by Barnacles
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Right now, I would put anything in that may interfere with gill functions and/or the amount of dissolved oxygen of the tank water.

There are several issues that I have identified as being areas that need immediate attention:

1. The tank ammonia is at 1. This is really high, and the only saving grace right now is that the pH is low. However, I am very concerned that after 11 months, you are still getting 1.0 ppm ammonia. This tells me that your current set up (filter/gravel/etc) cannot handle the bio-load as it is. This is indication number 1 that there is overcrowding.

2. The tank pH is too low. We need to know the tap pH as well, to determine why you are getting such a low pH in the tank. This pH is not good at all, and if the water isn't well buffered, it could mean that you will see a pH crash at some point in the future.

3. Overcrowding. Some times, a 29 gallon tank may temporarily hold 3 fish for a short period of time without issue. However, this is not the case here. You are getting a lot of ammonia, which tells us that the system as you have it can't hand three fish. The fish are also telling you this, as evidenced by the bullying.

Do you have a QT tank/tub you can remove the injured fish to treat? You will need to use aquarium salt/Morton's canning & pickling salt, or some salt (sodium chloride) that does not contain additives. Let us know about the QT, and I can guide you on the next step.

I think the common really needs to move rehomed elsewhere, either to a bigger tank, or to a pond.

You need another filter ASAP, it looks like.

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Right now, I would put anything in that may interfere with gill functions and/or the amount of dissolved oxygen of the tank water.

There are several issues that I have identified as being areas that need immediate attention:

1. The tank ammonia is at 1. This is really high, and the only saving grace right now is that the pH is low. However, I am very concerned that after 11 months, you are still getting 1.0 ppm ammonia. This tells me that your current set up (filter/gravel/etc) cannot handle the bio-load as it is. This is indication number 1 that there is overcrowding.

2. The tank pH is too low. We need to know the tap pH as well, to determine why you are getting such a low pH in the tank. This pH is not good at all, and if the water isn't well buffered, it could mean that you will see a pH crash at some point in the future.

3. Overcrowding. Some times, a 29 gallon tank may temporarily hold 3 fish for a short period of time without issue. However, this is not the case here. You are getting a lot of ammonia, which tells us that the system as you have it can't hand three fish. The fish are also telling you this, as evidenced by the bullying.

Do you have a QT tank/tub you can remove the injured fish to treat? You will need to use aquarium salt/Morton's canning & pickling salt, or some salt (sodium chloride) that does not contain additives. Let us know about the QT, and I can guide you on the next step.

I think the common really needs to move rehomed elsewhere, either to a bigger tank, or to a pond.

You need another filter ASAP, it looks like.

I don't have a quarantine tank, the only thing I have that the black moor can go in is a one gallon container, but thats not big enough. I'm trying to get rid of the tropical fish in my 55g so I can put the common in there. I just have to wait for someone to take the tropicals off my hands.

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Alex finished typing before I could, again! :rofl:

100% water change right now is what is needed to get all of the melafix out. I'd just be echoing him if I typed the rest.

Does it have to be 100%? Will 75% work? I'm currently draining the water outside to my yard, just wondering if I don't have to change 100%.

Edited by Barnacles
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  • * Ammonia Level (tank): 1 ppm
  • * Nitrite Level (tank) 0 ppm
  • * Nitrate level (Tank) Around 10 ppm, maybe 15 ppm max.

Torns fins will heal on their own with a water quality of 0 ammonia, 0 nitrite, under 20 ppm nitrates.

  • * Ammonia Level (Tap):
  • * Nitrite Level (Tap): Not sure
  • * Nitrate level (Tap): Not sure

Knowing this will help you keep the water quality levels above.

  • * Ph Level, (Tank) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines): Low 6, maybe 6.2 to 6.4.

This is too low. Keep your fish between the pH of 7.0 and 8.0. Crushed sea shells in your filter to stabilize minerals overtime and a buffering agent like Goldbuffer or Buff-it-up to stabilize the pH

  • * Ph Level, (Tap) (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines): Not sure

Knowing this helps you find out how to safely do water changes on your fish.

Other Required Info:

  • * Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API Freshwater Master Test Kit
  • * What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? Top Fin 40 (I know it's not a very good filter, I'm going to add a second within a month.)

This gives you 200GPH, you need a second filter with at least a 100 GPH turnover rate. Please fill it with filter sponge or bioballs. This media is needed to keep your cycle bacteria.

  • * What kind of water additives or conditioners? Tetra Aquasafe.
  • * Water temperature? About 73F.
  • * How often do you change the water and how much? 50% per week.

This may need to be increased to keep the water quality mentioned above. You may also need to test more often.

  • * How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? About a week ago, 50%.
  • * Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 29 gallon, been running for about 11 months. Got completely drained and moved about two months ago though.
  • * How many fish in the tank and their size? 3 fish, one 2.5" black moor, one 3" fantail, and one 5" common.
  • * What do you feed your fish and how often? Aqueon Algae Rounds and TetraFin Flakes, usually one algae wafer a day and two pinches of flakes, in split meals throughout the day.
  • * Any new fish added to the tank? No.
  • * Any medications added to the tank? Melafix.

Water changes is needed to remove the melafix. Also remove any carbon from the filter if you have it in there, it will have the medication in it as well. Two back to back water changes of over 50% each will be the same as a 100% water change.

  • * List previous issues experienced (dropsy, SBD, etc.) None.
  • * Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Frayed fins.
  • * Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? Stays at the bottom, occasionally swims around, DOES eat food.
  • * List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment. About 20 minutes of Melafix being in.
  • \

So sorry you have these issues. We all started with less than ideal situations with our fish. To keep it simple, if you aren't attached, get someone to temporarily re home your common while you are learning about goldfish care. Please provide a pic of the tank, depth of the gravel, and video of fish behavior. It took me a long time to type this so most of this information was probably covered. Thank you for your patience and time and work involved in caring for a sick fish :)

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Also, I was wondering if you would like to call your LFS and ask if they might take your tropicals. That way you won't have to deal with Craig'sList and still be able to get them out of the 55.

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It needs to be 100% to get all of the medicine out.

Yes, but before we do this, could you please get us the tap pH? That's critical, because it will dictate how that water change needs to be done.

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Oh my gosh... my black moor was in the net up against the glass so that the common couldn't bite him anymore. Now one of his split fins is stuck inside the mesh of the net.. do I cut the net? Can't remember the name, but it's the long fin that goes down their back. It split at one point, and the point if it is in the fine mesh of the net..

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That fin is pretty much twisted in the net.. I'm trying to get it out, but it looks like it hurts him.. he is jumping around everywhere.. I honestly think I may have to euthanize him somehow guys. His fin is really in there. It can't simply be pushed out. He has to be in pain.

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