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Comet GF bottom sitting and lethargic :\


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  • Regular Member

Test Results for the Following:

* Ammonia Level(Tank). 0ppm

* Nitrite Level(Tank). 0ppm

* Nitrate level(Tank). 5ppm

* Ammonia Level(Tap). 0pm

* Nitrite Level(Tap). 0ppm

* Nitrate level(Tap). 0pm

* Ph Level, Tank (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)

PH between 7/7.2 KH:0, Cl: 0

* Ph Level, Tap (If possible, KH, GH and chloramines)

Other Required Info:

* Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops? API master Drops

* Water temperature? 24c

* Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running? 11G running about 18months

* What is the name and "size of the filter"(s)? Filter that came with tank, fluval edge as well as a little green machine for alge

* How often do you change the water and how much? 10% a week

* How many days ago was the last water change and how much did you change? 20% yesterday and 40% today

* How many fish in the tank and their size? 1 rocket 2" long

* What kind of water additives or conditioners? Fluval aqualus and fluval cycle

* What do you feed your fish and how often? Pellets once a day

* Any new fish added to the tank? Nope

* Any medications added to the tank? Nope

* List entire medication/treatment history for fish and tank. Please include salt, Prazi, PP, etc and the approximate time and duration of treatment.prazi about 10 months ago

* Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus? Looks normal but keeps sitting on bottom of tank and was shaking for a couple of seconds earlier not as active but does move now and again. Yesterday he was swimming up to the top and breaking through the water then went back to sitting on the bottom.

* Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.? As above

Thanks Graeme

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  • Regular Member

This looks to be partially a water quality issue and he is also underfed or is not gaining weight properly because of the illness.

The tank for this fish should be ideally twice the size and there's no harm in changing all of the water out per week. A 20 gallon storage container will suffice as a tank if you happen to have one.

The shaking sounds like flashing when a fish has parasites that are making it uncomfortable, and may also be a reason why the fish looks lethargic. Do you have any medications on hand? Salt?

Also your fish is a lovely Shubunkin, not a Comet. :D

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  • Regular Member

Okay it all just happened over the past 2 days he was perfectly happy then all of a sudden stopped moving as much, I do have some salt I think so shall put some of that in.

Really I always that it was a comet ha thanks!

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  • Regular Member

Well it really is a comet, but calico comets are called shubunkins.  


I am not particularly concerned about the size of the tank, but I am concerned about your water changes.  We recommend a minimum of 50% of the water be changed weekly.  Lots of stuff builds up in the water, and it doesn't cause problems until it gets too much for the fish in question.


I have a couple of questions.  Is the tank pH that you measured recently typical for this tank or was it higher or lower previously?  What is the pH of your water out of the tap?  I ask because your tank pH is near the bottom of what is suitable for goldfish.  Sometimes tanks that have had little water changed  will have a falling pH that drops suddenly -- called a pH crash.  This can be fatal.  I asked about the pH of the tap water because that will indicate how much water you can change at once.


The other question has to do with with symptoms.  It looks like the gills on your fish are "flaring out."  Would you look at the fish from the top (and get a picture if you can) and observe if the gill covers flare out at the back or if they fit closely. Of course the gill covers will go in and out as the fish breathes.  If the gills covers do not close when they go "in", it indicates gill irritation.  The most common cause of this is gill flukes which can also cause other symptoms like you have described.


Salt will be a good idea, but first get the pH information


If you can find a medication that contains praziquantel, we can use that to treat for gill flukes.

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To be honest i dont know if this is normal as I generally don't check as he has been perfectly healthy, the PH out the tap is about 7.4/7.6.

I shall try and get a picture tomorrow but I do have half a bottle of PraziPro if needed.

Thanks for all the info Shakaho much appreciated


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  • Regular Member

I have started on the Prazi and salt program but a new development, he seems to have trouble staying horizontal when swimming is this still what you thought, gill flukes?

The gills don't seem inflamed or abnormal but couldn't get a decent picture


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  • Helper

Corkscrew swimming has been bad news in my fish in the past. They were not, however, goldfish. Big hugs while you wait for expert advice and I hope your comet feels better soon :(

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  • Supporter

A.M is correct, corkscrew swimming is usually a neurological symptom and irreversible.. however, something doesn't appear right with the fish. i notice no movement from it's left pectoral fin. like paralysis. i think whatever has come to this fish suddenly, may be from injury.


if the fish was flashing and showing symptoms of flukes, it is not uncommon, especially from the speed of a single tail, that they hit the walls/ornaments quite hard and cause themselves to be injured.

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