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Help! Something's Wrong With My Ryukin!


Guest RyukinSamurai

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Guest RyukinSamurai

Help! Somethings been up with my Ryukin. I have a 10 gallon tank with an Aqua-Tech filter made by Regent. I bought the tank and filter from nooppee.

I last tested the Ammonia a month or two ago, but then the vial used for testing broke and I was unable to find a replacement. At that time the ammonia was 1 ppm.

I water change once or twice weekly about 3 gallons.

There are five fish total. The other four fish look fine. However, the first Ryukin I got has some white clearish patches of color on the tail. It looks natural, but I'm not sure. The other Ryukin has them too.

What I'm concerned about is the second Ryukin, Copper. He (? or she) has a white clearish looking patch on his head. Copper's scales are turning pale and white. The scales and dorsal fin were orange before that and the dorsal fin is now pure white.

I've switched foods several times. Before I found this site, I used TOP FIN goldfish flakes, then switched to Bio-Blend for goldfish. When I switched to Bio-Blend, Copper developed odd red streaks that looked like blood. We put it in a very big plastic tub with no cover, but he never jumped out so I guess its OK. We don't have a hospital tank, because we can't afford it and I have to buy everything with my own money. ( I also have to support two parakeets, but they're worth it. I want to keep the goldfish alive too. :unsure: Or do I? Nah, just kidding )

Now I am using Omega One pellets. I soak the pellets maybe 5% of the time. :huh:

The red streaks disappeared by itself and none of the other fish developed anything. This was 5 months ago.

Please tell me what it wrong with Copper, I really don't know!

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Hi Ryukinsamurai, and welcome to Koko's. :)

The main problem you have is too many fish in too small a tank, which I suspect has made the water quality is very poor. Goldfish are exceptionally messy fish which produce a LOT of ammonia, and therefore they really need at least 10 gallons of water space each. Five fish should therefore ideally be in a 50-gallon tank, at the barest minimum (my five are in a 90 gallon). They also need plenty of space to grow; GF can easily reach between 6 and 12" long, but in overcrowded conditions their growth becomes stunted and their immunity to disease is greatly reduced.

That said, the symptoms you are describing actually sound mostly like normal colouration changes to me (aside from the red streaks, which we'll get to in a minute). It is not at all unusual for goldfish to turn from red to white - or indeed white to red! - as they get older. Their fancy colours have been bred into them and therefore are not very stable. These changes are nothing to worry about. :)

However, the red streaks are another matter: those are symptomatic of a bacterial infection. This type of infection is almost always the result of poor water quality. Fortunately, the fish seems to have fought off the infection, but in overcrowded conditions I am afraid it will keep returning.

You also need to test ammonia, nitrite, nitrate and pH regularly - at least once a week. Those tests are the only way of knowing for sure how good your water actually is. And you need to increase the amount and frequency of your water changes - about 30-50% weekly is ideal for goldfish - in order to maintain considtently clean water. You would be surprised how quickly the wastes build up.

As for food, GF need a balanced and varied diet; I would feed a couple of different varities of dry food, and also some gelled or frozen live foods too. Peas, lightly cooked, de-skinned and mushed, are also a great treat for goldfish and very good for them. :)

Is a larger tank and some test kits an option for you? If not, it might be better to re-home 4 of your 5 fish either with a local pet store or with a friend who has space in their tanks, and just keep one fish in your 10-gallon.

Hope this helps. :)

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Hi RyukinSamari, I think Copper may just be going through a natural change of colour. This sort of thing occurs all the time.

Most members here would recommend that goldfish need 10g each, at a pinch small goldfish can get buy short term in 5g each.

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Guest RyukinSamurai

Okay, thanks so much! That sure is assuring about Copper!

I'll just try and do laundry whenever I can to earn some extra money. ;)

Do you mind answering a few questions?

There is a lot of brown gunk on the side of my fish tank. Is that poo or something or is it beneficial bacteria? I wipe it off sometimes since it makes it harder to observe the fish, but it keeps coming back. Is it something I should be worried about?

Is my filter good enough? Is the brand alright, or should I get a more efficient one?

Guess I'll buy a 20 gallon and split up my fish. They do like rather nice swimming together though since they're different varieties, though. :) (3 comets, 2 Ryukins)Oh, well, it's for the greater good. Hee.

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I'm not familiar with your brand of filter but I live on the other side of the world from you. :D

What type of filter is it? An internal power filter? A hang-over-back (hob) filter? What do you use inside the filter? It should say somewhere on it how many gallons/litres of water per hour it processes, that's important.

The brown gunk sounds like brown algae. It is a pain because it will keep coming back and all you can do is keep wiping it off. It is not harmful to the fish but it's not beneficial either.

Any tank upsize is a good step but bear in mind that your optimum would be between 50g and 80g's. Comets can grow extra large, so often people allow 20g each for comets. :o I know.

If possible shop around because if you go to a sale you can often get a 30g for the price of a 20g. You could put your comets in there for the time being.

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Guest RyukinSamurai

Well, the filter uses carbon and the filter cartridge is made of polyfiber and its double thick. It hangs on the outside and it has this little tube thingy that descends into the tank and sucks up water and poo and whatever. Then the water get sucked through the filter catridge and poors out over this little open spout into the tank.

Um, I found something new on Copper. There's this reddish patch that sort of looks like a sore above his gill. And the top of his head looks cloudy and sort of transparent like.

I had a previous fish before Copper which was a Fantail named Peppermint. Peppermint and Tangerine (Tangerine is my first Ryukin and still alive today) were the first fish I had before Copper and the comets. But my dad went and dropped a little piece of cereal in there and Peppermint just had to go and eat it. :blink: She started getting lethargic and wouldn't eat and started turning thin and transparent like and just lay on the bottom of the tank in the corner. Tangerine was perfectly fine and happy. It wasn't until Peppermint died that my dad finally confessed. :blink:

Copper's head looks cloudy and transparentish and Peppermint looked transparent too before she died. Could this be related or did Peppermint really die from cereal???

Sorry about all these questions, it's just that I'm really worried about Copper and I'm just curious about improving my goldfishes quality of life.

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The most common explaination for the red sore you describe would be a bacterial ulcer, it could also be related to parasites. The transparent covering on the head could be excess slime coat, a natural immune response to infection.

As for Peppermint, fish can become ill from the wrong foods, it is possible that the cereal make her sick.

Your filter is a hob (hang over the back) type filtration. If you are seriously thinking of upgrading your tank size leave this filter for the time being. It would be suitable for one or two small fish in the 10g but there is no way it can cope with 5. Any filter large enough to cope with the 5 fish would create a whirlpool of water current in the 10g.

Try to change the filter cartridge as little as possible. Each time you put a new one in there your tank will go through a mini-cycle while the filter grows new bacteria. Rinse you filter cartridge once a week in a bucket of used tank water. Give it a good swish around to get rid of as much muck as possible. Also if there is room to add any bioballs or other filter pads that would be a good idea. Sometimes though filter will overflow if it is too crowded.

It is great that you change around 3g of water once or twice weekly. I'm going to suggest that you go even further. If you could change 2 gallons of water daily or every second day that help maintain your water quality.

I am going to suggest a salt treatment for now. I recommend a concentration of .3% for one week and see how Copper is after that. A .3% concentration of salt will kill most parasites and is also an anti-bacterial treatment.

Here is how to do it. One the first day dissolve 2 tablespoons of salt in a bucket of water then add it to the tank during a water change. This will give you a concentration of .1%. Over the next 2 days repeat this proceedure to give you a .3% concentration.

Still continue the daily or (every second day) water changes and remember to replace the salt that take out during water changes. To replace a .3% concentration for 2 gallons of water use 6 small teaspoons of salt.

You can use aquarium salt (follow the dosage and repeat x 2) or sea salt, rock salt, kosher salt available at your supermarket.

Hope Copper gets well soon.

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Guest RyukinSamurai

Oh, ok. I'll try that.

Two tablespoons sounds like alot, but I dunno. :huh:

Will it matter if I add water conditioner to the bucket of water? I use Wardley Chlor Out whenever I add new water to the tank.

Also if Copper doesn't end up having any kind of parasite or infection will the salt hurt him or any other of my goldfish?

Just want to double check. Thanks fishmerised and emmahj for your help!

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:) Hi, how long has your tank been running,and how long have you kept 5 fish in it? Do you have the other testing kits besides the ammonia one? I think that if you don't,that you really need to make a purchase of a Master Test kit that cover's Ammonia/Nitrites/NitrAtes,etc. Because your tank is so overstocked,you will have to work extra hard to keep your fish healthy,which means stepping up on your Water changes.I also think that Poor Water Quality is definately causing all your problems. You'll need to be able to test your water at least once a week,to know the appropiate amount of water that you need to change out.You may even have to do water changes more than once a week.The salt will help your fish feel better,but if you don't take care of the Water Quality,your problems will not go away-in fact they are sure to become worse. :( You can add the Water Conditioner to the new bucket of Water-that's fine.Salt will not hurt your fish -even if he doesn't have Parasites,etc. ,just remember that Salt does not evaporate out of the water,and that overdosing Salt can lead to problems.Make sure that if you do use the Salt,that you dissolve it in some tank water before you add it to your Aquarium.
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Salt wont hurt your other fishies. A higher concentration of .3% may make them go a bit floaty (a bit of balance problem) but not necessarily. That's why I recommend dosing in 3 installments to reach the .3%, a dose of .1% is just a general tonic, won't harm your fish at all, it's good for them.

If you do have any issues like that concerning the salt please post back.

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