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Moping Goldfish?

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Guest seagods

First off, about five years ago, our daughter turned up with a goldfish in a bag: a birthday present.

Guess who had to look after it? My wife mostly, and myself sometimes. So, on purchasing an "emergency

tank" and a quick crash course on goldfish, the fish was fine.

Until about a week ago it was in its tank on a shelf by by the window (out of direct sunlight but well lit anyway).

It would alternately rise up and nibble the plants, explore the gravel for food, swim about a bit, and rest. It got excited

before feeding time, and swam to greet the feeder! However, it was outgrowing the tank.

We got a much bigger aquarium + filter and thingy to oxygenate the water+ some stuff called cycle. We ran it two weeks

before moving the fish to the new tank. This was now on the floor in a safe and fairly dark place. Naturally, it was stressed a

bit by the move. However it soon soon calmed down. When we switched the aquarium light on, it freaked completely!

We switched it off, after which it "sat in the corner" with its face to the wall for days. It did occasionally start doing frantic

lengths along one side of the tank, but mostly sat on the gravel with its face to the corner. It showed no interest in food at all.

Reading around, I realised it should have the light on after all. OK, it freaked again, but did settle down after a few minutes.

Now, it rises away from the gravel, to mid tank or higher. It still tends to stay at one end of the tank most of the time. It does its

lengths still, but sometimes explores a bit more calmly. It still shows no interest in searching for any food. It looks normal, and

"breathes" normally. Sometimes it appears to attack one side of the tank (the one it swims fast lengths on).

I don't think there is anything wrong with the water, the gravel is half from the old tank. So I wonder what to do.

1. If it is the water, how do I find what is wrong.

2. Is it ill?

3. Does it have an imaginary rival, and won't eat till it goes away. (The old tank was plastic with slightly curved surfaces, the new is glass

with flat surfaces).

My wife loves the little thing, so I am at my wits end on finding out what to do.

Thanks for your attention,


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  • Regular Member

:welcome This should probably be moved to Diseases Diagnosis and Treatment. Not saying that your goldfish is sick with something, but there, we ask questions that will help us to better assess the problem. When it's moved, there will be questions that you will be asked to answer. The better you can answer the questions, the more help we can provide. If you go ahead and try to answer them now, we can get this going a bit faster. I'm fairly knowledgeable in general care of goldfish and can identify a good amount of sicknesses/diseases, but I'm still learning all the ins and outs of medications, so a Moderator will be a much better person to give advice as far as that goes. But, we will all try to help as much as we can and at least lend our support. So, here are the questions that you will be asked to answer.

[*]Ammonia Level?

[*]Nitrite Level?

[*]Nitrate level?

[*]Ph Level of tank? (If possible,KH and GH and chloramines)?

[*]Ph Level (KH/GH) out of the Tap?

[*]Brand of test-kit used? (strips or drops?)

[*]Tank size (How many Gals) and How long has it been running?

[*]What is the name and size of the filter/s?

[*]How often do you change the water and how much?

[*]How many fish in the tank and their size?

[*]What kind of water additives or conditioners?

[*]Any medications added to the tank?

[*]Add any new fish to the tank?

[*]What do you feed your fish?

[*]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.?

1. If it is the water, how do I find what is wrong.

You need to use drop test kits for ammonia, nitrites, nitrates and ph. Gh and Kh too if you can afford to buy those tests.

2. Is it ill?

It's too early to make that determination yet.

3. Does it have an imaginary rival, and won't eat till it goes away. (The old tank was plastic with slightly curved surfaces, the new is glass

with flat surfaces).

It is possible that it is stressed out by its new environment. Goldfish stress fairly easily and will take some time to get used to new surroundings.

Edited by lynda441
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Well, it sounds like New Tank Syndrome is the problem. If you put the fish into a completely new tank and used a new filter, then there will not yet be a colony of beneficial bacteria to break down it's waste. Are you familliar with the nitrogen cycle? If not check out the links below my signature.

You need to tell us your water readings (amm, nitrite, nitrate and PH) and immediately do a very large water change. Aim at 75% and try to match the temperature as best you can.

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