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Sick Goldie, Need Your Valued Help Please


rob123

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Hello again all,

this site and several of its members are my savours whenever a problem with my beloved goldies occur,

I have a 125L tank, 2 x filter systems, one water top and one large cylinder filtier, 2 x air stones, 2 x plants 1x large wood

ph 7.2 ish, no2 no3 no4 all on or very close to 0

overall the tank looks quite healthy, do 100% water changes round every 6-8 weeks, and 50% water changes around every 7-10 days,

wash filters in tank water etc, ive got it down pretty good after much help from you all over the past,

i have 2 large goldies around 10-12 cm long head to tail tip, 4 tiny 3cm goldies look very similiar to feeders size but are goldies colours

4 x small snails, 1 x catfish around 3cm from what ive been told hes an albino version, and a sucker fish also 2-3cm

its not crowded they seem stress free etc.

i feed the 2 x a day small amounts.

ive had the tank for over 10 yrs and the 2 larger goldies for oround 4+ yrs

My problkem is with one of the large goldies, overall he looks healthy, tail is firm and not stringy, no rott, his colours and scales are clear and firm no spots etc,

his eyes are slightly and i mean slightly cloudy but im not sure if that is just him or has happened recently,

he seems to be sitting at the bottom of the tank 95% of the time, only really moving when feed time, and then he doesnt seem to eat anywhere the same amount as he used to,

only feeding on the bottom now,

when he sits there his fins are down and not perky like the others even when he swims hes no where near as fast as he used to be,

from what i can see he hasnt lost his balance he sits at bottom dead straight, but when he swims hes on an angle to one side, favouring his left side fins,

i honestly think his right side arm fin does not seem to be working, he isnt using it at all and i think hes hurt it, this is what i think the balance issue is im sure of it,

as hes not floating around or upside down etc to th top,

its only when he chases foor or move he is angled but if you watch him, its cause of his inablility to use his right fin!!!

im located in australia and at the moment we are having a very unusually cold winter, i thought originally that they may become a bit more lazy due to a water temp drop,

but i dont think this now,

HELP ME PLEASEEEE

thanks all.

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Hiya -- Sorry that you are having problems with your fish.

If you've been around here for a while, you are probably aware that your tank is significantly overstocked. 125 liters is approximately 33 gallons. Your two large common goldfish really require 20-30 gallons each in order to be healthy and this does not take into account your four smaller fish (10 gallons needed each), four snails (at least a couple of gallons needed each), your catfish and your pleco (10-15 gallons needed each). Although it may not look that way to you, your tank is much too crowded.

Even if your ammonia and nitrite are zero, crowding is still a very severe source of stress. Is your nitrate really zero? Are you using nitrate-removing filter media or is this measurement right after a 100% water change? Is your nitrate test fresh? Are you shaking the reagent and the test tube for the specified period of time?

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just checked again, ammonia seems to be around 1. mark.

as for overcrowding ive had this tank in operation for over 12 years, i recently had a goldie die that was around the 8-9yr old mark, and several others pass on that were around the 5 yr mark,

ive had more healthy goldies in this tank operating great for years and years, growing to large sizes, than i currently do now...

when i explained the fish i may not of went into the best depth the 4 other goldies are the size of feeder fish, im talking half the width and lenght of my pinky finger, ive had these for over 4 months

and they have not grown hardly at all, they may not be named goldies but they are compatible from several aquarium enquiries, and yes i know they dont tell the truth always also :(

i just wanted to clear that up,

now the ammonia is up a bit, on 2nd check around 1.0 mark may be slightly higher whats the best way to get it down, i have ammonia rocks, but ive been told not to put them in the main tank filters to get ammonia down, only in med tanks,

is the easiest way to get it down reg 75% water changes????

all of this aside, he seems to not be using his fin, which is what im thinking this may be, as all of the others are acting normal?????

thanks for your help acupunk :)

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Kristen is completely right, you are very overstocked right now. I know it may seem hard to believe, especially with an established tank, where you've had good luck with your fish for many, many years... but, as it stands, you have too many fish for your tank, regardless of how small some of them are. Honestly, the little ones may not be growing because they really do not have room to do so.

I would strongly recommend to increase your water changes to atleast twice per week, as well as increase the amount of water you are taking out each time. I too am curious why you do not have any nitrate readings... I would agree, you should not use the Ammonia Chips at this time (or ever), because they rob your cycle of Ammonia and will essentially be more harm than good.

You mentioned you recently lost a few fish you had for years, what was the symptoms of these fish before they died? How many fish (recently) did you have in this tank?

Edited by Desiree
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my several larger fish i have lost over the last 2-4 yrs .... not all at once, seperately....

whether or not my tank is overstocked in your opinion, thats not why im here, im not going to flush my guys down the toilet, so whats done is done, there hear to stay,

your all ripping me to part, but i know im not doing to bad if ive had goldfish to live to that age,

im not here to argue, im here to find help,

so your suggesting 2 x a week water changes until i can get the ammonia back down to normal levels? should i increase these to 75% or 100% changes???

what about the issue with my larger goldy???? bottom lurking and not having as much appetite as normal,

his right middle fin is what im saying he seems to not be using at all over the last week, it seems though hes hurt it?

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I'm really sorry if you think I was ripping you apart. Please understand that is not my intention. Also, please realize no one is suggesting you flush your fish down the toilet, I would never, ever suggest such a thing. The only reason why being overstocked was brought up is because it effects your water quality. Having that many fish is going to effect the efficiency of the tank and ultimately, your filter can't keep up with the amount of waste being secreted by your fish.

With water quality being less than perfect, it will be toxic in the event you need to add medications for your sick fish. With that said, I do believe you should increase your water changes, a minimum of 50%, to at least twice per week. I think that will help get the cycle under control so you will be able to treat your fish, if needed.

As for your fish not using his fin, do you have anything in the tank that he could have been injured on? As mentioned before, you stated you have had fish pass away in the past. I apologize if I misread your post about this. But, I do think it is important to know what occurred with your fish whom recently passed away. Bottom sitting could mean parasites, which are very contagious.

I am confident someone with more information/ experience will come along to assist you. Again, I apologize if anything in my post had offended you in any way.

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no no, its ok, im not angry with you or taken offence i just wanted to clear everything up, please dont apologise i didnt mean it like that. its ok :)

i have a very large peice of drift wood thats been in there for years and 2 x aquarium plants, purple and green large leaves,

as for my others from memory the last of my larger guys died around a year ago from a very large cyst on him, he was nearly 10

ok i can manage 2 x 50% water changes a week no probs,

i do have 2 filters combined they turn the tank over quite fast.

any other ideas,

he just seems to sit there and its as if the other guys go up to him and sit with him on occasion to keep him company or can sence somethings wrong with him?

seems to be he cant use this fin for some reason, but theres no damage or colour change to it? im puzzled all help appreciated... thanks again...

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Hi rob and welcome back!

Rob, your tank is overstocked. You are showing ammonia, which should be zero. I think we have gone over all of this where your fish can go for a very long time in poor conditions. That doesn't mean they are thriving...they are just surviving. It just takes one small thing to set the domino effect off and all or most of your fish will become ill. You cannot treat ill fish in an overstocked tank that is showing ammonia readings, and you are not going to be able to keep these readings down in an overstocked tank. Do you see the vicious cycle?

A 10 year old fish with a bacterial cyst will tell you that your water quality and housing conditions are poor for your fish. This doesn't have to be a permanent thing. You could get another tank and split the fish up. You could also get a Rubbermaid container and use it for a spare tank. Many of us have done this.

Its not our OPINION that your tank is overstocked. It is a proven biological fact.

You mentioned a "sucker fish". Is this a pleco? Plecos are not good tankmates for goldies. I'm sure you've seen posts here stating that they acquire a taste for goldfish slimecoat and will attack them at night, as they are nocturnal fish. If its not a pleco, then it is a tropical fish that shouldn't be with goldfish.

You asked for help rob, and we are trying to help you as we did before. If you would answer all of the questions you can in the above box, we could help you more. In the meantime, you are going to need to do large water changes daily, ph and temp matched to get the ammonia down to zero and keep it there. By large changes I mean 50-75%, and do a thorough vacuuming of your gravel.

Doing this is of course up to you.

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Hi all,

im back again,

ive been doind daily changes and sticking to everything youve suggested, the ammonia and nitrates are all at 0 from my last test, so i hope thats better news,

but as for the dilemma with my sick goldie, ive been watching him to try and see if anything is annoying or trying to eat or bite him etc and ive just seen him swim

to the top in front of me and he has around 3 red patches on his underbelly they look sore and are defintely not on him normally, im glad ive seen something to

show there is a problem but i dont know what to do now or to diagnose it, just remember im in Australia and our meds or pet/vets dont have a great deal of meds available to us like in the states....

he needs your help please.

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Glad to hear your water parameters are stabilizing. If possible, can you please post your complete parameters; Ammonia, Nitrites, Nitrates, & PH? Also, if you could post a picture or two of the red patches you have described, I think that may be helpful in terms of diagnosis. I just want to make sure we're all on the same page right now. Your fish's symptoms are: clamped fins, bottom sitting, loss of appetite, and red patches; right? Am I missing anything? :)

Also, as Vickie asked, you mention a sucker fish, is this a pleco? If so, there is a very big possibility this could be the cause of the red patches on your fish. Pleco's really like to suck the slime coat of goldfish. They seem really nice and peaceful when their small, but as the get older they start to do this. I have had this happen on two separate occasions with plecos, once they reached about 5-6 inches. Do you have another tank where you can house your pleco? (Just an idea)...

There are moderators here that are in the UK and Australia, and are very familiar with the medications available. I am confident one of them will help you as soon as they can. :)

Edited by Desiree
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thanks desiree.

ok i cannot give you exact numbers as ive got the ammonia tester and the seperate ph tester and a strip tester which covers all the nitrates gh etc.

the ph is on 7.2ish ammonia is on the yellow marking on card which is 0 and for the seperate strip tester it shows the others to be 0

ive managed to take photos of the sucker fish and the possible plecko youve asked about so you can know for sure the types,

ive managed to take a photo of my sick goldie in my hand to show the sores, but he jumped out of my hand and landed on the slate floor, it was like a 2 foot drop and im feeling really bad about it,

i put him back in straight away and his gills were going very fast and he seemed scared, i hope i havent hurt him..

im trying to work out how to display pics can you tell me how to post them up asap thankagain...

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ok ive found a small feature tank i forgot i had, ive now seperated the 3 smaller feeding fish and the sucker fish, all thats left now is the 2 large goldies in tank,

hes settled somewhat now and i really want to get his sores medicated ive got the pics ready to go can you help me identify i dont know how to post them up?

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Rob,

Go to photobucket.com. It's the site that pics can be uploaded to and then displayed here very easily. Just watch your upload pic size. Choose that BEFORE you upload the pic. (In case you were wondering, yes I did have to learn the hard way. :) )

I'm not going to give med advice or anything like that, just a really short story.

When I came here the first time, I had a very sick and dying GF. He's 10 years old and I have had him the entire time in the worst possible conditions and he never got sick... until 3 months ago. Fact: GF can live up to 40 years under excellent conditions. If you think about that in human years, most GF die as children, many in their 20's to 40's, some in their 60's and few live to the ripe old age of 80.

My GF has a lump on his chin. Had the red blotches too. It may be an internal bacterial infection or similar. I will let a MOD answer that part.

My point is that these guys know what they are doing. Just because a GF lasts for years in substandard conditions does not mean that they can last past their "childhood". Like humans, as they age, they become less tolerant of poor conditions and can become deathly ill at the drop of a dime. If you were a prisoner in a place that wasn't kind to prisoners... you could survive for a while especially if you have a strong will to survive... but your whole life like that? Hmmm. Just a thought.

Good luck with your fish.

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Hello again! Glad to hear you were able to split up the fish. One thing I'm curious about... based on your readings, your nitrates are at 0, is this right after a water change? Usually nitrates will build fairly quickly and are okay up to 20-40 ppm. Just curious.

On another note, any luck getting the pictures uploaded? Let us know if you need more guidance with that.

How is your fish doing as of now? I hope he is okay after the fall. I've had that happen too, and I think it is the scariest/ saddest experience. I'm not an expert regarding medications, especially in Australia, but it may be best to salt the water at the tonic dose for now. I will read into this and confirm-- or maybe others can offer suggestions as well.

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hi everyone, thanks all for your help,

i just cant win, ive taken all the pics and now i cannot load them onto anywhere as the digital camera is too high in megapixels and the pictures are to high in megs...!!!!!!!!

ahhh,

ok update they have all been seperated as said, now i got my sick guy in a seperate 20L med tank,

i took the photos to my local fish vet yesterday Finland at tuggerah, shes a marine biologist with a large store, ive treated his tank with vibravet doxycycline tabs, im not the best with names but it says on the prescription,

treatment for aeromonas, im pretty sure she said it was a bacteria infection, i cant remember 100%, but shes been great help to me in the past,

ive got my fingers crossed now, i know he can do it.

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ohh and that info about their lifespan is amazing, ive never known of a fish to live anywhere close to that,

a gold fish that age must grow to quite a size, sorry for my lack of knowledge if i came across like that, i wasnt trying to..

and desiree, i cannot give an exact nitrate and nitrite reading as i only have ammonia test kit and ph tes kit, the way im guaging nitrates. nittrites etc is from a drop sheet that you put in water for one second and it changes colour to suit chart, it seems very close to 0???

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hi everyone, thanks all for your help,

i just cant win, ive taken all the pics and now i cannot load them onto anywhere as the digital camera is too high in megapixels and the pictures are to high in megs...!!!!!!!!

Try re-sizing the images on your computer prior to uploading them onto Photobucket. :)

Also, glad to hear you got some antibiotics, is this a medication you add to the water or medicated food? Remember, to keep the water quality as close to perfect as possible while treating.

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I think it would be a very good idea to get yourself some new dropper testers for PH ammonia, nitrite, nitrate.

From your readings I think that your kits are sounding maybe a little old and inaccurate. Strips are super unreliable as they can be affected by humidity and start to give off readings.

Knowing your water chemistry is the BASIS of being able to diagnose and help your fish, so it's very important to have a proper kit.

In such an established and overstocked tank, the likelyhood of nitrates being zero is small. Unless the cycle has crashed. So, I'd want a complete set of results from a new and reliable kit.

It sounds from reading this thread as if recapping on some basics would be very helpful to you. Click on the links below my sig for more info. Also go to 'research' and read the piece written by Trinket describing the effects of stress on fish. These pieces will help you.

Your fish does sound to have a bacterial infection (usually caused by a build up of harmful bacteria in stressed, overcrowded conditions) and I think medicated food will be more effective than putting meds into the water. I'm not certain what is available in Oz but we do have a couple of MOds over there who may be able to help.

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