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sould

Goldfish Floating Nose Down In Gravel

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My two year old goldie is sitting nose down, back fins up (vertical). He seems to be constantly chewing something. Now he's sometimes floating in the middle, but seems to be sinking and is using only one of his side fins to keep afloat. What could this be?!!!!!!!!!!

Params:

Ammonia, Nitrite = 0 Nitrate = 10

pH 7.2

Chlorine 0

KH 120

GH 150

29 gals, approx 7 months running (before I moved, running for a year). Two Whisper 40 filters.

25%-30% water change 1 time per week, changed 30% yesterday

2 goldfish, the one in question 3 inches... and a smaller 1 inch with no symptoms.

No additives yet

No new fish, plants, or snails within past 6 months

Fed Omega flakes/pellets/fruits/veggies/blood worms

Edited by sould

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Do you have gravel in your tank? Check inside his mouth and see if anything's stuck in there. If so, gently take him in your hand and use a pair of tweezers to try and get it out.

edit...I just reread your topic title and realized...yes you have gravel

Edited by Chrissy_Bee

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There is nothing in there that I can see. My gravel is pretty large, so he would have a hard time (I think) getting it in his mouth unless he found a fragment.

I have snails in the tank too... sometimes he eats them. Maybe he got a shell fragment lodged in there? That doesn't really explain the sinking though...

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was he ever treated for flukes or other parasites before?

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No, he has never been ill before. He's laying on top of one of my artificial plants right now. It's not looking good...

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I wonder if it is either some snail fragments he is dealing with, or maybe flukes. Do you have an airstone in the tank? If he has a hard time taking oxygen in (gill flukes will do that), then he doesn?t have enough energy to keep himself swimming, and he just rests. Or it could be just some little thing bugging him, like the snail fragments maybe.

I would start salting the tank, and see if he perks up a bit. The salt doesn?t do much to flukes, but if he is just stressed from something minor, that might help him. And it doesn?t upset the good bugs in the filtration system. Use rock or aquarium salt, not cooking salt. One teaspoon per gl of water, and dissolve it in a cup of tank water first, then pour it in the tank, away from the fish. No symptoms on the other one, yes? :)

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There is an airstone. Maybe I should add another one...

The other goldie is fine and acting perfectly normal. Sick goldie seems like he's breathing kind of shallow and slow. He's been sitting on the bottom in the same place since midnight last night. I added a tbs. of salt last night and am thinking about another one.

Is the only way to treat flukes with chemicals?

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Yes, unfortunately. Flukes only respond to medication. They are salt resistant. Prazi is the best choice. It is safe to your fish and to the BBs in your filter.

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I just got home from work and (unbelievably) he is now swimming around semi-normally. I only added 2 tbs of salt to the tank. It seems from time to time that he is still head heavy and goes into a slight tilt. His little buddy seems so happy that he's up and about... they're swimming circles around each other. :) Last night the little one was sleeping under his tail. It was adorable and yet extremely depressing... I was so sure he wasn't going to make it through the night.

Could it still be flukes? Should I treat the tank anyway? Maybe I should fast them for a couple of days? Peas? Could it be some odd constipation? I've never experienced anything like this with my goldies before.

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That is good news! A little salt can often help perk fish up.

Perhaps he ate something bad. A bloodworm or old piece of food in the tank and it made him gassy for a while.

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