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Fish Are Biting


Skimmy

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I have a 20 gallon tank with a telescope, black moore, and generic goldfish in it. Recently, the black moore and regular goldfish has been chasing the telescope around (who is the biggest) and nipping at his body. They mostly try to get to, and bite at his butt, although they will nip any spot they can get to. The telescope just tries to swim away from them. I posted on here a few months ago when the black moore had attacked the telescope and left his fins tattered to the point that he could barely swim. I used a tank divider for about 3-4 months and they have been peaceful ever since I took it down (they had also been peaceful together for almost a year before the attack).

This time his fins are fine, I can't see any physical damage, all scales intact, ect. The water levels are fine, I'm feeding them normally, and there is absolutely no abnormal behavior other than the nipping. And when I say bite his butt, I mean I'll see him frantically swimming with the little goldfish almost completely buried in between his tail fins swimming along with him. I'm hoping someone can at least explain to me why this might happen. As much as I don't see any damage, the telescope most certainly isn't enjoying it. Thanks in advance.

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The tank is too small for three goldfish...

You need to buy a bigger tank and that should stop the problem! :)

Edited by Sushi13
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I was afraid someone would say that. Here they are in the tank:

fishtankf.jpg

Is that really cramped enough that two of the fish would find reason to gang up on the third (while not attacking each other) and keep it up for an entire day? I really don't have enough money or space for a bigger tank. I just find it odd that one fish is peaceful and the other two choose to attack that one. Makes me think there's something about that one fish that is attracting the other two.

That's not to say I'm not accepting the advice, I know a bigger tank could only help. I sort of gained the possession of the third fish (generic goldfish) by accident about 6 months ago. I never really planned on getting him, but it ended up being my care or death for the poor little guy.

Anything else I could possibly consider? :-\

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Yes, your tank is currently overstocked. Just keep an eye on your water quality for now. Your single tailed goldfish will need at least 20 gallons of space alone, so he may do better in a pond one day. Or, upgrade to a 40 gallon when you can. :)

Anyway, it sounds like your fish are trying to breed, this would explain the two against one behavior. Looks like you have two males and one female. My male oranda does this exact behavior to my female oranda every few days. Head butting, nipping, and smashing her into the tank walls. A tank divider might be useful. For now I would recommend keeping an eye on them and watch for any damage.

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I agree - breeding behavior and this gets more aggressive the tighter the space. You can slowly reduce the temp to "cool off" the two males, this can help. Otherwise you may need to separate the female who may get overwhelmed and sick if it continues and she has no place to avoid them..

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Ok, I didn't even think about that, I do have an outdoor pond. It's a shame it's winter and the pond is frozen over or I'd consider putting the single tail in there now. I'll try to find a 10 gallon to move the girl into. I think a friend has one. Thanks for the advice.

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