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  • Regular Member

hey everyone!

i have 2 4-5inch goldfish. one is a red telescope (oscar) and another is a redcap oranda (einsein). I have had them together in a tank for about 5 months. they are aways together and sleep side by side. this was always very peaceful and sweet to watch. today however i woke up to find einstein racing behind oscar (poor oscar might need a name change) and sticking his face under oscars tail and fins and smashing him(her) against the glass!!! what should i do!?!?! its a bare tank - no substrate and no decorations.

i have been having health issues with oscar lately as well as cycle crashes and dont really want einstein to beat him up! is this bullying or breeding behaviour? since einstein is white i have never really noticed any breeding stars on him. what should i do? i have only had goldfish for 6 months now and am a bit lost!

thanks everyone

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  • Regular Member

Ok, I was asking because sometimes you will see bullying behaviour if big fish are in too small of a space, but 40 gallons is not cramped for 2 fish.

It does indeed sound like possible breeding behaviour. Have you tried to look at their vents to sex them?

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  • Regular Member

i have been checking that today and it does seem like oscar could be a girl (!!!) what should i do if they lay eggs??? i feel bad watching them cause oscar is just letting himself (cant get my head around to him being a girl) be smashed around and he isnt even fighting back.... i have a 3rd 1inch black moor in there and he is just going about his business

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  • Regular Member

so after some close inspection - turns out my white oranda has breeding stars! could he be just chasing her or would he only do that if she has eggs? cause oscar doesnt really look any fatter... i did set up a hospital tank should it be needed... if oscar does have eggs how long does the spawning usually take? i put it a fluffy plant just incase

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  • Regular Member

If the behavior gets really bad, you can separate the fish. I recommend using a different tank just to be on the safe side.

Otherwise, if they lay eggs you can either keep them, or not. If you want to keep them, put plastic plants/grass/spawning mop in the tank to catch most of the eggs and transfer them to a different tank.

If you don't want to keep them, let the parent's (and innocent bystander is sounds like) have a feast for a few hours, then syphon them all up and do a HUGE water change. :)

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  • Regular Member

i guess i would keep the eggs and see how that goes! if i dont separate them how long could this last?

just another thing - can i leave the filters on or will they suck up the eggs?

Edited by ryukin girl
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  • Regular Member

Definitely keep the filters on. Otherwise your water will go septic FAST.

Some fish will lay eggs for weeks. I am not experienced on this, but if you do a search on the forum you should be able to find out TONS of information. :)

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  • Regular Member

A neat and tricky way to spot breeding stars on white fish or very YOUNG males is to use a flashlight. If you shine the flashlight at an angle along the fishes gill plates, any breeding stars there will refect. :)

If your female (Oscar?) is REALLY getting torn up, you can float her in a colonder or plastic basket. This will allow the water free flow through to her, yet keep her from the over zealous actions of the male. It will ALSO allow him to fertilize any eggs she does happen to lay - for the milt is released into the water - and goes EVERYWHERE.

HAving the male bump her will help her to drop eggs, but some males are just too eager.... (Mine always seem to be sooooo laid back and uncaring. They usually get the job done, though).

She will most likely drop eggs for several days, wait a week and drop again. They are MESSY and create a LOT of waste in the tank as the fish eat them. Watch your water parameters!

(Weather and water changes have a lot to do with drop times. We are setting up for a monster storm - it has been in the 50s and 60s (F) for days now and tonight/tomorrow we have a snow storm blowing in. The air pressure is playing games and my fish are dropping eggs right and left. My Bubbleeye are at it again and the Phoenix are spraying clouds of them all over their tank!)

If you DO wish to raise some fry - great. But go into it armed with knowledge and equipment set up. Raising fry takes rather specific equipment and food as well as a WHOLE LOTTA time. They require fussing with almost every 4 hours in the beginning - without fair. Water parameters are HARD to manage, but must be managed. REgular filters cannot be used, etc.....

Yes - the filters will suck up the eggs. Many will stick to the intakes. You can simply pull the intake grates off the filter and drop them into the hatching tank, too. (Replace them so the adults do not get sucked in!)

In many ways, having a gravid female is a good thing. This means you are doing it RIGHT in keeping them. It is a rare fish that can consider breeding if the water is not kept properly. :)

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  • Regular Member

im really worried about poor oscar in a few hrs she has had her fins torn up pretty bad! how do i separate her with a basket? can i just put her in anything that has holes and fits in the tank? is it okey if i separate them? not like her eggs will remain stuck into her or anything?

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If she is not releasing, yet, you can help convince her by changing out a fair amount of water each day for a few days. An impending storm will change the air pressure and help her along, too. Keeping the lights on in the tank for 16-18 hours a day will also be good encourangement - and the male in the tank should do the final trick.

Just about any plastic basket or colonder will float - the kind with the slits in the sides and bottoms.... Check to make sure there is no sharp mold flashings left on the thing that could tear fins. Then float the basket in the tank and put the fish in the basket. The basket will float all over the tank surface - and the male fish will push it, too. She can be fed in there - drop the food in to her - the waste will drop out the slits and be processed by the filters. Her hormones will continue to be distrubuted in the tank - and get the males to convince her to drop. The basket, however, will prevent the males from actually getting TO her and injuring her further.

Separating the fish is fine - but you will need to make sure you send all the proper signals to the gravid female to drop. Lighting, air pressure, water changes, cooler water should do the trick. The males are just an added feature (aren't they usually!!! :rolleyes: )

Good luck. She should be fine in a few weeks with good water. :)

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  • Regular Member

thanx a lot daryl! i wanted to separate them and put the male in my hospital tank but it really seems just to be too small for him - its 10gallons and i usually just use it for my smaller fish. so for now i let them be. he seems to have calmed down a bit. i fed them a hearty meal of brine shrimp. i have been changing the water 2x a day since i was having cycle issues (probably from all this mess). i am leaving for the weekend and dont have a plastic colander at hand - will she be okey left with psycho male for 2 days? i will be doing water change tomorrow morning before i leave and one once i am back sunday night. (with the colander)

if she does lay eggs - what is the chance that he fertilize them? what exactly do you mean by 'care every 4 hours', certainly fish babies cant be more stress that ppl babies? (or am i wrong?! :doh11: ) what exactly would consist the care? i guess i would take out all the eggs but most wont make it, correct?

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new update. i ended up moving her in the 10gallon hospital tank for the night - the male just wasn't letting her rest and she seems totally out of energy - just letting herself be pushed around by the filter. i put her in the tank with powerful filter which hopefully will keep the water good until tomorrow morning. i also put the fluffy plant in there with her so she can rest on it. i feel really bad for her... i would have put the male in the smallest tank but he is just so full of energy!

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  • Regular Member

hey everyone! i have an update on penelope. So for the past 4-5 days she has been staying in a separate 20gallon tank with filter, airstone and a fluffy live plant. i have been doing 2x daily water changes and have added 0.2percent salt to help heal her torn fins. the tank water is 26C (is it too warm)?!?! she STILL hasn't dropped any eggs (i think) i would notice them right? they ARE bigger than grains of salt?! and they would stick to the plant right?

she is doing much better but she has gotten a bit more swollen - if i look closely i see her scales sticking out a TINY bit... how do i help her release her eggs? i wanted to try and put her in the colander in the larger tank - but would all the moving around stress her too much? otherwise i also read that having cooler night temps and warmer day temps helps - is this correct?

hope you guys can help poor penelope!

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Since there are about 100 reasons that your fish may be "fat" (or have a swollen belly that makes the scales stick out a bit), for every case where the fish simply is gravid with eggs, I think I would start looking into those reasons. It cannot hurt - fixing things will only make her drop eggs if that is what she has.

What are your water parameters? You say a "big filter", but the biggest filter will not keep the water in good parameters if it contains no beneficial bacteria to process the waste. The only thing that will do that is 100% water changes each and every day - and possibly Amquel or Prime added, too.

HAve you tested the water? Is there ammonia in the water? Even a "small" amount of ammonia can set off a whole cascade of problems in a fish. Ammonia toxicity, bacterial infections and parasites can all go hand in hand - and all can cause the symptoms you are describing.

Please post back..... we need to help your little fish.

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thanx daryl! i will test the water asap! however the filter is 800litre one and she is in a 80lit tank. i run this filter with the other main on in my large tank so its always cycled when i need a hospital tank. it has the ceramic things inside etc. but i will test all

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  • Regular Member

so getting back with the test results.

ammonia - 0

nitrite - 0

nitrate - 0 (is that possible? usually its 10)

temp - 24

pH in tank - 7,5

pH from tap 7 (can this difference be stressing her as i do 2x daily water changes?)

GH - 14

KH - 6,6

i have been doing the 2x daily water changes just because i feel she is so big in such a 'small' tank (its 20gallons).

still no eggs and she is more bloated today. however she has normal pooping going on.

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  • Regular Member

hey everyone,

so update. today i placed her in a large colander in the main tank. she has a bit of room to move around but can't really 'swim'. the male seems interested in her so we'll see what happens. i just hope she gets the egg out because she is pretty huge now! how long can i keep her in there like this? if she seems to get too stressed i will try and release her in the main tank and see how that goes...

any help/ ideas greatly welcome!

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  • Regular Member

update! i have let her out of the colander a few hours ago as she seemed to get restless - right away the male was all up in her butt! he has been chasing her around for a few hours but NO EGGS!!!!!! why isn't she releasing them?! i will probably place her back in the colander to rest a bit for dinner time+night time... yesterday there was a storm and today its quite warm so they are going NUTS!

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  • Regular Member

sometimes it takes a bit......you have been given great advice so far!!!! :) Daryl is the best!!

try feeding her peas...if the male were to leave her alone...does she seem to be hanging out at the top of the tank?

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  • Regular Member

hey there. if she is out of the colander NO way the male leaves her alone! however she doesnt seem 'floaty' - she basically lets him push her around and then swims away from him while he catches back up to her etc etc... unless she is in the colander she seems to be swimming all over the tank. peas seem like a great idea - will def try that tomorrow!

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