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Possible Tail Rot?


Guest aaronds

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Guest aaronds

Hi,

I currently own 3 goldfish which I've had for a number of years and I've never really had any problems, however yesterday I noticed that one fish appeared to be eating the tail of another. I noticed that something had definitely happened to it's tail and so I began to do some research.

It didn't take me long to find out that it could possibly be tail/fin rot, which is possible as I had unfortunately cleaned them out later than usual, meaning that something bacteria related is possible (I think). Anyway, I've got a picture of it's tail, although I do apologise for the bad quality of the photo. Could anyone give me some clarification as to whether this is tail rot or not, and what I should do to treat the fish? Sorry I couldn't provide any more specific information, if there's anything you need to know please just ask and I'll try an find out the best I can.

Here's the picture of the tail: http://img577.imageshack.us/f/fisho.jpg/

Sorry if this was in the wrong forum by the way, I'm new to these boards.

Thanks.

Edited by aaronds
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Guest aaronds

Thanks for your reply.

Havn't got a test-kit.

[*]Test Results for the Following:

[*]Ammonia Level?

[*]Nitrite Level?

[*]Nitrate level?

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

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

[*]Brand of test-kit used and whether strips or drops?

[Around 15C/60F, haven't got a thermometer in at the moment.]Water temperature?

[13 gallons]Tank size (how many gals.) and how long has it been running?

[Elite Stingray 15 w/ carbon filters]What is the name and size of the filter(s)?

[50%-85% depending on condition.]How often do you change the water and how much?

[3 goldfish, small in size]How many fish in the tank and their size?

[tetra aquisafe]What kind of water additives or conditioners?

['aquarian goldfish flake food']What do you feed your fish and how often?

[no]Any new fish added to the tank?

[no]Any medications added to the tank?

[frayed tail]Any unusual findings on the fish such as "grains of salt," bloody streaks, frayed fins or fungus?

[Don't think so]Any unusual behavior like staying at the bottom, not eating, etc.?

I tried to fill it out to the best of my knowledge, sorry it's limited.

Edited by aaronds
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  • Regular Member

That's alright :) But here's the thing: sinhgle tailed goldfish like yours require 20 US gallon (around 75 litre) EACH because they produce a lot of waste and because they grow up to 10 to 16 inches. So the tank you have is much too small even for one of them. Don't feel too bad, almost all of us started out all wrong. Being overstocked like that is paradise for bad bacteria because the water quality is very low and that caused the fin rot. Try to give them a bigger home asap! You can even use a big, food safe storage tub, they are quite cheap! Keep the water quality pristine and salt the water, 1 level teaspoon per gallon. Either aquarium salt or pure salt that has NO additives of any kind as these can kill your fish.

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Guest aaronds

Thanks for your feedback but for the time being how should I treat the fish? Also, are you sure you haven't mistaken my fish for another type of goldfish? That amount of water seems totally extreme and we've never been advised to have anywhere near that amount of water. What's more is we've never had fish grow that big, these are fully grown and probably about 4 inches at best. They look the same as your 'orange fishie'.

Edited by aaronds
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Thanks for your feedback but for the time being how should I treat the fish? Also, are you sure you haven't mistaken my fish for another type of goldfish? That amount of water seems totally extreme and we've never been advised to have anywhere near that amount of water. What's more is we've never had fish grow that big, these are fully grown and probably about 4 inches at best. They look the same as your 'orange fishie'.

Single tails get huge. Listen to Oerba. Also, try the salt as she said. Your water conditions need to be pristine to clear the tail issue up. It takes some time.

The size of your fish depends on many factors, including the amount of room they have.

I consider my single tail quite stunted and she is probably just under 9 inches. She was just moved to her own 29 gallon tank and a lot of people would still think that is too small.

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Yes Fang is not mistaken about what fish you have and your fish has never grown that big because it is stunted from being in a small space. That means its body stops growing but its organs do not, which eventually leads to death. Pristine water will definitely help out.

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From the photo your goldfish looks like a single tailed goldfish. All single tailed goldfish need that much water, but most petstores don't tell you because they just want to sell the fish and make a quick buck.

This might help you with imagining the size. The big one honestly is quite big even for an adult goldfish, but even only HALF the size of the big fish is massive http://img.thesun.co.uk/multimedia/archive/00470/GB_BIGGEST_Goldfish_470456a.jpg

You see the two fish to the far left in my signature, Hugo and Orange Fishie? These two were tiny when I got them, but they grew to be 9 inches (Hugo) and 7.5 inches (Orange Fishie).

I am not saying it is impossible to keep a fish in such a small tank, but then you will end up with sick fish as right now :( It would be like you being locked in a tiny room for all your life, together with two others, and your own poop etc will be cleaned out only as often as you clean your fish tank, and you have to live, sleep and eat there. That would be no fun, would it? :(

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Guest aaronds

Wow, I'm stunned by all this. I've had these fish for years and I have never known about any of this, so thank you all for your posts!

As for the stunting, are you suggesting that my fish will simply die soon due to the lack of space? They stopped growing years ago and they've never shown any signs of being unwell.

When it comes to the tail issue, I've just cleaned out the tank yesterday and did a massive water change, so it should be in very good shape at the moment. When I do my next change shortly, should I acquire some aquarium salt, then do a 70% water change and while adding the water, add 1 level teaspoon per gallon?

For future reference, would fantail goldfish be better suited to our tank?

Thanks all.

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It can lead to many problems down the road, organ failure and swim bladder disease are the most prominent.

That's good. Yes do 1 level teaspoon per gallon to raise the salinity to 0.1% and then in another twelve hours repeat to get to 0.2%. If things still do not improve repeat the process once more for 0.3%, but do not go any higher than that. I would do daily 50% water changes since you do not have a test kit to test for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate.

Putting one fancy goldfish in that tank would be ok for a little while, but as it grows it would be pushing it. Do you think you could get a 29 gallon or larger so you could have 2 fancies in that 29 gallon? :yeah: Maybe for Christmas?

You're definitely doing the right thing for your fish. :D If you have anymore questions please please do ask!

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Guest aaronds

Things don't really look good at the moment. Obviously I want to do the best thing for the fish, and so I'll try and treat the tail problem over the coming weeks. Just to clarify:

70% water change w/ added aquarium salt. 12 hours later another 70% water change w/ added aquarium salt.

Then after that 50% water change (add salt again when changing water?).

The problem is there is no way I can possibly get a tank big enough for these fish, and subsequently the best thing to do for the fish would be to try and find a new home for them. They've been living in a tank for years, I'm guessing a pond would be out of the question?

Thanks

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Yes. when you get to 0.3% just add back as much salt as you take out so you don't overdose and the fish should be feeling better. Honestly 0.2% should be good enough rather than 0.3%.

That is the kindest and best thing that you can do. Actually if you can find a pond that'd be wonderful. Sometimes aquariums will take them, do you think the London Aquarium might take them in somehow? Maybe give them a call? If not keep looking around online.

Edited by Haruka
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Guest aaronds

Thanks for the treatment instructions, I'll get hold of the salt asap. No, I highly doubt the London Aquarium would take them, + that's quite a way from where I live.

However, our next door neighbours do have a small pond. Are you sure introducing them to a pond would work considering they've been in a tank pretty much all their lives? Our neighbour does already have goldfish in that pond, bigger than our fish. I'm guessing this would be another issue?

Cheers

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Make sure it's eithr aquarium salt or salt with no anti-caking agents (iodine, or prussiate of soda). Make sure it just says Salt. Iv'e had success with sea salt with nothing added to it.

They will be fine, but you'll want to make sure they're healthy so they can escape should anything happen, and you don't want to spread disease to your neighbor's fish. I would ask them first and see what they think.

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also, regarding the pond. you will probably want to move them in the spring as they are probably not strong enough right now to get through the winter.

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Well of course it depends on how big the pond is. First tell your neighbor about your situation and ask if he was willing to take the single tails in his pond. But in a pond too there should be 20 gallons available per fish minimum! Does the pond look clean or dirty? If the water is green it usually is alright too because that just means there is a lot of algae in there which is natural food for the goldfish.

But if the water actually looks nasty and dirty, then you might want to look for a different new home.

Other than that... I have never introduced fish from a tank to a pond, but I think I personally would go like this: First make sure your fish are healthy and wait until spring when it gets warmer. Then slowly start replacing the tank water with pond water, 10% at a time every other day, so they can get used to the different water quality (pH, hardness etc).

When the water is 100% pond water, keep them like that for a few more days to see if they are fine. And whenever you let the go into the pond, make sure the temperature is as close as possible. Do it on a day where you are at home, take a thermometer (CLEAN!!) and keep checking the temperature in your tank and in the pond. When they both have the same temperature, release the fish into the pond.

Again, I don't know if this is the right way to do it, but that is what I would do. :)

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Guest aaronds

Ok thank you all for your help, much appreciated :). For the time being, I'll get hold of some aquarium salt asap and begin treating them. Once spring arrives, I'll look into introducing them into the pond. The pond is green, but I'm unsure on the gallons to fish ratio. Anyway, I may be on these boards in the near future, or at least in the spring.

Thanks again for all the help :)

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