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GoldfishJoe

Do Goldies REALLY Die Of Old Age?

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I mean if they are meant to live around 20 years or so on average and you see all these people who's fish lasted anywhere from 2 years to 10 years, are these premature deaths?

I mean there are so many diseases, poisonings, illnesses, swim bladder issues, over crowding etc that ca just kill them off.

Has anyone here actually had a goldie die of just good ol' fashioned old age?

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I think that the vast majority of pet goldfish die of something other than old age - most often disease or infection. You're right, goldfish can live for decades, but they (especially fancies) can be very difficult to keep healthy. If there is a problem with water quality, they can get sick. Or disease can be introduced by new fish. Even the genetics of the fish can limit their lifespans, for example, those who develop bodies so compact that they get swim bladder disorders. :(

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^Agreed!

Joe, the decade+ plus life is somewhat like max potential lifespan, but it's not the average lifespan.

For example, in humans, the potential lifespan is at least 110-120 years old. I reality, the vast vast majority of us will never get even close to that. Currently, the average lifespan for those in technologically advanced countries is in the 70s, and that number was far less even 100 years ago.

Having said that, I think that all the things I am learning on this forum will have helped to extend my fish's life expectancy :)

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The oldest bunch I've seen lived to about 13 years(!!), then one got sick and it was a domino effect :(

I think genetics plays a big part in this, making them more susceptible to illnesses and diseases. And these sicknesses being so transferrable between goldfish adds to their untimely demises. A lot of icky things can thrive in aquatic environments and its hard to keep your fish away from them since its so uniform and they are limited in where they can go. That's why proper filtration and clean water is so important...

I lost one to a faulty swim bladder simply due to his morphology. *wags fist* stupid genetics!

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PS Have you ever seen a 44 year old goldfish? Look at this...

(Sorry video is in Japanese)

Shame about the setup they have... little guy must be immortal (or they're changing tank water with water from the fountain of youth) :P

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PS Have you ever seen a 44 year old goldfish? Look at this...

(Sorry video is in Japanese)

Shame about the setup they have... little guy must be immortal (or they're changing tank water with water from the fountain of youth) :P

Here is a little English blurp about that goldfish.

http://bradninch-tc.gov.uk/index.php/bradninch-history/75-goldfish

Edited by dnalex

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I don't see your blurb, Alex.

I love that video! I find it interesting that the fish stayed so small.

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I don't see your blurb, Alex.

I love that video! I find it interesting that the fish stayed so small.

You didn't see the blurp because I forgot to add the link. I'm afraid I'm not yet 40 and going senile :(

Edited by dnalex

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fortunately i haven't experienced any problems yet as i am quite new to the hobby. I don't know what its like to lose a fish, but my dad used to keep 3 commons in a ... 38 litres which is 10 gallons i think and they lived for a year. i don't know how.. just goes to show the hardiness of goldfish :)

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The oldest fish I had was Pharoh he lived to a nice age of 9 years old. He never gotten sick and when he did it killed him :(

So yes goldfish if taken care of and have everything right can live a long time. :thumb:

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I had two that lived at least 12 years as a pair, I moved and gave them to my brother and one of them lived quite a long time after that. It was in a 44 gal corner tank with no other fish with a fluval canister filter. Knowing how fastidious my brother is, I'm sure he kept the tank pristine.

Edited by CindyGen

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My grandparents back in Fiji had 2 large goldies in a 10 gal when my mom was young. No filter at all. They were about 15 when they died. They died around the time my mom got married(she was about 23). One was all white and one was orange with some white scales.

Their water was always green according to my mom, but they always cleaned it but it got green fast, since the tank was in their living which got a TON of light.

I'll look for some old pics my mom has and see if they are in the background.

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Does anything just die of 'old age'? Isn't there ultimately some underlying cause?

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I personally think that the majority of goldfish deaths are caused by genetics. There is a reason why these Methusalems of goldfish usually are single tails, since with their more natural body shape they encounter way less problems.

Fancy goldfish and the way they are bread, they tend to get sick much more easily. From what I read on here and other places online, many fancy goldfish only live a few years before genetics pay their toll and the fish succumbs to problems caused by their weaker bodies.

That also is another reason why it is almost always single tails you hear about, that lived decades in goldfish bowls. They are much stronger and healthier than the majority of fancy goldfish.

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Does anything just die of 'old age'? Isn't there ultimately some underlying cause?

Annual plants do, and there are animals (like some bugs and worms) that have tightly fixed life spans. But we don't and neither do goldfish. But as assorted body parts wear out, and the insults of our environment build up, we become increasingly more likely to die of what would be a minor problem in a young one.

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