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Old 07-11-2010, 10:23 PM
 
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,865,954 times
Reputation: 1900

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Hi Fish Experts,

My kids' goldfish died today. I know goldfish are not known for their longevity, but I'm concerned because this is the 6th one since late April.

The last goldfish we had before relocating to N.C. was still kicking strong after eighteen months with us. We gave him to a neighbor's daughter to avoid subjecting him to a long-distance move and, as of last week, he is still alive.

I started with the same tank, which was clean and sterilized, fresh gravel, a new filter and new water treated with all the same chemicals I used in starting the tank back home. I am using the same method for introducing the fish into the tank as I've always used.

I simply don't believe N.C. goldfish are more "sickly" than Chicago fish. What could be wrong? Any ideas?

Thanks!
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Old 07-12-2010, 05:06 AM
 
Location: Black Hammock Island
4,620 posts, read 14,986,983 times
Reputation: 4620
Even though you're using the same chemicals, started off with a clean tank, using the tried-n-true method for introducing the fish to the tank, there's obviously something obscure that's different in NC than Chicago.

I'm thinking of two things off the top of my head:
1) are you using tap water? If so, is it well water or city? Perhaps it has some sort of high concentration of a mineral that's not affected by your chemical treatments.

2) where are you buying the fish and what specie of goldfish? Same kind of fish as you had in Chicago? Have you purchased them from the same store each time?

If you've been buying the fish from the same place, perhaps buy the next one from a completely different store. Maybe go to a garden center that has pond supplies and purchase a "pond fish". That's where I got mine (a comet maybe?) for $3.95 and he's now 4 years old (purchased in PA and now in FL).
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Old 07-12-2010, 03:08 PM
 
821 posts, read 861,560 times
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Sorry for your losses
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:47 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,865,954 times
Reputation: 1900
Quote:
Originally Posted by mawipafl View Post
Even though you're using the same chemicals, started off with a clean tank, using the tried-n-true method for introducing the fish to the tank, there's obviously something obscure that's different in NC than Chicago.

I'm thinking of two things off the top of my head:
1) are you using tap water? If so, is it well water or city? Perhaps it has some sort of high concentration of a mineral that's not affected by your chemical treatments.

2) where are you buying the fish and what specie of goldfish? Same kind of fish as you had in Chicago? Have you purchased them from the same store each time?

If you've been buying the fish from the same place, perhaps buy the next one from a completely different store. Maybe go to a garden center that has pond supplies and purchase a "pond fish". That's where I got mine (a comet maybe?) for $3.95 and he's now 4 years old (purchased in PA and now in FL).
Yes, I'm using tap water. It's city water. It kind of scares me if it's killing fish like this. Should I be drinking it or cooking with it?

I am not sure if they all came from the same place. My husband picked them up so it's probably been the same one or two local stores. I will get a pond fish next time and see what happens. [Crossing fingers]

Thanks!
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Old 07-13-2010, 11:49 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,865,954 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TonytheT View Post
Sorry for your losses
Thanks TonytheT. It's becoming more difficult to convince them that their fish is "taking a nap" inside the little fish house. ;-)
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Old 07-13-2010, 08:28 PM
 
Location: Round Rock, Texas
13,448 posts, read 15,481,027 times
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Goldfish are the rather sensitive lot. I owned them for years before switching to tropical. Making sure...are you using Aqua Safe when you add the new tap water to the tank?
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Old 07-14-2010, 06:38 AM
 
5,064 posts, read 15,900,631 times
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Your new "spotless" tank might have been too clean. Fish are healthier in "cycled" water with all the beneficial bacteria that you can only find in an established tank. And while a new tank is cycling, ammonia levels continually rise so that a small partial water change every few days might be necessary. High ammonia levels will kill fish. Also, did you add a dechlorinator to the water? Tap water has chlorine, which is toxic to fish. In addition, the goldfish might have been sick, that's pretty common in pet stores. I'm so sorry for your loss. I've had goldfish for many, many years, and they are very hardy. They just need the right conditions in which to thrive. Be aware that "common" goldfish grow very fast though, and will eventually reach 12" in length. It's an old wive's tale that fish will only grow as large as their tank allows.
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Old 07-14-2010, 10:03 AM
 
Location: Black Hammock Island
4,620 posts, read 14,986,983 times
Reputation: 4620
Quote:
Originally Posted by andthentherewere3 View Post
It's an old wive's tale that fish will only grow as large as their tank allows.
I agree with that.
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Old 07-15-2010, 03:30 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,865,954 times
Reputation: 1900
Quote:
Originally Posted by andthentherewere3 View Post
Your new "spotless" tank might have been too clean. Fish are healthier in "cycled" water with all the beneficial bacteria that you can only find in an established tank. And while a new tank is cycling, ammonia levels continually rise so that a small partial water change every few days might be necessary. High ammonia levels will kill fish. Also, did you add a dechlorinator to the water? Tap water has chlorine, which is toxic to fish. In addition, the goldfish might have been sick, that's pretty common in pet stores. I'm so sorry for your loss. I've had goldfish for many, many years, and they are very hardy. They just need the right conditions in which to thrive. Be aware that "common" goldfish grow very fast though, and will eventually reach 12" in length. It's an old wive's tale that fish will only grow as large as their tank allows.
I was concerned about a "too clean" tank so I started it about five days before I added the first goldfish. I did add a dechlorinator and AquaSafe. I added something else but used the last of it so I can't recall the name right now. I also added a little water everyday to replace whatever evaporated.

The strangest part is I bought a plecostomus to help eat the algae. He's survived all his tankmates. This leads me to believe the water may be "okay" to some point. It's puzzling to me.

As far as size goes, I think we're okay there. I only have one in the tank at a time. I didn't know they get that big though. That's interesting.

Thanks for your insight.
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Old 07-15-2010, 03:38 AM
 
Location: North Carolina
1,764 posts, read 2,865,954 times
Reputation: 1900
Quote:
Originally Posted by riaelise View Post
Goldfish are the rather sensitive lot. I owned them for years before switching to tropical. Making sure...are you using Aqua Safe when you add the new tap water to the tank?
I did use Aqua Safe and a couple other prep treatments. They were the same ones I used in the tank in Chicago, though. Do you think stores sell different "formulas" of the same products in various parts of the country? That seems unlikely to me, but I don't know for sure.

I always believed goldfish did not have a long lifespan based on ones I had as a child. We took the kids to an event in October 2008 and they won a goldfish. I don't know where it came from but our neighbor's daughter won one a goldfish at the same event. Both of those goldfish are still alive and made me change my views about their longevity, in general.

I'm perplexed. Nevertheless, I've decided not to get anymore until I can figure out what's really going on.

Thanks!
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