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PostSubject: Daft questions   Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:31 am

I have recently inherited an unwanted goldfish from someone at work. I believe it is called a fantail.

It was in a bowl when I got it last week, but I have borrowed a small tank for it as a temporary home so it has a bit more space. I have never kept any sort of fish before though and want to ask a few questions.

The tank that it is now in is about 2ft long by 1ft high, and has a thin plastic lid. Is this ok for a goldfish?

What do I need to do to keep it healthy? I have got some goldfish flakes - how often should I feed it. How often do I change the water and what do I do with the fish when I do it?. The goldfish bowl had a few pebbles on the bottom and I have put them in the tank with it - is that ok, or shouldn't they have anything in with them?

As you will gather I am out of my depth at the moment and would really welcome any information or help you can give, thankyiou.
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PostSubject: Re: Daft questions   Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:44 am

Hiya Carole. I have a fantail too and they are great little fish. Well done on asking questions about how to look after it.

First things first - the tank. I have worked out the volume of your tank, if it is 2x1x1ft as about 56 litres, which is a reasonable size for a single goldfish.

You need to get some pea gravel, wash it really well and put it in the bottom of the tank, about 1"thick.

You need to get a filter, and a water testing kit too.

When you have them, test the water and let us know what the results are, and until then change half the water in the tank every day. You can keep the fish in the tank when you are doing this, but just be careful.

Feeding regimes vary, I feed a small (small pinch) of flakes every day to my two, but sometimes I miss out the flakes and give them veggies - peas, cucumber, brocolli - instead.

Hope that helps a bit Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: Daft questions   Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:48 am

Thanks Diana, do I need to warm the water at all. I know they are 'coldwater fish'but is it really coldwater just from the tap?

How often should I give it veggies and do I cook them first?
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PostSubject: Re: Daft questions   Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:51 am

Well that's a great size for a goldfish, Carole so good for you for wanting to do right by the fish. Nowadays, the minimum recommended size for goldfish is 30-45L so hopefully those awful tiny bowls will soon be a thing of the past. Smile

Having pebbles in the tank will be fine and actually give a nice decorative effect. Just make sure they're bigger than 0.5cm 'coz anything smaller could get stuck in the goldfishes mouth.

Some people feed their goldfish every day but, as they're quite mucky, I only feed mine every other day to keep the water quality good. It's down to personal preference really.

Does the tank have a filter? If not, it might be worthwhile picking one up - you can get "hang-on" ones that attach to the inside of the tank with sucker pads and aren't too expensive. This contains a filter sponge which provides a surface for filter bacteria to accumulate.

Having a filter will vastly improve the condition of the water, ensuring the fish remains healthy and also prolong its life. The reason goldfish survived in small, unfiltered bowls is because they are hardier than most captive fish but they ended up stunted and with significantly shortened lives as a result. Not many people know that a healthy goldfish kept in the right conditions can live up to 25 years!!

Change about 30-40% of the water once a week. The easiest way to do this is to use a clean bucket specifically for the purpose. B&Q sell 10L orange buckets for about 99p which are perfect for the job. If you pick up a gravel cleaner in the LFS (local fish shop), that's the easiest way to siphon off the dirty water and can also be used to put the clean water back into the tank again.

It's very important to add dechlorinator to the clean water at every water change to make the water suitable for the tank. Also, if you do have a filter with internal sponge, give the sponge a rinse once a month in the "dirty" water i.e. the water you've taken OUT of the tank and NEVER in tapwater as this will kill the filter bacteria.

Sorry, I know it's a lot to absorb but once you actually start doing the tank cleaning and maintenance, it soon becomes second nature and feel free to ask as many questions as you like. Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Daft questions   Sun Mar 02, 2008 8:55 pm

carole wrote:
Thanks Diana, do I need to warm the water at all. I know they are 'coldwater fish'but is it really coldwater just from the tap?

How often should I give it veggies and do I cook them first?

Sorry carole, I didn't see this last night Embarassed .

While they are called coldwater fish, and do not need a heater in their tank, they can get shock if they get a load of water added to the tank that is colder than they are used to. The tank water will warm up from the heat in the room, from the lights (if you have them) on the tank etc.

What is do is add a bit of warm water to the clean stuff just to make it the same temperature as the stuff you have taken out. I think that is most important in the Winter when the temperature out of the tap is a lot cooler than that in the tank (at least it is in mine).

As for veggies, I do cook the brocolli - they seem to prefer it, but things like cucumber or peas I don't I give them veggies about once a week. The peas will need de-skinning though. For more information on that, have a little read of the stickies that cover this topic, and dont hesitate to ask any questions you have Very Happy

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ViaAqua Tank AR620 97litres
1 red male betta, 1 BN
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PostSubject: Re: Daft questions   Sun Mar 02, 2008 10:33 pm

YEs cooking veggies is best. It makes them more palatable Very Happy
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