Comet Goldfish Fins Turning Black & Water Is Quickly Becoming Cloudy

kayglo
  • #1
On Thursday( 7/26) I brought home 2 comet goldfish for my sister. I won’t them at the state fair. I hear state fair goldfish do not last long but I want these to have a chance. I put them in a 3 gallon tank because that is what I can afford right now. I put Tetra SafeStart in the water because it is tap. After the first night I noticed one of the Goldfish was developing black around the edge of the fins. I read something online about it maybe being ammonia’s burns. I really do not know what to do to help the little guy. Please help me out because now the other goldfish is also developing the sameblack edges on its fins.
 
EbiAqua
  • #2
Unfortunately those fish need a pond, as even an aquarium 10x the size you have them in would be too small. It'd be a huge improvement but only for a few months.

Without knowledge of the nitrogen cycle the prognosis for those fish isn't good. My advice? Change out 80-90% of their water with fresh clean water daily using a good water conditioner like Prime. This will keep ammonia at bay until you can get them in an appropriate tank or a pond.
 
kayglo
  • Thread Starter
  • #3
Unfortunately those fish need a pond, as even an aquarium 10x the size you have them in would be too small. It'd be a huge improvement but only for a few months.

Without knowledge of the nitrogen cycle the prognosis for those fish isn't good. My advice? Change out 80-90% of their water with fresh clean water daily using a good water conditioner like Prime. This will keep ammonia at bay until you can get them in an appropriate tank or a pond.


Okay thanks! Besides the Prime is there anything else I can do to help them now? I’m planning on going to the pet store today.
 
EbiAqua
  • #4
Okay thanks! Besides the Prime is there anything else I can do to help them now? I’m planning on going to the pet store today.

Filtration for sure. Take the number of gallons of the tank and multiply it by 10. That is the GPH (Gallons Per Hour) rating to look for. 15 to 20 times may be even better considering that goldfish are waste-producing champions.

No heater is necessary. In fact, it would exacerbate the issues further.

Feed sparingly only once per day. Skip a day or two each week.

You are going to want anything bigger than a 20 gallon to prevent yourself from having constant ammonia problems. Also read up on the nitrogen cycle and do water changes several times per week of at least 50%.

That "cute pet that doesn't live very long" from the state fair ends up becoming an expensive problem for many people if they want to keep them alive. Easiest solution? Find a neighbor with a goldfish pond.
 
XYZ1234
  • #5
You can help them by giving them to your local fish store
 
EbiAqua
  • #6
You can help them by giving them to your local fish store

They might end up getting tossed into the feeder tank. We have fairs and carnivals order fish through us, they just purchase bulk bags of 250 feeder goldfish. Unless you state you don't want it to be a feeder that's where it'll go more than likely and end up dying from overcrowded conditions or fed to some punk's oscar.
 
goldface
  • #7
You can help them by giving them to your local fish store
That would be the exact opposite of helping them.
 
jdhef
  • #8
Welcome to FishLore!

Yikes, this story sounds familiar. This is how I got into fishkeeping. I can tell you from personal experience, those fish need a much larger tank (well actually a pond). But with a larger tank, you can keep them for a fairly long time.

I started with two common goldfish. One died shortly after we got it, so I bought a fantail to replace it. (Fancy goldfish, such as fantails only need 20 gallons for the first one and 10 for each additional one). After going thru several tanks (PetSmart started me off with a 1.5 gallon, then a 2.5g, then a 5g, then a 12g or 15 gallon and finally I stopped at a 25g. The common goldfish actually lived for 5 years (though I hear they can live for 30 years) and the fantail actually lived for 8 years. I have no doubt the common died due to being in to small a tank, and I think the fantail died of loneliness (although it did take 3 years) since he was in the tank alone after the common died.

I really wish these carnivals and fairs would stop giving out common goldfish. Hardly anyone is equipped to provide a proper home for them.

Best of luck!
 
CanadianFishFan
  • #9
I see so much of this stuff on Instagram. Ive forced my self to research the care on them just to comment and help others....This should be illegal to sell live animals at fairs!
 
kayglo
  • Thread Starter
  • #10
On Thursday( 7/26) I brought home 2 comet goldfish for my sister. I won’t them at the state fair. I hear state fair goldfish do not last long but I want these to have a chance. I put them in a 3 gallon tank because that is what I can afford right now. I put Tetra SafeStart in the water because it is tap. After the first night I noticed one of the Goldfish was developing black around the edge of the fins. I read something online about it maybe being ammonia’s burns. I really do not know what to do to help the little guy. Please help me out because now the other goldfish is also developing the sameblack edges on its fins.

UPDATE:

I picked up some test strips at the pet store and the pH levels in the water we’re off the charts. I’ve moved the fish to a bigger tank with a better filter. I’ve also treated the water with API Stress Coat because it was said to help with injured fins. I’ll keep an eye on the fish for the next few days to see if there is any improvement, worsening, or if it stays the same. Thanks so much for the help! I’m a newcomer just trying to get educated.
 
EbiAqua
  • #11
UPDATE:

I picked up some test strips at the pet store and the pH levels in the water we’re off the charts. I’ve moved the fish to a bigger tank with a better filter. I’ve also treated the water with API Stress Coat because it was said to help with injured fins. I’ll keep an eye on the fish for the next few days to see if there is any improvement, worsening, or if it stays the same. Thanks so much for the help! I’m a newcomer just trying to get educated.

Don't pay much mind to pH, it's the least of your worries. Focus on ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates.
 
tocandesu
  • #12
UPDATE:

I picked up some test strips at the pet store and the pH levels in the water we’re off the charts. I’ve moved the fish to a bigger tank with a better filter. I’ve also treated the water with API Stress Coat because it was said to help with injured fins. I’ll keep an eye on the fish for the next few days to see if there is any improvement, worsening, or if it stays the same. Thanks so much for the help! I’m a newcomer just trying to get educated.
Do you have a petco near you? They are having a $1 per gallon sale and a 50% off sale right now. Anything from that sale is better than the 3 gallon you have for them right now. Of course a large aquarium would be best for them, but you seem to be on a tight budget so anything above a 20 gallon should work temporarily. (The $1 dollar per gallon goes up to the 29 gallon).

Your best bet would be the 20 long or 29 if you are low on cash.

Also, what is the current pet store you go to right now? I might be able to point out some good budget offerings there for fish supplies if I know the chain(if it is a chain)
 
XYZ1234
  • #13
Do you have a neighbor with a pond?
 
Sh899y
  • #14
Welcome to FishLore!

Yikes, this story sounds familiar. This is how I got into fishkeeping. I can tell you from personal experience, those fish need a much larger tank (well actually a pond). But with a larger tank, you can keep them for a fairly long time.

I started with two common goldfish. One died shortly after we got it, so I bought a fantail to replace it. (Fancy goldfish, such as fantails only need 20 gallons for the first one and 10 for each additional one). After going thru several tanks (PetSmart started me off with a 1.5 gallon, then a 2.5g, then a 5g, then a 12g or 15 gallon and finally I stopped at a 25g. The common goldfish actually lived for 5 years (though I hear they can live for 30 years) and the fantail actually lived for 8 years. I have no doubt the common died due to being in to small a tank, and I think the fantail died of loneliness (although it did take 3 years) since he was in the tank alone after the common died.

I really wish these carnivals and fairs would stop giving out common goldfish. Hardly anyone is equipped to provide a proper home for them.

Best of luck!

Exactly the same boat as myself. I've got a 24 gallon tank with 3 Goldfish, compared to the same size tropical tank with 20+ in!

My biggest suggestion would be get a cleaner pump if you have any substrate and be sure to clean it well at least once a week during your water change.
 
jdhef
  • #15
I'm sorry to have to tell you this but test strips are notorious for being inaccurate, and if you can't trust your test results, why even bother testing. I highly recommend you invest in a liquid based test kit such as the API Master Test Kit for Freshwater.

The next thing I recommend is you read up on and fully understand the nitrogen cycle. I truly is the most important thing to understand when keeping fish.
Here's a link to an article explaining it:
Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle

Sadly, with fish keeping the learning curve is very steep. You really need to know 95% of everything on day one, then you can leisurely learn other 5% over the rest of your life. Also it can be a little expensive to get started also, you buy a tank, filter, heater, light, gravel, ornaments, test kit, water conditioner, fish food, gravel vac etc. Next thing you know, you've spent a few hundred dollars to keep a fish that you can probably buy for a couple dollars.

Then too, getting a tank cycled can be a lot of work (depending on what cycling method you use). But the good news is that once you are all set up and running with a cycled tank, it becomes far less expensive (unless you develop MTS...Multiple Tank Syndrome and end up with several tanks) and far less work. Really for me, all I do is feed my fish once a day and perform a 50% water change every Saturday morning. My normal on going expenses are just fish food, water conditioner and carbon.

Well hang in there and feel free to ask any and all questions you may have.
 
RiffRanger
  • #16
At the very least, invest in a larger tank with a good filter. Goldfish aren't the easy-to-care-for pet people assume they are. They require a lot of maintenance and much more space than people think. I once had five goldfish in a 29 gallon tank, which logic would say was woefully overstocked, but they thrived. I managed to keep up with their waste with water changes once per week. So it's possible to keep goldfish under less-than-idea circumstances as long as you're willing to put in the work to keep them healthy. As others have said, Prime will help keep the ammonia under control between water changes. Good luck.
 
tocandesu
  • #17
I'm sorry to have to tell you this but test strips are notorious for being inaccurate, and if you can't trust your test results, why even bother testing. I highly recommend you invest in a liquid based test kit such as the API Master Test Kit for Freshwater.

The next thing I recommend is you read up on and fully understand the nitrogen cycle. I truly is the most important thing to understand when keeping fish.
Here's a link to an article explaining it:
Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle

Sadly, with fish keeping the learning curve is very steep. You really need to know 95% of everything on day one, then you can leisurely learn other 5% over the rest of your life. Also it can be a little expensive to get started also, you buy a tank, filter, heater, light, gravel, ornaments, test kit, water conditioner, fish food, gravel vac etc. Next thing you know, you've spent a few hundred dollars to keep a fish that you can probably buy for a couple dollars.

Then too, getting a tank cycled can be a lot of work (depending on what cycling method you use). But the good news is that once you are all set up and running with a cycled tank, it becomes far less expensive (unless you develop MTS...Multiple Tank Syndrome and end up with several tanks) and far less work. Really for me, all I do is feed my fish once a day and perform a 50% water change every Saturday morning. My normal on going expenses are just fish food, water conditioner and carbon.

Well hang in there and feel free to ask any and all questions you may have.
Actually, Aquarium Co-op did a test between Tetra test strips and the master kit and found no difference in accuracy. Though the API brand of test strips are inaccurate.

However, I also recommend the Master Kit because the Tetra test kit lacks an Ammonia test
 

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