A goldfish looks attractive, being gold in color and adds to the decor of the room. Taking care of a goldfish is not difficult, provided you are willing to spend some time and put in some effort to do so. A goldfish makes a good beginner’s pet. Some types of goldfish, when taken good care of, can live from 20 to 50 years.
Species of goldfish
There are actually many varieties of goldfish available over a hundred. Among them are:
- Black Moor
- Bubble Eye
- Telescope Eye
- Celestial Eye
It is well nigh impossible to list all of them you have to select one which you like. They are not all gold in color, but they usually have some gold on them. In fact, the black moor goldfish is actually black.
Your goldfish tank
While the common concept of housing a goldfish is a round bowl, this is good only for baby goldfish. As many species of goldfish grow to be quite large, they need sufficient place to swim around and so, the bigger the aquarium the better. Then you won’t have to keep on upgrading as your goldfish grows.
As a rule of the thumb, you should allow at least 8 to 10 gallons of water per goldfish, so keep that in mind when buying your tank and the number of goldfish you want to keep. You can either get a filter to keep the water clean or change at least 25 percent of the water every week. If the surface area is large enough, you may not need an aerator as the fish swimming will be sufficient to aerate the water.
Make sure that the tank has some gravel and some plants and rocks, real or plastic. However, plastic may have a tendency to get fungus or mould if kept damp, so you will have to keep it clean. Goldfish also require some hiding places which rocks and plants should provide. You should have a wire or mesh cover for the bowl or tank to prevent any other pet from accessing the fish and also to prevent the fish from jumping out.
Feeding your goldfish
While goldfish are omnivorous, you can feed them goldfish pellets or flakes. Try and remove whatever food is left after a few minutes, otherwise the tank will get dirty and start smelling. If your fish is older, then you can feed it once a day. For baby fish, 2-3 small feeds a day are better. Apart from fish food, you can also give it an occasional treat in the form of worms and shrimp.
It is easy to overfeed a goldfish and this will make it fatter and more prone to diseases.
How many goldfish to keep
You can keep one or more goldfish together. As goldfish are prey they do better together, or you will have to keep other fish which will go with the goldfish. If you keep more than one goldfish, you have to be careful that one does not eat all the food, leaving the other with little or none.
Looking after your goldfish
While goldfish do not require any particular labor intensive work, you still need to watch out for diseases. Often people buy goldfish, feed them and leave them and then soon find that they have died. It is important to feed the fish, keep the water clean and see that it is getting enough oxygen.
If it shows any sign of disease, it needs to be taken to a vet. In some instances, medicines can be mixed in the water in the tank. If there are other goldfish who can catch the infection, you may need to keep the ill goldfish separately.