Okay so... My little brother is in middle school. Well, I got a phone call from him the other day because he wanted me to take in 3 goldfish that he had rescued. It turns out that two kids decided it would be funny to put a pearlscale, a redcap oranda, and a black moor in a toilet bowl in the girls restroom to freak girls out. My brothers friend happened to be the one who found them and put them in a pepsi bottle with the top cut off until they could be taken home. So after this phone call I drove down to get the fish and brought them home in individual zip lock bags (better than being stacked in a pepsi bottle).
I had a 20 gallon that was intended to be a tropical community tank. It was not cycled or anything... so I ordered some tetra safestart when I got home. So, after the first night the pearlscale died. I did not quarantine them because I don't have a quarantine tank large enough for three goldfish so I put them right into the tank.
Well, the black moor was chasing the oranda around constantly after the pearlscale died, and I ended up going out of town for 3 days... and I knew the oranda would be dead because she was looking pretty bad before I left. Also, the ammonia never went above .5 because I fed VERY sparingly. I think they were either sick before they went in the toilet or exposed to something bad in the toilet water. I put them in clean water before they went in the tank to clean them off a little with some AQ salt.
Anyway, I got back and she was also dead.
I have had the black moor for about 2 weeks since this incident and he has barely grown. I added the tetra safestart when I got home and it started the cycle but I think I'm stalled at the Nitrite stage. Nitrites went up to 1ppm so I did a water change even though you are not supposed to.... I am not going to damage the fish because I want the bacteria. So I have ordered more tetra safestart because I read that another dose usually does the trick if you are stalled at the Nitrite stage. I REALLY need this tank to cycle fast because I am having trouble keeping the nitrites down and I only feed the little guy 2 pellets a day atm. His fins are starting to split a little and get tiny pin holes.... I'm not sure if this is fin rot or what because I have only seen pictures and it doesn't look like that. I feel horrible for the little guy because I didn't have the tank ready... but really... he would have been a flushed fish if I didn't take him. (dad keeps calling him catfish bait -_-... I hope joking)
They have a bubbler/aerator, luckily I had a filter that filters double what the tank needed, I have some spectrum pellets, and plan on making a gel food as soon as I get paid.
Once the water params are under control and he starts growing (if he isn't already stunted) he will get a larger tank when I can afford it with a friend. I probably won't be doing a community tank anymore because I don't want to do that many water changes with no way to use a python in my apartment. (We have wierd sink heads)
Anyway, I have grown super attached to this little goldie and I really hope he takes off once my next batch of tetra safestart gets here... I feel really stupid for not having a cycled tank with a goldfish. If you have any ideas to help cycle the tank or keep him safe while it cycles it would be much appreciated. Also, he seems alot happier since I gave up on waiting for the safestart to work. So if this batch doesn't finish in a day- 3 days I will just be doing a TON of water changes a week... which will suck, but I love all my fish and they deserve the best I can give them.