Went to WalMart today with someone from my church. Elderly lady, her son works in Lawn and Garden. See, that's the kicker in this story, my WalMart doesn't SELL pets. Supplies, yes, but not actual pets.
The son mentioned to me, knowing how interested I am in fish, that some "freaking" idiot had come in and put goldfish in one of the garden fountains. Nobody knows who or when. So I went over, and sure enough here are four small goldfish with about the amount of room afforded to bettas. It made me mad. I came back and told the son that in those conditions they only had days to live, given the amount of waste they produce. So, the son said he'd talk to the head of his department, who is going to talk to the store manager.
Aaaaand I might be getting four goldfish.
So the bewildered part is this: I have a 16 gallon tank that couldn't support two shubunkins. I can give two fish away and know that they'll be adequately cared for. The others are mine until I can find them a good home.
So I have a 16g filtered, a gravel vac, ammonia-eating tablets, goldfish flakes, and ammonia test strips. What can I do to maximize their chances at survival? I'm willing to do as many water changes as necessary, but I couldn't in good conscience let those fish die where nobody could even attempt to care for them properly.