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:-? Okay, my friend won two goldfish (I don't know where, or how) but two small baby goldfish (they're adorable.) And I have this around 50 - 55 gallon tank, it's a really old tank with a powerful filter, a heater, and all that type of stuff. The filter has been running for a long time, but MANY fish have died in this tank, I haven't gotten a chance to clean it because it's so big, and there is so much gravel (I'm thinking I'm going to throw out the gravel because when you move the gravel, this black stuff kind of looks like oil in water spreads around the water making it brown and disgusting.)

When he gave them to me he said he had to go, because he had a flight to catch to Australia as he's visiting for a month.

Yesterday I was trying to float my goldfish in my tank, I floated them in for 10 minutes, after I added the tank water to their bag so they don't go into a shock, 2 minutes I come back and I see them swimming around in the tanks and the bag opened somehow!

Now they are hiding in the corner of the tank, I just fed them, but I think they are dying, I don't want my goldfish dying! I defiantly know it's the tank that's killing them because it kills all my fish, there is something wrong going on with that tank, it's obviously dirty because of the gravel.

What do I do? I have an extra 20 gallon tank I can put them in, which belonged to my turtle, but I don't mind rinsing it off or rinsing it off with vinegar and water, but the thing is I don't have an air pump or an extra filter for a 20 gallon? The only filter I have is for that 55 gallon which is way to powerful for a 20 gallon.

I also have an extra 3 gallon tank, help what do I do?
 

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put them in the 20 gallon.do 50% water changes every 3 days or so.feed lightly.completely clean out the big tank using vinegar.take out the gravel and toss it.bleach clean the filter (10-1 water to bleach ratio),rinse well and get new media /filter cartridges for it.either do bare bottom or 1" sand substrate,then do fish-in cycle. get some seachem prime water conditioner and an api liquid test kit.while this is going on read nitrogen cycle sticky. http://www.bettafish.com/showthread.php?t=111960
 

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Calm down, are they floating? No, then they are just little guys in a big tank. What are the levels in your water? Nitrate, Nitrite, and PH? If nothing is too out of whack, leave them alone. They are just scared, that's all.

Is anything in there going to eat them?

If not give it a day or two and they will be happy again. Oh ya, and goldfish are sometimes considered messy fish. I work 40 hours a week and find myself at least changing a bucket or three of water every two weeks to a month with a good filter, in my 55 gallon. But have a 12 inch Pleco to clean up after.
 

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And in this weather I would advise against using bleach. If it is the tank, then clean it, with water and elbow grease. They can live without rocks for a little while, but if you want to try and save the rocks then boil them ten to twenty minutes (Like beans). That will help get any foreign bodies off of them. (Cool them back down to fish safe temps. before re-adding to the tank.) do a 50 to 75 water change. Leave the old filter in and you should be good.
 

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standard goldfish are one of the most hardy fish. I think you may be over reacting a bit, there is probably another reason the fish died and not the actual tank. with all the other fish it could have been a number of things. Did you do regular water changes, syphoning the gravel as well? did you overstock to quickly causing ammonia issues, and leading to parasite outbreaks? If you changed water did you add a water conditioner de-chlorinator? water straight from the tank will kill some fish and knock the filters good bacteria back.
 

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If you could fill in this information for when your old tank was in use, it will give us a idea of what the issues could have been and your fish were dying I doubt it would have been the tank.
Housing
What size is your tank?
What temperature is your tank?
Does your tank have a filter?
Does your tank have an air stone or other type of aeration?
Is your tank heated?
What tank mates does your betta fish live with?

Food
What type of food do you feed your betta fish?
How often do you feed your betta fish?

Maintenance
How often do you perform a water change?
What percentage of the water do you change when you perform a water change?
What type of additives do you add to the water when you perform a water change?

Water Parameters:
Have you tested your water? If so, what are the following parameters?

Ammonia:
Nitrite:
Nitrate:
pH:
Hardness:
Alkalinity:

Symptoms and Treatment
How has your betta fish's appearance changed?
How has your betta fish's behavior changed?
When did you start noticing the symptoms?
Have you started treating your fish? If so, how?
Does your fish have any history of being ill?
How old is your fish (approximately)?
 

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Calm down, are they floating? No, then they are just little guys in a big tank. What are the levels in your water? Nitrate, Nitrite, and PH? If nothing is too out of whack, leave them alone. They are just scared, that's all.

Is anything in there going to eat them?

If not give it a day or two and they will be happy again. Oh ya, and goldfish are sometimes considered messy fish. I work 40 hours a week and find myself at least changing a bucket or three of water every two weeks to a month with a good filter, in my 55 gallon. But have a 12 inch Pleco to clean up after.
there is something in this tank that the op is nervous about.i recommend a clean slate,especially with the "oily" situation at hand.if the op just gives them a day or 2 in this tank they could very well be dead.goldfish are messy fish.i do not agree with your water changing schedule.goldies do best with large weekly water changes.having a large filter does not mean less water changes.
 

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And in this weather I would advise against using bleach. If it is the tank, then clean it, with water and elbow grease. They can live without rocks for a little while, but if you want to try and save the rocks then boil them ten to twenty minutes (Like beans). That will help get any foreign bodies off of them. (Cool them back down to fish safe temps. before re-adding to the tank.) do a 50 to 75 water change. Leave the old filter in and you should be good.
what does the weather have to do with a diluted bleach sterilization?if there is an oily residue on the tank how will elbow grease and water clean it off?vinegar rinses clean and will not harm anything except the residue.goldfish can live without rocks/gravel just fine.boling them will not take all of the residue off either.better safe than sorry ,as the op stated that it would not be a problem to discard them.and how is a 50-75%water change going to help if the tank is contaminated?with out being there and seeing this for ourselves,how are you going to diagnose anything?the op does not know what is going on in the tank,and has reported contamination and deaths.test kits will not tell us much except normal parameter variations.if there was an oily slick in my tank and my fish were dying,i would sterilize the tank and start over.
 

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No, but if the reason for lack of water changes is being a little busy, I know how they feel. So yes 10% weekly suggested, but if you are physically unable then 20-25% bi-weekly or 50% at three or a month. Remember the more water you change at once the more everything you replace. Good and bad. I still disagree with using harsh chemicals like bleach. When rinsing and boiling the rocks works just fine. It take a lot, a lot, of rinsing to rinse out the chemical, and they said that the reason for the lack of water change was lack of time and the size. Just syphon out the rocks from the tank and change 50% water, boil rocks clean the sides with a clean non chemical treated clothe or paper towel, and put new Prime (maybe even a double dose to help heavy metals, Nitrites and ammonia levels) with every water change.
 

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there is something in this tank that the op is nervous about.i recommend a clean slate,especially with the "oily" situation at hand.if the op just gives them a day or 2 in this tank they could very well be dead.goldfish are messy fish.i do not agree with your water changing schedule.goldies do best with large weekly water changes.having a large filter does not mean less water changes.
I don't know if you are referring to me or the other poster, either way I did not actually mention any specific water changes, but I am simply trying to get to the bottom of why the previous fish were dying, and if we can get clear answers on what tank maintenance was done then we might be able to help so the poster can use the 50 gallon tank. If it isn't the tank then changing tanks isn't necessarily going to save the fish if nothing in the fishes care changes, if that is the reason for the deaths of the other fish. So I am trying to get to the bottom of the problem, if the gravel was never cleaned regularly then the water will be filthy when you stir it up, and likely to leave a residue on the water surface. We can help if tank maintenance is the issue and that will be better for the fish in the long run.
 

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for goldies it is usually around 50-100% water changes weekly.since they are so small they could get away with 30% weekly.most goldfish keepers that have delt with commons or comets especially,would not use gravel in the tank. this will make maintenance easier and allow the filter to pick up the detritus easier,instead of it getting caught down in the gravel and messing up the parameters.also getting rid of any possible choking hazards they bring.using bleach is safe as long as it is used on plastics and glass and rinsed thoroughly.people use it to sterilize equipment and aquarium plants all of the time.it is also sometimes used to "recharge" certain types of filter media.
 

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I don't know if you are referring to me or the other poster, either way I did not actually mention any specific water changes, but I am simply trying to get to the bottom of why the previous fish were dying, and if we can get clear answers on what tank maintenance was done then we might be able to help so the poster can use the 50 gallon tank. If it isn't the tank then changing tanks isn't necessarily going to save the fish if nothing in the fishes care changes, if that is the reason for the deaths of the other fish. So I am trying to get to the bottom of the problem, if the gravel was never cleaned regularly then the water will be filthy when you stir it up, and likely to leave a residue on the water surface. We can help if tank maintenance is the issue and that will be better for the fish in the long run.

i was referring to the other poster-that is why i quoted them.if the fish died from ammonia or nitrite poisoning,the cycle has crashed,so why not start over in the 50 gallon.same thing if it was parasites. putting the fish in the 20 gallon was to get them out of the 50 until it was properly cleaned.i am trying to make things easier for the poster and take some of the guess work out of it.start with a clean slate,get any contaminants out of the tank,refresh them on cycling and take some of the obstacles like the gravel out of the equation.make the tank easier to take care of in general.
 

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for goldies it is usually around 50-100% water changes weekly.since they are so small they could get away with 30% weekly.most goldfish keepers that have delt with commons or comets especially,would not use gravel in the tank. this will make maintenance easier and allow the filter to pick up the detritus easier,instead of it getting caught down in the gravel and messing up the parameters.also getting rid of any possible choking hazards they bring.using bleach is safe as long as it is used on plastics and glass and rinsed thoroughly.people use it to sterilize equipment and aquarium plants all of the time.it is also sometimes used to "recharge" certain types of filter media.
I had goldfish when I was a kid and I cringe now when I think back to their care, at first it was a plastic bowl gravel and decoration, and tap water, nothing else. Then when I got a little older teenage, it was a aquarium and I did buy a internal filter but that was so I didn't need to clean it out every week, and still just used tap water and cleaned my filter sponges under the tap, when I thought it needed cleaning. I didn't have a clue back then and we didn't have internet and forums to go on. It was only until I was older and wanted to go into tropical that things like ammonia and water quality that I started to understand things a bit better. Even with it all my goldfish survived a good 10 years and eventually I gave them to my in-laws to go in their garden fish pond. I think a heron bird had them then some years later.
 

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i was referring to the other poster-that is why i quoted them.if the fish died from ammonia or nitrite poisoning,the cycle has crashed,so why not start over in the 50 gallon.same thing if it was parasites. putting the fish in the 20 gallon was to get them out of the 50 until it was properly cleaned.i am trying to make things easier for the poster and take some of the guess work out of it.start with a clean slate,get any contaminants out of the tank,refresh them on cycling and take some of the obstacles like the gravel out of the equation.make the tank easier to take care of in general.
Yea sorry for some reason I thought you were referring to me, but it will be a shame if the 50 gallon tank is never used again and it may be nothing to do with the tank. I hope we can help for fishes sake.:)
 

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it should be fine if it is cleaned correctly.vinegar and bleach should do the job.with everything sterilized and new media for the filter along with new (or no)substrate,it should be like setting up a new tank.what i want to know is the parameters of the ops tap water,and if there are other fish involved.it did not seem as though any other fish were in the tank,but i do not want to assume about that.as is the tank with 2 singletails would be fully stocked.i know they are small now,but they can easily put on 6+ inches in a year,and in a 50 gallon imo, they should be the only fish. i know the water changing schedule i suggested seems like a lot.it is actually less than what a serious goldfish keeper/breeder would suggest.this will keep disease and parasites at bay and replenish minerals in the tank..
 

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Well since I see that you have checked back, I just don't like bleach. I meant with it being winter and having a 55 gallon that it would not be easily sprayed out with a hose in the yard, and they said that the size was the issue on why they were not cleaning the tank. I have known four or five different people in my past fish ventures that have lost all of there fish from not cleaning the chlorine out of their tanks properly. And again, not substituting extra de-chlorinizer for the upped levels of chlorine. One friend even told me that they restocked the tank twice before giving up and didn't know why they kept dyeing. That the only thing they did differently was using chlorine to clean the tank. After explaining the chemical process to them they were able to house fish again, without frying them in chemicals. And I was not about to tell a new fish keeper to use bleach to clean their tank.

Well I hope that the little goldfish were just scared in a new big home.

And again Sandy, sorry for not clarifying that sooner with you, just got busy.
 

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i said to use vinegar on the tank,and a diluted bleach on the filter. these are totally normal and widely used practices.
 

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I know, just phobias I have using chemicals in the mix of my fish. I just use Hydrogen Peroxide over bleach, and Vinegar, baking soda to scrub, or neutralize, and have been known to even rubbing a sliced lemon on the side of the tank to let the acid clean it, then rinse. Just a naturalist. I will not even use towels that have been washed with detergents on my fish tanks. I wash them twice once to get them clean and again to get the detergents out. And have specific towels for that task.

But that is all I meant with the weather portion of that post.
 
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