Goldfish are very popular fish in the aquarium hobby. People who don’t even have an aquarium are familiar with goldfish.
So if you want to keep goldfish or you already got a goldfish and wondering, are they easy to take care of then you’re in the right place.
In this article, I’m going to answer the same question.
Goldfish are easy to take care of. This is because they are very hardy fish and they can tolerate water chemistry fluctuations. But you do need to fulfill their basic requirements which include feeding them high-quality food and keeping them in a large enough tank.
The fact that goldfish are hardy and can tolerate water chemistry in the tank water makes them a good fish for beginners.
However, you do need to take care of them and fulfill their basic requirements. And this is what I’m going to talk about now.
Why goldfish are easy to take care of?
Goldfish are very popular in aquarium hobby. No matter which pet store you visit you’ll see lots of goldfish there.
The reason goldfish are so popular is because it is very hardy fish. Goldfish can tolerate mistakes that usually a beginner fish keeper makes.
This is the reason many veteran aquarists recommend goldfish to beginner fish keepers.
Beginner fishkeepers generally struggle to maintain the water parameters in the ideal range. As goldfish can tolerate a wide range of water parameters, they can survive the water parameter changes.
How to take care of goldfish?
Goldfish are very hardy fish. So they are very easy to take care of. However, you’ll need to fulfill their basic requirements to keep them successfully in your tank. And you should always try to maintain the ideal environment for the goldfish to keep them happy and healthy in the tank.
Now I’m going to tell you everything you need to know to keep your goldfish happy and healthy in your tank.
Fish tank for goldfish
That’s why you need a large tank to keep goldfish in the tank. For a single goldfish, you’ll need at least a 20 gallon tank. And you’ll need an extra 10 gallons for every new fish.
For example, if you want to keep 3 goldfish in a tank then you’ll need 10 gallons for the first goldfish and then 10 gallons each for the remaining two goldfish. So in total, you’ll need a 40 gallon tank for all three goldfish.
Goldfish are very social. So ideally, you should keep at least 2 goldfish in the tank.
Cycle the fish tank before adding the fish in the tank
Once you’ve decided the number of goldfish you want to keep in the tank and the tank size accordingly, before adding the fish, you’ll need to cycle the fish tank before adding the fish.
Cycling a fish tank is basically a process of housing beneficial bacteria in the tank. The beneficial bacteria or good bacteria will break down the waste produced by the fish into less harmful by-products. I’ve written a detailed article on what cycling a fish tank means here.
Now there are different ways to cycle a fish tank.
- You can do fish-in cycling where you’ll add the fish in the tank. But this method is not recommended because it stresses the fish.
- You can cycle your fish tank without fish by using fish food or ammonia
- You can also cycle your fish tank using live aquarium plants.
- You can also instantly cycle your fish tank using a filter from an established tank
Acclimate your goldfish before adding it to the tank
Once your fish tank is cycled then you’ll need to first acclimate the fish tank before adding it in in the tank.
Here’s a video that shows how to acclimate your new fish before adding it to the tank.
Diet and feeding your goldfish
Goldfish are omnivorous and are voracious eaters. So they’ll eat whatever you put in their tank.
But for the proper growth and development of your fish, you’ll need to feed high-quality fish foods that are specifically made for goldfish. This is important because goldfish are not very good at digesting food. So they need fish food that is easy to digest for them.
Besides, goldfish need a high carb to protein food. That’s why you should go for the fish food that is specially made for goldfish.
Besides, as I mentioned earlier, goldfish are voracious eaters. So you’ll need to be mindful while feeding your goldfish.
It is very easy to overfeed goldfish. And overfeeding can cause multiple issues.
- If you overfeed goldfish then the goldfish will produce a lot of waste in the tank. The waste will break down in the tank and produce toxic byproducts for the fish.
- Besides, the leftover food will get trapped in the substrate or under the ornaments in your tank. Over time this fish food will break down and produce toxic by-products in the tank.
So how much fish food should I feed my goldfish?
You should feed the amount of fish food your fish can consume within 2-3 minutes. And you can feed your goldfish once or twice a day.
Also, after feeding the fish food make sure to remove the uneaten food.
My recommended Goldfish food for proper growth and development of your Goldfish
- Tetra TetraFin Plus Goldfish Flakes (link to Amazon)
- Repashy Super Gold (link to Amazon)
- SAN FRANCISCO BAY Brand Freeze Dried Bloodworms (link to Amazon)
Besides commercial fish food, you can also feed vegetables to your goldfish. Here’s the list of all the human foods you can feed to your goldfish.
Maintain the ideal water parameters in the tank
Goldfish can tolerate a wide ranges of water parameters like water temperature, pH, KH, etc.
To keep your goldfish healthy in your fish tank you should always try to keep the water parameters in the ideal ranges.
Here’s the table showing the ideal water parameters for goldfish.
|Nitrate||Max 40 PPM|
|Temperature||68° to 74° F (20° to 23° C)|
|Hardness (GH)||150 PPM|
The ideal temperature range for goldfish is between 68° to 74° F (20° to 23° C). You should keep the temperature of the water in your fish tank within this range.
You can easily track the temperature of the water in your tank using a thermometer.
And to maintain a constant temperature in your tank you can use an aquarium heater.
I recommend Cobalt Aquatics Flat Neo-Therm Heater. It has a built-in thermostat. You can check it out at Amazon here (link to Amazon)
The ideal ph range for a goldfish tank is between 6.5 to 7.5. However, goldfish can tolerate ph as low as 5 to up to 9.
That being said, you should try to keep the ph in the ideal range.
You can easily measure the ph in your aquarium using an aquarium water test kit.
If the ph of your aquarium water is lower than 6.5 then you can add crushed coral or dolomite gravel in your tank to raise the ph in your tank.
On the other hand, if the ph in your aquarium water is more than 7.5 then to decrease the ph, you can add natural driftwood to your tank.
KH measures the carbonate and bicarbonate in the water. KH acts as a buffer for pH swings.
pH swings stress the fish. That’s why you need some KH in your goldfish tank.
Ideally, your goldfish tank should have KH between 70 to 140 ppm.
You can easily measure the KH in your aquarium using an aquarium water test kit.
More KH in the goldfish tank is not bad for the fish. However, ideally, your tank should not have KH less than 70 ppm.
If the KH in your fish tank is too low (lower than 40 ppm) then you can add commercially sold alkalinity buffer like Seachem Alkaline Buffer (link to Amazon) to raise the KH.
While using this product make sure to follow the instructions mentioned on the bottle!
Water hardness is measured in GH which stands for general hardness.
Ideally, the GH of your goldfish tank water should be around 150 ppm.
You can measure the GH of your aquarium water using an aquarium water test kit.
If you noticed that the GH of your aquarium water is lower than 150 ppm then you can add Seachem Equilibrium (link to Amazon) to raise the GH of the tank water.
On the other hand, if the GH of your aquarium water is more than 150ppm then you can add RO filtered water in your fish tank by doing a partial water change.
Ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate
Ammonia and nitrite are deadly for your goldfish. That’s why your fish tank should not have any ammonia or nitrite levels in your tank.
If your fish tank is properly cycled and you are keeping up with the regular maintenance of your fish tank (more on the maintenance later) then you should not see any ammonia and nitrite levels in your tank.
Nitrates are not as harmful or deadly to goldfish as ammonia and nitrite are.
But too much nitrates in the tank can be deadly for the fish.
Ideally, your fish tank should not contain more than 40 ppm nitrates in the tank.
You can easily measure the ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates in your fish tank using an aquarium water test kit.
To lower the nitrates levels (lower than 40 ppm), you’ll need to do a partial water change.
Goldfish tank maintenance
Keeping up with the regular maintenance of the fish tank is very important to maintain a healthy environment in the fish tank.
Daily maintenance tasks
- On a daily basis, after feeding your goldfish you should remove any uneaten food from the fish tank
- You should also check the temperature of the tank and make sure that it is within the ideal range.
Weekly maintenance tasks
- On a weekly basis, you should siphon the substrate of your fish tank to remove any trapped debris or uneaten food from the substrate
- You should also scrape the inner walls of the tank to remove algae from the glass walls using an algae scraper or razor blade or a credit card can also work.
- Most importantly, you should check all the water parameters in your tank using an aquarium water test kit and make sure that all the parameters are within the ideal ranges.
- On a weekly basis, you should also do a partial water change to keep the nitrate levels in your fish tank under control.
Monthly maintenance tasks
- On a monthly basis, you should clean your aquarium filter. You should make sure to clean the filter the proper way. Or else you’ll lose all the beneficial bacteria present in the filter.
- You should also check if all the equipment are working fine or not. And replace any equipment that seems damaged or are not working properly
Goldfish are very hardy fish and they can tolerate a wide range of water parameters that’s why they are very easy to take care of. However, goldfish can grow pretty large so you’ll need to keep them in a large enough tank.
Also, you’ll need to maintain the water parameters in the tank within the ideal ranges and keep up with the regular maintenance of the tank to keep your goldfish happy and healthy in the tank.
I hope you found the article helpful.
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