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Author Topic: Hello from Bill and Ted  (Read 1537 times)
hellsbells
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Hello from Bill and Ted
« on: August 15, 2010, 08:39:03 AM »

Hi folks, just got myself a 'starter' kit yesterday, two common goldfish, large bowl, gravel, food etc.  Was it salt I had to put in?  There was also dechlorinator.  I've been thinking about getting some fish for a while, they're so great to wash but want to start small.  I'm a little bit lost!  The guy in the pet shop said I should only need to change the water every 4-6 weeks but after a day the water seems to be getting a tiny bit cloudy.  He said to feem them a pinch 2- 3 times a day, I think I'm going for 2x.  The seem happy enough, I want to get some more toys and plants tomorrow. 

I was always told that fish can't move backwards, but they do! 

I want to keep them for a long time, so can you offer any advice?  Are there any simple filters you can get for a small-ish plastic bowl?

Thanks,

Helen
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Nossie
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #1 on: August 15, 2010, 11:58:33 AM »

First of all, forget everything they've told you in the pet shop. It's bad enough that they sold you a bowl for two goldfish.
Anyways, You have to buy a bigger tank for these guys if you want to keep them longer than a month (or less!) get yourself a nice 20 gallon tank Smiley And buy a good filter! Get yourself a filter rated for a 40 gallon. Goldfish grow incredibly fast, and they grow big!! As of now, your water is cloudy, because your fish are poisoning themselves with their waste.

Buy yourself a test kit for pH, ammonia, nitrite and nitrate as well! You need to test the water to make sure everything is in order, especially if you notice your fish acting strange. I'll explain more further in the thread Smiley

You might need a bio filter booster, because the tank will need to cycle for it to be safe for your fish. In short, cycling the tank means that it will go through the nitrogen cycle, where the beneficial bacteria will be established to deal with the waste of your fish. This should take about 6 weeks all in all, but with a bio filter booster, it could go faster Smiley The cycle starts with high levels of ammonia, that you deal with by doing 10-30% water changes, you need to test the water daily during this time to know when to change the water. After this, nitrite will show up, you should still change a small amount of water when the values get toxic! Finally, nitrates will show up, and then you'll only have to change water once a week Smiley 4-6 weeks is far, far too long between a water change!

For water changes, you might need a siphon to clean the gravel with, it's just like a funny "glass" on the end of a hose, all plastic, cheap stuff!

Buy more food. Buy a good quality staple pellet for your fish, and some freeze-dried bloodworms or tubifex. It's incredibly important with a varied diet and good nutrition to keep your fish healthy.

If you'll follow these simple points, your goldfish will live for 20 years or more Cheesy

(For the other forum-peeps: Feel free to fill in things I forgot!)
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2010, 12:31:12 PM »

Thankyou!  Looks like I may have made a little bit of a mistake.  I can't really afford to buy a proper large tank just now.  I'll just have to make sure I get as much of the bits and pieces as I can to keep them healthy while I save up!  In fairness it is quite a large bowl, if I keep on top of the water changes they should be ok for a while.  They keep swimming to the top and blowing out little bubbles.  Ooops just spotted the typos in my first post!  There's a big pet shop near where I work so I'll pay a visit tomorrow, cheers for the advice!
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2010, 04:42:55 PM »

Hi Helen, first WELCOME to the forum.

I think I will never comprehend how those pet shop people DARE to sell a bowl for two goldfish.

How big is it anyway? I mean how many litres does it hold?

Your fish keeping swimming to the top means they are gasping for oxygen.
They need an aerator or airstone, plenty of room to swim, as Nossie said at least 20 gallons. You may trade the bowl back to that store and PLEASE get that tank asap if you want to keep them happy and for a long time. Also as Nossie already mentioned very good filtration.

Normally the tank or in your case the bowl should have been cycled too, before adding fish. This is another big blue the pet shop made. The water is getting cloudy because it starts cycling. This puts lots of stress on the fish.

And you must do plenty of partial waterchanges.  For starters also get "Prime" to detoxify Ammonia, Nitrites and Nitrates, otherwise your fishies will suffer bad burns and may die.

But anyway, we are here now to help you through the given situation too. So please keep us updated with everything happening.

According to the test kit I recommend the API MasterTestKit for freshwater, also waterconditioner to remove chlorines and chloramines is very important and "Stability" from Seachem which is beneficial bacteria to break down the Ammonia into Nitrite and  then Nitrites into Nitrates.
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Nicole
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #4 on: August 15, 2010, 09:22:16 PM »

What might help with the bowl situation is to fill it only about halfway or a little more to maximize the area that oxygen can get into the water.  You want a really wide surface at the top.  I think there are some little filters you can get to fit in a bowl.  Also get some ammonia neutralizer and some Nite-Out, which has good bacteria, to minimize the cycling effects.  I reccomend some water testing strips as well.  If you can't find these on your own, ask at the pet store.  Oh, and live plants are good for helping the water quality, and you might want an airstone for additional oxygen.  Seems like a lot, but most of these are cheap.  If you had to choose, though, do save up for a tank.
This is my last post of the day for awhile, folks.  Time to get some sleep before the new baby wakes up and demands food. Wink
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Nossie
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2010, 04:10:20 AM »

Depending on the size of your bowl, you should be able to keep them there for a few months if you test the water every day and change some whenever necessary.

But if I were you, I might just go buy myself a big plastic "tank". You know, like those big, transparent storage boxes Cheesy I saw one in the size of 20 gallons around here! That way, they would have a good home until you'd be able to get the "real" 20 gallon Smiley
Or any size of them plastic boxes as long as it's bigger than your bowl and closer to 20 gal Wink
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Andrea
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #6 on: August 16, 2010, 05:44:49 AM »

Everyone has already covered everything Smiley When I first got my goldfish I was giving them in one of those starter kits with a bowl. Not your typical bowl, it was probably about 15 litres. But still definitely not enough room for goldfish. Just letting you know so you don't feel bad as it's not your fault Smiley
It's time to do some researching just to expand on what everyone has already told you, maybe seem if you can borrow some books on goldfish from your local library. Though be careful of the older ones which are terribly outdated.
I agree with Nossie that now it might be better to go get any sorta of plastic 'tank. I was keeping my goldfish in a guniea pig tank thingy at one point. As long as the plastic is not to thin or weak!
Getting them nice and healthy with a good diet would be great right now, just be careful not to overfeed.
Oh and one last thing I'm not sure if anyone has said it yet but they are gasping at the top of the tank because there would not be much oxygen in the bowl. See if you can buy an air pump and stone. They are relatively cheap and will help alot and can be kept even when you upgrade.
Best of luck Smiley
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2010, 12:24:53 PM »

Hi all, thanks for the advice!  I feel so bad for the poor little blighters but I just can't buy a big tank right now.  The bow is probably about 25 litres at a rough guess.  I thought there was a pet shop near my work but there isn't.  I'm definitely going to get one of the testing kits, an airstone, a filter of sorts and some plants at the first available opportunity.  They seem quite happy at the moment.  I think I'll do another partial water change tomorrow - maybe leave it out overnight and get the chlorine out and do it after work tomorrow.  They're so cute, I hope I can look after them!  What food would y'all reccomend?  It hasn't got any cloudier, I'm wondering if I maybe didn't clean the gravel as much as I should've.  I haven't seen them gasping today!  Thanks again, will keep you all posted!
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2010, 04:32:11 PM »

The cloudy water means that the beneficial bacteria want to find their home in there. They will live on substrate and in the filter. It is a signe that your bowl is cycling.

But please take Nossies advice and get yourself a  clear plastic box as she recommended until you can afford to buy a proper 20g tank
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Nossie
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2010, 03:35:18 AM »

I feed mine with Hikari goldfish staple Smiley And also Goldfish Gold (color enhancing) and Fancy Goldfish, by the same brand. But I think they'd be fine without the last kind, as that's especially for fancy goldfish Wink It's a high-quality food, and it's very good for a basic diet Smiley If you can, you should buy some blood worms, freeze-dried, frozen or packed in gel! Protein is important for young goldfish Smiley

You don't have to leave your water out over night if you have a water conditioner anyway, you just have to add the proper dose of that, and all the chlorine and everything will be gone Cheesy Just in case, it should be added in the bucket, before adding the water to the tank.

And I would also like you to buy the test kit asap!! It's almost crucial if you want your fish to survive!
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Andrea
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #10 on: August 17, 2010, 06:29:48 AM »

Sinking pellets are always best for the staple food. But I feed my comet pellets, frozen peas, frozen brine shrimp, algae wafers, frozen goldfish food, pears, cucumber and an assortment of other fruits and vegetables. For now though because of water which is probably extremely high with ammonia and will be before it cycles, don't feed too much. You don't want to add to the ammonia levels by left over good or excess waste from the fish. So just also be careful with that Smiley
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Nossie
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2010, 03:21:07 AM »

Right! Andrea reminded me of an important point:

During the first weeks of the cycle, you should feed only a little bit of food (think 5 pellets per fish/a tiny pinch of flakes) once a day (preferably in the morning, that way they'll get used to their feeding times Smiley
And it would be good if you continued feeding this amount until you'll be able to upgrade! Otherwise you may have some water quality problems faster than you'd want to see them!
Don't be afraid to put some cucumber there or some freeze-dried blood worms Wink But still very small amounts! Once a day!

When you have your bigger tank, it's good if you'd feed them between 3-5 times a day, but the more often you'd feed, the smaller amount is needed! I use to feed twice a day + a snack in between Wink Works wonders and my fish are growing nicely! Cheesy
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #12 on: August 18, 2010, 01:14:58 PM »

Hi all, thanks for the advice again.  The water has actually cleared a little in the last couple of days.  The murkiness may have been off the gravel.  I'll be stocking up on all the test kits etc at the weekend and scoping out ebay etc for tanks.  They genuinely seem quite chipper for the moment!
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Nossie
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #13 on: August 18, 2010, 02:04:38 PM »

Sounds great! Smiley Hey, it could be a good idea to check craigslist as well! I heard there're usually many cheap tanks there Smiley
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2010, 12:02:13 PM »

So, went for a trip to a decent petshop.  I was very tempted by some of the tanks but I really need to save first because I want to buy a decent one.  I got a filter, some oxygen tablets, an aquarium kit and some live plants.  Not a huge amount of room but at least the water will be clean until I sort out a good tank!
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goldfishluver12
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #15 on: August 21, 2010, 12:15:19 PM »

HI! im also new here too and my pet shop owner also sold me a small fish bowl to go with my goldfish and they died within two weeks. After that i upgraded to a 10 gallon tank and i now own two fantail goldfish and there doing great. I know your suppose to have a 10 gallon tank for every goldfish but i have two in a 10 gallont tank so i think that can be a myth. I also got great advise from the pet center in Walmart. They seemed to know a lot more then regular pet shops!
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #16 on: August 21, 2010, 12:29:11 PM »

Hiya!  Yeah I went to Pets at Home here in the UK and the guy (happened to be the store manager) was super nice and really helpful.  Within a couple of months I'll have a good soze tank, just need to do it the right way and not panic buy something that ends up being too small!  I've had mine a week now and they seem chipper enough!
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #17 on: August 21, 2010, 04:06:18 PM »

It is not a myth to have 10 gallons per goldfish, the bigger the better, especially for the fast swimmers, the streamline shaped ones like commons, comets and shubunkins.
I had my 2 comets first in a 6 l tank for about 1 week:(.... advised by some pet shop staff... Angry I didn't know much either when started to keep GF )then we bought a 10 g tank. They were fine in there for about 3-4 month. After that time they started to behave funny, dashing around and bumping into the glass and decorations.
So hubby and me were lucky to get a 2nd hand tank 150l, ( a pet shop staff told us about a lady who wanted to sell her tank ) restored it quickly and now they are the happiest fish I've ever seen.  Grin  And they are now about 15 cm big, when we got them they were only about 5-6 cm small.

SO perhaps if you keep the small and eggshaped variety in 10 g and do excellent maintenance it may be fine and it can be done.

hellsbells: so you may ask in pet shops too if they know sbdy who wants to sell their tank, also have a look in the daily newspaper, of course ebay is good too to seach and as Nossie mentioned try craigslist or the tradingpost if there are those options in UK.
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Nossie
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #18 on: August 22, 2010, 04:59:25 AM »

goldfishluver12: Keeping two fish in a 10 gallon isn't going to work out for you. In the long run, you'll have problems with the water quality, your fish may be surviving, but not thriving. You'll end up stunting their growth and making them sick. So really, try looking around for a 20 or 30 gallon asap. There are so many cheap tanks out there, that it's a waste for you to make your fish suffer for it.
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #19 on: August 22, 2010, 03:58:10 PM »

WTF?  Ted just ate Bill's poop as it floated away from him.  Does this often happen?  They've been fed often enough - do they just struggle to recognise what's food and what isn't?  Yeeeuccchh!!
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #20 on: August 22, 2010, 04:05:27 PM »

This happens sometimes,   Tongue but most times they spit it out pretty quick, so nothing to worry about  Wink
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Andrea
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #21 on: August 23, 2010, 02:54:43 AM »

Haha of course it happens. Their poo is often the same colour as their food so no wonder they get confused Tongue But as Hanna said they often spit it out straight away, I don't think it would be to harumful if they didn't.
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #22 on: August 27, 2010, 03:10:35 PM »

So, I got a filter and plant last week, but they've got a bit sick.  I've got some Melafix to sort them out and while they're hopefully healing in the bowl....there's a 64 Litre tank maturing as we speak with a belter of a filter.  It's a Fish Box tropical tank for when I decide to diversify (and when Bill and Ted go in my Uncle's pond).  Very excited!  Looks lush!  Whoop whoop!  Pray for Bill and Ted please.  Shall post more in Health and Illness.
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #23 on: August 27, 2010, 05:17:01 PM »

Wow, all exciting.
I keep fingers crossed for Bill and Ted
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #24 on: August 28, 2010, 04:42:17 AM »

Ted passed away during the night.
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Andrea
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #25 on: August 28, 2010, 04:45:24 AM »

I'm so sorry to hear that especially as you have been working hard to improve their lives Sad But I have faith that Bill will survive and live a happy life in his new tank when it is ready. Keep a close on Bill.
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #26 on: August 28, 2010, 06:51:00 AM »

  Sad ooooohh NO, so sad Cry 
hope Bill will survive

RIP little Ted
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #27 on: August 28, 2010, 09:18:28 AM »

Came home this afternoon to find Bill gone too.... Cry  He'd seemed to perk up a bit but.....it's very sad.

Well, I've learned a lot through you guys, thanks.  I feel bette equipped now to move forward with keeping fish.  When my new tank is populated in a few more days I'll post a pic.  Don't know whether to stick with goldfish or go tropical - the aquarium came with a heater. 

Rest assured I shall never use the original shop again. 
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Hanna
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #28 on: August 28, 2010, 07:12:06 PM »

Oh no, not again, hellsbells I cry Cry
So sorry for your loss  Sad  Sad  Sad  Sad  Sad

RIP little Bill


why not have a new start with goldies. you know what to do, how to set up a tank and let it cycle.
If you go ahead and eventually buy fish, find a petshop which is clean, clean, clean and the fish in there are happy and they'll wiggle at you when you look at them. get the most active ones

Good Luck
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hellsbells
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Re: Hello from Bill and Ted
« Reply #29 on: August 28, 2010, 08:01:55 PM »

My tank is cycling, I really fancy more goldies, they're sopretty, but I'd love loads of fish too....have a few days to decide.  Might go goldies, pass them on to my uncle who has a pond and then go tropical!
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