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Author Topic: Taming goldfish?  (Read 3511 times)
Nossie
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #60 on: September 09, 2011, 07:20:32 AM »

I agree on the thing with the dogs! I know many, many people who resort to simply hitting the dog over the body when it doesn't listen to the people yapping at it :/ Thing is, they're not making any sense for the dog with the tone of voice they use, so they get confused, and then hit, leading to the dog becoming scared and possibly even aggressive.

I've seen too many dogs here walking around with their tails between their legs and I've heard too many people yelling at them and swearing :/
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fantailer
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #61 on: September 09, 2011, 05:19:05 PM »

Poor dogs Sad
Looks as if you put your fish on your signature. That'll be usefull Smiley.
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Ron H
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #62 on: September 10, 2011, 12:21:19 AM »

your so right Nossie, thats not the way to do it, it only confuses the dog, the trick is to get the dog to respect you as the pack leader... the dog whisperer, Ceaser Milan? ( I think thats right) does it best... that guy can turn any dog around, and fixes many behaviour problems... he is the best thing to happen for dogs in recent time, and most of it is about educating their owners...
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fantailer
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #63 on: September 10, 2011, 04:44:41 AM »

Then there is another show called Its Me Or The Dog. Wink In fact I'm going to watch it now.
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #64 on: September 10, 2011, 09:35:16 AM »

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Thanks...they bite my finger all the time and when I am cleaning the tank they nibble on me . I have tried to get them to swim through my fingers in a circle ... but still nothing. :-) I won't give up I just love these little guys.

I tried the finger bit and after about 15 seconds the shubunkin swam through.

I pick out leaves from time to time and they are used to that and usually swim over. I was watching them slurping up air (there is a shallow spot near some parrots feather, where they sometimes do that) when I put in my hand with the fingers spread, they milled around a bit before Waldo swam through. I think it was just a short cut.

 You may wish to find a spot in your tank where they gather like that and slowly put in your hand. Your fish may already associate your hand with tank cleaning. Do they like that?

 If an animal has no fear of being hurt it can be indifferent or even curious about something not usually in it's habitat. Go slow and see what the fish likes to do. I had a cat that would climb a 7' step ladder for a treat.

  Fishy Jeff
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Goldiegirl
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #65 on: September 10, 2011, 01:21:04 PM »

The fish don't associate my hand with tank cleaning but with food...whenever I have my hand in the water whilst cleaning, they all try to nibble at it!  Cheesy

Nossie is very right about humans not communicating effectively towards the dogs. Canines don't understand cussing anyways.  Undecided they only get confused.
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Nossie
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #66 on: September 11, 2011, 01:48:29 PM »

Ron: Yes, I've watched his show Smiley And mom has a book with his methods and tips too! It's all about understanding and respecting the way dogs communicate and how they work.

FishyJeff: A good way to make the fish swim through hoops/fingers is to hold food on the other side, maybe they'll come through? Smiley
I've read about a trick like this:
1. Teach the fish to nibble a plastic spoon to receive food. Practice this until the fish is used to it (usually in a quarantine tank so you can focus on just one fish)
2. Add a hoop, a really large one so that the fish easily can get through, you can bend the hoop out of... for example a piece of airline with a piece of metal thread through or something similar, just make sure it can't hurt the fish even if it would bump it. Then place the spoon on the other side of the hoop, and of course, reward the fish everytime it nibbles the spoon Smiley
3. Start making the hoop smaller, or using different materials, colors etc. Soon enough you may be able to get them through your  hand too (if they're small enough to fit). As long as the spoon will be there, and they'll know the rules, it shouldn't be a problem.

BUT: It's really important that you do this gradually!! Make sure that the fish is used to the spoon, and not afraid of the hoops, don't go too fast forward. And always practice this regularly so that the fish will remember Smiley
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #67 on: September 12, 2011, 12:37:03 AM »

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Ron: Yes, I've watched his show Smiley And mom has a book with his methods and tips too! It's all about understanding and respecting the way dogs communicate and how they work.

FishyJeff: A good way to make the fish swim through hoops/fingers is to hold food on the other side, maybe they'll come through? Smiley
I've read about a trick like this:
1. Teach the fish to nibble a plastic spoon to receive food. Practice this until the fish is used to it (usually in a quarantine tank so you can focus on just one fish)
2. Add a hoop, a really large one so that the fish easily can get through, you can bend the hoop out of... for example a piece of airline with a piece of metal thread through or something similar, just make sure it can't hurt the fish even if it would bump it. Then place the spoon on the other side of the hoop, and of course, reward the fish everytime it nibbles the spoon Smiley
3. Start making the hoop smaller, or using different materials, colors etc. Soon enough you may be able to get them through your  hand too (if they're small enough to fit). As long as the spoon will be there, and they'll know the rules, it shouldn't be a problem.

BUT: It's really important that you do this gradually!! Make sure that the fish is used to the spoon, and not afraid of the hoops, don't go too fast forward. And always practice this regularly so that the fish will remember Smiley


I don't know why I never Wikipediaed common goldfish before, but check this out:

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Temperament

Common goldfish are social animals who prefer living in groups. They are able to interact with any fish belonging to the same species. With provision of adequate care and attention, common goldfish can become tame. Once familiar with the face of its owner, swimming towards the fish keeper during feeding time can be observed and hand-feeding becomes possible. Small goldfish will normally avoid any form of human contact. However, this fear ceases in a middle-sized and mature goldfish. A full-grown goldfish is more likely to eat directly from the hands of its owner without evident hesitation. While this behavior is welcomed by goldfish owners, it proved problematic in outdoor ponds where predators may eat such friendly prey. Mature goldfish will also explore their surroundings through nibbling or grazing behavior.

If transferred into a tank of other goldfish, a common goldfish would normally try to communicate and familiarize itself with its new tank mates by rubbing up against the body of other fish. The most common introductory gesture would be by swimming side by side with another goldfish with its head facing forward, or by swimming side by side with another goldfish with its head facing the opposite direction, or even by swimming above another goldfish in a perpendicular fashion. Schooling is a common behavior when there is a new fish in the tank. After some time, this schooling behavior eventually ceases, and soon every individual fish will again be swimming and exploring the aquarium on its own. Aggressive behavior is uncommon when a new specimen is introduced into a settled school of goldfish.

Hierarchy during feeding is commonly observed in which the larger goldfish receives most of the food. However, small goldfish may also become aggressive or competitive feeders despite the presence of larger fish which is, in general terms, considered a good sign, as a willingness to feed is indicative of a healthy goldfish.


That covers a lot of what we have talked about here previously, I mention it now not so much because of the tricks (although the bit about using older more experienced fish is helpful) but because I remember you talking about the way the new fish in the tank swam amongst it's new peers. Much of the rest I have observed in my pond.

It's a cool fish!

Fishy Jeff
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Nossie
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #68 on: September 12, 2011, 02:48:15 AM »

That's exactly what I've seen! Only described in a more professional fashion Smiley
Thanks for the link Smiley
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Skwishee
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #69 on: September 12, 2011, 03:21:44 AM »

I was about to post that bit from wikipedia too Cheesy
Really interesting thread guys, I'd quite like to give taming goldfish a go! Imagine a goldfish circus? Now that would be interesting... reminds me of this 'Lion-fish Tamer' idea I had a while ago...

Although one thing that could help with taming are these little packets of bloodworm in jelly, where you feed the fish from this little nozzle shaped part at one end of the packet and it seems to promote the idea of fish eating out of your hand.

Although Lucky doesn't come to the surface yet (I can only assume as Wikipedia states that because his small he'll avoid human contact? It makes me wonder how they were fed/kept before) and I had trouble trying to feed him the blood worm, it just fell out of the packet and sunk down to the bottom and Lucky didn't seem that interested in it. Yet he has no problem eating the plant in the aquarium Tongue

The bloodworm product that I refer to is called 'Tetra Fresh Delica; Whole Bloodworms, in a nutritious vitamin-rich jelly'.
Then on the back of the pack it mentions that if you 'Squeeze the sachet whilst holding the feeding nozzle underwater and your fish will feed from your hand!'
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fantailer
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #70 on: September 12, 2011, 05:13:19 AM »

Yay! A circus without animal abuse!
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Nossie
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #71 on: September 12, 2011, 02:04:01 PM »

Skwishee: If you can get more tetra products, I have a really awesome supplement to recommend Smiley It's called Tetra Natura, and comes with Brine Shrimp, Blood worms and Algae Mix. I use to feed mine with the brine shrimp and algae mix, since I already have frozen blood worms Smiley
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #72 on: September 15, 2011, 05:39:34 PM »

Here is an update:

I went down to check on the pond. The fish were in a playful mood in the shallows.

So I put my hand in with the fingers spread but touching the bottom. Waldo (see sig) the shubunkin immediately swam through rubbing up against the fingers. I moved my hand and Big Orange swam through, also rubbing. Once more and Waldo did the same again.

The fish seem to be growing fast, around 4" long or so. Perhaps they have more confidence since they are bigger. The shubunkin is stockier and seems more aggressive, he is also quicker to "spook" but comes right back. He is the only fish I picked, and I picked him (or her) because he seemed more confident and stronger, always close to the front glass and usually looking out.

What I think is happening is the fish want to get to know me better. So they are doing what fish do with a newbie, they swim over and rub up against. I think they are curious about me, earlier today I was no more than a foot away from the pond looking in and they were lined up looking back at me.

On another note, I've been looking for a sixth fish. What I've seen in the tanks is rarely good. At Walmart, the goldish are often sluggish, if not dead.  I got Waldo there, and at that time they all looked healthy then. The Petsmarts seem to do better, but they have limited variety, Walmart has the best variety. Petco has nice koi, but little more than feeder goldfish. I've been to a few of each of the big boxes. Haven't stumbled across a LFS yet.

My impression is that of the Big Boxes, Walmart has the best variety. They get restocked every week or two. Petsmart has the most knowledge and Petco hires id*ots in their fish department.

YMMV, and probably will.

Fishy Jeff

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Thanks...they bite my finger all the time and when I am cleaning the tank they nibble on me . I have tried to get them to swim through my fingers in a circle ... but still nothing. :-) I won't give up I just love these little guys.

I tried the finger bit and after about 15 seconds the shubunkin swam through.

I pick out leaves from time to time and they are used to that and usually swim over. I was watching them slurping up air (there is a shallow spot near some parrots feather, where they sometimes do that) when I put in my hand with the fingers spread, they milled around a bit before Waldo swam through. I think it was just a short cut.

 You may wish to find a spot in your tank where they gather like that and slowly put in your hand. Your fish may already associate your hand with tank cleaning. Do they like that?

 If an animal has no fear of being hurt it can be indifferent or even curious about something not usually in it's habitat. Go slow and see what the fish likes to do. I had a cat that would climb a 7' step ladder for a treat.

  Fishy Jeff

I tried the finger bit and after about 15 seconds the shubunkin swam through.



  Fishy Jeff
« Last Edit: September 15, 2011, 05:42:30 PM by Fishy Jeff » Logged
Nicole
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #73 on: September 15, 2011, 05:47:59 PM »

Google or YouTube search "Comet the Educated Goldfish".  Now that's one talented fish!  You can also order the training wand from their site.
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Summer Time
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #74 on: September 15, 2011, 10:06:58 PM »

I fed my fish from my fingers for the first time this past weekend.   Cheesy

They have been wanting to do this for a few months, but I wasn't even thinking about trying it until I read this thread.  I held some large flakes at the water's surface, and they came up and took it from my hand right away.  My goldfish are about 2 1/2".  It's so cute to interact with them this way.
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fantailer
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #75 on: September 16, 2011, 03:34:54 AM »

Nicole they have a vidoe of Comet the Educated Goldfish doing soccer, football and fetch on animal planet's website!
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Skwishee
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #76 on: September 16, 2011, 02:56:50 PM »

I can't find anything on Comet the educated goldfish Embarrassed

That's interesting to hear about your fish, Fishyjeff  Smiley I can't wait till Lucky becomes a bit friendlier. He has started looking at me when I'm talking to him sometimes  Cheesy

Also thanks for the tip Nossie Grin On the subject of food, I discovered today that Lucky likes brocolli, put a little bit in his tank last night and came home this evening from work to find the whole thing gone! XD Although I'm a little worried he may have over fed by eating all of it, so might fast him for a day just in case.... Is it possible that his over eaten, even if it was something that he must have been feeding on for a long period of time?

I was watching him nibble the brocolli at breakfast and most of it was in tact and that was around 8/9am, I then got home around 8pm to see it was gone.
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #77 on: September 16, 2011, 06:41:17 PM »

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I can't find anything on Comet the educated goldfish Embarrassed

I was watching him nibble the brocolli at breakfast and most of it was in tact and that was around 8/9am, I then got home around 8pm to see it was gone.

I tried the broccoli.

Waldo, tried it right off the bat, and spit it out. So did little orange. Big Orange found it editable but not with relish. Red Dot (tancho) ate a little bit. Whitey just looked on.

So. Nobody really loved it and two fish threw it up. So, fish and people regard broccoli the same way!

Fishy Jeff

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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #78 on: September 16, 2011, 11:15:50 PM »

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I was watching him nibble the brocolli at breakfast and most of it was in tact and that was around 8/9am, I then got home around 8pm to see it was gone.


Broccoli #12 on the household food list.

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If you're feeding your fish only flakes, constipation and illnesses are common.

Household foods

Ask any goldfish expert and die hard goldfish owners, what is the best type of food that will make shore your fish is healthy and happy. They will say: fresh fruits and vegetables. Daily fresh fruits and vegetables will prevent constipation and illness, give a variety of vitamins, minerals and amino acids your goldfish needs, provide a balanced diet and make you happy knowing your fish will stay in better condition.

Top 14 household foods your fish needs:

1. Peas - helps at digestion
2. Letuce
3. Spinach
4. Zucchini
5. Carrots
6. Cucumbers
7. Apples
8. Grapes
9. Garlic
10. Pieces of Orange ( for vitamin C )
11. Boiled Rice
12. Broccoli
13. Corn
14. Beans

Note Nossies Guide to preparing Veggies:
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How do you tell if a fish has indigestion? It flips over!

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Sounds like digestive trouble. If a goldfish eats too fast and/or overeats, it can develop indigestion and gas in the belly causes it to float upside down. Sometimes it is from swim bladder failure. Diet change is a good solution for both causes of "flipover disease".

Goldfish have digestive systems that require lots of fiber. Cut back on regular food by about 25% and give him chunks of cooked peas every day until he no longer swims that way. Feed the peas at least a couple of times a week after that. It is good for the other fish too. They also like cooked green beans, romaine lettuce bits, sliced cucumber, sliced squash. These green foods can be left in the tank to nibble on for several hours without fouling the tank.

At Your Service;
Chris Robbins



Myself, this is all new. My fish are growing quite fast. Red Dot is about 5" long, ranging down to whitey at half that. It seems to me they were about half that size when they first went in the pond a few months ago. I've been giving them some Aqueon Goldfish granules. What I notice is that it takes them a few minutes, more or less still, while they "digest" that. I don't feed them for more than half a minute. Otherwise grazing around the pond rarely requires a "lunch" break. Usually they bottom feed, I rarely see them nibbling on the parrots feather anymore. The no feed temp limit is 50F for koi, not sure about goldfish but that would seem to be similar.

Fishy Jeff
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Skwishee
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #79 on: September 17, 2011, 02:14:18 AM »

Well Lucky hasn't shown any problems this morning, certainly no swimming upside down!
I think I'll give him some fish flakes tonight and I had some peas out to defrost for him for tomorrow anyway Smiley

But thanks for that top twelve list!

Your fish sound huge Smiley They must have so much fun in that pond, do you get many problems with predators?
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Nossie
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #80 on: September 17, 2011, 03:45:16 AM »

In general, I'm completely against flakes. I've fed my goldies pellets since day 1, and when I bought my betta (after having these kids for a year), I tried to give them some of his flakes (normal, color-enhancing tropical fish flakes)... and they couldn't eat them to save their lives. Their mouths were far too big for the ridiculous flakes (even if I didn't even try crushing the flakes first) and they just seemed to stick to their lips or to the surface.

This is why I'll instead the feeding them pellets in various sizes instead Smiley
Goldfish can see pellets much better and they're easier to catch since they are round and better to get a grip on!
Which is why I have roughly 7 different kinds of pellets, ranging from sizes of just 1 millimeter to almost 5 mm so that all fish can get their share of foods Smiley Two out of those types are sinking (and do they love looking for them <3), I also soak some of the pellets in garlic oil (or Garlic guard by Seachem).

There are simply so many alternatives superior to flakes when it comes to feeding goldfish, so I don't see a need to even mention flakes in a "feed it to them sometimes" kind of way. Note, that the goldfish will swallow more air eating the flakes as well, given their shape.
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #81 on: September 17, 2011, 06:37:57 AM »

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Your fish sound huge Smiley They must have so much fun in that pond, do you get many problems with predators?


Well, not huge, but heading in that direction.  I suspect they will be the better part of a foot long in a year or two. Contrary to the fishbowl concept of a small fish, they are large fish. Not as large as cousin koi, but big enough that all the tanks in this group are large.

As far as predators, the pond is bird netted overhead and on one side to keep the leaves out. There are trees overhead and the pond is tucked  sort of behind the house. I have no local birds that naturally prefer fish though.

The obvious predator, the cats, have no interest in the fish. Most of the raptors (hawks) work in open spaces. I think the same is true for owls. That leaves possums and raccoons. I had a big problem with possums coming in the cat door and eating up the cat food. The cats largely either ignored them, or worse, cuddled up against them. It took a while to relocate the possums, but they are now gone.

Raccoons would seem to be the big worry. They are very smart, smart enough, to unlock simple latches. The cats don't like them but are unable to fight them as they are too big and strong. Fortunately I've seen no coons lately.

If the pond were in the open, as most ponds are, I would probably have more trouble. As it is now, there is no predator problem. Not that the fish couldn't be easy targets with their curiosity.

As far as feeding, I think Nossie is right to stay away from flakes. The pellets are closer to what they would normally eat. In my case, since the pond is a bit wild, I have a lot of the wild fish diet and an environment which they are suited for. Goldfish like some murkiness and a softer bottom to  root in. Suitable for a pond, not a tank.

I'm a bit wild myself!

Fishy Jeff
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Skwishee
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #82 on: September 17, 2011, 07:39:31 AM »

Yeah, I think with Lucky I'm quite fortunate, he never eats flakes from the surface and instead quite likes to chase after them in the tank as they float down, so I don't think theres any risk of him gulping air Smiley

Haha thats funny about your cats cuddling up to possums XD Cute things.
I imagine racoons aren't like the one in Pochahontas then  Wink Your wildlife sounds so interesting, nothing that exciting much here in Wales!

I remember my neighbors who have a pond had a net over it and one day I heard this squaking, looking out the window I saw a magpie had flown down to the pond, tried to take a snap at something in the pond and his beak had actually been cut and caught in  the net! I couldn't believe it, we rescued it and the RSPCA came to take it away, I can only hope it was okay Sad
I had no idea fish nets could be so dangerous!
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Goldiegirl
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #83 on: September 17, 2011, 10:17:33 AM »

Racoons are terrible when it comes to fish! I had 4 fish devoured by racoons in my pond...they peeled back the screening with their tiny hands (it was mauled the next morning) and then wait for a fish to swim by....they are by far (well, besides snakes) the worst predator I have around my fish. They are nocturnal, so I can't ever scare them off too.  Undecided
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Summer Time
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #84 on: September 17, 2011, 07:05:00 PM »

My goldfish get a variety of foods, but they still love their flakes too.  I don't float the flakes, it's too hard for them to grab hold of.  First I get them wet in some tank water and then pour them into the tank, and they sink right away, moving in the current, and my fish enjoy chasing the pieces as they eat them.   Smiley  And the flakes have some good vitamins in them.
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #85 on: September 17, 2011, 08:10:49 PM »

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Racoons are terrible when it comes to fish! I had 4 fish devoured by racoons in my pond...they peeled back the screening with their tiny hands (it was mauled the next morning) and then wait for a fish to swim by....they are by far (well, besides snakes) the worst predator I have around my fish. They are nocturnal, so I can't ever scare them off too.  Undecided

Where do your fish spend the night?

I think mine head to the bottom of the pond when it gets dark. Sometimes in the morning some of them haven't "woken" yet and I simply can't find them. As I understand it, they do rest, when it is dark. My pond is not deep, but the depths are dark enough that I can't see into them even in the day.

Can you see your fish at night?

Fishy Jeff
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Summer Time
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #86 on: September 17, 2011, 10:04:22 PM »

I'm reviewing the Top 14 list, which is a great list, but I'm surprised to see corn on it.  I've read conflicting reports about corn and how it can be harmful to fish.  But I don't know if there's any conclusive evidence.
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Fishy Jeff
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #87 on: September 17, 2011, 10:37:30 PM »

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I'm reviewing the Top 14 list, which is a great list, but I'm surprised to see corn on it.  I've read conflicting reports about corn and how it can be harmful to fish.  But I don't know if there's any conclusive evidence.

It is apparently hard to digest.

Corn is a popular filler and as such it is probably as corn gluten and corn meal. Perhaps a a bit of the whole corn is not bad.  Sort of like how the refined white bread is not as nutritious as the whole grain or for that matter, the bag it comes in. But I really don't know and gave you a bit of karma for the observation.

Fishy Jeff
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Summer Time
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #88 on: September 17, 2011, 10:54:33 PM »

Thanks!  I agree, it could be bad for their digestive tract.  This might be why some fishing areas don't want you to use corn as bait.
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Nossie
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Re: Taming goldfish?
« Reply #89 on: September 18, 2011, 03:43:09 AM »

Boiled rice isn't the best thing to be giving goldfish either. One should by all means avoid this kind of foods (oatmeals, rise and corn among them) even in their pellets. It can be hard, but it will make for much healthier fish!
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