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FAQs About Goldfish Systems: Plantings

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Related FAQs:  Goldfish Systems 1, Goldfish Systems 2, Goldfish Systems 3, Goldfish Systems 4, Goldfish Systems 5, Goldfish Systems 6, Goldfish Systems 7, Goldfish Systems 8, Goldfish Systems 9, & FAQs on Goldfish System: Tanks (Size, Shape...), Lighting/Tops, Decor, GravelHeating/Temperature, Aeration/Circulation, Filtration, Water Quality (Algae, Smell, Cloudiness... Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, Nitrogen Cycling), Maintenance, Trouble/Fixing, & Goldfish 1, Goldfish Behavior, Goldfish Compatibility, Goldfish Feeding, Goldfish DiseaseGoldfish Breeding/Reproduction

Plant material is a very good idea to include... for food, to aid in biological filtration, to offer cover... to overall mediate water quality changes in the favor of your livestock.

Cool water species are best... e.g.: Anacharis, Elodea are tasty, edible... Myriophyllums (Parrotfeather) and Ceratophyllum (Hornwort) are not so palatable.

Anacharis in aquariums, and as food for goldfish  2/29/08 Hi! Just wanted to let you know that Anacharis is no longer being sold in Michigan. It's illegal because of the invasive nature of the plant.  I found that out when looking for a good plant to help a year-old goldfish which has developed a swim bladder problem. He was in a pond from spring - fall and did well, but has had problems in the aquarium since then. (I do feed 'sinking' pellets as well as flakes.)  So far, Sunkist is the only one who has had tummy troubles, and I'm hoping to keep it that way! So glad I found this website, it has loads of good information! Thanks, Karen <If you can't get hold of Anacharis, then other similar species will do well -- Elodea, Egeria, Cabomba, etc. Plants *are* important for Goldfish, and neglecting this aspect of their diet will end with problems! Other green foods include tinned peas, blanched lettuce (especially curly lettuce), Sushi Nori, etc. Daphnia also work well, and you can buy these frozen as well as live. Pellets and flakes, by themselves, just aren't good enough in the long term. Cheers, Neale.>

Upgrading My Freshwater Goldfish Tank to Real Plants    1/19/06 Hello! I have a question about freshwater plants. A few months back I was having major problems as a first-time fish owner. (I didn't exactly plan on getting fish, I won them at a festival) Anyways, a lot of my goldfish were getting diseased and dying. <Very, too common> In the end I lost 6 fish, and I only have 3 left (Which at the moment are healthy and spunky) Before my mom and I couldn't keep the dangerous chemicals and bacteria (like ammonia, and the dangerous algae) at a low level. We never really had a problem with the PH levels. After putting the last surviving fish into a small emergency bowl (3 gallons) for about 2 months, we finally did research and seasoned the tank like we should have done. (Again, I never planned on getting fish, just kind of happened). <This is how I "got started"> Well anyways, now the ecosystem is chemically balanced and my fish are happy. (been this way for about a month and a half) And we were thinking about replacing all the plastic plants with real ones. I was wondering if this is a good idea at this point. Should I wait longer? <No need to wait further> If not, what kind of plants should I introduce to the ecosystem? (I was thinking of bringing in one plant at a time, not all at once, is that a good idea?) Thanks for your help! Sarah <Some of the best are "grass" types, that are generally just used floating rather than planted/rooted. Elodea/Egeria, Hornwort... Other tough plants that may not be outright consumed (goldfish are largely herbivorous), are Sagittarias, Ceratopteris... Other cool-coldwater plants are detailed on WWM. Bob Fenner>

Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets....  10/10/2005 Hi <Hello.> I wrote a while ago about my large (body is 3.5") fantail, Lola, who was just staring off into space all the time. <Sabrina with you, today - please for future reference include previous correspondences when possible, as there are a number of us answering questions, and plenty of questions being answered; without the name of the crewmember or the previous correspondence, we have no idea where to route replies or continued correspondences.> Everything checked out OK with water quality and Lola's health. I started feeding peas and she gradually became more active -- and obsessed with eating. <Sounds like a goldfish!> You guys suggested I get her a dither fish. Today I put a medium (body 2") fantail goldfish in with Lola. Lola immediately started chasing the new fish. So I fed them both peas --at the same time. Lola chased the new fish aggressively until it barfed up the food it had just eaten.  <Mm, it probably didn't actually regurgitate, just spat it out.> Lola immediately ate the barf.  <My guess is the new fish did not know quite what to do with the peas yet, and Lola just relished this uncertainty. Give it some time.> Now Lola is only mildly annoyed with the new fish. The aggressive chasing has stopped; more like a moderate teasing now. The new fish is not happy.  <Give it some time.> The dorsal fin is not clamped however. Is this aggression about not feeding them enough?  <Possibly, but could just be even friendly. Or stranger yet, the newcomer may be female, and Lola may be a mature male. Again, give it some time.> I give the larger Lola 3 peas a day. Is it about territory?  <Unlikely.... goldfish don't tend to be territorial.> They are in a 20 gallon tank with filter. Is the tank too small? <Will be in the long run.> Is this just "getting to know you" behavior? <Likely.> Is Lola afraid she will not get enough food with a new friend in the tank? <Perhaps.> Would a munchie plant help the situation? If so what kind? <An excellent idea. I would recommend Egeria/elodea/Anacharis.... A few species of plants fall under these names; all grow similarly and goldfish love to eat 'em.> Should I separate them permanently if it continues? <Again, give it some time.> Should I also feed them frozen brine shrimp? <If you like.> Besides green veggies and rice, what else would round out their diet well? I read so much about their digestive problems and have eliminated the dry food (even soaked dry food). <Sounds like you're doing great so far. Some frozen brine would be okay to add to this, or frozen bloodworms once in a while.> Do they need protein from other than plant sources? Can they eat Abelmoschus manihot leaves? (It's a human food crop in the tropics and loaded with protein.) <I have absolutely no idea whatsoever. I thank you for mentioning this plant, though; I just had an opportunity to learn about Abelmoschus - apparently okra is in this genus! How neat! But, again, I have no idea whatsoever if A. manihot leaves can be eaten by fish.> Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Tell me what to do and I will do it!  <Lola is indeed a lucky fish to have you as a pal.> Lola is a family pet and I hate to see her being so mean to her new friend--such as it is. <Give it some time; hopefully this will sort itself out in a week or two.> As usual I thank you for your valuable advice and for your incredible web site! <And thank you very much for these kind words, Steve! I do hope all goes well with this.> Steve Erickson <Wishing you, Lola, and the newcomer well, -Sabrina>

Whatever Lola Wants, Lola Gets.... - II - 10/12/05 Hi, Sabrina <Hello, again.> Thanks again for your advice. As you said, the situation is quieting down.  <Ah, good.> In fact, Lola is back to staring off into space, motionless. The new fish, Golda, doesn't understand Lola's behavior and tries to rouse Lola into swimming around. I expect she'll be back to her old self soon.  <Yes, they will sort things out with time.> It's amazing that she has these emotional phases. But that's why we all care for her so much!  <And a good reason, too.> Regarding A. manihot: I can send you some seeds to grow the plant. It's very easy to grow in any climate.  <If this can be done legally, I'd absolutely love to do so. Where are you from?> Right now most of the garden is fading but the 7 foot Abelmoschus is still blooming.  <Wow!> Perhaps you guys could experiment with feeding the leaves and flowers--which taste like lettuce-- to goldfish. With its high protein content, I suspect that it would be an excellent food source for them. <Certainly a worthwhile idea!!> Thanks again. <And thank you, as well.> Steve <All the best, -Sabrina>

Plants for Low Oxygen Levels?Hi.. >>Greetings. I have a 3" fantail in a 5-10g hexagonal tank. >>It's a good idea to know which it is, as one is small, the other is even smaller. If five gallons, PAINFULLY small for a goldfish. The surface water has a good current, but as the tank is so deep, I worry about O2 levels at the bottom (I have lost fish in this tank before with suspected oxygen deprivation). >>VERY unlikely in such a small tank. It would have to essentially be a tube a few inches across for low O2 saturation to be the real issue, and it would just be plain cruel to put a goldfish into something like that. I have a pump that I can use to help oxygenate the water, but the noise the pump generates really grates on my nerves. >>Please understand, there is only one place where the O2-CO2 exchange can take place, and that is at the water's surface. If you have good surface agitation, you have good O2-CO2 exchange (having O2 saturation isn't enough, the CO2 has to be released, too). This can be accomplished with a H.O.T. power filter or similar that is set up to create good turbulence. So, my question is (I'll warn you now that it's three-fold) would a live plant help with getting oxygen into the water? >>Yep. It would also help with utilization of nitrogenous wastes, more likely the true cause of the fish deaths.  If so, what kind of plant would you recommend? I don't mind if the plant gets eaten, provided it doesn't harm the fish, as it would be replaceable. Last, would getting a plant also mean that I would require a stronger light source in/near the tank setup? >>Heck, with a tank so small you could actually root some pothos, arrowhead, or similar houseplants in it quite easily. Arrowhead will actually grow underwater, but if in a low light situation will grow leaves above the surface. Currently, the tank is in the opposite corner from the window in a very well lit room and has a black hood to prevent any fish acrobatics! >>If you have a fancy goldfish, no acrobatics can happen. You do, so, no worries, leave the top open. I've never had a live plant in a tank before, so any advice is appreciated. Thanks! Kay >>Well, Kay, if you keep houseplants, then take a few cuttings and root them. They'll explode with the fertilizer. Otherwise, without at least a bit of better lighting you'll have to stick to those aquatic plants that don't mind lower light levels. A quick Google, both on site and general web, should net you some excellent results. Marina   

Freshwater refugium Hey Bob, I just finished setting up a tank for my fat boy goldfish to house them for the winter. I am looking into making a section of my sump a refugium of sorts, Do you have any suggested plants? I was thinking duckweed, water sprite, or maybe water lettuce if I can get my hands on some, I understand it is illegal now. I do not need fish and game knocking down my door. <Oh yes! Some "cool water" "bunch" plants... Egeria densa/Anacharis, Ceratophyllum/Coontail-Hornwort, one of the Myriophyllums/Parrot's Feather-Milfoil... Bob> Thanks, Gage 

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