Goldfish and PH
I'm just curious about PH. People are telling me that PH doesn't matter so much as stability of PH. I've read that GF need 7+ PH and Alkaline waters. What happens if you keep GF in soft, low PH water (ph 6)?
This is simply a case by case basis. EACH fish is unique. There are species that are more tolerant to pH extremities while others are not. Unfortunately goldfish in general fall under the category where low pH to them can cause health issues. Acidic pH causes their slimecoat to peel off leaving them vulnerable to health issues. I've observed this on a few occasions resulting to skin infections and bleeding. Only correct water conditions including buffing up of pH and hardness levels can correct this issue and goldfish eventually recover quickly when these are addressed.
Low pH causes slimecoat sloughing.
Low pH causes frayed fins.
Putting hardness levels into this regard, it is OFTEN most responsible for the pH drop thus resulting in sick fish. Note that goldfish are VERY messy fish to begin with. When they expel a massive amount of poop, it coincides with the dangerous elevation of nitrate that eats up the buffering properties thus acidifying the water. It's deja vu all over again when a goldfish is kept in soft acidic water.
To address the low pH and hardness levels as consequences are already mentioned above, you can buff them up by using crushed corals. Crushed corals are the safest method as they gradually release calcium carbonate that effectively stabilizes the pH and hardness levels.
Maybe also helpful to you to read over this, plenty useful info there http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/profiles/goldfish/
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