Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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meggyb27 12-29-2011 08:47 AM

Water is cloudy, tons of little bubbles
I have a 30 gallon fish tank, with a heater, filter and air pump. just added 7 gold fish,rocks, and 3 ornaments to the tank 3 days ago and now my tank is cloudy looking and has millions of tiny air bubbles. I used tap water to fill the tank up ( im on a well) the water was fine until we put the decor/rocks and the fish. The fish look healthy they eat and are very active. Im only using a 10-20 gallon filter right now ( thats all they had left at the store) wil be getting the 30 gallon filter pump this weekend. The heater was on 24 C, 72 F but turned it down yesterday to 20 C, 68 F because someone told me gold fish dont need heat. Im using a Jet stream 3500 double outlet air pump, but only usig the outlet the produces the most bubbles. I feed my fish with goldfish pellets twice a day. If any body could help me with the cloudyness and tiny bubbles, it would be greatly appreciated.:-D

thekoimaiden 12-29-2011 12:41 PM

Welcome to the forum. First off, I have a few questions for you. Did you cycle the tank before you added the fish? Are your goldfish the fancy kind (golf ball shaped with double fins) or the common type (looking like regular carp-like fish)?

The cloudyness is probably a bacterial bloom. It can happen when a tank is cycling. It could also be the fish waste. Goldfish are messy little buggers and need heavy filtration as well as a large tank. The bubbles are probably from the air pump. If you want to try to clear up the bubbles, turn the settings down.

Actually what goldfish like is a constant temperature. I keep mine at 75F. If your tank will constantly stay 68F then you would be fine to leave them there. Just remember, goldfish metabolism is determined by the temp of the water. If you want them to grow faster, turn the temp up.

I'm very sorry you got bad information, but 7 goldfish cannot live in a 30 gal tank. Goldfish get large and have a very heavy bioload (produce a lot waste). You will have problems with disease and stunting if you leave them there. Most people recommend 75+ gal for 7 fancy goldfish. For a 30 gal most people recommend only 2 fancy goldfish. A beginner's rule of thumb is 20 gal for the first fish and an additional 10 gals for every other fish. You may have baby fish and think they can fit, but trust me, in no time it will seem like they are bursting the tank.

I think the best thing you can do in your situation is return all but your two favorite. Or you could return them all and get different fish. Many of the tropicals remain rather small, so you could fit more tropicals in your tank than goldfish. Everyone here would be more than happy to help you stock your tank with tropicals.

meggyb27 12-29-2011 02:04 PM

Hi, no i didnt cycle the tank first, and there just regular goldfish "comets". Yeah the guy at the petshop said you can only put 7 fish in a 30 g tank ( but i heard from alot of people they dont know what there talking about.) But I will be getting another tank so maybe ill just wait it out and put some of them in it. Dont really want to take them back because my 3 year old picked them out, and she'll probably freak lol. and like i said i getting a better filter this weekend hopefully that will help with the cloudness, and ill switch the air pump too the other side. Oh do you know what kind of fish you can put in with the goldfish (buddy at the store said there a aggressive fish) which i didnt think they were ( he said to just get a snail once the algea get up)

thekoimaiden 12-29-2011 04:21 PM

Oh dear... Comets are another story. You can't even have one in a 30 gal. Comets need 100+ gal tanks as they get at least 6 inches and like to have a lot of room to swim. Comets are best suited to pond life.

Getting a filter rated for a 30 gal is not going to be enough. I would go up to something rated for a 50 gal, but even then it will only offer temporary relief. Your fish are going to need a huge tank or a pond in order to thrive. While some might survive in the 30 gal, you are going to have lots of problems with disease.

Most pet stores don't really know what they are talking about with fish. I've never gotten good advice from a petstore employee. Don't get me wrong. There are intelligent ones out there, but they are the minority by far. I'm sorry you've had encounters with the poorly educated kind.

Right now, in that tank, you can't fit anything else in. It's already waay overstocked. You should be doing 50% water changes daily to keep everyone healthy. Beginner's Guide to the Freshwater Aquarium Cycle This is a great article about cycling a freshwater tank.

Goldfish are not aggressive, but they are well known for eating anything that can fit in their mouths (I can't even have snails with mine). They won't seek out fish and bully them to death, but some can be nippy with long flowy fins. Right now, you can't have anything else with your fish. When they are in a suitable home, you can try to find some tankmates for them. Their final home will determine what their tankmates can be. Both ponds and tanks have possibilities. In ponds, goldfish can be kept with koi (provided the pond is large enough) or mosquitofish (guppy relatives). In tanks I have seen goldfish kept with a variety of things. A buddy of mine here has 3 comets and 2 bichir in a 100 gal.

meggyb27 12-29-2011 04:26 PM

Thanks for the information

meggyb27 12-29-2011 04:38 PM

I just checked the ph level in my tank and its high, can you use ph down while the fish are still in the tank/

thekoimaiden 12-29-2011 04:53 PM


Originally Posted by meggyb27 (Post 933501)
I just checked the ph level in my tank and its high, can you use ph down while the fish are still in the tank/

Yes you can, but using chemicals to alter pH isn't a good idea. A better way to make the pH come back down is to do a water change.

Byron 12-31-2011 04:40 PM

How high is "high" for your pH? And is this the same as the tap water (you should let some tap water sit overnight and then test pH, the dissolved CO2 can result in a faulty and lower reading)?

Goldfish do best in basic (pH above 7) water, so "high" may be quite fine. And Izzy is quite correct, messing with trying to adjust pH can be fraught with trouble and is highly stressful on fish in the water. You can read why here:

I agree with Izzy's earlier suggestions, just for the record.


meggyb27 12-31-2011 04:43 PM

yeah i never used the ph down, i vacuumed the rocks/tank today and did a 50% water change, it cleared the cloudyness quite abit and the fish are fine, thanks for the info

Byron 12-31-2011 04:57 PM


Originally Posted by meggyb27 (Post 935721)
yeah i never used the ph down, i vacuumed the rocks/tank today and did a 50% water change, it cleared the cloudyness quite abit and the fish are fine, thanks for the info

I just want to ensure you understand things, I realize it can get quite confusing sometimes particularly when one is fairly new to the hobby.

The pH of the tap water will normally remain fairly close in the aquarium. If it is rising, that indicates there is a calcareous substance in the aquarium, such as gravel, sand or rock composed of a calcareous mineral such as calcium (primarily), magnesium, and a few others. Limestone, dolomite, aragonite, marble all do this, as does coral (shells, crushed coral, etc). Aside from this, the pH in the aquarium is not likely to rise above the tap water pH.

If the aquarium pH lowers below the tap water, that is natural. That article I linked earlier will explain that. This can be dangerous if it is significant, and with basic-water fish (like goldfish). A water change would raise the pH somewhat (depending upon several factors) in this situation.

The aim is stability; a relatively-stable pH and nitrate level is healthiest for the fish.

The cloudiness is another issue entirely, just so you know.

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