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7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all :)

After 2 years if running a tank and going through multiple fish and a couple plants Im finally bringing myself to ask some questions... sad i know :*(

Current Setup
29 Gallon Tank
1 light which i just found out should be changed yearly...
2 filters, 1 tetra 45, 1 aqueon something... was rated for 45 gal also
gravel only bottom
new aqueon heater
a quiet tetra air supply with 1 stone that needs to be changed...

2 oranda golfish that are no longer red capped
4 salt n pepper cats
1 pleco that flips out once in a while all over the tank named Joey
2 decorative plants, not real and 2 other decor items

Ok so to explain the double filter we had 20 fish at one point. Yes too much but my wife wanted them lol. I just kept them running even though were down to 7.

Why would the goldfish lose their red caps?

What is a good brand of flourescent light bulbs?

Do bacteria actually grow on those plastic deals they put in the power filters? Tried a Marineland biowheel but it stopped spinning entirely causing the top to dry out plus it was loud.

Do you really need to add more bacteria when doing water changes?
If so, what brand is best?

Gravel and live plants, yes or no
Live plants and goldfish, yes or no
Naturally the airstone gets pulled.

Tank gets alot of white crusty build ups: Is it Calcium?

Will it be safe to add Glass catfish?

Okies I think Im done asking dumb newb questions now.... Been tryingto read some books also, any suggestions greatly appreiated.

9,426 Posts
hello and welcome.
okiedokie now...
live plants are always a good thing in an will pick at most !
i used a sun glo light in my tank at the moment(small tank)
don't know why the fish would lose their red caps sorry.
the only thing you should need to add to the new water you put
in the tank is a water conditioner,which removes chlorine,and chloramine.
gravel is fine,nothing wrong with that,although if the salt and pepper catfish
are corydora ? then a sanded area would benefit,as gravel can wear away
their barbels.
what temperature is the tank at? gold fish are unheated.
the plec is tropical though,so he'll appreciate warmth.
what are your readings for water chemistry ?
white crusty stuff,is calcium,you can remove safely by using a razor blade.
yes,bacteria grow in the filter,which is why it's a good idea to not clean the filter
too often,and when you do,only clean lightly,and in tank water you have removed on water change day.
i hope this has helped a bit, the way i would say no to the glass cats,unless you get rid of the gold fish,and have the tank solely Tropical.

1,059 Posts
Welcome to the forum. I want to try and answer your questions (a lot of agreeing with willow) and also to point out a few other things. Please don't take anything I say as getting down on you. All of us have been new at some point and made mistakes so I commend you for coming and looking for answers.

I'm not very versed on fancy goldfish. The rule I've also heard was 20 gallons for the first and 10 for each additional one. Some people do say 30 gallons for the first and then 10 for each one after that. That's for just goldfish alone as they have a lot of waste.

I'd like to comment on your pleco, but really can't. There's nearly 200 species and I have no idea which one you have. There's a wide range of temperatures, sizes, and diets among other things. Some species would be ok in a 29, others would be a massive problem as some are capable of getting close to two feet if not stunted. One thing I can say though is that all of them do have a large bioload.

The cories like to be larger groups, but you are already overstocked even to add more of a small species of cory like the salt and pepper. No glass catfish, btw. They are extremely sensitive to water conditions nor do they match the goldfish's needed parameters.

The multiple filters will help with bioload, but they do not create extra space, so even with them you are still overstocked.

I'll try and answer some of the rest of your questions (that willow didn't touch on) for future reference, but it's under the caveat that working on the stocking (returning fish/a second tank) should be the first things to worry about.

You can have plants and gravel. Goldfish however will eat most plants. There some exceptions such as anubias that they might not eat (again not an expert on them).

Prime is the water conditioner I prefer and yes it should be used with every weekly water change.

The light only needs changed yearly (9 months according to some) if you're keeping live plants, otherwise I wouldn't even bother. Anything with a kelvin rating of 6500k should suffice.

2,392 Posts
Welcome to the forum! I'll try to get some stuff that neither BWG or Willow were able to touch (mostly the stuff about the goldfish).

The goldfish lost their red caps because color isn't very stable in young goldfish. Every single goldfish I own has had his or her color patterns change throughout the years. It's just the way goldfish are. What usually happens with redcap orandas is the red spreads to the back and makes them red and white orandas. There is nothing wrong with the fish; it's just their genetics.

Gravel and live plants is just fine. Goldfish and live plants can be tricky. Right now I have anubias and amazon swords in with my fish. HOWEVER, they were raised with those plants. They don't see them as food. I've found that when introduced to plants when young goldfish tend not to eat them as much. You could go ahead and try anubias (about the hardiest aquarium plant out there) with yours and see how it goes. Make sure you only put the roots in the gravel, not the rhizome (thing the leaves grow from).

Now for the stocking question. You are overstocked even when overfiltered. Two goldfish in a 29 gal puts the aquarium at maxed out (in terms of swimming room and biological capacity--goldfish, especially orandas get very big). Some people can make it work, but it's difficult and not recommended for beginners. The people who do keep goldfish that way have no other fish in the tank and most even remove the gravel to allow for maximum water volume. A 29 gal is a great start for a tropical tank, but the goldfish really need something larger like a 40 gal or a 55 gal. You're going to have to make a choice here: keep the goldfish and everything else goes or rehome the goldfish.

I don't mean to sound like a downer. I don't blame you for the way your tank is. Most pet stores just don't know what they are doing with goldfish and sometimes fish in general. But as BWG said, we've all been there and are here to help you. :)

7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Additional Info

Thank you all for your replies, greatly appreciated! :) I kinda figured 2 goldfish was probably too much so it's not surprising to hear that.

I took a couple pics of the tank and uploaded to my Album, not sure how to post on here though lol.

I got one of the tank in full, one of the pleco up close (Still have yet to determine his exact species) and also my recent Nitrogen cycle testing which is another area I have troubles with.

My NO3 is ALWAYS stupidly high. No matter how many water changes I try to do between 25-75%, clean gravel, etc. it will never not be red... It's annoying! It was doing that well before we even had goldfish. For the first time in a while a tinge of green appeared in the ammonia but I had done a 30% water change last night. We are using Prime now for the water changes, was using a different brand before (All I remember it was a grey label with a green triangle on 1 bottle, orange triangle on the other).

Again i'd post the pics here if I knew how.

156 Posts
Again i'd post the pics here if I knew how.[/quote]

If my memory is working today (LOL) there is a sticky here in the forum describing how to do it.

You have taken the right first steps to becoming an expert aquarist. Keep it up.

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