goldfish beginners

10 Mistakes Beginners Make With Goldfish


Goldfish is a pet for the entire family.

oranda / Pixabay

There are a lot of varieties of goldfish bred by different breeders for your aquarium.

They arrive with bright colors, looking excellent and providing a real pleasure to a hobbyist.

Goldfish are easy to keep; they do have certain requirements and need good care and attention if they're to be healthy and happy. 

These tiny and energetic creatures are graceful and fun to watch for hours at a time.

They're peace lovers and because of their shiny colors, they instantly attract the attention of anybody.

Goldfish is a very easy hobby for any fish enthusiast once you know the fundamentals of caring for them.

children and goldfish

You must remember two things - keep the tank and the water clean and feed the goldfish at the appropriate time.

Every year people are trying their luck with Goldfish however only a small part of them still keep Goldfish one year later.

This can mainly be contributed to bad experiences such as dying fish, a dirty aquarium or a green aquarium completely conquered with the aid of algae.

Most of these experiences are brought on through some common mistakes that many fish keepers make and can also be conveniently avoided.

Below you'll find a list of some common mistake beginners make with goldfish 

1. Purchasing everything at once and then setting up the tank when you get home

An aquarium needs to stabilize before you introduce Goldfish into it. This approach must be allowed to take at least a minimum of weeks.

fish bowl

The motive for this is that aquariums need to establish a fauna of good micro organism that helps brake down toxins created by decaying plant part and fish waste.

You can speed the process alongside by taking water from an already established aquarium to put on your own or by purchasing an aquarium starter kit. 

2. Smaller isn't easier

Many newcomers buy a small aquarium as their first aquarium considering that it is going to be easier to maintain.

Nothing could, however, be further from the truth. Bigger aquariums are more stable and require less maintenance than smaller aquariums.

I never recommend anyone to start with less that 100L/25 gallons.  

An aquarium of this size is still rather small, would not take up a lot of room and is much easier to deal with than even smaller aquariums.

A larger aquarium can also house larger Goldfish and can therefore offer you much more Goldfish species to choose among than a smaller tank would. 

3. Buying the wrong Goldfish

Some Goldfish are hardier than other and are for this reason more suitable for beginners.

Different Goldfish species also has various requirements as they come from different environments in the wild.

Ensure to choose simply Goldfish that suits the water for your area (or prepare the water to suit the Goldfish) and only keeps fish that wants the same type of atmosphere in the same aquarium.

types of fancy goldfish

Make sure to choose Goldfish with a similar temperament and that does not grow too big in your aquarium.  

A common mistake persons make are purchasing goldfish for their tropical aquariums. Goldfish are tropical fish and do fine in colder water.

Preserving them in warm water make them prune to diseases and shorten their life spans.

It's common that you hear about people keeping their goldfish alive for a couple of years as something impressing when goldfish in reality live to be 20, 30 sometimes even 40 years.

4. Cleaning the filter in hot water

Many beginners clean their filters in warm water to get them relatively clean; some even use cleaners.

Marineland Penguin Power Filter, 50 to 70-Gallon, 350 GPH

Both of these practices should not be done as they destroy the important bacteria in the filter and reduces the effectiveness of the filter.

Simply use room temperature water when cleansing your filter and make sure that the filter media does not dry out during the cleansing.

It is okay if some dirt is still there while you put it again in the aquarium.

5. Overfeeding

The Goldfish may seem like they are begging for food but don't give in.

Feeding them to much will just put stress on the water and potentially kill your Goldfish in the end.

swim bladder disease

Feed your Goldfish two times a day and no more than they can eat in a couple of minutes.

6. Using small bowls meant for household needs

I can’t believe how many people still buy into this one.

The mentality is that “Goldfish don't need a large tank. They can live just fine in a lovable little bowl." 

The main problem is that the bowl cannot provide enough oxygen because of such a small surface area. 

So the goldfish ends up basically... suffocating to death. Plenty of oxygen make for happy healthy fish. 

air bubbles

Toxins speedily build up in the water if there's no filter or the bowl isn't cleaned on a daily basis. 

Most goldfish aren't hardy and tough enough to stand little oxygen and lots of toxins in the water (especially the fancy varieties). So it's only a matter of time before they die.

7. Reaching for the medicine cabinet before the Siphon

​This is a really bad mistake.

So many times a goldfish owner realizes that their fish isn't well. Probably it has bloody streaks in the fins. 

8. Mixing Goldfish with other Fish

People who love goldfish often love other types of fish too (especially tropical types).  They think: "Let's put all of them together! After all, they are both fresh water fish!" 

There are virtually several issues causes by mixing species. The biggest one is compatibility.

Goldfish eats any fish that fits in their mouth. 

9. Overcrowding the Tank

Everyone want their elbow room! Goldfish are no exception. 

In fact, proper space is very important to maintaining a healthy tank.

However, so many goldfish keepers tend to purchase fish after fish regardless of having limiting space.

how many goldfish can i fit

The crowded condition could make goldfish start having a problem getting together with each other. 

10. When and how to clean the Tank

So many goldfish owners only do 25% water changes weekly and even monthly.

Water Changes

They think the filter will do all of the work for them. 

11. Buying poor quality fish

Sometimes you can do everything right and maintain your goldfish well , but it will still live a short life.

goldfish black smudge

This can also be due to buying "poor quality" fish that is already weak, stunted or ill before you even bring them home from the pet store. 

Ok so there were 11. Which other ones can you think of?