goldfish in stock tanks

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Reauxman, Feb 27, 2005.

  1. Reauxman

    Reauxman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,535
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2002
    Location:
    Louisiana
    A few weeks ago I bought a pound(ended up being 60) of goldfish to add to water tanks. We have one old porcelin bathtub and a 100 or so gallon metal stock tank. My question, are the fish sopposed to eat the alge from the sides of the tanks as well? They do a good job of keeping the fallen debris clean, but the sides are no better. Also, will they breed in that setup? I don't need 700 goldfish, but I think watching a group grow up would be neat. We will be adding a few more tanks in the next few months, so I wil be transferring some out to another tank. Didn't expect 60, last time I had 27 in the pound.
     
  2. DayBird

    DayBird Big Bird

    Messages:
    2,173
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Pell City, AL

    They get fairly big. 6 inches is about the smallest I've ever known them to breed. Your 100g tank would only safely hold about 6-10 of the big ones. You can add guppies during the summer to help with mosquito larvae. The goldfish will eat some, but biologically they're classified as herbivorious.
     

  3. Reauxman

    Reauxman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,535
    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2002
    Location:
    Louisiana
    Guess I forgot to mention that. That was my main logic as I do live in SE Louisiana where misquito breed year round. There are no larve in the tank now, there were many before the fish went in. The other day I threw a misquito in the tank and within a matter of seconds they had ate it. I know what you mean on size, I will be moving some out in time. They are only about 1-2" now(most of them)
     
  4. BobK

    BobK Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,230
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2004
    A lot of wht you are calling algae may very well be filamentous algae (cyanobacteria) which is not very appealing to goldfish for a food source. They will keep the detritus and mosquito larvae cleaned up. Without adequate nutrition these fish will not spawn. If you supplement feed it may be a possibility but with that high of a density and no outside food source the chances of succesful reproduction is close to nill. I reproduction is to occur without a spawning substrate and isolation away from the rest of the hungry fish the eggs will be consumed nearly as fast as they are laid.
     
  5. Windy in Kansas

    Windy in Kansas In Remembrance

    Messages:
    11,076
    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2002
    Location:
    South Central Kansas
    Shadrak, Meshak and Abednego lived in our stock tank for decades. They were always the size of Koi in my memory.
    They were about a foot in length. I don't know the sex of them, but they never produced offspring.

    When the stock tank was in jeopardy of freezing solid we would add plenty of fresh water, then toss in a log or something to absorb some of the expansion. We always heard that the fish would die of the tank froze solid. I doubt you would have that problem in Louisanna.

    We fed the fish on occassion whether they needed it or not. The tank was under a tree for the most part and in a corner of a corral. I expect edibles fell into the tank as well as blew in from the near incessant wind in Kansas.

    If you have too many fish you might run into oxygenation problems.

    I don't think I answered any of your questions, but just wanted to let you know that goldfish can live successfully in stock tanks with almost no care.
     
  6. tyusclan

    tyusclan Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,481
    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2005
    Location:
    Florida
    I had an algae eater in mine at one time that did a good job. The only problem is that they are much more susceptible to the cold than the goldfish. The goldfish live fine through the winter here, but the first 30 degree day got the algae eater.
     
  7. GoldenMom

    GoldenMom Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,992
    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2005
    Location:
    Central Iowa
    I live in Iowa and have to use a stock tank heater. Would that keep the water warm enough for goldfish over the winter? Or do they need to come inside? During the coldest spell the top inch or so of half of the tank froze, but the other half was open.

    Sarah
     
  8. DayBird

    DayBird Big Bird

    Messages:
    2,173
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Pell City, AL

    I think they would be ok. I sell lots of fish to pond owners. Of course, I'm just in Birmingham and so far we haven't had any really cold, freezing weather this winter, but I always tell people that if the water is more than 18 inches deep, their fish will be fine.

    I also have alot of people buying plecostomus every spring. They're the big, black sucker mouth catfish that most people call algae eaters or "scum suckers." I always tell them that they'll have to catch them and bring them in during the winter. I sell them for $2.99 in the spring about 4 inches long and have at least a dozen brought in and given back to the store every Sept. - Oct. about 12 inches long that I then resell for $19.99. I'm happy with that arrangement. :)
     
  9. Maura

    Maura Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    15,980
    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2004
    Location:
    Michigan's thumb
    I found those big apple snails did a good job of vacuuming. I wouldn't too much about the algae. The only reason the algea is there is because there's something for them to eat and they are basicly cleaning up after the fish.

    As for how many fish you can keep in a container, you need to measure the surface of the water. It is at the surface that the water and air exchange, releasing bad and bringing in good. If the water surface is too still, you will need a bubbler or something to break the surface.

    Baby goldfish are growing and you need to feed them. Once they get to five or six inches they need less food per inch. Since you live in a warm climate, they will continue to grow longer than if they lived in the midwest. They are eating everything that falls into the tank, including mosquitos and their larvae. Goldfish eat anything. You can feed them better quality cat food and vegetables. They don't have the capability of biting off chunks, so anything has to be small enough for them to swallow whole. They like soft bodied slugs and worms

    If you do want them to breed you have to trick them into it. When the water becomes cold (if it ever does in LA), stop feeding them. They need to go through a winter cycle. Lower the water. When the temp rises, you raise the water level and give them a substrate to breed on, like seaweed, rag mop, just about anything. You can then lift the mop out and put it into a different container. I'm sure you can find information on breeding goldfish.
     
  10. blazingguns

    blazingguns Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    288
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2004
    Location:
    Missouri
    Now I am curious!! I was thinking of getting goldfish for my stock tank that 3 horses drink out of, but won't the horses suck up the goldfish when they are drinking? I know that may sound dumb, but it got me thinking!!!!! I mean my guys get huge drinks!!!!
     
  11. RedneckPete

    RedneckPete Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,278
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2004
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Goldfish can breed at about three to four inches.

    They need a spawning medium. Water hyacines are great, but your lifestock will probably eat them. A large cork with a mop of yarn hanging below it will work also.

    The babies need areas to hid that the adults can't follow. The adults will eat their own eggs and fry. If you don't seperate that adults out after the spawing you will only get a few babies that survive. If you seperate them, you can potentially get thousands. If you want to try this E-Mail me. I'll get you more info.

    Pete
     
  12. GREEN_ALIEN

    GREEN_ALIEN Sunny, Wet, Tornadoey SD!

    Messages:
    436
    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2004
    Location:
    South Dakota
    Goldfish in our stock tank in Idaho froze solid every winter and thawed out just fine each spring. Always seemed that there were a few more every year so we musta been doing something right.
     
  13. Phantomfyre

    Phantomfyre Black Cat Farm Supporter

    Messages:
    1,357
    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    Location:
    N. Illinois
    I'm thinking the hardest part of having fish in the tank would be catching the little buggers when it's time to clean the tank! Surely, the tank still needs to be cleaned occasionally, even with the fish. So I guess a small net would be handy to have. But this is a great idea - I feed the horses their hay right next to the tank because I have an old boy who finds it easier to chew his hay if he dunks it. It's nice for him, but that tank gets NASTY, despite the fact that I try to scoop out the hay twice a day. Hopefully, a few fish will help.

    Diana
     
  14. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,808
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2003
    Location:
    Dysfunction Junction, SW PA
    I used to raise pond goldfish and koi... the breeding trick is th drop the water temp.
    up north here, when the water temp hits 50, they stop eating go to the bottom and "sleep" burried in the muck. if your pond freezes over, make sure there is a few feet of water under the ice and they will be fine, it is part of their cycle.
    in spring, whenthe water temp goes up to 60, they begin to spawn. they need somethng to flop on, I used plastic xmas wreaths floating in the water... they will flop on top of those and spread eggs till the water temp gets about 67-70.
    its the temp shift that makes them spawn, so if your in a southern state where the water is kept constant spawning probably wont happen.
    stock tanks that freeze but have the surface broken so the stock can drink, will or should have the right temp flux to trigger spawning.
    youll know they are as they damn near jump out of the water... but wont if they dont have a mat to jump ON.
    (floating onthe water).
    once you see the eggs keep watching one day there will be a cloud of babies in there, but the big ones eat them so they need the mats left there to hide in.

    :D
     
  15. comfortablynumb

    comfortablynumb Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,808
    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2003
    Location:
    Dysfunction Junction, SW PA
    you can take the egg covered mats out and toss them in another tank....
    make sure its OLD water, as the babies need the micro organisms in the cloudy yucky water to eat for a few weeks.
    babies in clean water will starve.