Have you recently observed that your Goldfish tank has become cloudy? If you have been keeping Goldfish before, or even if you are a newbie to this, no need to worry! Cloudy Goldfish tanks can be a concern among Goldfish keepers, but I will tell you how you should not worry about this. In this article, I will elaborate on how a cloudy atmosphere may have appeared in your Goldfish tank, and what you can do to clear it out.
If your Goldfish tank is cloudy there are a couple of reasons behind this. Your tank is unclean, with a lot of food waste, bacterial bloom, algal bloom, etc.
No one wants unclear water for their Goldfish, or any fish to live in. Cloudy water not only looks unpleasant to the eye but will also hide your Goldfish from view. You may have noticed that a tank can become cloudy all of a sudden. Is it that easy for the cloudiness to disappear as well? Do you have to do something to help clear out your Goldfish tank? Or should you not be worrying that much over such a situation? I will answer all of these questions and much more.
What is a Cloudy Tank?
A Goldfish tank may become cloudy when its water is misty and unclear. The color of the tank’s water turns whitish or a pale yellow. In some cases, the color may even turn brown and even green. The brown and green colors are an indication of the bacterial and algal environment within the tank.
A cloudy Goldfish tank may not be as harmful to your Goldfish as you may think. For new Goldfish keepers, it is very common for the tank to become cloudy all of a sudden. While in some cases the tank can become cloudy over a period of time. So, what must you do to avoid it? And what has actually caused it in the first place?
Reasons Why your GoldFish Tank May Be Cloudy
There are a number of factors that may have contributed to your Goldfish tank becoming cloudy. Fortunately, none of these are harmful enough to kill your fish. But in some cases, they might, however, indicate a slight problem in your Goldfish tank environment. Let me take you through the reasons leading to your Goldfish tank becoming cloudy.
- Floating Gravel: If you have only recently bought a Goldfish, and you are a newbie to this community, you may have experienced a cloudy atmosphere in your Goldfish’s tank. Any aquarium keeper finds it essential to add gravel and rocks to their aquarium. This gives their fish a feeling close to home. Just after you have set your tank and added gravel, your tank may become cloudy the next day. This should not alarm you, as it is not anything harmful to your Goldfish. The gravel can be in all sizes, and some of the particles are small enough to float throughout the tank, hence giving the tank a cloudy appearance. The gravel will soon settle, and this cloudiness will disappear in no time.
- Food Particles: It is very much possible that your Goldfish have not eaten the food that you have given them. This causes the food particles to remain in the tank, and excess may result in a cloudy environment. This typically only occurs when your Goldfish have not eaten the food, which is very rare, as they enjoy eating a lot.
- Waste Particles: As much as Goldfish eat food, they also excrete a lot of waste. A healthy Goldfish’s poop is also whitish in color. It is possible that your Goldfish tank is cloudy due to the Goldfish poop. This mostly occurs when you have a lot of Goldfish in the tank, which produces a lot of waste. Since they are being fed at the same time, they will excrete at approximately the same time too, giving a rise to a sudden cloudy atmosphere in the tank.
- Chemicals: If your Goldfish tank’s filter is not working properly, there is a good chance that there are chemicals floating about in your Goldfish tank. These chemicals dissolved in water may also give rise to a cloudy tank.
- Bacteria: Your Goldfish tank has both good and bad bacteria present. The bad bacteria cause the tank to become cloudy. As dangerous as it may seem, it is also completely normal. It takes time for the good and bad bacteria to balance out in your Goldfish tank. As soon as the balance is achieved, the cloudiness will clear out. Bacteria may also have grown in your Goldfish tank as a result of decaying food and irregular water changes. If you have not cleaned your Goldfish tank in a long time, it is only natural that bad bacteria will develop and make the water in the tank cloudy.
- Algae: Where there is fish waste and water, there are algae. This is very common in a Goldfish tank, as Goldfish produce a lot of waste on a daily basis. The phosphates and nitrates in the waste of your Goldfish can easily give rise to algae in their tank. Algae can also cause the water in your Goldfish to become green and in some cases, brown. This algae growth can be a bit of a problem for your Goldfish, as too many algae will take in a lot of oxygen at night. This will deprive your Goldfish of the oxygen that it requires and will make your Goldfish tired and sick.
- Tannins: If you have recently added driftwood to your Goldfish’s tank, you may have observed a tinge of yellow cloudiness in the water of the tank. People add driftwood to their fish tanks to beautify the tank, for a more important reason, to maintain the pH of the water in the tank. Driftwood causes the water in your Goldfish tank to turn yellowish. This is completely natural and is of no harm to your Goldfish, whatsoever.
- Organic Carbons: In your Goldfish tank you may have a plantation. Some of these plants die from improper nutrition. Some of the fish die too due to them being sick. The dead plant and fish matter decay faster in water than they would on land. Added to this is the uneaten food that also starts decaying very soon. The decaying matter produces organic carbons, which may cause your Goldfish tank to become cloudy. These organic compounds may also lower the oxygen levels in your Goldfish tank; hence it can be a little dangerous for your Goldfish.
What You Can Do to Fix the Cloudy Tank Situation?
If I am being honest, there is no such thing as fixing the cloudiness in your Goldfish tank. This is because the situation has occurred all by itself, and that is exactly how it will go away. A cloudy tank is not a huge and frequently occurring problem for your Goldfish, and if you try to meddle with the issue, you may be adding to the problem, instead of solving it. Here is why:
- Balance in Bacteria is Established: If you have just started keeping Goldfish, or if you have recently changed the water of your Goldfish tank, it is only natural that the Bacterial balance is disturbed. The rise in the bad bacteria is what causes the cloudy tank of your Goldfish. With time, however, the bad bacteria will be filtered out by the filter you must have installed in your Goldfish tank. Also, the plantation in your Goldfish tank will also eat away the bacteria’s nutrients, causing a decrease in bacterial growth. This will occur faster than you can imagine, and if you try to fix it yourself by changing the water in your Goldfish tank more frequently, you may be creating more problems for your Goldfish. This is because when you change water to get rid of bad bacteria, you get rid of the good bacteria as well, which your Goldfish will then be deprived of.
- Gravel will Settle: When you have just added gravel to your new Goldfish tank, the particles will float around. If you try to mix the water in an attempt to mix the gravel or sink it to the bottom, you may be disturbing the particles more than they already were. Give your Goldfish tank some time before adding the Goldfish to the tank where you have just added gravel. The particles will soon sink to the bottom of the tank, and the cloudiness will disappear. When the water seems clear to you, you may add your Goldfish to their new home.
What you can do to avoid the Cloudy Goldfish Tank?
Even if there is not much that you can do to clear out the cloudy water in your Goldfish tank, there are still some measures you can take to avoid it altogether. I will take you through some tips to avoid a cloudy water situation in your Goldfish tank.
- Add Plantation: In case of a bacterial bloom, the best way to avoid it is to add a live plantation in your Goldfish tank. Live plants need nutrients to thrive. They get the nutrients from the tank’s water, and if they are absorbing all the nutrients, there will be lesser nutrients left for the bacteria to grow. This works for algae as well, as algae also need nutrients to grow. Plants will not only stop algae and bad bacteria to grow in your Goldfish tank, but they will also provide good bacteria to your Goldfish.
- Do Not Overfeed: When you add food to your Goldfish tank that they do not eat within two minutes, you might be overfeeding them. Adding excessive food to your Goldfish tank will cause the food to decay when it is not eaten. It is best to feed your Goldfish less if it is not eating the food that you are giving it. And if you do add more food than your Goldfish can eat, you must remove the excess food.
- Do Not Overstock: If you keep too many Goldfish, they will produce a lot of waste, that may not be possible to remove on a regular basis. Do not keep too many Goldfish in a tank that is too small for them. Ideally, it is suggested that you keep a single Goldfish in a 30-gallon tank and keep adding 10 gallons of space and water for every next Goldfish you introduce to the tank.
- Keep a Check on the Ammonia Levels: You must keep checking the ammonia and nitrite levels in your Goldfish tank, as high ammonia and nitrite content is very risky for your Goldfish. You can do this by buying an ammonia testing kit that you can easily get from a pet store. Test the water for ammonia levels, once every two weeks. In case the ammonia content is higher than normal, you can add ammonia control tablets to the tank, which will reduce the ammonia level in no time.
- Algae Control: You can avoid the growth of algae in your Goldfish tank by taking certain very simple measures. Adding an algae eater, such as a snail, to your Goldfish tank is a good option, as it will eat algae faster than you would expect. Similarly, you made algae control solvents for your Goldfish tank, which you can get from a pet store. You must also keep your Goldfish tank away from sunlight and other UV radiation, as it can certainly increase algae growth. You may want to add a UV filter to ensure that UV radiation does not affect your Goldfish tank.
- Seeding: This is a process in which you can take some gravel off an already well-maintained aquarium that you may have, or you can ask a friend, and add it to the new aquarium that you are setting up. The gravel from a healthy aquarium will contain the right number of good bacteria and mineral balance that your fresh Goldfish tank needs. This process will help achieve bacterial balance faster, and your tank may never become cloudy at all.
- Wash Gravel: Before you add gravel to your new Goldfish tank, you can wash off the gravel with non-chlorinated water. This will rid the gravel of any harmful chemicals and make the gravel settle down faster, as the dirt particles would have been removed.
- Wash Filter Sponge: You must do this regularly, especially in a Goldfish tank. Filter cleaning is very important in tanks where Goldfish are kept, as a lot of waste is produced. When you are changing the water of your Goldfish tank, you can rinse the filter sponges by dipping them in the water that you are about to add to your Goldfish tank. This will keep the filters in your Goldfish tank working properly.
- Water Changes: You must change the water in your Goldfish tank once every two weeks. The waste in the water along with the unhealthy components such as ammonia and algae are effectively removed through a water change. But make sure that if the tank is still becoming cloudy, you should not increase the water changes that much, as you may be ridding the Goldfish tank of good bacteria in an attempt to clear out the water.
- Eco Bio Stones: This product is very good for a Goldfish aquarium or tank. The stones contain good bacteria spores and are made from volcanic rocks. They provide the Goldfish with the good bacteria that they need and are also long-lasting. You do not need to maintain or clean them, and they only give rise to good bacteria in your Goldfish tank.
- Water Conditioners: Another useful tip is to add water conditioners to your Goldfish tank when you are changing the water of the tank. The conditioners work best in keeping the water clean and harmless for your Goldfish and also prevent the reasons that give rise to a cloudy Goldfish tank. These are readily available at any local pet store and do not cost a lot.
The Bottom Line on Cloudy Goldfish Tank
A cloudy Goldfish tank is displeasing to the eye, but it is not something that you lose your sleep. It is natural for Goldfish keepers to become worried if there is something off and different about the water in their Goldfish tank. But I am sure that after reading this article, you must not be that worried anymore. A cloudy Goldfish tank is more of an avoidable issue than a solvable one. Following the tips that I just gave you, will for sure help you avoid a cloudy atmosphere in your Goldfish tank.