Lionhead Progress (6th Month)

This month I mainly fed the lionhead (or as I have been told they are ranchu not lionhead.. or lionchu, whichever you feel these fish are) Saki-Hikari fancy goldfish (green bag) which has consisted of 3 feedings a day and 1/8 tsp per feeding (which is a lot less than these fish were eating the previous month). I also spent the month researching, designing, doing water changes (which is much easier now with a pond pump), etc to figure out why Pocky and Ramen both appeared to be having sudden swim bladder issues most the month. I figure the issue was due to escalated nitrate levels (which you may have read about correcting nitrate levels in my previous post) because after I did several big water changes the two fish appeared to make a quick recovery within 2-3 days (although some days they still seem to have issues), and the nitrates were really the only thing off when I tested the tank water (why we are often told to neglect our nitrate levels is now beyond me).
Sumo, Ramen, and Pocky (left to right)
My little Sumo currently weighed the most for a second month in a row now at 77g, which is a 10g gain from last month. Ramen weighed in at 72g with a 13g gain from last month allowing him to put on the most weight this month, surpass Pocky in weight, and have the average weight between the three. Pocky whom was the fastest growing of the three just 2 months ago only weighed in at 68g with a tiny 2g gain from last month (what's up with that??).
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The average gain this month was 8g (0.3g daily) which is half of what it was last month, keeping in mind that I did halve their food intake this month. As usual while the food was halved the weight of fish was not divided equally, although I am surprised to see Pocky falling drastically behind. Pocky has had a rough month in terms of swim bladder issues (same for Ramen though), but it could also be he doesn't care for the new Saki-Hikari as much as the others (because both Pocky and Sumo practically weighed the same last month while Ramen was tailing behind).

Based on my findings from this month and last month this shows me how much weight will be gained by my fish as a group, since half the amount of food is also half the amount of weight gained as a whole. I also feel that each fish has better weight gain depending upon their favored pellet food, I don't think it's one type of pellet food that really works for all the same type of fish. Also by halving their food intake Ramen and Pocky both noticeably were having some type of swim bladder/equilibrium issues, is this affected by high nitrate levels only or perhaps is this some type of hunger pain issue?

For next month I am going to go back to feeding the lionhead 1/4tsp of pellets per feeding, and I am going to put them back on a mixed pellet diet. I will also insure my nitrate stay at 40ppm or lower on a weekly basis. Since my fish are getting rather big for my tank setup I do plan to remove the large barnacle decor in the tank ('Eval' the pleco won't be happy about it) and I will probably just add in some fake plants (doing this will give the lionhead more swimming room as this currently takes up around 1/4 the tanks length, and it will increase water volume).

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