Goldfish, scientifically known as Carassius bibelio, is one of the most popular pet fishes in the world. It is a domesticated version of the Prussian carp, a dark-gray/brown carp native to Asia. It was first bred for color in China over 1,000 years ago. Due to selective breeding, goldfish are now found in various colors, color patterns, forms and sizes.
Bubble Eye/Suihogan Goldfish
This amazingly unique small variety of fancy goldfish that originated from China with upward pointing eyes that are accompanied by two large fluid-filled sacs is definitely one of the weirdest-looking and fantastic marine creatures. It doesn’t have a dorsal fin like the Ranchu, Celestial Eye and Lionchu.
The pair of large pouches of skin attached under its eyes jiggle as it swims. They normally grow up to 6 to 8 inches in length.
This hooded variety of fancy goldfish with an unusual display of beauty is referred to as the “king of goldfish” by Japanese people. Ranchus are the direct outcome of crossbreeding experiments of different Chinese Lionhead specimens.
This unique creature is a highly regarded fancy goldfish in Japan. Its most notable feature is its head and doesn’t have dorsal fin. Ranchus can reach between 6 to 8 inches (15 to 20 centimeters) in length.
Ranchus may come in orange, red, white, red-and-white, blue, black, black-and-white, black-and-red, natural, and chocolate coloration. Ranchus with a pale-yellow bodies and bright red heads are rare.
The spherical-bodied Pearlscale, a variety of fancy goldfish from China and Japan, most notable features are its headgrowth and its thick, domed scales with pearl-like appearance. Its body is round and similar to a golf ball. Pearlscales can reach up to 8 inches long and grow up as large as oranges.
This lovely goldfish is found without headgrowth, with Oranda-like headgrowth or with two large bubble domes. The bubble-domed Pearlscale is known as High-head Pearlscale, Crown Pearlscale or Hama nishiki.
Butterfly tail/Jikin Goldfish
The beautiful and adorable but rare Jikin is believed to have originated from Japan. Its most prominent trait is its tail that has a pronounced X shape. The Butterfly tail has a characteristically long, cigar-shaped or torpedo-shaped body that is white with red lips, fins and gill covers. It swims in a characteristically jerky manner and can grow up to 9 inches long. Other names for Jikin include Peacock tail Goldfish and Rokurin.
Telescope Eye/Demekin Goldfish
This weird-looking breed of fancy goldfish from China is characterized by its protruding eyes. Other common names include Globe Eye and Dragon Eye Goldfish.
The only difference of Demekin to a Ryukin is its enlarged projecting eyes. This variety comes in red, red-and-white, calico, black-and-white, chocolate, blue, lavender, chocolate-and-blue and black coloration. They may either have metallic or nacreous scales. Telescope eyes can grow quite large.
Demekins have poor visions and it is suggested that they should not be mixed with more active goldfish varieties and should be housed in an aquarium without sharp or pointed objects.
Oranda, a fancy goldfish from China and Japan, is characterized by a prominent raspberry-like hood or headgrowth encasing its head. This pretty and attractive goldfish is one of the most popular goldfish in the world. It has a large, long and deep body accompanied by a long quadruple tail.
Some variants of Oranda include the attractive Azuma Nishiki, the pretty Red-cap Oranda, the Nagate Oranda and many others.
Celestial Eye/Choten gan Goldfish
This is another odd-looking variety of fancy goldfish that originated in China and/or in Korea. Celestial eye goldfish or Choten gan’s most notable and obvious trait is the pair of telescope eyes which are turned upwards with pupils
Records show that Celestials existed as early as 1772 in China. It is a relatively small variety of goldfish that has
a torpedo-shaped body similar to the Bubble Eye. Like the Bubble Eye, the Celestial does not have a dorsal fin.
Pompom /Hana Fusa Goldfish
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The elegant Pompoms, a type of fancy goldfish that originated in China and Japan, have bundles of loose fleshy
outgrowths between the nostrils, on each side of the head hence the name Pompom Goldfish. It is similar in appearance to the Lionhead but instead of supporting a headgrowth, it has nasal outgrowths. See image hereRecords show that it had been in existence as far back as 1898. The first importation of these fish into the UnitedKingdom was in 1936 when the original fish were exported from Shanghai and others were displayed at an aquarium
This unique fancy variety of goldfish that don’t have a dorsal fin from Thailand is the result from crossbreeding lionheads and ranchus. It has a deep body, broad and curved back and large headgrowth.
This brightly colored and attractive variety of goldfish that originated in Japan and was named Ryukin is a short deep-bodied fancy goldfish with a characteristic hump in the shoulder region. It is a hardy and attractive variety of goldfish with a pointed head. The dorsal fin is high while the caudal fin is often twice as long as the body. The caudal fin may also have three or four lobes. Ryukins come in variety of colors like deep-red, red-and-white, white, iron and calico coloration. It is a fine aquarium fish that can reach up to 8 inches or 21 cm in length. Other common names include the Japanese Ribbontail, the Fringetail, the Fantail or the Veiltail
This simply beautiful variety of goldfish named Calico or Nacreous Goldfish has a mixture of metallic and transparent scales that produces a pearly appearance.
Calico coloration occasionally occurs in other fancy goldfish varieties. This variety could grow up to 12 inches in length.
Calico goldfish coloration is composed of patches of red, yellow, grey and black along with dark speckles on a blue background. This nacreous coloration of usually extends over the fins.
Interesting Things about Goldfish
- Goldfish lack a stomach and only have an intestinal tract, and thus cannot digest an excess of proteins.
- Goldfish may change their color by varying the spectrum of light under which they are kept.
- Goldfish produce pigment in response to light. If a goldfish is kept in the dark it will appear lighter in the morning, and over a long period of time will lose its color.
- Goldfish can grow to a maximum length of 22 inches (58.42 cm) and a maximum weight of 9.9 pounds (4.5 kg).
- The longest goldfish measured was 47.4 cm (18.7 in) from snout to tail-fin end in Hapert, The Netherlands.
- The longest fancy goldfish measured was an Oranda called Bruce which measured at 37.2 cm (15 in) in 2002.
- Goldfish may live more than 20 years, but most household goldfish generally live only six to eight years.
- The oldest recorded goldfish lived to 49 years.
- The collective noun for a group of goldfish is a “troubling” of goldfish.
- Goldfish can survive if ice form on the pond’s surface, as long as there is enough oxygen remaining in the water and the pond does not freeze solid.
- Italy passed a law in 2005 which banned the use of goldfish as carnival prizes. Rome has also banned the keeping of goldfish in goldfish bowls, on the premise that it is cruel for a fish to live in such a small space.
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