As we’ve discussed in the past, your goldfish need so much more than a small bowl and some fish food.
A fish known for its simplicity and hardiness, the goldfish in any form is unfortunately the victim of several dangerous misconceptions regarding its care. The assumption is that you can give your goldfish a bowl, some clean water, a bit of gravel, and nothing more. You feed them a few flakes every day. This goes on, until they pass away after a few months to a year.
This is considered the norm for goldfish care.
The So-Called Secret To Long Life In Goldfish
However, did you know that under the right care conditions, goldfish can live for at least twenty-five years? It’s true. The oldest goldfishes in the world top out at 40+ years of age.
There is no miraculous reason for this. A goldfish owner with a 20-year-old goldfish does not have to do anything remarkable to achieve this. They simply have to know what a goldfish needs to be healthy and happy. Feeding them a good diet is one example. Another would be making sure you are purchasing an aquarium which is going to be well-suited to their needs and lifestyle.
Again, you don’t have to go to any significant extremes here. With some basic research, you will be able to see clearly how to shop for and purchase a tank your goldfish, and whatever else you put in your aquarium, will love.
Why Your Goldfish Aquarium Is So Important
First of all, let’s just get rid of the notion of a fish bowl altogether. They are simply too small for goldfish in any form or fashion. Bowls are generally only available in sizes as large as five gallons. This is significantly less than what your goldfish will need.
Take the Common goldfish. They can grow as large as a full foot in size. They love to swim quickly throughout their environment. They also tend to leave behind more waste than many other types of fish. For all of these reasons, they need plenty of room in which to move around comfortably. Five gallons, particularly if we’re talking about a tank that doesn’t have any filtration, is not going to cut it by a long shot.
Keep in mind that the Common goldfish isn’t the largest goldfish type out there. Not by a long shot.
What Kind Of Tank Should I Get For My Goldfish?
Breeders and hobbyists all agree that you need a tank that is at least ten gallons. In fact, many suggest going up another size for the minimum to twenty gallons. Obviously, you will want to take the potential limitations of your own space into consideration. Having said that, anything less than ten gallons is really not going to make for a very happy life for any fish you put in it.
Keeping in mind these tank sizes, we can now take a closer look at some of the best specific tanks for goldfish that are currently available. If you want to start with the best possible environments for your aquarium dreams, these are the tanks you will want to check out first.
Which Factors Are Most Important When Choosing A Goldfish Tank?
Different people are going to have different needs when it comes to finding the best goldfish aquarium. If you are new to shopping for one, there are a number of factors that are going to help influence the one that will best suit whatever you have in mind:
We have already made it clear that you want to start with at least twenty gallons in a fish tank. Before you start looking for something that will work for your needs, try to estimate how many fish you’re going to want at the start. It is usually best to start with one or two, but you may feel that you are capable of handling more than that. It also doesn’t hurt to purchase a tank with an eye towards getting more fish for it later on.
Paying attention to which materials are used to make fish tanks is one of the most important things to keep in mind. You want materials that are built to resist breaks, leaking, and even scratches whenever possible. The two main options are glass and acrylic. While both are quite good, many find that glass offers better resistance to scratches and certain types of leaking, and a better overall shape for the goldfish to swim comfortably. Acrylic fish tanks do offer a more aesthetically-pleasing view to outsiders though.
We’ve touched on this before, but it is well worth repeating a second time. When researching companies that manufacture aquariums, it almost goes without saying that you want a company with a peerless reputation for quality in their products. One of the biggest strengths with acrylic fish tanks, for example, is the way they are generally considered to be stronger than glass tanks. They are also lighter than glass tanks, which means cleaning and carrying them is going to be a lot easier, as well.
Decide now if you want a tank with or without the equipment you need for setup.
Ideally, you’re going to find an aquarium with a filter that works flawlessly. However, you may have to go out and find one anyway.
Opening: There are different tanks with different types of lids, hoods, openings, or whatever the case may be. If you don’t have a whole lot of space, and every inch counts, you want to focus your search on tanks with low-profile hoods, or something else along similar lines.
Reviews For The Best Goldfish Tanks
1. Aqueon Aquarium 20 Gallon Long
While the height of your aquarium is important, what matters arguably more is the length of the tank. An ideal tank is going to give your goldfish plenty of room to swim around, without having to turn around as much. Goldfish generally like to swim from one end of the tank to the next.
To that end, the 20-gallon long aquarium from Aqueon is going to be a great choice for many hobbyists. Coming in at twenty gallons, the tank is longer, but shallower. Depth is important with any aquarium you might purchase, but it’s not the only thing you’re going to want to keep in mind.
With this option, keep in mind that all you’re getting is the tank. This can be very freeing for those who want to be able to choose their own equipment. At the same time, it may not be a great idea for anyone who is new to keeping goldfish, and may not want to be left to figure out every single thing they are going to need.
The choice is yours to make. However, keep in mind that at the end of the day, building your goldfish aquarium piece by piece is not too terribly difficult.
2. SeaClear Acrylic Aquarium Combo Set
Available in a fantastically-diverse array of sizes and shapes, this is a good example of why quality is so important in the aquarium you choose. You want something that will ideally stand the test of time. Don’t forget that your goldfish can live a quarter of a century with good care. It stands to reason that you will want them in something they can enjoy for years to come.
Another component to this aquarium that we absolutely love is the view it provides. Thanks to careful attention and exceptional materials in the production phase, this aquarium set for goldfish offers a degree of clarity that will make it wonderfully easy to appreciate your goldfish in their daily routine.
You will also appreciate the fact that this tank is made from acrylic. This means an aquarium that is extremely durable, and highly unlikely to leak or ever break. Many goldfish owners who choose this tank, which starts in the 20-gallon tank, do so because it is a good aquarium for homes with kids and pets. It also comes with at least a few of the things you’re going to need to get started.
Just keep in mind that acrylic tanks are a little less resistant to scratches than some choices. Also, the florescent light doesn’t seem to be very popular with some customers.
3. Tetra Complete Aquarium Kit
If you’re looking for something that will give you everything you need to get started with a basic aquarium setup, the Tetra Complete Aquarium Kit is going to be a fantastic choice. While perhaps not ideal for those who want to keep a lot of fish, it is perfect for those who are just starting out with one or two fish.
Unpacking everything in this kit, you’re going to find that the name lives up to what it promises. Not only do you have everything you need to get set up with a basic aquarium, but the Complete Aquarium Kit from Tetra is also ridiculously easy to set up. This kit is a very popular choice for parents who want to give their children a start in keeping fish.
The filter is also pretty impressive. Not only does it do the job as advertised, but it is also exceptionally quiet. We also appreciate the fact that despite how much stuff it comes with, you will find yourself still with plenty of room for additional plants and decorations. The LED light associated with this kit is also one of the better selections we have found.
4. Tetra 55 Gallon Aquarium Kit
Looking for something a bit bigger than the choices we’ve covered? If you know for a fact that you’re going to want a number of fish in your aquarium right from the start, you’re not going to want to settle for 20 gallons. You probably won’t want to waste your time on a 40-gallon option either.
While the price tag for this second entry on our list for Tetra can strike some as a bit on the steep side, it is hard to argue with the quality, the size of the tank, and what those things will mean to your efforts at keeping goldfish. Much like the entry above, you’re going to find that you’re getting everything you need for an aquarium setup right out of the box. You shouldn’t have to buy anything else, unless you want more plants and decorations.
Also, as is also the case with the above Tetra kit, we would say everything included functions exactly as it should. This is not always the case with aquariums. Some kits are a little lacking in certain areas. Filtration can be one example, which leads to the need for an additional purchase. You shouldn’t have to worry about that here.
Remember that this is a very large tank, with measurements of 51.90″ L x 24.40″ W x 16.40″ H. The tank in of itself weighs nearly eighty pounds. Once you’ve added your water, fish, material for the bottom, and everything else, the weight is over 500 pounds. Keeping all of this in mind, it is something that will occupy a significant amount of time in your space. Make sure you’re going to have plenty of room for not only the aquarium itself, but in terms of being able to comfortably maintain it, change the filter, and so forth.
5. Marina LED Aquarium Kit
While available in several other sizes, you are obviously going to want to at least start with the 20-gallon option. This is considered by many to be one of the top aquariums for beginners. There are several reasons as to why this is the case. All of them point to an aquarium that is well suited for those just starting out, as well as those who many not have as much space as they might like.
This is another good kit for those who want to have everything they’re going to need right there in one place. Because this is such a solid starter aquarium kit, you’re also going to appreciate the fact that everything is extremely easy to set up. The instructions are very good indeed at laying everything out in the simplest terms possible.
Again, while compact, the 20-gallon tank itself will be just fine for one or two goldfish. Even maintenance for the tank is refreshingly straightforward. All you need to do is make sure the filter is changed out every month. Aquarium maintenance instructions are included, as well. You won’t have to worry about a thing.
However, some users have complained that the filter is not as strong as it needs to be. While this is something that you can obviously decide for yourself, it can be helpful to keep in mind that goldfish leave behind more waste than many other types of fish.
At the end of the day, this is a quiet, compact, and very affordable aquarium for those who are looking to get started on the right foot.
6. Skroutz Aquarium Starter Kit
Our look at the best aquarium starter kits for goldfish continues with this worthwhile entry from Skroutz. While the name may strike you as unusual, note that this is a well-reviewed, widely respected manufacturer of aquarium kits and similar products for enthusiasts of all ages.
One of the more interesting things about this tank is the fact that it clocks in at 29-gallons. This makes it a good option for anyone who wants something a little bigger than a 20-gallon tank, but doesn’t want to go all the way up forty gallons. The Skroutz Aquarium Starter Kit is a nice compromise between those sizes.
The tank includes a hood that is designed for the aquarium to function well in small spaces. Everything about this aquarium is designed to be as compact as possible. At the same time, we would venture to say that everything included in the box is going to work exactly as it should. You may want to supplement or replace the filter, as a small number of people have complained about it, but most find it to be just fine for 1-3 goldfish.
The only thing we would suggest replacing, or at least supplementing, would be the fish food that is included with the kit. While the food is fine for goldfish, you want to give them a reasonably varied diet. What you want to be doing is getting as close as possible to the things they would like to eat in the wild. As far as the best food for goldfish is concerned, you have some great choices available.
Getting the right aquarium is clearly one of the most important decisions you will make as a goldfish owner. With so many different tanks and kits on the market, it can be easy to feel a little overwhelmed by just how much is out there.
Don’t worry. Using our guide as your frame of reference, it shouldn’t be at all difficult to find an aquarium that is going to meet your goldfish and other sea creatures’ needs for as long as you have them.