According to Wikipedia, goldfish are "Goldfish are popular pond fish, since they are small, inexpensive, colorful, and very hardy".
No they are not. It a myth.
I have to hand them the popular bit. I can see why - with PR like that, a lot of parents will see them as a great pet. Billed as cheap and easy to care for, even the busiest family can cope with having one.
Unfortunately it's not actually true. Take cheap for a start. The fish are cheap, but you can't just plonk them in a glass bowl of tap water. No, you need:
- a proper fish tank
- a pump to circulate the water
- stuff for treating the water
- rocks or something to hide in - except you can't just use a rock from the garden, you have to use an artificial resin rock
- plants - either real ones that get eaten, or fake ones that look, well, fake
- chemicals for treating the tap water
Ok, not cheap then - how about easy?
They fail on that part too. They certainly seem to need more care than I remember, changing the water weekly, cleaning filters, measuring additives. At least they only need fed once a day.
However, the biggest drawback of all is the 'hardy' part. Despite carefully following all the instructions about letting the tank settle in for a few days before adding fish, carefully measuring additives to remove chlorine, and letting the water from the pet show slowly mix with the tank water, you still come in the next day to find them floating upside down in the tank, and have to explain where they went.
On the upside, at least they are all pretty much identical, and have no personality to speak off, so sneaking in Salt II and Pepper II when they return from their 'holiday' should not be too hard
At least until the next morning. Which reminds me - must pick up a net.