Even though it is uncommon, it's every goldfish keeper's worst nightmare; goldfish have been known to jump out of their tanks, aquariums and even ponds, quite often leaping to their death. There are a few explanations for this suicidal behavior.
Goldfish become less active in colder water temperatures,
hibernating much like bears, but in warmer temperatures they spawn, or breed, increasing their
activity. Goldfish are very vigorous breeders and are extremely active during this time.
The males chase the females with the greatest of enthusiasm. In all of the
excitement, a goldfish could unintentionally leap out of the water, falling
prey to predators or suffocation.
To Catch a Goldfish
The goldfish comfort zone for water temperature is 65 to 75 degrees, but if the water becomes too warm for them they may try leaping out of their environment. Goldfish in too warm of temperatures may present symptoms of raised scaled, referred to as pine coning.
Goldfish infected with parasites often swim sporadically; flashing against objects. In their desperation to escape the discomfort, they might be tempted to leap out of the tank, intentionally or unintentionally.
Goldfish that have not been provided fresh, oxygenated, water may exhibit this same behavior, but in a short amount of time become sick and inactive.
Maybe a little far fetched, but possible; a single goldfish, the lonely guy, may jump from the tank in an effort to get to the fish it sees in the reflection of a glass tank. Goldfish swim in schools and feel much more confident, safe and happier with other goldfish.
Make certain that the water level in your goldfish tank or pond is low enough to prevent any of these accidents from occurring. To keep your fish safe, the length of your longest fish should match the space in between the surface and the top of the tank, and yet another reason to have a larger tank for your goldfish. Most aquariums come equipped with lids, but goldfish fare much better in open topped tanks with water surface exposed to greater amounts of fresh air. If you feel more comfortable with a top, consider a screen instead.
In the event your goldfish jumps out of its water, return it to the tank ASAP, even if you believe the fish has already expired. Gently guide the fish through the water in cupped hands. Using a finger, gently message its underbelly periodically. Give it time, and you may be surprised. Use the 'Garlic Tonic' with your next water change.
A recent post on this site shares such an amazing experience. Haley's black moor was found on the floor, completely hard and dried out, but miraculously came back to life when returned to its bowl. This article is dedicated to her and Fish.
Author: Brenda Rand