The Complete Guide to Keeping Shubunkin Goldfish: Tank Size, Care, Health and Lifespan

Shubunkin Goldfish are a popular type of freshwater fish that are known for their beautiful, multi-colored scales and active personalities. Originating from Japan, they have become a beloved species among aquarium enthusiasts around the world.

You should remember that while these fish may seem low-maintenance, they require a certain level of care to ensure their well-being. With the right approach, you can create a safe and comfortable environment for your Shubunkin Goldfish to live a long and fulfilling life.

In this guide, I’ll explore everything you need to know about keeping Shubunkin Goldfish, including tank size and setup, diet, general care and maintenance, health concerns, lifespan, and breeding. So, let’s get started!

How to set up a Tank for Shubunkin Goldfish?

When it comes to setting up a tank for your Shubunkin Goldfish, there are several factors to consider. Here’s what you need to know:

Minimum Tank Size

Shubunkin Goldfish are active swimmers and can grow up to 12 inches in length. Therefore, they require a spacious tank to accommodate their needs.

The minimum recommended tank size for one adult Shubunkin Goldfish is 30 gallons, with an additional 10 gallons for each additional fish. This means that if you plan to keep two Shubunkin Goldfish, your tank should be at least 40 gallons.

Ideal Tank Setup and Decorations

When it comes to decorating your Shubunkin Goldfish’s tank, there are a few things to keep in mind. Firstly, provide ample space for your fish to swim and explore.

You can include plants, rocks, and driftwood to create a natural environment for them. Be sure to avoid sharp objects that may harm your fish.

Water Quality and Filtration

These fish are sensitive to changes in water quality, so it’s important to maintain a clean and healthy tank environment. This means regular water changes and the use of a good filtration system. Aim for a pH level between 7.0 and 7.4, and keep the water temperature between 65-75°F.

Lighting and Temperature

Shubunkin Goldfish require regular periods of light and darkness to maintain their health and circadian rhythm. A light cycle of 8-12 hours per day is recommended.

Besides, it’s essential to maintain a stable temperature in the tank to avoid stressing your fish. Avoid placing the tank near windows or heating sources that may cause temperature fluctuations.

What Do Shubunkin Goldfish Eat?

A healthy and balanced diet is essential for the well-being of your Shubunkin Goldfish. Here’s what you need to know:

Feeding Frequency and Portions

Shubunkin Goldfish have a hearty appetite and are known for their love of food. Feed them in moderation to avoid overfeeding and its negative effects on their health. Feed your fish small portions two to three times a day, and avoid overfeeding to prevent obesity and digestive problems.

Suitable Food Types for Shubunkin Goldfish

As they are omnivorous they can eat a variety of foods. Commercial pellets or flakes are a good staple food for your fish, but you can also provide them with live or frozen foods such as brine shrimp, daphnia, or bloodworms for added variety and nutrition.

Avoid Overfeeding

Overfeeding is a common mistake in fish care and can have negative effects on your Shubunkin Goldfish’s health. When fish are overfed, excess food can pollute the water, leading to poor water quality, bacterial growth, and other health issues.

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Additionally, overfeeding can lead to obesity and digestive problems, which can impact your fish’s overall health and lifespan. To avoid overfeeding, monitor your fish’s feeding habits and adjust the amount of food accordingly. It’s better to feed your fish small portions several times a day rather than one large meal.

General Care and Maintenance of Shubunkin Goldfish

Proper care and maintenance are essential for the health and longevity of your Shubunkin Goldfish. Here’s what you need to know:

Regular Tank Cleaning and Water Changes

Maintaining good water quality is crucial for the health of your Shubunkin Goldfish. To keep your tank clean and healthy, perform regular water changes of about 20-30% every week.

Use a siphon to remove any uneaten food, debris, and waste from the bottom of the tank. Clean the tank walls and decorations with a soft brush or sponge, but avoid using soap or detergents that can harm your fish.

Monitor Water Parameters

Keeping track of the water parameters in your tank is essential for the health of your Shubunkin Goldfish. Use a water testing kit to monitor the pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate levels regularly.

If you notice any unusual behavior or symptoms in your fish, such as lethargy, loss of appetite, or discoloration, test the water immediately and take appropriate action.

Handling and Transporting

When handling or transporting your Shubunkin Goldfish, be gentle and avoid sudden movements. Use a net to catch your fish and transfer them to a temporary holding tank or container. When transporting your fish, make sure to provide them with adequate oxygen and keep the water temperature stable.

Avoiding Common Mistakes

Taking care of your Shubunkin Goldfish requires attention to detail, as some common mistakes can have serious consequences for their health.

Overfeeding, overstocking, and using inadequate equipment are all issues that can harm your fish, so it’s essential to pay close attention to their needs and ensure they receive appropriate care.

So, do your research and provide your fish with a suitable tank environment, appropriate diet, and proper care to ensure their well-being.

How to Maintain Shubunkin Goldfish Health?

Maintaining good health is essential for your Shubunkin Goldfish’s overall well-being. Here’s what you need to know:

Common Health Issues and Symptoms

Shubunkin Goldfish are generally hardy and resilient fish, but they can still fall ill or be affected by common health issues. Keep an eye out for symptoms such as lethargy, loss of appetite, rapid breathing, abnormal swimming behavior, or discoloration.

Common health issues in Shubunkin Goldfish include bacterial infections, parasitic infestations, and swim bladder disorders.

Preventative Measures

Maintaining the health of fish requires proactive measures that focus on prevention. To prevent common health issues, maintain good water quality, avoid overfeeding, and provide a healthy and balanced diet.

Quarantine new fish before introducing them to your tank to prevent the spread of diseases. If you suspect that your fish is ill, quarantine them immediately and seek professional advice from a veterinarian or aquatic specialist.

Disease Treatments

Treatment for fish diseases depends on the specific issue and its severity. In some cases, simple remedies such as salt baths or medication may be effective. In more severe cases, professional treatment may be required.

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Dealing with Injuries or Illnesses

If your Shubunkin Goldfish is injured or ill, take immediate action to prevent the problem from worsening. Quarantine your fish in a separate tank and monitor their behavior closely. If necessary, seek professional advice or treatment from a veterinarian or aquatic specialist.

The Lifespan and Growth of Shubunkin Goldfish

Shubunkin goldfish have an average lifespan of 10-15 years in captivity, but they can live for up to 20 years with proper care and maintenance. Several factors affect the lifespan of Shubunkin goldfish, including genetics, water quality, diet, and environmental conditions.

To promote healthy growth and ensure a long lifespan for your Shubunkin goldfish these factors play important roles. A brief discussion of these factors is given below:


They are omnivores and require a varied diet consisting of both plant and animal-based foods. You can feed them a combination of high-quality flakes, pellets, and fresh vegetables such as peas and lettuce.

Proper Tank Size and Water Quality

To ensure that Shubunkin goldfish thrive and live longer lives, consider the appropriate tank size and maintain good water quality. These factors play a crucial role in promoting healthy growth and the overall well-being of the fish.

You should provide them with a spacious tank with good filtration and water circulation to maintain optimal water quality. Monitor water parameters regularly and perform water changes as needed to maintain clean and healthy water conditions.

Avoid Overcrowding

Stress can weaken the immune system, making fish more susceptible to diseases and shortening their lifespan.

In order to ensure the optimal health and growth of your aquatic pets, take steps to prevent overcrowding in the tank. Providing sufficient hiding spots and plants can help reduce stress and create a more natural and comfortable environment for your fish.

Can the Care Guide for Tiger Shovelnose Catfish be Applied to Shubunkin Goldfish?

Yes, the tiger shovelnose catfish care guide can be applied to shubunkin goldfish. Both species require similar water parameters, such as temperature and pH levels. They also have comparable dietary needs, as they are both omnivorous and can thrive on a diet of pellets, flakes, and live foods.

A Care Guide for Shubunkin Goldfish

Does Having Driftwood in the Tank Affect the Care and Lifespan of Shubunkin Goldfish?

Having driftwood in the tank does not negatively affect the care and lifespan of Shubunkin goldfish. In fact, driftwood’s suitability for goldfish can be beneficial as it provides hiding spots, encourages natural behaviors, and creates a visually appealing environment. Ensuring the driftwood is properly cleaned and sized is essential for the health of the goldfish.


Keeping Shubunkin Goldfish can be a rewarding experience for fish enthusiasts who are ready for the commitments and responsibilities that come with it. Providing a spacious tank, proper care, and a healthy diet can ensure a long and happy life for your Shubunkins.

With proper attention to their needs, these beautiful and active fish can bring years of joy and entertainment to your home aquarium. Always remember to research and consult with experts or professionals to ensure the health and happiness of your fish.

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