How to Identify and Take Care of Black Moor Fish

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Identify and Take Care of Black Moor Fish
Identify and Take Care of Black Moor Fish (Image: Author:KDBlackmore - Image courtesy of wikipedia, under the GNU Free Documentation License)

The black moors (carassius auratus) belongs to the family Cyprinidae. Also called "fancy goldfish," it is one of the most popular breeds of goldfish. It is hardy and well-suited for beginner aquarists. This fish is very friendly and sociable, and may even follow you as you walk by. Read on to learn how to care for your black moor fish.

Things You'll Need

  • Fish tank
  • Filter and heater
  • Aquarium gravel (one pound per gallon)
  • Pump (optional)
  • Basic test kits (pH, dH)
  • Fish tank decorations
  • Pet fish food

Identify black moor fish by coloring and body features to ensure that you provide proper care. This breed of goldfish has a rounded, egg-shaped body with flowing, elongated fins. It grows up to 4 inches in length. It has metallic scales and is velvety black in color -- hence the name. Unlike other goldfish varieties, a black moor stays black, even as it ages. Aside from its deep black color, one of the most distinctive features are its bulbous eyes, which protrude sideways. The males develop white tubercles on the gill covers and leading rays of the pectoral fins during the breeding season.

House your black moors in a 36-gallon aquarium. Clean out the tank if it is newly acquired. (See Resources below on how to clean a fish tank).

Set up the aquarium for your black moors. Thoroughly rinse the aquarium gravel with hot water and spread it in the tank floor, at least 3 inches deep. Slope the gravel from the back to better showcase your pet fish.

Install an aquarium filter to maintain the quality of water in the tank. Black moors tend to produce a lot of waste and can get quite messy. Attach your heater to the tank, setting it to maintain the water temperature at 40 to 77 degrees Fahrenheit (4 to 25 degrees Celsius).

Plant fake plants or hardy aquarium plants because black moors like to eat live plants and may often uproot them. Avoid any decor or plastic plants that have sharp points as these may damage their protruding eyes.

Maintain optimum water conditions for these goldfish. They need tank water to stay within the range of 6.0 to 8.0 pH, and water hardness of between 5 to 19dH. Monitor these water conditions with the aquarium test kits on a regular basis.

Feed black moors with a diet of foods specially developed for goldfish, which are available at the local pet store. Alternatively, feed them flake foods such as green flakes, and supplement these with brine shrimp, bloodworms and tubifex worms. Because of its eyes these fish have poor eyesight, and will therefore have a much harder time finding food that floats around in the water before settling down. For this reason, you should not keep black moors in the same tank as faster or more aggressive species to ensure they get enough to eat.

Provide your black moors with fellow goldfish for tank mates. They can also get along well with other non-aggressive species of fish. They are middle-level swimmers and safe with smaller fish.

Tips & Warnings

  • PH is a measure of the level of acidity or alkalinity of your aquarium water, using a scale of 1 to 14. Most commonly, freshwater fish need water at a range between 6.5 to 7.5 pH. For this reason, if you have a wide range of different species, your best compromise is a pH of 7.0 DH is a measure of water hardness, which refers to the levels of dissolved minerals in your aquarium water. The recommended dH for a freshwater tank is 4 to 6.
  • Unlike other goldfish, black moors do not do well in outdoor ponds.

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