Watonai Goldfish Care Guide: Simple Steps for Thriving Fish

Diving into the world of goldfish care, you may discover a unique and captivating variety: the Watonai goldfish. These rare, coldwater fish are truly a sight to behold and can make a dazzling addition to your aquarium or pond.

In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about keeping Watonai goldfish happy and healthy. From tank setup to water parameters, and even feeding tips, you will soon have all the information you need to embark on this exciting goldfish journey.

So, get ready to expand your knowledge of these beautiful creatures and bring some Watonai magic into your aquatic life!

Species Overview

Watonai goldfish are a rare and captivating variety, originating from Japan in 1908. They’re believed to have been created by crossing Ryukin and Wakin goldfish. This beautiful breed is known for its unique appearance and fascinating history. Taking proper care of Watonai goldfish requires understanding their specific needs and providing the right conditions.

Here’s a table with essential information about Watonai goldfish:

Property Details
Scientific name Carassius auratus
Common names Watonai, Long-Bodied Ribbontail
Distribution Japan
Size Varies, typically ~8 inches
Lifespan 10-15 years
Diet Omnivorous
Temperament Peaceful
Minimum tank size 40 gallons
Temperature 60-72°F (16-22°C)
pH 6.5-7.5
Water hardness 6-12 dGH
Care level Moderate
Filtration/Water Flow Moderate
Water type Freshwater
Breeding Egg layers
Breeding difficulty Moderate
Compatibility Coldwater fish and other goldfish

Providing optimal care for your Watonai goldfish will ensure their health, well-being, and longevity.

Origins and Natural Habitat

Watonai goldfish have a fascinating history. They were first described in 1908 by Dr. Shinnosuke Matsubara, and are believed to have originated from a cross between the humped-back Ryukin and fantail Wakin goldfish. With their flowing tail fins and streamlined bodies, these Japanese-bred fish have captured the hearts of many aquarium enthusiasts.

It’s important to understand their natural habitat to provide the best care possible. Watonai goldfish are descendants of wild carp originally from Asia. They’re used to living in well-oxygenated ponds and rivers with slow to moderate water flow. Your pond or aquarium setup should replicate these conditions as closely as possible.

Due to their hardy nature, Watonai goldfish can thrive in both indoor aquariums and outdoor ponds. They’re typically found in water with temperatures ranging from 50-75°F. Offering a well-maintained and stable environment helps ensure a healthy, happy Watonai goldfish.

Remember to stay true to their origins by offering proper care and an ideal habitat. With dedication and love, you’ll be able to enjoy the beauty and grace of your Watonai goldfish for years to come.

Physical Characteristics

Size and Shape

Watonai goldfish have a streamlined and elegant body shape, similar to the Wakin goldfish. They typically display a longer body and possess a dorsal fin. Their fancy double ribbon-tails are noteworthy, as they’re often at least as long as their bodies! This makes them an attractive option for fish enthusiasts, particularly for those with ponds.

Color and Markings

When it comes to coloration, Watonai goldfish are rich and lush. You’ll find them in various shades, including deep orange, rich black, or even a combination of the two. Their unique double-finned flowing tail is another standout feature. From an aerial perspective, their appearance is reminiscent of butterflies.

This combination of size, shape, color, and markings makes Watonai goldfish a captivating addition to any pond or aquarium. With proper care, they’re sure to make a striking impact in your aquatic environment.

Lifespan and Growth Rate

Watonai goldfish are a beautiful and rare variety of coldwater fish. Caring for them properly plays a significant role in their lifespan and growth rate. On average, Watonai goldfish measure about 10 to 12 inches at maturity, while some fish may grow much larger in ponds. Well-cared-for Watonai goldfish can reach a maximum size of 18 inches in length, especially with high-quality diets and roomy ponds.

Their lifespan is highly influenced by your care and dedication. Being a relatively new breed, it is hard to determine an exact average lifespan. However, goldfish in general can live for 20 to 40 years when properly cared for, so it’s possible that Watonai could live that long as well.

One of the keys to supporting a healthy lifespan and growth rate for your Watonai goldfish is maintaining ideal water parameters. Monitor and adjust the water chemistry regularly to avoid stress on your fish.

Feeding is another essential factor. Offer a varied diet rich in quality, including pellets specially formulated for goldfish, plus live and frozen foods in moderation. This nourishment ensures they receive the necessary nutrients to grow and thrive.

Remember, as a responsible pet owner, your ongoing attention and care will greatly impact the lifespan and growth rate of your stunning Watonai goldfish.

Diet and Feeding

Feeding your Watonai goldfish a balanced diet is crucial for their health and well-being. Start by providing them with a high-quality pellet or flake food designed specifically for goldfish. This will ensure they receive the essential nutrients they need to thrive.

In addition to their staple diet, you should offer them a variety of live and frozen foods, such as brine shrimp, bloodworms, and daphnia. These protein-rich snacks not only keep them healthy but also help to enrich their natural colors. Make sure to include vegetables like blanched spinach, lettuce, or peas as well, as these provide essential vitamins and minerals.

When feeding your Watonai goldfish, it’s important not to overfeed them. Offer small amounts of food, no more than they can consume in 2-3 minutes, twice a day. Overfeeding can lead to poor water quality and various health issues. If you notice any uneaten food after feeding time, try reducing the amount you offer in the next meal.

Finally, a helpful tip for maintaining their digestive health is to soak the pellet or flake food in water for a few minutes before feeding. This will soften the food and make it easier for your goldfish to digest, preventing potential bloating and swim bladder issues.

Behavior and Temperament

Watonai goldfish are known for their peaceful and social nature. They possess a classic goldfish temperament, making them an excellent addition to your aquarium. You’ll enjoy watching them explore the tank, as they are curious and always on the lookout for food.

These goldfish swim at a slightly slower pace than their close relative, the Wakin goldfish, due to their less streamlined bodies. However, they still gracefully glide around the aquarium, providing you with hours of entertainment.

Keep in mind that Watonai goldfish appreciate the company of other peaceful fish. So, when planning your aquarium community, take their friendly disposition into account. By doing so, you can ensure a harmonious environment for all your aquatic pets to thrive in.

As the caretaker of these beautiful fish, it’s vital to maintain a clean and stress-free environment for them. A happy and healthy Watonai goldfish will display their curious and social behavior, making your aquarium an even more delightful place to observe and enjoy.

Care and Tank Requirements

Tank Size

Your Watonai Goldfish will need at least a 30-gallon tank, and if you’re planning to keep more than one, add an extra 15 to 20 gallons of space per fish to give them adequate room.

Water Parameters (Temperature and pH)

Maintaining a stable water environment is crucial for your goldfish’s health. Watonai Goldfish thrive in temperatures between 65 to 75°F (18 to 24°C). Be sure to maintain a pH level between 7 and 8. Regularly check these parameters using a reliable water testing kit.

Tank Setup and Decorations

To bring out the vibrant colors of your Watonai Goldfish, opt for a dark substrate, such as soft sand or rounded pebble, as they’ll protect their delicate fins from scratches or injuries. While including tank decorations, keep it minimal to ensure ample swimming space. Live aquatic plants, such as Anubias and Java Moss, make a great addition, as they help enhance water quality.

Filtration and Aeration

A good filtration system is essential for keeping your goldfish healthy. A high-quality filter keeps the water clean while promoting beneficial bacteria growth. Consider using a sponge or canister filter for efficient filtration. Moreover, ensuring proper aeration is vital for your fish. Using an air pump or airstone will help oxygenate the water and prevent any potential health issues in your goldfish.

Suitable Tank Mates

Watonai goldfish are peaceful fish that can get along with various tank mates. However, it’s crucial to remember that goldfish produce a significant amount of waste, so it’s essential to avoid overcrowding your tank.

When choosing tank mates, consider fish that can coexist with the water parameters required for your Watonai, as well as fish that are not too aggressive or can’t nip at your goldfish’s fancy tail fins.

Here are some suitable tank mates for your Watonai goldfish:

  • Zebra danios
  • White cloud minnows
  • Rosy barbs
  • Bristlenose plecos
  • Ghost shrimp

Remember, the key to a harmonious tank is providing ample space for all tank inhabitants and maintaining proper water quality. By doing so, you’ll ensure that your Watonai and its tank mates thrive together in their aquarium environment.

Breeding Process

To breed Watonai goldfish, you’ll need to set up a separate breeding tank or pond with proper conditions. Make sure you provide a well-filtered, clean environment with a water temperature of around 20°C (68°F).

It’s essential to introduce a sexually mature male and female pair. You can identify males by their slimmer body and tubercles (small white spots) on the gill covers and pectoral fins, while females have a rounder body shape when viewed from above.

Feed your goldfish a protein-rich diet, including brine shrimp, daphnia, and bloodworms, to encourage spawning. Add spawning mops or live plants like Anacharis to the breeding tank, as they will serve as a safe place for the eggs to be deposited.

Once your goldfish lay eggs, it’s crucial to remove the parents to prevent them from eating the eggs. Keep a close eye on the water quality, as it plays a vital role in the hatching process. The eggs should hatch within 4-7 days, depending on the water temperature.

Once the fry emerge, provide them with specialized fry food and baby brine shrimp. Gradually increase the food size as they grow and monitor to ensure a clean environment, which will help them thrive.

Common Diseases and Treatments

Ich: Your Watonai goldfish may experience this common parasitic infection, known as Ich. Tiny white spots appear on their skin and fins, causing discomfort and irritation. To treat Ich, gradually raise the tank temperature to 86°F and add aquarium salt to the water.

Bacterial Infections: Sometimes your Watonai goldfish might suffer from bacterial infections which can cause fin rot, ulcers, or dropsy. You can prevent these illnesses by keeping the tank clean and maintaining high water quality. If infection does occur, use specifically designed medications for goldfish.

Flukes: These are flatworm parasites that can affect the gills and skin of your Watonai goldfish. Symptoms include difficulty in breathing, excessive mucus production, and redness. To counter flukes, medicate the tank with a chemical treatment according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Maintaining your goldfish’s health starts with preventative measures:

  • Have a proper filtration system in place
  • Regularly check water parameters (ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH)
  • Weekly 20-30% water changes
  • Maintain a balanced diet and avoid overfeeding
  • Quarantine new fish before introducing them into the tank

By following these practices, you can reduce the chances of your Watonai goldfish falling ill and enjoy their captivating beauty.


In the end, Watonai goldfish are a unique and captivating addition to your aquatic ecosystem, which will undoubtedly bring joy and beauty to your aquarium or pond. With adequate care and attention to their environment, these rare fish can thrive and provide an extraordinary visual experience for you and your guests.

Remember that providing a proper diet, suitable water conditions, and sufficient space for your Watonai goldfish is essential in maintaining their health and longevity. By following the care guidelines discussed in this article, you will be well-equipped to ensure your Watonai goldfish live a happy and healthy life.