How many different species of goldfish are there?
#40068. Asked by Linus_337. (Oct 18 03 4:28 PM)
Only 1 (Carassius auratus), all the varieties are physical traits bred into the fish, but they haven't been changed biologically to warrant separate species distinction.|
Not many of the "goldfish" I have seen look like the normal variety. Are there lots of different species?
No, there's only one species of goldfish - Carassius auratus, but over the centuries many different varieties have been selectively bred. Many of these look quite unlike the stereotypical common goldfish.
The common goldfish, the comet (this has a pointy tail) and the shubunkin (which is blue and speckled) are the most widely seen of the straight-tailed varities. These are generally robust and easy to keep and grow fairly large.
The so-called fancy goldfish, which have round bodies, long flowing fins and often deformed eyes and things, tend to reach smaller adult sizes and are much more sensitive fish. Quite often, the fancy varieties tend to suffer from illnesses, especially bacterial infections, if you don't keep their water in really good order.
[Edited to add reference - McG]
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