Tagged: fighting fish breeding

How to Revive a DEAD Butterfly Koi, Gold fish, Fighting fish


12″ Giant orange gold fish about 7 years ago- he lived for 3 more years
14″ butterfly Koi-last year- was still alive when I last saw her before I moved.


The problem with raising large fish in tanks instead of ponds is keeping the water clean and stable.
Both gold fish and Koi pollute the water very quickly with their poop. And while I spent hours and hours every week working on filters, tank cleaning, water changes- it still got away from me.

The main symptoms of toxic water is that your fish clamps its mouth shut- doesn’t move gills or open mouth for short spans of time- then will open and close mouth/gills a couple times and stop again. If you ever see this behavior- you’ve got to get your fish OUT of that water within like 10 minutes. Forget treating the water- or changing half the water- it wont be enough. Another symptom of toxic water is red appearing in their fins and tail. It’s blood cells that have hemorrhaged.

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My first fish to die was my “feeder” 22 cent gold fish that grew to be a foot long with a fancy tail.
The power had been out for a few hours the day before- The next morning – the fish had some red veins showing in his tail. (That’s the other symptom of toxic water) I grabbed my bottle of pond rescue – treated the water and checked the canister filter-It was pretty dirty but mostly it smelled toxic! Something had gone very wrong in the chemistry when the power had gone out. I unhooked it and cleaned it out completely. There was no saving any of it to activate the new filter. Took like an hour to clean it all out and set it back up. I hooked the filter system back in and watched the fish swim around for around 1`5 minutes- He seemed a little better- but the water had become a little cloudy while the filter was off.

I walked away and worked on a project in my bedroom for a few hours. Someone knocked on my house door and as I walked past the tank to answer the door- I saw the goldfish dive downward-flipping onto his back as he glided into the far corner- back arched and gills flared- I remember yelling NO!!!! He wasn’t breathing or moving- he was totally gone. Instinctively I ran to the tank and grabbed him and lifted him up out of the water- plunged him back under and lifted out again. Did this about 7 or 8 times before his mouth opened. (no gill movement. Eyes glazed over- totally limp. I yelled for my friend to come fill up my spare 30 gal tank- I started holding him over the airstone bubbles and I continued to lift him out of the water every few minutes- also pulled him backwards thru the water- forcing both bubbles and water thru his gills.Moved him to the clean tank with all the bubble stones (4 or 5) pushing all around his face and gills.

2 hours past before he showed any sign of life at all- his eye rolled around and looked at me- it was another hour before his gills fluttered. total of 4 hours before he moved his mouth. at 5 hours he finally moved his body- This whole time I was holding his body in the correct upright position- air bubbles and pulling him over and over backwards thru the water. I still lifted him up and out every 5 or so minutes- this would trigger him to take a gulp of air. At 6 hours- he made his first effort to swim. It was about 3 more hours before he was able to stay upright on his own. I smashed up green peas(frozen/thawed/shell removed) and put them in his mouth. I force fed him for 3 days before he finally pooped. He slowly got stronger and was fine by a week later.

Same happened to my Koi years later. This fish took 30 minutes for a sign of life. 6 hours before could stay upright by herself. She was fine by the next day.

It works on fish who die from their water turning toxic.
It took over 6 hours to recover enough to allow me to let go of them at all.
It failed to work on guppies or small cory cat fish or angel fish.

koi revived from dead video link


As long as the ants haven’t gotten to him-and his eyes haven’t shriveled- he likely isn’t really dead. Pick him up- put him back in the water and stir him around – lifting him out at least once per minute- after around 5-10 minutes- his body will soften and he should start pumping his gills. Takes about an hour before he can surface for air by himself so you’ll have to lift him up at least once every 3 minutes. I saved 4 or 5 this way.

Why is this possible? Fighting fish breath air. The only reason to be in water for them is to keep fins wet. They can actually drown if unable to reach the surface to get air.


Cats like to catch fighting fish!

A note about fighting fish-
First- fighting fish don’t live long when kept in a small container. Its cruel. They will live up to 3 years if kept in a 1 gallon tank with air bubble and under gravel filter system. Unlike most fish- the cleaner the water- the healthier the fish. Always change all the water. Always make sure they have access to the surface (dont put them under plants) If they are in a filtered 1 gal tank- change the water once every 2 weeks. IF THEY ARE IN A CUP OR OTHER NON FILTERED CONTAINER change water once every 3 days.
They are VERY sensitive to dirty water.
For healthy fish- feed frozen(thawed) green peas pressed thru a clean garlic press- one pea 3-4x per week. If in a 1 gal tank- keep a few cory cat fish in the tank as well.