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Description of the Goldfish
People have bred a wide number of different colors, shapes, and sizes in these fish. Even their body shapes vary drastically. Their coloration varies, but includes white, orange, black, red, yellow, brown, and any combination of the above.
Size also varies greatly depending on the fish. Some measure just an inch or two long, others surpass a foot in length. The largest recorded individual grew to a length of 19 in.
Interesting Facts About the Goldfish
You can win one at your local fair, but these creatures are actually quite astounding in a number of ways. Learn more about what makes this species so unique, below.
Ancestry – Over a thousand years ago, people in ancient China began selectively breeding the Prussian carp for gold coloration. Throughout the course of time, this selection lead to the development of the modern-day Goldfish
Separate Species – In fact, these fish diverged from their Prussian carp ancestors so long ago the researchers recognize them as a separate species, Carassius auratus. The Prussian carp has a scientific name of Carassius gibelio.
Not a Koi – While many people believe that koi fish are simply larger versions of Goldfish, this isn’t the case. People bred the koi from an entirely different species of carp, the Amur carp. Researchers recognize the two fish as genetically distinct.
Colorblind? – Though they seem primitive, the color of these beautiful fish isn’t lost on them! That’s because these little creatures are not colorblind. They can see blue, green, red, and ultraviolet.
Habitat of the Goldfish
The wild ancestors of these fish lived in slow-moving waters. They thrived even in areas with low oxygen and muddy water. This is why these fish adjust easily to living in manmade ponds. They also prefer habitats with aquatic vegetation to eat.