Skeletal remains


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I assume this looks about right for a 7 inch comet goldfish last seen on June 18th, so a little over seven weeks ago or so? :( Kind of doubting the alternative possibility that a heron regurgitated the skeleton of a similar sized fish mid-day while we were home without being seen or disturbing anything in the pond, including the other fish. What’s amazing is this was while I was still monitoring the pond parameters regularly due to having just added the fish a week prior and everything always looked perfect. The missing fish also appeared to be in excellent health right up to going missing and I’d had him since he was a 1 inch fry, and no one else got sick, so puzzled as to what happened but will presumably never know.I even looked for the fish with an underwater camera on a scope and never found a body?
 

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Wild guess, there is some out of sight feature that could trap that size fish, when it decomposed the remains were disturbed and let loose
 
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Wild guess, there is some out of sight feature that could trap that size fish, when it decomposed the remains were disturbed and let loose
I generally agree considering that there’s apparently been a decomposing body in there for 7 weeks and I never saw it that there are definitely spots not observable from above, but if there is one silver lining to having a pond that some here consider to be “an oversized aquarium” ;), it’s that there really shouldn’t be many secret spots in a 300 gallon stock pond when actually searching? A few of the bones were under a rock in an odd spot under the waterfall (it had fallen a few inches off of something else), but the rock itself was significantly smaller than the fish so even if it pinned him I have no idea how I would have missed seeing him? Odd eddies in the current could have carried a couple small bones there; there was no sign of the skull or any larger, telltale evidence. Also, the waterfall has been off a number of times since then, not sure how I could have missed it but yet I missed _something_. During the search time I honestly can’t remember if we turned off the pump/waterfall as I was focused on using the camera scope but it seems like it would have been the obvious first step to improving visibility, so who knows?

Also, my son, whose fish this was, reminded me that he wasn’t actually in perfect health, he’d been struggling with fin rot off and on in the aquarium after a freak spawning incident where he ended up getting an egg glued to his tail fin that remained glued there for a couple of months. So possibly the stress from that weakened him somehow and then going from the aquarium to the pond, even though the pond was much cleaner than the aquarium, still would have been a stressor, plus he immediately started chasing for days my one mature female to spawn as soon as they were all in there, so perhaps a fishy heart attack or something of the sort after a series of stressors?
 
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I am sorry your son's fish died. Has he picked a new one? I try hard not to pick favorites since it seems that is the one that gets sick or dies or simply disappears. (I think snakes or frogs make them disappear in my pond from time to time.....though maybe I too will find little skeletons)

I do not think it is possible an egg got glued to his tail fin and stayed several months. A fish egg is a fragile thing and would have rotted off by then. Maybe it was some kind of little tumor or lesion that could have lasted months and been fluid filled/egg appearing.

Sometimes fish just die.......
 
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I am sorry your son's fish died. Has he picked a new one? I try hard not to pick favorites since it seems that is the one that gets sick or dies or simply disappears. (I think snakes or frogs make them disappear in my pond from time to time.....though maybe I too will find little skeletons)

I do not think it is possible an egg got glued to his tail fin and stayed several months. A fish egg is a fragile thing and would have rotted off by then. Maybe it was some kind of little tumor or lesion that could have lasted months and been fluid filled/egg appearing.

Sometimes fish just die.......
Thank you for your condolences. I can understand your skepticism, it was truly a freak thing, but it was an egg, not a tumor, and to be clear, it was there for 1-2 months, not “several” months. This happened was while my goldfish were living in an aquarium before the pond, so it was very easy to see both the spawning behaviors that had been going on for a couple of days leading up to this, easy to see every aspect of the fish closely and it was definitely a goldfish egg, not a tumor; it was literally just suddenly there when an hour before it hadn’t been there, an amber, translucent sphere resting on top of a stark white tail, and then the top edge of the tail also got stuck to it. it was far from the main body of the fish and the rest of the tail was perfectly white and healthy looking at the time it instantly appeared. I was surprised as well how long it persisted, I kept looking to see if there was signs of a developing embryo but never saw one. I can only imagine that since the egg was not laying static in the tank where fungus could take hold but was constantly kept moving and being aerated due to its location on the tail it took longer than usual to rot. The fish was the dominant fish in the tank so no one was going to sneak up and nibble his tail in any case ;)
 

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