The Celestial Goldfish gets its name from the position of its eyes, which look up towards the sky. The Celestial Goldfish is regularly confused with the Bubble Eye Goldfish, as both have eyes that point upwards. The Celestial Goldfish has bulging eyes where as the Bubble Eye Goldfish has air sacs under each eye.
The Celestial Goldfish originates from Korea and usually grows to around 6” long. They have paired caudal fins and anal fins, no dorsal fins, and can be seen in orange, white, or a combination of both colors.
When the Celestial Goldfish is hatched, their eyes are in the normal, side-on position. However, when they reach around two months of age, the eyes begin to move both upwards and outwards, ultimately leading to the eyes looking straight up. Due to the position of the eyes looking straight up, they should be housed in an aquarium that does not have a bright light since they will always be looking at it.
The entire process of the eyes moving up can take up to six months to complete, and when finished, both eyes should be the same size and lie at the same angle.
While the upturned eyes is a dominant trait within the species, in some cases, the eye development does not fully complete, or one eye is significantly larger or more upturned than the other.
Celestial Goldfish temperament and care
The telescope eyes of Celestial Goldfish can cause vision problems and make the fish struggle to find their way around the tank. They will swim in a pointed down position so they can see ahead of them and this position causes them to be slow swimmers. It is important that the tank does not have a lot of obstacles, such as exposed filtration equipment or ornaments, as these may pose a risk to the fish’s delicate eyes.
Due to their poor vision, slow swimming speed and need to take their time finding food, the Celestial Goldfish is not a good choice for mixed-species tanks, and should not be mixed with faster-swimming types of goldfish. They should only be housed with other Celestial Goldfish or goldfish similar to them, such as the Bubble Eye Goldfish, Pompons Goldfish, or Telescope Goldfish.
Breeding Celestial Goldfish
The upturned eyes of the Celestial Goldfish make it challenging for males to locate the females. It can therefore help to place several males in the tank for each female. It is also wise to keep the breeding tank fairly bare and limit the availability of hiding places for the female.
During the breeding season, the sexes can easily be identified, as the male’s gill plates and pectoral fins will develop white tubercles.
Choosing Celestial Goldfish
Look for fish that have equal sized telescope eyes, and do not buy juvenile fish whose eyes seem to be developing at different rates.
The Celestial Goldfish is not intended to have a dorsal fin, so view the fish side-on and carefully select fish that do not display this trait.