Goldfish
have

strong


associative


learning

abilities,


as

well


as

social

learning

skills.


In


addition,


their


visual
acuity
allows


them

to


distinguish


between


individual


humans.


Owners


may


notice

that


fish

react


favorably

to
them
(swimming


to


the


front


of


the


glass,


swimming


rapidly


around

the


tank,


and

going


to


the


surface
mouthing
for


food)


while


hiding

when


other


people


approach

the


tank.


Over


time,


goldfish


learn


to


associate
their

owners


and

other


humans

with


food,


often


"begging"


for


food


whenever


their


owners


approach.
Responses

from

a

blind

goldfish


proved

that


it

recognized


one

particular

family

member


and

a

friend


by

voice,
or

vibration


of


sound.


This


behavior


was


remarkable


because


it

showed


that


the


fish

recognized


the


vocal
vibration

or


sound


of


two

people


specifically


out


of


seven

in


the


house.
Goldfish
are


gregarious,


displaying


schooling


behavior,


as

well


as

displaying


the


same


types


of


feeding
behaviors.

Goldfish

may


display

similar


behaviors


when


responding


to


their


reflections

in


a

mirror.
Goldfish
that


have

constant


visual

contact


with


humans

also


stop


considering

them

to


be

a

threat.


After

being
kept

in


a

tank


for


several


weeks,


sometimes


months,

it

becomes

possible

to


feed


a

goldfish


by

hand


without


it
shying

away.
Goldfish
have

learned


behaviors,


both


as

groups

and

as

individuals,


that


stem

from

native

carp


behavior.


They
are

a

generalist


species


with


varied


feeding,

breeding,


and

predator


avoidance

behaviors


that


contribute


to
their

success.


As

fish

they


can

be

described


as

"friendly"

towards


each

other.

Very

rarely


does

a

goldfish


harm
another

goldfish,


nor


do

the


males

harm

the


females


during


breeding.


The


only


real


threat

that


goldfish
present

to


each

other


is


competing

for


food.


Common

goldfish,


Comets,


and

other


faster


varieties


can

easily
eat

all


the


food


during


a

feeding


before


fancy


varieties


can

reach


it.


This


can

lead


to


stunted


growth


or
possible
starvation


of


fancier


varieties


when


they


are


kept


in


a

pond


with


their


single-

tailed


brethren.


As

a
result,

care


should


be

taken


to


combine


only


breeds

with


similar


body

type


and

swim

characteristics.
Intelligence
Goldfish
have

a

memory-

span

of


at


least


three


months


and

can

distinguish


between


different


shapes,


colors
and
sounds.
Research

by

the


School

of


Psychology

at


the


University


of


Plymouth

in


2003.


Goldfish

were

trained

to


push

a
lever

to


earn


a

food


reward;


when


the


lever


was


fixed

to


work

only


for


an

hour


a

day,


the


fish

soon

learned


to
activate

it

at


the


correct

time.
The

Discovery


Channel's


show


Mythbusters


tested


the


contemporary

legend


that


goldfish


only


had

a

memory
span
of


3

seconds


and

were

able


to


prove


that


goldfish


had

a

longer


memory

span

than


commonly

believed.
The

experiment


involved

training


the


fish

to


navigate


a

maze.


It

was


evident


that


they


were

able


to


remember
the

correct

path


of


the


maze


after


more


than


a

month.

By

using


reinforcement,


punishment,


and

positive
reinforcement,

goldfish


can

be

trained

to


recognize


and

to


react


to


light


signals

of


different


colors

or


to


perform
tricks,

such

as

the


limbo,


slalom,


fetch,


and

soccer.


Fish


respond

to


certain


colors

most


evidently


in


relation


to
feeding.
Fish


learn


to


anticipate


feedings


provided


they


occur


at


around

the


same


time


everyday.
Reproduction