Cautions on "large" fish - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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post #1 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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Cautions on "large" fish

From time to time we have threads discussing very large fish that fish stores irresponsibly sell without warning of their eventual size and problems. This informative article points out some of the pitfalls awaiting those who buy such fish.
Where do all those big fish keep going? | Blog | Practical Fishkeeping

It also contains these wise words to us all, whatever the fish species we have:
If you buy a giant, then you’re accountable for it. In fairness, the same applies to any fish. It was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. And what’s more, you’re accountable for what directly happens to it when it does eventually leave your care.
Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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1077 (03-13-2012), SeaHorse (03-09-2012), thekoimaiden (03-09-2012)
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post #2 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 11:14 AM
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If you buy a giant, then you’re accountable for it. In fairness, the same applies to any fish. It was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. And what’s more, you’re accountable for what directly happens to it when it does eventually leave your care.

^^^^^
THIS
I believe that goes for any animal we take in. The second we decided to own or possess it, It is our responsibility to care for it for the duration of it's life. Now, if only we could get fish stores to start telling people honestly how large the fish is going to get and what to expect from it. I know it is a case of "buyer beware" but so many well meaning people will even ask "Is this fish right for my 30 gallon tank?" only to be told "why yes mam, it only gets as big as the tank will allow" Grrrr!

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated” Mahatma Gandhi
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post #3 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 11:18 AM
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I have a problem in my town,which is pretty much a college town, where students return their fish every summer. I just don't understand it. I have only returned a few fish and that was before I found this site. They are living creatures o.O just like every other pet they deserve the best you can give them.

40 gallon with 13 hermit crabs- 11 PPs, 1 E, 1 Straw
25 Gallon
~2 Dwarf Puffer- Sidney and Cairo, 4 Amano Shrimp, 4 Blue Pearl Shrimp, 4 Yellow Cherry Shrimp, 2 Mandarin Cherry Shrimp, Too many RCS, 4 Crystal Red Shrimp, 4- Otos

5 gallon
~White/Teal/Red Betta- Phantom, Snails

25 Gallon
~Leopard Gecko- Desert Rose
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post #4 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 11:40 AM
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Hate to say it but yes I have seen this very issue so very well .
I live in Colorado a lot of inexperienced aquarium keepers are out there . I do a lot of fishing in our big lakes , you would be surprised how many times I hooked Paco's , Oscars , Red tail cats , Jack demsies ect

It is just such a horrible thought seeing all these fish turn up this way, and its not just fish , gators have turned up in our lakes but the people who let them go don't realize our climate is to harsh and you wind up finding there dead carcases on the lake shores ,
This is not just here its all over the country ,
All these poor fish are not used to any of the extreme climate changes we have here in the states , most come from south America and all the places that are warm

I know many fish and wild life officers and these stories come up way to often .

Thank you BYRON for bringing this topic up it so needed to be heard

John
Colorado

37 gal bow front (saltwater)
octopus 150 skimmer
external penguin bio wheel 150 packed with cheato
ETH 200 watt inline heater
3 power heads 500gph
in line UV sterilizer

30 gal (brackish)
bio filter
under-gravel 2 power-heads 250gph

30 gal hex (freshwater)
bio filter
under gravel 2 power heads 170gph

Who ever said keeping fish was easy should have there head examined
It's more like a full time job !!!!
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post #5 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 01:14 PM
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Kudos to you Byron for posting this. I work with somebody who has a giant Arowana in a 210 gallon tank but he doesn't condition the water when changing and he feeds it nothing but large frozen shrimp every other week or so.

It makes me so sad for that fish :(

And this made me laugh out loud:

Misconception 5: It’s not my fault, nobody told me it got so big.
Use this line in my presence and I’ll slap you. A nice, open-handed wallop that makes your eyes water.

Animal testing is a terrible idea; they get all nervous and give the wrong answers.
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post #6 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 01:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEAWEED54 View Post
Hate to say it but yes I have seen this very issue so very well .
I live in Colorado a lot of inexperienced aquarium keepers are out there . I do a lot of fishing in our big lakes , you would be surprised how many times I hooked Paco's , Oscars , Red tail cats , Jack demsies ect


John
Colorado
How awful! I guess I'm really not surprised though :(

Welcome to TFK John.

Animal testing is a terrible idea; they get all nervous and give the wrong answers.
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post #7 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 02:44 PM
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I still remember the first time I saw almost fully-grown tank busters. I was at a LFS south of my house. It had 3 pacu, a redtailed cat, a pleco, and I want to say something else in a 500 gal tank. All of it was for sale. I'm only guessing they were returns because I'd seen other stores in the area selling those same fish. They displayed the fish and tank as a warning to all about just how big those things get. I wish this article could be displayed in pet stores around the world.

---Izzy

Sitting by the koi pond

writings on fish and fishkeeping


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post #8 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 04:25 PM
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The animal rights activist in me always wants to print off some warning labels on stickers and "graffiti" the tanks at chain stores. Like "Do have a 500g tank? Because I get 4 feet long!" and "I will voraciously eat every fish in your aquarium!" etc.

At work we have stickers we use on patients' ICU sheets and cage cards like "seizure watch" and "use caution". But we have one that is bright orange and says "AGGRESSIVE" and I always want to get a roll of that one and go labeling the tanks at Petsmart, Petco, Jack's, etc. lol

"My dither fish need dither fish!"
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post #9 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 05:50 PM
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I was at Cahoot's Pet Store yesterday to get a catfish and the lady really tried to sell me a 3" Red tailed catfish they had. I only have a 100 gallon tank but I felt so bad for him because they only have 10 gallon tanks with their fish in them there. What happens to those fish when they aren't bought and start getting huge? So its sad either way. The stores, especially chain or smaller stores should not carry them at all.
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post #10 of 14 Old 03-09-2012, 06:37 PM Thread Starter
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True. And there is a movement afoot in the UK to bring this about. At the bottom of the linked article, click the sentence "Will you support the big fish campaign?" to learn more.

It is only reasonable (at least to me) that responsible stores would never stock such fish "off the shelf." If they have customers with the necessary tanks to house them, they can always be special ordered. But then, too often common sense doesn't govern making money.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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