Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Jarrett777 08-27-2013 09:13 AM

Don't know what to do with my fish!
Hey everyone, so I'm new to this forum and haven't really been on any fish keeping forums in a couple years so forgive me if I'm not posting in the right place. So here's my problem: I no longer live at my mothers house but I still have a 125 gallon aquarium in her basement. In it is a self sustaining ecosystem based on permaculture design. Originally it was set up for my turtle. The plants consumed the nutrients from the waste of the turtle and fish, which also fed algae and bacteria which were in turn fed upon by snails, and the turtle in turn ate the plants and snails which managed to just keep up in growth with the amount of food she ate every day. There were originally about 10 different species of plants, now there's only a few left. I also started the tank with 5 cherry barbs which started to breed pretty much immediately so i then got a dwarf pike cichlid to keep their population under control. it all balanced out and went on without any input from myself. Anyway when the turtle died I got a few silver dollars to keep the plant growth down. I also got a pair of swordtails just for fun. I'm not sure if they ever bred, but eventually the female jumped out so now only the male is left. Anyway here comes the problem: my mother is now selling the house. She wants the fish out by today and I just don't know what to do. She told me two days ago that I had to do this, and what with working full time I'm really stressing out. The whole point of this system was to ensure that the fish were in as natural a system as possible to foster optimum health and well being. I genuinely care a lot about the life of each individual fish in the tank, and I hate to think of giving then to a fish store where they'll assuredly either die or end up in a tiny 20 gallon veins fed flakes for the rest of their life. I don't know, it sounds silly but these fish mean a lot to me. If I was in any position to keep them I would, but I'm just not. Does anyone have any suggestions? I know I'm grasping at straws I'm just really desperate. Anyway I greatfully await any and all replies. Thanks!

jaysee 08-31-2013 03:28 PM

I would say to drop them all off at a fish store if you can't have the tank where you live. It sucks that circumstances can change so quickly like that, but when it does you just have to do what you have to do. My parents just put their house of for sale. I took back everything I was storing there because I did not want to hinder their ability to sell the house. Granted a fish tank in the basement is not that big a deal IMO, but it may be to someone else and that's what's matters.

On a side note, I'm not exactly sure what you mean by a self sustaining system. while I understand what you were trying to accomplish with your tank, having read your post it doesn't sound like it was working too well. Of course I don't know anything other than what you've shared, but in your post you mention the plants dying off, the turtle dying and the other fish committing suicide. However, the term "working" is relative.

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