Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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Poleren 08-01-2014 02:36 AM

Rant: The Goldfish Stereotype
Me and some friends were planning a fair thing at school for younger kids (a school project which is not as fun as it sounds) and we wanted to have Betta fish as prizes. Because they are really hardy, don't require big tanks and don't need an air pump/filter. The teacher denies us and here are her reasons:
Reason 1: The fish will die in the bags:
My response: Sure goldfish would but not bettas they can live in cups for months! (It's not ideal)
Reason 2: The fish die in the bags because of old age "you don't know how old the fish is when you buy it":
My response: I think all living things deserve the right to have some oxygen and let's not forget the oldest living goldfish is 45 years old. P.S. you can tell how old a goldfish is just by looking at its size.
Reason 3: The kindergarteners would freak out if they saw a dead fish in their bag.
My response: well yeah, one of the only good reasons but recap Reason 1.
Reason 4: Well it's just not a good idea and we want to be safe.
My response: you know nothing about this and you won't listen to reason!
Of course I didn't say any of this out loud, but it's quite interesting how the whole world thinks goldfish can live for 5 months in a bowl. I expect goldfish treatment to be common knowledge so people don't go off massacring dozens of goldfish in Betta seperator tanks (I had a friend who did that). Almost every person I know has killed a goldfish including me. And I guess my point is spread the word of goldfish!
- from your local fish geek
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SeaHorse 08-01-2014 11:43 AM

I noticed that your post has not yet caused a stir so I'll chime in here... (and we will NOT allow a heated debate on this subject!)

We at TFK & BF DO NOT advocate handing fish out as prizes (or sitting in wedding/party table displays) as most kids/people have NO clue as to what is needed to keep them and it causes much upset. Many of our members have lobbied with their local schools NOT to hand out such a prize at their fairs and I applaud your teacher's decision!!

Contrary to what you may think, Betta should NOT be kept in little cups. Those tiny cups you see at the store are for transport... arrival at the store and hopefully transport home to their new TANK. The owner needs to provide suitable care...more than a vase for a home and at least a minimum 1 gallon tank.
They do require at least a heater as they are tropical. They also do NOT live is puddles as the rumors would have us believe.
Goldfish do not require a heater but do require long term, a MUCH bigger tank. Just because Goldfish Bowls, Turtle pans (complete with palm tree) and Tiny 1/2 gallon single and double tanks are still sold at pet stores does not mean they are appropriate housing for any living creature.

Members are welcome to add comments here but should this thread run off the rails it will be closed and/or removed.

Olympia 08-01-2014 11:53 AM

I agree. .. no point advocating for one fish's care by throwing a different fish under the bus. I've spent several hundred on goldfish care, but even a proper betta set up will run $50-$100 which is more than a parent wants to spend on something their kid dragged home.
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Poleren 08-01-2014 12:44 PM

Yeah I should have thought that one over a bit more.

SeaHorse 08-02-2014 10:01 AM

Good job! Sorry to be stern. It is such a volatile subject... no correct answer and while I myself see the fish at the fair or on the table and my first reaction is OH a Betta!!!! Squeee!! Aren't they cute!!! Wha.? Wait?... oh dear... oh no... omg... spasm... I spend the rest of the day/night/event worried about who isn't gonna make it and stay late to make sure all the left overs go home with someone.
And I'm probably not the only one who looks at it this way.

Tolak 08-02-2014 10:31 AM

If you want to do this right think quality not quantity. Less fish, include a small setup with the fish, 5 gallon tank, heater filter & so on. Find a shop that wants to do a bit of promotion, they'll cut you a deal on multiple setups if you include cards & fliers for their shop in the setup. Of course toss in a flier for this site for additional info, you want to give anyone new to this as well as the fish every advantage possible.

You can do a proper betta setup for way under that $50 mark, with a well promoted event you can often get shops to donate if you promote them. My club does this all the time, it's just knowing who to approach and in what manner. Do not just hand out bagged fish willy nilly, while properly bagged fish will last quite some time their fate after that is so uncertain, and as with most events like this not good.

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