Thursday, December 10, 2009
Impatience, A Water Hose, and Dead Fish
I enjoy aquariums. I think they are relaxing to watch, and fairly inexpensive to maintain. They make great pets for people on the go. They don't need to be walked, they don't bark, they don't piddle on the floor, they don't require a lot of attention. When I was younger I had a salt water aquarium that I really enjoyed, but it was a lot of work (as salt water aquariums were then...not so much now from what I hear.) I currently have two aquariums. One is 37 gallons and the other is 14 gallons. They are both fresh water aquariums. In the larger one I have semi-aggressive fish. I now have one Opaline Gourami, two African Cichlids, and one African Brown Knife. In the smaller tank I have two tiny fish; a male and female Fire Belly Mickey Mouse Platys. I used to have more fish. I took good care of them. But I had an accident one day. I took a personality test once that claimed I was a perfectionist to which I scoffed. But my mom suggested it true because I'd rather do a job well then do it at all. That is true with my aquariums. I wait till they are nearly caked with algae before I clean them, but that's because I intend to clean them well when I do. I take out the castle, plants, sea shells, etc. to each be cleaned individually. I scrub the sides to make sure no algae is left on the glass. I stir the rocks to get all the algae and food particles and waste from the bottom. Then I suction all the dirty water out with my aquarium pump. It can sometimes take me three hours to clean the aquariums. Well, one day this past summer I had gotten impatient. I had finally finished the cleaning, but still needed to add fresh water. Instead of adding each gallon of water with the water purifier added to it, I decided to take a shortcut. I went outside and pulled the water hose into the house and began filling the aquariums with the hose and adding drops of purifer to the water pouring from the spout! What a horrible tragedy I had unveiled by doing so! It was just awful! I had a gazillion of the platys because they are live bearers and were having babies by the scores. Now I'm just down to two. In my larger tank I lost just one Gourami, but I had it for nearly two years. Those four fish almost get lost in my larger tank. I've considered getting more fish for that aquarium, but those cichlids are very teritorial, and may kill anything else I put in there. I will wait to see what happens with the platys. That female has a big ol' belly, and may be squirting out babies any day. I'd like to get back into salt water aquariums, though. I hear they are much easier to maintain than they used to be. But salt water fish can be expensive. Poor little fishes.