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Posted: 2/27/2006 2:10:28 PM EDT
This is wild, so I find a 6 sided aquarium in the "want to sell" adds on the cheap. I go look @ it and buy it. I set it up. Fresh water. It works fine, and such. Now I go get some fish, fresh filter, and it has a above the tank filter with a waterwheel/cleaner. I was given one siamise fighter for nothing, and he/she seems to fit in but displays more aggressive behavior toward the one largest/smartest fish. Now I say smartest because these fish exhibit interpersonal traits believe it or not, I never thought fish were anything other than 'my food'. I guess the Alfa/Beta/depressedloser food chain thing aplies to fish also. Not just the strong survive, but the cunning and speedy. The pet-co girl told me to put a pinch of "saltwater-salt" in the fresh water? Any of you ever have a aquarium? any tips for a aquarium newbie ....except they'll be good eating when TSHTF?
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:13:00 PM EDT
My cat's breath smells like cat food.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:14:59 PM EDT
I figure that any animal that is in my custodial care could be considered a pet.

I had DISCUS fish for a number of years. If any fish could be considered "intelligent", cichlids are near the top of the brain trust.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:15:17 PM EDT
If it's in your house, and it's not human, and it will die if you don't feed it, and you know it's there, it's a pet.

Mothers-in-law are, regrettably, considered human.

So are some children.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:16:46 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:19:06 PM EDT
I have a 50 gal tank with 2 oscars in it, a pleco (sucker fish) a red fin shark and a african cichlid.

Beta (fighting) fish don't make the best community fish. They tend to pick on other fish around them, and their fins are easy targets for other more agressive fish.

What size (gal) tank is it? If you have the space, cichlids make the best "pet" fish. They are by far the smartest and most entertaining fish species.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:24:27 PM EDT
First of all, PetCo employees rarely know much about keeping fish.

Secondly, good filtration is a must. There are lots of different ways of going about this, but the easiest and most affordable way is to use a hang on back filter, like the one you apparently have. Tanks require time to cycle, so frequent partial waterchanges are a must for the first few weeks. Change 25% of the water daily for the first week, and then every other day for a week, then every third day, etc, until you are changing 1/4 of the water every week. After that your filtration bacteria should be well established and your filter media will be doing it's thing. For fish only tanks, bright lighting is not necessary, and neither is a 12 hour photoperiod. Keep the thing out of the sun.

Don't be tempted to buy a new filter insert every month. Used filter pads are home to most of your beneficial bacteria. Keep yours in there, and if it needs replaced, retain a good portion of your old one to "seed" your new filter. Backwashing in aquarium temp water is the best way to keep an old pad working.

Make sure you change 10-20% of the water at least every other week, and don't put too many fish in there. Don't put incompatible fish together, and avoid delicate or needy fish. DON'T buy a fish that gets to be 24" long, but looks really cute in the store, such as Tinfoil Barbs, Ocsars, Pacu, Knife fish, etc...

A simple Siamese Fighting fish setup should be very easy to maintain.

How big is the tank? What are all the occupants?
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:24:33 PM EDT
Most awesome fish I ever had was a large mouth bass.

I was catching tiny minnows and put them in a tank.
Turns out they were actually baby bass.

I started out feeding them daphnia I filtered out of backwaters.
Then baby minnows.

I narrowed them down to one that didn't freak out every time I walked past.

I ended up with him in a 55 gallon tank. He only got to be 8" long before I learned
the hard way that you can't feed goldfish to native species.

He got all kinds of parasites, and the treatments killed him.

But when he was alive, he would pratically jump out of the water to grab feeders
out of my hand.

Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:25:52 PM EDT
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:33:57 PM EDT
+1 for cichlids. In college i had a 125 gal setup for S.A. cichlids. Very personalble fish. Once you get tankmates that play nicely they are a hoot to watch. I will set my tank back up next time we build a house. I would also like to try mu hand a Discus.

+1 on the filtration too. This can make or break a tank. I ran a wet dry sump on my tank. Stay away from live food. While it is fun to watch your jack dempsy murder guppies you will pay for it in the end with parasites/infections.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:43:31 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/27/2006 2:57:11 PM EDT by mags]
Thanks for the advice on changing the water and verifying the salt question TBS. The pet-co girl said to let it develop a slime[a water treatment] Its 10 gallons. I've been vigilant changing about 20% of the water the first few days. I'm going to have to look up the cichlids...Thanks on that! I really do not know what the other ones are (3) I just picked them out by the nieces saying "pretty" I also think they are becoming more acustomed to the "new digs", Thanks for the intel though! ETA: the bigest one ate a dead starfish I put in there for decoration, needless to say that one was the walmart fish!
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 3:43:39 PM EDT
I had a fish tank once... then my neice put yarn in the tank....

goodbye filter
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 4:11:51 PM EDT
I had a fish tank once.

Yes you do have to feed the critters but I never considered them pets.

I considered that fish tank more of an artwork statement than a pet holder.....

They go belly-up you flush 'em and get another - no sorrow no grief so they can't be a pet.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 4:46:26 PM EDT
Oscars are absolutely individual persons. I had a 1,200 gal set up and the couples do not swing.
Very platonic.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 4:50:27 PM EDT

Originally Posted By vito113:
Fish = Food



Havent you seen Finding Nemo??




"Fish are our friends, NOT FOOD!"
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:04:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By The_Reaper:
Most awesome fish I ever had was a large mouth bass.

I was catching tiny minnows and put them in a tank.
Turns out they were actually baby bass.

I started out feeding them daphnia I filtered out of backwaters.
Then baby minnows.

I narrowed them down to one that didn't freak out every time I walked past.

I ended up with him in a 55 gallon tank. He only got to be 8" long before I learned
the hard way that you can't feed goldfish to native species.

He got all kinds of parasites, and the treatments killed him.

But when he was alive, he would pratically jump out of the water to grab feeders
out of my hand.




Bass are awesome! I raised one once from minnow size. I tried to feen him flake food when it was only 2 inches long. But after 2 weekes of not eating I had to get some live food. He tore it up! I went from baby guppies to feeder goldfish. The goldfish were about 1 to 1 1/2" long. I never had a problem with the goldfish. I had a 135 gal tank and the bass got up to 12" long.

I know have a 235 gal full of cichlids. I think these are some of the easiest fish to keep.

And to answer you question, if you have to feed it, it must be a pet.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:17:12 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/27/2006 5:22:21 PM EDT by MrHeeHee]
Aquariums are high maintenence decorations.

Unless you have one big fish that you are kinda afraid of and eats anything you throw in, then it's a pet.

Get a Pacu - legal Piranah
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:18:05 PM EDT
If I cant pet it, its not a pet.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:40:00 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/27/2006 5:41:12 PM EDT by DrFrige]

Originally Posted By BuckeyeRifleman:
If I cant pet it, its not a pet.



Eh tell that to my 6 year old, The other night her pet goldfish "Bo" of three years died. she was in tears all night.

that alone classifies them as pets.

ETA: BUT now she wants to replace the memory of "Bo" with a pet lizard.. Oh crap here we go again.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:48:34 PM EDT

Originally Posted By BuckeyeRifleman:
If I cant pet it, its not a pet.


Ive been able to pet ever Oscar ive owned and they eat right outta your hand. Some of the oscars ive owned have made better pets than my previous dog selections
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:49:57 PM EDT
of course. My sister had a fish in college. She also has fish now.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 5:52:37 PM EDT
Yes, the fish keep some of us entertained


Link Posted: 2/27/2006 6:02:51 PM EDT

My daughter has a betta. The dang thing will jump 1/2 inch or so out of the water and eat a dried blood worm from your hand. He will also follow you as you walk around his little tank, never taking his cold-blooded eyes off you. Pretty dang interactive for a fish. I have known a lot of people less interesting!

I feed it= pet

Link Posted: 2/27/2006 6:08:29 PM EDT
Fish are bordering on decorations.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 6:09:52 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bgcc11:
Oscars are absolutely individual persons. I had a 1,200 gal set up and the couples do not swing.
Very platonic.



I raised one from the size of a nickel to the size of a dinner plate. He would break the surface of the water and take food from your fingers. I also had to do underwater surgery at 4 am when he thought it would be a good idea to eat a catfish.
Link Posted: 2/28/2006 1:02:52 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/28/2006 1:03:41 AM EDT by Big_Louie]
I like African Cichlids. Its like having a little slice of Africa right in your living room. They crap all over their tank, tear up gravel and vegetation, fight each other over food, territory, or nothing at all...
Link Posted: 2/28/2006 1:12:49 AM EDT
Here is my little pet fish.


He likes raw meat.


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