A few weeks ago, I put up a somewhat humorous post about my wife recently killing off a couple of gold-fish. In that post, I shared that we were trying to introduce our youngest children to pets by letting them have some fish. Little did we know at the time, that this would turn out to be an experiment that would prove to be most daunting. We have lost so many fish in the following days that I have simply lost count.
We have had the water tested. We have tried heartier fish. We are monitoring water temperatures, and chemical composition of the water like we were world-renowned scientists. We have changed enough water to fill an olympic-style swimming pool (amazing feat for a little 5 gallon tank huh). We have added special salt. We have scoured the web for clues to our mysterious “tank of death” that I have come to call it.
Currently the only things we have managed to keep alive until recently have been some little ghost shrimp (very cool creatures actually). Early this week we introduced a group of tiger barb fish to the tank. This was something like the third group of fish to be introduced (remember I lost count). Anyway, these fish were seeming to fit in just fine. That is, until the next morning when we discovered two of them had died. Curiously, one of these fish managed to survive the curse that seems to be on the tank. It was the smallest, and weakest swimming of the three. We decided to use this one as a control, to see if it would continue to live for another 24 hours (see, scientific method in force…we have the white lab coats on order).
The little runt of a fish survived this period, so we introduced two more of the striped fish to the tank. Everything seemed fine, and then, like so many other fish before they went belly up. So now this little survivor has generated a new wrinkle to the mystery. How come this little guy has survived, and all other bigger and supposedly stronger fish have not? I must say that I am at a total loss for what is going on here.
I will be the first to tell you that I am not a fish guy. However, I have never in my life seen so many fish die so quickly, one after the other, in my life. I am a science-minded guy, but maybe, just maybe this could be an omen. After all this is the year that has seen birds fall from the sky, and fish die in the wild for seemingly no reason. Maybe this “affliction” has spread all the way to our little tank here in Nebraska.
That, or we are just not “fish people”.
- What is a Tiger Barb? (brighthub.com)
- Zen and the art of fish tank maintenance: ‘Aquascapers’ herald the end for treasures chests and shipwrecks with arty installations (dailymail.co.uk)
- Russia’s fish struggle as winter drags on (seattletimes.nwsource.com)