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Old 12-09-2003, 11:38 AM   #1
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Netting for Dummies?

I came home from work yesterday and was doing a head count on all my new little fishies when I noticed something disturbing...

One of my Yellow Labs had a splinter in his upper "lip".
He must have been trying to chew on the driftwood in the tank.

It was right around feeding time so I went ahead and fed them like normal. I wanted to see if a) he had trouble eating or b) eating would loosen the splinter from his mouth.

Of course, he was having problems. I decided that I would give it a little time and so let him be for an hour. I had decided that when I came back I would net him and see if I could get it out with a pair of tweezers (it was sticking out fairly far and I could do it fairly quickly).

I learned that having a bunch of terrain in the tank, using a 5" net, and trying to move the net from one side of a 55 gallon tank to the other, across the divider, all while trying to catch a 1.5" cichlid isn't very easy at all.

I then tried to lure him with food. While I didn't catch him this way, he did seem to get a little more food in his mouth.

After giving up on the whole netting/tweezing idea, I happened to look down and see him trying to chew on some coral. When he spat it out, the splinter was gone. His name changed from "stupid fish" to "smart fish" at that point.

I think he got lucky, but I was wondering if I really needed to get him (or any others) out of the tank, is there any easy way? Do I need a bigger net? Do I have to pull off the hood, lights, plants, rocks just to have a chance? Should I use two nets, one to flush them out into the second one?

Also, is there anything I can do about him (he seems the only one) trying to use the wood as a food source? (I know he's not actually trying to eat the wood, rather looking for algea on it). The next splinter may not be so easy to be rid of...
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Old 12-09-2003, 02:34 PM   #2
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Hi there. I don't know if this works well with yellow labs, or in a tank your size... but I know a few of us on here do this.

I throw an old betta hex (or use a glass/vase/jug/whatever) in the tank in a strategic position (just behind a big plant or in the corner) and chase the fish with the net and they swim right into it!

Of course, having a smaller tank and knowing how my platies and guppies respond to the net helps out.
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Old 12-09-2003, 02:43 PM   #3
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I turn off the lights and use a flash light to hunt them down then i nab them with the net.
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Old 12-12-2003, 08:57 AM   #4
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My fish don't like the net that much. I had two in a 10 gal while I was setting up the 55 gal. When I transferred them over, I had to take all of the terrain and the heater out of the 10 gal to catch them both and it still took about 20 minutes to catch them.

Partially it's because I'm somewhat new to netting them and I don't want to be too rough with them. And the fact that the little bastages kept hiding behind the uplift tubes in the ugf. I thought I was going to kill them with stress...

I'll probably try both methods and see what works.

Thanks...
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Old 12-12-2003, 09:12 AM   #5
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The 2 net method with a really big net works well generally.

Maybe also try putting some food in the net and just lowering it down in the tank for a while without moving it. That might get them at ease.

Glad the splinter came out.
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Old 12-12-2003, 09:59 AM   #6
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I just hold the net in the tank without moving it around or chasing any fish, and pretty soon they either ignore the net or get curious. Then I use my hand from behind to chase the fish into the net. There is also a cool way to "trap" fish using a 2 liter bottle with the top cut off and reinserted inside the bottle, so that they swim into the bottle via the small neck (to get delicious food inside as bait) and then can't swim back out the small opening. Basically like a crab trap, if you know what that looks like.

Once I read a thread about catching tiger barbs (wicked fast!) at night in the dark using night-vision goggles! It works, if you want to spend that kinda dough...
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Old 12-12-2003, 07:26 PM   #7
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I just stick my net in the water and let them get used to it for about a minute, then I move it around REALLY slowly, I eventually work the net around them and simply tug up, and I have them.

it minimilizes the stress to the fish IMHO, since their not shocked or scared until the moment hte net jerks upward.
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