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Old 04-16-2008, 03:11 PM   #1
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A New Appreciation For The Hobby

About a year ago what a saw today wouldn't have phased me as much as it did today, but after delving into this wonderful new hobby I have come to appreciate how amazing fish really are and appreciate how much time, effort, and knowledge it takes to run a successful tank. I think it's a great thing and I have enjoyed learning so much from all of you.

I'm an SIUE student and today was the beginning of our Springfest. The students have a bunch of carnival type booths set up for the students to participate in for free. So, naturally they have the ring-toss game where if you can get the ring on the neck of the bottle you're rewarded with a nice fish to take home.

These fish, most of them being goldfish, were kept in small bags with only 2'' of water, and with food coloring additives to match the color of each fish. I understand that things like this occur all the time, but this is this first time it's really gotten to me.

I overheard one of the conversations of one of the girls that had just one a fish, and she was being told by one of the other girls that food coloring was actually bad for the fish, and her only response was, "Oh well, it's just a fish"

I guess all I'm saying is that I feel bad for those people who don't really appreciate how great fish are, and even worse for the fish that have to endure conditions such as these because of these unappreciative people.

I just got out of class and felt the sudden need to share this story with people that would understand where I'm coming from. : )
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Old 04-17-2008, 11:11 AM   #2
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I definitely understand where you're coming from Paty, and if you'd find a sympathetic ear anywhere, it would be here. I share your distaste for this treatment, and also find people's complete apathy appalling. "Just fish!" Ugh!

I was told of a fraternity that gets feeder fish in order to make the pledges think they have to eat them (a trust thing). They don't really make them eat them but I doubt they get returned or placed in a tank.

This begs the slippery slope question: surely nobody would do this with a dog, none of us (here on AA) would do it with a clown fish, or a cichlid, or a goldfish. Yet we do (I do at least) buy feeder fish for my Tex Cichlid as a treat every once in a while. Is this cruel? Some would say yes, myself included, I think it's pretty cruel for the feeder fish but do it anyway.

Some might argue it's more humane to give a fish a lightning quick ending on a frat house floor than to make it live in fear of a predator in an enclosed tank for days on end, only to eventually get eaten alive.

Mice and snakes are a great example, b/c mice have one up on fish in a lot of people's minds: They're mammals and they're furry.

Fur seems to have a lot to do with people's perceptions of animal cruelty doesn't it? Add fur and you add another level of sensitivity in most people's minds. Weird. What makes us feel the way we do about certain animals? Intelligence? Appearance? Demonstrative emotions?

I'm not going to lose sleep over killing some insects, but are they not entitled to humane treatment just as much as a puppy is?

My point is only that there is no one "right" answer. People's idiosyncracies towards how they feel towards animals vary widely.

I also think it's interesting how, if confronted between a choice to help a stray dog, or a stray human, the vast vast majority would help the dog. True, you can't take a bum home and make him all nice and cuddly, but interesting all the same.
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Old 04-17-2008, 11:25 AM   #3
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Its like Kurt Kobain said in a song lyric "its ok to eat fish cause they don't have any feelings" Do you believe that fish have feelings. When A fish is getting attacked from a predator does it get angry/sad or is it just like "Oh I think I am getting eaten"
I know dogs get depressed and sad and so do humans. I doubt the spider I step on has any feelings if it did I sure wouldn't care I hate spiders. Fish are food so its hard for people to care sometimes. We eat bacon daily but If I had a pet pig for my daugther she would become attached to it and cry if I killed and served it for dinner. Just like we become attached to our pet fish and care for them. I even somewhat am attached to my snails but yet escargo is a delicassy
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Old 04-17-2008, 11:26 AM   #4
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I kill mosquitoes indiscriminately, but will catch a spider and let it outside (they hopefully eat the mosquitoes)!!! I agree with you Paty. As for the feeder fish, it is part of natural selection (at least in the wild). In SW, we love pods, but some of our fish eat them to survive, so it happens weather we want it to or not.
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Old 04-17-2008, 05:19 PM   #5
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ANimals or other critters that seem to be on auto pilot are the ones people tend not to care about. I have seen lots of these kinds of threads. Most of the time people (who are not deeply into aquaria) think of fish as 1. food or 2. decoration one or the other an no inbetween.
All of the fish in my tanks would be food for larger fish in the amazon where most of them come from. So I get to enjoy them in my tank and I love watching them.

Many fish don't have quite so nice a fate but that is how it is the world over. Just feel good about doing the very best you can with the fish you have.
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Old 04-18-2008, 01:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
My point is only that there is no one "right" answer. People's idiosyncracies towards how they feel towards animals vary widely.
I agree, there are a lot of grey areas and you do make a great point. Opinions will vary widely, and like happygirl said, I guess I can only feel good about doing the very best that I can with my future fish. Which I will with help from all of you
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Old 04-19-2008, 01:37 AM   #7
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As i see it we should all become budist monks and live out the rest of our days striving not to harm any living thing be it insect, invertibrate, mammal, fish, bird or whatever.


Ooooorrrrrrrrrrrr we can all just accept the natural order of things to come but respect all of Gods creations and not be malicious in feeding live animals/fish.
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Mice and snakes are a great example, b/c mice have one up on fish in a lot of people's minds: They're mammals and they're furry.

Fur seems to have a lot to do with people's perceptions of animal cruelty doesn't it? Add fur and you add another level of sensitivity in most people's minds. Weird. What makes us feel the way we do about certain animals? Intelligence? Appearance? Demonstrative emotions?
I did have a furry fish once and it didnt change the way i felt about it. lol

A lot also depends on where and how we were raised. i grew up with chickens, turkeys, and rabbits and every so often one would be put in the stew pot for dinner. I have no problems feeding mice or rats to my snakes and if the snakes dont eat it on of the dogs gets a tasty treat after they are done playing with it. it's the way things are. something has to die in order for something else to live. I think it's all in the attitude or mind set of the individual that is doing the deed so to speak. If done with malice and intent to do it cruel harm it's wrong. Feeder fish are going to die whether at a carnival in another fish's mouth or even be for it leaves the store and becomes food for the other feeder fish. at least at the carnival they have a chance to go home with someone who might try to care for it.
I feel sorry for the bettas that are confined to a 1 cup fish bowl sittin on a shelf in a fish store. they should know better
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