Originally Posted by Andy Sager
What the Mrs. doesn't understand yet is that fish keeping can be and is extremely educational. You have to learn biology, chemistry and environmental sciences in order to keep a tank well maintained ( and math if you mix too many male and female fish together ;D.) In fact, if the tank is kept properly, you shouldn't have to spend much time on it. My 6 tanks and 2 betta bowls don't take me more than an hour each week to maintain. My favorite saying is " The less you mess, the greater the success!" That means do it right the first time and you will have better success and less cost.
There is another positive to fish keeping at an earlier age. In my case, I started when I was 7 years old. That love of fish blossomed into a 40 year career in the fish business. That entailed travels abroad, (which expanded my understanding of other cultures) understanding genetics,( I became a fish breeder for most of my career), and becoming an environmentalist ( By understanding where the fish came from and visiting those areas, I was better able to recreate those habitats in my tanks as well as encourage others to be more environmentally friendly in their lives, which we all know is the key to our own survival as a specie) as well as a financial reward.
When I got married, my fish were just part of the package ( along with my Monkeys
) My wife didn't know a thing about them, didn't want anything to do with the care and upkeep of them, but sure liked the results I got from them. And of course, when I gave her books to pick out fish she would like me to have in the house, her tastes were well over our financial means ( and the pictures didn't come with price tags, she just liked the rare and distant stuff. lol) Although we are now divorced, in a recent conversation with her, she admitted that she missed having a tank in the house. Fish do rub off on people
Hope this helps
I agree with the education side of it. Having our guppies give birth helped is explain to our daughter that she was going to have a baby sister. It also help teach responsibility to kids.
Right now I have my maintenance at 20-30 minutes for a 10 gal
. and a 1 gal
. I use 4 2.5 gal
. buckets (which is the biggest peev of hers), 2 for new water and 2 for the old water. Thinking about getting 2 5 gal
. buckets to cut down on the running back and forth. I'm sure that will help with time and the clutter she dispises come maintenance day.
Money hasn't ever been a problem for us. I use my tip money from work, that way I'm using money we were never really counting on using. I also try to do everything as cheap as I can.
I find it really hard not to get more tanks. When I'm offered one for free or its a really good deal I grab it. Lol might be getting another tank this week for free from a co-worker. I don't plan on setting it up unless its bigger then what we have. Or might just set it up in the garage