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Old 01-17-2006, 04:21 PM   #1
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In a tight spot- neglected fish

There is a five gallon fish tank in the lounge in Lakeland's science building, its been there since September. I see it everyday on the way to class. In this tank are a juvinile yellow lab, a convict cichlid, and a juvinile bolivian ram. I never see signs of the tank being maintained or the fish being fed, but they must at least be fed. The water is yellow and smells of ammonia. There must be high nitrites because brown algae is starting to form on the plants and airhose. The fish still look ok, they are naturally more reclusive I think since they are juvy cichlids. The convict is bold and doesn't hide when you put your hand by the glass. The tank top, where the air tube goes in, is covered in mineral deposits. I've had tanks on campus, using campus water, for three years and never saw signs of mineral deposits on any part of my tanks. I'm also concerned of a fire hazard as the pump is on the floor and its obvious that water comes up the tube, and the air pump is sitting next to the outlet, so if water comes down....
Anyway, I'm to a point where I'm thinking of liberating the fish and taking them. We have problems with equipment theft, but I work security so I know where the cameras are. I can't talk to the professor that owns the tank because I don't know any of the professors in science and when they are in their offices they have students meeting with them. So I'm thinking of leaving a note. I need opinions. Something like "To whom it may concern... the water parameters of this tank, nitrites ammonia and such, are at unhealthy levels for the fish occupants. I advise doing partial water changes to reduce harmful chemicals. It would be a shame to watch such fish die of asphyxiation or severe chemical burns. I am also concerned about the air pump being a fire hazard, it should be moved to a flat surface above the water level."
I can't think af anything else right now. And no I can't leave this alone. Even though they are just fish I can't watch them slowly die and do nothing. I'd feel responsible because I didn't at least try to educate the caretaker about keeping the fish alive.
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Old 01-17-2006, 04:38 PM   #2
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lol if u know where all the cameras are put on a mask and steal the tank lol. it only a 5 gallon its not that heavy. but seriously just go and do a water change your self if u are truly concerned. get a bucket and a water siphon and do a 50% water change. maybe even scrape some of the algea off the glass. no one will complain that you are cleanig the tank. whats the worst that could hapen? "hey you!! stop cleaning that tank!!! or i will call security!!!" lol oh wait, u are security
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Old 01-17-2006, 04:48 PM   #3
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If I were you, and I had space for the fish, I would get a bucket, leave a note to the owner regarding their poor caretaking skills and what they need to do to properly care for fish, and put those poor fishies in my bucket. If you want to go about things in a more moral way, more power to you, but I don't care too much about upsetting a**holes
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Old 01-17-2006, 05:01 PM   #4
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I suggest showing up with a 5 gallon bucket, water, water treatment chemicals and all the good stuff to make this tank healthy. You might want to have 2 buckets. I would do at 50% water change every few days for the next few.

And write the owner of this tank a VERY nasty letter.
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Old 01-17-2006, 05:08 PM   #5
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i like the way u think chris lol just take the fish and then see how long ti takes them to notice lol. if it is more than 1 day they do not deserve to have the fish and u get a few nice new fish. its a win win becasue now the fish are healthy and happy and u score some free fish.
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Old 01-17-2006, 05:26 PM   #6
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can you call the animal protection people on poor fish keeping? As sad as this sounds, i spend a good 2-3 hours sometimes at walmart in the fish supply section and i frequently see the tanks almost 3/4 the way drained for some reason and still stocked with about 20 fish, i feel bad for them, I often wondered if i would get kicked out or have the cops called if i just started filling the tanks and treating them, I talked to a girl who works pets and jewelry and she told me that walmart gives you a piece of paper that has a few instruction on how to fill the tanks and thats it, nothing about feeding, care, illness, water treatments, filter care, just not to let water spill on the floor because someone can slip and fall and sue them, I can unerstand being concerned about that, but you think they would take better care of the poor fishies, So long story short i applied there for pets only and on comments for the job part i put i would sty there all day and night maintaining the fish tanks and they wouldn't have to pay me overtime, just regular pay for the hours, hopefully i can get it, saving a fish's life would be well worth the lack of free time
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Old 01-17-2006, 05:39 PM   #7
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You can't steal the fish!!!!!!

Write a letter to the landlord from the fish and tape it to the tank. Present yourself as the lawyer for the fish and leave a phone # where they could contact you if they would like help/advice.
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Old 01-17-2006, 06:10 PM   #8
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Don't take the fish or do anything to the tank without authorization - you might lose your job.

Ask around the building and find out who owns the tank. It may belong to the department; hence the reason nobody is stepping up to take care of it.
If it belongs to a professor, he/she's probably too busy to take care of it properly, and is delegating the job to someone who really isn't into fish.
It may even belong to someone who is no longer there - in which case, it's probably just a burden that everybody would be happy to get rid of.

When you do find out who owns the tank - be nice and non-threatening about what you see wrong with it - they probably just don't know any better. Certainly bring up the electrical fire hazard and tell them that you have a responsibility to report it to the university's fire safety officer if it's not taken care of promptly.

If you have the time, perhaps the tank's owner will pay you to bring this tank up to tip-top shape and keep it that way. If it belongs to the department, point out that a dirty aquarium is a big turnoff to prospective students and visiting faculty. On the other hand, a well-maintained aquarium can be a focal point and a source of pride - especially if it's decorated with university colors.

If nobody is really taking responsibility for the fish, ask if you can take them home where they'll be well cared for. They may be happy to be rid of the responsibility.

Good luck and kudos for caring about those fish!
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Old 01-17-2006, 06:43 PM   #9
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Old 01-17-2006, 07:44 PM   #10
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Ask someone if you can take the fish home with you. I'm really wanting to tell you to steal the poor fish, but thats not right.

If you really don't think you will get caught....
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Old 01-17-2006, 11:05 PM   #11
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Lakeland's small, there's no department or fire inspector. Only a few very hard to find professors. That's why I thought of writing a letter first. A non-threatening way of getting these fish some clean water. Leave it on the tank or something. I guess I just needed some support for this. Nobody here tells me I'm nuts for caring about fish. Thanks everybody. I'll give it a bit after they get proper care instructions. If they don't do something, I'll step in with some water changes. I wasn't planning on taking care of another tank, but if it needs to be done.
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Old 01-18-2006, 08:48 AM   #12
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hmm just talk to like.. janitors or something. it could have been somebody was just going to give it out, but no one took it, so somebody had to feed it?
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Old 01-18-2006, 03:50 PM   #13
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tape this to the tank:

HELP !!! Can you please freshen up our water?
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Old 01-18-2006, 03:51 PM   #14
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lol, that might work, a little conversation bubble.
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Old 01-18-2006, 03:58 PM   #15
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sry ... forgot to put ...

yours truly,
Fish
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Old 01-19-2006, 01:47 AM   #16
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True, taking the fish is morally wrong in some aspects, but it's also wrong to just leave them there to be neglected to death. In my opinion, it's far more likely for the owner to just not care. After they get the note, sure they'll notice that someone cares, but that won't change the fact that they don't. If they did care, they'd have to be pretty oblivious not to notice the tank's horrible condition.
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Old 01-19-2006, 05:35 AM   #17
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Liberate the fish!

Put on the dark clothes and clava. Put Mission Impossible on the MP3 and get to work.

Leave a note from the PFF(Popular Fish Front) stating you could not abandon your comrades to oppression and that you will go on fighting opression when ever and where ever you see it.

Or just change the water once a week and take it on as your duty because its fairly evident that no one else will.
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Old 01-19-2006, 10:34 AM   #18
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I wouldn't take the fish ... as they'll likely just be replaced and fall into the same situation. Best case scenario is to find the owner or person in charge of their care and make them away ... or simply ask to help out since it looks like no is taking the time to do it.

Its either a case of they don't care or don't know.
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Old 01-19-2006, 11:04 AM   #19
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Hmmmmm, tough call....Ask around, see if anyone knows who they belong to. I don't think you should risk your job though. I would feed them and ask around to see if anyone knows who they belong to or who would be able to give you the 'clearance' to tend to them... if no one claims them, feed them, do a water change, get er' cleaned up- if you want to, and wait a while, if nothing ask the school head if you can take them to care for them properly... of if you want to, take care of them there where others can get some joy from them... but of course they will outgrow that tank in no time, if they arent already.... so either way - there are issues huh? Maybe if it's given to you, you can replace it with something that will fit that tank, like neons or guppies


Kudos to you for caring though
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