Little Back Story on Az Fish Rescue Pendley's Plentiful Pets

The friendliest place on the web for anyone with an interest in aquariums or fish keeping!
If you have answers, please help by responding to the unanswered posts.


Aquarium Advice Newbie
May 8, 2024
When I was a lil fry, I grew up with my parents having fish tanks but never really had my own and always wanted one like the giant 175 gallon tank my dad built. Once I finally got my own house about... ten years ago?? I started this hobby with a 10 gallon tank, put all different kinds of fish from Bala sharks to crawdads and Mubana cichlids....horrible combo I know....and learned fast what not to put together. So I expanded my love for fish and added a 55 gallon still didnt work for all the fishies and learned I need to keep certain kinds with others.... Also that hang over baskets weren't enough for 55s but big canister filters were the best find of my life. My love for fish encouraged me to expand. I bought two more 55 gallon tanks aaaaand it still wasn't enough. After countless hours of fish tank cleanings, learning cichlids needed more room, I wanted bigger!! A 75 gallon tank it was!!! Along with all the other tanks I was slowly building a collection. At one point my garage had a wall to wall of 55 gallon fish tanks. At the end it had a horseshoe pattern of tanks where you could sit down and be surrounded by fish.

By now I had so many tanks, but not what I really wanted...a 125 gallon. I spent days and nights scouring through facebook marketplace and craigslist hoping to find an affordable huge fish tank... Yes you guessed it!! I found a 125 in town and grabbed it as soon as I could. Yes it was used but so were most of my fish tanks. This gigantic tank was a huge eye opener on what I could build and become. I created a beautiful little community of tetras, plattys and mollys. Learned how much they mass produce and how to use breeding baskets. Next thing I know its been 3 years into the hobby and something super unexpected happened!! My Dad gave me the 175 gallon fish tank he built when I was a kid!! I immediately found a few friends to volunteer to help load this behemoth on the trailer and get it to my home. We Finally got it home however it was in rough shape from sitting in the old house for 2 years..... I had to teach myself how to reseal fish tanks, rebuild the tank stand and refurbish wood to look new. Two weeks later and alot of elbow grease we turned this 20 year old tank into a brand new looking 175 gallon tank....we even found a singing bass to go where the old one used to be.

Few years later I had grown a small reputation as the fish guy and accumulated 20+ fish tanks from 10 to 175 gallon tanks. Thanks to building that reputation people had started to give me fish tank after fish tank with fish after fish. I needed somewhere to put them and in order to do that I needed to build a shelf or rack of shelves. Our local lumber yard business always drops off giant pallets that can hold lots of weight. With a little bit of cutting, hauling away and building, we made a giant fish tank stand. Its made to hold from top to bottom, six 10 gallons, six 10 gallon, five 20 gallons and five 20 gallons. All made to hold rescued/donated fish and running off 10+ donated bubblers; a crazy air line system I jimmy rigged. next thing I know I'm getting calls or messages left and right to come rescue fish from people who can no longer care for the fish. those tanks were filled with fish faster than I expected, some even being potential monster fish I thought would fit in 175....they wouldn't.

I had to expand even more..... I ended up moving all of the fish tanks into my spare bedroom and officially becoming the fish room!! Doing this gave me a whole garage to work with and let me tell you, I put it to work immediately!!! I found a 10ft x 7ft x 28in kids above ground pool(1000 gallons) that me and a few volunteers set up into the garage and filled with water!! I used a few of those YouTube Videos on how to build your own canister filtration and we went to work. Built a 55gallon drum canister filter that does 10,000 gallons per hour keeping the pool crystal clear with gravel, filter pads and clarifying pads. Before I could even get the pool fully up n running, people were already donating monsters!! At one point I had redtails, arowanna, pacu, iridescent shark, shovelnose catfish n more all in this 1000gallon pool!! Sadly over time the pool rotted and started getting pinhole leaks throughout the pool. I needed to find a way to fix this...I tried to line the pool with flex seal and the seam. However I was impatient, due to the monsters freaking out in 55 gallon totes with bubblers that weren't big enough. I filled the pool up to early and the flex seal never cured in time....causing us to lose most of our monsters....Good news though! I was donated 1000 gallon stock pool to house the remainder monsters.

7 years into this hobby it had really turned more into a career. I got so busy that I started going out of town to Lake Havasu, Laughlin and even Vegas! Eventually I needed to find a way to pay for all these fish besides working an every day job. One day I just couldn't do it anymore.... I left my job and committed to fish tank cleaning professionally!! It has slowly picked up and started to pay for the expenses of my fish and get the bills paid. I am still cleaning tanks to this day and rescuing fish. I can't do this alone and I need your help finding all these rescues new homes. I hope to one day turn this to a non-profit and build a facility for all these fish. Tank you for spending the time reading this.
What a story. (y) It's clear you have " the passion" for fish. I'm the same way. I'm now closing in on 60 years of fish keeping. It gets into your blood and no matter what, it never leaves. ;) LOL
Sounds like a great story! It looks like you have quite a number of aquarium clubs in your area. I didn't see an official Aquarium Society. But I am sure you can find good homes. The Colorado Aquarium Society rescues lots of fish and help make sure they get to good fish loving homes, which made me think of that. Welcome!
Top Bottom