Sunday, October 22, 2017

fish devastation

Major tragedy occurred recently when five of Lu’s fishes died, all within a few minutes of each other.

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What’s worse is that they probably died after going through her hands.

She was cleaning out the tank. (She’s been a very good little caretaker, feeding her fishies twice a day and spending a good hour or so to clean out the tank once a fortnight)

What usually happens is that she scoops the fish out with a net and places them in a tub while she goes about the lengthy process of scrubbing out the algae-encrusted walls and using pipe cleaners to go into the tiniest parts of the water pump to clean it all out.

That day, during her cleaning, the fish were still fine in the tub.

Then, with clean water in and pump settled, it was time to put the fish back.

The problem was that the fish were swimming in algae-filled water. Lu refused to use the net which would deposit algae back into the tank together with the fish.

She tried catching the fish with her bare hands, scooping them up in her palm and picking out the algae. I was no help because I am very squirmy about touching live fish. I shouted verbal encouragement: “Go, Lulu, go! Aiya… there! There!”

(Everytime she did this in the past, it was always with KK or with Eva, a friend who visits regularly on Fridays and is quite the expert fish scooper)

She must have gotten overly rough in trying to catch the fish. I can’t think of any other reason.

Because right after they were all put back into the nice, clean tank, something didn’t look right.

Five of the fish appeared drunk. They dangled upright in the water like seahorses, spinning around dizzily with no apparent sense of direction. They started floating upward, belly facing up, but with fins still beating weakly. Two kept getting caught in the water filter, like they had no strength left to swim.

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Oh I could hardly bear it. I kept the faith, prayed that it was temporary disorientation, and told Lu to stop hanging around to check if they were still alive.

We came back five minutes later. All five were clearly dead. They belonged to two particular species. (The other two species of fish, numbering six in total, were swimming around like nothing was wrong. Perhaps they're stronger.)

She fished out their bodies and gently touched it to check for a heartbeat (she said).

Dead.

The quintet will join the rest who have expired, in Lulu’s Glass Fish Coffin. (she's decided to dry them now, instead of burying them)

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* The one on the left had a chunk taken out by a bird, we think, and the other two wormy ones committed suicide by leaping out of the tank. This fish hobby is really quite morbid

2 comments:

Fides Heng said...

I think Lu didnt kill the fishes with her hands. It could be due to the drastic change of water condition.. I guess it with my extremely limited fish tank knowledge.

My hubby always tell me we cannot do a 100% water change in the tank, due to some water quality n other technical terms.

My condolences to the fishes. Hope Lu wont feel too bad over it.

Sher said...

i hv no idea. but its funny how 2 particular species cannot take it, while the other 2 were fine. anyway we'll hv to be very careful... no lu din feel too bad. she seems to have gotten used to fish deaths.