Tuesday, April 25, 2006

"Can I have a fish Mommy? Pleeeeeaaaaasssseeee?"
Those tiny specs floating around the wood are babies, MORE babies.
I heard these words a few months ago and thought "how hard can it be to have a fish tank?" Wrongo! Here are a few facts that I think we, in the mommy world, are not aware of. Let me give you a heads up before you too have another set of "children in the house"!
1. Fish can be pregnant and continue to have babies over a few months time. Here a few of our new clan. Last night our family grew by about 10, AGAIN. Just like typical babies, you are supposed to feed them small meals throughout the day. I have a hard enough time making sure I get my family fed on time, let alone my newborn fish. Then, unless you have a monster size tank, you will need to find homes for your babies who have managed to avoid being eaten by other tank mates. Another lesson that is hard to explain to kids. "Do you eat your babies, Mommy?" Be sure to get all males or females. Yes, you can tell the sex of your fish.
2. There is something called the nitrogen cycle, or New Tank Syndrome, that I'm sure you suffered through as a kid. You had a goldfish and a week later it was dead. So you got a new one. Not so easy with kids who are traumatized by each and every fish death. "Make them feel better Mommy!" Oh the pressure! Getting through the nitrogen cycle requires 6 weeks or so of monitoring your water with chemical strips, making water changes, etc.
3. Fish can get constipated. That was a fun lesson to learn.
I've enjoyed our little friends and now I'm faced with the challenge of how to move them to Tennessee. Fish are more of a hobby than a pet in my opinion. There is money and time involved that I was not prepared for. If you are going to set up a tank, read and have an idea of what to expect. It sounds nuts, but I've gotten a lot of help from FishGeeks, a great website with all the answers. My son tells me that I am now a "fish expert". Wow. What an honor.

1 comment:

mama's madness said...

Didn't I warn you? And we didn't even have babies! Thank you, Lord, for not answering our prayer for fish babies!!!!