Sold into Slavery

Discussion in 'New Members' started by Rasczak, 1 Oct 2012.

  1. Rasczak


    1 Oct 2012
    Likes Received:
    Hello "Need More Tanks" People,

    My name is Glen and I am a slave to fish.

    I've never had any interest in pets. My entire life I grew up with pets everywhere. My father, mother and siblings all had their 'loves' whether it was birds, cats, dogs, rodents, fish, insects, plants, a turtle that kept escaping etc etc.

    I didn't buy into any of it. I've had my fair share of pets but it was by way of someone else and I ended up looking after them.

    This other person in my life loves animals. When we went to my parent's place for a holiday, we ended up taking their 3foot fishtank and bringing it back to JHB with us. I've had other various tanks made for me because I always liked the idea of a pretty tank as an ornament to bring some life to a room. I like natural lived in homes, not tiled museums. None of the tanks ever came to fruition and just sat around empty.

    I then bought the woman a little 30L tank for her birthday. Nice complete little setup as she always wanted some tetras and I thought it would be an awesome little ornamental underwater garden thing for her. No mess no fuss right?


    I went from seeing no point in having pets to a completely obsessed maniac.
    I learnt of personalities (Red Eye Tetras are cousins to piranha? Why weren't we told???), how different they all are and how bloody expensive the little swines are.

    A friend then offered to let me have some featherfins or he was going to give the pair back to the petshop. So I set up the parent old tank. It was all downhill from there.

    We have gone from 2 empty tanks that sat there for close to a year, to 4 working tanks in a month. That is how crazy it has been. We are animal lovers (even though I don't like owning them) and so we researched everything properly. Each tank needed to be a haven of heaven for the 'darlings'.

    I won't describe my girlfriend's 2 tanks as those are hers. I have two and I'm planning a third already.

    Both of them are 3 footers / 900mm (thereabouts) / 110L tanks. The third tank I will work towards will be bigger and will gain all the fish that outgrow the 110L tanks. I don't believe in buying fish I will have to give away due to size, so I have tried to stay within dwarf species.

    Tank 1 (Bitchy Tank):
    2 x Syodontis Euptera (sp?) / Featherfin Catfish
    1 x Black African Knife Fish
    10 x Tiger Barbs

    Tank 2 (African Mbuna Cichlid):
    2 x Jewelled
    1 x Yellow Zebra
    1 x Red Zebra
    2 x Yellow Labs
    2 x Kribs
    1 x Red Top
    1 x Golden Mbuna
    1 x Snow (White)
    1 x Tofee (natural white, unmodified)
    1 x Convict
    1 x Venestus / Giraffe
    1 x Compressed
    1 x (Purple Tinted Looking Zebra / Unsure of name)

    I am obsessed.

    I think the biggest issue I have had in all of this (besides the cost), is the knowledge.

    Petshops suck! I do most of my shopping on weekends and I end up going into these shops where the people serving me will give me rubbish advice instead of telling me they don't know. I'm not sure if it's because it's weekend workers getting pocketmoney or they just don't care on supplying their customers fish that suits them.

    For instance, I got told I could put an Electric Blue into my Mbuna tank. So I did. I then find out it's a hap, they hate mbuna, and it inevitably got killed and partially eaten before I could stop it happening.

    We got told all tetra are happy with each other and red eyes are an awesome addition, only to find out that when they get bigger, they will potentially destroy the more peaceful neons and danios.

    We got told Baby Whales are hardy fish and easily kept, only to find out after it died that they are very sensitive to water changes. I was going to buy Elephant noses so there's no way I'm doing that until I know for sure they'll survive.

    It goes on.
    Two places I respect so far.
    Monkey Fountain Nursery near Cresta because they let me know if they are unsure.
    Pet Hyper just off Pomona Road because the guys there know what they are talking about and will stop me putting the wrong fish together. (I have the barbs for this reason instead of some other poor fish that wikipedia says is fine but will get chomped).

    Other shops couldn't tell the difference between a Lace and my Featherfins. They have completely different personalities.
    Other places didin't even ask me what I was going to do with the fish, they just whacked them in a bag and charged me.

    Lesson 1 in Beginner Fish Keeping: Most Petshops don't know what they are talking about. They just want your money and repeat business from good service is not important to them apparently.

    I think my favourite was asking a question and this bint reads the label to me. Jewells in the tank but the label says Blue Rams with a price.
    I bet these idiots walk away from me going on about how stupid do I have to be when the label is right there.
    Well guess what MoFo, I have an Android phone with google that says you are clueless and ignorant!!


    Was my first post allowed to be a rant? :D

    Hi guys!

    I like them!! I want plenty of African Species.
    I like wierdo pretty fish. I don't do comets or goldfish cold water types.
    I really want a marine tank but will give myself a few years with Tropical to learn.

    Some Gratuitous Photo Shots

    The "Bitchy" Tank Setup
    - It has changed since this. I now have River Sand in it and a bigger log on the right with the smaller log removed. It also has a lot more grass since that doesn't get as destroyed by the Catfish. It means there's nice hiding on both sides of the tank with swimming area in the middle. When it was set up like this, all the fish kept trying to fit under the roots.

    Shrek - The Featherfin in his root

    My Babies exploring their new home. The Blue Hap is top right. I should have known straight away when he seperated from all the other Mbuna. I now know for next time to watch out for certain behaviours.

    Om Nom Nom Time - Can anyone help me out with naming the blue guy in this picture? Not the red top, the other one at the bottom at the back.

    The Cichlid Tank
    Last edited: 1 Oct 2012
  2. Guest

  3. carlosdeandrade


    24 Dec 2010
    Likes Received:
    North Riding, Jozi
    :welcomewave: Sounds like you are having fun already!:) Marines are great, just read and research before you start. Personally I would start researching and then take the plunge....:thumbup:
  4. butcherman

    butcherman Moderator

    7 Sep 2009
    Likes Received:
    Kempton Park
    Welcome to MASA, read lots
  5. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

    11 Aug 2008
    Likes Received:
    well, fresh water crazy.
    Just wait until you do switch over to marines....
  6. jacquesb

    jacquesb Retired Moderator

    29 May 2007
    Likes Received:
    Cape Town
    A very warm welcome to MASA, Glen! I am echo'ing Riaan's post - so when you moving over to marines? ;)

    Thanks for the nice introduction!
  7. OP


    1 Oct 2012
    Likes Received:
    Thank you very much guys.

    I think the thing I love the most is the personalities of fish as well as the Aquascaping. I love building them their homes, watching to see what they like or don't like and then rearranging (if they can't) to what they seem to be telling me.

    I put a plant in as is (plastic container and all) because I didn't have time to bury it, and when I got home in the evening the little buggers (cichlids) had dragged it to another section because apparently the Jewel likes keeping that spot for bathing.

    I'm sold now....Marine or bust. I could probably read through the forums but any suggestions on what to look for? I keep hearing about protein skimmers etc but I've been to busy looking at pretty fish to pay to much attention to Marine "talk". I am definitely going that route though.

    PS: I clicked your Signature jacquesb so I'll start there :p
    Last edited: 1 Oct 2012

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