The not-so-pretty side of aquariums

Every day I learn something new about some aspect of fish keeping so I’m constantly changing my mind about how I want to set up my tank.  I think that’s the fun part about this hobby.  The planning and possibilities.

The one aspect that I didn’t consider (until now) is how terrible it is to keep fish.  They’re shipped from all over the world.  They’re captured from the wild and many die in the process of getting to your home.  Or they’re raised in a farm and fed a diet of other fish that are captured from the wild or raised in a farm.  They’re kept in tight quarters.  They’re loaded up with antibiotics and antifungals due to the overcrowding.  Then if they’re “lucky” they might end up in a somewhat comfortable tank that will never be big enough because whatever your tank size is will never match the Amazon River.  Not to mention the amount of electricity and water to run the show. All in all, it’s not a great thing for the planet or for the fish.  Any pets really aren’t good in general.  I’ve made my peace with this though because I really enjoy having pets and I want to do something selfish.  Still, I’ll do my best to minimize the impacts and resources and just be cognizant of these factors.

With that in mind, I researched which fish are farm raised and I think I’d rather stick to those fish.  I know it’s not as simple as farm>wild but I think I’m more comfortable with the idea.

Current plan:

  • 29 gallons
  • Substrate – Pool filter sand
  • Hang on back power filter with fishless cycling
  • Plants: Anything easy to grow.  I’ll need to add plant tablets for fertilizer since I’m not using flourite.
  • Possible fish –
    • Acara cichlid
    • Angelfish pair or Dwarf ram cichlid pair
    • Corydoras (4 to 6) – panda, aeneus, adolfoi
    • Gold algae eater

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