unforgettable stories in the fish hobby!! - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-03-2014, 02:51 AM Thread Starter
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unforgettable stories in the fish hobby!!

I was looking at the fish at petsmart the other day when I saw acei cichlids and remembered this unforgettable story. Well about a year ago I was walking through the living room, walked by my fish tank and just glanced in to make sure the fish were doing okay as I always do. I noticed something was off looked a little longer and saw my acei cichlid was missing, looked through the tank, nothing. Someone how saw out of the corner of my eye my cat running down the hallway with a fish, my fish in his mouth..long story short I ended up chasing my cat through the house with a broom for a good 5 minutes at least before he finally dropped it and I returned him to the tank to let him recover and go on to live a while longer before another cichlid killed him.

I want to here what other crazy, unforgettable and down right bizarre stories everyone else has had while keeping fish. Share away!
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-03-2014, 03:09 AM
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When I was a child (somewhere between 8-11) my mother used me as an excuse to get a fish tank (she used me as an excuse to see kid-ish movies I had no interest in, and to go to Disney world too (admittedly I enjoyed it, but wasn't interested when it was mentioned), and the like).
Anyways typically tacky tank, 10g with hood and filter (and heater), colored gravely crappy decor.. it was supposedly cycled (I don't know how.. doubt it actually was). My mom had the genius idea to "test if its cycled" by buying a decent sized goldfish to test it.. 2 days later it wasn't dead so she got more fish. Added 6-10 dalmation mollies (she thought I'd like them since I like dogs) and a small common pleco. Problem was, that goldfish was still in there and it was as big as if not bigger than everything else. Between adding them one evening and coming home from school the next day all the mollies were eaten or torn apart and dead (hood so no one could jump). That evening the pleco died after being bullied to death by the goldfish (uncycled tank probably also contributed). I felt so bad for it I took it out of the tank and into a large (clean) mixing bowl with tank water to get it away from the goldfish. It was so beat up it didn't struggle at all.. it died within 15-30 minutes. I was so sad for the pleco, and so mad at the goldfish. I flushed the goldfish (still live) down the toilet hoping it would die in poo (parents flushed remains of other fish, and remember I was a little kid, didn't know better yet, would never do any of that now).

Because of that when I got back into fish keeping nearly 20 years later, I wanted to get a pleco to prove I could keep one alive... Well now I have a 13.5" Leopard Sailfin Pleco (will max out at 18") in a 55g tank that's lived for 2 years with me since he was a tiny 2-3" baby. Now me and my husband had planned to build him a 200g + range (or buy pre-made) final tank, but life has gotten in the way and took the budget out completely. So now I'm trying to find him a new, and have a [RAOK thread] up for 'em, hoping to find someone semi local since he's too huge to ship.

Due to photobuckets new bs cost for use of images on forums I have deleted all photobucket accounts. I apologize if you enjoyed or found my photos helpful.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-03-2014, 04:21 AM
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Bath Time

From my sister-in-law: Came home one day with her aquarium full of bubbles and the fish all dead.
Asked her 2 very young boys what happened. The youngest one said: The fish looked dirty so we gave them a bath! Seriously.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-03-2014, 05:35 AM
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When I lived in Phoenix I had 125G tank with 2 huge Oscars. There was a neighborhood cat that used to come in when the door was open and stare at the fish. It would jump on top of the Oscar tank, and paw at the glass tops trying to get down to the fish inside. It was the cutest thing.

One day the huge 4 year old oscars were busy with a nest and the cat wondered in, the Oscars tolerated it for about 3 min, until one of them got a running start from down 6 foot of tank and smashed with all it's might into the lid the cat was standing on.

The cat flew half way across the living room (partly from fright, partly from impact) the glass top went flying and so did the light.

The cat turned around, put all of it's hair straight up on end, let out the most terrible hiss I've ever heard then turned and ran.

I never saw it again.


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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-03-2014, 07:49 AM
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I remember back when I was a kid in the fifth grade I had gotten my hands on a 20 gallon aquarium for free and I switched all of my equipment from my first 10 to the new 20. I had always wanted to keep Piranhas and now I was finally going to get my chance. I acquired three of the red bellied devils for the modest price of the measly few dollars I had stashed away and put them in the uncycled tank, for indeed I had absolutely no understanding of the finer points of fishkeeping. They survived and thrived on the endless living isms I fed them--anything I could get my hands on: bait shop minnows, feeder fish, giblets, hamburger. I mean, they ate absolutely everything I put in there--it was incredible. Over the year I had them I grew quite attached to them and indeed most impressed at their facility with murder. I was keeping them at my dad's apartment--a basement apartment--during the time of my life spent in South Dakota. And my dad was/is an airline pilot flying international routes so he would be gone two weeks out of the month and home two weeks. Anyway, I had gone and taken care of the fish a couple days before he was due to be back and everything was fine. But I get a call from my dad and he tells me there's a problem--the aquarium is a frozen block of ice with three frozen fish entombed inside. See we never left the heat on when nobody was there and it gets almost arctic in the the Dakotas, so when the aquarium equipment suffered a still-to-this-day unexplained failure (the heater was brand new and actually for a 20 gallon) the water froze into a 20 gallon tall exhibition of the Cretaceous period. I'll never forget the way they looked all frozen in place.
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-04-2014, 04:49 AM
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To continue with pirana.... i had a red belly pirana in my teen and one day got home and found it on the floor dry forgot to close the lid... so being carful not to get bit i put work glove on even if at first look it was dry and dead. Then on my way to throw it out (to big to be flush) i saw his gill move put the red belly in the fish tank next day he ate 3 4" goldfish. And lived 4 more years

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-04-2014, 06:19 AM
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So a couple of months ago I got an interview at a medical school in rural Tennessee and right about 2 days before my interview my rare Apistos spawned. So I decided to take my small brine shrimp hatchery with me on the interview so I could start it up the day before my interview and have it going in the hotel room / car so the shrimp were hatched and ready when I drove home to Philadelphia.

So there I was in Tennessee with my small DIY pickle jar / baby brine shrimp hatchery with the salt all premeasured and mixed with brine shrimp eggs, with the mini heater and bubbler all hooked up sitting in a bag in the front seat when I looked out the window and saw a giant hill with fossil bearing rock on the side of the road. Naturally I had to stop and poke around. So I decided to park on the curve of a side road that didn't seem to have any traffic at all, being in a sleepy rural town. The area was so rural and remote that I didn't even bother locking my car door.

I got a bit carried away looking at all the good fossils and walked around a bend in the cliff for a few minutes as I searched through the rocks with my small pick axe. Then when I'd collected enough I started walking back to the car and I see this cop lean in my car door through the driver's side and look over at the passenger's seat. He then backs out quickly and looks a bit startled. He turns around and sees me walking towards him with rocks in my hands and a mini pick axe. He backs up a few steps puts his hand on his gun at his side and says "is this car yours?" At this point I'm kind confused and slightly worried. The cop looks uneasy and trigger happy. I said "yes its my car." Then he says "whats that in the front seat in the bag?" So I look over and see my brine shrimp hatchery in the front seat half hidden in the plastic bag. I calmly explained how I've got fish and how I'm hatching food for them so I can drive back and feed it to them after my interview. He then asks me "Am I sure that I'm not cooking METH?" since there's such a big meth problem in the area.

Taking a second to fully understand what he was implying, I pieced it together, salt crystals, pickle mason jar, wires sticking out of it, parked in a random isolated place, abandoned car. I immediately assure him no its not! For some reason he visibly relaxed and I thought "oh good that wasn't too hard," and that's when 3 more cop cars appeared out of nowhere with lights flashing and surrounded my car on all sides, boxing me in. More policemen get out and start poking around in my car looking at the jar and asking me the same questions. Backup had arrived.

After a lot of cross questioning and a few sweaty moments on my side they seemed to accept my explanation. I'm sure I saw disappointment in their eyes... Lucky for me or it would have been hard to explain to the admissions people why I needed to be bailed out of jail for meth cooking charges the day before my interview!

This is what they saw in the front seat:
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-04-2014, 07:15 AM
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I set a bag of gummy worms on top of my lights of my 90 gallon reef for just a moment....and promptly forgot about them. The bag was open, they melted into the tank, and I lost all my fish/inverts and thousands of dollars worth of coral. The tank had a massive bacterial bloom from all the sugar, ate up all the oxygen and proceeded to bubble hydrogen sulfide (swamp gas) for a week. :/

Zapins that sounds familiar!!!!

When I was 18 and living in my first apartment I had a bowl with angelfish fry and some plants on the sink under a makeshift light with bubbler and etc. Someone apparently thought I was growing pot so 8 cop cars showed up at 3am and I got a shake down. I would not let them in (because I know my rights and there was no warrant) so I offered to show them the fish. They declined and slunk away back into their cars.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 03:39 PM
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Do many many fish keepers have cop issues? My sister, who now lives in my house, and her ex husband are going through a nasty custody battle. He stalks the house cause he's not allowed to see the kids and calls the cops on us regularly. Two weeks ago he called the cops because I was growing Marijuana and the kids needed to be taken away immediately! Needless to say the cops, fire department, and child services were all very impressed with the new LED lights on my fish rack.
As a side note one of the cops lives a few doors up and also keeps fish. He now has dibbs on my badis badis fry.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 03:56 PM
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Shooting my BB gun at a picture off the cover of MAD magazine I stuck to the wall and Ricochet hit the glass on 55 gal aquarium and glass broke,water everywhere, and was moments before my Mom was due home from work.
At least I didn't shoot my eye out I exclaimed.
She was not amused.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 04:18 PM
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I have also been accused of growing marijuana from my purchases of "large expensive high powered lighting fixtures". This incident has actually occurred twice in my 15 year stent in the hobby. Probably the most interesting incident was when my UPS driver delivered my 6ft T5HO light for my old 150G which happened to arrive at the same time as a LED light for my then reef aquarium. The driver actually attempted to blackmail me by not "saying anything" about my practices if I paid him off in a little "ace" for these deliveries. I asked him exactly what he thought I was doing with these lighting fixtures; he was somewhat nervous and jittery and stated that he thought I had a grow operation going. I looked at him and stated I kept aquariums, showed him on the boxes where it said "aquarium" lighting. He said nothing and got back into the truck and left. I never saw this driver again...I did learn from my new driver who was also into aquariums that he had put in a request to switch routes.

Another story comes from a 16" Red Bellied Pacu...I had rescued this fish from a friend who had it in a 10G. I grew this fish out in my 150G tank where it was a beautiful and personable fish. However due to the size of it and its jumpy nature I had put plans in motion to setup a garage pond for it and a pal. The pond was a 500G stock trough, pond was nearly ready for the fish to move into when a surprise visit from my grandmother ended that plan. She walked into my home and spooked the fish, he came flying out of the tank breaking the glass canopy and whacked into her in the process. Imagine a 16" pacu exploding out of the tank and hitting you in the top of the head...yeah she was nearly knocked out by this. The fish also flopped for a good 30 feet before my dog at the time ran him down and killed him.

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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 05:25 PM
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See that's when I would have turned it around on him and told him he better pay me a little "ace" or I'd report him to his company for blackmailing customers. Or better yet report him anyway.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 09:11 PM
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When I was somewhere around 6-10 or so I had a 10gal tank with the clown puke gravel and probably 4 fancy goldfish. One day my dad was draining water with clear tubing (no gravel vac attachment) and one of the goldfish with the eyes that stick out got to close to the hose and got its eye sucked out. I swear I still remember the eyeball going through the tubing into the bucket and the tank turning red....the fish didn't make it.
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 10:26 PM
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Oh wow the eye thing is horrible...

Oh I got my "revenge" on the driver this past year, I learned from my realtor who consequently also works part time at the UPS office that he still worked there. I told her about my incident with him and she put the bug into one of the higher-ups ear who pulled him for a random drug screen. Needless to say he is no longer employed.

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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 09-05-2014, 10:34 PM
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You all have made my day I don't have any funny fish stories but I've sure enjoyed yours.
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