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Horror Story....and it's true

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Horror Story....and it's true

Post by Yeti on Wed 06 Apr 2011, 3:18 am

So this was a collegue's phone conversation today at work.

Hi sweetie, yes I've been to the petstore.

Yes it's ammonia! Yes your water is full of ammonia.

Yes, that's why your fish are covered in white spots.

I know you take your fish out every day and wipe them, to wipe the white spots off, but that's not going to work.

(By now as you can imagine the other 3 of us in the office are trying not to be seen laughing under our breath)

No sweetie, it's not good for the fish to be lifted from the water and held in your hand and wiped with a cloth, even if you wear a rubber glove.

(I'm not making this up, it gets better/worse).

Yes, the lady at the store said you have to empty all the water out and put new water in.

Yes, all the water, your tank is full of ammonia, yes today.

OK sweetie, I'll see you when I get home.

(By now we are all cracking up)

So she finished her call and we had to ask.

Her son has a 55G FW community tank, the tank is about 6 months old, and "he has had to replace fish every week. "

So the conversation then goes:

"Yes, I don't know why, but he is buying fish all the time, as they die all the time"

(Now there are a couple of us that keep or have kept fish in the office)

What size tank does he have?

"Oh it's a big one, 55 gallons, it's a community tank…well..it's got some Bleeding Heart Tetra's, he loves those, and neons, some sharks and catfish and an angel"

So how many fish?

"Erm, about 10?….well at the moment."

How bigs the filter?

"Ohh, it's a big one, they told it was the biggest, and good for the tank"

OK how big is big? (thinking a Mom and Pop store have been reaming this guy a new A**H*** for 6 months)

I move my hands, until I come down to about 8" x 8", and she nods…….. (Oh boy, a single filter for a 55G tank, tenuous but with a few fish possible).

How often do you clean or change the filter?

"Oh, he changes the filter once a month, religiously"

Does he know about the bacteria in the filter, and how it helps to soak the new filter in the tank, or somehow get a transfer of bacteria from the old filter to the new filter?

"Bacteria, what bacteria! No we put a new clean filter in there!"

How often does he do a water change?

"A water change? He's never done a water change. Why would you do a water change?"

Has he ever syphoned the gravel in the tank?

"No, he doesn't have a syphon…..does he need one?"

(Stay with me, it gets even better/worse).

At this point the other guy in the office says "Well you know the long strands that come out of the fishes butt…. the filter can struggle to take them up"

"Oh no… he is almost obsessive, when he see's one of those, he puts his glove on, and plucks it from the fishes…. behind, he doesn't want those in the tank"

At this point the office collapsed in hysteria.


So I sat down and wrote a beginners guide (Idiot's guide) to fish keeping, the basics, and told her to buy the "Dummies guide to Aquariums" I've seen the book exists.

Oh who was she speaking to? Her son…….her 30 year old son!

And yes they sold him a tank, filter, gravel, and a bunch of fish on the same day……..need I say any more?
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