Sunday, June 19, 2005

Simulated Nature

I love animals, I have practically a miniature zoo with dogs, cats, goats, rabbits, chickens, a gecko, and recently fish. It's the fish I want to talk about. Now with most of my pets I try very hard to prevent them from having babies. My dogs are spayed and nuetered, my male cat is nuetered and none of them including the females ever go outdoors, I only have female goats and only one gecko. The fish and the chickens are the only ones that I want to have young.

So far while my hens lay eggs and I'm sure the roosters are doing their part I have no chicks because I don't own an incubator and evidently instict has yet to kick in with my hens because they aren't setting on the eggs at all. My only success showed up today, right now there are a number of tiny baby guppies in my aquarium and looking at the mother guppy more on the way.

I was really worried about my guppies, of the 8 guppies my brother bought me all but the mother guppy has since died. Most likely because they are feeder guppies that are meant to be food for other fish not pets so I don't trust the conditions of the tank they were kept in in the pet store since most of them died within a day in my tank while of the other fish I bought only one of my tetras has died and that one I know died after fighting with the other tetra and not from anything wrong with my tank. The tetra and the skirt are actually thriving, both have gotten bigger the skirt in particular has trippled in size in the two weeks since I got him/her.

Aquariums are much different than how most pets are kept. Dogs and cats don't live in anywhere near their natural environment (dogs are decended from wolves and cats from small african and probably also european wildcats). Aquariums however are meant to somewhat mimic nature, you put in rocks, shells, and either real or artificial plants (I picked real and they are so far still quite small), a filter so both keep it clean and give it some current. While not quite natural it's the closest most people can get to seeing the way fish act short of going diving so you can really watch the life cycle of fish in an aquarium. In the two short weeks I've had my fish I've seen the whole range, death, feeding, fighting, mating, and now birth. As I learned to my surprise guppies don't lay eggs, it's live birth! I was really surprised by that. Needless to say my aquarium is here to stay and I'm off to go take photos. Expect to see some photos once I get the film developed.
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