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ml708
02/13/2015, 04:38 AM
We all know dogs, cats, rabbits and all sorts of cute cuddly animals have organisations that rescue them and help with adoption, but why not fish? I've never heard of any organisation which runs in the same principles for fish, though if there are I would like to know of them.

ichthyogeek
02/13/2015, 06:32 PM
Not really, but how do you think it would work?

The cuddlies, all can eat regular processed food, while some of our fish require live food to survive. Imagine the horror of watching an untrained lionfish eating damsels or something...

Some people hoard cats and dogs, but how would we define hoarding in terms of fish?

One of the big problems with even establishing a spcf (Society for the Protection of Fish), would be that fish don't have appeal to some people. I think a study I saw showed that people are genetically programmed to respond to baby mammals in a favorable manner. For example, we can awwww as much as we want to over kittens and puppies. Show a similar person a picture of a baby fish. Not as much "cute" factor in there....

I'm not trying to shoot you down, but there are some large differences that would have to be overcome for the establishment of one of these...

ml708
02/14/2015, 04:01 AM
Not really, but how do you think it would work?

The cuddlies, all can eat regular processed food, while some of our fish require live food to survive. Imagine the horror of watching an untrained lionfish eating damsels or something...

Some people hoard cats and dogs, but how would we define hoarding in terms of fish?

One of the big problems with even establishing a spcf (Society for the Protection of Fish), would be that fish don't have appeal to some people. I think a study I saw showed that people are genetically programmed to respond to baby mammals in a favorable manner. For example, we can awwww as much as we want to over kittens and puppies. Show a similar person a picture of a baby fish. Not as much "cute" factor in there....

I'm not trying to shoot you down, but there are some large differences that would have to be overcome for the establishment of one of these...

Indeed so and I fully agree with you, but we do have to start giving a voice to the fishes too. There is no excuse not to.

As with many animal organisations, not all animals can be saved. Depending on budget, a quarantine facility can be set up, with individual pipe switches to control the flow to each system.

Fishes can afterwards be graded by size, type and so on and be placed in larger holding systems.

ichthyogeek
02/14/2015, 06:49 AM
Hmm...I agree as well, but what constitutes cruelty to fish? Weather loaches (Dojos) need to be put in horrible conditions before breeding, so would that be cruel? Would the SPCF crack down on people who "overstock" their aquariums? What about the people who can get by with feeding their fish every month, rather than every day? A lot of the Animal Planet shows that starred the ASPCA and such, emphasized neglect, but what would be considered neglect?

ml708
02/14/2015, 07:09 AM
Hmm...I agree as well, but what constitutes cruelty to fish? Weather loaches (Dojos) need to be put in horrible conditions before breeding, so would that be cruel? Would the SPCF crack down on people who "overstock" their aquariums? What about the people who can get by with feeding their fish every month, rather than every day? A lot of the Animal Planet shows that starred the ASPCA and such, emphasized neglect, but what would be considered neglect?

With some animals such as dogs and cats, there is an increasing awareness on the importance of background checks and even interviews in some cases. Granted , its not very often carried out but with fish, it hardly even occurs.

I would be really pleased if shopkeepers educated their customers on each individual fish species before purchase too, which is rarely done.

There should also be permits and licensing fees for people who wish to keep fish above 2 feet in length (most don't have the space for such an endeavour), as well as stricter controls on import and export of fish.

Captive breeding should also be encouraged to reduce pressure on wild stocks.

In my opinion, neglect of a fish would constitute wilful negligence of an owner's duty to provide the five freedoms as stated by the world organisation of animal health.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_freedoms

It would include overstocking as neglect.

Of course as with all organisations, many animals will fall through the cracks and it may be hard to police any action against offenders, but as long as awareness is created, that may help in the change of prevailing attitudes slowly while directly helping some fish.

ichthyogeek
02/14/2015, 07:39 PM
The five freedoms, from my point of view:
1) okay, this would allow predator owners to do the normal heavy feedings every 2-3 days, rather than smaller feedings every day, correct?
2) Umm...Define discomfort. I can see how lab puppies in a 2X2 cage is cruelty, but....what makes our fish uncomfortable? I can see rapid light changes as uncomfortable for fish, as well as other popular toys that we buy to amuse ourselves with....
3) What if somebody's breeding? Dottybacks regularly show aggression in mating, and female sharks show bite marks due to males being overly aggression...
4) They're fish in a tank... any behavior can be considered not normal, because they're surrounded by 4 glass walls...and we even prevent them from jumping via hoods, something they will do in the wild (cough*freshwater hatchetfish*cough)
5) Overly timid and shy fish will have fear and distress whenever you walk by...

I'm not saying that these are wrong, but maybe they need some modification before applying to aquariums? Also, a lot of these would prevent the use of feeder fish, since that violates 2,3, and 5

ml708
02/15/2015, 01:42 AM
The five freedoms, from my point of view:
1) okay, this would allow predator owners to do the normal heavy feedings every 2-3 days, rather than smaller feedings every day, correct?
2) Umm...Define discomfort. I can see how lab puppies in a 2X2 cage is cruelty, but....what makes our fish uncomfortable? I can see rapid light changes as uncomfortable for fish, as well as other popular toys that we buy to amuse ourselves with....
3) What if somebody's breeding? Dottybacks regularly show aggression in mating, and female sharks show bite marks due to males being overly aggression...
4) They're fish in a tank... any behavior can be considered not normal, because they're surrounded by 4 glass walls...and we even prevent them from jumping via hoods, something they will do in the wild (cough*freshwater hatchetfish*cough)
5) Overly timid and shy fish will have fear and distress whenever you walk by...

I'm not saying that these are wrong, but maybe they need some modification before applying to aquariums? Also, a lot of these would prevent the use of feeder fish, since that violates 2,3, and 5

1) yes of course, it has to take into account natural needs of the animal. if its natural for them to be fed every 2-3 days then its only right to do so.

2) it depends on the species of course. for fish that require a substrate e.g jawfish, not having sand would cause discomfort.

3) The thing is, in many exhibits of aggression, there is room for escape in the wild. Not so in captivity where the loser is continually subject to the aggression. As for the female sharks showing bite marks, yes I do know sometimes they even die from being bitten, but this is a natural process. Even so they mostly have the chance to swim away and recover.

4) There is going to be an unnatural element in captivity, but conditions should at least simulate the wild to allow the fish to exhibit their maximum behavioural repertoire. A tank with a great surface area and high hood will allow freshwater hatchetfish to at least jump within the confines of the aquarium.

5) Plenty of hiding places should be provided for timid fish as well as appropriate tank mates. If the tank is placed in an area with low human traffic that would work better too. I definitely consider it bad for the welfare of a timid fish if it is affected adversely by the presence of high human traffic, especially with children knocking on the glass etc.

As for feeder fish, I don't really agree on their use unless absolutely necessary. It does prevent predatory fish from hunting but at least it won't violate all the five freedoms of a feeder fish. A lesser evil if you will.

These are rather good guidelines that will help our fishes live longer and healthier even by an ordinary hobbyist.