Responsible Fish Keeping


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Responsible Fish Keeping

In this section of the articles library you will find articles regarding responsible fish keeping and environmental issues linked to the aquarium hobby. We will for instance try to cover subjects such as invasive species, problems within the aquarium trade, cruelty to animals, over fishing and unsuitable fishing methods, breeding programs, and how aquarists can help endangered species and avoid causing environmental problems.

Many subjects in this part of the library can be controversial and different experts, as well as hobby aquarists, have different opinions. If you disagree with the opinions found in the articles, you are welcome to discuss them in our forum. If you have new information regarding the various issues, or feel that certain aspects have not been mentioned in the articles, you are naturally also encouraged to share your information with our visitors in the forum. Do not hesitate to contact us if you feel that an article regarding a specific issue should be included in this part of the articles library.

One example of an environmental issue that is of importance to the aquarist is the problem with over fishing and unsuitable fishing methods. Some fish species have been heavily harvested to supply the aquarium trade, and is now on the brink of extinction. Another problem is that the aquarium trade sometimes gets blamed for the decline of a popular aquarium species, when it is actually urban development and habitat destruction that have caused the population to become minimized. This is for instance the case with the Red tail shark, Epalzeorhynchos bicolor. When the species suddenly vanished from its native waters in Thailand, many people assumed that it was due to over fishing since the Red tail shark is very popular among aquarists. Later research did however show that the main factors behind its disappearance were more likely to be habitat modification, dam building and the draining of swampy areas. This shows us that we must be careful before we jump to any conclusions. This watchfulness naturally works in both directions – the fact that an area has been affected by habitat modification does not mean that the aquarium trade is not responsible for a decline in a certain species. When an area is seriously impacted by habitat modification it can also mean that we should refrain from removing the few surviving specimens from it to place them in our aquariums.

Cruelty to fish and other living creatures is another field that we will cover in this section of the articles library. Some people might find it a bit strange to oppose cruelty to fish, while simultaneously having absolutely no objection against a tasty meal of Fish & Chips or purchasing tropical fish that have been more or less kidnapped from its native home and transported to another part of the world in a small plastic bag. Most aquarists do however develop strong bonds to their fish, and wish to treat them as good as possible. This can for instance mean that you avoid purchasing a Betta in a tiny vase, since Bettas need plenty of space to swim around in and a decorated aquarium with hiding spaces. It can also mean that you refrain from purchasing dyed aquarium fish, such as the neon coloured “Painted Glassfishes” or “Fruit Tetras”, since these fishes have been subjected to wounding dyeing methods that do not only subject the fish to suffering, but reduces its lifespan as well and make it more prone to illness.

Responsible Fish Keeping Articles

Environmental effects of Snakeheads - Information about the Environmental effects of Snakeheads
Invasive fish species - An introduction to the problem with introduced species and the damage the cause.
Painted fish - An overview over the practice of injection fish with dye to create new
The Trouble With Hybrids - A view on hybrids
Water hyacinth - Introduction to the problems the water hyacinth causes around the world.

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Responsible Fish Keeping