Responsible fish disposal – New Zealand Style
I have made a few posts on the best way to dispose of fish. Responsible fish disposal does not mean putting them in a local creek or pond. That certainly is not the way to go. Native eco-systems can be quite fragile, and some fish, like the giant snakehead from Asia have an amazing ability to survive in most climates – possibly excepting mine here in Canada where the snow stays deep and cold for quite few months. Just don’t do it. There have been instances where Pacu have been found in a local lake and mistaken for a piranha. It should never have been put there in the first place, even though it is a much more passive fish that generally prefers to eat vegetable matter than meat.
But then there are the happy relocation stories, where a fish is moved from a smaller tank to a larger one because it is a treasured pet, or the family wants to make sure it has a good new home to live in. Sometimes relocation must be done because of outside influences like the owners of the aquarium are moving or otherwise unable to care properly for the fish. In many cases the fish are given away to other aquarists who can value them and treat them well.
Here is one of those stories where a store mascot outgrew its tank in abig way and had to be relocated to the local aquarium. Moving a huge Pacu out of a furniture store and into a new aquarium refuge in New Zealand
[Paco] has already grown to be half-a-metre long but before long, the four-year-old fish will grow to a mammoth 3 ft – not ideal when the tank he lives in is a mere 5ft long.
Owner Glen Fox, 26, said: “It is sad to see him go but we are pleased because he will be so much happier at The Deep. It is really good of them to take him in.”
Glen, his twin brother Barry, and grandfather Alan Gillbanks bought Paco from a local pet shop two years ago.
Then just a few centimetres long, Glen saw Paco as the perfect addition to the store’s growing exotic aquarium.
Pet shop owners explained that Paco would grow bigger, but not how quickly and to what extent his growth spurt would be.
Responsible Fish Disposal – Finding a Good Home
This is not a story where the owners were unaware of the size the fish could grow, but were certainly surprised at the speed the growth occurred. The store owner took the right course and found a safe and good place for the fish to be housed – in the “The Deep” where large fish can be housed and cared for as part of their mission. That is the ultimate way top practice ethical and responsible fish disposal where everyone is happy. At least the fish did not get into the natural waterways where its appetite could have wreaked havoc on a local habitat that could take years to recover. If you have a fish to get rid of, try to give it away to a responsible aquarist, failing that give it to the local pet store who should be able to find a good home. If all else fails, never release into the wild, euthanize the fish to prevent your local waterways form being inadvertently hurt. It may sound heartless, but it is better to end the fish life than damage your local habitat – it is reassuring though that most pet stores will accept a large fish, so death is not often required as a final resort.