literally no one asked
but i wanna talk about fish.
1. What was the first fish you ever owned?
These painted platys:
2. What is your dream tank?
A huge C-shaped freshwater planted community tank that fills an entire room filled with hundreds of directional schoolers and bottom dwellers.
3. What is your favorite fish?
Tie between pea puffers, banded khuli loaches, and otocinclus. I’m kind of obsessed with scarlet badis right now. I have a soft spot for bichir and other primitive fish, but I have no experience keeping them because I don’t have the money or space.
4. What was/is your most troublesome tank?
I haven’t had anything exceptionally troublesome happen to me in this hobby. Breaking down my planted 30 gallon to move it 3 hours north was incredibly stressful tho.
5. In your opinion, what is the best beginner fish?
Mollies, platys, guppies, endler’s livebearers.
6. What is your favorite fishblr blog?
I mostly use facebook for fish stuff.
7. Are there any fish that you dislike?
I’m personally not a fan of platys, mollies, tetras, guppies, or any livebearer in general. I don’t understand the appeal of fancy goldfish. I fucking HATE siamese algae eaters.
8. Planted tank or reef tank?
9. Favorite type of betta?
Don’t have one yet. Haven’t gotten into keeping them, but I would like to eventually.
10. Favorite type of goldfish?
Koi, in a pond please.
11. In your opinion, what fish should not be recommended for beginners (but often is)?
Goldfish, otocinclus, clown loaches, any plecostomus, bettas, corydoras.
12. Favorite species of shark?
All sharks are pure and good but I love wobbegongs so much.
13. What is the best brand/type of food?
Hikari’s frozen and freeze dried foods but NOT their flakes, pellets, or wafers. Omega One’s flakes, pellets, and wafers generally have much better ingredients than Hikari. Repashy started making gel foods for fish/shrimp recently and I love them (so do my shrimp.) Blanched veggies!
14. Favorite invertebrate?
15. What would you do if you suddenly had an extra 200 gallon (757L) tank?
Assuming it came with all the necessary filtration, lighting, substrate, etc, I would actually turn that into a paludarium.
16. What would you do if you suddenly had an extra 10 gallon (37L) tank?
Either a quarantine/hospital tank, a cull tank for my cherry shrimp, or a betta tank.
17. If you could remove any product from the shelves of a petstore (ex. Bettacube, ecosphere, fish bowls, etc.), what would it be and why?
Automatic fish feeders because they break and fish keeping should never be treated like a passive hands-off hobby, literally every single product that is marketed specifically toward bettas, those little tanks that you can grow herbs out of because they claim the plants take the place of a filter, vacation food blocks because they’re absurd, rainbow gravel because um look at it, low quality foods that claim to enhance coloration, probably a million other things. I would burn petsmart and petco to the ground honestly.
18. Have you ever bred fish?
Once on accident and the adults immediately ate their babies.
19. Gravel or sand?
Because i only do planted tanks, i’m going to say neither are ideal. Sand can make a nice accent area in a planted aquarium, but it’s not really a suitable substrate for growing plants.
20. Favorite non-fish animal?
21. Favorite fish fact?
Bathylychnops exilis has evolved a second pair of eyes that point downward. One possible explanation for this trait is it gives the fish the ability to detect predators that approach from underneath . A virtually identical adaptation has occurred in at least 4 totally unrelated species of fish. This is one of my favorite examples of convergent evolution. I have a cross section of the B. exilis eye structure tattooed on my leg:
22. What common myth about fish do you wish you could dispel? (Ex. Can live in bowls, 7 second memory, low maintenance, boring pet, throwaway pet, etc.)
Literally 99% of what people say about how to keep bettas. The nonsensical “1 inch per gallon” rule. Having plants means you don’t need a filter. Things that eat algae will solve all your algae problems. Anecdotal evidence=scientifically proven. Malaysian trumpet snails are a pest. Activated carbon in your filters is a necessity. Smaller tanks are easier to care for than larger tanks. Newbies should start with a 200 gallon tank. The more expensive the equipment is, the better it is.
23. Favorite type of filter? (Sponge, HOB, canister, etc.)
I currently run HOB filters and they’re great (yay aquaclear) but if I had the money I would get a good canister filter. Ideally, I would be running a DIY sump. Every type of filter has its pros and cons.
24. Do you start a siphon with a pump or with your mouth?
I actually use a pond pump with a length of tubing attached to it to perform water changes which is the best decision I ever made. But if I have to create a siphon for any other reason I use my mouth.
25. What do you think is the most beautiful fish?
Right now, scarlet badis. Underrated.
26. What do you think is the most dangerous fish?
Invasive species introduced to a non-native habitat.
27. Best way to deal with an algae problem?
Consistent and stable water parameters, not overfeeding, and if you’re running a high tech tank with high output lights you have to utilize pressurized co2 and not overdo it on the fertilizers. If you don’t correct the underlying cause, no amount of cleanup crew, “algae eaters”, or chemical algaecides are going to solve your algae problem.
28. Natural or artificial decorations?
29. Saltwater, freshwater, or brackish?
30. How did you get into the aquarium hobby?
I have always been a plant nerd. I originally got into the aquarium hobby just to keep aquatic plants, and it kind of spiraled out of control from there.