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Desolate Tanks: Being Forced To Leave the Hobby

I was forced to give-up my five babies to a reputable LFS the other day... The friend I kept them by--a 70-y/o lady with mobility issues--went into a care facility after a hospital stay & it appears she might be there for good. Her apartment was Section-8, so that means "Bye-bye, apartment..." and no place to keep the fish or equipment we've garnered over last year's time. I say "we" as it was initially just my way of trying to make her happy... placating having her give-up a Cockatiel she got fom a neighbor at another complex years before, after explaining how much work & expense keeping it would be.

Keeping these fish started with a couple of Serpae Tetras in a 1.5-gall desktop tank, then grew to a 20-gallon--later reused to relocate smaller fish in the community--and finally keeping four adult BP's with a 14"(+/-)IR-Shark in a 40-gal. breeder-style tank. After placing them all in a 5-gal bucket w/a portable air-pump & stone, with room to spare, I gave them to a reputable local LFS. (See my other posts for filtration details.)

 Later, I returned to the apartment, to pack-up things in preparation for moving... and as I walked from the bedroom to the living-room, I caught sight of the tanks--pumps off, lights out... still holding everything else, but otherwise desolate. Lifeless. It was then the impact of it all really hit me: I wasn't just saying farewell to another apartment this friend held... I was getting ready to say it to a loved one, after saying it to several more that one could say I cared for just as much--if not more!! I mean... I just got a larger moon-rock cave for my favorite female--Jude--to get comforatble in since she outgrew the last one! And it was my friend, whom named her, going into care at a state-run facility! I've seen how poorly those places do for their residents... It was all just so-sad!!

But then, I regained myself... and remembered I could always at least visit them all. At least until they were all gone for good.

A week later, I dropped-off the tanks at the same LFS to sell second-hand, without a profit to me. When I went to view my darlings once more before leaving, I was surprised to see most of them gone--in less than a week! I asked the manager what became of them & he replied "They all sold... Most the one's you mentioned, at least. Not sure about that BP-female you mentioned...." refering to Jude, my dear jewel. Even the IR-Shark I named Spot--for the non-health-related spot that formed on his head--was gone. "He sold the quickest!" the manager told me. 

All this says alot about life & loved ones. With my parents around twice my age, and all I've been dealing with--my health included--it's alot on a 40+y/o guy that came to so-love an odd breed of fish that's considered messy & a tank-buster... And Parrot Cichlids.



I really admire the way you put in so much effort and love  to help your friend. And in the process became attached to other littler friends. I suspect that they went to very good homes - fish people that really know probably recognized them for something special.