Saturday, March 5, 2011

Something seems a little fishy....

Recently, my 8 year old purchased a 29 gallon fish tank and we began the journey of becoming fish owners. If any of you has ever owned a fish tank, you know that the tank has to go through a cycle to get the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates balanced so that fish can thrive. In order to do this, you are counseled to begin your tank with certain types of fish which are sturdier than others and are better able to handle the increase in ammonia that inevitably happens in the beginning. So, we began with one Molly and one Platy which have survived and thrived. One of them had babies, and six of those has survived. Because of the success from these 8 fish, we felt that we were ready to add more fish. So, we bought a guppy (who can kill a guppy?) and three neon tetras. The guppy died in a day, so we replaced him with another who also died quickly. We had our water tested: too much ammonia. Yesterday, we were changing some of the water in order to help with the water stabilization process (we have lost 2 guppies and 2 neon tetras), and I was reminded of a wedding in which I attended a couple of years ago. Our friends had discussed some of the details of their wedding with me to glean from my expertise. The bride, Amy, told me about her centerpiece idea, using male Beta fish, and I thought it sounded fun and unique. The thought was that guests could take the fish home afterward and then they would have a party favor as well. A unique idea it turned out to be indeed... They had done a fabulous job decorating and the centerpieces were lovely. When we got to the reception, our kids were extremely excited about the fish in the middle of the table. However, upon further examination, we realized our fish was dead. Oops! We decided to just stay quiet about it so that our friends wouldn't be upset. Well, as the night went on, we started hearing other people state that the fish at their table was dead. An hour into the celebration, we realized ALL of the beautiful betas had kicked the bucket. We talked to our friends about it afterwards and all had a good laugh over it. Apparently, they didn't realize that you have to stabilize the temperature of the water when putting the fish into new water, so all the fish were basically shocked to death. It's a funny story now, but also a good lesson to learn when planning your wedding. Make sure you do your research before choosing a unique decoration or any other idea you plan to implement in your wedding!

Erin Joyner, Wedding coordinator, Bryan/College Station

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