Re: NANFA-L-- Releasing (or not releasing) Fish: Some

Becky Kendell (
Fri, 25 Aug 2006 20:37:58 -0700 (PDT)

<<Awareness -- As Todd mentioned, most casual fish keepers won't fully understand the problems of releasing their pet fish. This gets right to the "animal lover" vs. "environmentalist" issue I alluded to before. Most aquarists would fall in the "animal lover" category, and believe it's a positive thing to set their fish free rater than euthanize them. No matter what you do, you're NEVER going to convince a lot of these folks to euthanize their beloved fish.>>

Sadly I think this is true. I just recently discovered NANFA, so I don't know much about it. Do you have some kind of program, or at least encourage members to educate the public on things like releasing fish? The thing that discourages me is, if you have this kind of stuff on your website, and say it in here, the only people who are listening are the ones who are already interested in this kind of're just preaching to the choir. How do you get to the people who think it's ok to just take care of their pets by listening to what the pet store says? Those who don't have the internet? I know there are people who just don't care, but there are those who would care if they knew, I know that from experience. I have always been concerned about this. I have the same concerns about reptiles, amphibians, and fish who are sold to homes where people have no idea how to care for them, or think they do because the pet store told them how (which is often worse than
just now knowing!) I want to get the word out there, but how do you reach the people who aren't looking for this information?

My opinion on the mention of asking pet stores to take in unwanted fish is I doubt that would happen. There may be a few out there who would, but lets face it, pet stores are out there to make money just like any other business. Most of them, in my experience, especially the chain ones, don't care what happens after the fish or other pet goes home. Actually with a few of them, it seems like they WANT the fish to die so you come back and get more, or come back and buy chemicals to "fix" your tank. I have returned fish before, but it was only under the asumption that I had just bought the fish within a week or so, it was from that store, and it was acting healthy.

I recently found out a coworker of mine has a juvenile common snapping turtle as a pet. She found it as a tiny baby and now it is about the size of a red-eared slider. I gave her a 55 gal. aquarium I had in my garage and did some research on them and sent it to her. I told her one day it would out-grow the 55, and she said she knew, she was just going to release it, since it eats live food, it should be fine. I told her she can't do that, and I explained why. I already know there is nowhere around here that would take it. Another friend of mine found a ball python in his garage and called everywhere he could think of, animal shelter, police, the local zoo at the park, a local nature preserve, all the pet stores, no one would take it.....being a snake lover, I took it and kept it until I found a home for it. So I told the lady with the turtle that I would take it some day, because I'd be willing to put the time in to find a home for it and I'd be willing to care for
it properly until then. But I know I just can't take every animal I feel sorry for. What is there to do then?

And then of course there is the problem of people who just don't care. How do you stop them? The authorities don't seem to care much even for the environmental issues there are laws against. They rarely even check fishing lisences. I've never seen them doing that in fact. My mom had a boss years ago who had a koi pond in his back yard. He was not an animal person though, it was only for decoration. He didn't want to put the work into keeping them alive during winter, so EVERY YEAR, he throws all his koi in Lake Winnebago! When the carp were spawning this year, I did see koi. It wasn't really bright, but it was definately yellow or white instead of brown like the others. It pains me to think that the little bit I taking in the snapping turtle instead of letting it go back, is just cancelled out a thousand times over by people like that.

Anyways, I think i'll stop my vent/rant for now :)

Everyone is raving about the all-new Yahoo! Mail.
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