NANFA-- Termometers

Ray Ake (
Tue, 20 Jan 2004 19:52:59 GMT

Nothing here that everybody doesn't already know, but since I got caught perhaps a reminder doesn't hurt.

My favorite fish is a male Jack Dempsey (Ciclasoma octofasciatum) that I have had for years. Beautiful dark blue, bright red tips on his fins and although most literature suggests a size of up to 7 inches, between 81/2 - 9 inches in length. But recently things have just not been right. Always, changing water has been an entertainment for both of us. He "fights" the python during water changes as I fill in his excavation (has always 'dug-out' his lair in the gravel behind the big stump 3 or 4 inches) during vacuuming. Recently he has be uninterested in the python's actions and all but given up his normal behavior of digging. And, become just a little 'concave' in the flank. Even feeder goldfish might live to tell another day. Ah well, all good things must come to an end I suppose - age catches up with all of us.

Then the other day, an order arrived with several new thermometers, and I happened to toss the thermometer from his tank in with the new ones to check them for accuracy. Readings varied quite a bit of course between them, but all were within a few degrees - except the one that was in his tank. It registered 12 degrees higher! He wasn't happily living in a 73 degree tank, it was 61 degrees!

So - even though everybody already knows - check the accuracy of your thermometers once in a while, things can change over time. I don't know when it started reading incorrectly, but things are very much back to normal now that the tank isn't a deep freeze. Python and feeders beware, and I frankly really enjoy our weekly 'landscaping' battles again.

I suppose the 'fin muffs' should have clue-d me.

Ray Ake
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