Recently me and my boyfriend have been arguing bitterly over fishkeeping. Both of us are stubborn and we are both under the opinion that we are right. I was hoping to settle this once and for all by seeking the advice of knowledgable fishkeepers on these forums. Any input is appreciated.
Basically, my boyfriend decided that he wanted to start fishkeeping. I was really excited for him and I told him what species would be suitable for the little 3 gal tank that he had. He wasn't too keen on shrimp or fighters. He had his heart set on a kuhli loach. I read up on them and told him a kuhli would be too big for his tank and that he should get a bigger tank if he wants a kuhli, or keep his small tank and put something suitable in it.
However, a few days later he went and bought both a kuhli loach and a betta for his tank. I was irked, but he was unwavering in his choice and I couldn't convince him that the tank was overstocked. Everything went well for a week. Then, this happened:
Listening to the advice that forum members gave me, I urged him not to get any more fish and to consider returning his loach. He was really annoyed, he was all: "Ughhh, I'm not just having a loach... I never see him. And there's all that space at the top. How's it overstocked?"
I tried to explain it to him, but apparently it fell on deaf ears because he bought 3 guppies shortly after.
We got into a massive argument over it. I tried to convince him to take them back. But he claimed "They have tons of room to swim around. It's not overstocked.".
That whole week we pretty much argued about it. I honestly could have slapped him (unfortunately he lives in another country from me) after he claimed that he knew better than expert fishkeepers and that "they're wrong, my tank has plenty of room. Me and my family have had fish for ages. We know this stuff.".
We agreed not to mention the fish again, as it was pretty much tearing our relationship apart. I thought that was the end of it. But a few days ago he got a tiny baby kuhli loach to add to his 3gal. Now, when he got his big loach I told
him to cover the filter intake, as I had read that kuhlis and filters generally do not mix and that they're prone to being injured by them. He said his big loach had already 'learned' not to go near the filter.
But, last night disaster struck and his baby loach got caught up in the filter and well... it didn't survive. He then ranted about how fish were 'stupid things' and that 'all they do is die'. He even said that the loach was a 'waste of £1' and that it would make a good meal for the guppies. His large kuhli was probably quite traumatised, as he apparently lost his colour just after he incident.
I was really sickened by what he said. I thought he was a gentle, mellow kind of guy, but his 'blame the fish' attitude was really uncalled for. It led to more arguing between us and we were pretty much at the breaking point. He apologised this morning, but it still leaves a bitter taste.
What I would like to know though, is who is right? (Or are we both wrong?) In the thread about his betta, I was told that the kuhli was too big. Is his tank overstocked, like I claim? Or is he right, and there is plenty room? He checks his water parameters daily and they're always good and his fish appear to be in good health, so he thinks everything is fine. And if you agree it's overstocked, do you have any suggestions as to how I can convince him not to buy more fish? If you agree with my bf, then how do you decide how many fish is 'too many'?
Thank you <3