Plecos always remind me of giant turds hanging either on your glass or around on the substrate. All but the tiniest fry are ugly.
My brother has this whiptail catfish I am babysitting and it freaks me out. When he brought it over in a bucket I put my hand in to pull out some wood and I ended up with this big (it's like 30cm long) catfish thing in my hand. I don't even like holding fish at the best of times!
I am always worried I'm like going to get impaled by one of their spikes.
Oh and don't get me started on the poo factor.
I like corydoras and otocinclus. They are much cuter and less freaky haha
Oh my gosh - yes, my BN poos a LOT. I have to vac the tank every wc because of it, not that I mind. But there's a lot of poo, especially around his favourite bit of nomming wood.
Om-nom will likely end up with his own tank when he's grown to larger proportions, and I have the strohi tank re-built as I'd like it (and one day have some spare cash again..) after the move. He's done a great job of clearing out the wood mold, though, and is a little fatty-tum at the moment, but I think a trio of otos or something would be better in that tank than a giant fat adult pleco..
I like the look of whiptails - not sure I'll ever own one (or .. pick one up..), but they look pretty awesome in a big planted tank. If I was going to get a fish that grew to 30cms, I'd probably go all out and get me one of those armoured jobbies in the picture, which are incredibly beautiful really. No, really! When in a biotope, anyway, which is where I saw them first. Kind of eerie, but it really appealed to me. :)
I'm determined to own corys and otos at some point. I really like the little panda corys a lot.
Ha, Hallyx - really, the plateds are a bit of a pipe dream. The ones I saw were in a massive species tank, nothing I could ever manage or afford. But geez. I really liked them. Also on the fishwishlist are some red bellied piranhas, a moray eel and a couple of sea dragons.
It's a bit like wishing for a pet giraffe, at this point.
Oh, and the macrostomas (which are a little more realistic, just to be different there..)
I had to take the half-inch long Blond snail I added to Cole's tank out a while ago. He was so worked up I thought he might do himself an injury or spontaneously explode or something. He was okay with snails before I added that one - now they're all sinister things which must be dealt with violently, unless under three or four millimeters across and hiding in a plant.
Maybe that Blond snail was really rude to him.
"Hey, Bigmouth! Try and eat me, yeah? Go on, I dare you. You've got the gob for it.. rather like having a chum bucket set in the middle of your face, I'd imagine. What's that? Can't get me into that gigantic cakehole? HAHA. Wussfish."
Oh dear...now you've made me spray coffee all over my keyboard.
I know about wish-fish. If I had a heated pond, I'd keep a Golden Arowana like this one (which I think used to belong to Junglist). Or, if I owned a small lake I'd stock it with Northern Pike...how's that for a giraffe. More like pet tigers.
Whales have calves.
Cats have kittens.
Bears have cubs.
Bats have bittens.
Swans have cygnets.
Seals have puppies.
But Guppies just have little Guppies.
And here's the Fish stanza from The Scroobious Pip, a collaboration with Edward Lear
The Scroobious Pip went into the sea
By the beautiful shore of Jellybolee-
All the fish in the world swam round
With a splashing squashy spluttering sound.
The sprat, the herring, the turbot too
The shark, the sole and the mackerel blue,
The flounder spluttered, the purpoise puffed
And when the whale began to spout
And every fish he shook the tip
Of his tail as he gazed on the Scroobious Pip
At last they said to the whale- "By far
You're the biggest Fish - you know you are!
Swim close to the Scroobious Pip and say-
Tell us all about yourself we pray!-
For to know you yourself is our only wish;
Are you beast or insect, bird or fish?"
The Scroobious Pip looked softly round
And sung these words with a liquid sound-
Pliffity Flip; Pliffety Flip;-
My only name is the Scroobious Pip.
Oh gosh - Arowana. Now there's an ambition. I really need to marry a millionaire or finally write that best-selling novel with film and game rights, etc., one of these days. A heated pond! Imagine what one could do with that.. (*eyes piranha picture... then photos of ex-husband...*)
Moving right along.
I really love Edward Lear, too. =) Thanks for the poems! I'd forgotten about The Scroobius Pip.
Here's a haiku poem by Kobayashi Issa (translated by Robert Hass) which a recent thread of yours reminded me about:
These sea slugs
These sea slugs,
they just don't seem
And pikes! Now, there's a lot of lovely poems about pikes. I think I already posted Ted Hughs' effort, which is a pretty awesome poem. Here's some others by a couple of great poets:
The Pike By Amy Lowell
In the brown water,
Thick and silver-sheened in the sunshine,
Liquid and cool in the shade of the reeds,
A pike dozed.
Lost among the shadows of stems
He lay unnoticed.
Suddenly he flicked his tail,
And a green-and-copper brightness
Ran under the water.
Out from under the reeds
Came the olive-green light,
And orange flashed up
Through the sun-thickened water.
So the fish passed across the pool,
Green and copper,
A darkness and a gleam,
And the blurred reflections of the willows on the opposite bank
The Pike by Theodore Roethke
The river turns,
Leaving a place for the eye to rest,
A furred, a rocky pool,
A bottom of water.
The crabs tilt and eat, leisurely,
And the small fish lie, without shadow, motionless,
Or drift lazily in and out of the weeds.
The bottom-stones shimmer back their irregular striations,
And the half-sunken branch bends away from the gazer's eye.
A scene for the self to abjure!-
And I lean, almost into the water,
My eye always beyond the surface reflection;
I lean, and love these manifold shapes,
Until, out from a dark cove,
From beyond the end of a mossy log,
With one sinuous ripple, then a rush,
A thrashing-up of the whole pool
The pike strikes.
And speaking of Roethke, whom I adore, here's some more of him:
Journey into the Interior
In the long journey out of the self,
There are many detours, washed-out interrupted raw places
Where the shale slides dangerously
And the back wheels hang almost over the edge
At the sudden veering, the moment of turning.
Better to hug close, wary of rubble and falling stones.
The arroyo cracking the road, the wind-bitten buttes, the canyons,
Creeks swollen in midsummer from the flash-flood roaring into the narrow valley.
Reeds beaten flat by wind and rain,
Grey from the long winter, burnt at the base in late summer.
-- Or the path narrowing,
Winding upward toward the stream with its sharp stones,
The upland of alder and birchtrees,
Through the swamp alive with quicksand,
The way blocked at last by a fallen fir-tree,
The thickets darkening,
The ravines ugly.
For sale: by order of the remaining heirs
Who ran up and down the big center stairs
The what-not, the settee, the Chippendale chairs
—And an attic of horrors, a closet of fears.
The furniture polished and polished so grand,
A stable and paddock, some fox-hunting land,
The summer house shaped like a village band stand
—And grandfather's sinister hovering hand.
The antimacassar for the sofa in red,
The Bechstein piano, the four-poster bed,
The library used as a card room instead
—And some watery eyes in a Copley head.
The dining room carpet dyed brighter than blood,
The table where everyone ate as he should,
The sideboard beside which a tall footman stood
—And a fume of decay that clings fast to the wood.
The hand-painted wall-paper, finer than skin,
The room that the children had never been in,
All the rings and the relics encrusted with sin
—And the taint in a blood that was running too thin.
And because Roethke's name reminds me of Rilke's name, and this is such a wonderful poem (one of my all time favourites):
Again and Again by Rainer Maria Rilke
Again and again, however we know the landscape of love
and the little churchyard there, with its sorrowing names,
and the frighteningly silent abyss into which the others
fall: again and again the two of us walk out together
under the ancient trees, lie down again and again
among the flowers, face to face with the sky.
I need BOXES! I mean. I really am glad that supermarkets recycle their paper waste these days, I really am. But for goodness' sake! - it's really inconvenient when you're looking for a stack of smallish boxes to put things in and they've ruthlessly crushed all their boxes right before you go there to ask about them, five times in a row.
I'm having minor anxiety attacks, as things seem to be going quite slowly with the packing for various reasons and time is ticking away... money's pretty tight as well... I can feel the effects of the worry and stress on my health. The last thing I need is to get sick right now.
I just pray we can get this to all go smoothly.
I have the feeling that getting over my severe reluctance to ask people for help might be a good idea, at this point.