Goldfish Guilt: Moral Dilemma

retiredprof(7)April 6, 2009

You all probably know that I'm back-filling a small pond to make room for WS stuff. So, I drained it down yesterday to about 5" deep and caught all the fish that I could. There are 5 black goldfish babies about the size of minnows that refuse to cooperate with the net. Making matters worse is that the bottom of the pond is covered with river rocks, so they hide out in every nook and cranny.

I'm getting frantic here. I expect the soil to be delivered later this week and I'll be ready to go. I tried again today to catch them but they're impossible to see.

I'm losing sleep over this. Do I just bury them alive or what? I'm starting to feel Buddhist.


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nikkineel(GA 8/7b)

hmmmm - fish oil makes great fertilizer!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 5:30PM
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nancy_drew(5 nw chgo burbs)

Is there any way that you siphon them out with a hose?

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 5:45PM
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nancy: You got me thinking.... I have a wet/dry shop vac. Maybe I can just suck out all the rest of the water and hope the babies make it through the vacuum process. It may be worth a try.


PS: I tried explaining to them that the bigger pond has lots more room, plants, food, etc. They just won't listen! UGGH!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 6:06PM
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nancy_drew(5 nw chgo burbs)

Kids... I tell ya!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 6:18PM
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nancy_drew(5 nw chgo burbs)

You know those fish are darn lucky! Most pets get neutered!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 6:21PM
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Nik: You're no help at all. ;-0

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 6:38PM
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nancy: This is the best. Last year I had a mouse in the house (actually ran over the keyboard while I was typing). Roommate freaks out and heads to HD for traps. I tell him "no traps unless they're humane." Comes back empty-handed.

I find humane traps online for $15 each. I buy two. While I wait for delivery, I set out Ritz crackers with a little goat cheese and cashews sprinkled on top before I go to bed.

"The poor things need to eat before I trap them."

"There's something totally wrong with you, you know that? Nobody spends $15 to catch a damn mouse. You just kill them is all."

Anyway, they loved the appetizers--the little plate was clean every morning. Made me feel good. I never did set out the traps, because the directions said they need to be released in a few hours or they would suffocate. I was afraid I'd trap them while I was asleep and wake up to mouse rigor-mortis in the morning.

I still have the traps but not the mice. I suspect they moved out last spring. The box on the trap says:

"Mommy, must we kill the mouse?"

"No, honey. The world is big enough for all of us."

That's all I needed to see. My credo.


    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 6:55PM
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I'm with Nik. Hope you are using that water in your gardens too. Fish poo water makes plants grow nice and strong. :O)

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 8:45PM
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nancy_drew(5 nw chgo burbs)

Prof, my dear departed grandfather taught us well, that everything has a purpose.

I remember not long after my husband and I married, our de-clawed kitty (we didn't do that to her, she was rescued) caught a mouse in our apartment. I looked over and she had this tail hanging out of her mouth... and it was wiggling! My husband ran over and grabbed the poor thing out of Abby's mouth and headed for the bathroom... I let out a scream, "NO!!!!" He looked over at me like I had totally lost my mind.

"You're kidding, right?"

"No! I am not kidding! That mouse has a right be here!"

"Uh... I don't think so. It's uninvited and doesn't pay rent"

"Let it go."

"Not in here I won't."

"Fine! Let it go outside! There is no way that creature will see the inside of our throne!"

Now he knows.

My grandfather would have walked a spider outside. I'm too lazy and the cats need their extra protein.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2009 at 9:53PM
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So how'd it go with the fish and the shop vac?

I'm a vegetarian, so I'm surious to know......LOL

It's nice to see that so many of you care about the little guys!

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 10:23AM
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I just laughed at the title of this post - Goldfish Guilt - it's amazing the things that can make us feel guilty, LOL

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 4:05PM
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nancy_drew(5 nw chgo burbs)

The human species has been feeling guilty since that incident with the apple in The Garden of Eden, why change now?

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 4:30PM
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Try rubber banding a piece of panty hose to the end of the shop vac hose. Doesn't matter if it's yours or someone else's. 8^)

    Bookmark   April 7, 2009 at 10:30PM
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Sheesh, Seedmama, I was just going to suck them up into the vac bucket and try to catch them in there. Your idea is more humane, but I still don't have any pantyhose. I'm down to a piece of cheesecloth or an old jockstrap.

I can hear the neighbors now...

"Henry, did you see that crazy man who lives across from us. He was out there this morning with a vacuum cleaner and had an athletic supporter tied on the end. What do you think he was doing?"

"Oh, I don't know, Maude. Is that the same one who wears a sheet around his waist?"

"Same one. I tell you that man is crazy as a loon."

"Well, he seems harmless enough. Remember the size of his tomatoes last year?


"Was it a large jockstrap, Maude?"

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 4:26PM
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monipsych(Zone 6)

I lurk but I don't post very often, and I just have to say. "I love you!" Your posts, even the titles of them just make my day! :) Even your Easter menu sounds delicious. Can I leave my husband and family and come live with you? ;) But then the fantasy will be ruined....... Thanks for the smiles!

    Bookmark   April 8, 2009 at 6:38PM
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Monica I've often thought the same thing... The guys on this forum, wow! Their yards look so inviting, they aren't afraid to talk about gardening, and have you heard about the size of their fruit....
I've been telling the single guys at work they should take up gardening!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 5:08PM
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Sorry Monica! I've got first dibs, LOL. Prof is going to come live in my MILQ. When he tires of it here I'll send him your way!

Prof, the pantyhose trick is used often in our house on toys that get lodged in the strangest of places. If you buy them at the department store you might get looks, but if you pick them up at a drugstore chain on a Saturday evening the clerk will just assume your wife sent you out for a last minute pair! Either way, just mumble something about Joe Namath. Pantyhose have gotten cheap now that Spanx are all the rage.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 5:36PM
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kqcrna(z6 SW Oh)

Cracked me up!

Your choice might be limited to
a. beg old pantyhose from women in the neighborhood
b. spend a buck and buy a pair at the drugstore
c. live with goldfish guilt

It could be worse than buying pantyhose- you could have a wife who sends you to the drugstore for feminine hygiene products.


    Bookmark   April 9, 2009 at 7:42PM
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monipsych(Zone 6)

Totally off topic now but I feel I should bump to first dibs. After all I was woken from a sound (drug induced) sleep at 3:30 AM by someone pounding on our front door. Here it was the police investigating a call for a domestic disturbance... ( the furthest from the truth here. ) But of course the freaky thing here, if any body follows the news in PA, we had an incident over the weekend where some nut job called the police claiming a domestic fight, but he was waiting to ambushed them. Killing 3 officers, wounded 2 others I believe. So I wonder if it was some prank?I have a church on one side of me and a 90 year old neighbor on the other. They just buried the officers today.It is so sad! Any who since I'm being investigated for being a victim of abuse I need a safe haven. Do I bump to first? ;) Prof have we scared you off? I declare my love and you ignore me? I'm wounded........ :(

    Bookmark   April 10, 2009 at 12:10AM
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Monica: I have so many women pining after me, I'm using an Excel spreadsheet to record dates and times of first contact. ;-)

Well, the jockstrap didn't work. Maybe I should have cut a few strategic holes in it. It may have been too small (these things are like bras--they start out the right size, but after a few spins in the dryer they wouldn't fit a Cabbage Patch doll). I swear I had a larger one when I tried out for Little League. I matured early.

So... the renegade fish continue to thrive despite living in a shallow pool, with no air, no food and a crazy man trying to suck them up through a Bike #10.


    Bookmark   April 10, 2009 at 6:12PM
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stage_rat(5--Indiana Riviera)

Is it too late to save the fish?

2 ideas:
My BF catches his guppies using a 2-liter container. Poke small holes around it. Cut the dome-and-spout off, turn it so it points into the bottom, and push it in. Wait for fishies to swim in, and then not know how to get out. Only works on small fish. Check it often, so they don't run out of oxygen

Idea 2, used by my brother-in-law: remove the rocks and either tip your liner so you just have one deep puddle of water, or if there's no liner dig into the soil to make a well. Remove water until that's all that's left. Scoop fish out.

If you post on Freecycle, you might find someone who's willing to work with you to get the fish, especially if it's to save them. Hopefully you won't get a response from the nasty woman from before.

    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 8:48PM
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newbie_in_nj(6b E/Central NJ)

Well, what happened to the darn fish?

They're not even MY fish and you've got me feeling for the situation...their survival and your guilt.

Left hangin here...kinda like your jock strap...LOL.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2009 at 8:23AM
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nancy_drew(5 nw chgo burbs)

Yeah, prof! What newbie said! What's up with the baby fish?

    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 5:50PM
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UGGH! I can't even deal with this! I took delivery of 4 yards of mushroom soil today and had a buddy help me cart loads into the beds. Still have 2 yards left to backfill the pond sitting in the driveway under tarps. It's the only space left to fill.

He's ready to go.

"We can't yet. I haven't been able to catch the remaining babies."

"What babies? Give me the damn net. I'll catch them."

Twenty minutes later he says "Forget that. You'll never catch those suckers. I'll start hauling more dirt to fill-in."

"No, no, you can't. Just leave it in the driveway. I'll deal with it over the weekend. Let me just pay you a few bucks for your help and (be on your way, criminal). I sit, with all my WS'd babies screaming for transplant and 6" of water in the bottom of the damn pond, and I let the help go. All for three minnows.

I'm still waiting for an epiphany.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2009 at 6:08PM
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