It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


Yes, They Feel Joy

page: 1

log in


posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 05:52 PM
Those who pay attention know I keep aquariums and find fish fascinating to watch. Generally, I prefer cichlids because they tend to have more complex behaviors than the tetras and most bread and butter tropicals, but those have their place too.

Since becoming a mom, I haven't had the time to devote to taking care of a cichlid tank like I'd like, so my tanks are mostly just standard tropicals. Right now, I have a 55g with 1 gold gourami (a big guy - he survived a summer outside in the pond, so he's Ausome [see what I did there]) and several schools of smaller fish - cardinal tetras, white clouds, and I used to have lemon tetras.

That's a lemon tetra. Mine had maybe a bit more yellows blush to the body which happens. I was just looking for a schooler when I got my original 10, and I didn't expect much, but as time went on and I started noticing them. I really got to like them. They were active and engaged and turned a pleasant subtle yellow with the black striping and yellow streak on the fin. But I never, ever saw them anywhere else after that day when I got the 10 on a whim. Over time, they dwindled down to 6, and then a bad water change axed those down to 2 lonely guys.

I've been looking and looking for more lemon tetras all over town since then because I felt bad for my poor lonely duo. They've been just two for at least a year, if not longer now.

But today ... it happened! My husband returned from the same pet store I got the original group from and excitedly told me they had another tank full, so off I went and back I came with eight more little lemons.

When they hit the water after acclimating, it was so amazing to watch the two react to suddenly have eight more companions! They darted all over! They bumped their new buddies (gently). They displayed like I hadn't seen in forever. They were so, so excited to see others.

Don't tell me fish can't feel joy and excitement. These two clearly felt something beyond the ordinary.

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 05:57 PM
a reply to: ketsuko

that would be a cool video. If you bring more home, you should make one.
We could all use some happy fish about now.

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 06:03 PM
a reply to: network dude

If I had thought they were going to do something like that, I would have filmed it, but as it is, unless you know how they normally interact, it would be hard to tell how excited they were.

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 07:14 PM
My roommates fish did the unthinkable the other month… they had babies they are a breed similar to Oscar’s called dempseys. She had them for years and they are bigger fish in the 500 gallon tank. One day there was a bunch of tiny things floating around and then the next thing you know there’s all these baby fish and they are getting big quick. Lol the pet store when she bought them they were supposed to be the same gender, I told my roommate apparently the fish have been watching to much don lemon and some news on Facebook she leaves up on her computer in front of the fish tank

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 07:30 PM
a reply to: Brotherman

Oh, and they are cichlids, so they will take care of those little things so you'll have a lot of survivors!

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 07:51 PM
So cool you have Cichlids!!!
I watch Ben Ocharts youtubes ( the cichlid guy) cause he has great info on canister filters & simple hacks instead of buying brand name replacement media. Found a listing of Turtle food ranked by accuracy of ingredients. Low & behold Cichlid pellets were recommended because of vitamin content. Altho they sink to the bottom they keep my Painted Turtle in nighttime hunting mode rooting around for food she forgot to snarf up earlier.

The incidental Cichlid learning I got was great!

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 09:07 PM
a reply to: Caver78

Before I had my kiddo, I kept a lot of cichlids. The Tangyikans were my favorite. I have a large 135g in my basement, and someday, I will set it up and I want to get a colony of Tropheus going in it.

posted on Feb, 27 2022 @ 10:59 PM
I have been a fan of tanks with cool fish. Know a family who had three monster tanks 150 gal type in his living room and we had a blast visiting. He had several Cichlids that changed color in a blink when the other cichlids got near. Oscars he had would do that. Bright orange and it would turn bright red.

Those are normally in the wild in small pools that are not attached to a creek or river that connects to other species of cichlid and they develop adaptations in their perpetual isolation that make for the brilliant varieties. How they get to these pools of water is by fish dropping the eggs or even fish into a pool of water that is rain fed. Fascinating how many species there are that are essentially the same genus and species with subspecies.

posted on Feb, 28 2022 @ 07:16 AM
a reply to: Justoneman

Ah, yes, morphs!

So many different species that have different color morphs that you don't dare cross because the only difference between them is the coloration they have. The theory is that local populations get divided in the lakes by some obstacle or other and then the local group tends to only have survivors of a certain slightly varied coloration, so over time the entire local population looks that way.

In Tanganyika, you see this in a lot of different species: Tropheus, Altolamprologus sp., Frontosa and Cyprichromis to name a few.

posted on Feb, 28 2022 @ 06:11 PM
Years ago I had a tropical tank, nothing fancy just a 30gal hexagon. Loved Angelfish & Gourami's plus my Pleco. After a series of disasters infected plants,ect I gave up. Marched the kids down to the Lake an restarted with baby Bluegills.
Besides being greedy they were quite the entertainers.

As they got larger one fish at a time we'd release it so no tank overcrowding.
To this day when I hit the lake I'm always armed with dried shrimp. I sit in the shallows and those suckers hand fed like they were born to it. It's exceptional when little kids trying to catch fish in play pails notice what I'm doing. I end up with Parents & kids all hand feeding!!!

So yes they feel joy.
They also make for a spontaneous petting zoo. And oh yeah, do NOT ever broadcast tropical fish flakes cause the giant Bluegill storm in & are pretty nippy. They are absolute bullies! BTW the Brown Trout under the dock are noticeably not elusive once they try the shrimp. Guys who've been fishing all day get a little miffed when they see all the fish you attract, while all they've caught is zilch.

I'm a lazy wildlife watcher. Toss out what a critter likes & wait.

top topics


log in