Jump to content

Fish getting stuck in decorations


Jim TN
 Share

Recommended Posts

One of my Harlequin Rasboras got stuck in a fake plant yesterday. He died before I noticed. Very upsetting. I don't like the fake plants but I was using it in my quarantine tank in case I needed to use salt. I will be making some changes but the issue got me worried about the new tank I am preparing. I am using driftwood and one of the pieces has some very neat holes that are basically small tunnels. Now I am worried fish may get stuck.

Any recommendations on what I should do?

  • Like 1
  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

29 minutes ago, Jim TN said:

One of my Harlequin Rasboras got stuck in a fake plant yesterday. He died before I noticed. Very upsetting. I don't like the fake plants but I was using it in my quarantine tank in case I needed to use salt. I will be making some changes but the issue got me worried about the new tank I am preparing. I am using driftwood and one of the pieces has some very neat holes that are basically small tunnels. Now I am worried fish may get stuck.

Any recommendations on what I should do?

Fill it with silicone and while it’s wet put sand on it in a color that matches the wood 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is unlikely that you'll have similar problems with driftwood. With plastic plants, if fish are spooked, they tend to dart -- and may instinctively head for plastic plant cover, not realizing that there is no flexibility to the materials. One thing you could try is making some spawning mops for cover in a QT tank. Photos attached. They are very safe and soft.

Screen Shot 2021-04-07 at 2.47.08 PM.png

Screen Shot 2021-04-07 at 2.47.22 PM.png

Edited by Fish Folk
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Initially I was unsure when I finally found him. But this is a large fake plant and the fish was in the very center. It took a surprising amount of effort to extract the fish as it was really wedged tight.

I was wondering how long a fish that is stuck can survive? The fish was wedged so tight that its gills probably could not work very well.

  • Sad 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

One morning I found a tetra wedged between the glass and a fake rock. It couldn’t move at all and I was sure it was dead, but when I moved the rock, it swam right off! I have no idea how long it was there, though. It may have only been a few minutes.

If the fish was that hard for you to get out, then I’m guessing it did die from getting stuck. ☹️ 

Could you post a picture of the wood you’re worried about?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I could be totally wrong, but I think a fish is less likely to get stuck in wood like that than a plastic plant. Like @Fish Folk said, the fish expect plants to be soft and flexible, and they should know by instinct that wood is not. So when they get spooked and dart, they won’t go in the wood. They might go behind or under it instead.

It is really beautiful wood!!

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I use plastic plants to supplement my live plants and give some extra color. Now I realize I'm much stronger than a fish, and I keep Harlequins myself, but I don't buy fake plants that are super stiff or have wire armatures and I test them pretty good with my hands- silk and silicone plants are pretty soft too if you want a fake plant still. I am often dismayed by some of the things pet stores sell as safe to put in aquariums. I think any decoration can be a hazard unexpectedly (as evidenced by @Hobbit 's story), and a sick and scared animal can do just about anything they wouldn't normally do because they are sick and/or scared. 

It's easy for me to say don't feel bad, but you were trying to do what was right by the poor thing and give it a place to hide/play in. 

Edited by xXInkedPhoenixX
1 more thing.
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I appreciate everyone's responses. I will get rid of the stiff fake plant. I'll add anubias and java fern to some of the holes and that should look nice as well. Need to get a spawning mop as that would be good for a number of reasons. If it appears a fish wants to go thru a hole that is too small, I'll fill in the hole.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...