Sunday, January 08, 2006

Osteoglossum bicirrhosum

Here's my fish story:

My family gave me a silver arowana this Christmas. I named him Mushu No. 5, following in the great tradition of naming all my awowana's "Mushu". It was fitting, as Mushu No. 5 is the 5th arowana I've owned, and plus he was given to me in '05.....I have some strange fascination with finding symbolic significance in numbers.....there are, incidently, 5 members of my immediate family........ coincidence? ........ ya probably.

What happened to the other Mushus is an interesting tale. Mushu (the first) was given to me one Christmas by my good buddy and roomate in med school, Neil (Vernor Gregory "Totoy" "The Hunk" Veloso). Unfortunately as I was home for the holidays, Mushu commited suicide by jumping out of his tank. Neil saved his carcass to show me when I got back. He actually contemplated buying a replacement before I got back and noticed the tragic holiday incident, and so I wouldn't be disappointed. What a nice guy eh?

Anyways, shortly after, Neil and I went back to Carti-Mart, and I bought Mushu No. 2. He grew up to a healthy 15". He could hardly turn around in his 20 gallon tank, so I bought him a 75er and prepared it for the great move. Unfortunately, on the morning of the great move, I woke up to find Mushu No. 2 floating upside down in his 20 gallon tank. My Ate Linda told me that he sensed the imminent move, and didn't want to leave his old home, so he just died?

Well, I had a huge and empty fish tank in my apartment, so back to Carti-Mart to buy Mushu No. 3. Mushu301 The third time is a charm. And 3 is my lucky number. Mushu No. 3 grew up to about 25". He had a voracious appetite for live feeder fish. Mushu302 Mushu303 He survived for several years, and even survived an earthquake that half emptied his tank (we lived on the 18th floor, so u can imagine the swaying that went on in there during earthquakes). Unfortuanately Mushu No. 3 didn't survive "the revenge of the feeder fish". I was very busy at the time going on duty every 3 days in the hospital, so I just dumped a whole bunch of feeders in his tank so he wouldn't go hungry. Some of the feeders died and clouded up the water. Mushu No. 3 didn't like those conditions, and soon he wasn't able to fight off the remaining feeders who started biting him. They eventually killed him :(

I didn't know Mushu No. 4 for very long. Shortly after getting him, I went home to Canada for the holidays. During that time, the maids cleaned out his tank. Apparently, he jumped into the toilet and swam away to freedom.

So that brings us to Mushu No. 5. Mushuno5 He is currently 6.5" long and lives in a 20 gallon tank. His diet consists of live minows, but he also likes dried pellets. I've placed him in a central room in the house, on the eastern side.....for good feng shui. Arowanas are lucky (especially if they're given to you as per Neil) because they look like smaller incarnations of the lucky dragon....hence the name Dragon Fish....they actually come to us from the Jurassic age, changing little since that time, thus giving us a glimpse into prehistoric aquatic fauna....I'll keep you posted on his progress.

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