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The Amazing Benefits of Fish Keeping
Unlike many people who are new to this hobby, I started keeping tropical fish as a hobby when the pace of my career changed to a slower gear and I suddenly realized the need to look for passions in life.
Over the past four years, my hobby of keeping fish has grown in size and depth. Not only have I increased the number of fish tanks from one to seven to date, but I have also tried breading different types of cichlids.
From my observations, many people are discouraged from taking up the hobby due to the perception that it is a chore to maintain the fish and fish tank. However, my experience tells me that the benefits of keeping fish far outweigh the drudgery involved.
1. It brings home a part of nature
Whenever I see schools of fish in the tank or lake, there is always an instant rush of joy. As I immersed myself in watching the fish, it gradually put me into a state of mental calm. Water and fish have the unique ability to calm the mind and evoke immense joy. I have always been curious about fish behavior and have always been tempted to pursue a more intimate experience with fish.
Keeping fish at home provides opportunities to watch fish up close and personal. I can study the unique behaviors of the fish in the tank, something I can’t do in the tank or lake either. For less than a hundred dollars, it is possible to create a tiny piece of nature at home. It is indeed a wonderful and clever hobby. It gives me the convenience to appreciate the beauty of tropical fish as and when I wanted.
It also satisfies my desire to gain a more in-depth understanding of fish behavior as an aspiring aquatic scientist. Over the past few years, I had experienced the joy of successfully breeding more than ten species of cichlid fish. I find this to be an invaluable and exciting experience not only for me, but also for my family, especially my seven-year-old son.
Keeping fish also provides another avenue to develop my creative talent – waterscape.
Occasionally, I exercise my creativity in landscape design by changing the rock formation in the reservoir. The whole idea of doing this is to simulate a new environment for the fish and allow the fish to reestablish their habitats. This is essential when new fish are introduced to the tank where all territories have been entrenched by the existing group of fish. After changing the entire rock formation, the fish will immediately reward you by spending the next few hours tirelessly swimming in and out of the new rock formation, trying to get used to the new terrain and create new territories for themselves.
Whenever I am free, I will sit in front of the tank and observe the fish, sometimes for up to an hour. It is interesting to note that the fish exhibits many kinds of social behavior that closely resemble human behavior in the corporate world. I will try to write another article on more details of this fish social behavior.
Watching the fish gracefully swim in the tank with their dazzling colors can indeed bring you into deep relaxation and even a state of trance.
My mind immediately feels more relaxed when I watch the fish. As I let my eyes follow the fish and be mesmerized by the graceful body movement and vibrant colors of the fish, I drift deeper into relaxation. It is extremely healing. It’s a great way to give my mind a break from work and get a power recharge. With the stress we inevitably experience in our fast-paced lifestyles, creating channels for relaxation is an important aspect of a healthy lifestyle to keep stress at bay and maintain good health.
Along with exercise, meditation and music, keeping fish has added another avenue to enrich my life, helping me live a fuller and healthier life.
3. Education for children
Most of the children are fascinated by fish when they see fish for the first time, usually in the form of a trip to the local fish store or fish farm. Keeping fish at home can teach kids a few good things:
* They will learn about the habitats of fish and other aquatic animals.
* They learn how to care for small aquatic animals and plants.
* When they start keeping fish, it will instill in them a sense of responsibility towards another living creature.
* They learn and understand the basics of water treatment and how to maintain proper water quality for fish to live and even stimulate reproduction. This knowledge will then serve them well in the future when they study science and chemistry at school.
* They can follow the life cycle of fish species, which will allow them to appreciate biology.
* Most importantly, they will derive great pleasure from watching the fish display a variety of personalities. By observing the intricate features and behavior of fish, children will improve their observational skills.
* Taking care of fish is a great learning experience for young children. When the child is able to take good care of the fish, they will usually be able to watch successful fish reproduction. This will boost their confidence in the hobby as well as their ability.
4. Create Energy Flow at Home
I use the ceiling filters for the few larger tanks in the living room. Water flows down from the filter box through the pipe, creating a soothing sound as water drips into the living room. As the water flow hits the surface of the water, rows of water bubbles are created. These bubbles perfectly synchronize with the sound of flowing water, as if a piece of soothing orchestral music is constantly playing.
Visually, it creates a sense of energy flowing non-stop in various corners of the living room where the fish tanks are located. From the metaphysical or Feng Sui point, it creates an energy field that works non-stop in the home.
I had started this hobby only four years ago. The immense joy this hobby brings to my life and my family makes me wonder how I have been so blind to this wonderfully rich and accessible hobby all these years.
As I have discovered more about this hobby, it has become more and more addictive. I have no doubt that keeping fish will be a lifelong hobby for me. The vast species of fish, with their interesting and varied antics, will take more than a lifetime to fully appreciate. Life is indeed wonderful and enriching with fish. For me, life just started with keeping fish.
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