My husband’s voice called from the dining room, “I think we have a dead fish”. Aside from the yuck and awwwww factor, that meant we had just one fish remaining: an 18 year old, five inch long, super-grouchy Clown Loach. We’ve had only Clown Loaches in the tank for a few years now because we got tired of seeing all their companions slowly disappear. I know, I know, Clown Loaches are supposed to be good companion fish, not aggressive, blah, blah, blah. Still, the evidence, or missing evidence, in our aquarium convinced us that our big old loaches should be a colony of three for a while. Then two. Then today, just one–the oldest fish we have, the one who survived the thermostat malfunction of 1999 when all his companions boiled to death. Hmmm, maybe he sabotaged the thermostat. He’s that kind of fish.
Yes, loach has been over-indulged during his lifetime, but that ends today! He does not get a forty-gallon aquarium to himself. We’ve gone out on a limb and purchased new fish for the tank. Three Congo Tetras are currently sitting in their plastic bag inside the aquarium, hoping like we are, that they won’t be the next victims of Grumpy Fish. If they survive the next few weeks, we’ll try some more: maybe a little Red-Tail shark or some beautiful Pearl Gourami. Cross your fingers for us (and the tetras) that our loach takes this offering of frozen worms and leaves the smaller fish alone.