All Posts Tagged ‘aquariums


Something is Fishy about Staying at Home Here… (2 pics and a video)…


A man who doesn’t merely sugar-coat stuff and (lie like a snake), Governor Andrew Cuomo recently stated, “Do not underestimate this virus. It has beaten us at every turn, and it has surprised us at every turn. Don’t take it lightly. Don’t underestimate it. I believe the facts will change as we go forward. The more we learn about the virus, the more the facts change, and the worse it gets.”

With this Covid-19 situation going on, some people are going absolutely bonkers with regard to staying at home. Some people are vehemently protesting the staying at home orders. All this while most people see professional medical experts’ recommendations to stay home as being very insightful, intelligent, fact and data-based, and beneficial; many people don’t mind staying at home. We live in a very rural area, so we can go to nature areas without contacting people. At our home, we don’t have to go out to be close to nature; nature is part of the essence and foundation of our living space. (We have — and have had — dogs, birds, tropical fish, shrimp, and praying mantises; not that animals can ever truly be “owned”.)

I’ve kept tropical fish for around 59 years so far. Right now i maintain around 700 gallons of aquariums. Aquariums are a very relaxing, educational, and beautiful way of keeping nature within your own home. (Many apartments, where pets are not allowed, allow aquariums.) Think about getting one for yourself. Many can be maintained without a heater. Most tropical fish, despite what the stores tell you, do very well in aquariums kept at room temperature. Petco periodically has “$1 per gallon” sales, wherein you can get a 20 Gallon Long aquarium for $20 or a 40 Gallon Breeder aquarium for $40. Air pumps from Walmart cost around $10 and can run 2 or 3 aquariums at only 4 watts. Walmart sells natural gravel. Many home-bred fish, like Endlers Guppies or hardy Corydoras Catfish (or very colorful Shrimp), can be purchased on eBay.

Most all of my aquariums have live plants. There are all kinds of very beautiful live plants that you can get and they can be very enjoyable to raise and reproduce. Some of my aquariums have shrimp instead of fish, or shrimp combined with small fish.

The following well-done, short video is by Lucas Bretz, where he talks about the “Staying at Home” thing and aquariums. I disagree with him on a number of things regarding the way aquariums should be maintained but there are a number of good ways to keep aquariums that all work well. I met Lucas at an Aquarium Auction/Swap in Champaign, Illinois, and i gave him some young Daisy Neon Blue Ricefish that i bred. Daisy’s are extinct in the wild — due to pollution — and only aquarium enthusiasts like myself and others are keeping them alive. Cory (of Aquarium Co-op) is another great source for videos and aquarium plants and supplies. Prime Time Aquatics is also a great video source. LRB Aquatics sells home-bred fish, shrimp, and plants online.

Below are two different shots of my 8 feet long Angelfish aquarium.

Angelfish and Italian Val Plants … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2020
Large Aquarium with Angelfish, Emerald Corydoras Catfish, and Ivory Mystery Snails … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2020

Critters Pictures Haiku




People don’t realize that I
take all my photos without a camera.
Photographic memory, you see.



[Note:  This is a shot of an Ivory Mystery Snail and some Painted Fire Red Shrimp in one of my aquariums.  I breed both the snails and the shrimp.  It is so cool about how the snails and shrimp get along with each other so well!  The snails often rise up to expose more of their bodies to the shrimp… in order to get groomed and get little parasites or debris taken off by the shrimp.  I’ll have to get a shot of that sometime! ]

Ivory Mystery Snail and Painted Fire Red Shrimp… Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018


Once Upon a Twice




once upon a twice we sang and we cried
until gradual came quickly and the bigshots lied
there until a here was distance shut still
i’ll achieve perfection was perfection going nil

dark until some light we groped then we stared
until illusion died clearly beyond the visually impaired
here until a there was distortion made blind
when much of maligned mankind became carelessly unkind

no until a yes we loved and we hugged
twice a robber robbed himself of wisdom and the thief got mugged
theirs upon a hear as the songs played on
leave delusion in the night and be the light of dawn


[Note:   The following is a photo of a 24K Goldenback Shrimp that is one of the three varieties that i keep and breed in aquariums.  A previous posting of mine had Painted Fire Red Shrimp photos in it.  This particular shrimp is a female and she gave birth to most of her young.  However, if you look closely, you can see — behind her hind legs in what is called the skirt region — a few young still being carried in egg sacs.  When the shrimp are born, they are tiny versions of their parents, but only around the size of a comma in a sentence.]


24K Goldenback Shrimp (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

24K Goldenback Shrimp (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018



So many “here”s and so many “there”s




So many “here”s and so many “there”s
                 scurrying like little ants to their “anywhere”s
So many whens and so many hows
                 rushing to work or driving their plows

This many fingers how old am eye
                 that many soaring jets polluting the sky
Which way is right when all ways are wrong
                 beyond the grip of time need not move along

So many wants and not many whys
                 running for cover telling their lies
So many sorrows and not enough joys
                 too many war rifles making dead boys

This many dollars and not enough love
                 that many looking down but not up above
Which crazy leader as they kiss his hind end
                 damning the environment without earth as a friend



[Note:  The photographs are of Painted Fire Red Shrimp that i keep as pets and breed.  No, we do not have a name for each individual shrimp; however, you are welcome to try!  🙂  They do not need a heater — liking cold water — and eat very little, having a very low bioload.  They are becoming increasingly more popular as aquarium pets.  I really like them, as they are very interesting, comical, and do not fight amongst each other.  In the lower photograph, many are grouped together in one corner of the aquarium; that is because it is feeding time, and that area is where i feed them twice a day.  Note that some have cleverly discovered that they do not have to share the little sinking, white food pellets as much if they can snatch them off of the bottom and take them up the walls of the Matten Sponge Filter.  I also have (in other aquariums) a couple of other varieties.  One variety is called Snowball Shrimp; the females carry, for over a month, many white eggs (inside of them, that you can see), and they look like pure white snowballs.]



Painted Fire Red Shrimp (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

Painted Fire Red Shrimp (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018







Beyond Internal Hypocrisy…



There is an impeccability in true mindfulness.  Real mindfulness goes beyond hollow and empty ideals and stale mental blueprints.  It occurs when the mind is learning, as self-realization, (honestly) from moment to moment with what is actually taking place (without extraneous fabrications).  Then there are no ideals about “becoming better” in the future.  “Becoming better” in the future, psychologically, is usually a form of fraud, a form of deception.  Society accepts this as being normal… with one saying such things as, “I’m working on being a nicer person.”  Mental obtrusions about the future allow, in the psychological realm, cheating and duplicity to go on (consciously or unconsciously).  The future (psychologically) can be a fantasy.  One can easily fantasize anything, especially to be a better (ideal) person (while, in the present, a different reality continues to take place altogether). 

Hypocrisy, internally, of the mind to itself, is very easy.  To really learn, with integrity, is to fully be aware of what you actually are (in the present) without false pretenses or ideals about the future.  This must go beyond being brutally honest with yourself.  This goes to where fallacious separation and conflict naturally (without man’s fabrications) comes to an end.  This goes to where, when you are jealous (or angry), there is no distance or separation between the jealousy (or anger) and what you are.  Or, when fear takes place, there is no separation between the fear and what you are.  You are the fear.  When you are the fear, in (and “as”) awareness, then learning takes place about it; then it can be enlightening.  If you cover the fear up, deny that it exists, make excuses about it, battle with it from a distance, subjugate it, run from it, escape from it with all kinds of tricks, it will not (in such conflict) help you to understand its nature (which is yourself).   When anger takes place, seeing it with separation, with friction, with measurement from an isolated center, with opposing ideals (which are obtrusions about the future), perpetuates conflict (which anger is a part of).  Be in direct relationship with what the contents of your mind are (without pretense); they are you anyhow.  Then such right relationship opens you to real learning, real flowering.  Integrity is to be fully aware of what you actually are, without excuses, without judgments, without mental projections about possible future improvements.  Real integrity is pure (unsullied) perception and is real relationship.  Real relationship goes beyond conflict, is illuminating, and it transforms without effort, without blueprints.  Compassion, order, and integrity take place when right relationship deeply exists. 


[Note:   These are Daisy’s Neon Blue Ricefish in one of our aquariums.  They are very peaceful and playful fish.  Their eyes have a florescent blue coloring, but photographs do not show this well.  These were all home-bred by me.  The females carry eggs around attached to their bodies like a clump of grapes.  They are eventually rubbed off onto plants where they dangle from long stringy-like filaments.  They eat their own eggs, but i put green yarn mops in their tank and remove the mops to a separate aquarium away from the parents.  These fish were first discovered on Sulawesi Island in 2007.   The species was discovered in a small stream by the Indonesian invertebrates expert Daisy Wowor, while she was looking for crustaceans, and the species was appropriately named after her: ( Oryzius woworae. )]

Daisy's Neon Blue Ricefish (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017

Daisy’s Neon Blue Ricefish (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017

Daisy's Neon Blue Ricefish (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017

Daisy’s Neon Blue Ricefish (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2017


The story of the lagging worker…



His boss wanted to fire him because he was accused, by his coworkers, of moving at a snail’s pace.  

“I realize that I’m a bit sluggish,”  he exclaimed, while red with embarrassment.”  He then said, “There are a lot of sluggards in my family, I know; we were brought up wrong, and some of us are trying our best to get out of the vicious spiral that we are in; please give me another chance.”

“Well, OK,” said his boss, with a straight face.

And so he happily continued in his job of cleaning the inside glass of aquariums… not once thinking that his job sucks.  

[If you are still working for an employer, remember this little story, and realize that (in deep reflection) the observer may not be all that separate from the observed.]

Red Ramshorn Snail. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Red Ramshorn Snail. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015



Hypnotically fixated on a tiny point…

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Love all beings and creatures in life… not just your little self and family, race, and nation.


[A pair of Black Phantom Tetras.  The male is in the foreground… the female in the background.  The tiny adipose fin — at the top of the fish between the tail fin and the much larger dorsal fin — is clear in the males and red in the females.  The males also have larger and more flamboyant dorsal fins.  Most freshwater tropical fish of the Tetra group have the little adipose fins… but few have such distinctive indicators to distinguish the males from the females.]

Black Phantoms in our midst... Photo by Thomas Peace 2014

Black Phantoms in our midst… Photo by Thomas Peace 2014