All Posts Tagged ‘pets

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

42 comments

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
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I Had a Pet Frog (named Infinitum) but He Croaked… This Poem is Dedicated to Him…

24 comments

 

AD INFINITUM                                                        😦

 

My wonderful, magnificent
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.
But then, my wonderful, magnificent 
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.  
But then, my wonderful, magnificent 
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.  
But then, my wonderful, magnificent 
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.  
But then, my wonderful, magnificent 
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.
But then, my wonderful, magnificent
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.
But then, my wonderful, magnificent
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.
But then, my wonderful, magnificent
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.
But then, my wonderful, magnificent
pet frog croaked, and i was very sad.
The next day, he was quite alive,
and i was very happy.  

Ad Infinitum…                                                                🙂 

 

 

My Eastern Gray Tree Frog named Infinitum … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2019

 

 

 

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Cuddling with our Animal Friends

32 comments

 

 

Many of my fellow bloggers
     have a close and wonderful
     relationship with the animals
     in their lives
     (whom they often photograph)…
     such as Scifi, Francis, Curious Introvert, 
     67steffen, and others, with their dogs;
     others with their cats,
      Linda with her pet-like squirrels,
      and others with their cuddly pets.
     So i tried to get close to one
     of my sweet photography subjects,
     a wonderful wasp.
     It stung the hell out of me!

 

 

 

********************************************************************************

I was just kidding about the sting… but i was so close to it that i could have kissed it!   🙂
I did get stung by a wasp (while just walking along by the riverside) a number of days after taking this photo, but i am so impervious to bee and wasp stings — i don’t even swell up whatsoever — that it meant nothing to me.  

Not so friendly wasp … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

 

 

 

 

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We’ll Miss You Gab

43 comments

 

 

You were the best dog ever
and you are with us always
Most people don’t have a clue
about what eternity really entails
but we don’t have that problem

 

 

****************************************************************************************************

Our wonderful, little dog, Gabby (who was over 16 years old), passed away on Monday.   Marla and i really miss her!   Since we don’t have human children, this hits us especially hard.  That little sweetie was perfect in every way.   
We still have a number of other pets, including a Miniature Dachshund, Lola, (who is also quite a sweetie).  

 

Gabby … Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2018

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Critters Pictures Haiku

36 comments

 

 

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

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So many “here”s and so many “there”s

33 comments

 

 

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

 

 

 

 

 

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Dogs Rock!

18 comments

 

Dogs are so joyful to frequently hug
Dogs are fun to roll around with on the living room rug
Dogs cherish you in their own little pack
Dogs = oodles of love to give back
Dogs just wish you to be compassionately there
Dogs (if your face is ugly) do not give a care
Dogs each can be just a wonderful friend
Dogs chase their tails to no attainable end

 

[The first photo is of our 14-year-old Shih Tzu, Gabbie.  She just turned 14; yesterday was her birthday!  The second photo is a 12 million-year-old fossil wolf from Eurasia.  Could it be a distant ancestor to the dogs who own us?  Possibly!  (Putting a perspective on time here, recent research reveals that the ancestors of humans and chimpanzees may have begun genetically diverging from one another 13 million years ago; 12 million years ago we were still in the trees, safe from the terrestrial, predatory wolves.) ]

Our dog Gabbie. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

Our dog Gabbie. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

12 Million Year Old Fossil Wolf. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

12 Million Year Old Fossil Wolf. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2016

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Tweetie Pie’s Christmas Wish

23 comments

 

So, I am cleaning cages, and getting their food ready.  Tweetie Pie (one of the parrots that lives with us) is standing on a perch right near to where I am.  (We don’t call them “pets,” as — I’m sure like a lot of you dog, cat, and bird caretakers know — we turn into more “their personal servants” than “pet owners.”)   I turn to Tweetie and ask, “What do you want from Santa for Christmas?”  “Do you want a new learning video, a new toy, extra peanuts, pizza cheese, or maybe a lot of carrots, or tasty grapes, or apples?”  “So, Tweetie, what do you want?”

The following is what Tweetie’s response was (which we did not teach her… and which she also had said around a week prior to this when I had asked her the very same question):

“Everything”

She learns things from watching others interact, not only by teaching her directly.  I have (with Tweetie nearby observing) said things to the other birds like, “Wow! Your bowl is empty; good job!  You ate everything!”  (Dr. Irene Pepperberg, who does extensive research with parrots, says many of them have the mental understanding of a 5 year old and the capacity to verbalize of a 2 year old.)

Afterwards, as I keep cleaning, I said,  “If you want all those things, you better be extra good, because, as you know, Santa sees everything, he is always watching everything you do at all times.”   As I said this, one of the other parrots enthusiastically said, “Yeah! Yeah!,”  and Tweetie Pie looked up scanning her eyes all around the ceiling (as if wondering how Santa could see everything at all times).

They really like Christmas oriented videos, like Polar Express, and I’ve been playing those a lot lately.

Happy Holidays!  🙂

Tweetie Pie (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Tweetie Pie (1) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Tweetie Pie (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Tweetie Pie (2) Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

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Animal – Parrot Intelligence…

15 comments

.

Before I retired, I used to (as a hobby) keep and breed macaws.  Now that I’m older and retired, I have 3 pet parrots… two that are macaws, and one that’s a Yellow Naped Amazon. 

Parrots make great pets but, because of their intelligence, you have to give them a lot of time and stimulation.  In many ways, they are a lot like dogs… except they can talk.  I exercise all of my birds daily… taking them out of their large cages and moving up and down with them many times (as I simultaneously exercise).  They have their own high definition TV in their room, where they like to watch things like The Muppets, Sesame Street, and Rock’n Learn (learning/phonics) videos.  

Their intelligence is phenomenal!  Makes me glad I’m a vegetarian… though I realize that certain birds, like chickens, don’t even come close to the intelligence of parrots.  There are many other intelligent animals, including pigs and dogs.  Tweety Pie, the bird pictured here, talks in complete sentences.  She creates and makes up her own sentences and has great comprehension.  Some birds just mimic; others have comprehension.  For example, when we put on our coats or jackets to go outside, Tweety would ask: “Are you going to go bye-bye now?”  … or “Can I go too?”  We never taught her those questions; she came up with them herself; she says them with the right intonation for a question.  She sings complete songs, like the “Oh what a beautiful morning” song  and other songs including one by the Backstreet Boys.  (I don’t even know the lyrics to that Backstreet Boys song, thank goodness.)  Once, when I was in the living room and couldn’t get the Playstation to work, she said, “What seems to be the problem?”  I said, “I can’t seem to get the TV to work right.”  She then said, “Can I help?”  Something else!  Last night I kept the birds up a bit late because I was cleaning aquariums in their room.  On two separate occasions I told the birds that they could “sleep in late”… (by me not turning on lights or opening window shades until later in the morning); after each of the two times that I told them that they could “sleep in late in the morning,” Tweety Pie” said “Thank You”!  The night before, I asked the birds about which video they’d like to watch; I said, “What do you want to watch… Children Singing, Sesame Street, or The Muppets?”  Tweety said, “Muppets.”  So The Muppets were put on.

I tried to do videos of Tweety, but she won’t talk in front of a camera (at all).  Once, when I worked (before retiring), I recorded her conversations on an audio recorder, took it to work for people to listen to, and people were totally amazed.  (I included a couple of YouTube videos here — of other people’s parrot friends — for people to see, so that they can observe just how intelligent these birds can be; the ones in the videos are not against being video recorded.)  Many of these birds don’t just mimic.  Some, especially, have great comprehension.  One of our macaws, Scarlet, talks and has great comprehension.  When I was younger, I took her to work with me (to my classroom for the multiply handicapped); she would sit on my lap in the car, as I was driving, and was perfect in behavior in the car and in the classroom.  Sometimes Scarlet calls for me by name, saying “Tom, come here,” and Marla, my wife, says that it sounds like I have another wife!  Just last night, I had been playing a learning-video for them about colors, shapes, and counting, and as they (on the video) demonstrated counting to ten; Scarlet then, after they got up to ten, said “eleven.”  

(See the videos below.  The one of the African Grey Parrot, named Einstein, is one of many; to see other of her – she’s a female – videos, do a YouTube search on “Einstein Texan Talking Parrot”; there are other videos of another bird, that’s a show bird, named Einstein… but I like Einstein from Texas best.)

Tweety Pie. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Tweety Pie. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Peace…

6 comments

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Peace is everyone’s responsibility.  We must all go beyond violence and care for one another.  One is different from, but not separate from, whom one perceives.

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I’m 63 years old and I’ve kept tropical fish ever since I was in the 5th grade.  I even had an aquarium in my college dorms when I went to college.  For a long time now, I’ve been keeping, raising, and breeding, various forms of miniature catfish called Corydoras (“Cory” catfish).  In terms of peace, all of the species of the genus Corydoras are totally peaceful and non-belligerent; I have never, in all the years that I’ve had them, ever observed them acting aggressively or being hostile to one another, or toward other fish.   I was taking photographs of my miniature Corydoras Reticulated Julii Catfish when I noticed them laying eggs.  In the bottom photograph, the female is with a male (doing their thing); look closely at her bottom ventral fins; she is holding two eggs in those fins (as the fins are held together in a prayer-like fashion).  Later (after they are fertilized) she will (carry them around for quite some time) and then secure them to plant leaves or upon the aquarium glass.  (These catfish are definitely good for going green while keeping aquarium fish.  They do not require aquarium heaters, and two separate aquariums can be maintained with a 4 watt air pump.)  Corydoras are, like I mentioned, extremely peaceful… (plus they are beautiful and are always comical in their actions).

 

Trio of Corydoras trilineatus. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Trio of Corydoras trilineatus. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Corydoras trilineatus mating with eggs below clasped in female's bottom fins.  Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015

Corydoras trilineatus mating with eggs below clasped in female’s bottom fins. Photo by Thomas Peace c. 2015