A window inside life at Augustana College

.:Of Fish and Snails:.

Like many college students, especially pre-vet majors such as myself, one of the first questions I asked myself was whether or not I would get a fish in college. Fish are perhaps the perfect candidate for dorm room pet, as they are low maintenance and fun to watch. Throughout my childhood I had plenty of fish, but they were mostly goldfish. I knew that when I came to college and set up my tank that I wanted something different. Upon coming to this realization, I decided on a betta fish. Bettas are absolutely gorgeous fish, and they come in a plethora of colors with large feather-like fins. Sounds pretty cool right?

So on the 9th of September, I embarked on my journey as a college betta fish owner. This was the day that I welcomed the handsome Mufasa (Named after my favorite Disney movie and character of course) into my dorm and my life.

Mufasa on September 9th, the day he came home!

Mufasa on September 9th, the day he came home!

 Mufasa has been with me just short of 3 months. He has made trips home with me twice , and will also come home with me for fall break, as will the newest edition to the tank: Zazu, a blue mystery snail! (Also named for the Lion King character of course)

Zazu!

Zazu!

In 3 months, a lot has changed in Mufasa’s life. He went from living in a small plastic cup no bigger than a softball, living in unfiltered water to now living in a large 2.5 gallon aquarium with a filter for cycling and cleaning the water. Mufasa and Zazu’s tank also features two live plants, as well as an ancient war helmet decoration (Go Vikings!), two inches of natural colored gravel, and a leaf hammock. Mufasa, or “Fasa” as I affectionately call him, is often seen laying on his leaf hammock or resting on the live plants in the tank. He spends his nights resting in the helmet cave, where it is dark and he can have his alone time. Zazu spends both day and night roaming the tank (at a much faster pace than most would imagine).

Mufasa yesterday, December 3rd! Quite a difference, huh?

Mufasa yesterday, December 3rd! Quite a difference, huh?

 After Mufasa had been here about a month, I started to notice something about his behavior. When I would come home and would sit down at my house, Mufasa would eagerly swim out of hiding to greet me. Ever since he has begun this habit, he has not stopped. Whenever I am in the room, he is always looking for attention. As I type this post right he is resting on his leaf hammock and watching me do my work. While some may say that fish are not intelligent and do not notice things or cannot comprehend schedules, I do not believe any of that. Fish are much smarter then we give them credit for. Mufasa knows when I am going to feed him, before I even show him the jar. Fish are intelligent, and while they may not be at the same level as dolphins, they are smart beings who make good companions.

 Ever since I brought Mufasa back home from Thanksgiving Break, he has been vigilantly working on a bubble nest. Now raise your hands if you have no idea what that is? A bubble nest is exactly what it sounds like: a nest of bubbles that male bettas create on the surface, used to attract female bettas. So in other words, Mufasa is looking for a girlfriend. While Mufasa’s bubble nest is small and still a work in progress, many male bettas make very large bubble nests for attracting mates. Sadly Mufasa will not get his wish, as I am not equipped at the time to have another betta, especially a female and babies. While the bubble nest is in vain, it is still incredibly cool and fun to watch as he work on it.

Mufasa's bubble nest, a definite work in progress!

Mufasa’s bubble nest, a definite work in progress!

So the much shorter message to this insanely long blog post (I’m sorry!) is that I highly encourage all incoming freshman and current college students to take the risk and get a fish. I know that for me watching Mufasa, talking to him (yes I have conversations with my fish, call me crazy) , and taking care of him helps me to not miss my animals at home, as I’ve always grown up taking care of animals and having them as a strong presence in my life (can you tell?). Having Mufasa makes the dorm and myself feel much more at home! I highly encourage everyone to consider, but it’s not like I’m partial or anything…(hint hint wink wink nudge nudge) 

Well until last time, I hope you all enjoyed this blog post and enjoyed seeing Mufasa and Zazu as they make their internet debut! Have a great weekend everyone! 🙂

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Zazu!

Zazu!

 

5 Responses to “.:Of Fish and Snails:.”

  1. I reeeeally want a fish now.

  2. Thanks for this fun post! 🙂

  3. Mufasa is so pretty!!

  4. I love this!! And the photos are great.

  5. Thank you so much everyone! 🙂

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