Written By Craig Morfitt, BFAS
After 23 years of fish-keeping, I’m now tankless! For the first time in all those years, I do not own or maintain an aquarium.
I remember buying my first aquarium back in 1988 from Tropical Fish World which was located in the Heron Bay shopping centre in Southampton. I used to wander around the store whilst waiting for pizzas to be made at Pizza House next door. After a few visits, I decided that I’d get an aquarium and purchased a 25-gallon tank. That was soon followed by a 10-gallon tank that sat underneath as a quarantine tank. My next tank was a 45-gallon ‘long’ and those were the tanks that I owned when I formed the Bermuda Fry-Angle Fish Keepers and Breeders Club in 1989 (later to be shortened to the Bermuda Fry-Angle Aquarium Society we know today).
Sometime after that we moved to a larger apartment and that’s when I acquired a ‘fish room’. The spare bedroom became my fish room and I began to acquire more tanks. As my daughter’s got older and needed their own bedrooms, I was evicted from the third bedroom but all of the tanks were moved to the family room that then doubled as my fish room. I peaked at a total of 22 tanks with the largest being 180-gallons.
Another house move saw me downsizing the number of tanks as I moved a smaller number of them into the garage of the new home. A resurgence of my love of motorcycles signaled yet a further reduction in the number of aquariums. The garage was only so big so, in order to fit the new bike into the garage, the 180-gallon tank had to go! Yet another move a few years later saw the remaining tanks being set up in the garage of the new home with just a single tank being kept inside the apartment – my 75-gallon planted tank. My motorcycle collection grew to four and, as I bought more bikes, the tanks in the garage were sold off to make space.
For the last couple of years, I have only had the 75-gallon planted tank. However, I was also maintaining three other aquariums in homes and offices as part of my part-time aquarium maintenance business. I closed down that business at the end of 2010 and now, in September 2011, I’ve sold my last remaining tank.
I found that I didn’t really have the drive to spend time with my aquarium. Maintaining it was becoming a chore rather than a pleasure. I decided it was time to take a break. Contributing to the decision was the fact that I’m planning a big expedition around Europe and Asia for 2014 when I retire. I’ll be away for six months so I wouldn’t be able to maintain an aquarium. I’m also buying a Land Rover in England in preparation for the trip, so I’m selling off some existing ‘toys’ to pay for the new one. The proceeds from the aquarium sale will help. One of my bikes has already been sold and another is on the market. With the bike fleet reduced and the aquarium gone, I’ll be able to focus more on planning the big expedition. If you want to follow the preparations for the trip, you can do so a www.bermudarover.com.
I’m certainly not ruling out getting another aquarium some time after I retire but, for now at least, I’m happy to be tankless!