Wednesday, 24 September 2008

The Case of the Disappearing Silverfish

Prior to our departure for Tamworth I discovered that one of our goldfish was ailing. Lying sideways on top of the water. On first inspection I thought it was dead, but once I walked over to the tank it would wriggle and swim a little. Matt thought I was crying wolf - so many times I have told him that the snails are dead. The snails are dead! But just two minutes later they're seen cruising around the opposite side of the tank. He soon discovered that for once my prognosis was spot on.

It didn't take long for the fish to resume it's position on top of the water. Matt and I wondered what we should do. We didn't have the heart to exhume its still breathing body and boom-toss* it down the toilet or whatever you do with dead/half-dead goldfish.

My son was of course very interested. Being a three and an almost half year old apprentice doctor with a very unsterile toy doctor's kit, he was keen to get in on the action.

So we left it there. Our little dude told us that we should buy a doctor's kit for the other fish so they could look after the sick fish. Too cute.

While we were at home, we mentioned the sick fish to my Mum. Well to be accurate, I told her that the silver fish was looking a little worse for wear, and we thought it was dying. Mum was astounded. I couldn't figure out why. I told her we didn't know what to do with it, should we have removed it? We didn't know. We're no fish doctors. She was astounded that I had left a silverfish in the tank at all. Mum was confused with the fat critters that I am breeding in my linen cupboard - supersized silverfish - the insects, not the fish.

Anyway - I will get to the crux of the story.

We arrived home, and I was expecting to greet a very dead fish. I searched the tank. Nothing. Just three healthy, functioning swimming fish. No silver fish doing backstroke.

I asked my mother in law if she'd removed it, and she hadn't... No one else has been here in our absence.

So now it's a case of the missing silverfish. It's not in the tank. I've looked everywhere. Where can a half-dead silver fish go? Are goldfish cannibals?

And now my son keeps asking where the fish is (how do you explain death when there's no lifeless body to show??). He then told us that we should get another dying fish so that it can die too. And the poor little dude meant it too.
PS - Totally unrelated shot of the evening sky taken while we were away. I didn't really think you'd want a shot of our goldfish. Particularly not while the forensics are searching for the missing fish-member.
* Boom-toss - initially my son's word it means to throw something out, or jump on it - now firmly part of our family vernacular.


CurlyPops said...

Do you have a cat? Our cat used to like trying to swipe the fish out of the tank!
If not, then I think the goldfish have gone all cannibal on you.

Hoppo Bumpo said...

I think dying fish sometimes summon their last strength and throw themselves out of the tank. It might be on the floor somewhere?!

Taccolina said...

(mostly to the comments, not your post)

Sarah said...

Yes I have heard gold fish do eat each other. Not a nice thought I know.

Kate said...

Yes, they eat each other! I've heard this from other fish owners (I am not one myself) - kinda like the circle of life right there in your tank...

I am, weirdly, quite excited about what your bin may yield. I confess to eyeing bins in my own street since reading about yours and fantasising that they may hold my heart's desire. I'm not game enough to look, yet, so for now I'll vicariously enjoy your bin diving :P

cindy said...

I don't think that your son should watch Silence of Lambs but I think this might explain what happened. He needs to put away the doctors set, bring out Bob the builder and start cracking on some Hannibal masks.

Cass said...

Some of our big fish have eaten dead small ones. I guess the good thing is they forget they are cannibals 30 secs later

sparklygreenknickers said...

I think the other fish phoned for the fishy ambulance to come, and he's now swimming practice laps in the fishy hospital pool.

Or they ate him.

Either way...

Sarah said...

Hakuna Matata!