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Jul 11 2013

Disappointment

I got up early this morning and rushed over to the lab to suck on tanks — danios lay demersal eggs that sink to the bottom of the tank, and you can just siphon them up — and…nothing but fish poop. I have a sad face. It was probably overly optimistic since we only have a few adults yet and they’ve just been plunked into the system, but I had hopes. They look so happy! (Zebrafish visibly respond to stress by going pale, and as soon as these guys hit the tanks their little stripes were vividly dark blue).

Water quality is good, but now I’m channelling my grandmother and starting to fuss over their diet. They need to eat and get fat and good rich fatty food is just the ticket. We’ve got the brine shrimp hatchery bubbling and those should be ready tomorrow, and I’m going to be giving them a range of tropical fish foods. We will plump these little creatures up so they can give me more than just feces to look at in the morning.

We’ve also ordered a couple of defined wild type lines — at $20/pair, so we expect thoroughbreds — so the colony population should climb soon, which will help. Then, observations and experiments and breeding and colony expansion.

33 comments

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  1. 1
    Callinectes

    Today we colonise Minnesota. Tomorrow we will colonise the world!

  2. 2
    sawells

    “Then, observations and experiments and breeding and colony expansion.”

    I think this is exactly what the Alien Queen would say if she could speak. Has anyone checked PZ for ovipositors?

  3. 3
    Pierce R. Butler

    Zebrafish visibly respond to stress by going pale…

    Calling all adaptationists, explication needed stat!

  4. 4
    coragyps

    Schmaltz
    That’s the ticket.

  5. 5
    moarscienceplz

    We will plump these little creatures up so they can give me more than just feces to look at in the morning.

    Oh no! Get out of the candy cottage, little Hansel and Gretelfish!

    Thanks to PZ, I learned today that zebrafish are one of the species of danios. Do zebras have special features that make them particularly good research fish, or is it just an accident of history that their species got picked?

  6. 6
    embertine

    I, for one, welcome our…… oh. :(

  7. 7
    Larry

    The zebrafish are elbowing (finning?) one another and chuckling over how they pulled a fast one on the professor.

    “he wanted eggs, we gave him shit!”

  8. 8
    jnorris

    First give them a nice dinner with good wine, soft music and dim lights. Perhaps dancing after. Then home for a nightcap, satin sheets, rose pedals…

  9. 9
    george gonzalez

    As lately I’ve been tasked with getting all the Lead, Cadmium, Hex Chromium and DEHP out of our medical devices, perhaps I’m a bit hypersensitive, but i have to ask: is there some special magic that is protecting the fishies from all the possible things that could leach out of the hoses?

    Quite often, any plastic that has any enhanced flexibility at all has gained that by a considerable infusion of DEHP.

    See:

    http://www.fda.gov/downloads/MedicalDevices/…/UCM080457.pdf

    http://ec.europa.eu/health/ph_risk/committees/scmp/documents/out43_en.pdf

    You might want to verify that your flexible hoses are not flexible thanks to those possibly problematical chemicals.

    Just sayin’

  10. 10
    stanton

    Have you tried pumping in Barry White music?

  11. 11
    Alexandra (née Audley)

    Have you tried some mood lighting and perhaps some fishie erotica?

  12. 12
    Trebuchet

    As lately I’ve been tasked with getting all the Lead, Cadmium, Hex Chromium and DEHP out of our medical devices, perhaps I’m a bit hypersensitive, but i have to ask: is there some special magic that is protecting the fishies from all the possible things that could leach out of the hoses?

    Not just the hoses. The entire setup is commercial-grade plastics and none of it is intended for fish. The tanks are hamster habitats, as I recall, and the water sump is a plastic storage bin. I’ve seen how these types of things become brittle over time as the plasticizers evaporate into the air, who knows what they’ll do in water? I think I’d at least be investing in some 2-liter or so rectangular glass goldfish tanks for the expensive fish.

  13. 13
    quiet heretic

    You did make sure you ordered some females, right?

  14. 14
    David Marjanović

    Calling all adaptationists, explication needed stat!

    Communication: “stay away, dangerous place”. Kin selection, perhaps even reciprocal altruism.

  15. 15
    nomadiq

    When they go pale, do they become a different “kind”?

  16. 16
    Graham Ramsay

    I once put a pair of D. rerio in a plastic bag to take to an aquarium our Society maintains in the children’s section of our local library. When I got to the library the bag was filled with eggs which I was able to hatch out and subsequently grow into a tankfull of zebra danios. These are excellent little fish for those just starting out keeping fish.

  17. 17
    John Kruger

    I find it hard to believe that PZ does not have any Zebrafish porn on hand. That should get them going.

  18. 18
    Naked Bunny with a Whip

    They’re zebrafish, not duggarfish.

  19. 19
    jdinga

    Try playing this with appropriate lighting and background music: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnI-XR4u4DI

  20. 20
    timf

    moarscienceplz

    Zebra Danios are cheap and sturdy, perfect for starting out a tank and conditioning the water.

  21. 21
    DLC

    It’s the stress of moving.

  22. 22
    Paul S

    observations and experiments and breeding and colony expansion.
    You forgot “And then we take over the world!”, and the obligatory evil laugh as well.

  23. 23
    frankb

    “Animals vill be bred und scchhaughtered!”

  24. 24
    blf

    Yes, but what did poopyhead do with the zebrafishy shite? Dilute it and sell it as homopathetic “medicine”?

  25. 25
    Draken

    They’ve all turned gay. We knew we had it coming.

  26. 26
    elspeth

    I used to raise bristlenose plecos, in which endeavor I had the opposite problem (how do I make them STOP?). However the pleco forums frequently recommended Barry White for less eager breeders.

    So I’m seconding the Barry White.

    That many people on the internet can’t be wrong!

  27. 27
    Nes

    No, no, you need to remove the distractions, not add more!

  28. 28
    Nes

    Okay, that link didn’t work, let’s try again:

    No, no, you need to remove the distractions, not add more!

  29. 29
    Roger

    You’ve got Sea Monkeys? Cool!

  30. 30
    johnberg

    Elspeth: Baby plecos are the cutest fish evah!

  31. 31
    rogerfirth

    They need to eat and get fat and good rich fatty food is just the ticket.

    French fries done in beef tallow, smothered in shredded sharp cheddar and bacon bits, with a light sprinkling of chives. Let them wash it down with a fine hand-crafted IPA. I guarantee, the little fishies will put on weight. And if you stop them at two pints they’ll even move on to the procreatin’ once they’re done getting plump.

  32. 32
    Thumper: Who Presents Boxes Which Are Not Opened

    Then, observations and experiments and breeding and colony expansion.

    This sentence is just begging to be quote mined by fundies… I can see the results being hilarious :)

  33. 33
    dccarbene

    I think I see the problem.

    The tags are: ” My classes, Organism, Science”.

    I think the word is spelled “Orgasms”.

    Now – go and spread The Word.

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