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How do goldfish live through the extreme stress of transportation?


bagh

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Also, the fact that they can survive these trips is evidence that goldfish are hardy and resilient fish.

 

 

Still the question for me is should they be subjected to such a trip? We would be up in arms if they were puppies or kittens and being transported like this.

 

Commercially the fish are packed to the extreme, it boils down to costs. Least amount of water to keep weight down, smallest bag possible to keep the shipping dimensions of the box down.

 

The costs work out cheaper doing it this way even if every 10th box or so (or more) is DOA which is usually claimed back by the retailer. If fish were packed so that they weren't subjected to horrible conditions (and of course it can be done) the price per fish rises. So the cruelty they go through is totally imposed on them through economics and the end consumer's wanting them for as cheap as possible. 

 

I know it's not a very nice subject for fish lovers such as ourselves, but fish cop a pretty raw deal from humans from wild stocks to farm bred.

 

We do ship puppies and kittens in a similar way, though, it's just not as commonly mentioned. I know of very few pets that are not actually able to be sent by mail. Some do need to be picked up at the airport, like dogs and cats, but some can be sent direct to people's homes.

 

I agree with Mandy, too. It's an ethics thing if you put it that way.

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Then, if a leak sprouts, which would be fairly common due to mishandling, it'd be fatal for the fish.

From my experience, if packed correctly and even with a little mishandling, leaks are not common.
I disagree. I'd say 1/2 of my shipments have had some sort of leak. Even from places like RG that do it professionally.

 

Um . . . you can't disagree with my experience, because you didn't experience it!  lol 

But you can give your experience, which would be that half of your shipments had a leak.  :P

 

Anyway, how did that affect the box, packing materials and most importantly, your fish?

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Then, if a leak sprouts, which would be fairly common due to mishandling, it'd be fatal for the fish.

From my experience, if packed correctly and even with a little mishandling, leaks are not common.
I disagree. I'd say 1/2 of my shipments have had some sort of leak. Even from places like RG that do it professionally.

Um . . . you can't disagree with my experience, because you didn't experience it! lol

But you can give your experience, which would be that half of your shipments had a leak. [emoji14]

Anyway, how did that affect the box, packing materials and most importantly, your fish?

I've had three boxes that where soaking wet. In one of these I had three fish in separate bags one bag leaked and the fish died the other two where ok.

Another was koi and they had shipped 5 koi in one big box. The bag barley had enough water to cover the koi but somehow they all made it. Last was small box that had snails I had ordered. The where is tiny little bags in the box. Two leaked of the 4 one much worse than the other. In that bag the snails died.

I got one package that was over a week late. It had leaked and someone must have put it somewhere to dry out. The box was dry and smelled of rotten fish. I did not except the package and needless to say nothing good was in it.

I've also had two that where double bagged that the inner bag leaked but the outer bag contained it. Fish lived.

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Also, the fact that they can survive these trips is evidence that goldfish are hardy and resilient fish.

 

 

Still the question for me is should they be subjected to such a trip? We would be up in arms if they were puppies or kittens and being transported like this.

 

Commercially the fish are packed to the extreme, it boils down to costs. Least amount of water to keep weight down, smallest bag possible to keep the shipping dimensions of the box down.

 

The costs work out cheaper doing it this way even if every 10th box or so (or more) is DOA which is usually claimed back by the retailer. If fish were packed so that they weren't subjected to horrible conditions (and of course it can be done) the price per fish rises. So the cruelty they go through is totally imposed on them through economics and the end consumer's wanting them for as cheap as possible. 

 

I know it's not a very nice subject for fish lovers such as ourselves, but fish cop a pretty raw deal from humans from wild stocks to farm bred.

 

We do ship puppies and kittens in a similar way, though, it's just not as commonly mentioned. I know of very few pets that are not actually able to be sent by mail. Some do need to be picked up at the airport, like dogs and cats, but some can be sent direct to people's homes.

 

I agree with Mandy, too. It's an ethics thing if you put it that way.

 

 

 

But if 30% of puppies and kittens shipped ended up arriving rotten and dead in transport with the rotten smell of death pervading their transport boxes, the public outcry would be very loud and some people could end up in prison.

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Also, the fact that they can survive these trips is evidence that goldfish are hardy and resilient fish.

 

 

Still the question for me is should they be subjected to such a trip? We would be up in arms if they were puppies or kittens and being transported like this.

 

Commercially the fish are packed to the extreme, it boils down to costs. Least amount of water to keep weight down, smallest bag possible to keep the shipping dimensions of the box down.

 

The costs work out cheaper doing it this way even if every 10th box or so (or more) is DOA which is usually claimed back by the retailer. If fish were packed so that they weren't subjected to horrible conditions (and of course it can be done) the price per fish rises. So the cruelty they go through is totally imposed on them through economics and the end consumer's wanting them for as cheap as possible. 

 

I know it's not a very nice subject for fish lovers such as ourselves, but fish cop a pretty raw deal from humans from wild stocks to farm bred.

 

 

Really though, as long as there are people like us to buy these fish they are going to be shipped and go through that stress. I suppose it goes back to that other topic you made on the ethics of the hobby

 

 

Humans 'animal rights consciousness' is slowly getting better as our lives become easier through our advancing technology. Think about what animals went through 200, 100 ....jeez even 50 and 25 years ago and their treatment and what we expect for their treatment has improved greatly. Fish have taken a lot longer to be noticed, but there is progress.

 

I won't be around in another 50 years from now, but I hope that change continues and peoples perception of what they believe is suitable treatment to another living thing is ok because it's 'just a fish' advances from what is presently acceptable practice.

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Also, the fact that they can survive these trips is evidence that goldfish are hardy and resilient fish.

Still the question for me is should they be subjected to such a trip? We would be up in arms if they were puppies or kittens and being transported like this.

Commercially the fish are packed to the extreme, it boils down to costs. Least amount of water to keep weight down, smallest bag possible to keep the shipping dimensions of the box down.

The costs work out cheaper doing it this way even if every 10th box or so (or more) is DOA which is usually claimed back by the retailer. If fish were packed so that they weren't subjected to horrible conditions (and of course it can be done) the price per fish rises. So the cruelty they go through is totally imposed on them through economics and the end consumer's wanting them for as cheap as possible.

I know it's not a very nice subject for fish lovers such as ourselves, but fish cop a pretty raw deal from humans from wild stocks to farm bred.

We do ship puppies and kittens in a similar way, though, it's just not as commonly mentioned. I know of very few pets that are not actually able to be sent by mail. Some do need to be picked up at the airport, like dogs and cats, but some can be sent direct to people's homes.

I agree with Mandy, too. It's an ethics thing if you put it that way.

But if 30% of puppies and kittens shipped ended up arriving rotten and dead in transport with the rotten smell of death pervading their transport boxes, the public outcry would be very loud and some people could end up in prison.

Do you think that they all survive? Death I always a risk no matter what you ship. It's not always predictable.

As for the smell, fish decompose much more quickly. A fish 10 minutes dead produces quite the odor of not washed and cooled immediately.

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Also, the fact that they can survive these trips is evidence that goldfish are hardy and resilient fish.

Still the question for me is should they be subjected to such a trip? We would be up in arms if they were puppies or kittens and being transported like this.

Commercially the fish are packed to the extreme, it boils down to costs. Least amount of water to keep weight down, smallest bag possible to keep the shipping dimensions of the box down.

The costs work out cheaper doing it this way even if every 10th box or so (or more) is DOA which is usually claimed back by the retailer. If fish were packed so that they weren't subjected to horrible conditions (and of course it can be done) the price per fish rises. So the cruelty they go through is totally imposed on them through economics and the end consumer's wanting them for as cheap as possible.

I know it's not a very nice subject for fish lovers such as ourselves, but fish cop a pretty raw deal from humans from wild stocks to farm bred.

We do ship puppies and kittens in a similar way, though, it's just not as commonly mentioned. I know of very few pets that are not actually able to be sent by mail. Some do need to be picked up at the airport, like dogs and cats, but some can be sent direct to people's homes.

I agree with Mandy, too. It's an ethics thing if you put it that way.

But if 30% of puppies and kittens shipped ended up arriving rotten and dead in transport with the rotten smell of death pervading their transport boxes, the public outcry would be very loud and some people could end up in prison.

Do you think that they all survive? Death I always a risk no matter what you ship. It's not always predictable.

As for the smell, fish decompose much more quickly. A fish 10 minutes dead produces quite the odor of not washed and cooled immediately.

 

 

 

I don't know about the States, but I can't see it being that much difference than Australia if a 'shipment' of puppies (say 10,000) were sent from dealer to a retailer and 3,000 arrived dead from the trip (sometimes even 100%) and they had died a terrible and horrible death, that there wouldn't be a public outcry and everyone from school children to politicians would be outraged and the authorities would get involved and laws would be passed and enacted so that something like this didn't ever happen again in a single incident, let alone countless times everyday of the week as currently happens with en masse fish transport.

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I don't know about the States, but I can't see it being that much difference than Australia if a 'shipment' of puppies (say 10,000) were sent from dealer to a retailer and 3,000 arrived dead from the trip (sometimes even 100%) and they had died a terrible and horrible death, that there wouldn't be a public outcry and everyone from school children to politicians would be outraged and the authorities would get involved and laws would be passed and enacted so that something like this didn't ever happen again in a single incident, let alone countless times everyday of the week as currently happens with en masse fish transport.

 

Sounds to me like Australia needs to work on their fish shipping techniques, honestly. I know there are quite a few deaths with en-masse shipments of fish here in the US, but I am not aware of any of the stores in my area getting a 10,000 fish shipment ever, either. Maybe a 100 fish shipment if they are feeders or small guppies, but nothing large all in the same bag. 

 

This kind of question makes me wonder: Have you ever worked in a pet shop?

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Sounds to me like Australia needs to work on their fish shipping techniques, honestly. I know there are quite a few deaths with en-masse shipments of fish here in the US, but I am not aware of any of the stores in my area getting a 10,000 fish shipment ever, either. Maybe a 100 fish shipment if they are feeders or small guppies, but nothing large all in the same bag. 

 

 

 

 

Hi Chelsea,

I'm not 100% of what argument you are trying to defend after rereading your input into the thread. Are you completely happy with the way fish are treated? See no room for improvement? You seem a little on the defensive side in regards to my comments which I totally and wholly stand by. Do you honestly believe that people in the West would accept and allow puppies and kittens to be treated as we treat fish?

 

 

This kind of question makes me wonder: Have you ever worked in a pet shop?

 

 

My wife and I ran a very successful LFS for 18 years. I've been involved in every aspect of the ornamental fish trade, a trade that within Australia is worth around $300m to $400m, there's a lot of money to be made by people with vested interests. A shipment of fish lost in the whole scheme of a business is irrelevant and it's invisible from the public eye, hence there's no public outcry. Because of the profits available, sadly it can bring out the worst in people and I've seen practices that would make the toughest and hardest person cringe.

 

 

Whether it's been fish for sale, or fish kept as pets (including invertebrates) I've always strived for the best possible practices in their keeping. And exhorted to all who would listen to do likewise.

 

Here's a brief description of my reef tank in 2004 in a write up on RTAW, it was also featured in a 5 page article in Australian National Geographic magazine.

 

http://www.masa.asn.au/masa/content/view/31/58/

 

 

In regards to large fish shipments, I'm not sure of your immersion or depth of knowledge into the wholesale/retail side of the hobby, it's very much different than what the aquarist consumer sees (which is tragic enough). Large shipments are very common, I often was the intermediate who did many multiple lots of 10,000+ shipments. Even 100,000+ shipments of fish were not out of the norm.

 

 

Now.......I've only just brushed on the commercial/retail freshwater side of the fish industry. The commercial seafood industry (my home town is a seaside fishing port) and what goes on ....... well that's something that we may discuss and canvass peoples views on in another thread. It would be interesting to read peoples thoughts on current practices and their views on sustainability.

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Also when the fish is in a dark place and has had no food for several days, it will just sleep, or at least not move around.  Under those conditions, it's metabolism is slowed so it uses less oxygen.  

Thank you for the valuable information, shakaho.

 

I know fasting is a big part of it turning out successful. When I ship fish I usually fast them for 48 hours prior to putting them in their bags. I do mark my packages "LIVE FISH, PLEASE KEEP AWAY FROM EXTREME TEMPERATURES." I don't know how often this makes a difference, but I know of one instance in which it did. I shipped to a rural area of Minnesota where they only had two day shipping guaranteed, no one day. BUT... it arrived in one day and the people at the post office saw my label and put it on the truck early. I know because they told the girl I was shipping to that it was supposed to go out the next day, but it was put on the truck early because someone didn't want the fish to sit there longer. 

 

I have shipped and received many fish in the mail with very few problems. The only real bad incident was when I had a particularly spikey fish (cichlid type) tear though his bag and empty it, but he survived because he stuck his gills down where the water was. 

It must have been so traumatic for him to be in there, sticking his gills to the water remaining in the packing.

 

I had a fish that was a special Chocolate Oranda Female for my Chocolate Male I had.... She was DOA, she had been shipped and in the middle of trans she released her eggs in the bag.. The water was very yellow and smelled... I felt bad for her....

 

My :twocents: try not to ship a female that is full of eggs :o

 

That is so heartbreaking, Koko. :( Indeed.

 

By the way, your DP made me crack up. Fart zone! LOL. :P

On the topic of ammonia, it is important to understand how fish actually become harmed by it. Fish obviously release ammonia through their waste as well as through their gills. The ammonia in the water isn't actually what harms them. What happens is as the level of ammonia in the waters increases, the fish are less able to release ammonia through their gills, so the level in their body rises.  This will be uncomfortable for them during a short trip, but isn't usually deadly. It's kind of like humans and cold weather. You can stay outside in freezing temps for a shirt time but try sleeping outside during a snowstorm and you may end up dead.

Also, the fact that they can survive these trips is evidence that goldfish are hardy and resilient fish.

That is some information! Thank you!

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Thank you so much for everyone's replies. They are so enriching indeed. I bet if you people collaborated and wrote a book on goldfishes, it'd be the best goldfish text book of all time. :)

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