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BLOG: Katte Kimama

  • Writer's pictureTakashi Iwamoto

Fish who taught me about the tap water, the aquarium's progress

Updated: Aug 11, 2022

This time, I will write about what happened to the tap water, where the manager lives, that the fish I was raising taught me.

I wrote this blog thinking that tap water in Japan has been privatized and safety standards have been changed.

When did tap water become dangerous?

12 years since I started raising Parrot Fire Cichlids, they informed me of an abnormality in the tap water

In the first half, the manager's own old story has become long, so please skip it.

This time, there was a problem that almost all the blogs that were written disappeared due to an error. It should have been automatically saved, but it wasn't.

I use WIX, but this is the second time.

The first time was many years ago, when I wrote about going to Zambia for coverage, it disappeared. I didn't rewrite it, so now it's a phantom blog.

I feel like I'm going to go to the middle of the day, but this time I picked myself up and rewrote it.

The content has changed considerably.

Even so, rewriting the same sentence feels heavy.


Even as a child, I was surprised by drugs that can be mixed with tap water

The manager has been keeping fish since he was little, but the beginning was bitter.

I think he had just entered elementary school, but he was a goldfish scooping goldfish at a festival. One of the disappointment prizes that I received without scooping, not scooping. (Manager who was not good at scooping goldfish)

I think there were two goldfishes, including his brother's.

The goldfish brought home is filled with tap water in an aquarium-type insect cage and then released.

After that, if he's ever fished, you know what happens.

When you release a goldfish into an aquarium, it behaves strangely.

The goldfish, which used to swim freely and energetically in its bag, suddenly changed its appearance as soon as it was released into the tank.

It wriggled, writhed, swam around the tank at an alarming speed, weakened suddenly, and died.

At that time, I had no way of knowing that tap water was disinfected with chlorine, and I was shocked even as a child.

Even now, the way the goldfish died at that time remains clearly in my mind.

Shortly afterward, he learned that tap water was chlorinated for disinfection.

He was utterly astonished to find that the drinking water was poisoned enough to cause fish to struggle and die.

Even though I was young, I became afraid to drink tap water.

Well, I immediately forgot and drank normally.

After that, I learned that there was a descaling agent, and after that I kept goldfish without descaling and dying.


Began to keep clear stream fish

When I was in the third grade of elementary school, my father got a 60 cm glass aquarium from somewhere and brought it home.

As a result of this, he decided to keep clear stream fish such as okaiwa and dace instead of goldfish.

Unlike goldfish, clear stream fish have a sense of pulsation and are fun to watch.

In the summer at that time, I often went on a day trip on weekends, and my father took me to a river in Nishitama-gun, Tokyo, about an hour's drive away.

Swimming, fishing, catching aquatic insects, and eating grilled meat.

I remember it being an incredibly fun and fulfilling day that I can't even imagine now.

Even with a large family, including friends from the neighborhood, we went out several times.

Recently, one of my friends, who had been to the river with me, came to see the manager in Nairobi, and we talked about memories of the river at that time.

At that time, there was a beautiful, idyllic rural landscape around the river, a place that could be reached from the city center in less than an hour.

There were many aquatic insects in the river, such as sea squirrels, water praying mantises, water beetles, pine moths, freshwater shrimps and snails.

I caught a lot of freshwater crabs, and I was able to catch a lot of fish such as Oikawa, Dace, Aburahaya, Motsugo, and crucian carp.

I couldn't catch any, but there were a lot of striped loaches and sculpins, and I once caught a catfish.

There was a walnut tree growing by the river, and when the season came, I would pick the walnuts and eat them.

Today, the Ken-O Expressway crosses over the river, and with the development of residential land, the remnants of the beautiful scenery have disappeared.

After 40 years, it may be unavoidable.

About 20 years ago, I went fishing in the same place to find out what kind of fish there were. I could hardly catch the fish that I used to catch often, such as mussels and dace.

What was feared was that a fair percentage of the fish that could be caught were deformed fish with strangely curved spines and oddly shaped gills.

I presume that the cause was probably a toxic substance flowing out from the industrial waste disposal site that was built upstream.

Furthermore, when I searched the bushes along the waterside with a net, I was a little relieved to find that there were still many numae shrimps, but I could only catch numae shrimp, probably due to the deterioration of the water quality.

Aquatic insects such as water worms and sea squirrels were no longer visible.

Biodiversity had become very poor.

Looking at the many deformed fish, I felt that it was a hint of the future of humankind.


Sensitive to odors through raising animals

I kept all the creatures I caught in the river.

I also remember that I caught crayfish in a nearby stream and raised them. When I was in 5th grade, a friend of mine who went to catch crayfish with me slipped in front of me on the way home and fell down! I was very impressed by the fact that it fell to the surface of the water below about the height of an adult.

I remember that at that time, even if I entered a restricted area or fished in a place where fishing was prohibited, almost no one would criticize me.

At home, I kept not only aquatic animals but also insects such as rhinoceros beetles, stag beetles, stag beetles, red beetles, and thrushes, so I had quite a few plastic aquariums at home.

Anyway, I caught everything, kept it, and released it.

Through such experiences, I wonder if I became a wild photographer.

While keeping aquatic creatures like this, I gradually came to be able to distinguish the smell of water. The smell of water when living things are healthy, the smell of water when they are weakening, the smell of water when they are dying, and the smell of water varies depending on the type of living thing.

Through such breeding, the manager himself became very sensitive to the smell of the river and the smell of water.

Whether the difference in odor is due to the amount of dissolved oxygen, the smell of bacteria, aquatic organisms, algae, or the smell of iron, the details are unknown.

Before I knew it, when I smelled the water, the environment with that smell came to mind.

Mountain streams, clear streams, midstream, downstream, lakes, ponds, swamps, gutters, water that has passed through iron water pipes, water pipes that have rusted, water that has been in plastic tanks, water in tanks with overgrown algae, etc. Is it fresh water?

When you smell the water, a specific place comes to mind, such as the smell of water around Mt.

I thought it was a normal sense of smell, but an acquaintance told me that I was a pervert, so maybe it wasn't normal? I think

What actually happened?

By the way, most of them were 1/72 airplane plastic models, which I used to make a lot of bra models at the time.

Lacquer paint was used.

This sensitivity of the nose had become enough to distinguish the smell of paint colors.

This is the old story,

And here's the thing


Parrot Fire Cichlid, an ornamental fish I have had for 12 years

Parrotfire cichlid, female

In Nairobi, where he currently resides, he has two pairs of parrotfire cichlids.

It's been 12 years since I started keeping it.

When I started keeping it, the body length was about 5 cm, but now it has grown to about 20 cm.

An electronic piano is installed next to the aquarium. I play it from time to time, but when I start playing, the cichlids approach me and stare at my fingertips.

This is pretty cute.

The sharp eyeballs move and focus with both eyes, so you can see what you are looking at at a glance, and the expression is quite rich.

The clear-water fish I had in Japan could barely move their eyes, so I couldn't tell what they were looking at, and I didn't feel any facial expressions.

This fish has a very small mouth compared to its body size and takes a long time to eat.

For a long time since I started breeding, the two dogs were extremely shy.

Didn't it always hide and sometimes lie motionless in a narrow gap and die? I was surprised.

Recently, my shyness has completely disappeared, and the aquatic plants that have grown for a while have taken over the taste, or I have eaten most of them. Part of the aquatic plants is isolated in a narrow tank to avoid annihilation.

It is said that this cichlid artificial mating does not breed, but I tried to breed many times before, laying eggs and sprinkling sperm.

It looks like a fertilized egg and I took care of it for a while, but I have never hatched a child safely. The reason is that the egg has been detached from the stone.


fish tank water change

The aquarium used for breeding is 75 cm wide, and uses a Nisso combined bottom filter device brought from Japan.

Change the water about 2-3 times a month.

About 1/5 to 1/3 of the amount is exchanged, and no descaling agent is used, and the splash descaling method is used.

It's a selfish name, but it's a method of removing limescale by blocking the faucet with your finger and letting the water that comes out forcefully hit the wall of the bucket.

If you do it in the bathroom, the room will be filled with the smell of chlorine, so you can feel that the bleaching powder is gone.

I don't know how much chlorine is left in the treated water, but I've never had a problem with fish health, so I've been using this method for a long time.

In order not to shock the fish due to changes in temperature and water quality, water changes are limited to 1/3 at most.

In fact, even if you change more water, it will take longer for the water to clear, so that amount of change may be appropriate for bacteria.


From a certain time, there was an accident in the tap water

It happened in November or December last year.

I change the water in the tank as usual, but after the change, the water became extra cloudy.

Normally, if you change about 1/4 of the water in the aquarium, the bacteria will become active and the water will become clear at once.

After that, the cichlids in the tank gradually lost their energy, and after a few days, one cichlid became so weak that it could not eat food.

This was not good, so I replaced the water in the tank again (about 1/4) with tap water.

Similarly, after thoroughly removing the splash bleach.

Even so, the water in the tank was never clear, and the symptoms of the cichlids were getting worse day by day.

Tail worm disease also occurred, and the gills, which were bright red, turned reddish black.

The fish became so weak that they could hardly eat their food.

Until now, the water that was clear immediately after replacement does not become clear even after several days.

The bacteria that purify the water have been damaged by the replaced water and died.

The problem is tap water! I was convinced.

This is dangerous!


I tried using well water

Convinced that the tap water was bad, I bought well water in my neighborhood and changed the water.

I've been using tap water for a long time (20 years ago) before I had cichlids, but this is the first time something like this has happened.

By the way, the water in the tank looked like it had been in an iron tank with a rusty surface for a long time, and it smelled a little like chemicals.

After replacing about 1/3 of the water in the tank with well water, and repeating this several times after a few days, the situation improved little by little.

The bacteria situation seemed to have deteriorated considerably, so the water didn't clear right away, but slowly the water cleared and the fish recovered little by little.

Two cichlids now full of energy.

Bacteria seem to be breeding well, and when the water is changed, the water becomes clear in no time.

Ella's color also returned to a fairly healthy color.

The smell of the water in the water tank was similar to that of Hamura's weir on the Tama River in Tokyo. Although this changes from day to day.

I don't know if it's short-term, but I'm pretty sure the tap water was or was mixed with something bad.

It's obvious that drinking this kind of water and continuing to use it for meals is not good for your family's health.

I immediately switched to well water for drinking and eating.

Now, even the rice is washed using well water.

Even the chickens I keep are given well water instead of tap water.

If I hadn't kept cichlids, I wouldn't have been able to notice this change in the tap water, and I would have continued to use polluted water all the time, and I would have unknowingly harmed the health of my family.

Japan is also regionally privatizing water supply

Subsequently, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare reviewed the water quality standards.

Isn't it a review or a major relaxation of pesticide regulations?

If you think about it normally, it's a preparation to be mixed with poison from now on.

Bad herbicides, chemicals are sprinkled, and so on.

Or maybe you dare to mix it with tap water?

The darkness in this world seems deep!

There are industries that are so profitable that people's health is compromised.

End your imagination there.

Aside from the detailed reasons, the important thing is how to protect yourself and your loved ones from threats to your health.

I am very grateful for a method like this one where I can get a sense of it.

This time, the fish I was keeping informed me of the looming threat of tap water.

Just like the canary is the keeper of the air, I realized that ornamental fish are the keeper of the water.

Give me more food than that! I got well

Water keeper, ornamental fish that teaches us about such water anomalies. It doesn't have to be an ornamental fish.

In order to protect the health of yourself and your loved ones, we recommend that you try to keep one.

I'm sure they'll be the first to tell you about any changes in tap water.

It may take a little too much time and you need some knowledge.