Saturday, January 22, 2011

A tale of two fish

About three years ago I bought a fish tank, two fish, and a snail for my classroom.  We were going to learn all about ecosystems – yay!  The kids named the fish Bruce and Sharkbait (after the shark and fish in “Finding Nemo”).  The two lived up to their names after Bruce (named after the shark) ate poor little Sharkbait after a couple of weeks.  Great lesson, huh?  I blamed the cannibalistic activities on the fact that Sharkbait was never really a healthy little fish and I figured he died of natural causes and then Bruce ate him.  Oh, the snail died too….
Bruce isn’t the smartest fish in the pond.  He got himself stuck in his coral tank beautification project, which forced it to be condemned and removed.  He then swam right up beside the filter and got stuck.  Idiot.  I was constantly freeing this stupid little fish from odd places.  Who would have thought that a fish would get that turned around in a one room home.
Against the naysayers who said Bruce was a cold blooded killer, I bought him some new and improved digs along with a tank-mate.  New fish doesn’t quite have a name yet (I didn’t want to become too attached in case I should have named him “Snack”).  So I just call him “New Fish”.  After putting them into their new home, I immediately figured New Fish was the special fish.  I know that Bruce wasn’t  that bright to begin with, but poor New Fish seemed to have some extra difficulties.  He can’t swim.  He just wiggles his little body and ends up doing flips in the water.  He goes upside down, backwards, and will even get so turned around that he just stops and floats belly up until his little mind can figure out where to go.  Unfortunately, Bruce immediately figured out that New Fish had a swimming impairment and turned into a bully.  Bruce would poke and run into New Fish with zeal.  He also nipped at New Fish’s little tail…which didn’t help with the swimming issues at all.
Things seem to have settled down in fish world.  Bruce will still nose New Fish out of the way…and New Fish still swims like a drunken sailor…but  I no longer fear New Fish turning into fish food. 
Leave it to the special education teacher to find two special education fish.        


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