Fish toilet!I am trying to wean myself off water testing.

When I first had my fish I tested every single day, enthused by the novelty of drip-dropping assorted chemicals and reagents and things into assorted test vials and generally feeling like a special scientist. That little pleasure, while not entirely evaporated, has diminished considerably with familiarity.

I then realised that I didn’t have to test every single day, because I have got to know my fish and understand what is normal behaviour for them. So I can spot if they are acting up – and only test when I think I might need to take some sort of action, or so that I can understand what is going on in the aquarium. I cut down testing to every 3 or 4 days just to keep track of whether my ammonia / nitrite are going in the right direction for the tank to get cycled some time soon, but that was about it.

Now I realise that actually if I can spot when they are acting up and know what works (i.e. a water change), then I don’t really need to test, do I? After all, the other reason for testing – to establish whether my tank is cycling – is kind of secondary and I don’t really need to test frequently to find out whether my levels are going up or down (indeed, I watch the fish to see if they are going up). I will obviously test before considering getting more fish, to make sure the water will be safe, but why bother otherwise?

I don’t plan to get any more fish in the next few weeks, even if my tank completes cycling, because I have two camping trips planned over the next month and don’t want to introduce fish if I’m not going to be here every day to keep an eye on things personally! If I’m not going to get new fish, I don’t need to worry minutely about how the cycling is progressing. So I can relax.

How liberating.

PS The toilet picture is there because it amused me. The fish don’t get flushed – the toilet water is separate from the aquarium water!