I bought a beautiful male bristlenose plec, about 4 inches long, a few days ago to sort out my algae problem, which he has done admirably. I also bought more live plants and have to say the whole tank is looking really healthy now and the fish seem a lot perkier. But WHERE is Uncle Spiker hiding? I know he's in there but I have that many hiding places he just must be out of view.
As an aside, I WON'T be returning to the shop where I bought him from. The idiot salesman was showing off, picking up the bigger bristlenoses by the tail - then he managed to let one leap out of his hand it hit the floor really hard. I was quite shocked and he did apologise but I thought it's not me who needs the bloody apology! (He put it back in the tank and it immediately swam under some bogwood). If I do go back there I certainly won't want serving by him.
His manager was there and saw it, which I why I think he was a bit contrite. Bloody idiot. It's made me think a little bit more about the shop. The tanks do look clean and well maintained, and they have a beautiful arowana in an 8 foot tank, but some things make me a bit uncomfortable. For instance the betts are kept individually in these minute bubble things, which I think are all hooked up to a water flow system thing. But they barely have room to turn around; let alone swim back and forth. Many of them look very ragged and droopy.
Also, they have several very big fish: Jack Dempseys, Oscars etc. Obviously these are going to be hard to sell, but again, they are being kept in very small tanks. Is this acceptable? Maybe I'm overthinking, but I do feel sorry for them when I go in there.
On a brighter note, Uncle Spiker is alive and well. He is actually the ugliest fish I have EVER seen, (in a good way!) but he's so sweet!
Aquatic store tanks are temporary so they don't need to be big enough to house adult fish comfortably (most LFS fish are juveniles) but the fish should at least be able to turn around and swim up and down a bit.
I got thrown out of a fish shop once for complaining about the way staff handled fish (and also for pointing out that some of the fish that were on sale were really ill), some shops just don't give a shit. Not sure if the councils do either. Practical Fishkeeping might be worth a go.