Timaru’s fish rescue service gets noticed



Dan Lacey's interest in fish is a hobby that has spread to a lifesaving service.

chris tobin / stuff

Dan Lacey’s interest in fish is a hobby that has spread to a lifesaving service.

Interest in Timaru’s one-man fish rescue service has grown, with tanks now taking up space in his home and garage.

Dan Lacey, who works as an employment consultant and is a wedding officiant, decided to pick up the fish several months ago, after approaching pet stores and vets and seeing there was a need.

“Some people move, or there are two and one is dead, or an equipment failure that means people can’t continue, or an inability with the fish getting too big,” Lacey said.

He advertised his service online and received a quick response, he said.

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When given fish, Lacey quarantined them for several weeks.

“We sent some to Wellington this week, a few big ones. It cost $ 60 to send them and the guy paid $ 65 for two fish.

“Goldfish are the most common, but people don’t realize how big they can get. If they have space, they will grow. “

Lacey became interested in fish a few years ago when she was looking for a hobby.

“I had some mental health issues and wanted a hobby to keep me busy.”

These two 700 liter tanks are in the spotlight in Dan Lacey's living room.

chris tobin / stuff

These two 700 liter tanks are in the spotlight in Dan Lacey’s living room.

Another pet was out of the question.

“We already have three cats and two dogs.”

So Lacey hit the fish.

“I started with an aquarium with tadpoles, then I went from frogs to fish.”

Lacey now has a miniature aquarium: a total of 400 fish in 27 cold and tropical water tanks at her home, 12 inside the house and the rest in the garage.

Pride of place are two 700 liter tanks in the living room which he managed to purchase from an Ashburton pet store. Marine and tropical tanks are located in the room next to the living room.

“I enjoy fish and find them relaxing. There is a lot of work to be done to clean the filters and work on the tanks, but I appreciate it.

Angels and Plecos were his favorite fish.

Lacey and his wife Judith have three children – 12-year-old Blayke is still at home.

Each evening the family goes through a routine of feeding the fish, making sure they are getting the correct amounts.

“As a family, we love to observe the life cycle of fish and new fish. Some die, it’s part of nature.

One of the fish that will be relocated by Dan Lacey.

chris tobin / stuff

One of the fish that will be relocated by Dan Lacey.

He also learned something about the psychology of fish – some fish don’t make happy tank mates.

“Fish picks fish. Sometimes when you get new fish they start to pluck other fish. They bite them and bite them on the fins and whiskers.

The “bullies,” as Lacey called them, were confined to their own tanks alone, one of them a cichlid.

“He will probably go elsewhere in New Zealand. He can navigate there [in his tank] until we find the right house.

With tanks in the house and garage, space was at a premium.

However, that didn’t restrict Lacey.

“We’re always open to looking at other tanks, maybe we’ll have a large outdoor tank or a pond.



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