New dyed tropical fish on sale


Editor's Picks
Practical Fishkeeping Readers' Poll 2023
Fishkeeping News Post
Readers' Poll 2023
07 August 2023
Fishkeeping News Post
Countdown for Finest Fest 2023
20 April 2023
Fishkeeping News Post
Pacific Garbage Patch becomes its own ecosystem
20 April 2023
Fishkeeping News Post
Newly described snails may already be extinct
20 April 2023

A Practical Fishkeeping reader has reported the sale of another new type of dyed fish on sale at an aquatic centre in the UK.

Reader Karen Gray contacted the magazine recently to let us know that she'd seen some hybrid Parrot cichlids that appear to have been dyed in several places on sale at a garden centre aquatic outlet in North Lincolnshire.

Says Karen: "I was browsing around the aquarium department of my local garden centre today when I came across the most horribly and deliberately disfigured fish I have ever seen.

"Five large white Parrot fish were swimming around a tank, each of them had a thick red and blue stripe "tattooed" along their flanks and, even more grossly, the area around their mouths had been tattoed red in a grotesque parody of lipstick. "I may sound melodramatic but I found the sight of these fish extremely upsetting. Abuse like this should be illegal."As Karen's photograph above shows, the fish indeed to appear to have been physically coloured in some way on their flanks, caudal fin and lips.

Practical Fishkeeping suspects that the fishes are produced using a similar technique to that used to mark the Kaleidoscope or Polka dot Osphronemus goramy which recently went on sale in Essex.

The method has also been used to "paint" words and company logos on the flanks of fish. Others have vertical bars painted on the flanks to make their colouration resemble that of naturally occurring species such as the Convict cichlid, Cryptoheros nigrofasciatus.

The artificial colouring of fish has serious health and welfare implications. Pic: Karen Gray

Unfortunately, some naiive dealers are under the mistaken impression that some of these fishes are genetically modified, which is not the case. These fishes are artificially coloured, however, the exact method used for administering the pigment has never been confirmed by the suppliers.

The store stocking the fish is not listed on our Fish Shop Finder and has not signed our pledge not to stock dyed fish.

Have your saySince the late 1990s, we have been running a successful campaign which asks stores to sign a pledge stating that they will not stock fish that have been artificially coloured with dyes. The pledge has been signed by 70% of the UK's aquatic stores, but recently the number of artificially coloured fish on sale in the shops has been on the rise again.

For more details on the Dyed Fish Campaign and for information on how you can get your local shop to sign up, please check out the campaign section .

Got an opinion on the sale of dyed fish? Why not read our recent blog post on this subject and leave us your comments?