Goldfish survive 134 days without food

WELLINGTON: Two goldfish have survived 134 days since a devastating earthquake hit New Zealand without any pet food or electricity to power their tank filter.

The goldfish, named Shaggy and Daphne after characters in the TV show Scooby Doo, were in a 100-litre tank in the reception area at Quantum Chartered Accountants in Christchurch when the earthquake struck, killing 181 people. It was only this month that Quantum workers were allowed back into the building and found the fish alive.

Curator Paul Clarkson at the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California says bacteria may have kept the water clean enough to sustain life and the fish may have eaten algae growing in the tank. And three companion goldfish disappeared without any trace. "Goldfish are very hardy critters," he said.

Then there's the delicate question of their missing companions. There were six goldfish in the tank when the tremor struck. By the time the survivors were found, no trace remained of three of the fish. A fourth was found floating in the tank. Goldfish are, after all, omnivores. The fish looked dull in color but otherwise appeared fine.


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