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Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Aquarium - 'Katsugyo' bags .. .. portable tanks for live fish carriage !!

I realized a bit late that – ‘do you like fish’ can have different meaning depending on the person to whom it is posed !

Are you attracted to ‘fish’ as pets ? – have you raised aquarium at home ?? – it is stated that  smaller fish have shorter lives. Some have less than a year ! While in their natural environs, they are at the mercy of bigger fishes and other predators including humans, most  domestic fish too,  do not live as long as they could. Improper care and poor environment usually lead to early death in many species.  

An aquarium can range from a small glass bowl to immense public aquaria that house entire ecosystems such as kelp forests. It generally has at  least one transparent side in which water-dwelling plants or animals are kept and displayed. The term, coined by English naturalist Philip Henry Gosse, combines the Latin root aqua, meaning water, with the suffix -arium, meaning "a place for relating to".  For many of us, it is so enchanting to keep looking at fish swimming whether in a pond or in an aquarium.  Fish keeping is a popular hobby which sure would give you lot of mental peace and tranquility.   

the sandy shores of  ‘Marina beach’ known for its  pristine beautiful sandy shores   has a long history, conceived in 1884 and christened by Mountstuart Elphinstone Grant-Duff, the then governor of Madras.  Over the years, lot has changed – the ‘radio beach’ no longer exists – behind the Kannagi statue stood ‘Seerani Arangam’- the Thilagar Thidal place on which so many meetings were held.  Opposite to Presidency College, there was a promenade – a  radio kept on a pedestal, people would gather around to hear ‘maanila seithigal’ – the news in Tamil. There used to be many shops selling sea-shells, conches, and more – and of course lot of food ~from cut mangoes, sugarcane juice, murukku, thenga-manga-pattani-sundal and bajji shops [a particular shop run by an old lady – mami bajji shop  was a great hit]

Of the many missing is the  free water booth maintained by Rajasthani Youth Association, the Mail van that used to collect letters at Marina in the evenings till 06.30 pm, Public library ……………..and….. the aquarium ~not a big one, rather small one – having some 30 odd water tanks and not many exotic fish – have seen star fish, star tortoise and seahorses among other things here.

A few  decades ago, all houses in Triplicane [and other areas like Mylapore, Mambalam, Saidapet] had wells ~ to prevent breeding of mosquitoes, Corporation officials would visit houses and drop some quantity of pesticide in the well. Guppies were bred in temple tanks and other ponds – Corporation official would visit home with an  earthen pond having hundreds of fish – and he would drop a handful of them into the well [everytime, we would take few of them and grow them in Horlicks bottles ! – their tails were attractive]. Interestingly, Guppies would look ugly when viewed from top and beautiful when viewed from the sides of the bottle or tank !

This actually is not an interesting news to ‘aquarium pet’ lovers though it is about an equipment for carefully handling fish (though the intention is far different) – a  new hand-held accessory that doubles up as a portable fish tank is set to launch in Japan. The bonkers new device - known as a 'Katsugyo bag' allows wearers to show off their expensive market-bought fish as they carry it home. The product will launch as soon as it has passed testing.

An Instagram page showcasing the unusual design already as thousands of followers with many asking about the cost. A caption for the handheld tank claims the product is being developed by a company named MA Corporation. The post reads in Japanese:  'Under development - this fish bag, a product that carries fish 'live'.  The portable tank will launch as soon as developers have finished 'verifying' and testing the product with operation checks and the product would enable users carry  around their pet fish or any aquamarine animal bought at a market.  

'Bring the fish you caught and the live fish you bought at the market to your home. We are working to spread live fish.' The handheld fish tank is shaped in a long tube with a transparent middle section to show off the fish with a handle on top and gauge that monitors the oxygen saturation of the water.  Another Instagram post caption reads: 'It is divided into two units of the body, and when you put in fish, you can remove the aquarium, store the fish, then connect it to the main body and turn on the power. 'You can carry the fish, so it is relatively easy to use. Oxygen supply and water temperature maintenance are possible.  

No details were offered of how long the power is expected to last. Users on Twitter were left in stitches at the unusual design and joked they would take their pet fish for a walk in it.  Users were left baffled and amused with by the bizarre design, with one asking if they were a bad fish-owner if they didn't take theirs for a walk.

A translation of 'Katsugyo' refers to a restaurant tank in which live shellfish and lobster are kept in.  .. .. and the intention is to take the fish live and fresh home for .. .. … eating !! 

About a decade and half  or so back, the aquarium at Marina was closed,  may be ravaged by Indian Ocean tsunami – the building in Marina next to swimming pool was  demolished and moved to Zoological Survey of India premises at Foreshore estate. Somehow, I could not visit this as a couple of times found it closed for strange reasons – perhaps its entry timings are more like an office – ‘9 to 5’ and closed on weekends and Govt holidays !!!  - sometime later, Fisheries Minister made an announcement on the floor of the house that Marina would soon have a state-of-art aquarium .. .. obvious, the priorities now is not aquarium.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
16th May 2021. 

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