Benny came from the same pet store as my first two bettas, not the one where I got my other goldfish. Sammy had recently been "widowed" when I lost Jackie and he was very lonely. I knew I needed a new tankmate for him, but I didn't want to settle for just any fish. I planned to keep looking until I found one I really liked. There were tons of adorable baby fantails in the pet stores, of course, but they were just too small to live with Sammy. Then I found Benny, who was active, friendly, and about 4" long. Perfect! I hadn't really planned on getting a fish that day, but Benny had to come home with me. After a week's quarantine in the old 10-gallon tank, Benny joined Sammy in his big tank on Wednesday, September 22, 2004.
At first Sammy surprised me by being shy and hiding behind a plant, but eventually curiosity won out and he emerged to check on the new fish. They got along well at first, but then Benny developed a nasty fin-nipping habit. Back into the 10-gallon he went while Sammy's tail healed and Benny grew up a bit. They were re-introduced to each other November 11 and then got along quite well. For one thing, Sammy learned not to put up with Benny bothering him, and would give him a good whack with his tail when he pestered him. ;)
Fergie soon joined the family, and she and Benny became like Sammy's children.
After Sammy passed on, Benny and Fergie did great together. Then they both got sick for some unknown reason, and although Benny survived Fergie did not. Poor Benny was very lonely and quiet until I got him a new friend. Now he and Minnie are inseparable and get along very well--except for Minnie's tendency to bottom-feed in the two square inches of gravel directly underneath Benny. She'll bonk him fiercely to make him move, and sometimes he'll play along, but other time he'll just stay where he is, calmly bottom-feeding while she wiggles herself silly right underneath/behind him. He's too huge for her to push around. ;)
Species: Carassius auratus (a.k.a. goldfish) of the Fantail variety
Size: About 9 inches counting tail
Gender: Male. I've seen tubercles, a.k.a. breeding stars, on his gill covers and pectoral fins.
Hobbies: Swimming backwards, pestering Sammy, bottomfeeding, nibbling algae off the fake plants, patroling the top of the tank near feeding time, letting me drop food right into his mouth
Dislikes: Being hungry
Diet: Same as the others.
Habitat: 37-gallon tank in my dining room.
Tankmates: Sammy (through 2005), Fergie (2004-2006), Minnie (2006-present)
Nicknames: He's Benny-Fish-al (beneficial)! LOL! Or Big Ben, as he's gotten to be quite a monster.
Namesakes: When I brought Benny home I was planning on addressing him as female, so I named him Penny, since (s)he was shiny like a new penny. I soon noticed the tubercles, though, and quickly shifted my thinking to male. Penny became Benny. ;)
Photo Album: Watch Benny grow!