Fishy tales at Dharmasthala

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Fishy tales at Dharmasthala

The fish incarnation (matsyaavatara) is the first incarnation of Lord Vishnu. The fish aquarium at Dharmasthala in Belthangady taluk is a fitting tribute to the first incarnation of Vishnu. 

Some of the finest specimen of freshwater fish can be found here. The native of Amazon river, piranha, is one of them. Also from the Amazon river is the silver arowana which grows up to four feet. The people of China believe that the wealth of one’s home increases as the fish at home grows.

 This fish has the special ability of knowing the occurrence of natural calamities in advance. The name ruby or rainbow shark of Thailand may suggest that it’s an aggressive species, but they are an excellent community fish. The fins are bright red compared to the black bodies. They grow up to seven inches. Other fish include Japanese koi fish (carp) which grows up to one metre in length and the pale pink Burmese gowrami.

Major drawThe ornamental freshwater flower horn cichlids, a man-made hybrid, first bred by the Malaysians in fresh water is the centre of attraction with its bright colours. According to Feng Shui, this fish is believed to bring luck. It has a colourful body and huge humpy head. This popular fish was created using fishes from the South American cichlid fish family.

The unifying factor of these fish is that most of these fish are either vegetarian or can survive on vegetarian food. For instance, rainbow sharks are not picky herbivorous and omnivorous eaters, but are primarily consumers of algae in the form of tablets, wafers and flakes. Some species of piranhas eat vegetable matter at some stages in their life; they are not strictly carnivorous fish. Other species consume large quantities of seeds.Michael Patrao

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