Customs nab shipment oflive fish sealed without food

4th August 2004, Comments 0 comments

4 August 2004 , HAMBURG - Customs agents in Germany confiscated Wednesday a shipment of thousands of live Chinese minnows sealed inside tiny "individual aquariums" without food. The agents at the port of Hamburg said the consignment consisted of 13,000 sealed glass containers, each about the size and shape of a beer glass. Each was filled with water, plastic plants and two minnows each. Hundreds of the fish had succumbed during the month-long journey from China. Each "aquarium" was hermetically sealed at t

4 August 2004

HAMBURG - Customs agents in Germany confiscated Wednesday a shipment of thousands of live Chinese minnows sealed inside tiny "individual aquariums" without food.

The agents at the port of Hamburg said the consignment consisted of 13,000 sealed glass containers, each about the size and shape of a beer glass. Each was filled with water, plastic plants and two minnows each.

Hundreds of the fish had succumbed during the month-long journey from China. Each "aquarium" was hermetically sealed at the top, allowing the creatures no food or protection from extremes of temperature.

Animal protection officers were summoned to transfer the minnows to the Hamburg Zoological Institute, where they were placed in proper fish tanks pending further investigation.

The 2.5 cm (1 inch) fish, identified as White Cloud Mountain minnows, are native to streams in the White Cloud Mountains of southern China, where they were discovered in the 1930s.

Now believed to be rare in the wild, the pet industry breeds millions of them which retail in aquarium stores for less than EUR two each. Experts recommend keeping them in large numbers in cool tanks not above 15 degrees Celsius. In cramped quarters they succumb to stress, experts say.

It is against German law to transport living creatures without adequate provision for their survival.

DPA

Subject: German news

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