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AquaBabies Poll Page 1999-2001

Last Updated: 4/11/06

These are the poll results for 1999 to 2001.

1. When did you purchase your first AquaBaby?
2. Which species were in your AquaBaby (if you know)?
3. Where did you buy your AquaBaby?
4. At the time of purchasing your AquaBaby, would you consider yourself a novice, intermediate, or advanced aquarist?
5. Why did you decide to buy the AquaBaby?
6. Did any of them die? If so, how long after purchase?
7. Did you upgrade to larger aquariums after this experience or give up fish-keeping all together?
8. Would you buy another AquaBaby?
9. In general, would you say that you were satisfied or dissatisfied with your purchase?

The following is a list of the poll results of AquaBaby owners from 1999 to 2001.

Reply #1 from Jestes on 10/4/99:
1. No answer.
2. No answer, probably not known.
3. Gift from a drugstore (perhaps Bartell Drugs).
4. Novice with no interest in fish.
5. It was a gift.
6. One of three so far in 8 months.
7. No interest in fish.
8. Definitely not.
9. Dissatisfied.

Reply #2 from Cheryl on 1/4/00 (note: see my input on her response below):
1. July 14, 1999.
2. Two guppies and a third unknown fish.
3. A mall stand.
4. Novice but used to have aquariums years ago.
5. Missed having an aquarium and cannot afford one.
6. One died after 3 months, another after 5.5 months, the last still alive after 5.5 months.
7. Stuck with the one aquababy.
8. Yes. Previous aquarium fish died after but a few days or weeks.
9. Very satisfied. "The fish have been lively and a joy to watch. They have given me much pleasure."

Between 7/22/99 and 1/4/00, the above responses were the only ones I got.

I must say about the second respondent that everything is relative. This person had previously had poor luck keeping fish alive in presumably larger aquaria; therefore, she was satisfied with a 5 month live span which to her was long. Guppies normally live 2-3 years though. I certainly agree with her quote on Line 9. I think her experiences would have been even more fulfilling with a real tank (10 gallons or more) with healthy fish. In her case, cost is an issue but AquaBabies cost $20. A 10 gallon tank and 3 fish and nothing else (of course heaters, lids, lights, food, gravel, etc. would be advisable if money is available; this brings the cost of a cheap setup to about $30) costs less than $10. Which is a better bargain?

Reply #3 from Adu on 3/31/00:
1. May 1, 1999.
2. African dwarf frog.
3. Gift from receptionist.
4. Novice.
5. Gift. Had previous 10 gallon tank with dying fish.
6. The frog is still alive.
7. No change.
8. Bought 5 more as gifts to others.
9. "I've never been more satisfied."

Reply #4 from Blaise on 5/12/00:
1. January 1999.
2. 1 zebra danio, 2 neon tetras.
3. From the mall.
4. Novice.
5. It was pretty and said to be low maintenance.
6. All fish are alive.
7. Got a 3 gallon tank for goldfish (Editor's Note: The majority of goldfish experts agree that a single goldfish requires at least 10-20 gallons to grow to its full potential).
8. Yes.
9. Satisfied.

Reply #5 from Jill on 8/20/00:
1. July 1999.
2. One dwarf African frog.
3. Calgary Stampede.
4. Extreme novice.
5. The frog was cute (aren't they!).
6. Frog lived but hid and appeared sick.
7. Four to five months after purchase, moved frog to 10 gallon tank with a few other appropriate fish; fed frog frozen blood worms; later got 77 gallon and 5 gallon aquariums.
8. "Certainly not, after the joys of a real aquarium."
9. "Dissatisfied. It got dirty really fast, and the frog was boring in such a small space, he did nothing. It was actually harder to clean than my 10 gallon, because you had to get bottled water, take the frog out and everything to do it right. And I felt sorry for the poor little guy because the 'tank' was so tiny. After owning two real fish tanks, I see how flawed the idea behind these cubes is. I think my frog only lived because it breathes air."

Reply #6 from Kerry on 9/15/00:
1. August 2000.
2. Two guppies and a snail.
3. Target.
4. Beginner.
5. "They looked interesting.
6. The snail died.
7. Got a larger plastic container and a new snail.
8. Perhaps.
9. Satisfied. "I had an aquarium as a child and all the fish died, so my only fish experience was very disappointing and I would not have repeated it, except that this seemed much simpler."

Reply #7 from Jody on 9/22/00:
1. August 30, 2000.
2. African dwarf frogs.
3. Riverside Tyler Mall.
4. Novice.
5. "Thought they were very cute and would find them fun and peaceful to have on my desk at work."
6. None.
7. Not yet.
8. "I think I would buy from the pet store next time.
9. Satisfied. "I am sad however, to see that the instructions for caring don't match at all to the information I have found out about them. I fear that others will not know as much to research what they bought (like me) and the little babies will die."

Reply #8 from Theresa on 10/14/00:
1. July, 2000.
2. One danio, one white cloud mountain minnow, and one snail.
3. Target.
4. Novice.
5. "They looked so peaceful and the aquarium offered easy care instructions."
6. The danio died three days after purchase.
7. "Yes, I have upgraded to a 5 gallon tank and after research, I think I will purchase a larger tank."
8. "No, I knew nothing about fish keeping but could see that my fish was cramped in the small container."
9. "Dissatisfied. After seeing my white cloud swimming freely in her new aquarium, I wish I would have set up the tank sooner...."

Wow, as you can see below, in January of 2001, I was flooded with seven responses! Only one thought AquaBabies were not great. Also, of those, all but one were novices. Carmen considers herself an advanced aquarist and got the AquaBaby because she did not have a reliable source of electricity. An advanced aquarist who knows proper feeding and cleaning procedures is much more likely to have success keeping animals alive in small containers.

Reply #9 from Samantha on 1/3/01:
1. December, 2000.
2. Don't know.
3. Mall.
4. Novice.
5. It was a gift.
6. They died after 1.5 weeks.
7. Undecided.
8. No.
9. "More than dissatisfied."

Reply #10 from Terry on 1/12/01:
1. February, 2000.
2. Two guppies.
3. Gift.
4. Novice.
5. Gift.
6. One of two died the next day. The other is still alive as of 1/12/01.
7. Did not upgrade.
8. "It was a gift. I would not have bought one in the first place.
9. "I am satisfied. It was a gift from my fiancee. The fish is kind of cute. She is always excited at feeding time."

Reply #11 from Carmen on 1/12/01:

Note that Carmen gave extensive replies to the questions so the following is a summary to save space.

1. November, 2000.
2. Four rosy red minnows and a snail.
3. Cart at Pacific Centre Mall in Vancouver, BC.
4. Intermediate to advanced.
5. Wanted an aquarium but lacked a safe and proper electrical situation so needed a setup without electricity.
6. Three rosy reds died within a month. Three white clouds were given to replace the rosy reds.
7. If electricity problems were not an issue, a conventional aquarium setup would be started.
8. "No, but as I said, I'll try to keep the current one up and running long as possible. I consider it a bit of a challenge.
9. "Somewhere in the middle."

Carmen provided the following information as well with which I agree: "...it_is_possible to maintain a dynamic equilibrium in a smallish aquarium without aeration and filtration or, for that matter, electricity. People did it all the time in the 19th century. However, the aquarium should be very well planted, the number of fish should be much lower than in a typical modern aquarium, and there should be large, fairly frequent water changes....". It is important for me to note that the "smallish" aquarium of the 1800's was typically 10-40 gallons in size and full of lots of plants and maybe a goldfish or two. An AquaBaby in no way compares in quality to such an electricity- free setup of yesteryear as it is much smaller, has many fish (be they small or not), and is rarely maintained with frequent water changes.

Reply #12 from Rachel on 1/16/01:
1. December, 2000.
2. Two white cloud mountain minnows and a brown snail.
3. Kiosk in Blue Water Shopping Centre in England.
4. Novice.
5. Present.
6. Fish are fine (after a month).
7. No answer.
8. "I don't think so."
9. "Satisfied with the purchase because the fish haven't died but obviously very concerned about the negative publicity.

Reply #13 from Kate on 1/17/01:
1. December 1999.
2. One African dwarf frog.
3. Walgreen's drugstore.
4. Novice.
5. Christmas present.
6. "He's still alive!"
7. "No upgrade."
8. "Yes, I'd buy another one.
9. "Satisfied.

Reply # 14 from Emily on 1/18/01:
1. December 1999.
2. Three white cloud mountain minnows.
3. Gift.
4. Novice.
5. Gift, "I asked for it."
6. Still alive.
7. "I have a goldfish bowl and a 10 gallon tank now but the babies are still in their box." (Note from Robyn: Since they are at least 14 months old, the "babies" are fully grown and capable of breeding.)
8. "I won't now because I have a tank but I see no problem with them."
9. "Very satisfied."

Reply #15 from Richard on 1/21/01:
1. December 20, 2000.
2. Two zebra danios and a snail.
3. Target.
4. Novice.
5. Gift.
6. Still alive.
7. No upgrade.
8. "Based on my experience thus far YES."
9. "So far I'm satisifed."

Reply #16 from Samantha on 2/3/01:
1. November 20, 2000.
2. Three unknown fish and a ramshorn snail.
3. Target.
4. Extreme novice.
5. "I wanted a simple set up to keep in my dorm room...."
6. One died a week after purchase while the rest are alive.
7. "Not yet, but I'm going to once I learn more about care.
8. "Yes, if I couldn't have an actual aquarium set up but I don't necessarily approve of them.
9. "I was satisfied with my AquaBaby experience, but after learning more about fish and how bad this can be for them, I don't think that this is the best way to keep fish and should be a temporary or last resort. I do, however, enjoy watching the fish as I'm a prevet student and an animal lover, and they are my only pets allowed to be kept in the dorm. They keep me company, and I love them."

Reply #17 from Leigh Ann and Lauren on 2/22/01:
1. December, 2000.
2. African dwarf frog.
3. Target.
4. Novice.
5. "My daughter had been wanting one as a pet and this seemed easy and she had just enough birthday money for the purchase."
6. The frog died on 2/12/01.
7. "No upgrades, however, had we done that sooner our little frog would still be alive, no doubt."
8. "I wouldn't ever purchase one again. Nor my 8 yr old daughter who wasted her birthday money. We both fully expected to have our frog for the 2-3 yr lifespan spoken of in the brochure."
9. "Dissatisfied. Our frog got sick after we cared for it to the letter the brochure that came with her, so I consulted the web and found new info, however too late. I have called a local exotic pet shop who did not recommend I replace my frog (which Target will do) unless I create a new set up. She (the pet store employee) said she cringed when she saw the Aquababy set ups at Target."

Reply #18 from Billie Jo on 3/29/01:
1. October 9, 2000.
2. Three guppies and one snail.
3. Hallmark store.
4. First-time fish owner.
5. "My sister bought some and told me about them and I thought it would be a good idea to get my 2-year-old son."
6. None have died.
7. Have since bought goldfish and a frog.
8. "Most definitely as soon as the weather is warm enough to order frogs and crabs." (I hope she is not putting frogs and crabs in an AquaBabies tank! Clash of the Titans!)
9. "Definitely satisfied."

Reply #19 from Gail on 4/9/01:
1. March, 2001.
2. Two guppies and one snail.
3. Target.
4. Intermediate.
5. "...I was enthralled and curious."
6. None have died.
7. May get a betta but no plans for a tank.
8. "Absolutely not. As a matter of fact, I've given mine to a more fish-knowledgeable coworker....I found that its small size bothered me as well as all of the negative press...I am not a cruel person and if I have an animal, I want to treat it responsibly. Aside from that, I found myself worrying about the fate of the AquaBabies which remained at Target did someone feed them or change the water? What happens if they all go unsold and the fad passes? How many of the animals perish in shipment? How many of these cubes go home with people who don't take care of them, or as "toys" for small children?...The more I thought about it and did research, the more troubled I became. These cubes are being marketed toward people who want a pet but do not want to do any sort of work toward keeping it. I have a three-month-old baby boy and when he gets older, I want to teach him that all pets, however small, are a tremendous responsibility and that it is important to care for them properly....In retrospect, I'm very sorry that I bought it, and I don't know what I was thinking."
9. "I didn't keep the AquaBabies long enough to know for certain....I just decided that having one didn't feel right to me."

Reply #20 from Teresa on 4/25/01:
1. November, 2000.
2. Rosy red minnows.
3. Target.
4. Novice.
5. "...I thought the enclosed aquarium might allow me to have fish without allowing the cats to eat the fish." (Note from Robyn: All aquariums should have lids to prevent fish from jumping out. These will also keep cats out. My two cats ignore the fish tanks and ponds.)
6. One died 4/25/01.
7. "I haven't decided what to do."
8. "I don't think so...I don't like feeling poorly for critters that can't do anything to change their fate."
9. "I'm ambivalent."

Reply #21 from Laura on 4/29/01:
1. 4/28/01.
2. African dwarf frog.
3. Target.
4. Intermediate.
5. "I won the Science Fair."
6. Not yet, only had one day.
7. None.
8. No.
9. "I am a little satisfied but I think it's cruel to keep the AquaBabies in such horrible cubes...."

Reply #22 from Shawna on 5/4/01:
1. April 12, 2000.
2. Two African dwarf frogs.
3. Regina, Saskatchewan.
4. Intermediate.
5. "To rescue them...."
6. Both died in about a month.
7. "I had always had larger aquariums, I put them into my 20g immediately after quarantine."
8. "Only to rescue it from that terrible existence."
9. "I was very upset that these poor little frogs died in my care. I hadn't had an animal die on me in 3 years, in any of my tanks, and it made no since to why Bonnie and Clyde would just up and die." (Note from Robyn: My turkeys were named Bonnie and Clyde too. Aquatic frogs rarely do well without appropriate live foods like adult brine shrimp and blackworms. They have special needs.)

Reply #23 from Kelly on 5/23/01:
1. February, 2001.
2. One African dwarf frog and a ramshorn snail.
3. Target.
4. Novice.
5. "I got it from my fiancee who took the hint that I wanted a cute froggy to keep me company in my dorm room."
6. Still alive.
7. "I recently bought a bigger tank, a one gallon."
8. "I'm not sure. I feel bad for the ones that are in Target knowing that they don't have anyone to be concerned for them and put them in a larger tank. I want to save them, but I know by buying one it will encourage the company to continue doing this...."
9. "Satisfied with the animals in the tank. Dissatisfied that the little booklet didn't give a whole lot of information and that I had to go on the web and try to find all the information I could to make sure I wouldn't be responsible for killing my frog. I think the company should put the frogs in at least a gallon sized tank and give money to the people who had to do the humane thing and put them in a larger tant. A person shouldn't have to worry about killing their pet because it's cramped in a small place or worry if the tank they are transferring the pet to is a hospitable environment and won't kill it."

Reply #24 from Jeff on 7/13/01:
1. April, 2001.
2. White cloud mountain minnows.
3. Hallmark.
4. Novice.
5. "To add a little atmosphere to my office."
6. Still alive (but in a tank).
7. "I did upgrade to a 30 gallon aquarium."
8. "Hell No!"
9. "I would have to be dissatisfied due to the fact that after doing some research, I found it was cruel to keep the fish in that environment. To my amazement, after placing the fish in the larger aquarium, I saw a marked difference, not only in their behavior, but the size too."

Reply #25 from Sonia on 9/10/01:
1. May 12, 2001.
2. Two danios and one snail.
3. Target.
4. Novice.
5. "I've always loved aquariums and thought it would make a nice addition at work. At first I was reluctant to buy one because it didn't seem right to have fish in such a small space. But I read the pamphlet and I'm sorry to say that I fell for their lies."
6. Snail died and "danios could die any day now."
7. "I'm upgrading to a larger aquarium as soon as I submit this email."
8. "NEVER!"
9. "I am absolutely dissatisfied, disgusted, and distressed over this."

Reply #26 from Steph on 9/19/01:
1. December 2000.
2. Not known (two fish, two snails?).
3. "A stand in the shopping centre in Swindon."
4. Novice but had an aquarium before.
5. Christmas present.
6. Still alive but "they have both lost all their colour and look almost see through, and they have both become very sluggish and rarely move. Not to mention the snails who on various occasions I have thought are dead because they have not moved for days. I have cleaned the tank in the way that the booklet tells me to, but the plant has died and nothing is improving."
7. Not yet.
8. "Do not know, unsure whether I would or not, but I would probably go back to an actual fish tank."
9. "I am quite satisfied with my tank because up til now there have been no problems."

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