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What to do with unwanted, sick or dead fishes

Excess live fishes can be shared with other aquarists by trading, selling at club auctions or to pet shops. Many aquarists will be glad to accept gifts of unwanted fishes from time to time.

Fishes may be painlessly euthanized by putting them in a plastic bag of water and placing the bag in the freezer. Alternatively, carbon dioxide from carbonated water or Alkaseltzer may be used to kill unwanted fishes. The freezer is a good place to store fish waiting for disposal. Dead fish should then be disposed of by putting them out for your regular garbage collection, or they may be buried or composted. Neither live nor dead fishes should be introduced into waters via the sewage system or otherwise.

For more information, see Don't Set Your Pets Free

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