Lightbulb Fishbowl: Ichabod Update

Lightbulb Fishbowl: Ichabod Update

Hey there folks!

I just wanted to give you a quick update on Ichabod and some things I learned for keeping a fish in a lightbulb fishbowl.

I hung my fishbowl with macrame which has this great nautical look to it, but I really felt like taking him down and putting him back up to feed him was hard on my new friend. If you can hang it somewhere where you don’t have to move it to feed your fish then suspension might still be a good idea. If you don’t have a good place to suspend your fishbowl I suggest standing your lightbulb fishbowl upright on your desk with a bit of wax. If you lean it slightly to one side you’ll increase the water surface area to air ratio and make it easier for your new friend to breathe.

I also suggest a small aquatic plant. It helps condition and oxygenate the water so your fishy can stay healthy. I wish I knew what this kind was called (the awesome lady at the fish store just gave me a bundle). All I do know is that with this particular plant you can break a piece off, float it on the top, and it will keep regenerating itself. Plus Ichabod can snack on it – BONUS!

Oh, and have you ever had “sea monkeys“? Remember how they give you a little “pump” that looks like a tiny turkey baster? Totally use that or something similar (an eye dropper would work) to send some extra oxygen into the water.

I change 30%-40% Ichabod’s water every other day when I change the water for my avocado seeds. At first I was changing the water by pouring a little out and putting in some new. For the same reason that I won’t be hanging him up anymore I’m now suctioning a little bit out and putting in new. You can use whatever you find to use as a pump to suction some of the water out. If you saved the mini-turkey-baster thing from a sea monkey kit then by all means use that! An eye dropper would also work well. I’m using a sterile (never used) plastic syringe from an old science kit.

So, what do you do when it’s time to clean your fishbowl?

First of all I’ve completely transferred Ichabod to the large glass jar where I was keeping his spare water and the rest of the aquatic plants. You will probably want to move your little friend to a similar pre-prepared spot for a good cleaning at least once a week. You can attach a paper towel to the eraser end of an old pencil with rubber bands. Proceed to gently scrub the fish poop grime off the inside. You can also pour a little bit of salt in and swish it around to scour the inside. Make sure to rinse it several times with clean water so you don’t leave any residue for your friend to swim in later.


I’m going to keep him in the jar for awhile until I can figure out a better place for the lightbulb bowl. Although, he seems to be enjoying having more room so much that I may just turn the lightbulb into a terrarium! That seems to be a popular idea for what to do with emptied out lightbulbs.

6 thoughts on “Lightbulb Fishbowl: Ichabod Update

  1. Pingback: Father’s Day DIY Gift Idea: Light Bulb Fishbowl | Rachie Adventures

  2. I know you named Ichabod after Ichtyology, but at first I thought you named the fish after Ichabod Crane, the character in the film Sleepy Hollow? I just wondered! In the latest version of the film the character was played by Johnny Depp.
    What species of fish is Ichabod? My goldfish has just died so I have an empty 200+ litre tank in the living room, I keep threatening to get some spiders but no-one is impressed by that idea lol! I guess I’m really a fish person too, so I’ll stick with them! Thanks Rachel 😉

    • I saw that version! Christopher Walken was a perfect headless horseman! I really like the Washington Irving story in general so I guess my brain process went: “Oh fishy, ichthyologists study fishies, I like ichthyosaurs, but they’re not fishies, icky fishy, icky, icky, icky, Ichabod fishy, Ichabod Crane, headless horseman had a pumpkin head, I like pumpkin pie, how long until Thanksgiving?” – and in that round about way I guess it’s both for ichthyology and Ichabod Crane. Ichabod is a common guppy that would have been sold as food had I not brought him home as a pet – I’m afraid I don’t know a Latin species name. If you have that big a tank you might like Astronotus ocellatus – “Oscars” – they’re beautiful, but kind of aggressive. They will snack on any smaller fish you put in with them. You might know this already, but plecostomus are little fishy miracle workers for big tanks because they eat all the algae off the sides and keep things clean. Don’t get any 8-legged-freaks! Geebuz! I’m anti-8-legged-freak pets.

  3. My brother had some guppies when we were kids but I don’t remember much about them! How great of you to save Ichabod from being fish food, that was a nice thought! I’ve heard of “oscars” but don’t remember anything about them either, hungry little things eh? I’ll probably put my hand in to feed them and the water will boil and turn red with my blood ha ha!
    I liked the movie 8-legged-freaks, have you seen it? You can put your mind at rest though, I wasn’t really serious about buying spiders, I think they would creep me out!
    Oh yes and I do know those little fish which clean the tank, they look like a loach type fish don’t they? Tiny little vacuum cleaners! I didn’t have any of those last time and the algae was a big problem – an endless task! I bought some aquatic plants from a garden centre once and they had water snail eggs on them. As the snails grew they ate the algae but never quite got on top of it, still there was plenty of food for them to eat. They bred and I had snails all over the tank lol! I had to put some of them in the fish pond in the back yard, they made themselves at home!
    Guess what? Piranha is on the TV this weekend so I definitely will not be going in the water lol!!!

    • I’m actually very allergic to bites of the 8-leggers so I’m also very anti-8-leggers in general, but I’m working on overcoming that. Yes! Plecostomus resemble loaches – little sucker fish. If you put one or two in your tank they should take care of the algae – pretty much all they will do is nom on algae all day. Oh water snails! Those sound fun! I had rounded up a bunch of garden snails as pets when I was a kid. The oscars are just this vibrant and orange and black, so they can be attractive fish, but yeah they’re a bit aggressive. If you have a freshwater tank you could always opt for a bunch of little fish. Neon tetras and zebra danios are always nice looking – you could have a whole school of ’em in that size tank!

      • Yes, I had my goldfish from when it was a tiny thing, I had three then and it took me a while to find them sometimes, especially when they were hiding in the plants. Yes, I bet if I got neon’s and zebra’s I would be able to put in quite a lot, they are small aren’t they!
        I did love the water snails, they were cute and lived happily with the fish who never even ate any of the babies! Happy days!
        I can understand your aversion to spiders because of your allergy to them but also because they are creepy-tickley things, they make me shiver too! I was once bitten by a spider but had no ill effects, I was lucky!

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