Jack Smith

Sales Assistant at Crawley

How long have you been a Maidenhead Aquatics Team Member?

I have been a team member at the Crawley store for 2 years now, I started part time working Saturdays on the 7th October 2017 and became a full time member on the 1st September 2018.

How long have you been keeping fish?

In a way I have been keeping fish since I was born, my parents had a 6 foot tropical aquarium which I grew up with, since then I have always had fish in one way or another.

What was your first aquarium and what fish did you keep in it?

“My” first aquarium was my parent’s 6 foot tropical aquarium which I grew up with, I believe we had dwarf gourami’s, a couple of clown loach, a common pleco, some kuhli loach, green tiger barbs, a large shoal of cardinal tetras and some others which I don

What was it that got you hooked on fishkeeping?

What got me hooked on fishkeeping was my parents aquarium when I was younger, I used to love watching all the fish and asking my parents questions about them. Also, since working at the Crawley store I have become even more hooked into the hobby

What was it that made you decide to turn your fishkeeping hobby into a career?

What made me decide to turn fishkeeping into a career was the fact that I have always loved fish, and since we had moved house when I was 7 I was without a fish tank for 10 years, but I did have a pond, and I wanted to get back into fishkeeping and I also

Which species do you most enjoy keeping and why?

Currently I have 3 main species of fish which I most enjoy, those being Rainbowfish, corydoras and plecos. Corys because there are so many varieties and they have such great personalities (as well as being brilliant mini hoovers which eat sunken food). Pl

Which species was the trickiest or challenging for you to keep and why?

So far I have not really had any species of fish which have been tricky or challenging.

Which species haven’t you had a chance to keep yet but dream of having one day?

Firstly, being based in a shop that mainly focuses on Marine fish I would love one day to own a Marine tank (or two), just because of working in the store I see new species of fish, invertebrates and corals weekly, and every Friday I work there is always

What pearl of wisdom would you give to first-time Fishkeepers?

One pearl of wisdom I would give to first-time fishkeepers would be to go to ask for advice, as well as do your research, whether it be in a fish shop, in books, online forums or even Facebook, but always ask for advice and do research. Another pearl of w

What would be your dream aquarium?

One dream aquarium would definitely be some sort of marine tank, especially a huge (1000Litre or upwards) Reef tank, working at the Crawley store I have seen many customer’s tanks in pictures and have been impressed by them, there is just something specia

What was your most memorable fishkeeping experience?

My most memorable fishkeeping experience would definitely be when I bought my first tank, I got it home and set it up with live plants, bogwood and stones and sat back and thought to myself ‘wow this is awesome’.

What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned since joining Maidenhead Aquatics?

I don’t really think there is one thing I have learnt that is more interesting than everything else I have learnt, to me just learning about fish, plants, marine set ups and ponds have all been interesting. If I had to pick one thing it would be that Empe

What’s your favourite aspect of your work at Maidenhead Aquatics?

My favourite aspect of my work at Maidenhead Aquatics in Crawley would be the team I work with, everyone is friendly and informative and we all get on well. Another favourite aspect would have to be fish delivery days/ marine fish day, because I get to un

What question do customers ask you most often?

I don’t think that there is just one question which customers ask the most often, there are just so many questions which we get asked. One being “what fish goes with what fish?” another being “do they really get that big?” when talking to customers about

What’s your favourite/most useful piece of fishkeeping equipment and why?

One of my favourite and most useful bits of equipment is honestly a sheet of filter wool, not only can it be used in filters as filtration, it can also be used to block small holes in the lids of our stock tanks to prevent jumping, but it can also be used

What’s your top tip for customers taking their first plunge into marine fishkeeping?

My top tip would for sure be to do your research on as much as you can, and to ask in stores for help and advice before doing anything.

Which aquatic habitat, like the Amazon or the Red Sea, would you most like to visit?

Honestly I would love to visit the rio xingu river in Venezuala, as well as the Amazon river, mainly because many of the pleco species and corydoras species are found in these areas.

What’s the best customer you ever had and why?

It is impossible to pick one customer. But my favourite types of customers are new fishkeepers who want to do everything right and they ask for advice and listen to everything, then they come back all the time.

What’s the most rewarding experience you’ve had at Maidenhead Aquatics?

The most rewarding experience would have to be just working for Maidenhead Aquatics as I see so many different types of livestock, and I get to work with great colleagues and help customers.

What species would you recommend for a child’s first aquarium?

There are many different species which I would recommend for a child’s first aquarium, the first would be neon tetras because they stay small so you can have more and they are extremely colourful. Another would be guppies as they are fairly hardy and come

What’s the most unique species you’ve ever cared for at Maidenhead Aquatics?

It would have to be the femininus wrasse as well as the mocha storm clownfish.

Describe the trickiest fishkeeping problem you were ever able to solve for a customer

Quite possibly when customers try to describe what illness their fish have and trying to correctly identify the illness and what to treat it with.

Which of the fish in your store has the most character?

I would say the pygmy/ pea puffers for sure, they are tiny but feisty and scarp over bloodworm and follow you as you walk past their tank.

Do you, or have you had a pond? If so, what is/was the best thing about it?

I do have a pond, it is an outdoor pond housing 3 koi and some goldfish, I obtained this pond from the previous owners of our house as they couldn’t take it with them. The best thing about the pond is that it is low maintenance and quite relaxing to watch

Which wild species do you find the most bizarre, interesting or impressive?

Probably the wild types of betta fish, there are so many types and colours it’s just impressive.

What’s your secret fishkeeping “top tip”?

If you are wanting to use live plants definitely go all in and heavily plant your tank as best as you can, the plants absorb nutrients and nitrate and phosphate and help keep water parameters under control.

What do you think is the future of fishkeeping and what developments would you most like to see?

I can see many of the wild caught species of fish, from freshwater cardinal tetras and shrimps, to many of the marine species being bred and raised in tanks, this is what I would love to see as it would help to reduce the impact on the wild fish numbers,

What’s your best tip for building a pond?

Build it in a shady area and go as big and deep as you can first time.

How many aquariums do you currently keep at home, and what are these?

Currently I have two aquariums at home, a 160 litre rainbowfish community tank, and an 80 litre which contains 1 male betta and 5 females as well as a school of orange Venezuelan corys and a zebra pleco.