By Benjamin Cost
The Chinese just can’t seem to get enough when it comes to tampering with goldfish. Who can forget the live goldfish keychains last spring or the goldfish whisperer’s synchronized fish performance which can only be described as “magnetic”? Now these sprite little swimmers, viewed as tokens of wealth in Chinese culture, are being tattooed with symbols said to bestow fortune upon their masters.
Although fish-tatooing has technically been around since 2005, its popularity has spiked dramatically these past two years. The fish currently in question were on display on December 14 at the International Tropical Agricultural Winter Fair held in Haikou, Hainan province. Each fish bore an inked character which, when read all together, said “Wuzhi Mountain Welcomes You”.
And as with any tattoo the process of fish-inking is none too gentle. It’s the result of injecting a special medication which takes six months to form. Or if you simply don’t have the time, it’s possible to use lasers!
Not surprisingly, similar to previous instances of goldfish meddling, marking fish has sparked an outrage among animal rights activists, who label the practice inhumane and unnatural.
Mostly it just seems like poor taste to tattoo an already naturally stunning creature with hokey seasonal greetings.