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Watching fishes swim is something of a hobby for some people, but did you know that it also has at least one positive practical effect? Scientists have found that this seemingly simple pastime has a calming effect on people, particularly if the aquarium they are watching is rich in species. A study done at the National Marine Aquarium in Plymouth, United Kingdom reveals that visitors experienced significant reductions in blood pressure and heart rate within five minutes of viewing a marine life display. In part, this can explain the allure of keeping a pet fish and visiting aquariums and zoos that house these graceful creatures.
Keeping a pet fish in an aquarium or pond is a good way to have easy access to this calming effect. Having an aquarium at home means you can just plop down on your sofa and watch your fish calmly swimming in front of you as you try to relax. Aside from keeping fish in your home, there are other ways to watch fishes swim, especially if you’re going on a holiday. Here are some activities that will give you an unobstructed view of marine life.
- Scuba diving. Who said that watching fishes swim is a boring hobby? For people who like going beyond their comfort zone and diving head-first into adventure, fish-watching can be coupled with scuba diving. This hobby allows people to develop new skills, explore new places, and observe fishes in their natural habitat. There are plenty of places where you can scuba dive in the Philippines. Island beach resorts in Batangas, for example, can serve as a convenient jump off point for a scuba diving trip.
- Snorkeling. For those who are not completely comfortable with exploring watery depths, snorkeling is a convenient option. This activity is cheaper than scuba diving in terms of equipment. You can even rent a snorkeling mask, water shoes, or fins from a diving resort, and it’s quite easy to get boats that can take you to snorkeling spots. Snorkeling can be incorporated with a regular beach holiday, and it’s an activity that you can enjoy with the rest of the family.
- Glass-bottom boat paddling. The green-blue waters of the sea can be a bit intimidating for many people, so it’s natural for some fish-viewers to have second thoughts about taking a dip in the water. This, however, isn’t a big problem, as you can rent a glass-bottom boat where you can observe fishes without necessarily getting wet. A glass-bottom boat is partially made of glass or other transparent material, offering a glimpse into the waters below. Using it, you can see fishes, corals, and other marine creatures that live and swim within a certain depth.
- Visit a big aquarium. You don’t have to visit a beach or shore to see fishes. If traveling far from home is not up your alley, then you can head to a zoo, park, or public space that houses an aquarium. This is a different experience compared to observing fishes in their natural habitat; nevertheless, many public and commercial aquariums take efforts to make the fishes’ habitat as close to nature as possible. You simply have to walk in and pay a fee—no need for complicated equipment, for special skills, or to get wet.
Keeping a pet fish—or any pet, for that matter—is a big responsibility. You need to have enough space and other resources to keep your pet healthy and happy, and you can’t just head out of town without asking someone to take over pet-sitting duties for you. If having a pet is not a good fit for your chosen lifestyle, then check out these new activities and enjoy the benefits of fish watching while also expanding your horizons and meeting new people.