HISTORY: Historical excursus on the aquarium hobby, Part 1 – from Palaeolithic period to Ancient Egypt

By Natasha Khardina

We know that fishes carved in stone about 50,000 years ago by the Australian aborigines, who have never possessed a written language, represented a didactic language with an underlying significance. The species can still be identified today. For example, the barramundi Lates calcarifer has reflected the considerable respect for that species and was a tribal, family, or personal totem. Their ‘spirit fish’, the spinner dolphin Stenella longirostris (Stenella longirostris Gray, 1828, belongs actually to animals, Class: Mammalia, and not Teleostei, like fishes), was reserved for the leader kurdaitscha, and an unidentifiable rainbowfish species (family Melanotaeniidae) was used for instruction in religious ceremonies. The Aborigines venerated fishes, which they regarded as very special creatures and worthy of protection, but they did not maintain them in captivity (Bleher 2002, 2003)…

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