Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflection?

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scpion
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Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflection?

Post by scpion » Fri Oct 26, 2012 12:21 pm

Hi Everyone!

Before I start, I just wish to say I totally respect the scientific proofs and reasoning behind this myth. But I can only believe what I see.

This thread is to address an age old myth of whether fish will be see their reflection on the glass of their tank. There have been inputs from hobbyist that their fish are showing discomfort or aggression towards their "own reflection" on the side glass. There are also scientific explanation for this "mirror image" to be a reflection/refraction or some sort (I do not mean any disrespect here, I just not too sure of the exact term) and there is really no such image seen by the fish in the tank.

There was a hijacked thread some time ago that had some discussion about this topic here but,.. viewtopic.php?f=5&t=30333&hilit=reflect ... s&start=15. start from page 2.
( I am sure there are tons of them before but this is the one that remembered.) Its quite hilarious, thanks to Bertie.

Anyway, Below is a video of what I did.. I did see a reflection, feel free to debunk this.

Credit- sponge Birdy, Birdy and his tank.

I am not a Troll, I am just pissed..!

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by G S P Freak » Fri Oct 26, 2012 2:19 pm

LMAO, that thread was hilarious... Bertie, you kill me, especially about the part with the bag poking your eye XD, nearly died laughing.
I can see where RTR was coming from now, I honestly didn't realize that there was a myth about fish seeing their reflections, I never gave it much though before, because honestly, it doesn't seem important for the fish I'm caring for, I can understand if you have bettas, but for my puffer, it doesn't matter if he can see his reflection or not. very interesting though, thanks for starting this thread lol!
P.S. Sorry if i misunderstood you RTR, I can understand how you'd get excited about something you've debated before :)
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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by delmarpuff » Fri Oct 26, 2012 3:20 pm

I do believe that fish can see their own reflections, but I think it depends on the thickness of the glass, lighting, and the colors surrounding the tank. Say you have a black background, and a neon tetra, of course the fish will be able to see its reflection, even in low lighting. Though I have not really experienced this at work, and it may be because sea world uses very thick acrylic instead of glass, and they use the suns lighting which is more diverse (with the exception of the reef where there is very low lighting). But just from my own experience at home, mt puffers do see their reflections against the back of their tank. this is all just my opinion though. I liked your test you did, very smart idea to check it out.
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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by scpion » Fri Oct 26, 2012 10:40 pm

Thanks for the input! Though it wasn't quite the answer I was hoping for lol! But after trying to imagine what u would be seeing in there, wow.. I think u have an really AWESOME job! :D
I am not a Troll, I am just pissed..!

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by sgtmyers88 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 11:02 pm

As scientific (or unscientific) as this may sound I believe anything is possible, if the right conditions are met.
WARNING: Puffers are mischievous little blimps with enchanting powers. You may not be content with having just one.

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by scpion » Fri Oct 26, 2012 11:05 pm

BTW, not to be mistaken. Even from that old thread, I never believed its a real mirror clear kind of image. It will be more like faint translucent image. More like looking at a glass shop front when its closed. But clear enough to comb your hair with..
I am not a Troll, I am just pissed..!

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by sgtmyers88 » Sat Oct 27, 2012 1:26 am

Or like a ghost.
WARNING: Puffers are mischievous little blimps with enchanting powers. You may not be content with having just one.

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by Bob » Sat Oct 27, 2012 2:12 am

I "think" the reflection you're seeing is due to looking through the glass and water and seeing a mirror image off the back glass. The same as looking through the corner of the tank and seeing the reflection. I do not "think" the fish see it that way as they are inside. If they just saw a reflection they wouldn't react when someone approaches the tank. Also, I worked a charity "dunk tank" with glass walls and I could see out all sides with no reflection. If your camera is water-proof try the same experiment from inside the tank.

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by scpion » Sat Oct 27, 2012 3:08 am

The video was taken with my camera phone in the water btw..

Anyway I did a more thorough read thru of the last post of the other thread where RTR spoke abt the first surface reflection. The initial question was whether the fish sees it. Some say yes, some no. Then, in that post he mentioned that yes, they sees it but not clear enough to "emotional" react to it. So, its still contradicting in a way. I m on my phone now.. so its a little hard to type all that what I have in mind.
I am not a Troll, I am just pissed..!

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by nzac » Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:19 am

they can see a reflection of sorts, I just went through this on another forum with someone. anywhere there is glass and light, at least on one side or the other of the glass, there can be reflections(not necessarily perfectly clear, but reflections nonetheless).
This person did not believe it was possible because the water deflectes the light making it not possible. He took a glass picture frame into a pool and looked through it at multiple different angles, at certain angles towards or away from the sun there was reflection, in some cases he could see through it just fine, other angles it turned white, at the correct angle there was an image of himself(blurry, but an image).
There are actually 2 spots in my fahakas tank where he can be seen attacking nothing on the back wall occasionally, only those exact spots and only occasionally but he obviously sees something there.

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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by RTR » Sat Oct 27, 2012 9:15 am

No slurs or insults intended, but...

"Scientific" and "I believe" &/or " I think" do not go in the same sentence. "Science" involves "it can be shown that..." or "it has been shown that...". Those are not beliefs or thoughts, they are data. There is a world of difference. Whether or not Galileo actually said "it still moves" he certainy should have thought it, even if admitting it would have gotten him in deep trouble if not tied to stake and burned. Data is data. Not all observations are data. data must be controlled and must be repeatable. Seeing may be "believing", but it is not data. Seeing and believing do not work if you are standing in water and try to spear a fish in the water in which you are standing and do not compensate for refraction. Looking through air then through glass (also retractile) into water and seeing a reflection on a second piece of glass at right angles to the first piece of glass is not physically nearly as simple a situation as spearing a fish (or hitting it with an arrow, or handgun or rifle). sit in front of a tank and watch any fish glass surfing on a side panel. Depending on the room lighting, you may or may not see a reflection of the fish. If the fish moves to rear glass yuou may have a much harder time seeing the reflection oppposit you. Or move youself to the end glass opposite where the fish is surfing and you won't see the reflection on the now directly opposite side panel, but you likely will from the rear glass. It is the angles of refraction of the glass sufaces that determine whether or not you see refections.

Monaco-style tanks take advantage of this to make the whole side walls vanish (to you,in air in front of the tank) but not to the fish in the tank. These effects have the same basis - angles of refraction of glass to transmitted light.

Also, this is why is much harder to net a fish fron a pond in which you standing than from a tank at your eye level.

Angles of refraction are not magic or mystery, they are hard science. You can use them if you wish, or pretend they are magic or mystical, but the are just reality that too many folks do not understand. Science is the study of reality. We do not know it all, actually we only know a little. But what we do knmow we can prove.

HTH
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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by Master of Puffers » Sat Oct 27, 2012 10:07 pm

from my personal observations....many animals..fish, reps and mammals appear to react to what they may see outside thier habitats.

I have seen far too many idiots provoke Siamese fighting fish by putting mirrors next to thier tanks....

AFAIHS..my puffers are intereasted in the movement out of the corner of their eye. I am under the impression that if I approach one of the tanks from one specific direction..I'm recognised as the provider of food..and If i approach from a non standard direction...I'm treated as a curiousity until I'm totally recognised.
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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by bertie 83 » Sun Oct 28, 2012 4:04 pm

I had fun testing this theory,until I nearly lost an eye lol. I too believe they are looking out the tank
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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflection?

Post by hadla » Wed Sep 27, 2017 4:20 pm

XD sorry just needed to bring this up so I can easily find it!
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Re: Side Glass Reflection. Can your fish see its own reflect

Post by alicec28 » Thu Nov 02, 2017 9:27 am

G S P Freak wrote:
Fri Oct 26, 2012 2:19 pm
LMAO, that thread was hilarious... Bertie, you kill me, especially about the part with the bag poking your eye XD, nearly died laughing.
I can see where RTR was coming from now, I honestly didn't realize that there was a myth about fish seeing their reflections, I never gave it much though before, because honestly, it doesn't seem important for the fish I'm caring for assurances obsèques, I can understand if you have bettas, but for my puffer, it doesn't matter if he can see his reflection or not. very interesting though, thanks for starting this thread lol!
P.S. Sorry if i misunderstood you RTR, I can understand how you'd get excited about something you've debated before :)
Maybe you see that in the cartoons. Small fish with silver or gold colors.

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