I asked a question recently, Channel Catfish vs “Bala Catfish” … how can I identify which was sold to me? which was edited by another user because I had mentioned the fish were being raised for food (aquaculture). The comment on the edit was "We don't eat our pets", and the human consumption note was removed.

I searched Pets Meta and only found: Where is the line drawn for feeder animals? which only talks about feeding animals to other animals, not to people. I'm going to go off on a hypothetical tangent here and suggest that based on the attitudes and opinions expressed in that question, had I instead mentioned I was raising catfish to feed to a much larger predator (dolphin, killer whale, blue heron, ??? etc), that would somehow be morally different.

If questions about raising fish for food are not acceptable on Pets, then where would I post such questions? There is no agriculture or aquaculture stackexchange, nor is Gardening and Landscaping a proper place for questions about raising animals.

  • The help topics cover this to some degree as well.
    – Joanne C
    Jun 2 '15 at 20:58

This topic was also discussed in What's our position on aquaponics?

Your question (how to tell 2 fish species apart) is on topic here, but some folks find references to eating pets distasteful, so we edit them out. As long as your question is something that would be reasonable for a non-food producer to ask, we allow it here.

Another area to see how we handle past questions is to look at the rabbit breeding questions. Several of those questions are from known or suspected meat breeders, but we allow questions on breeding because that's a normal pet owner activity.

Questions on how to kill, slaughter, and/or prepare aquatic life and mammals would be redirected as appropriate.

  • I pick a SX for my questions to go based on the knowledge pool of the typical users for that SX. I came to Pets with questions about fish that were common to aquariums and ponds because I assumed that the domain knowledge would exist to answer the question. I don't pay attention to (nor care about) the arbitrary moral/ethical bias. It looks like Sustainability is where I should be though.
    – cathode
    Jun 2 '15 at 21:25
  • Additionally I'm only seeing a single user with strong moral/ethical bias against questions like my original one.
    – cathode
    Jun 2 '15 at 21:27
  • @cathode I don't have a strong bias against eating typical pet species, but my area of interest (cats) aren't a species that is typically eaten in the west. Other users who are interested in other species have other experiences, which affects their moral/ethical preferences.
    – Zaralynda
    Jun 2 '15 at 21:31
  • 2
    @cathode additionally, it doesn't add to your question any that the fish will be eaten, the core question is still "what's the difference between X and Y?" In those cases there is no harm in editing out the reference to eating, and there is harm (in the form of turning away users) by leaving it in.
    – Zaralynda
    Jun 2 '15 at 21:34
  • Sure, that's a fair point. I would not normally have even mentioned something like that except I know that many animals have poisonous body parts. Based on global question-asking best practices, I tried to include as much information as I thought would be relevant.
    – cathode
    Jun 2 '15 at 21:37
  • @cathode that's perfectly acceptable! editing isn't a criticism of your question, it's just applying a community standard.
    – Zaralynda
    Jun 3 '15 at 0:29

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