My daughter likes the Lexington (MA) public library. It has fish. The ground floor has a big fishtank full of various smallish, variously-colored fish. They look kind of like this one.
The children’s room has a similar tank, except it also has a corner always full of little tiny fish — baby fish barely larger than punctuation, swarming in a corner, so many it seems the fishtank will be any day now overrun as they grow.
Today when I was there, there was a guy feeding the fish. It turns out the library subcontracts the fish; he works for a company that handles big fishtanks for corporate offices and so forth. I asked him what happens with all the baby fish; he said, to my surprise, most of them stay right in that tank. (Maybe baby fish mortality is very high?) But sometimes he will transfer them to tanks elsewhere in the Minuteman library system; Wellesley has some of them now.
That’s right: consortial fish.