Amid the hidden cul-de-sacs and labyrinthine paths of Fu Tei Au lie a well-maintained pond house. Mrs. Tang, owner of the place, ran a large-scale fish farming business during the ‘60s and the ‘70s. After failing to operate the poultry farm, her family switched to ornamental fish farming to make a living. Up to hundreds and thousands of tropical fish like cardinal tetras were bred in stacked fish tanks, and would be shipped to and sold in Southeast Asia. Fast-forward to the ‘70s was when goldfish culture thrived. Over a thousand square feet of land was divided into numerous fish ponds in the backyard of Tang’s house. Aside from routine water changing and algae scrubbing, it was also important to net over the ponds in order to keep predators out. Species such as oranda, swordtails, black moor, and pearlscale were properly kept and cared for before they were distributed to pet fish vendors in Tung Choi Street (aka Goldfish Street). Due to water contamination and dwindled demands, the Tang’s eventually closed down their family business. A lot of glass aquariums and equipment can still be found under the wooden sheds where defunct fish farm has now turned into a storage place reminiscent of the old days. Longan and mango trees are sparsely planted over the vast empty ponds as if a fruit garden, instilling the place with renewed domestic purposes.
Ms. Tang and her family have been resident in Fu Tei Au since several decades ago. They ran a family business of fish farming throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s. Most of the fish were sold to the Southeast Asia where demand was high.
More than 20 fish ponds were in place at the backyard for the business, where it has turned into a garden filled with longan and mango trees.
Squatter structures of Ms. Tang’s residence.