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Ribeye the Fish

Glub, Glub, Dead.

10/6/2011 3:26 PM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

Ribeye the Fish -- once known as "The Snarkiest Fish in the Z" -- has died ... TMZ has learned.

Sources close to the situation tell us ... one of the TMZ staffers found Ribeye floating in his tank ... unresponsive to various taps on the glass.

The fish -- only a few months old -- was given a burial at sea ... via the toilet in the men's bathroom.

Harvey Levin released a statement saying, "He was a good fish ... he will be missed."

Harvey's asst. Tyler adds, "Not much of a swimmer though." R.I.P.



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ok, so i'm a 62 yr. old woman who has been keeping up with tmz daily since it started. this one really cracked me up. you guys are great. keep up the good work.

1114 days ago


Now I believe it when you say he's planking Harvey

1114 days ago

Carl Steinmetz    

Harvey, it looks like you need to hire a skilled fishkeeper for your newsroom. I would be glad to offer my services to you. I can keep you fish alive for years. E-mail me back.

1114 days ago


With Steve Jobs we at least knew he was gravely ill. But Ribeye??? Noooo!!! "God help us Jesus, god and baby Jesus help us"!

1114 days ago


I understand that many find this a joke. I get that but I don't agree with it.

My first betta was a gift from someone I'd traveled across the country to meet. In my hotel room was a HUGE bowl of chocolate kisses, and... a fish. : ). A beautiful betta. I eventually had to return to the other coast, and my betta flew with me.

My betta's home for the next few years was right above my computer in my home office. He reacted when I sat down or gave him attention - he was my office mate...

Going through a really nasty divorce at the time (legally separated when meeting my best friend and betta), I had to move, and recall... exhausted... leaving with the last load of stuff in my home - my betta in a tall glass, secured between my knees. He lived 5 years and was buried with solemnity.

From my experience with fish (we have 2 koi ponds and a fish tank), bettas are not only one of the most hearty, low-maintenance pet/companions to ever exist, but they rise above others in that they react and almost seem to communicate. My boy got excited when I was around (and no, I didn't try to get him to "fight" I think that's stressful and cruel).

In the right sized bowl (the person who puts them in bottles is cruel and uninformed as they are air-breathing and surface area is essential), they need nothing but minimal food and water changes done properly. They don't need lights and filters.

Where did you get Ribeye from? Did you change his water gradually or shock him w/a new environment? Did you have the righ*****er treatment (depending on the water) for bettas or a way to test his water? Did you change his water gradually? Was he super active with un-torn fins when you got him?

Lastly... Harvey: I know you eat fish still (and struggle with this), but you are largely someone who seems to have serious problems with animal cruelty/misuse/etc.

Betta's have strong personalities and are SO hearty and easy to keep as companions, I can't help but be curious as to whether you can square the flippancy with this story with your very public views. Did you get to know Ribeye? My betta was one of the best beings I've ever enjoyed being around.

Either something contaminated his tank (he was male, females are plain with small fins), shocked him with drastic water changes or he was sick when you got him.

Bettas deserve better than the toilet as well.

Please don't get another betta until you know how to care for them, and believe me - it is NOT HARD. Wonderful as pet companions. : )

1114 days ago


Doesn't anyone at TMZ know how to care for a fish? Bettas can live for years and are really low maintenance.

1114 days ago


Fish in a tiny bowel at work are doomed to die ! Truly animal cruelty on Harvey's part. I bet he starved on the weekends, the water wasn't properly changed let alone kept at the correct temperature. Hope Harvey never has kids.

1114 days ago


Harvey: please try to square this on the next TMZ Live with what you espouse regularly. I'm not saying bettas should not be 'pets' (they're like little fish shaped dogs in the way they interact and I think both betta and human benefit for the experience - seems to be true especially for bettas who live longest).

Goldfish, even, are more than meet the eye - they can recognize people, voices and faces even after absences.

My daughter works at a large pet store and used to deal with the fish department. Someone came in to buy 'feeder' fish - 17-28 cent goldfish bought in bulk to feed other pets. She scooped the fish up and as she was bagging them, she told the customer, "I'm sorry, I can't sell you this one." She brought him home... I fell in love - I'd never seen such personality and recognition in a goldfish... he's in the front pond now because I didn't have a filtered tank for him and had to do uber maintenance when he first came home and lived on my bed stand for a short while.

4-5 years ago, I bought another puny goldfish 'feeder' fish (25 cents at most)... who grew and grew... to be the monster of the koi pond - quite fat and about 12" long nose to tail minimum. The bloody GB heron got him - he was so much bigger than the koi... just goes to show you don't need to spend $$ on fancy fish. Miss him the most.

1114 days ago

Jennifer A Gorman    

Sorry for you loss Harvey...He will be missed..R.I.P Ribeye

1114 days ago


Ribeye was "only a few months old" or you only HAD him for a few months? Not sure there is anywhere to buy a betta with a birth date on the little 'cole-slaw' containers they stack them in (ugh).

Whoever bought ribeye hopefully spent a decent amount of time with the bettas - seeing if they are lethargic, aggressive or healthfully lively, reacting to being moved but not freaking non-stop... seeing if there is any odd detritus in their little container, if their fins are intact and healthy, if they are free from any filmy look, clear eyes, body symmetry, water clarity.

There is so much expert info online - and once you learn about them, these are one of the best, easiest, least expensive, most satisfying and interactive pets one can have.
When bettas die, something went seriously wrong because they are among the most resilient creatures... unfortunately, this makes people think they can put them in flower vases and other odd/cruel environments... ugh.

1114 days ago


Okay, clearly I'm a betta fan... so, enough (or too much - I get passionate on certain things) said.

Goodnight all! : )

1114 days ago


Seriously whoever took the pic needs an iPhone 4 ASAP! That pic is so blurred it hurts my eyes!! Lol >.

1114 days ago



1114 days ago


Poor lil' Ribeye,
Time to say goodbye.
Without you, I
think cats will die.


1114 days ago


This was a shameful and tragic event that TMZ now chooses to make sport of. First of all, the betta was NOT a few months old. A betta of this size and fin definition was probably at least a year old. Betta's can live 6 years or longer with proper care. He had managed to survive for the first year of his life under less than admirable conditions because of the way breeders treat their bettas, but then only for a few months at TMZ. What does this tell you about the care he received there? Harvey should look into the care of any pet before he purchases it and make sure he is willing to give it the proper care it needs and deserves. The tiny, unfiltered tank was horrid and I doubt much thought was given to Ribeye's diet as well. I also doub*****er changes were handled properly. As a moderator on a betta forum, we promote education and proper care of bettas. Information is easy to come by if you are willing to invest the time. And no, I am not a member of PETA. Just one who loves and enjoys these beautiful fish and is horrified by the lack of care Ribeye was given while at TMZ. Rest in peace, little guy.

1114 days ago
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