President's Message by JOSEPH FERDENZI hile the following comment may sound trite, that doesn't detract from its truthfulness: a club is only as good as its members. Over the 78 years of its existence, Greater City has enjoyed the contributions of some outstanding people. On this occasion, I will be writing about two examples of the kind of exemplary dedication which inures to the immense benefit of our Society. Our first fantastic member is none other than Claudia Dickinson. Officially, Claudia is our Membership Chairperson and Speakers Coordinator — two immensely important jobs — and our delegate to the North East Council of Aquarium Societies. She does each task well and with flare. Thanks to her initiatives, every new or returning member gets a membership card, an informational package, and a name tag that are all presented and made in a professional manner that rivals the efforts of any Fortune 500 company. And, beyond even those efforts, she adds the personal touch no corporate giant could match — a sincere greeting, a smile, and interest in our members — a basket of candies, a monthly door prize, and the list seems endless. I've been around the club scene for over 20 years — trust me, no one does it better than Claudia. If that were not enough (and it would be for most other people), Claudia brings the same professionalism and warmth to her duties as Speakers Coordinator. To begin with, she has to find speakers willing to come out to us in the middle of the week, and she has to work within Greater City's austere budget. These limitations would stifle most others, but not Claudia. Using her natural charm and contacts throughout the hobby, she succeeds. This year is just an example — look at the lineup of speakers; some of the best known and most knowledgeable people in the hobby will be making a trek to Queens this year and next to share their know-how with us. And, for each of our speakers, Claudia researches and writes an informative biography — one sure to please its readers and its subject — and creates artistic posters heralding the event. The posters are so well made that every speaker wants to take one home as a souvenir (and they do!). Do you think our speakers are impressed by this? You bet they are, and how wonderfully that reflects on the Society. Oh, and I've left out the best part. It's not that Claudia has nothing else to do. She runs
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
her own successful business, has a loving husband (Brad) to fuss over, a vast family of animal friends to care for, including the fish (of which she is an accomplished breeder), and other duties such as serving on Board of Trustees of the American Cichlid Association. By the way, did I mention that Claudia and Brad live in Montauk? Yes, Montauk — a two and a half hour drive each way to and from Queens. That is devotion. Please, if you haven't done so already, tell Claudia how much you appreciate her efforts. Our next illustrious member is Tom Miglio. Tom is a long-time member of both the Brooklyn Aquarium Society (where he currently holds the position of First Vice-President) and Greater City. Tom is indeed a hobbyist extraordinaire. Over the years, Tom has been one of our most diverse and prolific fish breeders. Name a family of fish, and Tom has bred some member of it — catfish, cichlids, killifish, guppies, bettas, gouramies, tetras, etc. More importantly, Tom is generous with the fruit of his labors; he has been an important contributor to all our fund raising auctions. And, to top off his breeding accomplishments, in recent years, Tom has been a force on the tropical fish show circuit. In the last four shows in which he has participated—Greater City (May), Rhode Island (September), Norwalk (October), New Jersey (October)—Tom has helped their competitiveness tremendously by entering in excess of 30 fish per show (actually, at some, he has had in excess of 40 entries). Anyone who has ever entered fish shows knows that such numbers bespeak a gargantuan effort. Moreover, because he enters these shows under the Greater City banner, we all get to bask in the glow of his accomplishments. Oh...did you think entering the fish is all? Tom enters quantity and quality. At the four shows just mentioned, Tom has carried away a truckload of awards. At Norwalk, he won Reserve of Show, and at New Jersey's highly competitive event (with over 300 entries), Tom was awarded Best of Show! Do you think that creates a "buzz" about our Society? You know it does. Tom has advised me that he will be retiring from the show circuit (to coincide with his well-deserved retirement from his work in the real world). I don't know if anyone will come along to pick up the banner so nobly advanced by Tom. I can only hope. But, in the meantime, the next time you see Tom at one of our meetings, how about offering to shake his hand, and say: "Tom, nice job." Fortunately for us, Claudia and Tom are not alone in their endeavors to further our hobby and our Society's role in that hobby. There are others. I'll write about them as well in some future message.
Lake Tanganyika in Your Home by JOSEPH FERDENZI ake Tanganyika is an immense body of water that sits astride the Rift Valley of eastern Africa. Of the three major lakes within this enormous valley — the other two are Lake Victoria and Lake Malawai — Lake Tanganyika has been judged by most geologists to be the oldest. The age of this lake is also evidenced by a biology that has favored aquarists: it is home to a vast assemblage of fresh water fishes almost as diverse as any to be found in the oceans (indeed, some have likened Lake Tanganyika to an inland "ocean"). Some of these fish, especially the cichlids, have evolved into numerous species suitable for the home aquarium. How do you bring Lake Tanganyika into your house? Well, despite the fact that, with a surface area of 12,700 square miles, it is the eighth largest lake in the world (and larger than entire countries such as Belgium and Haiti), you can represent "Lake Tanganyika" in your home with a modest device: an aquarium depicting one of many of Lake Tanganyika's biotopes. What follows is a discussion of four representative biotopes: rocky outcroppings, bare sandy floor, planted zone, and shell bed.
Common Elements All Lake Tanganyika aquariums should have one thing in common: hard, alkaline water. Measurements taken in Lake Tanganyika have shown pH readings in excess of 9.0! That is a level very difficult to maintain in the home aquarium. Fortunately, such high pH levels are not necessary for the maintenance and breeding of the fish. My experiences have taught me that a pH of 7.0 or higher will serve just as well. Maintaining the pH and hardness at the appropriate levels is relatively easy. Begin by adding salt (sodium chloride) and baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to new water in the following approximate proportions: one teaspoon of salt for every three gallons, and one teaspoon of baking soda for every five gallons. Keep up a regular regimen of water changes (about 20% every month; more, if your tank is heavily stocked), adding the proportionate amount of salts Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
to the newer water. Secondly, outfit the substrate using dolomitic or crushed coral gravel, or, at least, do a 50/50 mix with your favorite gravel. You can also place a filter bag containing dolomite or crushed coral in certain filters (box filters, canister filters, or outside power filters). This combined regimen should ensure trouble-free water parameters for years to come. Caveat: do not use wooden ornaments (driftwood) in your Lake Tanganyika tanks; they leach too much tannic acid to be compatible with the alkaline conditions you are trying to create. Rocky Outcropping This is probably the most popular and widely-known Lake Tanganyika biotope. Of course, no one I know imports rocks from the lake itself. (Can you imagine the shipping costs?) This is hardly a hinderance to creating an authentic looking representation, however. The rocks you choose will depend on the "look" you wish to create, but local stones are more than adequate to the task. You can, of course, create rocky outcroppings using good old-fashioned slate, which is easily purchased in any aquarium shop. If you do that, I advise sticking to one color — I think it just looks better, and creates a more solid backdrop for your colorful fish. Your local shop also has other material you can purchase — lava rock, petrified wood, sculpted coral rock, just to name a few. They all serve the same purpose of providing shelter and a sense of safety for the fish that, in nature, congregate among the rocks in the lake. But, again, another piece of advice: whatever you choose, use only one medium — don't mix, say, petrified wood with coral rock, or it will look hideous. Also, if you're going with rounded rocks, stick with that — don't mix square pieces with round pieces; it just doesn't look good. When I set up my first Lake Tanganyika tank, I wanted to emulate some of the photos I had seen in magazines and books (see additional readings at the end of this article). I had noted that many of the photos depicted large round
boulders sitting atop one another. Naturally, I couldn't use real "boulders," so I decided to use "micro" boulders. I went down to my local seashore and collected large (6 inch diameter) to medium (4 inch diameter) stones. These stones were thoroughly cleaned with a brush and immersed in freshwater for week before use. You have to be careful when collecting stones in the field â€” some may contain harmful metals or other substances. To be on the cautious side, I stick with two common and easily identifiable stones that are safe for aquarium use: quartz and granite. Another tip if you are setting up the rocky outcropping, set up your rocks before adding water and gravel (yes, I said before). There are several reasons for this advice. Most of the fish you will want to keep are cichlids; most cichlids dig. If you prop your rocks on top of the gravel, and the cichlids dig out the gravel from under the rocks, you will get a big fall (think Humpty Dumpty) which will crack the bottom of your glass tank. By setting up the foundation rocks on the bare glass, you will avoid this problem. Also, by setting up your rocks while dry, you can silicone them together (unobtrusively, of course â€” and please wait for the silicone to cure) for added stability. This system has worked well for me, and I've never had a "crack" in 20 years. The kinds of lake fish that will be "happy" with this set-up are very varied. You can select from algae scrapers like Tropheous
duboisi and Tropheous moori, to Lamprologines such as the famous lemon yellow Neolamprologus leleupi, the graceful Neolamprologus brichardi, or the more exotic Neolamprologus buscheri (depicted on our cover). The various Julidochromis species also do very well in such a set-up. The size of your tank depends on the type of fish you decide to keep (and also the size of your rocks!). Larger, gregarious species such as Tropheous will require more room than a small group (five to six) of dwarf fish such as Julidochromis ornatus or transcriptus, which will readily thrive and breed in a modest ten gallon tank. Bare Sand Floor As the title implies, this one is relatively easy to set up: water and sand, the end. Well, it's actually not so simple. Sand is actually too fine for my liking. It will be susceptible to constant stirring by your filter and water changes â€” you certainly don't want a "sand storm" every time you work on your tank. My suggestion is that you actually use gravel that is known in the aquarium trade as grade #1. This is a very fine gravel. In fact, this is the same particle size used as bird grit (and, therefore, it can also be found in stores that sell bird supplies). Fish that may be kept in this type of biotope include cichlids such as Enantiopus melanogenys and Xenotilapia flavipinnis. Also,
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
Four Shows in Four States by TOM MIGLIO
his past year has been a strenuous but rewarding year for me. I had the privilege and honor of representing the Greater City Aquarium Society in all four shows sanctioned by the North East Council (NEC) of Aquarium Societies. The first show was held on May 6-7 at the Queens County Farm Museum in New York. When1 I arrived on the a f t e r n o o n of Friday the 5th to help set up and to bench my fish, other members of Greater City were already there, including the renowned Joe Ferdenzi. Soon after we had finished setting up, Larry Jinks and Chris and Jack Borgese from the North Jersey Aquarium Society arrived to set up their fish. They, along with me, participated in all four shows. When we finished benching our fish we stepped outside and, of course, the discussion was on fish. When I arrived Saturday morning to check on my entries, I was greeted by Mike Sheridan, Lee Finley, and Dr. Wayne Leibel. When the judging started that afternoon, I left to go home to prepare for that evening's award presentation and banquet. The banquet was held at the "Old Glory Tavern." Lee Finley was the keynote speaker, and gave a slide presentation. When the awards (which were replicas of medals from the 1932 Greater City show) were handed out, I received two first place, one second, and one third place medal. Chris Borgese won the Best of Show trophy. The next show was held by Tropical Fish Club of Rhode Island on September 23-24. This was the most i difficult of all the shows I (attended. We had to supply our own water, tanks, air valves, and splitter valves. My good friend Joe Graffagnino (a member of both the Brooklyn Aquarium Society and Greater City) accompanied me on this trip. With over forty entrees, extra
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
water and other supplies, I had to borrow my son's Ford Explorer. After loading everything, we had just enough room for our personal belongings. The trip took almost five hours. We were half way through setting up our fish when Larry, Chris, and Jack form North Jersey Aquarium Society arrived to set up their fish. On Saturday, the judging was done and tanks were marked with the winning entries. On Sunday, awards were handed out prior to the auction. I took one first, eight seconds, and eight third place awards. Larry Jinks received the award for Best of Show. Joe Gaffagnino took first and second place in the Synondontis and third place in the Danio class. One week later, the North East Council show (hosted by the Norwalk Aquarium Society) was held at the Westport Nature Center^ in Connecticut on September 30-October 1. I arrived on Saturday morning with my wife, Carol, who helped me set up my fish. When we finished that afternoon, we headed up to Milford, Connecticut to stay for the night and attend a jai alai game. Sunday morning it was back down to the Nature Center. When we walked into the show room, my wife and I were shocked. I had won eighteen awards â€” five first place, six second place, six third place, and my male betta received the Reserve of Show award. Also, my good friend, Joe Graffagnino, took first place in Synondontis and best Catfish, and first place in Danios. The last and final show .was sponsored by the North /Jersey and Jersey Shore aquarium societies. It was held at the Woodbridge Hilton Hotel in New Jersey. As the old saying goes, save the best for last; and these clubs put on, by far, the best show of all. The packages they distributed, the helping hand they gave me setting up, and the outstanding speaker programs they had were all phenomenal. After setting up my fish on Friday, I got the
TÂŁfl LIST by BERNARD HARRIGAN 111. Don't overlook water movement. Good water movement ensures nutrients are brought to the leaves and organic waste is washed away. It is also helpful in achieving an even water temperature throughout the aquarium. 9. Keep a chemically stable aquarium. Plants don't like quick changes in pH or water hardness. This could cause the plant cell walls to rupture. This leads to what is sometimes called "plant melt-down." 8. Easy on the fertilizer! Use it sparingly when you are first establishing your planted aquarium. Then fertilize infrequently, if at all, after that. Too many nutrients will spur algae growth.
barbs, on the other hand, will just devour your plants. It seems as if the more expensive the plant, the more they love to eat them! 4. Let the light be right. Give your plants twelve hours of full spectrum lighting. A good rule of thumb is 3 watts of light per gallon of water; but plants differ on the level of light they need. Amazon sword plants need more light than anubias. Deeper tanks need more light! 3, Shop with a sharp eye. Make sure the plants you purchase are in good shape. Look at the root structure of the plants. Do the roots look firm and healthy? How are the plants kept in the pet shop? (For example, you might want to avoid plants that are just floating in an unlit tank containing feeder gold fish.)
7. Plant your plants correctly. By burying them up to their leaves, you leave no room for them to grow. Stem plants can be allowed to float, or plant them one stem at a time after stripping off the bottom leaves. Rooted plants should have their crowns above the top of the gravel. Rhizomes should be just below the gravel surface. Bulbs should be planted two-thirds of the way in the gravel.
2. Read about the plant you're going to buy before you buy it. A two foot sword plant will not survive in a ten gallon aquarium. Select true aquatic plants, as bog plants may do well if submerged for short periods of time, but eventually they will rot! 1. You'll get more attractive, healthier and stronger plants if you prune them often.
6, Use great substrate. Mix your gravel sizes and laterite for best root development. Gravel with a grading between 00 and 4 works out best. Do not use glass gravel, sand, or large pebbled gravel.
Remove all plant debris. Remove all dead, dying, or algae encrusted leavesâ€”dividing, thinning, and replanting as necessary. Pruning excess growth stops plants from smothering themselves or other plants.
5. Keep "plant friendly" fish. Goldfish, koi, and many cichlids love to dig up and eat plants. Silver dollars and tin foil Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
Photos and captions of our November meeting by Claudia Dickinson Elliot Oshins lights up the room as he looks forward to reading the newest edition of Modern Aquarium
Eric Abrams and Harry Boutis enjoyed the program and may well be adding some West African Cichlids to their tanks in the near future
Susan and Pat Coushaine have fast become GCAS "regulars"
Joe Graffagnino joining in the fun as auction time approaches
Mike Nelson plans for his new Rineloricaria, acquired from the auction
Speaker Tony Orso reviews West African Cichlids with Steve Stewart, while Carlotti DeJager goes over interesting new imports 12
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
The winning bidder on President Joe Ferdenzi's "Java Moss complete with Killie eggs" is in for a treat!
Elliot Oshins and Steve Chen engage in a lively discussion
Greg Wuest takes time away from the high seas to spend an evening with his fishy friends
Our newest Discus expert, Mark Rubanow, enjoys his first meeting with the GCAS
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
The first is to make sure that every fish that wants a territory can have one. This is impractical for large fish, but quite feasible for fish under four inches. Provide lots of rocks, caves and visual barriers, and limit the population of territorial fish to one fish (or perhaps one mated pair, depending on species) per square foot of bottom area. The second, more common, method of keeping territorial squabbles from getting out of hand is to make sure no one can establish a territory. Decorate the tank as above, with many visual barriers and hiding places. Crowd the tank to the extent that filtration will allow, perhaps 5 to 10 small territorial fish, or 1 to 2 large ones, per square foot. There should be a lot of chasing and display but no serious fights. The worst situation is where most fish have territories and one or two fish do not. These homeless fish will be attacked and driven out of each territory, only to find themselves attacked again as they cross the invisible border. Eventually they will die. Non-territorial fish may fight over status in the same way that territorial ones fight for real estate. Many fish have a pecking order, with the dominant fish of a school chasing and nipping at all the others to remain in charge, and fending off challenges from subordinates who want his/her position. (If this sounds like your company, you should consider another job.) As long as the school is large, no real damage is done. If there are only two or three fish of a status-competitive species, though, the top fish will wear down and eventually kill the subordinates. Further, if a status-seeking fish has no tankmates of its species, it may start harassing non-related fish. And since those fish will be unable to give the submission signals that normally defuse status fights before they do real damage, a "lone wolf may injure or kill them. To prevent this sort of fighting, keep schooling fish in schools â€” a minimum of 4 per species, and more is better. The urge to propagate can cause breeding-related aggression in several ways. Often the first step in attracting a mate is to prepare and defend a spawning site. This can trigger serious territorial conflict. When courting, a pair of fish may test each other's strength. If they are not a good match, the stronger will drive away or kill the weaker one in order to make room for a more suitable mate. Male livebearers will pursue females more or less continuously. While not exactly an "attack," this behavior can exhaust and weaken the female. To prevent this outcome, make sure females outnumber males in platies, mollies and swordtails. (Why not Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
guppies? Because the males' fancy tails slow them down enough to allow the females to get some rest.) Some species fiercely protect their eggs or offspring, terrorizing even much larger tankmates. I once saw a breeding pair of blue rams keep a foot long pacu and several adult discus and angels pinned in the corner of a large tank for over a week. The best way to curb breeding-related aggression is to breed fish in separate tanks. If you forget to inform your fish of this policy and they spawn in your community tank, all you can do is improvise, placing tank dividers or separating fish until peace is restored. Pathological aggression is my term for unexplained aggression among fish that "ought to" get along. Fish don't read fish books, so sometimes they don't know how they're supposed to behave. Sometimes the source of this violence is truly pathological. Injury, illness or mutation can affect a fish's endocrine system or brain, causing behavioral changes. Other times it may be the expression of a normal instinct attempting to respond to an abnormal situation. Everyone in the fish business has had a killer swordtail or a bullying neon tetra returned by a distraught fishkeeper. One difference between keeping live fish and keeping a fish screen saver on your PC is that at some level all living things are unpredictable. This is the source of both our frustration and our wonder, and I would not change it if I could. Keith Langley owns Nautilus Aquarium Shop in Longmont. He can be reached at 303-682-5007 or firstname.lastname@example.org Reprinted from "Volume I; Issue 2 â€” 2nd Quarter 2000" of the Colorado Aquarium Society's Colorado Aquarist. This publication, as well as the publications of other societies with which we exchange publications, is available for loan by any member upon request. See me at any meeting, or call or send me e-mail with your request. Al Priest, Exchange Editor ^rt 6 that time ofI uear aqain when, we O ff wish, each other
oareetinq6 & ofI the 6ea6on,. I I/lay your Joy4 be aeep, may you,? hope6
he hiah, ana mau uou,
qooa health aurinqa thi6 ana everya 6ea6on.
by BERNARD HARRIGAN
THE PLATY he platy, Xiphophorus maculatus, seems like it was designed for the home aquarium. There are no easier to care for, colorful, and interesting fish available. The platy is compactly built, and strongly compressed laterally. Older platies, especially females, tend to grow higher in the back. As a rule, the male is considerably smaller and more slender than the female â€” with adult males generally about 2 inches long and females reaching almost 3 inches in length. Female platies can be confused with a female swordtail. P l a t i e s originally hail from Xiphophorus maculatus Mexico's and Guatemala's eastern slopes (never having been found on the Pacific side of that narrow strip of land). In the wild, the platy is usually a nondescript mixture of brown and yellow, with metallic blue reflections from the rear part of the body. However, almost all of the fish in our aquariums are variations achieved by careful and painstaking selective breeding by man. Some of the most common of these platy variations are coral (bright red all over), wagtail (deeper red with black fins), sunset (half orange fading into yellow), tuxedo (half orange and black abdomen), moon/variatus (iridescent pale blueish-green to violet), and the Mickey Mouse (yellow with a black "Mickey Mouse" pattern on the tail). I
have found them to do a great job of brightening up a drab tank, and their colors contrast well with a lush plant background As in all livebearing fish, male platies are easily distinguished from females by the p r e s e n c e of a gonapodium, an anal fin modified into a point (the female's anal fin is splayed out like a fan, like all her other fins). Male platies spend almost all their time following females around and trying to sneak in a mating session (how typical!). Platies, like many livebearing fish, are fairly easy to b r e e d , and, on occasion, you may notice some tiny drawing by B. Harrigan movement in the gravel and find a pair of eyes staring back at you! Young fry should be siphoned out away from the hungry community tank occupants and raised separately on tiny foods such as baby brine shrimp, rotifers, mosquito midges, drosophila (fruit fly) larvae or daphnia (water fleas). The water should be clear and changed frequently, as babies are more delicate and die of disease and pollution at the drop of a hat, sometimes with no visible symptoms since they are so small. Make sure that the filter has a cover that prevents the tiny fry from getting sucked in. It takes a little over a month before young grow to a size where they can be readmitted into a community tank environment.
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
These fun, schooling fish don't fight, don't tear at plants, eat algae, are very hardy, and are very easily bred. I wouldn't think twice
about recommending this fish to a beginner and the advanced hobbyist a like; and remember, fim fishkeepingl; and remember, fun fish keeping!
NASSAU DISCUS • • • • •
QUALITY DISCUS MANY VARIETIES (call) ALREADY QUARANTINED ALREADY CONDITIONED SOLD DIRECT TO HOBBYISTS ONLY (appointment required)
Mark Rubanow 205 8th Street, Hicksville, NY 11801 (516) 939-0267 or (516) 646-8699 (beeper) email@example.com
Exchange Editors: Send all mail, including exchange publications, for Modern Aquarium, or for the Greater City Aquarium Society to: Alexander A. Priest % Greater City A.S. 1558 McDonald Street Bronx, NY 10461-2208 To contact us via e-mail, send your message or inquiries to GreaterCity@compuserve.com Or, leave us a message on our website at http://ourworld.compuserve.com/homepages/greatercity If you are sending an electronic file (including any article), please save the file as either: (1) .RTF (Rich Text Format); or (2) ASCII (or text); or (3) WordPerfect 5.1 for MS-DOS. Please use an "8 plus 3" file name (that is, no more than 8 letters or numbers, no spaces, and with an (optional) file extension of no more than three letters or numbers). You can send 3.5" (Amiga, Macintosh, MS-DOS/Windows) or 5.25" (CBM, MS-DOS) size disks, either high or low density. If you mail a disk, keep a copy of the file on your hard drive or on another floppy (the Post Office has been known to "cancel" programs on a disk), and include a printed copy, along with information indicating what program you used to create the file. Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
Award Me! A series by "The Undergravel Reporter"
||p s p it e-, I | contrary, .mis ; rie ces:s a rr ly
G r" e a tie r i;i
ecently, I was with a group of friends when someone mentioned that a mutual acquaintance, John, just had a baby. Naturally, someone just had to chime in that this was either a miracle, or that it was John's wife who gave birth. While, every so often an article will appear in an amateur or professional journal to remind us that fish breed themselves, and that aquarists do not breed fish, I still hear aquarists boasting of the fish "they" bred. Oh, I know most of the usual arguments, such as: "the aquarist should get credit for creating the ideal breeding environment," or "if the fish weren't conditioned properly by the aquarist, they wouldn't breed," etc. But then I hear stories offish breeding under conditions that charitably could only be described as "benign neglect." I'm sure you've heard those stories too, such as "I thought everything had died in that tank, so I shut off the filter and stopped feeding it when, two weeks later as I was cleaning it to get it ready for new fish, I moved a rock and found dozens of fry," or "that tank has not had a water change in (you fill in the number) years, yet the fish just keep breeding." Because of the antisocial behavior of some fish towards even members of the opposite sex of its own species, it is true that some planning and forethought by the aquarist is needed to provide for breeding, while not overly endangering the mating pair. It may also be true that adjusting the water's pH, hardness, and/or temperature can serve as a "trigger" for breeding. But think about it, let's say that there were BAP points awarded for human births. Should a hotel manager who sees to it that a clean, quiet, not too hot or too cold room is provided, along with a sumptuous feast served by candlelight in the hotel's restaurant entitled to take credit (that is, get BAP points) if the female half of a male/female couple gives birth nine months after staying in that hotel?
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
While this may be akin to heresy, except for those fish which absolutely require external intervention in the breeding process to prevent total extinction of the species, I see no reason for aquarium societies to award BAP points when other aquaristic accomplishments are not also awarded (for example, maintaining a specific fish or species of fish in good health for a certain number of years). So ingrained in the collective psyche of aquarists is the notion of the breeders award program, that when the North East Council of Aquarium Societies wanted to create a program to encourage people to donate fish to the auctions of NEC society members, it called that program a Breeders Award Program, even though there is no requirement that the fish donated be bred by (or more correctly, in a tank under the care of) the donor aquarist. I've also heard the arguments that breeding fish is good because it reduces loss of native populations, helps to prevent the extinction of existing populations, and promotes good fishkeeping practices. While not saying that these are incorrect, a counter argument could be made that encouraging breeding means that native people that previously depended on catching fish for the hobby will now have to resort to mining, farming, logging, etc., to support themselves, thereby hastening the destruction of the habitat for many fish, driving them even more rapidly to extinction. And, if the demand for wild caught and commercially raised fish significantly decreases, it could reach a point where the catching and/or commercial raising of fish is no longer profitable. Should this occur, only extremely rare (and prohibitively priced) fish will be available commercially. Let's stop giving awards for letting Nature take its course, or for being a piscine voyeur. What about points every year that a certain fish remains alive? What if, instead of Breeders Award Program points, we gave points for every presentation made at a meeting, for every new member recruited, for every article for our publication, for staffing tables at a meeting (membership, publication, refreshments, auction, etc.), for every entry in the bowl show (whether the fish wins or not), for every new advertiser signed up for our publication, etc.? Are you getting the picture? Can you imagine what our society would be like if our members pursued these "Membership Award Points" as vigorously as they do BAP points?
G.C.A.S. HAPPENINGS November's Door Prize: "African Cichlids I, Cichlids of West Africa" (Tetra Press) by Horst Link & Wolfgang Staeck was won by Mike Nelson. December's Door Prize is: "The Complete Aquarium" Welcome New Members: Jakleen Murk;
Welcome Back Renewing Me|pJ3ersf ; Elgianor Gor|liri;
Last Month'ยง.;:0owl Sho^l Wmners: 1) Epic Ate|p|Si -%etta splendens ?)ll>at CousMhe - catfish .,.::?::i:o) Doug Curtin - Gold Swordtail Guppy September P- June 2001 Season totals to date: |: :|y::Pat Coushaine - 13 points ... lifliric Abrams - 5 points ,x-:*::XS-: jjm$) Al & Sue Priest - 3 points .y:;:||T ''*'"" '"':': 4) Doug Curtin - 2 points jp* Hei]|Jigl; meeting times and
Next Meeting : Januapipf
!^ Awards Banquet i! lll|||i||::. Hall, N.Y.
;;;i;i9illct: BAS Events : (718)
Contacts?ll Geot Telephone: (7||^428-7
'"month .gfc;$he IfcontactAr. Nassau CountyJVquarium Society
Long Island-:Y^ju|^|um Society Meets: 8:00 P.M. - M:;ii;ffiยงpi|| month at Holtsville Park and Zoo, Buckley Rd. Holtsville, NY 11801 Contact: Mr. Vinny Kreyling Telephone: (516) 938-4066
'2nd Tuesday of each M. Grouse Post 3211 V.F.W., Rte. 107, Hicksville, NY Contact: Mr. Ken Smith Telephone: (516) 589-0913
North Jersey Aquarium Society
Norwalk Aquarium Society
Meets: 8PM - 3rd Thursday of the month at the American Legion Hall, Nutley, NJ (exit 151 Garden State Pkwy., near Rt. 3) Contact: NJAS Hotline at (201) 332-4415 or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Meets: 8:00 P.M. - 3rd Thursday of each month at the Nature Center for Environmental Activities, Westport, CT Contact: Mrs. Anne Stone Broadmeyer Telephone: (203) 834-2253
Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)
December 2000 volume VII number 10