Modern Aquarium June 2007

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AQUARIUM ON THE COVER The fish on our cover this month is Acarichthys heckelii (a.k.a. the ThreadFinned Acara). It just happens to be on the cover of Aquarium Care of Cichlids, that just happens to be in the hands of its author, Greater City’s own Claudia Dickinson. Read more about this book in the award winning “Wet Leaves” column, and more about cichlids in general in this (mostly) cichlid-themed issue. Photo by Brad Dickinson GREATER CITY AQUARIUM SOCIETY Board Members President . . . . . . . . . . . Joseph Ferdenzi Vice-President . . . . . . . Mark Soberman Treasurer . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jack Traub Corres. Secretary . . . . . Warren Feuer & Sharon Barnett Recording Secretary . . . . Edward Vukich Members At Large Pete D'Orio Jason Kerner Carlotti De Jager Ben Haus Leonard Ramroop Emma Haus Artie Friedman Committee Chairs Breeder Award . . . . . Warren Feuer and Mark Soberman Early Arrivals . . . . . . . . . . . . . Al Grusell F.A.A.S. Delegate . . . . . Alexander Priest Members/Programs . Claudia Dickinson N.E.C. Delegate . . . . Claudia Dickinson MODERN AQUARIUM Editor in Chief . . . . . Alexander A. Priest Associate Editors . . . . Susan Priest and Claudia Dickinson Copy Editors . . . . . . . . . . Sharon Barnett Dan Radebaugh Exchange Editors . . . Stephen Sica and Donna Sosna Sica Photo/Layout Editor . . . . . Jason Kerner Advertising Mgr. . . . . . . Mark Soberman Executive Editor . . . . . . Joseph Ferdenzi

Series III

Vol. XIV, No. 4 June, 2007

FEATURES Editor’s Babblenest . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 President’s Message . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Wet Leaves (Book Review Column) . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Spotlight on Plants . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Members Night - A Galaxy of Stars . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Adventures on the Rio Negro - Part 1 . . . . . . . . . . 10 The Contrary Cichlid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 The Good Ole Days - Or Were They? . . . . . . . . . . . 17 A Fishkeeper’s Story . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Something Betta(er...Better) This Way Comes! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Looking Through The Lens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Fish Bytes (Exchanges and more) . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 The Seahorse Chronicles: Another Five Questions & Answers . . . . . . . . . 24 Amusing Aquarium (cartoon) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Fishkeepers Anonymous . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 InterFish Net (Internet column) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 A Good Idea... At The Time . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 G.C.A.S. Happenings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Fin Fun (Puzzle Page) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Articles submitted for consideration in MODERN AQUARIUM must be received no later than the 10th day of the month, three months prior to the month of publication. Copyright 2007 by the Greater City Aquarium Society Inc., a not-for-profit New York State corporation. All rights reserved. Not-for-profit aquarium societies are hereby granted permission to reproduce articles and illustrations from this publication, unless the article indicates that the copyrights have been retained by the author, and provided reprints indicate source and two copies of the publication are sent to the Exchange Editor of this magazine. Any other reproduction or commercial use of the material in this publication is prohibited without express written prior permission. The Greater City Aquarium Society meets every month, except during January and February. Members receive notice of meetings in the mail. For more information, contact: Joe Ferdenzi (516)484-0944. Find out more, or leave us a message, at our Internet Home Page at: or

The Editor’s Babblenest

by ALEXANDER A. PRIEST ran out of blackworms. Since I have some fish that eat exclusively blackworms (it took me a while to get my Leopard Ctenopomas to accept worms instead of live fish), I needed a “worm fix” immediately, and the store I usually get them from did not get in its scheduled delivery. So, I went to a local branch of one of the pet “chain stores,” which just happens to be where one of our GCAS members works. As GCAS member Mario Bengcion saw me enter the store, he said, “W e have Claudia’s book.” No further explanation was needed, I knew “Claudia’s Book” meant Aquarium Care of Cichlids, authored by the GCAS Membership and Programs chairperson (and Editor of the American Cichlid Association’s Buntbarsche Bulletin), Claudia Dickinson. Of course, we (that is my wife, Susan, and I) already had our copy — from an advance pre-publication order through Since Susan writes our book review column, “W et Leaves,” including her review of “Claudia’s book” in an issue of Modern Aquarium, along with several cichlid-related articles our generous members were kind enough to provide, was what generated the issue you are now reading. At least during my tenure as Editor of this magazine, no Greater City member has had a book published. Yes, many GCAS members have had articles published in national publications (I understand that a few articles I wrote were even



reprinted in the journal of the Internationale Gemeinschaft für Labyrinthfische — the German anabantoid association); but to have a published aquarium book author in our midst is something very special, and I hope you agree. It is an editor’s dream come true when, one by one, members approach with a disc, an envelope, a handwritten loose-leaf page, or an e-mail, each offering a portion of their experience and time to the benefit and enjoyment of all of us. Thirty -four pages of original material in a monthly publication is a rarity, and a treasure. I want to thank everyone who contributed to this issue. Also, I continue to invite new contributions, especially from those of you who have never written for our magazine before. Modern Aquarium is one of the best local aquarium society publications in the country. Our magazine has won many awards, and has been mentioned numerous times in national publications. Not all of us can have a book published, but any member can write an article, and have it printed in one of the most highly awarded amateur aquarium hobby publications, Modern Aquarium. In addition to original articles on specific fish and fishkeeping in general, original fish and aquatic plant drawings, and high quality photographs of tanks and aquatic life are also needed. Please remember that Greater City no longer takes a summer “break,” and that we will have a meeting in both July and August. Because of construction at the Queens Botanical Garden, we will not be meeting there, at least not through the end of this year. Also, our next few meetings will be on the second, not the first, W ednesday of the month. Paid-up members will get a postcard reminder before each meeting. If you are a paid-up member and have not been getting a postcard, please stop by the Modern Aquarium distribution table and let me know. It could be that there was a typographical error on our mailing list, or that you moved and forgot to notify us. W hatever the reason, if you are a paid-up member, but have not been getting a monthly meeting reminder postcard, please let me know. It is very important that we have a way to notify you of changes. O ur website ( will also have the latest information on our meeting schedule (of course, you have to take the first step, and log on to that website).

June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

President’s Message by JOSEPH FERDENZI


don’t remember exactly when the idea hit me. Maybe it was after returning from a Northeast Council weekend in Connecticut. Maybe it was after attending a North Jersey Aquarium Society show. Or, perhaps, the idea hit me after going to an American Cichlid Association convention, or an American Killifish Association convention, or an American Livebearer Association convention, all held in New Jersey. The idea that hit me first came in the form of a question: “Why aren’t any events like this held in our part of New York?” What struck me even more as I thought about it was the fact that we have four major aquarium societies that are headquartered in each of the four counties located on Long Island (two of these counties are also in New York City). Why couldn’t we combine our resources and bring a major event to this area? Greater City had recent experience in putting on shows, usually every two years, including one at a hotel near La Guardia Airport. The other clubs hadn’t done shows recently, but they staged giant one-day auctions just about every year. It was clear to me that, among the four clubs, there were some talented and experienced people who could pull off a major event. So, sometime in 2005, I decided to hold a meeting at my house to discuss this idea. I invited all of the current Presidents, as well as some other current or former officers — in other words, my personal list of the local “shakers and doers.” Of course, I had no idea how my concept was going to be received, but, heck, if even one other club wanted to join Greater City in the undertaking, I was prepared to recommend that we do it. To my delight, my proposal was well received. This did not totally surprise me because, of course, we are all friends and dedicated to this hobby. As friends, we trust each other — a key ingredient for a group to work well together. And our dedication informs us that we need to both serve our members and promote our hobby — a major weekend event was a missing ingredient in the New York City/Long Island aquarium hobby scene. Each President had to discuss the project with their membership or Board, and gain the necessary approval. All of these discussions required a few months. Once this occurred (and,

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

by the way, each society was very much in favor of the project), we faced our first major step: finding a location for the event. The representatives of all the clubs were sent to scour the countryside for a suitable location, much like missionaries being sent to proselytize in their native land. Many options were considered, but one feature was eventually agreed upon — it had to be a hotel. Our joint experience told us that only a hotel has all the amenities and resources that make for a successful weekend event. Of course, we also wanted to find a hotel that was somewhat centrally located and reasonably priced. Centrally located probably meant Nassau County. But, as we were to learn, Nassau and reasonably priced were mutually exclusive concepts. The search for a suitable hotel became a frustrating and prolonged process. Eventually, Greater City’s Frank Laudato came forward with a proposal that seemed promising. Astutely, Frank had been in touch with the Long Island Tourism Bureau. When he mentioned bringing a convention to Long Island, they were pleased to help. At some point, they mentioned that the founders of the public aquarium Atlantis Marine World in Riverhead were planning a new hotel right next to the aquarium. Although the location, Riverhead, was in eastern Suffolk County, the sacrifice of distance seemed to be compensated by the ability to have an event next door to a well-regarded public aquarium. Everyone seemed to think that this was the one venue that held promise. So, Frank and I began to focus on this location. The other consideration was when to have the event. Initially, I had suggested the Columbus Day weekend. I chose that weekend for several reasons. One, a three-day weekend gives all the people who work or attend the convention an extra day of relaxation. Two, the weather on Long Island is beautiful at that time of the year. Three, it wouldn’t fall on the same weekend as other area aquarium events. Four, it wasn’t prime-time wedding season (which can “bump” you out of many hotels). After many months of exploration and negotiation, mostly by Frank, we had a hotel and a date. As it turned out, it did not appear that the hotel to be built next to the aquarium would be open by 2007. So, we booked the nearby Best Western Hotel, which is on the same street and is right next door to a popular shopping mall, Tanger Outlets. We wanted to have our Saturday night banquet at the aquarium, but they were booked with wedding after wedding. So, instead, we decided to have the Saturday night banquet at the hotel in 2007, and we booked the aquarium for the banquet in 2008. However, the aquarium has generously agreed to donate one hundred free

June 2007


admissions for 2007, which we will probably offer to the first 100 registrants, or use for some other fund raising purpose. Also, as we went along, we discovered that all the venues would be considerably cheaper if we changed our dates from the Columbus Day weekend to the Veterans Day weekend (it seems that the weather is so nice in October, that Long Island is still prime wedding territory). Now that we had the location and a date, we were ready for overdrive. This first event has been modeled on the very successful Northeast Council (NEC) event held every year in Hartford, Connecticut. It is a three day event that features speakers from around the nation and the world, vendors, a Saturday banquet, and a giant Sunday auction. Everyone has a great time, and not having a fish show component reduces the work almost in half. And, although there is no fish show, there are plenty of fish. They are displayed and sold by the vendors, they get sold or swapped by attendees, and they are on display at the giant Sunday auction. The NEC format will be used in 2007 and 2008. It allows us to get our “feet wet” while not drowning at this beginning stage. Once we’ve gotten our “sea

legs,” we can venture into more complicated waters, such as bringing the annual conventions of the national speciality associations to New York every two years (with a one year break between events so that the organizers don’t collapse from exhaustion). * * * By the time this event comes to fruition on the Veteran’s Day weekend of 2007, some of us will have been working on this event for over two years! Despite all the effort and worries, I have experienced something gratifying. What has been wonderful has been the genuine camaraderie exhibited by all my fellow organizers. We are indeed fortunate to have a great group of people at the helm of each of the four clubs. Frankly, I don’t think you could pull off an event like this if we weren’t all friends and shared the same goals. I am honored to have been asked to be the Chairman of this event. I just hope I don’t disappoint anyone. But, regardless, I think that no one who attends this convention will be disappointed, because I know the quality of the people working on this event. I have supreme confidence in their ability to put on a show that will make the aquarium world proud.

Important Information As many of you already know, the Greater City Aquarium Society will NOT be meeting at the Queens Botanical Garden until further notice; probably early next year. Our alternate meeting location will be: The VFW Post 136-06 Horace Harding Expressway Flushing, NY 11367 Also, our meeting DAY will be changed to the SECOND WEDNESDAY of the month, unless otherwise announced. Regardless of the location, meetings will, as always, begin promptly at 7:30 pm. Please read your monthly postcards for any last minute changes. Please spread the word to people who otherwise might not know. The most up-to-date information can always be found on our website: In December, our annual Holiday Party and Awards Banquet will, however, be held at the Palace Diner, as it has been in recent years; date to be announced.

Remember: there will be NO meetings at the Queens Botanical Garden until further notice.


June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

Main themes which Claudia returns to throughout the text are water changes, good bacteria, water changes, conservation of energy, and water changes. I offer you a few quotes which emphasize these concepts: “Treat your ‘good bacteria’ with as much care as you do your cichlids” (Chapter Four). “Will they (cichlids) go a Series On Books For The Hobbyist out of their way to kill another cichlid that is not in by SUSAN PRIEST their territory? No, because that would expend energy that they could not afford to waste” ver the years I have written more than sixty(Chapter Eight). “Nothing matters more to the five book reviews for Modern Aquarium. I health of your cichlids, and indeed of all fish, than can’t help but feel that each one has been regular water changes. Other maintenance is part of a grand plan, a stepping stone, if you will, important too, but nothing trumps changing water.” leading up to this very special opportunity. What (Chapter Four). makes this one so special? Why, the author, of I have often heard course! hobbyist s b emoan the As if there weren’t downside of the water Aquarium Care of Cichlids already enough reasons for us to changers which hook up to a By Claudia Dickinson take pride in being able to claim faucet (of which there are a T.F.H. Publications, 2007 her as one of our own, Claudia few different brands). They Dickinson has written a book waste large amounts of clean just for us! When I say “US,” I water in the process of of course include aquarists from throughout the removing water from the tank. Claudia offers us a entire English-speaking world. (I wonder how long solution to this problem. After the siphoning it will be before Aquarium Care of Cichlids is action has been started by running the faucet, it will translated into other languages.) However, those of continue to “suck” (my word) even if the faucet has us here at Greater City can’t help but to take an been shut off. She gives us no excuses for extra-personal interest, as well as to indulge postponing this most important task! ourselves in some not-so-modest “boasting rights.” Chapter Six could just as aptly be called In between the table of contents, the list of “Prevention of Stress is the Best Medicine.” resources, and the index, there are eight chapters Stress is described by our author as the “root of simply overflowing with advice and information. illness.” So, what puts a fish under stress? A The titles of the chapters are: Why Cichlids?, “Stress Checklist” may contain such items as: Understanding Cichlids, Preparing the Cichlid overcrowding, overfeeding/poor nutrition, Aquarium, Water Changes! (And Other insufficient good bacteria, insufficient “hideyMaintenance), The Cichlid Diet, Prevention is the holes” (my word) which will lead to fear, water too Best Medicine, So Many Cichlids To Choose From, hot or too cold, inappropriate tankmates, etc. and lastly, Breeding Cichlids and Beyond. Of Hopefully when you start thinking about it, and particular interest are the various text boxes which look around at your own fish’s environment, your draw the reader’s attention to those items which stress checklist will be a short one. Claudia hopes we will remember most. You may If you are someone who doesn’t actually want to take a separate tour through the book, read aquarium books, but is best described as a focusing only on the yellow circles most aptly titled browser, there are a few highlights I would like to “The Expert Knows.” make sure you don’t overlook. I guarantee that the Our author starts us off with the question the description of “fish stuff” (her words) on page “Why Cichlids?” I find this to be so much more 37 will strike a chord of familiarity in every one of refreshing than “what is a cichlid?” which I have you. Page 48 has a text box entitled “Keep a Little come across countless times. Intelligence, heart Extra,” which recommends tucking a “spare” (my and mind, personality-plus; right from the beginning word) sponge filter or two in your established tanks she makes us want to know more! so that you are prepared for the unexpected. You On a scale of one to ten (one being a rank should go out of your way to read the explanation beginner, and ten being a top expert), this book is a of what makes water changes so important on page good choice for readers in the one through eight 57. Aggression management, which is discussed range of fishkeeping experience. Those readers in on pages 102 and 103, tells you when to grab the the upper twenty percent levels of expertise may not net, when to set up another tank, and when to let find it to be challenging, which is not to say that “Mr. Hot-to-Trot” (her words) pace for a while. they won’t enjoy it. The writing style is friendly And, to soothe the soul of the browser within you, without being flippant!


Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

June 2007


don’t miss out on the photo of the “cichlid paradise” floor.” I even know that the dog is a Boston (my words) on pages 36 and 37. Terrier! (See photo inset on this page.) Does anyone know the name of the fish on Published by T.F.H., a name we all know the cover of this book? It is an Acarichthys heckelii well, this book is also part of the Animal Planet Pet (a.k.a. the Thread-Finned Acara). How do I know Care Library; “Expertly written, these user-friendly this? I had to ask our author. I would not be doing guides are bound to delight the entire family.” To my job as a reviewer if I did not point out any find out more about this series, visit obvious shortcomings. To me, one that stands out is the lack of identification of the fishes in the Our publisher wants us to know that photos, including the one on the cover. The Claudia Dickinson is an award-winning author, the majority of the photos were taken from the T.F.H. managing editor of the American Cichlid archives, and Claudia did not make the choices or Association’s Buntbarsche Bulletin, and that her do the design layout. Newcomers to the world of personal focus is on cichlids from South America, cichlids, as well as more seasoned aquarists, need to Central America, Madagascar, and West Africa. know this information, and will have to do Oh, there’s more, including the fact that she writes independent research when a fish face jumps off the for Modern Aquarium. How often has she labeled one of us a “STAR?” Now it is our turn to return page at them that they want to know the name of. Now that I have gone on the record with a the sentiment. Claudia, you are our “STAR gripe, I must make a qualified retraction. Chapter AUTHOR,” and we are so very proud of you!!! seven, “So Many Cichlids To As I re-visit each Choose From,” was not chapter and page, I wish I authored by Claudia, but by could relate many more pearls David Boruchowitz (T.F.H. of wisdom. I could squeeze in editor extraordinaire). In this a few more by foregoing a chapter, virtually all of the visit with Tyler and Emily, photos are labeled with their but some things are just too scientific names. The intent of good to give up! this chapter is to help the I had chosen a few reader make an informed of her own words from the choice when they are ready to text of Aquarium Care of purchase a cichlid. “Let’s take Cichlids to bring this review a look at the world of cichlids to a close, however Claudia and point out a few species has written a personal which are particularly good message just for us. ambassadors for the family.” Tyler and Emily “My greatest wish was to Having a bit of an write a book that offered an insider’s advantage, I can offer you a couple of understanding of why cichlids act and thrive (or “tidbits” that other reviewers won’t know about. not, as the case may be) as they do in our For example, the reference to temperature on page aquariums through an awareness by the reader of 44 was written on the night of Thanksgiving, 2006. the extent to which their behavior is driven by I can also report to you that the photo of the natural inclinations. I wanted it to be a book that Nandopsis (formerly Cichlasoma) haitiensis on would inspire those new to cichlids to discover the page 103 is of a fish which once belonged to none justified allure of this captivating, diverse family of other than our own Joe Ferdenzi (this being the one fishes, and one that would start them out on the and only fish of Joe’s among the T.F.H. photo right foot, thereby securing a place for cichlids in archives). their tanks for years to come. We can all learn This may actually be the most fun I have from each other, just as we do at each meeting of ever had while reading a book. I can see Claudia’s the GCAS, and hopefully those who already keep face beaming out at me from every page while she cichlids, and other fishes as well, will find carefully chooses each idea, concept, and fact, as something new within these pages, too.” well as the words to express them. On one page she Sometimes we have to read between the becomes an historian, on another a scientist, and on many others she is a hobbyist just like you or me. lines, and sometimes she comes right out and says Where does the hot cocoa mix fit into the equation? it. Basically, Claudia is telling us that she wants to You will have to look that up on your own. “If the share her love of all things “cichlid” with us. Of phone rings or the dog needs to be let out while course, it is easy for us to see this because she has been sharing her love with us for years. you’re changing the aquarium water, you can become distracted and end up with a drenched 6

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Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)


The Toninas:

Beautiful and Demanding Gems From South America

The purpose of this ongoing series is to expose you to the vast array of plants available in the hobby, their origin, characteristics and structure, growing requirements, common names and synonyms, availability, and cost. I will try to sprinkle in any personal experience I have had with these plants and will also try to answer any of your questions—so feel free to email me. This month we will talk about plants of the genus Tonina. More specifically, I will discuss the yet to be described Tonina sp. and Tonina fluviatilis. Origin and Structure: As I stated in the title of this article, both plants originate from South America. Tonina fluviatilis is considered an amphibious plant usually found in shallow water and on river banks. It has short, oblong shaped leaves that are bright green. When doing well, it is an interesting plant that gives nice contrast in a planted tank. Each stem has a snake-like appearance in my opinion, or better yet, they look like the carnivorous plant “Cleopatra” from the old Adams Family television series (I am showing my age). Tonina sp. has several variants coming from different areas of South America. Two most often seen are Tonina sp. Belem and Tonina sp. Manaus. They are difficult to distinguish from one another to all but the most educated in aquatic plants (at least in my opinion). Both have whirls of long slender leaves that taper to a point. These leaves flow up and out of the top of each stem and seem to form a fountain of bright green—quite spectacular!

acidic quite easily, so Tonina are quite at home here. In other parts of the country, reverse osmosis (RO) or rainwater would be required. Water chemistry, while extremely important, is not the only part of the equation. Tonina need high light—3 watts per gallon (WPG) would be a minimum. Nutrients would be a good idea and CO2 could not hurt. I have found that a tank with high light, occasional adding of nutrients (meaning, when I remember), and no CO2 will be sufficient to keep Tonina. They will root and grow, albeit slowly. Common Names and Synonyms: These plants have no common names. Availability and Cost: You will probably never find Tonina in a local fish store. They require very specific water conditions and lots of care. They are available online from many sources. Expect to pay $5-8 per bunch. I hope this article has helped you to appreciate this gem of a plant and has inspired you to try to cultivate it. Lots of Luck!!!!

Growing Requirements: The literature states that these plants are demanding to grow. The most important thing they need is soft acid water (stated soft with a pH range of 4-7). Fortunately, New York City water is wickedly soft, and can be made

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

June 2007



“MEMBERS NIGHT!” A GCAS GALAXY OF ÚÚÚ STARS!!!ÚÚÚ Tonight, the GCAS stages our annual series of mini-programs to be presented by our fellow members!

We extend a most Warm Welcome to Our Member Speakers By Claudia Dickinson Throughout the year we have the great fortune of learning from a diverse group of speakers who come to the GCAS from near and far as they enlighten us with their aquatic erudition and share their experiences. Each meeting, as I speak with you individually, I never cease to be enormously impressed by the wealth of knowledge that is held within the room. As I write the captions for ‘Looking Through the Lens,’ I envision what you are saying, as I think of the numerous varied topics of conversation that are being carried on. If only we could be so fortunate as to be a part of them all ~ think of the wisdom we could pass along to one another! Tonight is our opportunity to do exactly that as seven of our very own GCASers have so generously offered to present a mini-program on a topic that is relevant to their fishkeeping experiences. The skills, talents, and knowledge that each has acquired through working with their own fish will be shared with us, so that we may bring this home to our tanks and fishes. 8

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Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

***************************************** Crystal Mattocks and Sharon Barnett “Got Rocks?”

****************************************** Rich Levy “Fish at School — Focus on Our Youth”

****************************************** Carlotti De Jager “Bettas”

****************************************** Harry Faustmann “Live Foods”

***************************************** Dan and Marsha Radebaugh “Cheap Tricks!”

***************************************** Our deep and heartfelt appreciation to each of you! It is with great pride, and to our great good fortune, that we welcome you tonight.

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

June 2007


Adventures on the Rio Negro Part I

by CLAUDIA DICKINSON Photographs by the author


great dream of mine has been to visit the Rio Negro. On January 20th, 2006, that dream was hours away from being fulfilled as the plane took off from JFK, made its180 turn in the star-studded midnight sky, and headed south. I would soon once again be looking down at the breathtaking sight of the Amazon River, gently winding back and forth, making its way eastward in serpentine fashion through the dense jungle cover. Arriving in the city of São Paulo in southeastern Brazil by early morning, a plane change takes me back north to Manaus. We will have the great fortune of Dr. Labbish Chao, Scott Dowd, and Captain Mo Jr. leading our group, and I will finally visit Project Piaba, and the wonderful people and land of Brazil — and my dream — the Rio Negro. The riverboat, the Victoria Amazonica, will be our home for 2 weeks, and much time will be spent in the jungle with the fish, the birds, the wildlife, and the natives. I am bringing them lots...and lots...of gifts — my greatest joy! Brazil is very strict about exports and no fish are to be taken

out at the current time. Therefore, what collecting we do will strictly be for the aquarium facility at Project Piaba. What I will be able to bring home from this journey is a new, broadened horizon, and the knowledge and appreciation gained from the experience. I am so excited and glad to have you join me! Manaus, capital of Amazonas State, is a well populated city in the heart of the Amazon Rainforest in northwestern Brazil on the Rio Negro, close to the convergence with the Amazon River. An integral part of the rubber boom of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the city was enormously prosperous for the landowners, and flooded by desperately poor people seeking hope for a better life. Massive, elaborate mansions were erected, some actually brought from overseas, emanating the city’s rapid rise to wealth. The discovery of processing synthetic rubber brought financial ruin in 1920, and Manaus was left with a congested, impoverished population.

Immense, flamboyant mansions stand out in this metropolis that lies in the middle of the Amazon Rainforest as reminders of the early twentieth century rubber boom in a city now marked by poverty. Taking 15 years to reach its 1896 completion, the famous Manaus opera house, Teatro Amazonas, is lavishly decorated throughout with crystal chandeliers and Italian frescoes, exemplifying the enormous wealth of the rubber boom era.


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Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

Today, the bustling port of Manaus is the hub of life in this region of the Amazon. Goods of all sorts are constantly being brought in by boat to supply the city’s large populace. Revered livelihood of the people, the majestic river is portrayed in a vast expanse of black and white tiles depicting the celebrated “Wedding of the Waters,” where the blackwaters of the Rio Negro meet the whitewaters of the Rio Solimões.

As the ships unload in the back, the entrance to the immense market is well-traversed, particularly in the early morning hours when the raw foods are at their freshest. As I step in the door, I am overwhelmed by the enormity of the market, and the diversity of the fare.

Was another bag of produce really going to be placed upon this worker’s shoulders? The abilities of these hard working people never ceases to amaze me as they push their bodies and souls to the limit with seemingly tireless grace. Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

June 2007

Freshly caught Cichla. In the US—a cichlid aquarist’s dream, in Manaus—dinner!


The seemingly endless piles of fish appear to stretch on for miles. All of this will sell today!

Dried krill of all sizes, relished by our aquarium fishes in the US, is a staple on the human table in Brazil, and likely to be found in numerous dishes in which it is quite delicious! Purchasing fresh produce is a bit different in Brazil than in the US!

Next, we are off to an exporter who specializes in exquisite discus, straight from the Rio Negro!


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Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

Tub after tub of beautiful discus, one more breathtaking than the next, many larger than the palm of a man’s hand!

On to Labbish’s home where his aquaria are kept on the outdoor terrace. Here, the sun shines over them through the overhanging garden palms.

The fish flourish in Labbish’s natural aquariums in their outdoor tropical setting.

What treasures Randy Carey and I found as we were given the opportunity to peruse the many interesting artifacts in Labbish’s office! Fellow travelers are enthralled by the catfish in Labbish’s outdoor tubs while the doctor looks on, identifying the inhabitants.

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

June 2007


As the sun sets, we look down the steep embankment upon the mighty river, our eyes coming to rest on our home for the following weeks, the Victoria Amazonica! Part II of “Adventures on the Rio Negro� finds us heading upriver towards Barcelos, over 300 miles to the north, and only degrees south of the equator.

The 2007 American Cichlid Association Convention Sacramento, California Thursday, July 19th through Sunday, July 22nd, 2007

This year, the Convention is being hosted by the Sacramento Aquarium Society (SAS). Registration is now available online (at By ACA policy, all registrants for the convention must be a current member of either the American Cichlid Association (ACA) or the Sacramento Aquarium Society (SAS) at the time of the convention. Confirmed Speakers: Dr. Tim Hovanec Ad Konings Dr. Ron Coleman Andrew Soh Oliver Lucanus Chris Clevers Rainer Stawikowski Alex Saunders Banquet Speaker: Chuck Rambo


June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

The Contrary Cichlid Pelvicachromis pulcher by BERNARD HARRIGAN


hat else would you call an African cichlid that comes from soft, acidic water, whose female seems more like a male in that she is more colorful, more aggressive, and she’s the one who chooses the spawning site, and lures the male over to breed? Its name is really the name of another fish. Who is this fish? None other than the “contrary kribensis.” Over 30 years ago, kribs were imported under the scientific name Pelmatochromis kribensis. Then, Dr. Paul Loiselle and his colleague, Dr. Thys, nullified the Pelmatochromis genus. The new genus is Pelvicachromis. Then it was realized that the name “kribensis” didn’t suit this fish, since the name is derived from “Kribi,” a town in Southern Cameroon — an area where our misnamed fish isn’t even found. So, its new name became Pelvicachromis pulcher, “pulcher” deriving from the Latin word for “beautiful.” With all the reclassification of Pelvicachromis, another

fish ends up with the name Pelvicachromis kribensis. But, our intrepid little cichlid held onto its common name, “kribensis,” a name that’s as tenacious as the fish itself. The kribensis has a typical dwarf cichlid profile, with an elongated body and an upward sweep of its dorsal fin. Males can grow up to four inches, and the females are stubbier, growing to two and three-quarter inches. The body’s base has a brownish-yellow tone. A brownish-black line extends from the snout, along the lateral line, and through to the tail. Another line runs along the top of the body and across the base of the dorsal fin. Splashes of gold and touches of blue are common. There are several different color patterns, depending on the strain. The female’s abdomen is rounder, and can take on a magenta coloration. Her dorsal fin can have one or more black spots trimmed in gold. All in all, this is a very striking fish.

Drawing by Bernard Harrigan

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June 2007


Kribs originally come from Nigeria, predominantly the delta area of the Niger River, in West Africa. Odds are that the kribs in the tanks of local stores have been commercially bred in Florida. That’s not a bad thing. Kribensis have been bred in the hobby to such a point that they are more at home in your aquarium than they are in a stream from the African rainforest. I’ve heard of them being kept at pHs ranging from 5.0 to 8.0. There are not too many fish with a range like that. They are kept in water from soft to hard, tolerate a temperature range from 72 to 82F, and are undemanding as to feeding or breeding. I’ve had kribensis spawn as young as six months old. As noted earlier, they are not fussy. They will breed in a tank as small as 5½ gallons, and you don’t have to let them pair off on their own. I find it a plus to be able to choose which fish to breed. I think that goes back to my guppy breeding days.

A basic breeding setup consists of a ten gallon tank, a clay flowerpot on its side, a box filter, aged tapwater that has been adjusted to the same water chemistry which the kribs are already used to, and some Java Moss. Place the conditioned pair into the tank, and let nature take its course. Once in the breeding tank the female will take on the role of the aggressor, taking her position at the opening of the flowerpot, and flashing her red belly like a red light outside a bordello. When you see the female staying inside the cave, and the male guarding outside, you can be fairly certain that they’ve spawned. In about ten days the fry will be free-swimming, and need to be fed infusoria. Kribs are beautiful, captivating, intelligent, and make excellent parents. No wonder they’re part of the “bread and butter” of the aquarium trade, even if they can sometimes be contrary.

The Aquarium Federation of Independent Societies and Hobbyists (AFISH) presents....

The AFISH Convention At the Best Western Hotel Riverhead, Long Island, NY

November 9th thru November 11th 2007 This is a partial list of the speakers that are slated to appear at the AFISH Convention: Anton Lamboj Joe Yaiullo Todd Gardner Tullio Dell Aquila Jack Wattley Rosario LaCorte Chuck Davis Mo Devlin For more information, visit the Convention website at: 16

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Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)



s a boy, I remember summers so hot that the tar blistered in the streets. Every winter had snow, with snowball fights and sledding down hills for days, sometimes weeks, before it melted. There were few cars to interrupt street stickball games. Baseball players had colorful names like Van Lingo Mungo, Bobo Newsome and Vinegar Bend Mizell. If you wanted to go somewhere, you walked, and you could walk for hours. Distance wasn’t measured in miles or time; after all, you had a whole lifetime ahead. Buses and subways ran every few minutes, and cost a nickel, no more than a dime, but why waste it? You could buy a Mello-roll ice cream for 6¢. It was during the War, perhaps 1943, that a friend started me in the hobby, with a 2½ gallon tank and some of his extra fish. I could be trusted — I was experienced. Everyone kept “goopies” in those days. It wasn’t till later when prices rose that guppy was pronounced correctly. Anyway, it was soon after that when I got my big tank, a 15 gallon, and I placed it in the corner of the livingroom where the morning sun hit it. Vallisneria (6 for 25¢) and a bunch of Anacharis or Elodea, also a quarter, grew quickly; the Val spread runners along the bottom and the Anacharis was budding branches all over the top. Why can’t I buy and grow plants like that today? On sunny days you could see streams of bubbles exuding from the plants. These were the oxygenators; no sophisticated air and filtering systems in those days. We went for “balance.” I also had a natural alarm—it was called Mom. When she held her nose, it was time to break down the tank and clean the gravel thorough1y. That’s when I held my nose! I kept mostly livebearers, and there were always young of various sizes among the plants. Green Swordtails were a favorite. Who would want that new strain that was actually more of a brownish rust than red? Fancy colors and finnage weren’t common yet. For example, a big fuss was Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

made over Trinidad Guppies, where the female had color - a black spot with a yellow smudge on the tail. Woolworth’s, the 5¢ and 10¢ store (yes, it actually had many items for that price), in Jamaica, Queens, was my first fish source. When you saw someone walking home with a little white container with a wire handle, you knew they were bringing home a goldfish, not Chinese food. Chinese takeout hadn’t been popularized yet. Who could afford 60¢ for Chow Mein? In a second-hand bookstore on Jamaica Ave., just off Sutphin Blvd., I found the mother-lode of booklore - back issues of THE AQUARIUM MAGAZINE for 10¢ (new issues were 25¢). One issue, around 1938, showed an angelfish on the cover. Inside, it told how the Germans finally found the secret of breeding angelfish. It was all in the water. Great water makes great beer so, it must be great for hard-to-breed fish. Too bad, America. At about this time, I discovered mail-order catalogs. The Aquarium Stock Co., in N.Y.C., and Eastern Gardens, on either Kissena or Parsons Blvd., had the best. They showed the greatest variety, the most fantastic, exotic displays of fish; drawn, not photographed —fish I had never heard of. The discus - $50.00! Until that moment, the most expensive fish I had seen were in Henry’s fish store on Jamaica Avenue in Richmond Hill or Woodhaven. In a huge display tank in his tiny shop were very impressive schools of Neon Tetras and Rasboras, selling for $1.00 each and swimming around a two foot high Madagascar Lace Plant, one of the most exotic plants imported. It was selling for $10.00, and had no takers. Those prices were mind-boggling. Occasionally I’d take the Jamaica El, with my 2 hobbyist friends, into downtown N.Y.C. We’d walk over to Nassau Street, where guppies, platys, zebra danios, etc., sold for 9¢ each. Plain Corydoras catfish sold for 19¢ (the albino version had not yet made an appearance). Then we’d walk

June 2007


over to Aquarium Stock Co., around Worth St., and one more store whose name and location escapes me. There, I fell in love with and bought a beautiful pair of Black Platys with green highlights, two for 50¢. When I arrived home, I removed the lid from the round sweet butter container before plastic — God, did I say that? (Was there ever a “before plastic” time?) Well, to my surprise, she had delivered a load of babies. She must have been the sex goddess of the previous tank, because in her offspring no two were alike. They provided me years and generations of varied colored platys. Fish feeding in those days caused some unique problems. There weren’t any freeze-dried or frozen foods and no live brine shrimp. However, the sewer outside my house constantly backed up after a rain. It had a plentiful supply of mosquito larvae which I’d catch, rinse, and put in my tank. My mom and sister would sometimes pay the price of indulging me as they swatted arms and

faces from the bites of full grown mosquitos that escaped. Daphnia was another food, but I could never locate the duck ponds where they supposedly flourished. Once I biked to Forest Park on Woodhaven near Myrtle Avenue. In the smaller of two ponds, I saw a red fuzz in the water, just off shore, that disappeared as I approached. Finally it reappeared, and I scooped up a handful of mud and tubifex worms. At home I placed them in a butter container and let cold water drip onto them in the sink in the cellar. That night, there was a blood-curdling scream from my sister, who never, I mean never, ever, went into the cellar. After I got yelled at by my mother, I watched sadly as my worms were flushed down the toilet. I pleaded with them that it was better than the live snakes I used to bring home. Yes, well so much for nostalgia.

A Fishkeeper’s Story



t is nothing short of amazing, when I think back to the time when I received my first fish tank as a Christmas present! That was back in 1973, so it will be 34 years this Christmas that I officially became a hobbyist/fishkeeper. So long goldfish bowls, or so I thought. I still use them today to house bettas or pregnant livebearers. Time flies, doesn’t it? Little did I know then what I would be getting myself into. Over that time, I’ve gone through many fish tanks, hoods, filters, pumps, fish food, and of course, fish. I’ve had my share (probably even more than my share) of triumphs as well as setbacks through my involvement in the hobby. I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but they didn’t deter me from keeping tropical fish. I’ve had both large and small fish, egglayers and livebearers, freshwater and marine. Even with the errors I’ve made and the losses I’ve suffered, I still enjoy fishkeeping, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I can still remember the first time my fish bred. It was December 31st of 1973, and a green swordtail female gave birth to about a dozen or so fry. I rescued them from the community tank, so I’m sure many more fry were born and subsequently eaten. Over the years, I have bred Zebra Danio, Pearl Danio, bettas, Convict Cichlids, kribensis, guppies, swordtails, and platies. I was not successful in rearing any fry from other fish that bred for me: angelfish, Black Paradisefish, Dwarf Gouramis, and the Black Tetra.


I used to have a 16" Black Pacu (you don’t see those in the stores lately) named George, who was very tame and would allow me to hand feed it. I used to utilize a plastic shopping bag to move him out of his 20 gallon High tank to do water changes. I lost him in November of 1988, while I was away on my honeymoon (the result of not performing a water change the day prior to my leaving). It has been a lot of work maintaining my fish and their tanks, but the experience has been worth it. It has been interesting to observe their behavior, whether it’s territorial displays, spawning rituals, or establishing hierarchies. These behaviors are as varied as the number of species I’ve kept. Bettas are my favorite fish. Not only are they amongst the most beautiful fish in the hobby, I’ve seen various pairs of these fish spawn in the most interesting ways, demonstrating their own individual character. I can go on and on about my experiences with the hobby, but I would need to write an entire novel about it. Suffice it to say that it has been a pleasure keeping tropical fish, and I know I’ll be doing it for the rest of my life. I am a “fish person,” and I’m proud of it. Happy fishkeeping!

June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)



hen I first joined this fish club, the GCAS, I was going through a lot of “firsts” in my life. I was newly engaged with my boyfriend of 5 years, and I was leaving a current job that I had for 10 years for a new one with new opportunities. This new job would require many sacrifices which I did not see at the time, but it allowed me to experience many rewards that I would not have partaken in, had I remained in my original employment. Last but not least, I became a member of an aquarium society. I had never been a member of any type of club where people gathered together regularly to discuss and share a common interest or hobby. I was new to the fishkeeping hobby, and I wanted to learn all that I could about properly caring for, raising, and maintaining my water-living creatures. The club met only once a month, and yet those hours shared were (and still are) so cherished. The knowledge obtained by our guest speakers on various topics, the auctions, the raffles, the monthly magazine full of interesting articles, and the laughs we share with our fellow club members on trivial occurrences during our meetings! The friendly and warm atmosphere our club emits is amazing (and at times…very overwhelmingly loud!). Throughout our lives, whether we intend to or not, we touch and affect people in different ways (and vice versa). A simple smile, a word of

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

advice, or simply lending an ear can be all it takes to change someone else’s life and direction. During these last four years of being a GCAS member I have learned a lot, and this has opened my eyes to other areas in my life that were lacking due to ‘settling,’ and feeling that what I had was all there was to be. Although sometimes one’s life experiences can overwhelm one and take their toll…by the same token those same experiences can change you and make you stronger in ways you didn’t know that you could ever be. In my case, it took four years of monthly meetings for me to see that there was someone out there who could clearly see what my fiancé could not in the nine years that we were together. Although I had felt disconnected and taken for granted, the engagement kept us bound to each other. I got tired of trying to salvage what love was left, and decided to move on. The engagement was off, and a nine year relationship ended ironically (but not intentionally) two days prior to the 4th of July—Independence Day! Now I am being courted by a ‘Splendid Betta,’ or is it ‘Betta splendens’? Hmm… I have trouble getting that straight, but I’m sure all of you can understand what I’m trying to say. Who would have thought that Oscars and Bettas were so compatible? I will keep a thorough log, and let you know if there are any signs of a bubblenest forming…;)

June 2007


Photos and captions

The antics of fish buddies Artie Friedman and Ed Vukich never cease to make us all smile!

A warm welcome is given to Mike Hellweg by GCAS President Joe Ferdenzi, as Mike brings us a superb presentation on the “Joy of Goldfish!”

Susan Priest is honored by the Northeast Council of Aquarium Societies for her original, o u t s t a n d i ng “F i s hkee per ’s Anonymous,” a Modern Aquarium column that is the best thing since vanilla ice cream and apple pie!

LaMonte Brown already has his pr ese ntat ion prepared for “Members Night” 2008. We can barely wait, LaMonte!

After time away due to a busy schedule, it is wonderful to have Andrew Jacovina’s cheerful smile back with the GCAS!

Elliot Oshins has a new treasure to bring home to brighten his fishes' day!

Bennie Graham is wondering how his African cichlids would feel about being surrounded by a few tanks of goldfish!?

Temes Mo is thrilled with his Blue Acara!


June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

by Claudia Dickinson

With his passion for goldfish, this is the perfect night for Mario Bengcion.

The evening’s presentation, and his Door Prize win of the Goldfish Aqualog Special, has Ben Yacono well on his way to experiencing “The Joy of Goldfish!” Rod DuCasse holds the winning ticket to “The Goldfish,” a Door Prize most generously donated by Finley Aquatic Books!

Doug Curtin, Jason Kerner, and Don Curtin have their tickets ready for the night’s big raffle drawing!

Warren Feuer, our GCAS guest Mike Hellweg, Ed Vukich, and Elliot Oshins celebrate another fabulous evening with the GCAS!

The author steps on the other side of the lens to spend a moment with her dear friend, and fellow goldfish afficionado, Mike Hellweg.

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June 2007


An occasional column for society exchanges, guest appearances, articles and items of general interest. We try not to bite off more than we can swallow. If you wish to offer comments, suggestions, or any information that you would like to see in this column, the authors encourage you to contact us through Greater City, or at a monthly meeting.

by Stephen Sica with Donna Sosna Sica


ere I am sitting at the dining room table on the President’s Day holiday. Donna just cleared some old clothes out in one of her closets and I just finished reviewing her parent’s income documents to determine if they could go another year without filing a tax return. Yes, they can go one more year! Perhaps it’s the only joy of being poor. With this chore out of the way I’m thinking, “should I begin our taxes or should I try to begin our next column?” And the column wins, as I ask Donna to relocate our stack of club publications to see if there’s anything to write about. I vaguely recall filing them in one of my closets so that they would avoid holiday company. Paging through some of last year’s club publications, the exchange editor in the September Paradise Press of the Long Island Aquarium Society mentioned several Modern Aquarium articles ranging from Bernard Harrigan’s “Seahorse Chronicles” series to Claudia Dickinson’s “Expedition to the Peruvian Amazon Jungle” to Alexander Priest’s “Have a Great Dayi! - Day’s Paradise Fish,” and finally Mike Hellweg’s “The Blue Pin Tail Gourami.” In the same issue of Paradise Press, club President Arie Gilbert writes about divers’ sightings of lionfish from south Florida to North Carolina, and even Long Island. I have my doubts; but if it is true, these fish must be migrating, because I don’t believe that they can adapt to the winter water temperatures off Long Island. I have seen Gulf Stream tropical fish off Long Island, but they perish once winter arrives. I believe that lionfish would also perish. Bernard Harrigan was reprinted in the January/February Youngstown Aquarist for his “A Swimming Dragon” about the saltwater Leafy Seadragon, a member of the Sygnathidae family with seahorses, of course, and pipefish. An original article that caught my eye in the same issue 22

is “It’s Greener On The Far Side!” by Curt Smith. This is a good basic primer on aquarium plants, and I learned that the roots of good plants should smell good, bulb plants rarely do well without the bulb, and too fine a substrate packs the roots too tightly to encourage good root development. Also, a fine reference book on planted aquariums has been written by Barry James. But what is the name of the book? I read somewhere that there are about twelve-hundred species in the Characin family. If so, why are there only twenty or thirty tetra and related species in pet stores? The January issue of the New Hampshire Aquarium Society’s The Granite-Fisher caught my eye with a club member’s essay about Marvin, a Black tetra that the author had for approximately twenty-two years. During its lifetime Marvin suffered through a broken home life (the tank’s seams gave way). This was matched by an unpleasant divorce by his owner that included a death threat by flushing. Next, Marvin was forced to live on the quiet in a two gallon desk top aquarium in a no pets allowed apartment. Happily, his owner remarried and purchased a small house. Marvin was able to live his golden years in a planted twenty-nine gallon home…the March issue had a Dwarf Gourami breeding article; the author got his females from Wal-Mart. He claims that they almost always have females in stock and these fish most likely came from the same wholesaler as other pet stores. The Nassau County Aquarium Society’s Pisces Press closed out 2006 by reprinting Elliot Oshins’ brief essay, “Counting The Days,” about the ancient calendar…the September/October 2006 Cichlidae Communique of the Pacific Coast Cichlid Association has an article on a homebuilt tank stand that was designed and built to support a

June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

fifty gallon acrylic aquarium. An interesting note The Greater Pittsburgh Aquarium Society, is that the back of the stand is anchored to a wall Inc. is celebrating its sixtieth birthday! As early as stud to prevent movement during California 1914, Pittsburgh has been home to aquarium clubs. earthquakes. Its monthly publication, Finformation, is only eight pages, but the cover The February always has a large, issue of the North Jersey beautiful color photograph. Aq ua r i um S o c i e t y’ s Most recent photos are Reporter has an article about caves for fish. aquatic plants. If the Chuck Davis, the author, primary subject is a fish, claims that under reptile the background is accessories are several planted…in the caves perfect for fish: they March/April Youngstown Aquarist Karen Guman are less expensive than describes her purchase of a aquarium décor; they look very young pair of albino like rock; they are safe and durable, and they come in This pair of Banded butterflyfish is seeking Bristlenose plecos that a variety of sizes. The a hiding place to trade a good tidbit or two proceeded to spawn twelve larger models can house of fishy gossip. Donna says not to offspring a few weeks hefty fish. Say goodbye to worry...she can read lips. Anyway, I know later. Karen claims that the male was “not much PVC? that she can read my mind. over 2.25 inches and the At the March female less than two GCAS meeting, some inches.” Then they spawned again a week later and homegrown Goodeidae were auctioned. If anyone yet again two weeks later! The earlier article on is interested in a “tankbuster” goodeid, the Ameca spawning the Desert goby was also reprinted in the splendens, or Butterfly Goodeid, can reach almost Youngstown Aquarist…rumor has it that the next five inches at maturity. This fish is probably too issue has a story by Sigourney Weaver mating active for a community tank; but it’s quite hardy gobies and plecos titled Fish Alien. The and easy to keep. Most goodeid species come March/April issue also has an article about from Mexico and Central America…Fancy Fins of the Circle City Aquarium Club in Indianapolis has spawning the Zebra pleco (L46)…there’s a lot of an article on spawning the Desert goby. The nice fish out there being bred nowadays. author describes his fish as “sort of dopey and kind Finally, Mark Soberman will be giving a of ugly…charming pets…like little puppy dogs” presentation on June 28th at the North Jersey Aquarium Society on African catfish…is this a that “always seem happy to see you…and make misprint? What happened to “Corydoras Mark”? you think they want to be petted.” I wonder what’s in the water out there.

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Depend ing on the species, the latitudinal location, and the temperature of the water, it can last anywhere from nine to 30 days. As most of you know, the female transfers her eggs to the male, who fertilizes them and holds them in his pouch until they hatch, at which point he gives birth. A male Hippocampus ingens can give birth to approximately 2,000 fry; while a dwarf seahorse, like Hippocampus zosterae, can give birth to as few as five at a time.


How long do seahorses live?

T h e known life expectancy of seahorses is based on captive specimens. They range from three to five years for the larger species down to one year for the very small species. In the wild, predation, disease, and human carelessness can reduce those numbers.



What’s the largest seahorse



The largest seahorse species is the Pot-Bellied Seahorse, Hippocampus abdominalis. Its maximum recorded height was 35 centimeters. It can be found in the waters between Australia and New Zealand. The second largest is the Pacific Seahorse, Hippocampus ingens, with a maximum recorded height of 31 cm. This species is native to the west coast of the Americas, from California to Colombia.


pregnancy last?




Based on my own experiences, and those of other breeders, I would have to say no. Studies from the wild claim that all species appear to be monogamous within a single breeding cycle, that is, the male accepts eggs from only one female. I’ve known of tanks where one female is keeping two to three males pregnant almost all of the time. He might be monogamous, but clearly she isn’t. As far as I’m concerned, more fieldwork needs to be done in order to make this claim.

How long does a seahorse

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Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)


Are there any freshwater seahorses? If so, can you tell us anything about them?

The Cape Seahorse, Hippocampus capensis, is sometimes referred to as the freshwater seahorse. That’s because it can tolerate salinity levels from one to 59 parts per thousand (notice I said, “tolerate”), but it’s not a true freshwater fish. It was the first seahorse to be put on the Threatened List in 1994. It also has the

smallest natural range of any seahorse, which is off the southern tip of South Africa. It can reach a maximum height of 12 cm, but can start breeding at 5cm. Males have a longer and heavier body than females, as well as a longer tail. From time to time, I will do more Q&A, as questions arise. (See the June 2005 issue of Modern Aquarium for my last Q&A column.) If you have questions about seahorses, please e-mail them to If it isn’t something I’ve covered already, or something I plan to cover in an upcoming column, I’d be happy to include it on the next Q&A that I write. Thank you for the positive responses I’ve gotten so far to the “Seahorse Chronicles.”


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June 2007





hope all of you missed this column last month, and are glad to see its return. I will be tapping a few more of you on the shoulder so that I will have a couple of articles on hand, just in case someone can’t complete theirs in time. Who knows; I may even receive an unsolicited submission or two, and even I won’t know who wrote it! This month’s autobiographer has chosen a narrative style to tell us about their life as a fishkeeper. I’m sure you will all agree with me that it is most enjoyable reading.

My father, a scientist and naturalist, brought me an invaluable appreciation for the beauty in all creatures, from insects, to large mammals, to aquatic life. For this, I am forever grateful. At the age of eight, the first ‘real’ aquarium came into my life. In fact it was not one, but eight aquariums — all at once! A friend of one of my father’s patients, out of unexpected necessity, had to give away his entire collection of tanks, equipment, gravel — even fish! To our chorus of pleas, and much to my mother’s chagrin — my father said ‘yes!’ I will always remember those coming days Fishkeeper Anonymous/June 2007: and subsequent years. In one day, in came a Fish, turtles, salamanders, frogs, toads, massive amount of tanks, stands, and equipment. snakes, and any other Of course, through a exotica that I, or my child ’s eyes, the Suggested Questions two older brothers, enormity of it was  Please introduce yourself. caught in the woods immense! Through my  Tell us about your favorite aquarium. and streams mother’s eyes, I am  What was your very first fish? bordering our home certain it was more than  Tell us about your education as a fishkeeper. and the surrounding immense!  Is there someone you think of as a mentor? area were kept in an There was one Tell us about him or her. array of buckets and tank that seemed larger  Describe your “Fantasy Fish Tank.” receptacles, where than life. In thinking  If you were a fish, which one would you be? we observed and back, it was probably  Who is your “Hobby Hero?” cared for them until 125 gallons, but you  What fish which you have never kept would the last container that could have told me 300 you like to acquire? we could devise was gallons and my eight  Describe your biggest fishkeeping “blooper!” filled, and it was year old mind would  Describe your most memorable fishkeeping time to release the have believed that. The experience. animals back into the other tanks ranged in  What advice would you give to a wild and go in search size from there down. beginning fishkeeper? of more. One day, They all had metal  What are your fishkeeping goals? wh i l e k n e e l i n g frames and slate - OR write a narrative story quietly on the mossbottoms, and amidst the laden rocks that lay plethora of supplies, resting amongst a there were several tubes small trickling stream, my searching eyes spotted of epoxy, which I came to know well! what seemed like a miracle. There sat the tiniest, The person who owned this collection most beautiful little green slider turtle, identical to previously had obviously been a true afficionado, the ones found for sale in Kresge’s five and dime for it was a fish lover’s dream consisting of every store. That little turtle, soon to become known as bit of paraphernalia imaginable. Once unloaded, ‘Mudbank,’ came home with me, where it eagerly with fish in buckets strewn all about the basement watched for me, ate from my hands, and remained intermingled with the trappings, the next feat was a cherished pet for years to follow. to sort through and set up the aquariums and get the fish placed in them. Mind you, I had never had 26

June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

a ‘real’ aquarium before! It is amazing to think back to the number of fish that actually survived! The overhang filters were filled with angel hair floss that sliced through your hand if not handled with care, as the media was actually made from the finest slivers of glass. There were boxes of loose charcoal, foil background papers embossed with circular swirls in blue, green, red, and gold, gravel in a wide assortment of brilliant colors of the rainbow, nets of all sizes, pumps, heaters, thermometers, and the incandescent lights that I still wish that I could revisit. There was something about those lights — the bulbs were red, blue, and green — I loved that! Oh, and then there were books. I loved the books. They were old and well-used with notes from another era, and held a delicious musty aroma of a time gone by. I dreamed of the person who had read these books before me, and hoped that I too could one day come to understand these fishes and their needs, just as my predecessor had. My brother’s attentions would soon go on to other creatures and facets of life, but I remained immersed in the affairs of the basement, and the fishes that now lived there. Among the lot, there were two blue gouramis, angelfish, black mollies, kissing gouramis, and I recall a beautiful male betta that I kept in a ten gallon tank. What did I know that bettas were to be kept in bowls? Once I realized which tankmates could be kept with him without bringing harm, this one seemed to flourish in all of his glory under the red incandescent light, with a huge expanse (from a betta’s perspective!) in which to swim. There was also an enormous, gorgeous male Jack Dempsey, and a female that was quite a bit smaller. It did not take long to find out that these two could not be kept in the same tank without providing lots of rockwork. Even at that, I am quite certain that the female’s life was not extensive, for I remember much more of the male than I do the female. With so much personality and his many intriguing habits, the Jack Dempsey became a mesmerizing fascination for me. Later in life, I owned a gift and jewelry store for many years. Starting out with one store, it was not long and one more adjacent store was added, and then another, until the original store went around the corner. By then my aquariums were spilling out from my office onto the selling floor. There was one more store left and so that became my ‘secret sanctuary’ — filled with fish! That fishroom was such a great joy to me! For twenty years of my life, more hours were spent at the store and greeting the public than were spent at home. I did love it so, but when I was not in sight, those who knew me well also knew that I had slipped away into the fishroom, Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

where I might well remain for hours, to emerge rejuvenated, with a particular inner peace as if holding some sort of secret, when the reality was that I had just changed water on a bank of tanks, or discovered that a certain fish had spawned, or their eggs had hatched, or the fry had taken their first food. I can tell you all of this, for I know that you understand exactly what I mean! The large inhabitants of a 65-gallon tank and a 110-gallon tank behind the jewelry counter were a great attraction for the men, and we would discuss fish while their wives looked at jewelry. It was not uncommon for me to come out of my office with bloodworms in one hand to feed the fish, and find myself showing a diamond ring or brooch to an interested customer with the other hand. I always did my best to hold the ‘bloodworm hand’ behind the mirror that sat on the countertop, and became quite dexterous at simultaneously performing the distinctly separate tasks. My better half, as well as members of the staff, would look up that way, and we would exchange a smile. All of the staff that is but for one, who just could not bear the thought of worms! This individual did not find it amusing at all! It took me some time to realize that this person was serious, and that my bags of any variety of worms or insects that might be left about were met with great angst. As soon as I did realize, I was more careful, but I must admit that it still brings a smile to this day. One tank held two immense oscars and four equally large Hoplarchus psittacus. The children came running in to see the fish, and year after year returned to visit their friends, and to see how much they had grown. I picked the children up and we ‘fed’ the fish together, while at the same time explaining to Dad how the wet/dry filtration worked, and how it only got better with years of age and bacterial growth. In between speaking with Dad, I did my best to show Mom, through her children’s eyes, what an exciting world could be opened up with the addition of an aquarium. Keeping a stock of TFH magazines in the office, as well as several copies of an excellent book for beginner aquarists, I gave these out to children and adults alike who showed that extra spark of interest. People came back in, or wrote to me years later to tell me that they had started up their own aquariums, and how they remembered when... Some days we would go on an adventure into my secret sanctuary, where the children’s eyes became wide with wonder and delight at the rows of aquariums and fish. As I moved the tall ladders about and gave them the tour of the continents, Dads seemed to enjoy it as much as their children. Moms often gave way to the heat and humidity and stood outside!

June 2007


If we can each take a moment to view the world through a child’s eyes, and from the realization that we gain by doing so, give our young people the opportunity to experience fish, so that they too may grow to appreciate the beauties found in nature. Undoubtedly they will do the same, and continue to pass it along to future generations, bettering the earth for both humans and fish. Ten years ago, while attending an NEC convention, I saw my plant friends, Vince and Rose Sileo, who told me of an extraordinary fish show and auction weekend that was coming up at the Marriott Hotel in Queens, New York in celebration of the 75th anniversary of the Greater City Aquarium Society. I was so excited and had to find out all about it and what could I do, and what could I bring? Learning of a natural aquarium display, and with the auction to follow the next day, my mind went into full gear and the answer came to me. Once home, the weeks that followed found the living room filled with rocks, gravel, and other assorted decor, along with a very patient spouse(!), as I practiced setting up my natural aquarium. The remainder of this story remains for another day, but suffice it to say that one of the most special moments of my life was on May 22nd 1997, when, with arms filled with buckets, gravel, rocks, jugs of tap water, filter, heater, and fish (Pseudotropheus demasoni), I walked into the Marriott Hotel and straight into the arms of President Joe Ferdenzi (yes, he was President then, too!), Warren Feuer, Mark Soberman, Al and Sue Priest, Bernie Harrigan, Tom Bohme, and all of the GCAS! As so many of us have, I knew that I had discovered home, and as they say, the rest is history! Heartfelt thanks to Susan Priest, who created this wonderfully innovative column, giving us each an opportunity to reminisce, and to share each other’s stories.



hen yo u g a t h e r together your “favorites,” your “fantasies,” and your “memories,” what have you got? Undoubtedly you are saturating yourself in fun! Many of our Evelyn Eagan members who have already been anonymous fishkeepers have testified to the fact that it was easy and fun. Our autobiographer for April is one of them. In fact, I didn’t ask her—she came right out and told me! My personal favorite answers have been to the question “Describe your biggest fishkeeping “blooper.” When we are forgetful, careless, misguided, or just plain unlucky, the consequences will quite often become our most enlightening lessons. Perhaps they are also our most memorable learning experiences, as we had to learn them the hard way. Whatever the circumstances, they make for some interesting and educational reading. I personally have never used an undergravel filter, and based on the experience of our April author, I don’t expect that I ever will. I thank her for sharing that story, along with all of the others she chose for us. Speaking of our April author, I believe it is time for me to reveal her identity. We have known that it was one of our leading ladies right from her first sentence. That doesn’t narrow the field as much as it does in some other clubs, but it eliminates all of the gentlemen right from the start. She is a regular participant in our monthly bowl shows, and Modern Aquarium often has a photo of her displaying the ribbons she has won. (She is very photogenic, don’t you think?) She is a member of other clubs in the area, and writes for other publications, but her smile is the biggest when she is at a GCAS meeting! By now you have guessed that it is our own Evelyn Eagan. (You may want to go back and re-read her bio from the April issue.)

June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

Sighting Cichlid Sites


onsidering how popular cichlids are in the aquarium hobby, it is no surprise that there are many websites devoted to, or having information about, cichlids. Many of these are commercial websites (that is, websites primarily set up to sell you something). While some commercial websites do have useful information, in general I prefer non-commercial sites, where information is less likely to be slanted to make a quick sale. Here are just some of what I think are the better websites for cichlid information: No overview of the information contained on Internet websites would be complete without mention of the website of the American Cichlid Association (ACA) at While several areas of the website require ACA membership before you can access them (e.g., the ACA Trading Post and the ACA Forum), even non-ACA members can browse the various galleries of cichlid photographs and make use of the helpful Cichlid Genera Pronunciation Guide. There is something about an angelfish that attracts even people like myself who do not keep other cichlids. The Angelfish Forum II website at “is dedicated to topics concerning the freshwater Angelfish (Pterophyllum scalare and Pterophyllum altum) including: Breeding Angelfish, Angelfish Care, Angelfish Diseases, and other aquatic topics.” This website is one every angelfish keeper should visit. The website (at, appropriately enough: has many excellent color photographs and hosts forums where you can go to post questions (and, hopefully, get answers) about the care and breeding of cichlids. While it does have some articles, and a small “buy, trade and sell” section, the claim by All Cichlids ( to being “The #1 resource for cichlid keeping” seems to be somewhat overstated. Nonetheless, it’s certainly worth a visit. Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

Billing itself as “The largest and most visited cichlid site on the web!” ( features a bi-monthly photo contest, a trading post, a discussion forum, an extensive library of articles (including some videos), product and retailer reviews, and more. The website of The Cichlid Fishes of Lake Malawi, Africa ( declares that it is “a scientifically oriented, noncommercial site devoted to a fascinating trove of tropical biodiversity — both the largest lake-fish fauna and the largest vertebrate species flock on earth — the cichlids of southeastern Africa’s Lake Malawi.” This website claims to have information on more than 415 species, with “800 pages, 1000 pictures, 1200 references, and 300 links.” Among many other things, this website features “a complete checklist of Lake Malawi's haplochromine genera and species that have been formally described, with the authorities who named them, the year they were described, a link to the complete bibliographic citation of the original description, often a link to a page with pictures at this site, and a few links to resources elsewhere on the Web.” This “Hap checklist” is accessible both by genus and species (alphabetically) and by color pattern. There is also a complete Mbuna checklist with all species formally described from Lake Malawi, again with the names, authorities, year described, bibliographic citation, usually a link to a picture page at this site, and any links to other notable Web resources. For those looking for information on African cichlids, is a resource for cichlids from the three major African rift lakes: Malawi, Tanganyika, and Victoria. This website contains a helpful gallery of over 500 photos, discussion forums, an “e-store” (from which you can purchase books in connection with, and articles. It also has a fun jigsaw puzzle (of an African cichlid, of course) that you can solve on-line.

June 2007


The Cichlid Research Homepage ( is maintained by Dr. Ron Coleman, PhD. The website describes itself as “A web site dedicated to collaboration between scientists and hobbyists interested in cichlid fishes (family Cichlidae), featuring extensive information about cichlids, plus the online science experiment known as the Cichlid Egg Project.” (The Cichlid Egg Project is an attempt to gather data on the egg size of fishes of the family Cichlidae by involving aquarists in an ongoing scientific investigation.) While there are some “dead” (i.e., outdated and no longer available) links, information that is available on, for example, "Introduction to Cichlids," "Frequently Asked Questions," "Glossary of terms," and "Anatomy" seems to be very useful and easy to understand. is a website that “aims to raise interest in wildlife and wild lands, while promoting awareness of environmental issues.” Although it is not a cichlid-specific website, it does have an excellent area devoted to cichlids (at While I have no doubt most of the cichlid keepers in our society knew about them, as an anabantoid specialist, I had not known (until I visited this website) that there were any Asian cichlids. Internet discussion groups are becoming increasingly popular. These groups are places where you can ask and/or answer questions and, depending on the rules of the group and its moderator, even buy and sell. Most groups are free and open to the public, but require registration. Once you are registered, you can select to receive messages sent to your e-mail address every time a new message is sent, once a day (with all e-mails sent that day rolled up into one large e-mail), or you can elect to have no e-mail sent to you (meaning that you will have to visit the group yourself to read any messages). I went to one of the most popular of the discussion group areas, which is “Yahoo Groups” at and I typed Cichlids into the “Find a Yahoo! Group” search field. Here are only some of the items on the first page that came up from that search, with excerpts from each group’s description in brackets. (Note, I said these were from the first search page — in total there were 99 pages of search results from the word Cichlid.)


african_cichlids [For all African Cichlid owners and lovers. We know how difficult these fish can be, but then their mannerisms and cute antics always gets us coming back for more! Come join the list and talk about the different species, their care, behaviour, and breeding. Pass on your experiences to new African Cichlid lovers!] southamericancichlids [This club is for anyone interested in South and Central American cichlids. All are welcome--hope to see you here!] sacsg

[This is the official discussion list for all members of South American Cichlids Study Group and fans of South American Cichlidae.] Cichlid_Trader [For those seeking to buy or sell cichlids] Africancichlids [For cichlid lovers everywhere. The emphasis of this group will be on Tanganyikan cichlids. Breeders, hobbists, or beginners all are welcome.] cichlids4sale [This is a list to sell or post want ads for Cichlids & Synodontis - all types. There are few rules and here they are: List of fish must include where you live, price, do you ship. There will be no flaming. There will be posting only for fish to sell. This is not a list to get info on fish. There are many other lists that do that. No selling of hybrid fish will be tolerated.] cichlids2 [a place where fellow aquarists can meet to discuss newly imported species and share tips on old ones. My interests lie primarily in keeping and breeding South and Central American, West African, Dwarf, Malagasy, and Rift Lake Cichlids. In addition to the aforementioned all fish related topics are welcome.] Cichlid_Chat [This club is to discuss Vicious Cichlids: Managuense, Jack Dempseys, Texas Cichlids, Oscars, any vicious cichlid. Even Africans are invited.]

June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

A Good Idea... At The Time

A series by “The Undergravel Reporter” In spite of popular demand to the contrary, this humor and information column continues. As usual, it does NOT necessarily represent the opinions of the Editor, or of the Greater City Aquarium Society.


aybe it was a lack of sleep, or a bad case of indigestion, or a little too much alcohol, or inhaling various substances, or maybe it was just a failure to think things through, but some not-so-great (and some really bad) ideas sometimes seem to be good ideas at the time. Do you have some fish who just won’t eat the food you give them? No matter how much you may want to encourage them to eat what you feed them, I strongly recommend that you not follow the example of Elaine Larabie of Ottawa, Ontario. To get her terrier, “Missy,” to eat dog food, Ms. Larabie decided to eat some of the food herself, in front of her dog. This seemed to be a good idea at the time, especially since Missy indeed began nibbling at the food after this demonstration. However, the next day, Larabie and Missy were both hospitalized, vomiting and foaming at the mouth. This was in March of this year, during the first days of the alert over tainted (and possibly even rat-poison-laced) pet food. While the doctors suspected that as the culprit in this case, no definitive conclusion was reached. (Both Ms. Larabie and Missy have since recovered.) [Montreal Gazette, 3-25-07] Remember the incident of a woman who thought smuggling tropical fish in bags concealed in an apron under her dress was a good idea (as reported in this column in November 2005)? Well, in March of this year, officials at the Gaza-Egypt border noticed that a Palestinian woman entering Gaza had a particularly lumpy upper body. Upon searching her, they found three small crocodiles strapped to her chest. She had intended to them sell to a zoo. Now that was a really bad idea! [Columbus Dispatch-AP, 3-26-07]

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

In trying to get sharks to mate, aquarists at an aquarium in England plan to pipe Beethoven, Mozart, and Puccini through speakers over the sharks’ open-topped tank. The sharks will be serenaded with classical greats such as Mozart’s “Romanze,” Puccini’s “Nessun Dorma,” and Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata.” (The aquarists are trying classical music after having failed to put the sharks “in the mood” with the love songs of the late soul singer Barry White.) This is apparently a result of a study at the Rowland Institute in Cambridge, Massachusetts, that found fish could hear and process melodies like human beings. But, that study only found that koi could be trained to hit a button for a food reward when classical music was played with the notes in correct order (as opposed to being played backward, or when no music was playing). [ 5/24/2007] recently reported that Mohamad Abou El-Nasr from the Arab Academy for Science and Technology won third place (and $2,000) at the Lantronix 2nd Annual Wireless Design Contest for his “Wi-Aquarium.” According to the description given, “the Wi-Aquarium allows users to remotely control and monitor their aquarium anytime from anywhere in the world. Users can monitor the fish via a camera, feed the fish, adjust the heater, turn the lights on and off, and control the filter. The device can even send an e-mail to the user with updated status ensuring an optimum aquarium environment and healthy fish.” (And no, you can’t send an e-mail to your fish!) I put this in the category of bad ideas because it gives the user the illusion of control, but is virtually useless for crisis intervention. The user cannot change water, remove a dead fish, isolate and medicate a sick fish, clear a clogged filter, or replace filter media. Anyone who would want to use this would probably be much better off with a fish-themed screensaver! Finally, a nearly-perfect example of what must have looked like a good idea at the time—but clearly wasn’t—happened ten years ago in New York City. Bul Lee, a South Korean artist, had an exhibition titled “Majestic Splendor” scheduled at the Museum of Modern Art for March of 1997. Lee’s exhibition consisted solely of rotting fish in sealed bags and glass cabinets. After only a few hours on display, this exhibition was abruptly pulled. The reason for the cancellation of this show: the museum’s ventilation equipment failed! (Not only a very bad idea—an undoubtedly smelly one as well.)

June 2007



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June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

G.C.A.S. HAPPENINGS Thank you, renewing members: Frank and Concetta Bonnici, and Warren Feuer

Last Month’s Bowl Show Winners: 1) Ed Vukich 2) Carlotti De Jager

3) Warren Feuer

Here are meeting times and locations of some aquarium societies in the Metropolitan New York area: GREATER CITY AQUARIUM SOCIETY Next Meeting; July 11, 2007 Speaker: Ed Vukich Topic: “Ed’s Fhishroom” 7: 30pm at The VFW Post 136-06 Horace Harding Expressway Flushing, NY 11367 Contact: Joseph Ferdenzi (516) 484-0944 E-mail: Website:

Brooklyn Aquarium Society July & August: No Summer Events Meets the 2nd Friday of the month (except July and August) at 7:30pm: NY Aquarium - Education Hall Surf Ave. at West 8th St., Brooklyn, NY Call: BAS Events Hotline: (718) 837-4455

East Coast Guppy Association

Big Apple Guppy Club

Meets: 1st Thursday of each month at Alley Pond Environmental Ctr.: 228-06 Northern Blvd. at 8:00 pm Contact: Gene Baudier (631) 345-6399

Meets: Last Tuesday each month (except Jan. & Feb.) at Alley Pond Environmental Ctr.: 228-06 Northern Blvd. at 7:30-10:00pm. Contact: Donald Curtin (718) 631-0538

Long Island Aquarium Society

Nassau County Aquarium Society

Next Meeting: June 15, 2007 Speaker: Charles Riggio Topic: Guppies

July & August: Summer Break, no meetings

Meets: 3rd Fridays (except July and August) at Holtsville Park and Zoo at 8:00pm. 249 Buckley Road - Holtsville, NY Website: Email: Arie Gilbert -

North Jersey Aquarium Society

Meets: 2nd Tuesday of each month at the American Legion Post 1066 - 66 Veterans Blvd. - Massapequa, NY at 8:00pm. Contact: Mike Foran (516) 798-6766 Website:

Norwalk Aquarium Society

Next Meeting: June 28, 2007 Speaker: Mark Soberman Topic: “African Catfish”

Next Meeting: June 21, 2007 Speaker: Mo Devlin "Today in the Fish Room" or his Mexico Trip

Meadowlands Environmental Center - One Dekorte Plaza - Lyndhurst, NJ

Meets: 8:00 P.M. - 3rd Thursday of each month at: Earthplace - the Nature Discovery Center - Westport, CT

Contact: NJAS Hotline at (732) 332-1392 Website: or e-mail:

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

Contact: John Chapkovich (203) 734-7833 E-mail: Call our toll free number (866) 219-4NAS Website:

June 2007


Fin Fun The newest author in the world of tropical fish literature is in very good company, indeed. Simply draw a connecting line between each title and its author.



Cichlids of the World

Dr. Paul V. Loiselle

The Cichlid Fishes

Claudia Dickinson

The Cichlid Aquarium

Hans-Joachim Richter

The Complete Book of Dwarf Cichlids

Dr. Robert Goldstein

Cichlids From Central America

Mary Sweeney

South American Cichlids

Dr. Wayne S. Leibel

Aquarium Care of Cichlids

Dr. George Barlow

The Cichlid: An Owner’s Guide

David Boruchowitz

Central American Cichlids

Ad Konings

The Guide To Owning Malawi Cichlids

David Sands

Solution to last month’s puzzle:


June 2007

Modern Aquarium - Greater City A.S. (NY)

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