Regarding bringing fishes home by air, my suggestion would be to contact
the airline you're flying well before your trip...which means right away. If
they tell you by phone that it's okay, I would further suggest that you ask them
to send you a letter saying so (by fax, if you have access to a fax machine, as
all airline reservation people use the fax many times every day).
One thing I can tell you from personal experience is that Southwest was very
difficult, near impossible even before the 11 September '02 disaster. I say
"near" because I managed to beat the system. In March of '01 I flew to
Daytona Beach for Motorcycle Speed Week, did some collecting, then tried
to carry a 3 gallon jug of fishes to the plan with me. I was stopped at the
x-ray machine, advised that no "live animals" were permitted on board any
Southwest flight. I protested, eventually going back to the ticket counter where
I demanded to speak with whomever was in charge. That worthy finally
appeared, and no matter how hard I protested he said there was No Way.
So I told him I was going to pour the fishes down the nearest toilet, and stormed
off. But instead, I went to one of the airport shops and bought a small duffle
bag just large enough to hold the jug. I made sure I went to another line, of
course, and sailed right through. So I assume Southwest is still a No-No.
As you say you plan to bring home only 3 or 4 fishes, if it were me I would
consider just putting them in a quart bottle or even smaller, just for the airplane
flight. They should make it okay. A better suggestion would be to put a small
number of fishes in a Kordon "Breathing Bag" which should more or less guarantee
that they would make it through the trip just fine. I bought a supply from Kordon a
few months ago (item #50100 at http://www.petsforum.com/novalek/klistfr.htm).
I phoned and talked the nice woman at their order office into selling me a
"small quantity" of 100 bags, rather than the 5,000 (!) shown on their webpage.
If you send me your address, I'll be happy to mail you some. They work really
great. Instructions for use are printed right on the bags.
I keep a folder on my PC of collecting reports people post on the NANFA list
from time to time, organized by state. Attached are the only four I have for the
state of Florida.
Note that #4 includes the e-mail addresses of Harry Specht, who lives in Sarasota
(AUS62_at_aol.com) and Doug Dame of Interlaken (dameda at shands.ufl.edu).
Both should be able to give you some useful pointers.
I also suggest you get in touch with Charlie Nunziata, who has been a great help
to me on my Florida collecting trips. He lives in the Tampa Bay area, and is a
member of NANFA. Charlie's e-mail address, which is on attachment #1, is
epiplaty_at_tampabay.rr.com. If you contact him, if copies of the Florida Collection
Guide, Suncoast Killifish Society, is still available. It's a great resource
lots of specific information, plus color photos of many interesting and colorful
located in Florida waters. It goes for $20 and in my opinion is worth every penny.
I'm sure you'll have a great time, as the collecting is great in that part of the
country. You don't mention where you live, so maybe it's great where you
are as well. It's not good at all here in the Santa Barbara area, unfortunately.
I hope this helps.
Santa Barbara CA
* * * * *
Date: Thu, 9 Jan 2003 22:25:51 -0500
From: "Wade Hedgren" <hedgreww_at_hotmail.com>
Subject: NANFA-- Florida Collecting Questions
I am planning trip to Florida in mid February (Sarasota & Ft. Myers)...
Does anyone know of good collecting area near there? I like smaller species
(darters, killifish) and will only be taking a few fish (3 or 4).
I will be flying and I was wondering if anyone has taken a bag of fish on
the plane with them [post 9-11]?
I took a few specimens home on the plane in a 2 liter bottle a few years ago
with no problems. But I'm not sure how that would go over now...
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