Re: NANFA-- Re: Steffen's remarks

Steffen Hellner (
Thu, 18 Sep 2003 19:36:48 +0200

Yes I do, but we don4t have many nice species over here. Two species of
sticklebacks, one bitterling (Rhodeus), one dace (Phoxinus phoxinus),
another very small whitefish "Moderlieschen". All other grow way too big or
require oxygen levels one cannot offer with reasonable technique. And as I
don4t have a fishing license I am not allowed to collect them, despite the
fact that there are very few left. You can buy most of them at petshops,
they are raised in big numbers for ponds (Rhodeus and Phoxinus). The
sticklebacks not that much. I care for them as wild fish and try to help
them going, e.g. I announce populations I find to the conservancy
authorities, last I did so with the kind of sculpins we have over here. I am
more engaged in our amphibians and keep fire salamanders, started a
monitoring project for a certain population, have some species of european
newts and try to get more species from known locations. Am cooperating with
our supreme conservancy (one above county level).

We face the problems that biotopes are lost but most species are present at
hatcheries (an information I found just recently when researching it) and
many are in ponds. Frankly I must say that I am bound to colors and
reproduction biology. I plan to put in some Rhodeus (from the wild - don4t
tell around!;-) into one of my ponds. Maybe some ninespine sticklebacks too,
less probably some threespine as well. They like flowing waters, little
creeks and are not that suitable for a pond. And they are very aggressive.
The other native fishes we have are of no interest for me despite their good
taste. Fishermen and administration care for them (not too much but they
do). I am aquarist down to the roots. Therefore I am not at all interested
in humpbacks or trouts even if they are spectacular fishes in one or the
other way.

I know from here I cannot do much to help you preserve your own species, but
I am fascinated by many species4 color and/or ethology. Thus I like to keep
them and make them accessable for aquarists over here. And of course, e.g.
welaka, hubbsi or cardinals, it4s a challenge to breed these species and by
this possibly help to take of a bit of the collection pressure. That4s all,
not much but more than nothing. We don4t have fishes like darters or madtoms
here, only some sunfish and catfish invaders - literally everywhere.