My First Fish Show!

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starsplitter7
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Location: Tampa, Florida

My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Mon Feb 07, 2011 1:13 am

My fish club puts on a yearly fish show at the Florida State Fair. This is really cool, because thousands of people get to see our fish and fish from around the community. They learn about the club, Tampa Bay Aquarium Society, and they learn about the hobby. Members hang out near the tanks to answer questions and promote the club. I have gone for years, and admired the fish and now I know a lot of the people who have the fish. That is really cool. :) I am entering a tank this year, and thought I would post pictures of the progress. Unfortunately, I forgot my camera yesterday while I was setting up. My tank is a catfish and snail tank called "Cool Cats". I wanted to bring loaches, but I was afraid they wouldn't handle the fair environment well, because there are so many people. And I only brought in a 20 and most of my loaches are too big. Most of these catfish in the tank are juveniles. Oh my goodness, is it a lot of work getting setting up. They will be at the show for 17 days total, 11 of those days will be open to the public.

Getting Ready for the Show (Mine is second from the left)
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More Preparations
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Getting Ready
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My tank is on the right. Next to Hank's tank on the left. His tanks are amazing, beautiful, well planted and he has a horde of happy, healthy fish that breed like crazy for him. Why am I next next to him? :) I shove the plants in the ground and wait for the catfish to pull them up. Note all the river rock which is intended to be plant anchors. More than half of the picture got cut off when I uploaded it?
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My Tank -- Cool Cats! How many catfish and snails do you see? :) I see 3 of each in the picture. I hope people understand the purpose of the tank. The red lizards are really cool. :)
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Here's what's in the tank.
5 C. sterbai (Sterbai Cory)
3 C. pygmaeus (Pygmy Cory)
1 A. adonis (3" Adonis Catfish)
2 Ancistrus (Bristlenose 3" female and 4" male mated pair)
1 Hoplo Cat (1.5" -- no idea the species)
2 Glass Cats (2.5")
5 Rineloricaria sp. (Red Lizard Catfish 2.5")
1 Peckoltia sp. (2.5")
3 Otociclus
1 Farlowela

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Mad Duff
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Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by Mad Duff » Mon Feb 07, 2011 5:23 am

Nice tanks :D

My old club used to do something similar at a local agricultural show and the local library, these events were usually a month or so before our open show which gave us quite a bit of publicity and brought a few new people to the hobby.
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Pardon my honesty - I am a Northerner

14 loach species bred, which will be next?

starsplitter7
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Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:04 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:05 am

I've never seen a fish show, but I think using the fair is a great idea, because of the exposure. It never occured to me that other clubs did the same thing, but it makes sense. I'll post more pictures over the next few days. Today they will have the Board of Directors meeting there tonight, and there should be more tanks set up. And I'll post the winning tanks when they are determined. :)

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Jim Powers
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Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by Jim Powers » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:18 pm

Cool! 8)
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zenins
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Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by zenins » Mon Feb 07, 2011 10:04 pm

That is a great opportunity for exposure of your club.

I hope a few new members are a result of the show committee's work :)

I really like your Red Lizard Catfish. I had some in the past, but I could not get them to spawn.
I have not seen them at auctions since that time.

What are the dates of the show ?
Zenin

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starsplitter7
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Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:04 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Mon Feb 07, 2011 10:58 pm

We started set up on Saturday the 5th. It opens on the 10th, lasts til the 21st and we break down on the 22nd. I also have a carnivorous plant entered (won first place) and a painting. :) I was informed by a club member that I would be in better shape if I put on a background, so tomorrow I go out for a background. I have never liked backgrounds, but at the fair it hides the the cords and bubblers.

Thank you. I am very fond of my Red lIzards too. When they are adults I will attempt to breed them. Hope I have males and females. :) I really love these fish. Peaceful, pretty, interesting. A friend took pictures tonight, so I'll post them when she gets them my way.

Therese
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Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2010 9:55 pm
Location: Lantana, Florida, USA

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by Therese » Wed Feb 09, 2011 8:19 am

The tanks look really great...I might try to go...but it would be on final weekend (2/19)...in Tampa right, could you give address and times?

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Barracuda518
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Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by Barracuda518 » Wed Feb 09, 2011 6:35 pm

Very Nice :mrgreen:

Any luck getting the C. sterbai to spawn?

starsplitter7
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Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Wed Feb 09, 2011 7:29 pm

I think my Sterbais are too young to breed, but I would love them to breed when they are a bit older. :) A friend of mine got C. pygmies at the auction on the 22nd, and they are spawning this week.

starsplitter7
Posts: 5054
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:04 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Wed Feb 09, 2011 11:20 pm

Here's a link to pictures taken by our VP. Mine Tanks are pictures 12 and 13. :) Catfish and snails. :) I am still going through my pictures.

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=3 ... &aid=36171

Check out the sea horses in picture 18. They have laid eggs since the picture was taken. :)

The Australian Biotope River tank in 19 and 20 is amazing.

I have never seen Axolotl in person before. I definitely want a tank for these now. How can someone call them grotesque? I watched them for 20 minutes mesmorized, watched their gills. Amazing and beautiful and the legs looks like double legs.
http://www.axolotl.org/

They are in the first couple pages.

Tanks were judged today, so I will take a look and see who placed.

cider
Posts: 130
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Location: CT USA

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by cider » Thu Feb 10, 2011 12:19 am

very cool, thanks for showing us ! nice job , G
cider

glenna
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Location: Sanford, NC

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by glenna » Thu Feb 10, 2011 8:44 pm

That looks like so much fun.
BAck when I lived in Louisville, KY, there was always a HUGE aquarium display at the state fair. It has been years since I have been back at the right time to make it to the KY state fair, but if anyone is around at that time ( i think early to mid Aug), it was always a real treat to see that many different tanks (both salt and fresh) in the same place.
I am looking forward to seeing some more photos.
glenna

starsplitter7
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Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:04 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Thu Feb 10, 2011 8:51 pm

They did the judging last night and the tanks are all ready and beautiful. I took lots of pictures and will post them when I dig through all the blurry ones. :)

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Francois van Brederode
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Location: Alkmaar (North Holland)

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by Francois van Brederode » Tue Feb 15, 2011 5:27 am

I am not a big fan of events such as this. (I do see de positive side of it)
As they do interfere with the fishes lives very much.
Moving them here and there, having lots an lots of flash photography taken.
Not having the well established tank they would like.

However your tanks do look great for the inhabitants.
They can hide from any nosy audiance and flashes.
I am afraid that your tank will not get as much atention as these natural and fish-friendly tanks deserve.
Not seeing the fish just doesn't interest people as much, but who cares if the fish are happy :)
Pardon my English, I'm from Holland....

starsplitter7
Posts: 5054
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2007 11:04 pm
Location: Tampa, Florida

Re: My First Fish Show!

Post by starsplitter7 » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:51 am

These tanks are well established. My tank has been established for 2 years. Considering that the fish are world travelers (to get from the fish farms to our LFS), moving them 1/2 hour from my home doesn't cause them very many problems. This area of Florida is the fish farm capital of the US. The number one export of the Tampa International Airport is tropical fish.

The value in a show like this is education. Members of the club attend the tanks and answer questions, correct myths that people have, explain how to set up planted tanks and provide correct housing for the fish, . . . Education in the US for the fish hobby is very important, because for the most part our LFS can provide no information. New people to the hobby struggle trying to cycle their tank, struggle picking the right fish for the right environment, . . . the job of the LFS is to sell fish, so they sell fish that incompatible and they sell fish to people with new tanks. The fish die, they buy more fish and the LFS is happy. Unfortunately, the fish hobby is failing in the US, as more and more people get frustrated and drop out. Our club hopes to encourage people to enjoy the hobby through education and by seeing what beautiful tanks can look like.

At this show there are seahorses, angel fish and cichlids breeding at the show, so their stress levels can't be too high. I take pictures of my fish all the time, so they are used to flash. I had a cichlid once who would pose for the camera. You pulled out a camera, he swam to the front of the tank. He faced front, faced to the side, faced to the other side, pushed the other fish out of the way, so he could hog the camera. He was a character.

When I attend the fair, I draw people's attention to my tank and show them the catfish. There are mostly planted tanks at this show. The tank next to mine has 3 goldfish and is a child's tank, and people are drawn to the goldfish. Next year I will make sure I don't set up next to goldfish. :)

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