Spring has SPRUNG! Speaker & Swap info!

Our April meeting will be on Friday, April 20th at 6:30 PM.  Our speaker will be John Lyons, his talk will be “Conservation of the Mexican Goodeid livebearers: the critical role of the aquarium hobbyist”.  John is a fish biologist and ichthyologist with over 32 years of experience. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from Union College, Schenectady, NY, and his Master of Science and Ph.D. degrees in Zoology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Currently, he serves as the Curator of Fishes at the University of Wisconsin Zoological Museum and as a Fisheries Research Supervisor for the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, both in Madison. As curator, he has conducted conservation-oriented work on freshwater fishes throughout Mexico since 1986. A long-term focus has been the goodeid fishes and their associates in central Mexico. He serves as the Chair of the North American branch of the Goodeid Working Group (NAGWG), and is an honorary member of the Mexican Ichthyological Society (SIMAC). He is extremely proud to have had a goodeid recently named after him, Xenotoca lyonsi.

The first half hour is for introductions and catching up.  Doors close and our speaker will begin as promptly at 7 as is possible. During the presentation, please  be respectful of the other attendees, as well as the speaker and take any private discussions to the bar, only exit through the rear of the room, and please silence your phones. 

Before all of that, we’ll have a swap, on April 15th.  The swap will begin at 10 (No early admissions) in our new format “Now with Herps!”  Our swap has been expanded to include some tables devoted to reptile enthusiasts.  We will take the entire room for this swap, all of us under one roof.  For admission of only $2, we’re well on our way to being fully booked, 37 tables of non-stop shopping for your Sunday.  The posted end time is 2PM, but people tend to sell out, so earlier is better.

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Book your rooms for FISH BOWL 2018

We have a new venue, and this year it’ll all be under one roof! We’re moving on up to the Radisson Menomonee Falls (A few minutes north and west of Milwaukee proper, but really a nice establishment, and parking is free).
Hotel, restaurant, conference, pool, one stop shopping!  We have a block of rooms reserved at a special rate of $109 for our members (Book through the link below).  Note the dates will default to the 12th, you can change it to what nights you want, but please click carefully.

We’ve got three speakers lined up already, and a few in negotiations, Chris Biggs, Rusty Wessel, and Heather Burke are all locked in for out October festivities.

FishBowl 2018

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March 2018 Speaker – Josh Wiegert

Joshua Wiegert is a well known aquarium author and speaker, having penned the “Conservation Corner” in FAMA and later AFI for many years.

More recently, he is the author of the Bottom of the Tank in Tropical Fish Hobbyist. His feature articles have been included in many magazines over the years, and he has traveled throughout the US and beyond speaking at various aquarium clubs.

He is best known, however, as the owner of Batfish Aquatics and is a solid fixture at large aquarium conventions. With Batfish Aquatics, he imports and sells a large variety of unusual aquarium fishes.

His talk will be on Plecos for the Planted Aquarium.

The first half hour is for introductions and catching up.  Doors close and our speaker will begin as promptly at 7 as is possible. During the presentation, please  be respectful of the other attendees, as well as the speaker and take any private discussions to the bar, only exit through the rear of the room, and please silence your phones. 

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Okay, you marine folks, you asked for it…

February’s meeting will be Friday, February 16th at 6:30 PM.  Our speaker is Kris Schmidt, on loan to us from the People’s Republic of Madison for one night only.  He studied horticulture at UW-Madison.  His talk will be on Ornamental Marine Aquaculture.  Kris will speak on a variety of clown fish, breeding marine fish, and the business aspects of Aquaculture.   Get there early, we had to bring in extra chairs last month.

We’ve actually had quite a few great speakers on marine topics, here it is.  Show up in numbers and prove it was a good idea.  We’re not strictly about freshwater fish-keeping.

The first half hour is for introductions and catching up.  Doors close and our speaker will begin as promptly at 7 as is possible. During the presentation, please  be respectful of the other attendees, as well as the speaker and take any private discussions to the bar, only exit through the rear of the room, and please silence your phones. 

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Happy New Year!

Our speaker for January will be Douglas Sweet.

Doug has been a fish hobbyist for 45 years. He started with a goldfish bowl, then a ten-gallon tank, a dozen tanks, and finally culminating in 42 fish tanks in a “fish room” at his previous residence. Doug is most fond of domesticated fishes such as Siamese fighting fish and fancy goldfish. He also has a long term passion for finding the spawning triggers of kuhli loaches.
Doug’s previous position (for 19 years) was Curator of Fishes for the Belle Isle Aquarium-Detroit Zoological Institute. He oversaw the breeding and rearing of more than thirty-six species of endangered fishes including: Mexican Goodeids, pupfishes, Lake Victorian Haplochromines, and some southwestern U.S. imperiled species. He also became involved in freshwater mussel conservation and culture; conducted freshwater mussel surveys in southeastern Michigan; and propagation trials of several native freshwater mussels (fat-muckets, lilliputs, purple lilliputs and wavy-rayed lamp mussels).
When it comes to angling, Doug considers himself still a “kid”, preferring the action of bluegill and other pan-fish on hook and line in the spring.

His talk: Spawning Anguilliform (eel shaped) Loaches – or NOT!

The first half hour is for introductions and catching up.  Doors close and our speaker will begin as promptly at 7 as is possible. During the presentation, please  be respectful of the other attendees, as well as the speaker and take any private discussions to the bar, oh, and please silence your phones. 

 

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November Meeting Wrapup

Thanks VERY much for a great talk from our speaker Rick Borstein last night, don’t forget, he’s speaking in Madistan today, 60 tips in 43 minutes, from what I heard.
Also, thank you from the whole club to our outgoing board members Tim Pilat, Brian Torreano, and Don Hinske. That means new blood, please everyone welcome and congratulate our newest board members:
VP Elect – Alissa Peitscher Kiedrowski
Secretary Elect – Connie Schnick Smith
Member At Large Elect – Lucky Frost (Roy to his friends).

Hope to see a lot of you at the Christmas party December 3rd. Last night was the final chance to sign up, but if you’re a paid member, and interested in attending, PM me and I’ll see what I can do.

Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday,
Rock (Still the Prez, no coup last night)

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One more meeting this year, welcome to November

Our October meeting will be Friday, November 17th at 6:30 PM at the New Berlin Ale House.  Nominations for the 2018 Board are in, and the elections will be held at this meeting.

Our speaker for our October meeting is Rick Borstein.  Rick Borstein is the Webmaster of the Greater Chicago Cichlid Association (GCCA), President of the Chicago Livebearer Society (CLS) and President of the Federation of American Aquarium Societies (FAAS). Rick was the Chairman of the successful 2006 American Cichlid Association Convention held in Chicago, IL. Rick has spawned over 225 species of cichlids and is one of only fourteen people to hold the title of Master Breeder in the GCCA. Rick’s basement fish room has 44 tanks ranging in size from 5 gallons to 240 gallons. Rick is primarily interested in cichlids and livebearers.

Please stick around after the meeting, we have the room, and would love to catch up with fellow members and prospective members over dinner and drinks.

The first half hour is for introductions and catching up.  Doors close and our speaker will begin as promptly at 7 as is possible. During the presentation, please  be respectful of the other attendees, as well as the speaker and take any private discussions to the bar, oh, and please silence your phones. 

 

 

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October General Meeting! (Oh, there’s an auction too)

Want to know what this month’s presentation will be?  Well, you get to chime in and help us decide!

Our October meeting will be Friday, October 20th at 6:30 PM at the New Berlin Ale House.  We will have an auction just two days later at the same venue (other side of the building).  Nominations for the 2018 Board will also be accepted, as this meeting is the deadline.  Elections will be held at our November meeting.

Our speaker for our October meeting is Mike Hellweg. Mike has been fascinated by fishes all his life, and has had various fishes as pets since he could barely reach the top of the goldfish bowl; he has been successfully breeding and trading fish with local shops since he was 9 years old.

Over the past four decades plus he has specialized mainly in miniature fishes, and has had successful spawns from various miniature fishes totaling over 400 species from 32 families of fish.  He currently owns a small fish hatchery and maintains about 3000 gallons divided into 100 tanks.  He is the top ranked breeder of all time in the Missouri Aquarium Society, Inc. (MASI) BAP and the top ranked aquatic horticulturist of all time in MASI’s HAP with over 300 submissions from 50 families, including more than a dozen by seed.  He is an ALA Century Breeder, with over 100 species of Livebearers spawned.  He credits his success to large regular water changes, keeping live plants in every tank and culturing and feeding an assortment of live foods daily for feeding his breeding stock and for growing the fry of these diverse fish.

Over the past three plus decades, Mike has given well over 325 talks to classes, clubs, groups and conventions all over the USA and Canada, has documented many of his keeping and spawning successes in over 300 articles published in hobby publications around the world, and he has had two books on live foods published by TFH Publications.

Based on a popular vote, his presentation will be:
Wild Livebearers – More than just the Retail “Big Four”

Please stick around after the meeting, we have the room, and would love to catch up with fellow members and prospective members over dinner and drinks.

The first half hour is for introductions and catching up.  Doors close and our speaker will begin as promptly at 7 as is possible. During the presentation, please  be respectful of the other attendees, as well as the speaker and take any private discussions to the bar, oh, and please silence your phones. 

 

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2018 MAS Board Nominations coming up!

Anyone considering throwing your hat in the ring for the 2018 board, please either be in attendance at the October meeting, or notify Rock Smith so that we can get you on the ballot.

I will outline what board positions are or may become available, and what would be expected of you, should you choose to run and win the seat.

The board meets one week before the monthly meetings, usually in the evening.  We’ve been doing the Thursday 8 days before the meeting, but are flexible to accommodate the schedules of the board members.  Board members are expected to attend as many meetings as are possible.  We try to get the dates set up early in the year, so they’re on everyone’s calendars, and if scheduling conflicts arise, we try to work around them when and if we can.  You won’t get kicked off the board for missing a meeting for your surgery or a kid’s dance recital, but I think you get the picture.

Board meetings are held at the home of a board member, that calendar gets locked down when we’re selecting the dates.  A light meal and beverages are provided by the host.  The host gets $50 from the club for hosting and providing the food.  You don’t need to account for every penny, but don’t give out Ramen and water bottles and expect to be hosting much 😊.  The host usually shows off their tanks/fish room subsequently.  NOTE: If you will not be comfortable hosting, don’t let that prevent you from joining the board.  There are plenty of us who can pick up any slack, needs be.

The meetings usually take between 2 and 3 hours, depending on how many times we get sidetracked, and how much is on the agenda to be discussed.  We need at least 4 board members present for a quorum, so we will usually send out an email the week before confirming everyone’s attendance.  If we won’t have enough for a quorum, we will reschedule, but we try hard to avoid that, as the club’s business needs to be handled.

The board positions and their responsibilities (roughly speaking):

President – Face of the club, runs general meetings, sends out crap like this.  To be eligible, must have been a member of the board the preceding year

Vice President – Backup of President, potential alternative views, no requirement of prior board membership.

Treasurer – Handles the accounting for the club, including payment of speakers, collection of dues and fees, the voice of the pocketbook. To be eligible, must have been a member of the board the preceding year

Secretary – Records meeting notes, both at board meetings and general meetings.

Sergeant at Arms – Keeper of the peace, facilitator of meetings

Member at Large (2) – No direct responsibilities, but are encouraged to participate in club initiatives (CARES, BAP, HAP, PAP, Fish Bowl)

Of the members of the present board, the following have expressed interest (but this is tentative, so don’t be shy)

President – Rock Smith will be running, as yet unopposed

Vice President – Andy Hudson will be running, as yet unopposed

Treasurer – Tim will be stepping down from the board, but will remain a member of the club.  Brian Torreano has indicated he would like to run for this board position.

Secretary – Brian Torreano will be stepping down as Secretary, and will run for Treasurer.

Sergeant at Arms – Tony Snell has indicated he would like to continue in this role

Members at Large Don Hinske & Aaron Glass– have both indicated a willingness to continue in this role, but Don indicated he would step down to make way for new blood, should someone express interest, and be willing to arm-wrestle him for it.

So, in a nutshell, we will definitely be looking for a Secretary, and if someone wants to bump Don from the board, he’s game.  None of the positions are guaranteed, if you want to step up and run for one of the eligible positions, competition is a good thing.  Please note that according to our club constitution, the positions of President and Treasurer require standing as a board member, all other positions are eligible, should you wish to run.

When I have definitive answers from the existing board, I will spread the word.  I will also publish this information to the general club membership, in case there is someone who is a member of the club who might have interest, but were not on our collective radar.

Thanks in advance, and I look forward to hearing from you and answering any questions you might have,

Rock
President, Milwaukee Aquarium Society

 

 

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September – There is no meeting

For those of you who I haven’t reached with this message, tell your friends, they will find it weird, but tell them anyway.  September we are skipping our meeting in deference to MAAH’s Cataclysm.  We encourage you to attend, and spend some of your fish dollars, but maybe save a couple for the upcoming Auction October 22nd here in town.

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