Cautiously Optimistic

We are cautiously optimistic as things stand right now. While the number of people vaccinations in the U.S. has dramatically increased over the last month, COVID numbers are again on the rise. Chances are this can be contributed to the change in weather along with families on spring break. We hope everyone is staying safe during these times and please consider getting the vaccine.

On the horizon, there are many upcoming fish events including: the Greater Pittsburgh Aquarium Society Inc. Swap, the Northeast Council (NEC) Virtual Convention, the Youngstown Area Tropical Fish Society (YATFS) Auction, the American Killifish Association (AKA) Convention and the American Cichlid Association (ACA) Convention. Only the NEC event is virtual so you now have a chance at attending all the other events in person! Fingers crossed that these events can proceed.

Lastly, a few folks have asked about shipping. Right now it just is impractical to offer this service. If you wish to obtain fish from us, the best way is by meeting at a fish event or porch pickup. Please feel free to email us if you have further questions. Thanks!

Spring Time

It is almost the end of February, where is the year going? It is starting to feel like spring. Just within the last week, temperatures are pushing near 60F! With the amount of snow we have had this winter, it is a welcome change. Hopefully things continue to change and improve with a third vaccine now available. We are hopeful that the worst is behind us.

Speaking of which, today marks six months since Jeremy’s appendicitis operation. The operation did not go quite as planned. It has been a long road to recovery. There are still a few issues but the worst is hopefully behind him, fingers crossed!

With spring approaching and virus numbers coming down, we are glad to see some fish events that have been planned. That said, we still believe that online meetings will continue to be the norm until the vaccine is widely available. From there, we hope that things will begin to slowly open up including, perhaps, the opportunity to travel. Only time will tell and we must all continue to play things safe and follow the guidelines that have been laid out.

Perhaps the largest event coming up the Greater Cincinnati Aquarium Society’s (GCAS) Swap Meet. All of the tables for this event are sold out! While we did not secure a table, we hope everyone enjoys this In-Person event. For details, please visit the GCAS website: http://www.gcas.org. Unfortunately, a few In-Person events have been cancelled including L Number Days in Germany and InterZoo. We hope that other events towards the end of the year will still happen but things are not overly promising at this moment.

A quick moment about  Facebook. While many would state that there is a lot of misinformation on the website, it also has provided perhaps the most up to date information on new species being described by scientists and in some regards, real time scientific discoveries. We hope to continue sharing such discoveries on our Facebook page. For the most current updates, I would recommend visiting our Facebook Group page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/AmazonTropics

Lastly, many have asked for an updated fish list. Due to the weather conditions, shipping delays and healthy issues, we feel it best to continue to offer porch pickup only. In time, we hope to start attending fish events again. So stay tuned and stay safe! In the meantime, here are some photos of plants from our 2010 Peru trip to Madre de Dios.

Calathea ornata
Monstera dubia
Shingling Philodendron
Unknown Twin Lobed Plant
Unknown Vining Plant

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year! Or at least we are hoping for a better year than last. And while this year has had a rough start, there is reason to be hopeful for the future. While these are trying times, there could be stability soon enough.

It has been a month since our last post and we thought it was time to share some updates. Hopefully, if all goes well, we will see everyone in WI for the catfish friendly event Cataclysm. There we hope to share details from our last trip, some new thoughts on woodcatfish and so much more! We are also planning to bring some fish including some special rarities. More details will be forthcoming so stay tuned to here and visit the Cataclysm webpage at: https://catfish-cataclysm.com/

One last update before we go, we have been having some success with the raising of several woodcats. We are happy to report that we have F1 Duringlanis altae, D. perugiae, D. romani, Tatia reticulata and F2 T. strigata coming up. With any luck, we will have some others soon. The hope is to start producing enough to get them into the hands of other avid aquarists. While everyone is crazy for plecos (we are too!), it is nice to see some other cats in our aquariums. We leave you with a sneak peak of one of the offspring coming up.

Happy Holidays

Happy Holidays everyone! While this year draws to a close, there is a lot to be thankful for despite all of the challenges. A big thank you again for those that reached out to us. While still on the mend, we continue to become stronger each day.

At this point, we are looking forward to 2021 but know there is still a long road to recovery for the nation and the world. With the potential of a vaccine, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. We hope this brings relief especially to those that have the highest chance of contracting virus. We also hope this will offer us a chance to travel in the second half of the year. Only time will tell but for now, we all need to sit tight and continue to quarantine.

Below are some recent photos of some of our fish including: Tatia musaica. Hope everyone enjoys the photos and the holidays. Take care and we will see you in 2021!

A New Cat On The Block

First, a big thank you to everyone who reached out to us after going to the hospital. Unfortunately, there have been some complications and we are still recovering. The good news is that we are alive and will live to fish another day! It has been quite a few years for us and 2021 cannot get here fast enough!

Now on to the good stuff. Last December, a group of us traveled to Florencia, Colombia in the Caqueta region. This area of South America can be defined as Andean highlands with lush forests, many insects especially ants and a very catfish friendly paradise. We hope to share many of the species we found in this location with everyone at a Catfish Convention in the future. Fingers crossed that we can get back to such events soon.

Prior to going on these expeditions, we always investigate to see what species of fish we may encounter. One of these species was Duringlanis altae. This species was first described by Fowler in 1945 and is closely related to Duringlanis perugiae. Few pictures of this species exist and only recently have collections in the area been possible due as travel to the area was unsafe. A more detailed account of the trip will be made possible in a future magazine of Amazonas. Please subscribe to this wonderful magazine if you have not already by visiting their website at: https://www.amazonasmagazine.com/

Our collecting group was successful in finding this species in the Rio Caqueta region and bringing them back to the U.S., perhaps for the first time? Even more exciting is that we have the first fry of this species. This is likely a world first spawning event! With that, we share below some of the first photos of this species settled in the aquarium. As you can see, this species is quite nice and each fish has a different design. In the near future, we hope to be able to make this species available to avid catfish enthusiasts. Stay tuned to this website for more updates!

Duringlanis altae male

More Jaguar Eggs

After a few years, our Jagaur Catfish,  Liosomadorus oncinus, have once again spawned. Interestingly, the first clutch of eggs numbered around 1,000 and almost all were infertile. Then a week later, another clutch of roughly 400 eggs were laid. Out of these, half appeared to be fertile. Several hours later, we had separated the good eggs from the bad. Another interesting observation was that the eggs were in various stages of development. Some eggs appeared to have fully formed juveniles that were about to hatch while other eggs were still just yolks.

At the time of writing this update, all eggs have hatched and the fry have started feeding. One last observation is that the fry have very long barbels already. One can assume this is to make finding food much easier. Fingers crossed that we are able to raise these and make them available to other aquarists.

Liosomadoras oncinus male

Summer 2020

Summer has finally arrived and boy it is hot! Unfortunately, COVID19 is back on the rise. All of this is not allowing shipping at this time. The other issue is that so far, most fish club functions have been cancelled and there does not seem to be an end in sight. However, there is some good news, the Greater Cincinnati Aquarium Society (GCAS), just had a very successful outdoor swap meet. Hopefully such events can continue.

With that said, the best option at this point is porch pick up. There may also be instances where pick up in the Detroit, Michigan area can be arranged. Please contact us at: jeremybasch@gmail.com for more details. In other news, we have started to keep a limited number of live plants. Some of these are now available on our Availability List.

Echinodorus magdalenensis on special now!

Updates

It has been quite some time since we have had an update. Life does happen and certainly the most important things are spending time with loved ones. Obviously the world has changed drastically since our last post with COVID19. At present, it makes it impossible to ship as we are high risk. Please follow the guidelines that are being provided and stay safe!

Some of you have asked about shipping recently. Long story short, it really is not a viable option for us due to our work schedule along with the stay at home order. If you are local, we can however offer porch pick up. See our Fish Availability page for more details.

The best news recently is that our Peckoltia compta “Rio Jamanxim” spawned! This is the first spawn of Peckoltia for us and we could not be more excited! This genus has been a tough one for us to crack but with a lot of patience, the fish finally got it right.

Peckoltia compta F-1 fry

Spring and Preparing for CatCon 2020

Spring is less than 30 days away! Winter has felt a little longer for some reason this year. During this long winter, we have been busy working on the fishroom mostly. There is still a ton of work to do including more drilling and painting of tanks, plumbing work and setting up more racks. And let’s not forget those water changes. A fishroom is always a work in progress!

Fish event season is  here with the Greater Cincinnati  Aquarium Society (GCAS) and Columbus Area Fish Enthusiasts (CAFE) each having their Swaps in the last few weeks.  If you missed those events, you missed your chance at some awesome fish! Each club is now bringing in neat fish for New and Rare Silent Auctions during the swaps. There were some truly stunning fish available from several great sponsors. Each swap had over 30 tables from vendors all over Ohio and beyond.

On the horizon is now the CAFE’s Spring Auction. We are exactly one month away, March 22nd, and there are going to be some very special fish in this year’s auction. What might be there? Well you will just have to wait to find out. Stay tuned to the CAFE Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/groups/columbusfishclub and be sure to review the auction rules prior to the event at http://columbusfishclub.org.

The All-American Catfish  Convention or CatCon, as we like to call it, is later this year. This is the premier event on catfish. Meet catfish nuts from around the globe in a fun, entertaining and educational atmosphere. We will be there presenting two talks, one on Colombia and the other on Auchenipteridae – Woodcatfish.  It is not too early to start making plans for this event. As a matter of fact, the website just went live last week. Be sure to get your hotel room and register for this one-of-a-kind event! Follow the link to sign up: http://www.catfishcon.com

Lastly, we wish to share a sneak peek of one of the species we collected in the Rio Caqueta. For those into Aucehnipteridae, you might recognize the fish as a Tatia intermedia type. There are a few differences however if you look closely at the video. Can you spot the difference? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCeAXYbdTxY

 

A New Year, A New Start

Welcome to 2020! Happy New Year to everyone! We are happy to see the calendar switch over to a new decade. 2020 almost seems futuristic when you think about it and with that let’s focus on just that, the future of AmazonTropics.com.

It is with great honor and pride that we announce that we will be one of the guest speakers at this year’s All-American Catfish Convention, CatCon 2020! This event is the premier catfish convention with amazing speakers from all over the world and right here in the U.S.A. A few speakers have already been announced with more to come!

CatCon also has great vendors that sell products just for all of our special whiskered friends. One of the main attractions of the event beyond the speakers and vendors is the Spree On Three! Breeders and Importers sell catfish and other fish species from their hotel rooms. This is always a big hit and AmazonTropics.com is already planning to have as many fish available as possible. More to come on this as the event approaches. So please be sure to mark your calendars for October 8th-11th! Stay tuned by visiting here:  CatCon Facebook Page

In other news, we have finally been able to put more time towards making the fishroom as we intended it to be. So far this year, we have already replaced several tanks with new ones and resealed our 120 gallon display tank. As you may recall, it suddenly leaked last year.  We have also made glass lids for the new tanks.

Our next speaking engagement will be in Cincinnati on January 26th. The presentation will share parts of our travels through Colombia. Join us for a fun night of fun, friends and fish. Details can be found here: Greater Cincinnati Aquarium Society