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[Killietalk] West Coast Weekend
Let me add my compliments to the WCW mini-convention. I traveled from New Jersey (inexpensive non-stop round trip flight) and am thrilled I went. Coming from the congestion of NY/NJ it was simply nice to be in the wide open clean spaces of Portland. Its a beautiful little city with mountains, fir forests, rivers and a great climate. Leaving Newark Airport one has the feeling of being caught a cattle feedlot but the Portland airport is new, inviting and people friendly. The employees were ready and happy to help.
The hotel was perfect. My room overlooked a large pond surrounded by trees. The matress was the new temper-pedic (?) type foam -- comfortable! The hotel puts on a nice continental breakfast -- something PNW hotels seem to do more than in other parts of the country judging from my limited experience.
The event was planned well and went off without any sense of rush. I felt sorry for Thuan tied to the computer for most of the first 2 days. He definitely had the thankless job and did it so well. Going gave me a chance to meet people I had corresponded with for years. It was nice to finally put faces with words.
The programs were excellent. If you were a Notho lover then you were in heaven at WCW. Brian Watters gave an wonderful presentation of the killies of Zambia followed by John Rosenstock's program on 30 years in Africa -- many in Zambia. I learned all you ever wanted to know about kafuensis! Watching Brian Perkin's video of wild Corydoras weitzmani swimming in an absolutely crystal clear Peruvian mountain stream almost singehandedly made the trip worthwhile. I had no idea the streams looked like what I saw on the video. Now, there was one Rivulus species too many for my taste but to each his own.
I couldn't stay for the auction but there were some good fish in the show. It was nice to see a pair of the new collection of Pronothobranchius kiyawensis. I hope it finally finds a permanent place in the hobby. What a fun little fish. N. rosenstocki was a charmer -- a small Notho. with huge fins and lots of personality. Moema fans would have gone nuts.
A real bonus was being able to buy a dvd of last year's WCW. It contains Glen Collier's fascinating program and Peter Tirbak's "Memories of the AKA". Watching Peter's video I was surprised that no one, including Peter, remembers Dr. Walter Foersch. Peter showed a slide of him and asked if anyone knew who he was. The slide was from Dr. Foersch's 1973 visit to California and was taken, I believe, in Roger Langton's fishroom. It was during this trip that Dr. Foersch inquired about the original 1969 collection of N. furzeri and was told that Rosario LaCorte was the last man maintaining the species at that time. Dr. Foersch contacted Rosario and Rosario sent him eggs. From those eggs N. furzeri finally made its way into the hobby and has remained in the hobby for 38 years now. Dr. Foersch was one of the true pioneers in killie breeding and in solving the problems of raising annual fishes. His photos of Pt. longipinnis and A. bellottii diving into peat moss -- made in the
early 1950's -- were the first photos hobbyist saw of the fascinating breeding behavior of annuals. He was one of the giants in the hobby and one of the very best writers the hobby ever possessed.
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