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Re: A. Cristii?
Welcome back to killies Randy!
That welcome is something an awful lot of killie people have enjoyed. As
Jim Thomerson has suggested, "life stuff" keeps interfering with killie
keeping and other priorities cause us to take breaks from the craft.
What we loved as A. christyi in the '70s and early '80s is now known as
A. schoietzi, found in various places in the Congo River drainage, north of
that River, mostly in People's Republic of Congo, but also off of the lower
Congo in the Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire.There have been a
number of populations (each one more beautiful than the previous ones) in
I recall the consternation at a Cincinnati show when someone announced
that our beloved red and yellow christyi wasn't christyi. Despite the pain
evidenced there, the midwestern American hobbyists pretty quickly came over
to the new useage - maybe because of some dazzling new strains imported
about that time.
I remember various show entires, especially fish raised by John Adamec
(during one of his tours of duty in the hobby) in the middle 90s and Dave
Koran, some years earlier, which seemed larger than most other
representatives of the elegans complex. If you don't raise them in hard
water they are among the "easier" Aphyosemions in their group. If they are
not as common as some other killies, it may be because they are too easy to
raise and hobbyists have moved on to other challenges. That seems a tragedy
to me - but then I don't have them any more either. They are to be found
from time to time in the F&E listing, at killie club meetings, at shows
(peruse the results - send to whoever entered them) and even once in a while
in general club auctions.
There are also a lot of killies identified as christyi from an enormous
range throughout the northern half of the Congo drainage. Just to muddy the
water, there are also christyi habitats listed from the north shore of the
Congo between areas where schoietzi is supposed to be. There are differences
between some of the populations of christyi and to a lesser degree, between
schoietzi. I am certainly not qualified to make distinctions between them,
but it is important to keep known populations separate.
Distribution maps are to be found in Radda and Puerzl's book, Scheel's
Atlas and most recently, in volume I of Wildekamp's series published by the
AKA. I'm sure much work needs to be done on the members of the elegans group
(affictionados like Peter Tirbek could elaborate on this more).
Unfortunately political conditions in the two Congos don't lend themselves
to outsiders cavalierly wandering around collecting little fishes at the
moment. We would be wise to treasure the strains we have in the hobby.
I hope this is a start. One aside, I don't think I have ever spelled the
species schoietzi (either the Aphyosemion or Aplocheilicthys) correctly
three times in a row (in honor of the Danish aquarist and collector Arne
Schoitz - there is a teutonic o I'm messing up). Maybe it will get spelled
correctly more often now.
Someone on this list can surely give you leads. Ruth Warner lists a very
attractive and reasonably priced aquarium strain of schoietzi in this
month's F&E listing which is on the AKA site and in the AKA BNL.
All the best!
>I used to raise killies about 15 years ago. I had a book that contained
>a picture of an A. Cristii. (not sure of the spelling) I was wondering
>if anyone knew about this fish and where I could get a pair?