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NFC: Re:

I am receiving double postings on the list.  How do I fix this?

-----Original Message-----
From: robert a rice <robertrice at juno_com>
To: nfc at actwin_com <nfc at actwin_com>
Date: Thursday, July 01, 1999 3:16 PM

><HTML><PRE>                       Our Hidden Jewels
>                         Robert Rice
>     It appears  that many of our States fishermen and
>Naturalist are overlooking a resource of beauty unparalleled
>in the world. This item is exported and established in
>Europe and Asia where it has been winning awards and fame.
>Yet here at home it is virtually ignored .
>    What are we missing you may wonder? Is  it some rare
>unknown plant , an exotic mineral, the latest batch from a
>micro winery? No, these gems are our non game native fishes.
> When you say non game fishes most people say "nothing to
>'em. dull as dust".  As an aquarist and amateur naturalist I
>can tell you  our natives are among the most beautiful and
>easy to keep fish in the world .They rival most tropicals
>and a great many Saltwater fish in color and diversity of
>body types.
>     Surprised? A great many people are, they have  gotten
>the mistaken notion that the only fish worth investigating
>are the game fish, and the only fish worth keeping are the
>     I spend allot of my free time collecting and studying
>our natives ,so my idea of fishing is a bit different. While
>many of my peers labor away at bass and trout I  take a
>stranger turn. I spent hours mucking around with seine and
>dip nets catching "bait" and more than a few puzzled looks.
>"What 'cha catching there fella" I hear it often and enjoy
>getting the chance to explain what most people have been
>      You may wonder what does it take to get started in
>keeping non game natives. For the novice to either
>collecting or keeping  fish I recommend the following a tank
>of at least 20 gallons setup and  waiting for fish, natives
>are extremely tolerant to temperature and water variables so
>avoid the extremes and fluctuations and you'll be fine.
>You'll need a fishing license and  an awareness of local
>regulations regarding collecting . The  collecting gear I
>recommend is  a  4 foot 1/8 th. inch seine net,  an 1/8 dip
>net (Try to avoid larger mesh as it can harm the fish)
>.Additional items you'll want to bring include bug spray ,
>buckets, zip lock bags and a partner if you can talk someone
>into it make the trip.
>         Once all your gear is in your ready for action
>.Pick a spot that is convenient, away from sport fishermen ,
>and looks like it's got a regular water flow and jump in
>Now some people prefer to use waders. I am what they call a
>Primitive Collector, shorts , tennis shoes ,  and  my
>testosterone aided attitude is all I use. My greatest joy is
>being waist deep in mud as the water tickles my chin and I
>navigate my net past a tree trunk .Others who are much wiser
>or have a more realistic self perception (My Wife for
>instance) take a more civilized route waders, sunscreen,
>picnic lunch etc. You of course will find your own way of
>doing things as there is no one right way.  The most
>important thing to remember is be smart, don't take what you
>shouldn't , don't keep what you don't want, and don't take
>what you don't have room for. The second most important
>thing is not how you do it, but that you enjoy doing it  .
>        After I have caught my prize I gently bag them in a
>zip lock bag with a small amount of water and allot of blown
>in air. Pack them away from the sun and repeat until happy.
>In my experience trips that are less than two hours away
>from your home and your tanks are the best. Once at home
>open the bags floating them in the tank for around 20
>minutes until the temperatures are equal then dip out your
>fish into the tank, never, I repeat, never dump the water
>into the tank, that is the number one way to transmit
>disease and parasites.
>     You'll find with a little care and attention your new
>additions will quickly adapt to domestic life and will come
>up to greet you at feeding time. In time with proper care
>and a little luck your catch may even spawn in the tank.
>     People often wonder what fish work well in an aquarium
>so here are some that I have kept and really enjoy:
>     Orange-spotted sunfish (Lepomis Humilus): This colorful
>little sunfish adapts readily to domestic life. It's been
>recently introduced to the European pet industry. It will
>commonly spawn in an aquarium. The breeding colors of the
>males make them one of the most beautiful fish in the world.
>     Central Longear (Lepomis M. Megalotis  ) : This
>beautiful and durable sunfish is  attractive year round,
>eats anything from worms to frozen tropical fish food to
>dried dog food soaked in water. It is intelligent and will
>often eat out of your hand . It's looks remind me of the
>discus and it's hardiness is unparalleled.
>     Red Shiner (Notropis Lutrensis ): This colorful and
>very adaptable minnow with its red fins and bluish body is
>an eye catcher in any tank. It readily eats flake food and
>is sometimes sold in the pet industry as a "Redhorse
>     Southern Red Belly Dace (Phoxinus erythrogaster): This
>gorgeous little minnow is truly a world class fish. In
>England,  they have peaked in their domestic popularity,
>commonly winning national trade shows, and with it's red
>belly and yellow fins it is no wonder!
>     Of course there are many other central United States
>species that are very well suited for the aquarium. However
>almost all of your sport fish and cold water species are not
>.So do yourself and the fish a favor and don't try it!
>       People have often asked me "Why are you such an
>advocate for native fish?". I will tell you why, I believe
>we will not preserve things that we do not love,  and we
>cannot love things that we have not known. So that is why I
>work to share with others, all the wonderfull native species
>we have. In the hope that  my great grandchildren can
>someday look across a prairie stream and see a flash of
>color in the water and begin to wonder  aloud "What was
>that?" and start on their own journey to knowing.
>    </PRE></HTML>
>Robert Rice
>Help Preserve our Aquatic Heritage join the Native Fish Conservancy
> at our website  www.nativefish.org