August 2016: Livebearers (Gerald Griffin)

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August 2016: Livebearers (Gerald Griffin)

Postby mewickham » Wed Aug 10, 2016 3:42 pm

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And for those of you who don't already know the speaker, here's a biography of Gerald Griffin:

I first started keeping fish at the age of nine and by ten bred my first fish species Colisa lalia, followed shortly by Colisa chuna (sota), Colisa fasciata and labiosa. At the age of twelve, I read All About Bettas by Walt Maurus and fell in love with wild bettas. The only problem was that, in the 1970s, I could not find any living in Oklahoma. By the time I went to college, I found articles on wild bettas in the school library and joined the International Betta Congress. I started corresponding with various fish keepers and found some wild betta stocks and started collecting them and writing articles.

After a personal disaster (one of my college friends killing off my entire fish collection), I reduced the number of tanks I kept down to about half a dozen. I kept at that level as I started keeping herps-- mainly bearded dragons, milk snakes and native Oklahoma herps-- that I used in snake shows.

Around the year 2000, I once again got hit with the betta bug and started keeping domestics again. As soon as I did, the wild betta bug hit me again and I went crazy again collecting them. I currently run over 80 tanks dedicated to a number of different fish. As I became more involved in my local fish club, the Oklahoma Aquarium Association, I started keeping a variety of species and have since spawned various barbs, African cichlids, killifish, native American fish, American cichlids, livebearers, tetras, gobies, and a number of miscellaneous fishes. And I have diverged into saltwater fishes (clownfish and seahorses). However wild bettas will always be my first love and the primary fish I keep.

I am currently president of the International Betta Congress and the president of the Tulsa Chapter of the Oklahoma Aquarium Association. I edit the award winning Fish Tales magazine for the Federation of Texas Aquarium Societies (FOTAS). Mark Denaro and I have also started the American Labyrinth Fish Association and are in the process of putting up a website and starting a publication. We are hoping in the next year or two to have an annual convention.
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