Hounslow Urban Farm in Feltham, Middlesex will once again host the 31st Festival of Fishkeeping over the weekend of October 7–8, 2017.
Hounslow Urban Farm, one of the UK’s largest community farms, is expert at giving local children a real life experience of a working farm and hosting really fantastic events. So, during the weekend , families will be able to enjoy both the interactive contact with domestic farm animals that the Farm offers, including rare and unusual breeds, as well as the Festival of Fishkeeping — all for the cost of standard entry to the farm!
The Festival of Fishkeeping is the UK’s biggest display and competition of rare breed, tropical fish and reptiles. It’s a unique and fantastic opportunity to get up close to exotic, weird and wonderful fish and reptiles that can’t be seen elsewhere, all in one place at one time. You certainly don’t have to be nuts about fish to appreciate the splendour of the fish on display, which include Japanese Koi, Discus, killifish, Jinchu Kai and many more, plus the chance to buy some quality fish.
If the weather is inclement, the undercover, fully-heated environment will ensure comfortable viewing of the very best quality of fish and reptiles in full adult size and prime condition, brought together by fish breeders and hobbyists from around the country.
Supporting Companies this year include Rolf C Hagen, Fish Science, Simply Koi, LBA Lisa Bradshaw, Devotedly Discus — and those amazing stingrays will be back this year, along with the fabulous flowerhorns and Betta splendens.
In addition to the regular fish competitions, there will be Discus and cichlid displays plus Societies’ information Stands.
FESTIVAL FISH COMPETITION DETAILS
This is the last chance for exhibitors to show off their fishes and plants in the FBAS Show season and for the public to be attracted into the hobby by viewing the very best in the aquatic world.
Saturday, October 7
FESTIVAL A.S. OPEN SHOW
FBAS Championship Classes (winners qualify for 2017 Supreme)
M (AOS Tropical Egglayers)
V (Twin-tailed Goldfish)
Diamond Class (qualifies for 2018 Final) – J (Rasboras)
Fishes gaining ‘Best in Shows’ from any Open Show in 2017 qualify for this end-of-the-year ‘Head-to-Head’ final shootout.
DIAMOND CLASS FINAL
Relying on the ‘Home Game’ advantage’ theory, winners of the Society nominated Class have to do it all again in this popular Final Round.
Sunday, October 8
SUPREME CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL
This is the BIG ONE! Whichever fish wins, it’s ‘Simply the Best.’ Qualifiers come from successful 2017 Championship Trophy Class winners.
SUPREME PAIRS FINAL
Favourite twosomes. Or fishkeeping’s equivalent of ‘Mr & Mrs’. 2017 Pairs Classes winners qualify.
SUPREME BREEDERS FINAL
Four of a kind, or, Familiarity breeds! (2017 Breeders’ Classes winners qualify)
Other attractions throughout the weekend include:
Some see these magnificent fish as the ‘Rolls Royces’ of the aquatic world. Do you envy the Judges’ job deciding the winner from such a collection?
‘Big is Beautiful’ so they say. Apart from admiring their beauty, spare a thought on the effort required to get fish into this condition and getting them to the Show as well!
SIAMESE FIGHTER DISPLAY
LJB Aquatics will be putting on a big display of some awesome fish that just can’t be missed. Along with sensational stingrays and flowerhorns , the LJB stand will include stunning and vibrant Betta splendens, with every tail type and colour you can imagine, all of a very high standard — with plenty of fish for sale!
SURPLUS HOME-BRED FISH SALES
It’s surprising what you can pick up (at bargain prices too!) in this hobbyists-supported feature. To reserve tank-space for your sales (which you must supervise personally), contact Paul Corbett as soon as possible on 01983 522448 or 07926 354669.
FURNISHED & BREEDERS AQUARIUMS DISPLAY presented by Hounslow & D.A.S.
Activities and events at the farm will include the best in family entertainment including children’s animal encounters, bouncy castle, bird of prey displays, pig and ferret racing, animal feeding, children’s play zones, face painting, art and craft and animal games competitions. This year the farm has also installed go-carts, paddleboats, a paddling pool and sand pits.
Just set your satnav to Faggs Road, Feltham, Middlesex TW14 0LZ.
For further details about the Festival of Fishkeeping, contact The Festival Organiser, 8 Acacia Avenue, Brentford, Middlesex, TW8 8NR. Tel. 020 88473586 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Saturday, October 7
Eheim has launched the new LEDcontrol, especially developed for its PowerLED+ series.
Using the Eheim LEDcontrol, you can control your aquarium lighting to create the ideal light for both fish and plants.
With the ‘fresh plant’ and ‘marine hybrid’ lights, different light options (dawn, dusk, etc.) can be individually adapted. For ‘fresh daylight’ or ‘marine actinic’ lights, you can only vary the brightness.
The controller is quick to install due to the pre-installed connectors. The included software (USB card*) can be programmed via your PC and you can either enter your individual lighting preferences or simply select one of the pre-installed programs. As soon as the current time is synchronised with your PC, you can start. (*If you lose the USB card, you can download the content from the EHEIM website for free.)
There’s a fast forward mode to check the selected settings and you can switch between Summer and Winter GMT simply by synchronising with the PC (brightness and colour variations remain unchanged.
The new LEDcontrol has three years’ warranty.
More info: www.eheim.com
The European Union has added four more aquatic plants to the banned list of species that can no longer be sold in the UK in the future.
The trade will have a year to sell remaining stock, provided a contract is in place to supply and buy these plants (the deadline for this was August 1, 2017).
And the industry is being reminded that all stock of four pond plants banned last year — including Water hyacinth (pictured below) — must have been cleared from the shelves and cannot be sold from today (August 3).
The full list of aquatic species that cannot be sold in the UK is available on the OATA website.
The latest four plants to be banned as part of an update to the Alien Invasive Species Regulation are:
- Alternanthera philoxeroides (Alligator weed)
- Elodea nuttallii (Nuttall’s waterweed)
- Gunnera tinctoria (Giant rhubarb)
- Myriophyllum heterophyllum (Broadleaf watermilfoil)
“These are not bigger sellers in our industry but nevertheless it is yet more aquatic plants being chipped away from what can be sold. And we know the EU is already working on its next list of invasive species and there will be more aquatic plants and ornamental fish being considered for that,” says OATA Chief Executive Dominic Whitmee.
“We continue to make the point to Defra that many of these pond plants do not pose an invasive issue for the UK because they cannot survive our winters, so should be allowed back on sale as soon as possible following our exit from the EU.”
Time is running out for voting in our 2017 Practical Fishkeeping Readers' Poll. So, if you haven't cast your vote for your favourite aquatic retailer(s) yet, now is the time to do so!
And don't forget that there are some fabulous prizes up for grabs from Fluval — just by taking part, you'll be entered into a free draw where you could win some great fishkeeping gear!
Entries must arrive before August 18, 2017. The results will be announced later in the year.
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In the September 2017 issue of Practical Fishkeeping, you can discover some of the brightest freshwater fish out there, and what makes them even more special is that you can grow them at home from mail order eggs — they’re the fishy equivalent of garden seeds!
Also in the September issue:
Find out why the Flyer cichlid makes a great introduction to Central American cichlids, and earn your breeding stripes by spawning the Zebra danio. We explain how to go about it.
We have some great inspirational ideas for three-foot tank set-ups — or alternatively, why not go ‘scape hunting? The concept is simple: go out, explore, be inspired, then use your experience to create an aquascape.
We revisit the star of one of this year’s most popular PFK reader visits, and bring you more rarities and curiosities encountered on our travels recently.
Discover how you can add variety to the diet of your fish, shrimp and snails, and save money into the bargain. And there are more ways to save money with our outdoor project ideas — so go on, make the most of the rest of the summer. It won’t last for ever!
We look at the arguments for and against keeping the remarkable Cleaner wrasse in the aquarium, and if that new marine fish you added acts nothing like you expected, or a peaceful fish has become a tyrant, our special feature explains what may have caused these changes in behaviour?
All this plus your questions answered by our team of experts, the latest products tried and tested — and much more.
On sale now!
The next stage in the Nationwide Open Shows of the Goldfish Societies of the UK was held in Redby Community Centre, Sunderland on Sunday, July 16, when the North East Goldfish Society (NEGS) saw 65 Goldfish entries in its annual Open Show, reports Dr David Ford.
The Best in Show and the Best Exhibit was won by the same fish — a Tosakin (pictured above) by Chairman Alan Race. ￼Alan was also handing out the prizes to the winners in the 26 Classes of Goldfish that they displayed, so he here he is handing over the Best in Show Trophy to himself...
The auction of locally bred Goldfish varieties saw nine lots, all sold at bargain prices. Five judges from the four Goldfish Societies of the UK assessed the Goldfish to their own Nationwide Standards. ￼Each of the 26 Classes had a First (and second and third).
Here are a few of the Firsts...
The best Common Goldfish. ￼
￼This Fantail Oranda won a First.
￼The winning Shubunkin.
The ‘Pairs’ Class has separate aquaria but the fish have to be from the same brood. These won the First in the Twintail Class. ￼
If you want to see, or even buy, pedigree Goldfish, the dates of the next Nationwide Open Shows are...
Sunday September 3: Bristol Aquarist Society at The Hengrove Community Centre, Fortfield Road, Bristol BS14 9NX
Saturday, September 16: Northern Goldfish & Pondkeepers Society at St. Matthews Church Hall, Chester Road, Stretford, Manchester M32 8HF
Saturday, September 30: The Nationwide Open Show (with all the UK Societies) at The Horsehay Village Hall, Bridge Road, Horsehay, Telford TF4 2NF.
Of all the things an animal could eat, corals are arguably one of the toughest, thanks to their thin, mucus-covered flesh packed with venomous stinging cells spread over a razor-sharp skeleton. Perhaps that explains why of the more than 6,000 fish species that live on the reef, only 128 are known to feed on corals. Now, researchers have discovered that at least one species of coral-feeding fish ‘kisses’ the flesh and mucus off the coral skeleton using protective, self-lubricating lips.
"The lips are like the gills of a mushroom but covered in slime," says David Bellwood of James Cook University in Australia. "It is like having a running nose but having running lips instead."
The researchers suggest that the mucus may facilitate suction while offering protection from the corals' stinging nematocysts.
Wrasses that don't eat corals have lips that are thin and smooth, with teeth that protrude slightly. By comparison, Tubelip wrasses, Labropsis australis, have lips that are fleshy and stick out, forming a tube when the mouth is closed that covers all the teeth.
The most prominent characteristic of the Tubelip wrasse's lips, they found, are numerous thin membranes arranged outward from the center like the gills of a mushroom. The mouth surface also includes many folds loaded with highly productive mucus-secreting glands. In other words, their lips drip with slime.
The wrasses feed by briefly placing their lips in contact with the coral prior to delivering a powerful suck, appearing to seal the mouth over a small area. The new evidence suggests that Tubelip wrasses survive by feeding primarily on coral mucus.
In 1988, Irish singer and songwriter Enya released a single called ‘Orinoco Flow’ from her second studio album, which went on to become an international hit and earn a Grammy Award nomination. Now a team of scientists have named a new species of fish from the Orinoco River drainage after her.
Leporinus enyae is a “beautiful little fish,” said Michael Burns, a doctoral candidate at Oregon State University and lead author on the paper describing the new species.
“Whenever we were in the lab at Oregon State working on the fishes, Ben Frable would always play ‘Orinoco Flow,” said Burns, referring to another graduate student in the lab.
“I heard the song so often in the lab it got stuck in my head,” co-author Marcus Chatfield said. “Then I just started listening to it on purpose when I was taking measurements of the specimens. When the time came around for choosing names, it just felt right to name this new beautiful fish from the Orinoco after the artist who wrote that beautiful song.”
Leporinus is the largest and most diverse genus in the characiform family Anostomidae and includes roughly 90 species across most of South America.
The term Leporinus literally means ‘little hare,’ in reference to the large teeth that protrude from the mouth, much like those of a rabbit. The bottom teeth of the new species are particularly long, and while no one is sure why, the researchers note that it may relate to it foraging on plants, worms and other invertebrates.
Aquariums across the United States have joined forces to create a new Aquarium Conservation Partnership (ACP) to address one of the gravest threats facing ocean and freshwater animals – plastic pollution — with the launch of a nationwide consumer campaign and a business commitment to drive a shift away from single-use plastic.
“The public trusts aquariums to do what’s right for the health of the ocean and for ocean wildlife,” said Julie Packard, executive director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium. “We’re just beginning to understand the full impacts of ocean plastic pollution on ecosystems, marine life and human health. But we already know enough to say that now is the time to act.”
Through the national ‘In Our Hands’ campaign, the ACP hopes to drive a national shift away from single-use plastic and toward innovative alternatives. The campaign includes a website that inspires visitors to make positive everyday behaviour changes and raise awareness of the issue.
All 19 aquariums are also supporting this shift away from single-use plastic within their own businesses by eliminating plastic straws and single-use plastic takeaway bags. They have also committed to significantly reducing or eliminate plastic beverage bottles by December 2020 and to showcase innovative alternatives to single-use plastic in their facilities.
About 8.8 million tons of plastic enters the ocean each year worldwide – roughly a dump truck full of plastic every minute of every day. In the United States alone, plastic waste averages more than 200 pounds per person each year. If nothing changes, by 2025 the flow of plastic into the ocean is expected to double.
But it’s not just the ocean that’s affected. Today, there are an estimated one billion plastic particles floating on the surface of Lake Michigan alone.
The Aquarium Conservation Partnership was first championed by the Monterey Bay Aquarium in California, National Aquarium in Baltimore and Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, in collaboration with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. Coalition partners include: Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach; California Academy of Sciences/Steinhart Aquarium in San Francisco; Mystic Aquarium in Connecticut; Florida Aquarium; Newport Aquarium in Kentucky; Audubon Nature Institute/Aquarium of the Americas in New Orleans; New England Aquarium in Boston; Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium in Nebraska; Wildlife Conservation Society/New York Aquarium in New York City; North Carolina Aquariums; South Carolina Aquarium; Tennessee Aquarium; Texas State Aquarium; Virginia Aquarium; Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium in Tacoma; and Seattle Aquarium.
The Yorkshire Association of Aquarist Societies annual Open Show and Auction at The Village Hall, Stockton on the Forest, took place on Sunday, July 2 2017.
WORDS AND PHOTOS: DR DAVID FORD
This Distichodus teugelsi took the Fish of Fishes award. It is one of nine wild-caught species owned by Bede Kerrigan of STAMPS (the South Tyneside Aquatic & Marine Society) — unfortunately all of them are females.
The YAAS show was once YAF (the Yorkshire Aquarist Festival) and so retains the ‘Fish of Fishes’ award. Dating from 1975, the grand trophy has been awarded ever since.
There were 10 entries in the Fish of Fishes competition — fish that have already won a First in the YAAS clubs shows.
The other YAF annual award is the Best Exhibit. This is for pairs of fish that have achieved 85 points or more in previous shows. This year there was only four entries but the winner was a pair of South American Banjo catfishes, Bunocephalus larai, by Roy Chapman of Castleford Aquarist Society. This pair of fishes are regular winners in the Pairs class and have featured on the PFK website over several years.
In the Open Show there were 230 entries, assessed by four YAAS Judges, with the Best in Show being awarded to Mr and Mrs Nelson of Ashby AS for their Metriaclima lombardoi.
Shirley Nelson also won the Best Exhibit with a pair of Rainbow shiners, Notropis chrosomus.
These awards mean that Mr and Mrs Nelson have passed their 1000th award for YAAS firsts. Presentations will be at the next YAAS Show.
A 50-strong audience attended the auction, which lasted most of the afternoon.
The next Open Show and Auction will be ‘Friends of Yorkshire’, Sunday, August 13, also at Stockton on the Forest (postcode for your sat nav is YO32 9UR).
Collected from the mineral-rich foothills of Mount Aso Volcano in Japan, new Fluval Stratum is an alternative substrate for planted aquariums and those featuring shrimp.
Fluval Stratum encourages strong plant growth — the roots easily penetrate and spread throughout the substrate to obtain key nutrients. The porous structure allows for rapid colonisation by beneficial nitrifying bacteria. This substrate helps support neutral to slightly acidic pH — ideal for most plants, tropical fish and shrimp normally kept in planted aquariums — and also provides newborn shrimp with a refuge from predators until they are large enough to emerge.
It won’t discolour the aquarium water and actually helps control organic discolouration when natural driftwood is present. For use in freshwater aquariums.
Price: 2kg £9.99; 4kg £18.99; 8kg £35.99.
More info: Contact Fluval Aquatics on 01977 556622 or visit www.fluvalaquatics.com
The August issue of Practical Fishkeeping is packed with amazing fish, inspirational ideas and expert advice. Here’s just a taster of what you can find between the pages of this month’s magazine…
Our fish of the Month is the Rainbow shiner — it’s ironic that one of the hottest fish on the scene comes from cold waters... Here’s how to keep this little beauty.
Who says brown is boring? The Chocolate gourami is a real treat that not only looks delicious but also has a soft centre. Find out how to keep these sweet fish.
Smaller set-ups can really look the business. We have are some great ideas for the more easily accommodated 60cm/2ft aquariums.
Charming and colourful, neither of the Ram cichlids grow too big, and they are inexpensive to buy and fun to breed. But one is much easier to keep than the other… Find out which is best for your tank.
We feature a lovely Nature Aquarium style layout, set up to honour aquascaping legend Takashi Amano — and it’s surprisingly low maintenance.
We visit a reader with a superb reef set-up that shows just how effective a room divider tank can be when it’s done well.
There’s advice on prepping for the hols, preventing summer problems in your pond, and how to make the most of the summer by enjoying our native marine life.
Plus some stunning new fish in the shops, new gear reviews, your questions answered by our team of experts, and loads more.
Don’t forget you can buy the latest issue of the magazine online, with free p & p if you live in the UK.
Or why not subscribe to PFK? See our latest subscription offer here.
Yes, that’s right! Subscribe to PFK and you can get your first three issues for just £1 each!
Choose from a print only subscription, or go digital only. Or you can even opt for both and save even more money.
Free UK delivery to your door or free download to your digital device.
Hurry — this offer closes on August 1, 2017.
This goldfish is one of a number of 'zoo exhibits' painted by artists at a village in China.
The rocks were painted with a variety of different animals at Ren'an Village in Lishui, Zhejiang Province of China, earlier this year.
Other animals included pandas, leopards, hedgehogs, reptiles and parrots.
After the successful launch of its award winning Fluval Flex aquarium range, Fluval Aquatics has now added to the series with two new variants in a white finish.
Flex not only provides contemporary styling with its distinctive curved front, but is also equipped with powerful three-stage filtration in its rear compartment. The LED lighting can be controlled with the Flex Pad remote control, allowing for a wide range of colours as well as special effects.
Flex also comes with an easy feed cut out opening and multi-directional dual output nozzles, which can be adjusted to create customised water flow.
White Flex aquariums are available in 34 l and 57 l sizes. The 57 l version also has a matching stand.
Price: 34 l £109.99; 57 l £149.99; Stand (57 l) £92.99.
More info: Contact Fluval Aquatics on 01977 556622 or visit www.fluvalaquatics.com
Squire’s Garden Centre in Washington, West Sussex, is holding its third annual Koi Show on Sunday, July 9, 2017.
There will be 18 vats of Koi, with each vat containing between one and eight Koi depending on their size. Suppliers will also be there to give advice, including Atlantis with their glass-fibre ponds, along with pond pump and filter manufacturer Oase, and NT Labs who supplies fish food and treatment products.
Visitors can take advantage of a great offer, with 25% off all pond fish at Squire’s that whole weekend (including the Friday).
As well as a fantastic display of show quality Koi, there will be reptiles for people to see and handle, including a Boa constrictor, Leopard gecko, Bearded dragon, Pink legged millipedes and an Amazon Milk frog. Chichester College will also be bringing along some animals, plus between 11am-3pm a local vet will be offering free pet advice and there’ll be free childrens' face painting.
So whether you’re a Koi fan or simply looking for a fun day out with the family, this should be a great event. The show is on from 10.30am-4.30pm and entrance is free.
Squire’s Garden Centre is located on London Road, Washington, RH20 3BP.
This was the Best in Show at the 4th Leg of the FGUK (Fancy Guppy League of the UK). It's owned by member Henry Smith, and it's a Viennese double swordtail variety.
WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY: DR DAVID FORD
The FGUK hold their mini-shows around the country using facilities of other Fish Shows. This leg saw 41 entries, and was held alongside the Association of Midland Goldfish Keepers annual Open Show in Coventry.
The next stages of the FGUK will be at:
The Friends of Yorkshire Fish Show, The Village Hall, Stockton on the Forest, Near York YO32 9UJ on Sunday, August 13, 2017
Sheaf Valley Aquarist Society Open Show, The Rockingham Centre, Sheffield Road, Hoyland Common, Barnsley S74 0PY on Sunday, September 24, 2017.
Nationwide Goldfish Open Show, Horsehay Village Hall, Bridge Road, Horsehay, Telford TF4 2NF on Saturday, September 30, 2017.
And the finale will take place at the FGUK Convention, with the International Guppy Show at the Holiday Inn Express, Rockingham Road, Kettering NN14 1UD, on Saturday and Sunday, October 7–8, 2017. This event sees lectures, competitions, and an auction of Guppies and other livebearers.
The 4th National Betta Show was held in the Rockingham Centre, Barnsley, on Sunday, June 25.
WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY: DR DAVID FORD
This year’s show attracted over 40 visitors to this exclusively Betta splendens event. It also included an auction where many Betta were bought for just £3!
There were 158 Betta entered in the show, judged by YAAS judges using their Yorkshire standards but also based on the International Betta Society.
The Best in Show was a Crowntail female Betta — which also won the Best Female Class — by a junior, Harvey Claydon-Baldwin from Fishful Thinking, Charing, Kent.
The Peoples’ Choice (the visitors' most voted choice) was a Super Delta Betta by Straw Cassford.
The judges at the show were Trish Jones, Trevor Douglas, Mick Price and Steve Grant all from the Yorkshire Association of Aquarist Societies (the Betta Show has always been associated with the YAAS).
There were also Certificates and Rosettes for all the Class winners, First, Second and Third. Here are a few of those Firsts... ￼
This gorgeous Pearlscale goldfish was the winner at the AMGK (Association of Midland Goldfish Keepers) in Coventry at its Open Show on Saturday, June 24, 2017.
WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY: DR. DAVID FORD
This club starts the season of shows by the Nationwide Goldfish Societies of the UK.
The Nationwide Clubs also include NGPS (Northern Goldfish & Pondkeepers Society), BAS (Bristol Aquarist Society) and NEGS (North East Goldfish Society). There are hundreds of pedigree varieties of UK-bred goldfish on show and each club holds an auction where the goldfish can be bought at often low prices.
There were the 211 entries in the AMGK Show, judged to the Nationwide Standards in the many classes of the 20 varieties of goldfish. ￼
The auction saw 66 lots of different goldfish varieties being sold to over 40 visitors.
The Show ended with certificates and trophies being awarded to the Best in each Class. That Pearlscale is owned by NGPS member Dean Roberts...
These were some of the other winners at the AMGK Show...
There was a grand raffle and hot and cold food available all day — as at all the Nationwide Shows. If you are a goldfish lover, try to attend at least one of their shows.
Their 2017 calendar looks like this:
Sunday, July 16: NEGS at Redby Community Centre, Fulwell Road, Sunderland, Tyne & Wear SR6 9QU.
Sunday, September 3: BAS at The Hengrove Community Centre, Fortfield Road, Bristol BS14 9NX. ￼
Saturday, September 16: NGPS at St. Matthews Church Hall, Chester Road, Stretford, Manchester M32 8HF. ￼
Saturday, September 30: Nationwide (with all the above Societies) at The Horsehay Village Hall, Bridge Road, Horsehay, Telford TF4 2NF.