ACA News, Volume 8, #1-2

ACA News

Volume 8, #1-2 January-February, 2022

Editor: Alan De Angelo

Publisher: Daryl Hutchins

Contact: [email protected]


Greetings and New Year’s salutations!

The omnicron strain of the Covid-19 virus has been blasting its way through the country. They say that it is now slowing down, but we will see what happens. The good thing is that by the time the ACA Convention rolls around, we should all have been vaccinated, boosted, and/or contain antibodies from having had the disease. In essence, we should all be safe to mix and mingle once again, and talk cichlids unencumbered. Yahoo!


Speaking of the convention, the primary hotel is sold out, but right next door are our secondary and tertiary hotels that still have rooms available. Please, go to the website for all the pertinent information. The hotels are at the bottom of the page:

Cichlid News NEWS

Congratulations to Laif Demason and Cichlid News as it begins its 30th year of publication. That is quite an accomplishment in today’s world. With the sudden and untimely loss of Wayne Leibel as its Editor, Cichlid News continued with Laif at the helm to carry on. I have been informed by Laif that Don Danko will be joining the editorial staff this year. We all should know Don’s work in the cichlid world but did you know that he is also an accomplished bird photographer? Kudos to Don on his many accomplishments.

In my opinion, every serious cichlidist should be subscribing to Cichlid News and it should be arriving in your mailbox to enrich your knowledge of your favorite fishes.

But I have a biased view, since I have authored a few pieces for it and I have every issue of Cichlid News in my collection, even the original “flyer.” The original purpose of Cichlid News was to introduce new fishes to Laif’s customers who had no idea what all of these new fishes being imported looked like. Laif, who’s fish farm, Old World Exotics, hoped to solve the problem by sending out a photo sheet of the new fishes available. The success of this first flyer quickly turned into the magazine Cichlid News. What a great idea.

I wish the best to everyone at Cichlid News for their continued success.


Biggs! You only need to know the one word to bring a smile to your face. If you must see his entire moniker, it would be “Chris ‘the Mad Aquarist’ Biggs”, a true force of nature. This likable guy, currently on the ACA BOT, has his own YouTube channel and has many very entertaining videos. I recently watched his video of 1:40 mins duration, which was an interview with Dan Sharifi, owner of Cichlids of the America’s, and let me tell you, 100 minutes of these two guys bantering back and forth, talking about Central American cichlids, the environment that they live in, travels, the local people, etc., was very enjoyable. It’s a must-see. Look it up on YouTube and enjoy! Oh, and subscribe to Chris’ channel, too. Even though he’s occasionally into isopods/pill bugs, you know, roly-polies, the things you’d catch and flick off the palm of your hand with your middle finger, usually aimed at your brother or friend. LOL! I have to say, there are some cool Isopods but they are not for me.


Man does not live by cichlids alone. I know. Bite my tongue, right? But, as an aquarist, I enjoy a wide range of fishes, including Tetras. I recently bought the Amazonas Special Edition “Characins-the New Brazilian Tetras” and it did not disappoint. What a wonderful addition to my collection. I have every issue of Amazonas, too. While some issues of Amazonas focus on oddball fishes, every issue contains something for the cichlid enthusiast. If you don’t subscribe to Amazonas Magazine, you are missing out on great information. Subscribe today.


– Credence Clearwater Revival

If you recall, a few years back, I covered the topic of PIJAC and how they fight the extreme powers that be who don’t want us to have the ability of keeping not only fish but dogs and cats, too. Well, that day is dawning and you need to act swiftly before your rights are gone.

Now, the ACA is an educational 501c3 and cannot lobby, therefore, I can not and will not tell you what to say in your communications with your Senators and Congressmen. But, you also don’t need a brick to hit you on the head to know. Please read the article below and act fast. Thank you:

Federal Legislation Threatens Pets, Zoos, Aquariums, and Biomedical Research

White lists are a terrible idea. I can see black lists because they will contain a few species that have been studied and are known troublemakers. White lists, however, are never very inclusive and never a good thing. This happened in Australia and I will copy Daryl Hutchins’ response to the BOT here:

Australia used to have a very healthy aquarium hobby/industry, arguably second only to photography (many fishkeepers combined the two hobbies, so the math is difficult). LFSs were almost as common as gas stations and there were more clubs than there are now. Those clubs also had many more members and filling committee positions always required elections. New members joined-up at most meetings.

Two major events have had a negative effect on the Australian hobby in the past 30 or so years: the internet and the implementation of a white list. The internet came first, it was crude at the time but the effect on membership was noticeable. Just the threat of a white list and the implication that anything not on it would be declared noxious (never did, or hasn’t happened … yet) caused a large dip in new memberships and renewals.

When the white list was actually made law, it was devastating. The hobby is just a pale shadow of its former self. Stores came and went, but the “wents” seem to have been in the majority. Hobbyists traded fish houses for bicycles and lots of lycra, stamps, fluffy dogs … or whatever. I could count the new members over the past five years on one hand and I can’t remember the last time there was an actual election for a committee position … put your hand up and you’re elected unopposed.

So, head ’em off at the pass and please, write to your elected representatives.

Until next time,

– Alan


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Send your cichlid-related news/events to the AN Editor at [email protected] and we will be happy to help you spread the word about your local events. Please allow six weeks lead-time.


Please ensure that the ACA has your current e-mail address. Otherwise we could lose touch … e-mails not arriving, fire and brimstone coming down from the skies, rivers and seas boiling, 40 years of darkness, earthquakes, volcanoes, dead rising from the grave, human sacrifice, dogs and cats living together – mass hysteria! Oh, wait …
Your street address and/or mobile/phone number could prove useful too … just in case.