Back from speaking at GCAS, and a visit with Ricky Chawla- goby hoarder

Posted by on October 4, 2012 | 0 comments

Back from speaking at GCAS, and a visit with Ricky Chawla- goby hoarder

I had the great pleasure to visit the Greater City Aquarium Society to present a new talk on the diversity within nano aquaria this week. What a great turn-out! Many friends and customers from the greater NYC area came out to support, and I had a really great time, despite some technological and traffic issues. I would encourage anyone that has a local club, to join and support! This is THE best way to make fish friends, share plants or fish, and get great deals at auctions while having the ability to see speakers with many different interests and areas of expertise.

While in NYC, I had the extreme pleasure to bunk with a really good friend, Ricky Chawla. He is the one responsible for introducing me to all the little gobies that I have been carrying. He has some REALLY gorgeous fish and display tanks. I took a TON of pictures, some of which I will share here. If you are not familiar with Ricky and his fish, you should really take a minute to look at some of his videos on YouTube. His username is Pabloxanibar. There are some spectacular videos of many stiphodons and rhinogobious, as well as other things.

He also has interests in dart frogs, orchids, and violets. There were little jars of neat plants, terrariums, paludariums, fish tanks and more all over his apartment and the basement of the building. I did not get nearly as many photos as I wanted, but wanted to share some of the highlights with you guys. I am sure you will enjoy seeing stiphodons and gobies showing their really beautiful coloration when in an appropriate tank set-up.

The hillstream set-up that Ricky has is beautifully planted and has a range of driftwood and varying sizes of smooth river stones. This provides lots of areas for the fish to stake out territories, as well as surfaces for algae to grow. As a lot of these fish are grazers, this is really important.  The high oxygen needs of these fish is one that cannot be ignored. Watching them climb and swim against the current and grasp the rocks and glass is a truly beautiful sight. His tank has Stiphodons (atropurpureus and percnopterygionus), Rhinogobious (zhoui, duospilus and I think another species), Siamese algae eaters, a bunch of really cool different loaches (as well as kuhlis which freak me out), snails, cherry barbs, and a variety of things that I am sure that I am forgetting. The display is active, engaging, and extremely vibrant. His scape is just beautiful, making the entire presentation completely riveting.

He feeds Repashy Superfoods, making a personal mix of meat pie and soilent green. There are several feeding shots included in my picture sequence. You can certainly see the fish are well fed and enthusiastic feeders! In his other tanks, inhabitants range from blue-eyed rainbows, to shrimp, to Pinoy angels, to flowerhorn, and some of the nicest goldfish I have ever seen. The next time I go, I will focus on some of his other tanks and critters, but this one was more on his awesome plants, frogs, and gobies. I hope that you enjoy this glimpse into a really dedicated and sophisticated hobbyist’s world!