What is the general opinion of aquarium workers? Perhaps that they are bookish, maybe a little nerdy, the whole scientist cliché. That couldn’t be farther from the truth! Aquarium workers are conservationists and adventurers. If they were able to, most would travel the world observing fish species and dreaming up new ways to improve aquariums.
Aquarium workers across the world are a part of a large community. They depend on each other for help, not only to improve their respective programs, but to also save a species. Aquarists at the ZSL London Zoo, for example, need help with a species of fish. It is a matter of life and death.
The fish in question is the Mangarahara cichlid, a Madagascan fish. London aquarists are desperately trying to find a female mate. Once a populous fish in the Mangarahara River, its habitat is all but gone, and according to the Zoo, only three males remain. That is a terrifying burden to have, knowing that particular species may only have three males left. A burning clock must follow the London Zoo aquarists around.
Brian Zimmerman, Zoo representative, pleas, “We are urgently appealing to anyone who owns or knows someone who may own these critically endangered fish, which are silver in color with an orange-tipped tail, so that we can start a breeding program here at the Zoo to bring them back from the brink of extinction.”
Zimmerman’s passion is righteous and laudable. If more people were like him, the world would be a much better place. It is one thing to fight against death; it is another matter entirely to fight against the extinction of a species. Such aquarists deserve our respect! He has the respect of Arizona Aquatic Gardens!
*Image courtesy of Bjoertvedt, via Wikipedia