INFOWEB  7

From Jean H. Huber
Private address: 7 Bd Flandrin, 75116 Paris, France
Laboratoire d'Ichtyologie, M.N.H.N., 43 rue Cuvier, 75231 PARIS Cedex 05.
e-mail : huber.mnhn@ifrance.com (NEW!) or author@killi-data.org [both today inactive]
S.F.I. : Societe Francaise d'Ichtyologie (same address).

Paris, November 15. 2003.

Dear Colleague, dear Aquarist!

This special newsletter has a very positive taste : I am especially happy and pleased to announce that the Killi-Data website is a large success, in terms of:
- the total number of unique visitors: 1200 since launch, i.e. about 25% of the estimated total number of Killies aquarists and scientists, worldwide (and all of them are not connected to the Internet)
- the number of new unique guests visitors, with about 100 brand new visitors each month for the last trimester
- the high number of regular visitors, with one third of the visitors visiting it at least once a month (and some aficionados, several times per week!)
- the number of registered members, with about 150 members at this time
- the developed cooperation between aquarists and scientists, a strong culture that has been initiated by us, with many examples in many different fields
- the contributions to the online data base from all (who then get free connection periods) : there are now nearly 1700 color photos in the data base of 725 valid species, which means that very few species are not illustrated.

Indeed the brightest side of the project is the effective building of a cooperative community between researchers (see the final table here) and between aquarists and researchers (many examples, with the "carrot" of getting free connection time to the data base) and between aquarists (to exchange data and co-participate to collecting trips).

However, it should not be hidden that the financial side is disappointing and that the breakeven point of expenses will not be reached soon.
The reasons are :
- either people escape from the fee by forwarding contributions (excellent !) : with each contribution being gratified of 3 additional months of free access to the data base, it is easy to imagine that some members have gathered already more than 3 years' bonus. 
- or alternatively people are firmly thinking that all Internet stuff must be free (then easily accept to share the benefits but not the costs !). 
This means that the sponsorship of new researchers by us will be unfortunately delayed like the gratification of the photographers. Financial accounts of Killi-Data online are still negative by 350 Euros (about the same in US Dollars), out of a total of nearly 900 Euros direct expenses.

Finally I would like to extend my warmest thanks to the renown photographers who gave slides to Killi-Data online (name, with the number of given slides):

 

 

 

Authors J.L. Amiet H. Buchberger R. de Boer J. Brill H. de Bruyn O. Buisson A.D. Castro C. Cauvet M. Chauche J.F. Fels D. Fromm
number 6 10 15 12 22 31 27 1 283 91 3
V. Gomez S. Hellner J.W. Hoetmer J.H. Huber J. Kadlec O. Legros T. Litz R. Lütje B. Nagy H. Ott E. Pürzl F.R. Rodrigues
10 11 15 23 316 2 2 2 5 5 195 3
G. Rosch M. Schlüter W. Staeck W. Stenglein W. Suijker K. Tanaka A.C. Terceira S. Valdesalici J.-P. Vandersmissen F. Vermeulen R. Wildekamp  
5 7 16 96 13 52 51 3 44 58 227  

 

 

 

Let's stick to the bright side though and focus on the main issue of this newsletter : several announcements of new ventures that develop our knowledge in Cyprinodonts

* Killi-Data online : a brand new updating of the Data Base has just been put online with many novelties

- innovative maps of distributions for species with many new collecting points (today 107 in total), designed with an innovative approach since each map is showing the distribution of each component of a superspecies, allowing a better understanding of our Killifishes expansion
- re-formatted bibliography with articles listed in full details, i.e. each publication is mentioned with the full title of the article (this had been asked by aquarists because the title usually gives an idea of the contents of the paper and, above all, it gives the language that is being used)
- a simplified REGISTRATION system : now, it is entirely electronic (unless you have to pay fees -15 Euros for 2 years' connection- because you'll have to use postal mail, until electronic payments become legally feasible to individuals in France).
- all new species that have been described since July 2002
- many, many new data and more than 200 additional color photos that have been offered by many contributors.
Today, missing data are scarce on the aquarist side. Apart from the few missing color photos (some females of well known species, Orestias species and top quality pictures of some North American species that are so difficult to catch with their full color, see details in COOPERATE page), the main hole concerns the difficult issue of finding who first bred a given species (and which year). On the scientific side, everything is filled in, except the discoverer of some species (because the museum files are empty). But, on that scientific side, the story will never be ended because new data are published all the time. Finally the updating process of the files has been computerized and from now on, the data base will be updated continuously.

If you are not a registered member and want to have an idea of the Data Base at this time, just visit the "guest" section of the website and click on the SAMPLE page where the file of Aphyosemion chauchei with 2 maps is freely available. You may also enjoy to have a look at a brand new page, named COUNTRY MAP that features, each month, all known collecting  spots in a given country as a spur to undertake trips in un-prospected areas. And if you are interested, come and join the community !

* POCKET KILLI-DATA 2004 : a brand new booklet that will be published each year for our friends aquarists to support their efforts

- yearly available (from January 1.  2004),  in 6 languages
- about 36 pages and small format (for the pocket)
- containing a list of currently valid names, with aquarium populations and countries of distribution, plus synonyms and invalid names
- only distributed through Killifish Associations who will decide by themselves to sell it as individual copies or to distribute it to their membership as a service free of charge.

* CLOFFSCA, a new book for your library : "Check List of the Freshwater Fishes of South and Central America"

Edited by Roberto E. Reis, Carl J. Ferraris, Jr. and Sven O. Kullander
CLOFFSCA is a biodiversity inventory of the freshwater fishes of South and Central America, including the Caribbean islands (like CLOFFA for Africa in 1986). 
It meets two immediate objectives, the first to list all known taxa for the region, and the second to establish a platform for keeping the inventory updated. Entries for each fish species in the Neotropics include valid name and synonyms, author, year and page of original descriptions, type locality, and catalog number and depository of primary type specimens. In addition, contextual information for each species include maximum length, geographical distribution, countries of occurrence, common names, and remarks and references. A general introduction and a list of references complete the chapter for each family. This book is a necessary reference to all those working on systematics or general ichthyology of Neotropical fishes. The authors, per family, are:
Rivulidae (by Wilson Costa): Pp. 526-548
Cyprinodontidae (Orestias, by Wilson Costa): Pp. 549-554
Poeciliidae (Fluviphylax, Tomeurus by Paulo Lucinda): Pp. 555-581
Anablepidae (Oxyzygonectes, by Michael Ghedotti): Pp. 582-585
Of course, all the information therein is already available in the data base of Killi-Data online (which even holds much more), but nothing can replace a book and it is indeed a MUST acquisition : Hard cover, 729 pages, high quality paper, ISBN 85-7430-361-5, Price: US$ 48.00, Shipping and handling: US$ 12.00. Online purchase at the Livraria Cultura. Go to www.livrariacultura.com.br and follow the instructions (in Portuguese).

* New printed ventures to promote Killifish research or collecting trips or species conservation

A renewed dynamism is observed among Killifish associations, in line with Killi-Data philosophy. Obviously, not to mean that ideas of Killi-Data are rudely copied, but that these generous ideas to develop research, conservation and knowledge on killifish are growingly widespread among Killifish pro-active hobbyists and associations BOT members.
Let's mention 2 of them in details:
- Creation of a new fund by AKA, the "George Maier Fund" named after the renown late American aquarist. This fund, managed by Roger Langton (rwlacn@aol.com), provides with grants for research and/or conservation projects relating to Killifish.
In addition, if you plan a collecting trip and would like to obtain information or raise participants to share costs, please do write to me or to your association. You can even invest in a trip without actually going there and get a fair share of the collected wild fish. It works well, with several experiences in the US and Scandinavia.
- Creation of Conservation Committees in nearly all Killifish Associations in order to maintain old aquarium strains and also endangered species in the wild (with the necessary authorizations), following the first announcement in the 5th issue of this newsletter (INFOWEB 5)
Conservation is a living stance, not a dream for idealistic nuts. Please read the following article on the Fundulus julisia issue: 
Tyler Sykes, Endangered species Bulletin March/April 2003 volume XXVIII n°2 17, Landowners are Recognized for Conservation Work.  20 private landowners from the Morrison-Viola area of middle Tennessee were recognized by the Barrens Topminnow Working Group for their efforts to restore and protect habitat for the extremely rare fish Fundulus julisia.

* New electronic ventures by aquarists

Several new services are being offered, or will be very soon…
- Joergen Scheel's pioneering Killi Letters in the early 1960'ies have been edited on the web, thanks to Alan Semeit at http://ark.aka.org/Contents.htm 
- a CDrom of color photos of most species of Epiplatys, by the renown Belgian specialist Jean-Pol Vandersmissen, available against 9 Euros including postage at vdsakfb.epiplatysroloffia@belgacom.net [today inactive]  (plus another CDrom on the ex-Roloffia, that will be available shortly)
- a CDrom encompassing the English translation of Neumann's major book (2000), the bible on Epiplatys: Die Hechtlinge. D.K.G. (Deutsche Killifisch Gem.) J., Supplement Heft (Dezember): 114 pp., figs., maps., available at aqua.neumann@gmx.de 
- a CDrom encompassing all Killies by Jirí Vítek, Jaroslav Kadlec and co-workers, available against 57 Euros including postage at brouci@volny.cz ; a DEMO version is to be viewed at http://halancici.akvarium.cz [today inactive]. Altogether this electronic book consists of 700 computer screens of text and photos: 1221 photos of fishes and their habitats, 144 charts, 61 maps, 24 computer animations, 22 tables, 17 photomontages, 16 figures, 15 schema, 9 pictures, 7 databases, 7 spawn series, 5 stereograms, 5 quizzes, 3 indexes and 2 biological determination keys ; it covers Biology, Embryology and Problems of diapauses, Keeping, Breeding, Taxonomy, and Photo-gallery and description of genera and species (a huge work : Jirí, a biologist and a dedicated aquarist, moved to become a professional petfish editor… Good luck !) 
- a very comprehensive CDrom of  the DKG Chromaphyosemion Study Group (http://www.chromaphyosemion.de  or http://chromaphyosemion.killi.org) with collecting localities, maps, photos, videos, available from Rudolph Pohlmann (rudolfpohlmann@aol.com)
- a (much awaited, still not yet available) CDrom of hundreds of color photos of Killifishes by the renown French photographer Maurice Chauche. Encouragements and enquiries to Jean-Paul Cicéron at variance.ciceron@wanadoo.fr (today inactive) 
- Next issue : will there be once a CD of Killi-Data online data base ?

Besides, why not start a general electronic encyclopaedia, in many languages, of all the aquarists articles that have been published, either in killifish association magazines or in old aquarium magazines (not protected anymore by copyrights). Electronic features provide with a huge opportunity to keep memory of knowledge. Obviously I am not pushing each of you to scan all their aquaristic literature with their amateur scanning device (although it would be achievable if it were coordinated and distributed to hundreds of persons, and I know some aquarists who are so much enthusiastic that they would move mountains !). I am pushing to gather all printed information and that this information is handed to people who own or know where to use professional scanners that automatically, quickly and surely transform prints into electronic characters.

* NEW : THEMES of research for scientists

Brand new researchers have joined the "Killifish family" in recent years (Aarn, Marc Bellemans, Pablo Calvino, Alessandro Cellerino, Ignacio Doadrio, Tyrone Genade, Michael Ghedotti, Tomas Hrbek, Rainer Sonnenberg, Marcello Loureiro, Ulrike Strecker, Frédéric Zentz and others).

For this newsletter, all current researchers (with an e-mail) have been asked what are their current topics of interest, what field of research they plan to explore in the medium term future and what type of help they would appreciate from aquarists in their research (needed material, either live or fixed in 95% ethyl alcohol for DNA or standard 60% alcohol for morphology/osteology, etc.). Those who were so kind to answer are listed in the table hereafter (some of them have even given their e-mail address so that you can contact them directly, but only for serious matters, of course ; along time, new data are added to a new dedicated page titled RESEARCHERS in Killi-Data online.

 

 

In the original edition of this newsletter, a table was following hereafter stating for each researcher with regular contacts with Killi-Data, his or her latest publication, themes of current research, future research, and if material was needed to fill those targets. Today this table is obsolete and it is not maintained… instead the RESEARCHERS page is regularly updated and enlarged to a lot more researchers.

 

 

 

This list of many new ventures is expecting your name, whenever you are aquarist or scientist, with your new innovative projects.
Besides, please note the important change name (by Costa himself) Nematolebias is not a genus any more. Hence, the new names for its previous components are Simpsonichthys whitei and Simpsonichthys papilliferus.

Take care and enjoy the scientific or aquaristic complexity of killifish !
Do not hesitate to ask questions for future Newsletters.

Visit frequently the website www.killi-data.org!

Thank you for your support over the years.

With my kindest regards.

Jean


I am interested in reading other Newsletters, click INFOWEB.