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ACA 2004

Dear friends,

>From 22 July through 25 July, the Rocky Mountain Cichlid Association hosted 
the annual American Cichlid Association (ACA) convention in Denver, Colorado.  
We were very fortunate this year to have Anton Lamboj, making his US debut, 
featured as a keynote speaker.

Dr. Lamboj presented three programs: one for the Apistogramma Study Group 
(ASG) and two for the ACA.  For the ASG, Dr. Lamboj put together a specialized 
presentation, focussing on Nanochromis, Parananochromis and Pelvicachromis.  
Although not directly stated, it appears that Pelvicachromis will be split at the 
generic level sometime next year.  The two ACA programs focussed on 
collecting in Gabon and the tribes, genera and species of western Africa respectively.  
The latter program was an overview that roughly mirrored Dr. Lamboj's new 
book, "The Cichlid Fishes of Western Africa."

All three programs were simply outstanding; not only were they informative 
and well-presented, but funny as well.  Dr. Lamboj has quite a sense of humor, 
and the audience's laughter made for a welcome alternative to the usual stoic 
presentation style of some scientists.

For the event, yours truly made available copies of Dr. Lamboj's new book 
that were offered by the ACA.  All were sold out by the second day of the 
convention.  If one reads but a single book this year, I highly recommend that it be 
this one.

Also of note to dwarf cichlid hobbyists was a program focussing on the 
Apistogramma agassizii species-group that was presented by Mike Wise.  Mike did an 
excellent job zeroing in on this and related lineages as well as their 
biotopes, distribution, geographic isolation and distinguishing characteristics.

On a more personal note, clearly one of the convention highlights for me was 
meeting our Mary Bailey.  For the record, she is even more lovely in person 
than one might expect.

Thank you and do well by your cichlids!

All the best,

Randall Kohn

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