Killifish Excerpts fromFreedlaendische Suesswasserfische
(Foreign Freshwater Fishes)
By John Paul Arnold and Dr. Ernst Ahl
Translator: George J. MaierF.A.K.A.
Editor: Robert J. Goldstein
Assistant Editor: Bobby L. Middlebrooks
Production Editor: Robert L. Horton F.A.K.A.
Technical Editor: Albert J. Klee F.A.K.A.
Published by the AMERICAN KILLIFISH ASSOCIATION under the Direction of its Technical
Publications Committee, Albert J. Klee, Chairman.1966.
When Fremdlaendische Suesswasserfische appeared in 1936 (Braunschweig, Germany), it represented a milestone in aquarium literature. The original volume (it was never reprinted) consisted of 592 pages and over 700 black and white illustrations. In a sense, it has never really been surpassed, for we know of no book currently available (even Sterba) that matches it in conciseness, clarity, and efficiency. Fremdlaendische Suesswasserfische is a catalog of aquarium fishes imported into Germany up to 1936, each entry describing the care, breeding, and behavior of the species. It is not a handbook in the sense of Exotic Aquarium Fishes (Innes), since there are no general chapters on aquarium principles, plants, diseases, etc. Its authors were two of Germany’s leading aquarists. John Paul Arnold was held in roughly the same esteem as William T. Innes in our own country, and Dr. Ernst Ahl was not only a prominent aquarist, but a professional ichthyologist as well. (Berlin Zoological Museum). The names of both of these gentlemen are forever commemorated in the scientific names of a number of our familiar aquarium fishes, e.g. Aphyosemion arnoldi and Aphyosemion calliurum ahli. In 1965, the Technical Publications Committee of the AMERICAN KILLIFISH ASSOCIATION proposed that the Association publish a translation of the killifish portions of Arnold and Ahl’s book. The Board of Trustees approved, and the translation was made by George J. Maier, Fellow of the Association. The painstaking work of editing and final typing of the manuscript was completed by Robert J., Goldstein (presently Editor of the Journal of the AmericanKillifish Association [Dr. Goldstein was the JAKA editor at the time this Foreword was written and again is the editor as of May, 2010]), assisted by AKA member Bobby L. Middlebrooks. The technical editing and photography was supplied by AKA Fellow, Albert J. Klee, and the production of the final product including the typing of the masters, supervision of printing, etc., was accomplished by AKA Fellow, Robert L. Horton. This was truly a team project in the fullest sense of the term. The manuscript in your hands now has been edited with regard to correct nomenclature in that the scientific names used represent the current usage of the AMERICAN KILLIFISH ASSOCIATION, not that of Arnold and Ahl. In many instances, a “REMARKS” section has been provided to make clear the extent of such alterations from the original manuscript and/or comments clarifying confusing portions of the text. Although in the original each illustration accompanied its own entry, we have gathered them into groups to effect certain economies in printing. The order of the entries is not necessarily that of the original but in any case an Index has been prepared to afford the reader quick access to any entry. Although admittedly dated, Fremdlaendische Suesswasserfische is an important historical document for the killifish fancier, and a wealth of useful information in the bargain.
Foreword to the new publication
By Anthony Terceira
Many of the newer members American Killifish Association have not had access to some of the very early publications of the AKA. Accordingly, in reproducing this translation and reprint, my thoughts were that they would enjoy having a copy of one of the AKA’s earliest publications. So I decided to scan my copy of the Arnold and Ahl publication, which was originally printed on a mimeograph machine. As the project developed, I contacted Robert Ellermann to ask him if I could use his copy of the publication, as I had some soiled pages and poor scans. Bobby graciously lent me his copy to finalize the scanning and preliminary OCR editing. Charles Harrison volunteered to work with the scanned manuscript to convert the original Courier typeface into one of the more modern fonts. He spent endless hours converting the type and helping me edit the manuscript.The edited manuscript was then presented to the AKA’s Board of Trustees for consideration and publication. Once the BOT approved the project, Marshall Ostrow volunteered to perform the final edit and assemble the layout. The many hours he spent on the project ensured that it would represent the original manuscript as closely as possible.The manuscript itself has not been changed except for the typeface and proper italization for genus and species names. The nomenclature was retained as it was in the original German document. The value of this document lies in its original overall format. This introduction to the original publication clearly reflects the cooperative efforts of both the original AKA members and those currently involved in its re-publication. My special thanks go to every AKA member who stepped forward to help make this historic publication of the American Killifish Association available to the membership.