Rare visit for Tropiquaria fish

This is The West Country: SHAUN Stevens and Becki, from Beale Park, load the fish into Beale Parks van ready for their adventure. Photo: Shaun Stevens SHAUN Stevens and Becki, from Beale Park, load the fish into Beale Parks van ready for their adventure. Photo: Shaun Stevens

ENDANGERED fish from Tropiquaria are going on a special trip across the country for an exhibition at Beale Park, a zoo near Reading.

Three species of Mexican Goodeid were collected on Monday for an exhibition at the zoo.

They are small live-bearing fish that don’t even have English names because of the scarcity and similarity to each other. For the dedicated fish lover, they are: ‘Ataenobius toweri’, ‘Skiffia sayula’ and ‘Xenotoca eisini’.

All the fish supplied to Beale Park were bred at Tropiquaria as part of their conservation operation.

Aquarist Shaun Stevens said: “These are small fish which, because of their limited range, are all in imminent danger of extinction, if not already extinct in the wild.

“This is because of the local farmers’ alterations to streams and lakes for irrigation purposes.

“These are species that small zoos and aquaria can conserve easily without major investment, and they also supply students with a relatively easily researched conservation project for each species.

“By keeping them in a number of UK collections we are able to have a back-up stock for possible re-introduction in the wild, if it ever becomes possible.”

Shaun is hoping to visit Mexico later this year to look at the problems there.

Tropiquaria is open daily from 10.30- 5pm.

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