I would say it is safe to say that our first New England Regional Meeting was a success! We had 14 people in attendance, 8 which were NANFA members. We started off with introductions and coffee/snacks, we then toured the nature center and it's museum. The nature center has a bunch of aquariums, and the pond tank was definitely a hit, with natives such as bullheads, golden shiners, several Lepomis species, banded sunfish, perch, turtles, crayfish, frogs, etc.

We watched the video about native fishes from VA Tech (Fishes: Swimming in Troubled Waters), the video was well received by all. We talked about where the chapter wants to go as far as the region is concerned, and we decided that meetings were definitely in order, some as meetings with videos and speakers, as well as field trips.

We set our next meeting for February 11th, at 1 PM, at the same location on the campus of the Bristol County Agricultural School.  We will be lining up an agenda for that meeting. As expected, most of us are hot and heavy to head out collecting, so we will be planning something in the next month or so as spring nears and the ice melts. We will be booking a cabin for the convention, and hopefully we have enough to commit to it. We were happy to have in attendance two local conservation commission agents, and a forestry department person, as well as some with a general interest in fishes. Then there were the NANFA members, and here were the NANFA members in attendance:

Rick Rego, MA/New England Representative
Brian Bastarache, Mass
Dale Kutyna, Mass
George Arndt, Mass
Gary Carbonneau, NH
George Tamburri, CT
Ray Coombs, CT
Dennis Buonafede, CT

Others in attendance (hopefully soon to be NANFA members):
Peter Belanger, Mattapoisett Cons. Comm., MA
Cathal O'Brien, Taunton Cons. Comm., MA
Bill Dalpe, Rehoboth Forestry Dept.,
MA James Blaisdell, RI
Chad Rosen, MA
Keith Baker, MA

Raffle Winners:
Ray Coombs from CT won the Minnow Trap Chad Rosen from MA won the 10 gallon fish tank Everyone got back issues of AC and TFH magazines featuring native fish articles.

All in all everyone was happy to have met as an organized group (I know, the coffee was a little strong...,but the cookies and the goldfish crackers were good!). We will be planning some neat things for the future, and as always all are welcome. THANKS TO ALL IN ATTENDANCE FOR MAKING OUR FIRST MEETING A SUCCESS, as well as all those who gave us ideas for the meeting.

Rick Rego-- MA/New England NANFA Representative

For further information you can e-mail us (see below).

Rick Rego newzoo@juno.com  

Brian Bastarache bast@ici.net 

Directions to the school at: www.bristolaggie.mec.edu