Re: RE: NANFA-L-- Niagara River gobies?
Tue, 05 Apr 2005 10:31:17 -0500

Resonding to this gem of communication :-) --

Here is exactly what I was responding to. Perhaps Todd did not write
it, perhaps someone else did. The person who did write it seemed quite
interested in getting some round gobies and keeping them.
> wrote:
> >
> > Dear Todd -
> >
> > I would suggest NOT transferring ANY exotic round gobies
> > (Neogobius melanostomus) from the present waters they have invaded;
> > regardless if they have been banned yet or not.

> Well, all that said, I for one would still love to get ahold of some.
> They look really cute in the pictures. I can assure everyone that they
> would never escape into my nearby waters.

So far as providing, Todd must have missed the part where I said that
I have provided, but that far out scenarios do arise. In fact, a
colleague in another state discovered that his neighbor's home colony
of exotic reptiles had been released into a local park even though he
had specific instructions filed with family members and an institution
prepared to receive them. His wife died with him in an accident, his
daughter was en route to his home from another state, and the other
persons who were responsible had contacted the nearby relatives and
asked them to await their arrival before doing anything with the
animals. The fellow who released them claimed that he did not believe
the reptiles were able to go without food for the two days he was asked
to wait (they could, and he had been told so), and he thought they
would be better off in nature than in cages. He was interviewed and no
charges were filed after he was "counseled" by state wildlife personnel.

Yes, Todd, academicians are really terrible-in-communication. I was
unable to say in my post that transporting and keeping round gobies is
a mistake -- just couldn't manage it so it was understood. But that
was me, not academicians generally. If you want to say that someone
has done a poor job of something, just say so. But don't cast a
broader net. I could have said that aquarium hobbyist generally are
scofflaws and prone to bring about undesirable introductions, but that
would be wrong. Most are responsible.

We do have responsibilities beyond the law -- .

David L. McNeely, Ph.D., Professor of Biology
Langston University; P.O. Box 1500
Langston, OK 73050; email:
telephone: (405) 466-6025; fax: 405) 466-3307
home page

"Where are we going?" "I don't know, are we there yet?"

----- Original Message -----
From: "Crail, Todd" <tcrail-in-UTNet.UToledo.Edu>
Date: Monday, April 4, 2005 8:20 pm
Subject: RE: NANFA-L-- Niagara River gobies?

> ________________________________
> From: on behalf of
> Suppose I meet a horrible accident,
> along with all close family members, and some distant cousin with no
> more knowledge or sense than a monkey becomes responsbible for my home
> fish? I know, I'm supposed to have provided, and I have, but far out
> scenarios arise, too. So this dumb bunny sees my fish, has no idea
> what to do, and decides to stock the local "Oklahoma River"?
> I was just going to keep quiet about any of this... Not respond to
> the misunderstanding that I'm a proponent of taking home round gobies.
> In case you've missed this exchange, I had asked someone to take
> some personal responsibility for their question, and find the
> State's answer easily on the Internet... Even after my
> disappointment where I'd painted a picture where these fish were a
> POOR choice as an aquaria candidate, are incredibly disruptive to
> the environment, and led the individual knowingly to the Law,
> which should end any question of ethics or gray areas... While
> still allowing the individual to take ownership of a decision any
> which way, because they are, after all, a thinking, breathing
> human being.
> Apparently, this was confused as my question to what the law
> stated concerning such a matter, and was illustrated by "we
> couldn't keep them alive in tanks" as a main tenant of reasons one
> should want to avoid such activity. Do what I say, not what I do...
> The "dumb bunny" in your scenario is the aquarist who didn't make
> specific plans for the animals in their absence. Both my wife and
> my parents know to take all exotic fish to my fish shop I frequent
> and contact Mr. Z or now Jeff G to aid them in making decisions
> about what to do with my natives. If you haven't thought about
> this before (and I'm certainly not calling you a dumb bunny for
> not having thought of it :) it's something to consider, especially
> if you don't have a bunch of seine fanatic amigos close by!
> But back to my point...
> The tone of your post Dave, really bothered me. I find this
> something some academics seem to have profound problem over-
> communicating, because it's easier to just tell someone what to
> do, since the people they're talking to, after all, are "distant
> cousins with no more knowledge or sense than a monkey". This has
> been a gross sore spot on this email list in times past, wether
> earned by specific individuals or not.
> After last May's soiree of trying to rope in the context of this
> email list as expressed by my counterparts on the BOD, I found it
> very troubling-in-a fall event where I'd brought along some of
> those I must refer to now as "colleauges" to a NANFA public
> education event. I watched as two people who'd been in the state
> for a whole of 6 weeks combined, took the reigns as the "experts"
> for the event, sloughing away a combined 15 years of intimate
> knowledge about Ohio fishes and their interpretation to the
> public. And to add to the insult... talking to the public like
> they were 3 years old.
> I saw this situation from another side, reflected on how I might
> have handled the BOD's desire to clean up the context of the list
> postings differently, and what parts I could have understood
> better and avoided allienating anyone. I can't undo any of that,
> and have hope that the addage of "time heals all wounds" holds.
> And while I'm no longer a board member and am NOT exercising any
> kind of judiciary sway on this matter... I think the pendulum has
> swung back from the other direction, and folks who may seemed were
> favored in last year's mess... Think carefully about how they
> portray themselves and ideas.
> I also wanted to thank Scott Schlueter for his response to
> Andrew's initial email as well. He expressed everything I think
> others were trying to express, but in a way that leads to personal
> discovery and consequent ownership of the right answer.
> Sincerely,
> Todd "thumbs on the pelvic fin and squeeeeeeze" Crail
> The Muddy Maumee Madness, Toledo, OH
> It's never too late to have a happy childhood.
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