January 12, 2013

On Saturday, January 12th 2013, the NJAGC held a meeting at the home of Ken Onulak.

In attendance were:

Brendan A
Glenn M
Jerry S
Jason T
Johnny A
Marko D
Jonathan W
Ken O
Stanley K
Frank Z
Darek K
Khanh T
Darin P
Richard M

This meeting at Ken Onulak’s home was an early one. Featuring a 200 gallon tear down, a brief meeting, a huge plant swap and a rigorous and painful 150 gallon tank move from Ken’s basement to a truck which took everyone’s help in one way or another.

If you arrived early you were put to work!!! The 200 gallon tank took many hands to first get water siphoned so we could get to the overflow plumbing. Trying to minimize the water that was on the floor Ken devised a system of hose to make the draining of the tank easier.

When the water got to a certain point, out came the plumbing. It was exciting to see what Ken had done to keep this monster of a tank clean. When Glenn arrived he brought a bucket (that you could take a bath in) as well as some other tools to help with the removal of plants. Once the plumbing was removed, Glenn scaled the ladder like a seasoned mountain climber and started the plant extraction. He started with a huge piece of driftwood followed by large selection of Crypts, Anubias and Ferns. Like a well oiled machine the plants went straight down the line to those who were at the table.

At the table Jerry, Khanh, Brendan, and a few others went to town cleaning and bagging the plants which were up for grabs. Let me tell you, these guys literally worked their fingers to bone.

Next phase of the tear down was to recapture all of the fish. Though catching fish in clear water was hard, the challenge of doing it in murky water looked similar to a wild collection trip.

Many species came out the tank and found new homes with the members in attendance. Pizza arrived just in the nick of time as the hard work sure made everyone hungry.

Jerry started the meeting by announcing that Darek was taking pictures for NJAGC forum avatars. He stated though it is not mandatory to have your picture as an avatar for the forum, that it helps everyone know who you are at meetings and gives a personal touch when talking with someone on the forum. Other business included a quick Treasurer’s report, and Jerry’s plan to take a day trip up to Massachusetts for a joint club meeting in the month of September. All that are interested should contact the President for further details. After the brief meeting the plants started to find new homes. The ones that didn’t will be placed up on the internet for sale and proceeds will be donated to NJAGC.

After that came the second “FUN Part” of the evening, a move of somewhat large proportions. Downstairs in Ken’s basement was an old fashioned 150 gallon tank ready to be transported to a new home.

Standing in the way was its weight followed by an almost vertical climb, then an epic walk and finally a strenuous lift into the back of a pickup. I cannot say enough about the members who bore down and accomplished the seemingly impossible.

Hats off to you and thank you for helping me get it to its new location.

Ken also has a very healthy 75G tank powered by LED light which he assembled himself.

Ken keeps a few types of South American cichlids

and a pair of fully grown angels.

He also has  a 10 gal terrarium filled with Bacopa and Anubia as well as other types of plants. In addition his terrarium provides shelter for Scincella lateralis which was collected locally in his backyard.

As Secretary of NJAGC I would like to thank Ken for holding the meeting and inviting everyone into his home, being as generous as he was with his plants and fish, and wish him the best of luck in his new adventures as he plans to move out of state. Ken I know it’s months off, but this club is losing a chunk of it when you leave.

Written by: Jason Tessitore, NJAGC Secretary.

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