Book Reviews Right Arrow Catfish Books Right Arrow Votre hobby – Les poissons-chats • Article © Marc Stabel, uploaded October 07, 2007

Votre hobby – Les poissons-chats

Title Votre hobby – Les poissons-chats
Author & (Publisher) Dr. Jürgen Schmidt (Bede Verlag, 2000)
Price £7.30
Subject Matter "Your Hobby" - all catfishes
Edition 1st, French

This book starts off with an introduction, followed by a rather large part on the catfish tank (pp 5-20). The next part is about breeding (pp 21-36), in which several families and different methods are mentioned, like Callichthyidae (egg-scatterers and bubble nest builders), Loricariidae (parental care), Ariidae (mouth brooders) and the well known cuckoo-trick of some Tanganyikan Synodontis species. Then there is the species part (pp 37-77) followed by a conclusion and a bibliography.

Contrary to most approaches this species part is alphabetical. It is therefore strange that two Auchenipterichthys species sit under “H”. Nomenclature is pretty good. Two Mystus species are mistakenly shown as pimelodid species (pp 63 and 65); one as an unknown pimelodid and the other as a variant of P. blochii. But this is a problem that occurs in other books as well. The described fishes are all not too difficult to obtain. What struck me most is that there are very few Callichthyidae and Loricariidae in the species part, but that has other reasons: both families have their own “Votre Hobby” part.

The pictures look pretty “fresh” to me, by which I mean that I haven't already seen many of them in other publications. Things of importance and marginal notes are placed in yellow coloured boxes.

Conclusion: a nice book in general for a beginner and an advanced keeper or catfish book collector might like the pictures. The german version of this book is regularly offered on Ebay. In France I had to pay 19,20 euros for the book. I don't know whether that was a tourist price or that the book is indeed 8 euros more expensive than in Germany. To be honest: if the LFS owner hadn't gone through a lot of trouble to find it for me, the book would still have been in Chambéry at this very moment.

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