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Enjoy Your Catfish

Title Enjoy Your Catfish
Author & (Publisher) Albert J. Klee (Pet Library Ltd., 1967)
Price £1.99
Subject Matter All aquarium catfish available in the 1960's
Edition 1st, English

Article © Marc Stabel, uploaded January 01, 2002.

If you're wondering what the catfish hobby was like in the late 60's, you should really try to find this booklet. It has 32 pages, 21 rather unknown colour pictures and 1 drawing, it's wire-stitched and it has no index. But then, who needs one with so few pages? The book is divided into eight sections. There's an introduction on page 3, then two parts about Corydoras and bubble nest builders (pages 3-12), part four is about sucker mouth cats (p. 13-23), five covers the glass catfishes (p.23-25), six the upside-down catfishes (p.25-27), part seven is about miscellaneous catfish (p.28-30) and finally eight is about the pronunciation of the Latin names (p.30-32). That's all, the whole catfish family in 32 pages! Then what is the charm of this booklet?

It was published around 1967. Even then there were already 70 known species of Corydoras. But all sucker mouths came from five (5!) genera, Synodontis nigriventris is regarded as "a sensation" and the miscellaneous section covers Doras hancocki, D. spinosissimus, Leiocassis siamensis, Parauchenoglanis macrostoma, Clarias (no specific species), Malapterurus (only for connoisseurs) and Sorubim lima. And that's what makes this one so irrisistable. The book demonstrates just how few catfishes were known in those days, especially when compared to the abundance of today. Besides, as far as I know, this is the first book solely on catfishes.

I found it on a second hand book market and had to pay 1 Euro (approx. 65 pence or 1US$). This title is definitely out of print, but I'd recommend you try to find one on the net or in a bookshop. Forget about valid names, just enjoy this booklet and don't forget to read the brilliant conclusion on page 32, nature's strangest fraternity indeed!

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