High Tide Aquatics founder and owner Ken Colby introduces Matt Wandell at a recent in-person, in-store speaker event in the new Oakland, California, aquarium retailer.
High Tide Aquatics founder and owner Ken Colby introduces Matt Wandell at a recent in-person, in-store speaker event in the new Oakland, California, aquarium retailer.

It’s great to see in-person reefkeeping events large and small returning to the aquarium hobby in this somewhat post-Pandemic era.

Last month, High Tide Aquatics in Oakland, California, held its second “Cocktails and Coral Talk” with expert aquarist Matt Wandell. Wandell, a respected figure in the aquarium community, is a veteran public aquarist and is currently the Husbandry Operations Project Manager at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

According to High Tide: “Cocktails & Coral Talk is a monthly speaker series presented by High Tide Aquatics, engaging groundbreaking marine biologists, aquarists, and hobbyists in casual conversation with the community. Speakers will cover topics from animal husbandry to biological chemistry and everything in between in a local, intimate setting. Attendees will have an opportunity to meet, ask questions, and learn directly from the experts.”

At the most recent Cocktails and Coral Talk, Matt Wandell presented a thought-provoking look at how to think through the husbandry challenges of “Expert Only” fishes.

After sharing his secrets for keeping the Purple Queen Anthias, Pseudanthias tuka, Said Wandell: “My intent is to basically teach a philosophy, not really go through and teach every difficult species of fish that’s difficult to keep. It’s more about how to think about it.” Wandell rightly points out that many reef aquarists have started taking a certain holistic approach to the types of coral they keep, but we’re still not applying the same methods of thinking through husbandry challenges when it comes to fishes. He promotes a fishes-point-of-view approach and explains how aquarists can reframe husbandry challenges to maximize their chance at success.

We’re delighted to share that these presentations have been made available to a broader audience via High Tide Aquatic’s YouTube Channel, where you can see more from this series. Moreover, it’s encouraging to see an aquarium retailer taking a leadership role in educating their customers and creating a culture of knowledge and learning. These ideals continue to be paramount to successful reefkeeping!

Wouldn’t it be great if every metro had local fish ships and communities that supported this level of in-person learning and reef camaraderie? Do you have a reef retailer holding events like this in your town or city? Tell us and your fellow aquarists in the comments!

Watch Matt Wandell’s Talk – “Expert Only” Fishes: They’re not as tough as you might think – brought to you by High Tide Aquatics!

If you’re able to make it, High Tide Aquatics has already announced the next installment of “Cocktails and Coral Talk” for February 19, 2023, at 5:00 PM, featuring Chad Clayton, Live Feeds Supervisor at Reed Mariculture who CORAL readers will recognize as the company behind Reef Nutrition products! You can stay on top of these events via the High Tide Aquatics website, as well as their social media platforms.

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