Konrad Lorenz a forgotten Aquarist

Konrad Lorenz might be an unknown figure to most aquarists. In fact, I only learned about him not from aquarium books but from Life books. I chanced upon this book in the school library and saw a book on animal behaviour. And in one of the photo essay sections was about a man who was able to train water fowl to believe he was there mother.

So there I was looking at the pictures of a man who reminded me of Col Sanders with water fowl following him around and with the smallest one sitting on his head whenever he was swimming along with the waterfowl in the pond.

Several, several years pass. I am now at National Book Store, looking over the latest batch of pre-owned books for sale when I met Herr Lorenz again. This time not in pictures but in his own written words and drawings.

King Solomon's Ring: New Light on Animal Ways
written and illustrated by Konrad Lorenz
translated by Marjorie Ken Wilson
with the Foreward by Julian Huxley

The book was reprinetd by the Reprint Society of London.

The book of course was Lorenz's life and his work with animals. It is an interesting read for animal lovers. As an aquarist though what I found interesting was his chapters devoted to aquariums and aquarium fish. Herr Lorenz before becoming a naturalist was an aquarist!

Herr Lorenz even devoted two chapters on aquarium fish. The second chapter of his book was entitled "Something that does no damage: The Aquarium" and it is a lively discourse on how to set-up an aquarium and how to maintain it. For me, it stands out as one of the most informative and lively essay on aquariums. Through out the book he described the aquarium as world and delved extensively into the behaviour of the stickleback and the fighting fish, Betta splendens.

Truly an interesting book.


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