Peter Unmack is currently in the U.S. with his family visiting his in-laws. He and his family are healthy and doing well. He gave a presentation Thursday evening, January 16, 2020, to the Missouri Aquarium Society (MASI) which is a local St. Louis fish club. His presentation was primarily on his Running River Rainbow Fish Project, but he also talked about the drought and fires in Australia and three other species of rainbow fish in threat of extinction due to cross-breeding that he is working on. I ate dinner with him along with other MASI members, and we were able to catch up a little on NANFA.
Peter reported that the current drought in Australia is the worst on record. Fires are widespread in New South Wales and other areas of the eastern part of the country. There are isolated fires on the rest of the continent. However, the record drought covers almost all of the country. He has grave concerns about the survival of much of the wildlife. Having grown up in Australia, where droughts are common, he has never before seen anything like it. Wild animals are approaching people in search of water. Many small streams have dried up and rivers have been reduced to isolated pools. There are several pockets of adequate rainfall, and where he works at the University of Canberra is one of them. The running rainbow fish project is in another area that has received adequate rainfall.
Peter asked me about the overall health of NANFA and specifically about several NANFA members. He continues to be interested in us and our organization as he lives his life on the other side of the world.