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  #51  
Old 10/24/2007, 04:00 PM
hreef hreef is offline
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I just saw Expedition Pacific Abyss with John and Rich. It's exciting to find a new species and John and Rich can prove it!
  #52  
Old 10/24/2007, 08:26 PM
freedive43 freedive43 is offline
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To try and answer a few questions here goes: The fish was not fed before we sent it out. We shipped the fish 48 hours after it was caught. If we fed it, it would create waste matter in the shipping water which is not good.
Females and juveniles have a better track record at captive adaptation. The orange face mask on the specimen collected is still developing and hasn't reached full coloration. I think possibly this was a female in the last stages of changing into a male. Also, males usually travel with a harem of females whereas this fish was alone. I will keep in contact with the buyer to see how this fish is doing in the long term, but I'm sure they will give it the best care available.
Yes the fish are rare, but only because they are very deep in the MHI. The population is not going extinct because we caught this fish.
As to the exact collection location and depth -- well that's a trade secret =) Hopefully Copps won't spill the beans...
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  #53  
Old 10/24/2007, 09:02 PM
marinebetta marinebetta is offline
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Hi Rufus,

Any chance of us hearing the story of how you caught it? No need for collection location and depth...just an exciting blow-by-blow account of the collection
  #54  
Old 10/24/2007, 10:23 PM
All Delight All Delight is offline
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great story
  #55  
Old 10/24/2007, 11:06 PM
davelin315 davelin315 is offline
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Thanks for sharing, John, it's always neat to see what you've got brewing, although I would have liked to have seen it in person swimming around at your house or in one of the tanks over at BRK (sheesh, Byron, I thought you said that you were the master of copps...). Anyway, I'm still waiting for you to capture that elusive Pomacanthus coppolino...

Looking forward to hearing more about this soon!
  #56  
Old 10/25/2007, 04:01 AM
copps copps is offline
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Wow! First of all, thanks everyone for the kind words... this has been such a great trip in so many ways, and it's great to share it with you guys who could understand its significance... My coworkers out here in Hawaii just do not understand! My wife gets out here tomorrow for a little vacation to Molokai, Maui, and Lanai, and I have to somehow try and explain this trip, including the significance of this fish... I believe I'll just have her read this thread

The strokes of irony just keep coming... the owner of the store who got this fish in Japan I know, and he emailed me after reading this thread! He also pointed out that his shirt looks good on me, and I realized that I had his store's shirt on in the photo with Rich Pyle and John Earle that Frank Baensch took of us... just two days before catching this fish! I know him independently of Rufus, so this just shows what a small world this is!


I also just returned from dinner with Charles Delbeek of the Waikiki Aquarium (and co-author of the Reef Aquarium Series) who I've known for years... (edit: looks like he just posted!) he'll attest to how many personatus questions I nail him with each time we meet up. For those of you who don't know, the Waikiki Aquarium is working on a NWHI Exhibit featuring Genicanthus personatus. I took the idea of a coral raffle to benefit this exhibit to my local club and we ran with it with the hopes of raising $500 to get our name on the wall... we raised just under $2000! I encourage you guys to read more here and donate if possible, or organize something like WAMAS did... The waikiki Aquarium is an aquarist's aquarium and Charles and company do a great job there... By the way, they were the first and only aquarium to successfully spawn and raise Genicanthus personatus in captivity by the way... if you want Shamu go to Sea World but if you want beautiful tanks with the rarest Pacific reef fish collection in the world go here!

Quote:
Originally posted by alikatoes
You were a key member to the crew! Without a boatman that dive would have been impossible or very risky. Your precision line dropping insured a proper deco for us and the fish. That was hands down the highlight of my dive career for so many reasons.

By the way I was indeed terrified to be the first guy to jump in the water with a school of sharks breaking the surface while feeding. Rufus' foot on my back, kicking me away from the saftey of the boat was really motivating though...

Big thanks to the whole crew (you too John) for a great dive day.
Thanks Alika! While money can buy a personatus, no amount of money could buy a trip like we had, and that's pretty friggin cool! Memories never die like fish do!

Quote:
Originally posted by jmaneyapanda
In the pic with the bandit, whats the deal with the scribbled? I didnt think they were endemic to hawaii. Am I wrong?
Jeremy, Hawaii is also used as a tranship point for fish south and west, like Christmas Island, the Marshalls, and more and more Australia where the scribbled is from... There are no Chaetodontoplus in Hawaii...

Quote:
Originally posted by freedive43
Aloha all,
That's quite a nice documentation you put together John. I am glad that you were able to join us on what was perhaps the best dive trip ever. As a follow-up, the personatus is doing superbly. I shipped it out a few hours ago to Japan. Hopefully Mr. Endo and the boys will be able to get a few high quality pictures of it.
Rufus you're the man! This was all you... the first one you see and you catch it! What a day... and you even had time to help that fellow diver out! One story I forgot to add for you guys... after all of this craziness, right before going into port we came upon another fish collector's boat and realized one of the divers was bent pretty bad... Between the three rebreather divers they had some pure O2 and 50/50 O2/air to help this guy out... Rufus himself went down to about 20 feet with this guy and sat with him there for an hour as he offgased... all this with the personatus in the boat. The guy was an experienced collector but was very shaken up as he'd never been bent before like that... hopefully the efforts of the team saved this guy from a date with the deco chamber and a multiple thousand dollar bill as he didn't have insurance... I thought that was a cool story and it shows that these guys help out regardless of the $$$ they have in the livewells below...

Quote:
Originally posted by trottman
what if this was the only male left in the ocean? then i would say that you made the population extinct. why would you take a fish that is not only super rare in the hobby, but extremely rare in the wild?
I really hope you are joking here... this wasn't a black rhino we collected...

Quote:
Originally posted by JCurry
Sweet fish, John what else did you guys catch or see?
The only other fish caught on this dive was Apolemichthys arcuatus... the Hawaiian bandit angelfish as I have pictured...
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  #57  
Old 10/25/2007, 04:12 AM
copps copps is offline
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Quote:
Originally posted by JCDelbeek
John, two points of import you did not mention ... how deep was it collected at and was it eating before being shipped out?

In the Waikiki Aquariums' experience, the males are extremely difficult to wean over to artificial foods. For that reason, when we have collected them in the past we have always collected juveniles.

Some have reported significant populations of this species off the Waianae coast of Oahu at around 450 ft., so they are here, but as has been mentioned, not easily collected.

I have heard they can be found on some sea mounts off the NE coast of Hawaii at SCUBA depths, I have also seen a pair of immature females at 80' off of Molokini Crater back on the late 90's.

Aloha!
JCD
Hey again JCD... you're very lucky to have seen those in person at Molokini... That seems to be the only place they've popped up in shallow water at on multiple occasions in the MHI...

Quote:
Originally posted by freedive43

As to the exact collection location and depth -- well that's a trade secret =) Hopefully Copps won't spill the beans...
It was collected in Waikiki at 10 feet depth by the Hilton Hawaiian Village... between two tourists from Wisconsin... sorry Rufus, I couldn't hold it in!
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- John

Attention to detail!

Just say NO to detritus

What is recommended to the novice and what experienced reefers do are two different things.
  #58  
Old 10/25/2007, 08:25 AM
Armson Armson is offline
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Quote:
Rufus you're the man! This was all you... the first one you see and you catch it! What a day... and you even had time to help that fellow diver out! One story I forgot to add for you guys... after all of this craziness, right before going into port we came upon another fish collector's boat and realized one of the divers was bent pretty bad... Between the three rebreather divers they had some pure O2 and 50/50 O2/air to help this guy out... Rufus himself went down to about 20 feet with this guy and sat with him there for an hour as he offgased... all this with the personatus in the boat. The guy was an experienced collector but was very shaken up as he'd never been bent before like that... hopefully the efforts of the team saved this guy from a date with the deco chamber and a multiple thousand dollar bill as he didn't have insurance... I thought that was a cool story and it shows that these guys help out regardless of the $$$ they have in the livewells below...

That is an extremely cool thing to do for someone. Especially with that fish sitting on the boat.

Hey Rufus how deep have you taken that Rebreather?


-B
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  #59  
Old 10/25/2007, 09:30 AM
JCurry JCurry is offline
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John thanks for letting us share in you increditable trip. One day I'm going to make it out to see the Waikiki Aquarium. Thanks
  #60  
Old 10/25/2007, 01:22 PM
freedive43 freedive43 is offline
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A few feet shy of 400.
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Into the depths we go...
  #61  
Old 10/25/2007, 01:41 PM
LargeAngels LargeAngels is offline
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How cold is the water down there?
  #62  
Old 10/25/2007, 01:48 PM
ezcompany ezcompany is offline
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awesome story copps, thanks for sharing!
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  #63  
Old 10/25/2007, 10:26 PM
Outerbank Outerbank is offline
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Wow!!! Great catch!! That is a beautiful fish!!
  #64  
Old 10/26/2007, 03:54 PM
John Dawe John Dawe is offline
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Did the 'bent' diver make a full recovery?
  #65  
Old 10/28/2007, 08:19 AM
marinebetta marinebetta is offline
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Looks like he's settling down nicely in Japan....

http://www.blueharbor.co.jp/factory/...hes/#entry-929
  #66  
Old 10/28/2007, 11:24 PM
alikatoes alikatoes is offline
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I hear the diver made a "full recovery". Hes going to be fine.
  #67  
Old 10/28/2007, 11:51 PM
John Dawe John Dawe is offline
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Thanks for the update on the diver.
  #68  
Old 11/03/2007, 11:06 PM
copps copps is offline
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Hey guys, I just heard from Koji and the personatus is doing well and eating mysis! We could all be happy for that... It is on sale now for $10,000... You could see video of the fish feeding here... The fish is housed with a very rare Prognathodes guyanensis. This fish has extra significance as it was collected by Heath Laetari before he was killed doing what he loved... read more about it here...

Anyway, I'm back from this amazing trip to Hawaii and recovering from the jet lag... an amazing trip in so many ways, and thanks to my work sending me each year I have now dived and visited all of the Hawaiian Islands... you guys that live there are too friggin' lucky! Anyway, many amazing experiences I won't clog the thread with, but another first was diving with a tiger shark! Check out this shot below... I could easily say though the most dangerous thing I did on the trip was a mule ride in Molokai... read more about it at www.muleride.com. What they don't tell you is that 90% of the ride you're on a cliff where one false step by your mule would be sure death in 5-50 seconds depending on how high up you were!
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Attention to detail!

Just say NO to detritus

What is recommended to the novice and what experienced reefers do are two different things.
  #69  
Old 11/04/2007, 12:08 AM
Solitaryensis Solitaryensis is offline
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Awesome thread, Copps. Makes me feel even worse about not visiting any LFSs when i was in Tokyo last year. I am, however, headed to Hawaii for NYE so ill be stopping by the Waikiki Aquarium
  #70  
Old 11/04/2007, 09:19 AM
mgny mgny is offline
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Hey John, thanks for sharing the amazing trip. Mules, tigers, and a $10000 angel, you keep it intresting!!! On a side note your corals are killer!! Thanks again , Mike
  #71  
Old 11/07/2007, 01:26 AM
10810 10810 is offline
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Hi John, Andrew from S.A. Fantastic story really enjoyed it.
I know what it’s like to catch a fish that is hard to come by (although nowhere near as rare as the personatus) There is a great feeling of elation as the fish hits the back of the net and you do a half turn to seal the fish in.
Well done to the catchers.
  #72  
Old 11/07/2007, 03:36 AM
BangkokMatt BangkokMatt is offline
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Thanks for a great thread
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I've spent a lot of money on booze, women and fish. The rest I just squandered.
  #73  
Old 11/26/2007, 10:00 AM
msman825 msman825 is offline
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thanks for posting john
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  #74  
Old 11/26/2007, 11:41 AM
danfrith danfrith is offline
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Thanks john! Very interesting.
 

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