May Meeting: Rusty Wessel

Join us for an in-person meeting! 

2022 05 15 Wessel

Rusty Wessel speaks on “Keeping Cichlids with Livebearers”

About the Speaker

Rusty Wessel maintains over 8,000 gallons of freshwater aquariums in a state of the art fish house constructed specifically for fish. The 90-plus aquariums predominantly contain cichlids and livebearers, which he successfully raises and breeds.

Rusty's specialty is Central American fishes. He has successfully collected fish from the countries of Belize, Costa Rica, Cuba, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, Mexico and Uruguay, and the continent of Africa. If it lives in fresh water, chances are that Rusty has either caught it or been bitten or stung by it. He has been collecting since 1983, and is recognized by other experienced collectors as one of the best. He has made over 150 trips, and has introduced many new species to the aquarium hobby. In 1991, Rusty discovered a beautiful and elusive new cichlid in an area that had already been thoroughly collected. In the June 1996 edition of Tropical Fish Hobbyist magazine, Dr. Robert Rush Miller, emeritus professor of the University of Michigan, described and named this species Theraps wesseli

Rusty is also a prolific author and photographer, as his writings and photographs have appeared in a large number of specialized publications, such as Aquarium Fish Magazine, Aquarist and Pondkeeper, Buntbarsche Bulletin, Cichlid News, Ad Konings' Cichlids Yearbooks, Freshwater and Marine Aquarium and Tropical Fish Hobbyist.

He is past chair of the ACA board of trustees (1990) and chaired the 1992 and 2014 conventions. In addition, he is an active solicitor for the "Guy Jordan Endowment Fund", set up by the ACA to fund cichlid research. Rusty has been awarded with the greatest honor the American Cichlid Association gives to its distinguished members, the ACA fellowship in 1997. On the local level, he is currently treasurer for the Louisville Tropical Fish Fanciers.

Rusty has lectured and judged numerous fish shows throughout the United States, including the annual "Florida Tropical Fish Farmers" show and several ACA conventions.

Covid Note

Illinois has mandated masks for indoor gatherings. Please wear a mask at this event.

GCCA Meeting Agenda

  1. President Jason Libasci offers his opening remarks and business meeting (20 minutes)
  2. Speaker (1 hour)
  3. Raffle winners announced
  4. Fish Auction

Guests are welcome!

All guests are welcome, but if you attend more than twice we ask that you Join or Renew Membership in our club.

Meeting Location

Chicago Hilton Northbrook
2855 Milwaukee Ave, Northbrook, IL 60062
Map and Directions:



Event Properties

Event Date 05-15-2022 6:00 pm
Event End Date 05-15-2022 9:00 pm
Location Hilton Chicago Northbrook