Text and photographs by David Marshall

The majestic Whistler Room at Pickering Memorial Hall played host to the second 2009 Ryedale and STAMPS Twinning Day.

Some of the STAMPS members enjoying TD
The well-known face of Y.A.A.S. 'A' Class Judge
Mr. Trevor Douglas

Special guest for TD was Mr. Brian Walsh of the Catfish Study Group. For the first of two excellent presentations Brian had put together an amazing illustrated talk on the structure and evolution of catfish mouths. The photographs of the dentition of Panaque species, which have replaceable teeth cartridges, had the audience amazed. For his second presentation Brian focussed on how he produces a range of fantastic wooden sculptures of fish. The audience were able to see, and touch, carvings in various stages of production. Seeing such exquisite work at close quarters brings home the high level of skill and technique Brian uses in order to create his sculptures.

Brian takes a break

Brian showing his carving tools to members of the audience

Mr. Frank Tolomeo models one of Brian's carvings

At TD the level of co-operation between our two groups is always evident. Today this was best seen through the table show as Tyne Tees Area Association FBAS Trainee Judge Mr. Darren Lamb took his first opportunity to judge to a different set of rules and standards swapping those of the FBAS for those of the Y.A.A.S. I know from experience how strange this can be but Darren coped very well. The people present played their part by bringing along a variety of fish species, 40 in total, spread over the 9 classes.

Darren judging
The 'fish craft' section was won by Sue Marshall's Galaxy Rasbora (centre).

Instead of an auction we plumped for a sales table. Mr. Malcolm Short looked after this side of the day and we had some excellent fish for sale that included Xenotoca variatus, Convict cichlids, Black throat Giradinus and Sajica cichlids.

Miss Sue Marshall's TD quiz centred on Christian names with questions about fish, sport, television, famous people (both real and fictional) and the natural world. The people taking part had great fun.

As usual all present brought along a varied selection of food for a splendid 'pot luck lunch'.

The Aquarium Gazette information stand was also present.

But at the end of the day TD is about friendship and this abounded. A big THANK YOU to Brian, all our helpers, the members of Ryedale and STAMPS and to our friends present who all combined to make another memorable day.

Finally 2010 will be a very special year for Ryedale A.S., as it will mark our 25th Anniversary. We have already been hard at work and arranged the following events:

Sunday 25th April - Open Show. To be held at Old Malton Memorial Hall, Malton, North Yorkshire.

Sunday 11th July - 25th Anniversary Day. Venue as above. Talk by Dr. David Ford, Mini-Open Show and auction.

Sunday 15th August - Twinning Day with STAMPS. Pickering Memorial Hall, North Yorkshire.