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About Shef

Everybody in this hobby has one moment in their life that they saw a particular fish and fell in love with them. My moment goes back to my childhood when I was 7 years old. A cousin of mine, who is 8-9 years older than me, showed me a few native, tiny fish, he caught in a local stream. He had them in a big glass jar. I was amazed by it and as you all can guess I was hooked! Everytime my friends and I went to the local stream to swim, I was bringing plastic bags with me in case I saw some fish in there to catch. I did catch some as I got older and brought them home but they never lived long enough for me to enjoy them.

When I grew up and learned how to swim and free-dive in my high school years, my father got me a snorkel,diving mask, and a pair of fins. That started a whole new chapter on my fish/underwater passion. I was just snorkeling underwater for hours when we went for a swim in the summer. I was totally forgetting about the outside world and getting lost watching the fish under the water. I soon realized that only having a fish tank would fullfill my needs of being able to see underwater anytime I wanted or needed to. 

Finally I got my first fish tank when I went to college. A friend of a friend left a 20 gallon long fish tank at the apartment I was living at that year. It was so dirty you couldn't see any fish in there. I knew I had to clean it, and take care of the fish in it. Especially when  my friend told me it could be mine if I liked it and would take care of it. Of course!When I cleaned the whole thing without knowing anything about chlorine being in tap water and the  nitrogen cycle,looking back I am shocked all the  fish didn't die. I sit across the tank and watched it for hours. It was magical!

After 1 year of keeping and breeding live bearers and seliing it then back to the stores for fish food, I found African Cichlids and had to get some. Especially yellow labs since they are one of the brightest colored cichlids out there. Within 6 months I started breeding them, and even rented a fishroom and tried to run a business while I was still in college. But as you can guess, not having an income, and being student, I couldn't keep up with the expenses of the fish room and shut it down after a few months.

Today I have 140 tanks as of right now and running a successful fish business. Raising and selling cichlids is the love of my life, hope the wife doesn't read this part. 🙂 But truly it's a blessing to do what I love, and love what I do. I don't feel like it’s a job at all. I love developing my own lines of selectively bred hybrids especially OB Peacocks and Haps which I specialize in. But I also love the pure species of African Cichlids and try my best to improve the lines I have with every generation to provide you guys the best of the best.There’s plans in the works that are being kept under wraps for the time being…but stay tuned!

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