Dan Powell

Dan Powell

Dan is a central Ohio native who has been keeping aquariums for at least the past twenty years. He has kept and bred fish spanning the gamut of freshwater aquarium species and was an active CAFÉ member for years. He also spent over ten years as a custom aquarium and ornamental pond installation/maintenance specialist. Recently he has turned away from the aquarium industry to more scientific endeavors, although not away from fishes. Currently he is a PhD candidate at Texas A&M University where he studies the evolutionary consequences of early generation hybridization using two closely related species of northern swordtails Xiphophorus birchmanni (sheepshead swordtail) and X. malinche (highland swordtail). This research requires him to travel frequently to the upper Pánuco drainage in the mountains of central Mexico in search of his study organisms. His presentation will touch on swordtail life history and aquarium husbandry as well as field work in Mexico, but the focus will be on reconciling how scientists and the different factions of the aquarium hobby view hybridization as well as the nuances of hybridization and within population variation as a creative and destructive forces.