CORAL Magazine’s 2020 Retrospective

08 Jan, 2021

Farewell to Bob Fenner and Jack Randall: Looking Back at 2020

For many, 2020 was the worst of years, with many people suffering grievous losses. The CORAL family said farewell to the much-loved Bob Fenner, and to the world’s greatest reef fish ichthyologist Dr. Jack Randall. We pause to look back at the stories most read and recommended by our readers and editors.

Bob Fenner as a young southern California marine biologist.

#1 – The Passing of Robert M. Fenner, 1952-2020

A great friend and charter contributor to CORAL Magazine, Robert M. (Bob) Fenner died in his sleep at his home in San Diego, California, on May 7, 2020. His family said the apparent cause of death was a heart attack. He was 67 and actively working as a writer, underwater photographer, aquatics educator, and internet publisher. Read more…

Dr. John E. “Jack” Randall
May 22, 1924 – April 26, 2020
Dr. John E. “Jack” Randall
May 22, 1924 – April 26, 2020

#2 – Aloha, Dr. Jack Randall (1924-2020) World’s Foremost Marine Ichthyologist

The science world is still counting the number of fish species he described—somewhere north of 830—but Dr. John E. “Jack” Randall will be remembered as one of the greatest ichthyologists of all time. Read more…

Celebrating its 20th anniversary during July, 2020, LiveAquaria is about to enter an new chapter as parent company Petco announces a transition to new ownership for the aquarium livestock company.
Celebrating its 20th anniversary during July, 2020, LiveAquaria is about to enter an new chapter as parent company Petco announces a transition to new ownership for the aquarium livestock company.

#3 – PETCO Sells LiveAquaria To A Third Party

Celebrating its 20th anniversary during July 2020, LiveAquaria enter a new chapter as parent company Petco announces a transition to new ownership for the aquarium livestock company. Look back at the annoucement…

Pablo Tepoot's Moorish Idol aquarium in late 2019
Pablo Tepoot’s Moorish Idol aquarium in late 2019

#4 – Pablo Tepoot’s Two-Year-Old Shoal of Moorish Idols

CORAL Editor Matt Pedersen speaks with New Life Spectrum founder Pablo Tepoot about his years of success maintaining large groups the frustratingly challenging Moorish Idol, Zanclus cornutus, in the home aquarium. What’s his secret?

Broodstock colonies display the appeal of corals available from sustainably operated Indonesian mariculture farms.

#5 – CORAL Excerpt: The Indo Connection, by Vincent Chalias

After an export ban that lasted a very long twenty months, participants in the country’s coral industry were told in mid-January 2020 that not only would the export of maricultured corals be re-opened under certain provisions, but also that some wild corals would once again be allowed for export. Keep reading…

Eyes of a mantis shrimp, one of the video exploration chapters in Sir David Attenborough’s new interactive coral reef production.

#6 – Video Expedition for Armchair Reef Explorers

Sir David Attenborough takes young and old alike on an interactive journey through the Great Barrier Reef that takes viewers on a virtual dive through the world’s largest coral reef system. Go there now!

Psilotris laurae, aka. the Thin-barred or Laura's Goby, possibly the world's rarest goby in the aquarium trade. Image copyright Barry B. Brown.
Psilotris laurae, aka. the Thin-barred or Laura’s Goby, possibly the world’s rarest goby in the aquarium trade. Image copyright Barry B. Brown.

#7 – World’s Rarest Living Goby: Who can afford it?

In May 2020, a single living specimen of this colorful deepwater goby, reportedly only the third ever found, was collected by the Curasub at Substation Curacao, and it has made its way into the aquarium trade via Dynasty Marine Associates in Marathon, Florida. See more…

A remarkable image depicting roughly 20 captive-bred Purple Tangs (Zebrasoma xanthurum) being prepared for shipment at Bali Aquarich.
A remarkable image depicting roughly 20 captive-bred Purple Tangs (Zebrasoma xanthurum) being prepared for shipment at Bali Aquarich.

#8 – Commercial Production of Captive-Bred Purple Tangs

2020 proved that Bali Aquarich’s successful breeding of the Purple Tang wasn’t a one-off; captive-bred Purple Tang are now being produced in commercial quantities! This marks the second species of Zebrasoma Tang to achieve this remarkable status in the marine aquarium trade. Learn all about it!

The mixing and swirling of green and orange coloration is unique in every individual Nexus Burst Anemone.
The mixing and swirling of green and orange coloration is unique in every individual Nexus Burst Anemone.

#9 – ECC’s Nexus Burst Bubble Tip Anemone

Eye Catching Coral’s (ECC) newest anemone cultivar is a riotous spectacle of color. Furthermore, no two are ever alike, making them truly one-of-a-kind works of biological art, straight out of Mother Nature’s studio. Experience this amazingly variable new anemone now!

Stefan Betzenhauser, feeding his nearly 800 gallon "Nature Aquarium" reef tank.
Stefan Betzenhauser, feeding his nearly 800 gallon “Nature Aquarium” reef tank.

#10 – German Nature Reef Video

Tobias Neyer of the German marine aquarium blog Seafriendlyreef traveled to the home of Stefan Betzenhauser to film and showcase his nearly 4-year old reef aquarium. Watch now…

Franklin, Maine based Sea & Reef Aquaculture has released five new multi-gene designer clownfish varieties since the start of 2020. Clockwise from upper right: Snow Storm, Ice Storm, Longfin Mocha Storm, Longfin Domino, and Longfin Black Storm clownfish.

#11 – A Squall Line of New Longfin & Storm Clownfish

Proving that not even a pandemic will slow down the pace of marine ornamental aquaculture progress, Sea & Reef Aquaculture released several new types of designer clownfish in the first half of 2020. Discover them all!

Stratosphere Zoanthid: A high resolution watermarked version of the printed image, shared so you can see the detail captured by CORAL photographer Michael Vargas. The original image is more than double this size still!
Stratosphere Zoanthid: A high resolution watermarked version of the printed image, shared so you can see the detail captured by CORAL photographer Michael Vargas. The original image is more than double this size still!

#12 – VISIONS Insight: Stratosphere Zoanthid

CORAL Magazine Photographer Michael Vargas shares insights on how he creates his stunning photography. In this installment, the Stratosphere Zoanthid, featured in the January/February 2020 REEF VISIONS column. Brush up on your photography skills with Vargas!

Was your favorite CORAL story from 2020 in our list, or do you think we forgot to highlight one of our best stories? Tell us in the comments!

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About the author

Reef To Rainforest

Reef to Rainforest Media, LLC is the publisher of award-winning magazines and books in the fields of aquarium keeping, aquatics, and marine science. It is the English-language publisher of CORAL Magazine and is based in Shelburne, Vermont, USA.

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