The Straubs: Pioneers of Florida’s Tropical Fish Industry

Dr. Roy Yanong on Pet Life Radio

The United States’ ornamental fish aquaculture industry began to develop in the 1930s and 40s in west central Florida, through the efforts of a number of aquarium pioneers. Since then, the U.S. tropical fish industry, still centered in Florida, has grown from one to over two hundred farms, unified through the Florida Tropical Fish Farms Association.

One of these pioneering families, the Straubs, moved from Long Island, NY to begin fish farming in 1940 on the east coast of Florida, and Walter Straub Tropical Fish Farm still produces and sells fish today. As a youngster, Walter H. Straub battled Florida mosquitoes, water quality problems, and other challenges as he helped his father Walter Sr. produce and sell fish for an-ever changing market. After learning the ropes, Walter and his wife Norma took over the business in 1974, and-- 3 wonderful children and 10 grandchildren later-- he find himself “still working on the farm.” Join us for a journey back to the early aquarium fish farming days, and lessons learned for today, as we travel together in Walter’s time machine.