Hellweg, Mike

Mike has been keeping fish all of his life and breeding fish since he was 9 years old.  Over the past 40 years he has specialized in miniature fishes, working with fishes that most other hobbyists overlook.  He has bred most of the known Gourami species, over half of the known Betta species, several species of loaches, catfish from six different families, puffers, native fish, killies, over 120 species of livebearers from five different families, and many other miniature fishes giving him a BAP total of well over 400 species from 32 families of fish (only about 70 of which are cichlids!).  He credits his success to keeping live plants in almost every tank and culturing and feeding an assortment of live foods daily to both his breeding stock and for growing the fry of these diverse fish.  He currently maintains about 3000 gallons divided into about 100 tanks from 5 – 135 gallons. 

Mike has been active in the organized hobby for nearly 30 years, and has given over 250 talks to groups all over North America in the past 25 years.   He has served on the boards of several national organizations and he serves his local club as a councilor and is their auction and HAP chairman.  Mike is a former AFI magazine columnist and has had well over 200 articles published in hobby magazines around the world, and has had two books on live foods published by TFH Publications.


  • Minature Cyprinids
  • Working with Live-bearing Halfbeaks
  • The Great Tetra Renaissance
  • The Joy of Goldfish
  • Breeding Miniature Oddballs
  • Culturing Live Foods
Speaker Type: 
Speaker Topics: 
Characins and other characiformes
DIY (Do It Yourself)
Other Fish Species

Past Speaking Events

Event Name Date
American Livebearer Association 2017 Convention Thursday, May 4, 2017 - 09:00 to Sunday, May 7, 2017 - 18:30
ACLC 40th Anniversary Saturday, September 15, 2012 - 09:00 to Sunday, September 16, 2012 - 18:30
NEC 2008 Convention - "The Pirates of the NEC" Friday, April 11, 2008 - 09:00 to Sunday, April 13, 2008 - 18:30
NEC 2011 Convention - "100 Years of the Advances of the Hobby" Friday, March 25, 2011 - 09:00 to Sunday, March 27, 2011 - 18:00
NEC 2015 Convention - "Ruby Celebration, 40th Anniversary of the NEC Convention" Friday, March 20, 2015 - 09:00 to Sunday, March 22, 2015 - 18:00