Below are brief biographies and pictures of some of our regular contributors.


  •  John Clipperton, Editor

John Clipperton
John Clipperton, UM Editor

Our Editor, and an award-winning photographer and lifelong aquarist, John has worked with numerous top marine retailers, publishers and manufacturers on a freelance basis. He has also collaborated on a range of projects with senior experts in the field, and supported organisations such as zoos, public aquaria, conservation initiatives and educational establishments.

Acknowledged as a ‘World Class’ aquarium photography expert, his images have featured in, and on the covers of, an extensive range of publications in recent years and he has written dozens of articles covering a wide variety of subjects. With extensive knowledge and an eye for naturalistic aquascaping, his aquaria have won critical acclaim in the reef-keeping community and this included a ‘UK Tank of the Year’ award in 2006. He lives with his wife and two small children near Chester, UK. He also maintains a UK reefkeeping blog and image galleries at: www.digital-reefs.com


  • Richard Smith

Regular Contributor, Richard Smith
Richard Smith

Richard Smith completed his PhD on the biology and conservation of pygmy seahorses. He has been diving since 1996 and has travelled the world photographing and studying the ocean realm. More of Richard’s images can be viewed at www.OceanRealmImages.com


  • Alan Adler

Alan Adler
Alan Adler

Alan Adler has been an avid Marine fish hobbyist for over 5 years, arriving there from a lifelong love of the ocean and via tropical fish-keeping in the 80s and 90s and scuba diving in the 00’s! In fact it was a move from Cornwall to the Midlands with work that drove him to recreate a small piece of ocean in his home. Firstly with a reef tank and then a further tank for pipefish and sea horses. He discovered jellyfish when he acquired one of the first Cubic Pulse 80s launched into the UK several years ago. This led to an all-consuming interest in jellyfish.
In fact jellyfish are now Alan’s area of expertise and he breeds and stocks an ever increasing variety with currently large colonies of moons, flames, blubbers, spotted lagoons and amuska with the intention of getting to over a dozen species by the end of this year. Like most enthusiasts he is keen to share his passion with others and through Glass Ocean supplies all things jellyfish, tanks, jellyfish, food and accessories check out glass-ocean.co.uk to see for yourself.


  • James Fatherree

James Fatherree
James Fatherree

James Fatherree is a professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Hillsborough Community College in Tampa, Florida, and has been a reef aquarist and diver for over twenty years. He also worked for an aquarium livestock collector and wholesaler, managed a large retail aquarium shop, and operated his own aquarium installation and maintenance business in the past. James has also been a regular contributor to several aquarium magazines for over fifteen years and has authored six marine aquarium books, including Giant Clams in the Sea and the Aquarium. He regularly speaks at aquarium club meetings and conferences, as well.


  • Alex Arlett-Johnson
Alex Arlett-Johnson
Alex Arlett-Johnson

Originally from Zimbabwe, Alex has kept fish since she could first pour a jug of water into a tank. Since coming to the UK she has been able to fulfil a life-long dream of having a marine tank. She doesn’t do ‘fussy corals’ as she says she tends to over feed her tank, and would rather concentrate on fish. She is actively involved in promoting captive breeding in the UK and has a couple of pairs who regularly spawn for her, including mandarins and dottybacks.


  • Bob Fenner

Bob Fenner
Bob Fenner

The diversity of life has always fascinated me; but the systematics of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians was blown away by the expansiveness and degree of unknown of the fishes. Few people had “companion animals” overseas, but many friends had bowls and aquariums with goldfish, guppies and other tropicals.
I was born in Rhode Island, the smallest State of the U.S. but grew up in the orient as my father was career military. We had very few jobs “on base” for the “dependents” but I was fortunate to secure employment at a fish store that was associated with a restaurant in downtown Sasebo. Other vainglorious work overseas includes two years working for a Betta culture business, collecting and processing marines in Manila. Back to the U.S. in the late sixties I stuck to the trade as a retail clerk, a livestock wholesale worker (for Pratt’s in San Diego), and eventually formed an aquarium service business with a school friend. This business cycled larger and smaller, and supported me all through college and beyond. It eventually became an employee-owned corporation with aquarist retail outlets, fabrication (principally large acrylic systems), water feature construction, manufacturing and distribution divisions. Subsequent to the tax law changes, water-shortage “scare”, and general decline in the California and U.S. economy in the late eighties these businesses were sold and liquidated. I worked for three years as a consultant and buyer for the mass-merchandiser PetCo in their bid to upgrade their stores, incorporating livestock.
Is there a difference between what you do for money and for a living? Not me. Nowadays I write articles and books for the diving/underwater natural history and ornamental aquatics interests, and manage my rentals and securities. I browse the electronic bulletin boards to “chat” with others daily, and often travel, to go “hashing” (sort of running), writing and photographing with friends around the world.
Have been an avid hobbyist since first memories. Active in the local SDTFS from the sixties; helped in development of all three goldfish/koi clubs in San Diego. At times more active in scientific (AVMA, IAAAM, ASIH) and industry professional/business associations.
I have many wonderful friends in the hobby, trade and science of aquatics, and dearly enjoy my involvement; it is my life’s work and passion. A/The central thread to everything I have attempted in writing, presentation or action in the interest has been/is “to enhance peoples’ love of their own lives through an appreciation of the living world”. I see the hobby/business evolving, much like and approaching Western Europe, with a real interest in biotopes, the underlying science, understanding the technologies employed… This is an era of consumer awareness; there are fewer aquarists, but more conscientious ones that are becoming more aware and demanding value. I look forward to the availability of many more species of tank-raised marines, real aquatic plants, and ready, inexpensive access to useful information and graphics.


  • Tristan Lougher

Tristan Lougher
Tristan Lougher

Tristan Lougher has an Honours Degree in Zoology and has worked in the aquatic industry since graduating from Manchester University in 1992. He has written two books on selecting fish and invertebrates for the marine aquarium and contributed to two more saltwater aquarium themed publications. He is a regular contributor to magazines, both in the UK and USA, and is an enthusiastic SCUBA diver who tries to dive and snorkel at every opportunity both here and abroad. Tristan currently works for Cheshire Aquatics based just outside Northwich in, you’ve guessed it, Cheshire.


  • Adam Mortimer

Photograph of Adam Mortimer
Adam Mortimer

I live in Norfolk with my family and beloved golden retriever Hollie. I have kept fish for nearly 20 years and started with marines around 10 years ago. Before I became ill I ran an LFS but don’t think that’s where my future lies. I’m very interested in conservation and ‘giving back’ to the reef and have helped with a project to rebuild them.


  • Kenneth Wingerter

Kenneth Wingerter
Kenneth Wingerter

Kenneth Wingerter contentedly resides in Colorado where he works as a freelance nature and aquarium science writer. He studied in the Pacific Northwest, where he obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology at the University of Oregon as well as a certificate of completion in the Oregon Coast Community College Aquarium Science Program. His diverse interests in aquatic biology have led to projects ranging from tropical freshwater paludaria to temperate marine aquaria, and work ranging from wholesale aquarium fish sales to laboratory aquaculture.