Checking on the pond fish

It's the time of year finally when the snow and ice clears from the pond and I get to see how many of the fish survived. The water is certainly not pretty now...


...but the experience of two previous springs tell me that things will change quickly, greening up, teeming with life. First though, the fish...


***


The goldfish were added in early summer of 2012, so last year was the first spring for them. If you remember, I lost one or two fish that first winter, ending up with five in the spring: two orange, two white with orange, and one black.


This past winter was much more brutal than the previous one though, with ice covering the water almost the entire time.

Well, I'm happy to report that both oranges made it, as did both whites!


Some of their offspring made it too, as you can see. And by "some" I mean a few...


More than a few really.



It's actually a lot more than a few. A heck of a lot.


I had a feeling that there were a significant number of young fish in the pond this past summer, but I never got to see more than a dozen or so of them at a time -- too many places to hide.


Now though, each and every one stands out like a beacon as they stay in the warm layer of water at the surface. I counted at least 50, maybe 60, and some additional ones appear to be hanging out in the depths where it is still quite cold I expect so didn't get counted.

Wow.

Now you may have noticed that I didn't mention the large black fish. I have not seen it yet, and suspect that it did not survive the winter.


It's contribution to the next generation is obvious though!

If the bullfrog that I saw in the fall hung around and is planning on making this his home, it sounds like I'm going to need lots of fish. I don't like thinking of them as frog food, but there's no way that this pond can support 60 big goldfish -- not to mention the unknown number that will be added with this year's spawning. So predators are an important part of the equation.

I'm getting ahead of myself again though... let's just enjoy the fish...


...while I can still see them!


(I thought it was hard coming up with names for just five fish!)

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Maywyn Studio  – (March 14, 2014 at 9:06 AM)  

Sharing extra fish with friends can lessen the frog issue.

Steve Lau  – (March 14, 2014 at 9:10 AM)  

Since they tend to eat their own eggs, I think there comes a time when they will tend to reach a population limit, especially if food is limited too. It's definitely a good idea to share with friends, or even sell them on craigslist if they cost a decent amount at the pet stores.

Cat  – (March 14, 2014 at 10:31 AM)  

Ha! So glad to see so many made it through your harsh winter. I was just looking through photos of last March and comparing them to what I've got growing right now in the garden...it's not pretty. This may be a year for some serious changes. I'd become a bit complacent and was pushing my zone. The Myer lemon tree looks particularly ravaged. Maybe some more evergreen shrubs are in order.

Lisa  – (March 14, 2014 at 11:16 PM)  

Got a good look at our fish today too. Lost one fella who may have gotten himself stuck in too shallow waters. Otherwise everyone looks hearty and hale!

Hoover Boo  – (March 16, 2014 at 12:06 AM)  

Yep, goldies do that. Time for my koi to fast for a few weeks so they don't do that. Congrats though on their surviving a rough winter. Pond looks good.

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