Don’t Eat The Fish

I was really struggling this evening with a clever post title, something akin to “Feed The Fish” or “Did You Remember To Feed The Fish”, but I settled on the above when I realized the source of our fish stress is related to an interloping frog who, until recently, was thought to have eaten at least 3 of our fish.

Let me back up. We got fish last weekend. Yay!

11 for the price of 10 standard orangish goldfish. $0.30 per fish as opposed to $10-$14 per Koi, depending on varietal.

Our little “troubling” – which is what you call a group of goldfish – has/had the troubling misfortune of sharing their space, our backyard pond/waterfall/water feature with a very loud Bullfrog. Take a listen, you’ll know one when you’ve got one.

This “Miller’s dozen” as I’m calling our “troubling” of 11 goldfish was thought to have dwindled to only 5 or 6 by as soon as the first morning after their purchase. We thought they’d been picked off by hungry birds our resident frog or some other scavenger.

Turns out 600 gallons of water and a smattering of lilies is more than enough cover for a few small fish. Toss in an overlapping section of black-trashbag-style liner and you’ve got the perfect environment for sneaky, people-wary fish.

So this evening we actually counted all 11 of the little buggers, even the two which are almost midnight black. They were out in the late evening traveling as a school about their watery enclosure. A few even showed signs of their larger brethren’s temperament by swimming up close to the “human” side of the pond to see if we’d feed them.

Naturally (and happily) we obliged them. We even had to rescue 2 of them from getting trapped in the plastic pots of newly-installed water flowers. They were scared but lingered by my hands as if thanking me and asking for more dinner simultaneously.

I couldn’t be happier with our little (in both physical size and fiscal investment) experiment. Here’s hoping they keep thriving.

For those of you curious for more details, and who wouldn’t want to be mesmerized by a suburban couple’s tentative steps into pond management vis-a-vis a glorified desktop bowl approach to fishery, check my Flickr for forthcoming pictures.

And I solemnly promise not to eat these fish should they reach their ultimate, purported length and girth. ;-)

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