We are in the 16th year of our spring pond ritual.
As soon as the ice begins to melt, I start looking out of the second story windows to try to catch any flash of orange beneath the melting ice. Usually, I end up jubilantly shouting “We have survivors!”. For the last 15 springs, we have had them. Sometimes many, other springs few but always some.
This year I watched, and I watched. One time I thought I saw a little flash of orange, but it was gone so fast I couldn’t be sure.
I didn’t feel confident enough to proclaim survivors. It was a strange winter; the pond wasn’t iced over the entire time leaving it open to predators and disease.
Dirty Pond Dave is draining and cleaning the pond today. I took up my second-floor post, and as the water level went down and the winter debris was cleared, I once again saw that little orange flash.
We have a survivor.
One hearty little fish out of hundreds that were born in that pond last year.
We managed to net him, put him in a tote container, and I brought the hidey-hole log from the fish tank so he would have a place to hide. He immediately darted in which is why you can’t see him. ( Imagine an orange comet 3 inches long with one white spot on his head)
If he survives the move, I’ll keep him quarantined for a few days and slowly add more tank water to his mixture. Then if he appears healthy, he can join Fancy Nancy, Aldo, Herman, Connie Comet and her sister Christine, Big Head, Flash, Molly, Milly, Alice and Bob.
What? Names? Yes, they do have names. There are many good reasons not to name a fish ( like belly up floating death), but I always do.
I think I’ll call this one Tiger after the song by Survivor. ( Everyone sing! Rising up, dah dah dah dah…..and Eye of the Tiger).
Unless he croaks … in which case his name will be Flush.
( If you’d like to read the other posts about reasons not to name a fish you can find them in order at the following links: post one, post two and three and finally the epilogue here )