This blog reports events and interesting tidbits from Rensselaer, Indiana and the surrounding area.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Death and dying

On Monday I had a couple pictures of the seasonal pool east of Weston Cemetery, with a comment that it would soon be dry. It had filled early this spring when the river flooded, and then as the water level dropped, the fish that had gotten into it were trapped. The weekend rain had put a little more water in the pond, but by Tuesday night, it was almost dried up and the big carp were dead.
On Wednesday morning the water was completely gone. I was therefore quite surprised to see live fish in the field. They were not carp, but little catfish. You can see two of them in the picture below.
There were also some tadpoles alive, many of them very small. In the picture below you can see that the heron had checked out the area in the morning, and there is also a faint raccoon footprint. If you stop by in the next few weeks, you will probably be able to see my footprints as well.
I decided to rescue what I could, though I am not sure that rescue is a good idea. I hope those are native catfish and not some exotic alien species that will destroy the local ecosystem. If they are, maybe one of my relatives can come and poison the river. She does things like that--it is her job.

You can see one big frog tadpole at 4:00 in the picture below, and a lot of little tadpoles (plus some dead fish that clung to my hands as I was picking up the little tadpoles). The big fish are catfish. I deposited them in the creek, which, I noticed, had a fairly large number of small dead fish. I wonder if farm or lawn chemicals have gotten into it recently. I also wonder if any of the tadpoles will survive in the creek, and if I may not be upsetting Darwin's survival of the fit by helping out those that nature seems to have declared unfit. (I am so worried about it, worried, worried.)Speaking of death, I noticed dozens of small dead frogs on Sparling Avenue on Tuesday morning. I do not see many frogs near Weston Cemetery--it is mostly toads.
You see a lot of things on the roads when you walk, run, and ride a bike.


reMark said...

Running, especially at my speed, does allow a more extended view of interesting/uninteresting roadviews.

Ed said...

Ah, I miss the old stinky field. I hope you were wearing gloves, I remember it being quite putrid. No worries about dropping exotic species in the Iroquois, it's already one of the most impaired rivers in the Mississippi system (extraordinary levels of atrazine).