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NFC: Mystery shrimp (fwd)

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J. L. Wiegert
 Dubotchugh yIpummoH.                      bI'IQchugh Yivang!
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---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 1999 23:32:34 -0700
From: Tony <z966349 at niu_edu>
Reply-To: Agustafs at niu_edu
To: NFC <nfc at actwin_com>
Subject: Mystery shrimp

I'm hoping somebody here can answer this question which has plagued me
for years. But first, the story...

There is a small freshwater pond that lies between some railroad tracks
and a (then a farm field) new neighborhood near my parents' house in
Illinois. During dry summers the pond normally dries up into a big patch
of deeply cracked mud, but from fall to spring it is filled with water,
and makes for a great skating rink in the winter. 

About ten winters ago I was playing on the frozen surface with my little
brother when both my feet broke through the ice. It wasn't deep, only
about 12" or so, and when I pulled my feet out I noticed a school of
light tan "somethings" swimming past the hole I made. I immediately
returned home and grabbed a coffee can and the long-handled aquarium net
I kept below my saltwater tank, changed my foot-wear, and headed back to
the pond. I figured my chances to catch anything through that hole with
a net about 4" in diameter were worse than futile, but I had to give it
a shot.

What I ended up catching, besides a cold, after laying on the ice for
half an hour, was what looked to be about 5 or 6 giant brine shrimp!
They were a very light tan in color and averaged at least an inch in
length. After "oohing" at their size, and wondering how they could
survive in ice-cold temps, my brother and I dutifully fed them to my
sharp-nosed puffer.

I've never been back to that pond since then (I ended up in the Marines
soon after). But now and again I've asked those whom I've suspected
might know if they knew anything about them. Nobody to date has had an
answer. I guess I'm just looking for the name of the species and any
other info on them.