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NFC: First Natives

Well, with the departure of the Mid-western heat wave, my tank's temp has
finally dropped to a pleasant 76 degrees F.
As some of you already know, the temp in my tank rose to 90 degrees the day
after I set it up, and had remained there (+/- a few) for a couple of

I decided today to visit my favorite fishin' pond, and brought a bucket to
transport a couple of fish back for introduction to my tank. The heat wave
must have been devastating to the fish in the area as well as those
unfortunate souls who succumbed to its heat. The pond has always been loaded
with plants (which often made me curse when fishing) and fish, which were
visibly abundant and eager to strike at just about anything you could toss
It was not uncommon to catch 5-6" bluegill on 3" floating rappalas!

What I discovered today looked like a toxic waste dump. The only thing green
left in the pond was an old plastic trash bag. The water was murky, brown
and coated with nasty brown scum of varying hues and textures. What few
clumps of plants remain are brown and rotten. I could see none of the 
hordes of sunnies, bass and crappie that used to make themselves easily
visible. Even the ducks and geese were gone.

After a few hours of fishing, I ended up catching only 3 fish, which is a
very pathetic harvest for this site. I caught 2 LM bass (3" and 10") and one
bluegill (about 6").
I baited the hook with a green and yellow weed-flower bud to catch the
bluegill. Before I left, I returned the the larger bass to the pond.

The bass took to the aquarium almost immediately, and the bluegill stressed
out hard. It's been about 6 hours since they were introduced to their new
home, and both are now busy exploring it. The bluegill seems most perplexed
by the suction cup thermometer hanging in the side corner. I can't tell you
what a joy it is to finally have fish after 7 year of not being able to do
so. I probably won't be this excited when I finally have kids!

I am concerned about the pond. How well do they normally bounce back after
such a devastation, and how long do you think it may took for it to

Tony Gustafson

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