Monday, January 30, 2006

Cats Who Love To Swim

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Back in October, I posted about my 100 missing catfish. I'm happy to report that a signifigant number of them survived and have grown nicely. A walk to the pond at mid-day reveals squads of them cruising around and through the branches of a sunken willow.

They are calmer and shyer than the aggressive bluegills who hit the surface with a spray and a splash. I usually toss some bread bits with the official catfish chow feed pellets just to get things going. The bread draws rapid strikes from the bluegills and the feeding sounds alert the cats which begin to cruise through the feeding area.

You can see the catfish become more stimulated by the bream popping and splashing. They begin to swim more rapidly and make tight turns instead of leaving the area. Finally, the cats rise in the water column and begin feeding with gentle swirls. Swimming along at the surface, mouth open, hoovering in food pellets is another method that some have adopted.

We are toying with the idea of having the kids raise, catch, and sell these as an FFA "supervised agricultural experience". In the FFA, kids are encouraged to start small ag related businesses to gain experience. Our "sittin' on the dock thinking" business plan goes something like this.

The kids take orders from the school staff early in the week for a Friday fish delivery. The county courthouse is across the street and there's even more customers there. On Friday the kids would deliver fresh iced filets or whole gutted fish to their customers.

It could work.

There's only one way to find out...


oa said...

Probably have to sell them on the hoof to avoid all those pesky regulations re: food prep, et al. Especially if your chosen venue, so to speak, is in front of the county courthouse!

Rurality said...

We used to have so many lovely catfish... even one pond full of white ones. The otters ate almost every last one of them! :(

Rexroth's Daughter said...

What do the kids think? Are they up for a little business enterprise?

threecollie said...

I know one customer you would have if you could deliver to upstate NY

roger said...

mmmmmm catfish. RD asked my question.

so, have you eaten any of those catfish?

Floridacracker said...

You are right...I guess the sidewalk kid-operated lemonade stand is in danger too.

We had an otter visit once, years ago. It ravaged the turtle population, I had fewer fish at the time.

I think they are as long as I do all the work :)

Those firstclass fish filets really gum up the post office machinery.

None of this crop, but we have in the past. I once grew Tilapia and we ate a bunch of those.

Anonymous said...

them fish are getting big about catchen size tmart

Floridacracker said...

Dont you steal any of my fish.

thingfish23 said...

Uh - Floridacracker, those plans sound delightful, but get on it quick before the Federal Gubmint steps in. I've been hearing rumblings about a deadly "catfish fever", and you've got some prime vectors in your pond there.

Floridacracker said...

That's "catscratch fever" not catfish fever. I spoke with Dr. T. Nugent about it...

Hick said...

I like your picture. Those fish are bee-utiful...and tasty too.