Saturday, December 29, 2007
Do Not Ask, For Whom The Mullet Jumps ... It Jumps For Thee
If you squint, tilt your head, and hold your mouth just right ... you might be able to make out the mullet leaping for joy in the picture above.
I don't know why mullet are so joyful since every marine predator from me on down tries to eat them. It starts at birth and never ends until ... it ends for the mullet.
They must be aware of this since most of their life is spent dashing from predators.
Actually, that may be the reason for their joy.
Perhaps the sheer joy of being alive for that second results in a happy leap.
I am not a fish whisperer so this is all conjecture of course.
But if it's true, most of us could take a lesson from the mullet.
I think it's quite possible that I had the huge Lower Suwannee National Wildlife Refuge to myself yesterday afternoon. It's out of the way enough that most people don't know it exists. It's also far off the beaten path so if you go there, you meant to go there ... not one you stumble across on the way to Dismal World in Orlando.
The tidal creek above is Barnett Creek. This is a view upstream towards terra firma. The tide was almost high, but still gushing in when I was there.
Out in this marsh, the slightest upward change in elevation results in colonization by woody plants and especially cabbage palms. The forest is a classically beautiful original Florida mixed hammock, dense with mature palms.
I tromped around in it a little and will share some photos of the palm forest in another post.
The ride out to the marsh is through pine flatwoods and cypress swamps. It wasn't especially birdy, but I did see wood ducks and wood storks in the woods.
Then there was this USFWS sign ... in a tidal creek.