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Mystery of the Missing Fish
by Brian Brooker - 09:41 on 28 November 2009
We have a garden pond, not terribly big but certainly big enough. It measures about 15 feet by around 10 with a depth of some 4ft in the middle. It has a waterfall at one end and over the four years that it's been there we have enjoyed listening to the sound of the falling water and watching the fish gently swimming among the plants and greenery.
Now it's true that we have had to put some fine fishing wire around the perimeter to deter the local heron but that has worked well and the fish continued to grow, some of them being ghost carp were around 10 inches in length and no doubt felt assured of a protected well fed life ahead of them but then one day disaster struck!!
I say one day but it was actually over a period of three days that some 60 fish of varying size disappeared from the pond. Well, traces were left behind. We found the tail end of two very large fish still in the water and plenty of fish scales on the sides of the pond where they had been eaten.
Does anyone know what animal may have done this dastardly act! It seems to me that it may have been either an otter or a mink but I have no certainty. Has anyone else suffered this problem?
We set a humane otter trap baited with sardines curtesy of our gardner in the hope of being able to move him some distance away from the surounding area but to no avail.
We have not had a return visit since and we have now fenced in the gap that he got through, otters are not very good at climbing unlike mink and a mink would not be able to carry a 24 inch plus Koi the distance he had to eat it so we are pretty convinced that the culprit was indeed an otter.
Kevin and Teresa Pell -The Old Bakery, Caston
(I'm open minded enough to publish your humourous note - pity you weren't brave enough to give your name! Ed.)
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