June 11, 2008

The Great Egret Caper

I found over the weekend that I had 6 dead fish! My largest .. 16 inchers and my oldest.. 12 years all of them. They were the 6 original tiny fish I bought for 10 cents a piece . They died either from fright, heat or lack of oxygen, I don't really know which.

Then on Tuesday morning I looked out the bathroom window to see this huge Egret staring back at me from inside the pond! He was eating my fish!! That bum!! He was huge too. He was about 4 feet tall.. maybe 107 cm? My pond is 3 1/2 feet deep at the shallow end and he was almost looking me in the face, well he was tall anyway, you get the idea

I believe the 6 originals died of fright. 12 years is nothing since ornamental fish like that can live over 100 years.

Some people have Koi that are over 200 years old.

Anyway, whatever happened, they are gone and I will miss their gorgeous veil-like fins trailing through the water behind them and having them swim up to me to get their dinner. Rotten Egret!!

On a nicer note, the red-orange Scotch Broom has blossomed and I got a nice photo of it.
I finally had to cut back the other ones as they fell into the pond with the weight of their blossoms, so that was done today.

I will have to place a net over the pond if I can find one large enough and prevent Mr.Egret from enjoying his Poisson de jour at Cafe L'Eau..


  1. wow huge bird, you need anti egret defense

  2. He even pulled the filter system apart with his big fat footsies!!

  3. Anonymous14 June, 2008

    awwwww....nature is so cruel sometimes - but it must be nice to see such a beautiful bird so close up!

    Call your county Agricultural Extension Service - they may have humane solutions to repel egrets.


    not sure if I found you the right county or not.

  4. you did!
    And I will. For now a net is up over the pond. Hopefully he will go work for his dinner rather than stabbing my fish in a corral really.
    Talk about shooting fish in a barrel!

  5. Good. I'm glad you're not resorting to a BB gun or feeding the bird Alka Seltzer).

    The bird can't tell the difference between ornamental or "wild" fish in a lake. Either that or he's just plain lazy.

    But you live near the water, so he should feed there and not your pond.

    I'm sorry your fish died.

    The only times I've ever seen fish actually dying was last summer when a small species of fish species of fish were dying in Lake Erie.

    But they didn't just float to the surface after they died; before they died they swam around in little circles with their heads just barely above the water, mouths gapping open for air.

    They looked terrified.

    One of the saddest things I've ever seen. I think the DEC said they were suffering from some sort of internal bleeding but why they came to the surface frantically gasping for air nobody knows.

  6. If they gasp by the surface it means there is no oxygen in the water for them. That means the lake is dying.
    The lake needs a good cleaning.. fresh plants to oxygenate the water and the water needs cleaning.
    They need to put tons of freshwater clams and oysters in to filter the water. They filter thousands of times their own little body size every day!
    When Chesapeake bay put back clams the bay thrived!
    New plants on the bottom will help build oxygen and plants on the top keep the algae down by providing shade.


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