Don’t be coy………

There are some pretty big fish here in the marina, and I have just seen one of the biggest carp ever.
It was basking in the sunshine with its dorsal fin just above the water, and must have measured all of two feet long, weighing in at a good four to six pounds.
carpSlowly (and hopefully) I got down on my belly on the pontoon and slipped my arm over the side. He was so close, I could almost touch him, but he gently sank beneath the surface out of sight into the muddy depths below.

This isn’t the first big guy we’ve seen here (‘stick fish’ and ‘lily pad fish’ lurking in the shadows don’t count), but it reminds me of my home town and two particular tourist attractions we were taken to as kids.
I have checked their websites and there are few photos of the koi carp I remember seeing there as a child. Who knows, some of these magnificent fish may even still be alive:

source WIKI

There are reports of kois that have achieved ages of 100–200 years. One famous scarlet koi, named “Hanako,” was owned by several individuals, the last of whom was Dr. Komei Koshihara. In July 1974, a study of the growth rings of one of the koi’s scales reported that Hanako was 225 years old. The greatest authoritatively accepted age for the species is little more than 50 years.
koi wikiThis picture, also taken from WIKI, shows 6 varieties of Koi, plus a goldfish (left of the tail fin on the white fish top right)

In later life and my days of fostering, I took the family to see the gardens and fish from my childhood.
We picked up my Mum for the day so there were 3 adults and 3 boys squashed into my Datsun violet 140J car.
Admittance fees were expensive, but we trooped in and visited the fabulous gardens within. The boys finally believed that the fish were as big as I’d told them.
These days, this venue is very popular for weddings and special celebrations as each of the five themed gardens are completely shielded from one another.
They are (currently as per their website): The Italian Garden, the Wooded Valley, the Rock and Water Garden, the Heather Garden and the Japanese Garden.

Mum had prepared a picnic for us which we ended up eating in the car as it started to rain. We all got soaked, but it didn’t matter. Everyone was enjoying themselves and it was nice to see the boys taking an interest in something different.
(Years later, Hubby and I took Mum here to see the sika deer.)

From there, we went on to The Quay and Oceanarium which hadn’t been open very long, so there was a variety of animal life, not all water based.
After I’d been scared to death by a tarantula attacking the glass of its habitat as I walked past, the boys had their picture taken with Monty.
So did I, but my Mum refused to join me as she squirmed, shivered and shook on the other side of the room.
I was fascinated by Monty.
He was beautiful, smooth and warm to the touch, and I was quite comfortable when he draped himself across my shoulders and rested his head in my hand.

Maybe I should tell you that Monty was a 20 foot python.
python

About pensitivity101

I am a retired number cruncher with a vivid imagination and wacky sense of humour which extends to short stories and poetry. I love to cook and am a bit of a dog whisperer as I get on better with them than people sometimes! We have recently lost our beloved dog Maggie who adopted us as a 7 week old pup in March 2005. We decided to have a photo put on canvas as we had for her predecessor Barney, and now have three pictures of our fur babies on the wall as we found a snapshot of my GSD so had hers done too. From 2014 to 2017 'Home' was a 41 foot narrow boat where we made strong friendships both on and off the water. We were close to nature enjoying swan and duck families for neighbours, and it was a fascinating chapter in our lives. We now reside in a small bungalow on the Lincolnshire coast where we have forged new friendships and interests.
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6 Responses to Don’t be coy………

  1. 225 years old?? Holy cow, their genetics must be a fascinating study! I had no idea. And truthfully, I’ve had trouble keeping mine alive for more than a few months–but that was because of a neighbor’s crafty hungry cat, who apparently liked to swim.
    It certainly sounds like a terrific day out.
    And isn’t there a way to tickle fish into submission? Or is this an apocryphal story? I’ve heard of people submerging their hands under water and tickling the belly of salmon as a way to hand catch them. Boy would I like that talent.

    • My sister lost one of her large Kois to a passing opportunist heron, and didn’t know about it until a neighbour found one on his lawn and asked if it was indeed hers. She decided to net her pond after that.
      I didn’t realise they could live that long either. It’s amazing isn’t it, though I think this record breaker was in its native Japan.
      We did have a wonderful day out all those years ago though. I’ll remind Mum about it in my next letter which should make her smile.
      I’ve heard the same thing about fish tickling. I think it works along the lines of hypnosis (tummy and back rubs work on the dog and Hubby to make them relax!!). Don’t think the brute here will let me get that close to try though, but I would like to touch it.

  2. Koi are amazing. If (for some reason) you ever find yourself in Omaha here in the States, they have an amazing koi exhibit at their zoo – there are thousands of them, and you feed them off of a bridge. They nearly jump out of the water attempting to get the food.

    I wonder if you could start feeding the carp there and have something similar (if not so pretty).

    • Ha… the fish jump out of the water to escape the pike here. So far we have just seen the two big brutes, but there are bound to be more. We have a variety of ducks come calling though and they look longingly at the kitchen window in the hope for something. I think they’ve grown rather partial to rice (washing up water goes straight into the marina as will food particles from saucepans).

      • The ducks at the duck pond I visited as a kid eventually got so fed up with the plain food (like bread) that they wouldn’t eat anything but chips and salty goods. I am guessing it wasn’t good for them, but they knew what they liked!

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