This evening just before shower and bed time, the fish all seemed pretty settled and ready for rest themselves. As they hung quietly idly flicking a tail now and then, I saw a good opportunity to count them. It was not as easy as I had supposed, but I got to 50 of the mountain minnows before their random movements threw me off. So I can be pretty certain I have somewhere between 50 and 60 of them. I am very grateful to Brenton for giving me them, because even though he has hundreds breeding in a pond, in the pet shops they sell for $3 each. I am pretty excited because some of them are displaying what I think must be mating behaviour, dashing around in unison and flashing their silvery pectoral fins, then stopping side by side and “vibrating”. I hope they are laying eggs – though I have not seen any. I made a plastic mesh shelter tower and placed it in the aquarium so that any hatchlings will have a safe place to go if the weeds are not haven enough. I hope it works. It also makes a good base to anchor the floating bits of weed that are released when yabbies chew them.
There are seven tiny native minnows that I could see. There may be more. They were much harder to spot. They were in two groups, one free-swimming near the top, and one at the bottom, which makes me wonder whether they are actually two species. The bottom swimmers seem a little darker in colour and appear to have rounder heads.
The two long little Galaxiid cockabullies, which I really like, enjoy sitting in the flow of bubbly water from the filter pumps. They also seem to have commandeered one of the vacant yabbie holes.
I counted at least a dozen shrimps so I am hopeful that all fourteen are still alive.
I could not see the dragonfly nymph at all. Either he has gone to ground with prey to chew on, or he was staying out of sight in the weeds or behind the filters.
I have just
wasted spent a whole evening watching them all. I never tire of it.