Thursday, September 29, 2005

Feeding the fish

Several years ago we stocked the pond with grass carp (white amur). Grass carp are a member of the minnow family. They feed on submerged vegetation and were imported from China to help control overgrowth in lakes. They need flowing water to spawn so in standing water an adult may reach 50 pounds.

This is the second time we have stocked them in the pond. We feel certain the first group washed out the overflow tube during a particularly wet spring. Dan was
feeding the fish Tuesday evening when he spotted several of the latest stocking. So, tonight around dusk we decided to check it out. The fish are drawn to the sound of his ATV. After tossing out the fish food, we first saw what was probably perch. Then something bigger had a piece of cat tail and was swimming around with it. I couldn't get a picture because it kept back in the weeds. Dan thought it might be the resident beaver rather than a carp. Something with more size then began feeding on the pellets. Was it a carp--couldn't tell. Will have to keep trying.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Update on Sunflower Mystery

Last week I posted a bad picture of a sunflower with a mystery item behind it. I have tried to find that particular sunflower to no avail. Our son suggested the item belongs to an escaped convict who now lives in our barn. I don't know why he thinks someone could be in our barn and we wouldn't know it. Well, maybe it could use a little cleanout.

Driving a set route every day makes it hard to remember exact locations. Almost daily I tell Dan about something I've seen, but can't remember where. It's hard to explain--commuters would understand.

Anyway, I will keep looking.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Memo to new parents and grandparents

RE: Thomas the Train

There is a new craze among the toddlers and preschoolers. Thomas the Train. There are many items available as such as cars, tracks, cities, clothes, backpacks, etc. Any of these items would be a winner under the Christmas tree.

Actually, we attended a Thomas the Train day in Denver with Trent and Carly Kay and their parents. The kids and their parents got to ride on the train as there were six passenger cars behind Thomas. They had lots of things for the kids to do, including a petting zoo. We bought everyone a train whistle.

The Denver Train Museum would be an interesting stop even without Thomas. There is a huge miniature train display, all kinds of locomotives and train history.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Monarch Ultralight Trike

An ultralight trike named Papalotzin, which means "royal butterfly" in the Nowati language once spoken by the Aztecs, has landed in Lawrence. Its pilot, Vico Gutierrez, has been flying with the monarch butterfly migration. He said in a newspaper interview he saw two monarchs at 3500 feet in his morning flight from Odessa, Missouri to Lawrence. The ultralight and its crew started with the monarchs in Ontario, Canada and will end in the winter nesting location in Mexico.

The plane and crew were meeting with Chip at the Monarch Watch headquarters in Lawrence this morning. Dan was able to take a few pictures and visit with the pilot. He found the trike has a 32 foot wingspan, which is about the same as ours, but the depth is much less. This enables it to fly at speeds up to 65 mph. The highest we have been in our ultralight is around 1,000 feet and we fly around 35 mph. It has a Rotax engine, as ours, but much more powerful. Dan said this trike is a sleek machine.