Tag Archives: pond

Painter Returns

This afternoon I heard Cullen barking with his “I have a snake or something unusual: treeing bark. It was a painted turtle who had left our pond and was trapped against the dog fence. I brought the turtle inside and offered her (I think) a large night crawler. When Eric and Kathryn got home I showed them the turtle – which I believe is the correct size to be our previous Painted Turtle, Painter. She looked healthy and we decided to return her to the pond.

A close up of Painter.
Painter returning to our pond.

The Back Story about Painter.

Last week Barb and Joe found a Eastern Painted Turtle hatch ling – probably only 2-3 days old.   He was tiny and likely destined as a food source.  They asked Eric to raise the turtle until he was a little older and had a better chance at survival.  Eric named the turtle Painter and after a copy of fretful days he/she has started to eat.  Painter ignored the fruit: blueberries and strawberries but took tiny bites of soaked dog food and a bite of an orange.  Yesterday while Kathryn was working home alone she said she could hear the faintest sound of smacking and looked to see Painter eating a mouthful of dog food.

In the picture above Painter is in ‘basking’ mode.  At night Painter hides under the vegetation. May 16th, 2008


Painter, the baby painted turtle, was confined to a large tub in the basement where he happily dug into the mud and hibernated until this past week.  The mud in his tub dried up and he awoke to investigate the problem.  After re-hydrating his ‘pond’ and covering him with a damp cloth Painter dug in somewhat and went back to his snooze.  We will continue to monitor his slumber and plan for his move to warmer floors within the house. February 11th, 2009 |


Our painted turtle, Painter, has quite an appetite and has been visibly growing.  He prefers fish worms to almost all other food and will eat them from a hand if you move slow and dangle the fish worm where he can see it.  A measure of his growth is evident in the wide light gray areas between the scutes on his carapace.

July 1st, 2009

Moving the topsoil from our new parcel

We purchased ~4 acres of land from our neighbor Gary as he was selling his farm to an Amish family, Dennis.  The parcel resolved a long time problem of our septic line, garden, orchard and fence line being on property not identified in the original survey of our house.  The parcel contained a pond and a pile of topsoil piled up when the pond was dug.  Part of my agreement with Gary was that he could use the topsoil for his son’s business.  I also requested that some of the topsoil be used to make our new parcel ‘mow-able’  by covering the rocks and reducing the slope from the road.


When I talked to the operator of the loader, he wasn’t made aware of the agreement.  Like other promises by Gary (removing large maple tree trunks and smoothing out around a drainage pond) this apparently was forgotten.  I think I caught them in time and some dirt has been left remaining, but it will be up to me to make alternative arrangements for getting it spread.

New Minnow Pond

My neighbor put drainage tile in the pasture to the south of our house.  He surrounded the drainage tile with sand.  His purpose was to make the field suitable for crops.  This year he planted corn.

He asked if he could run one section of drainage tile such that it drained into a swale in the far SE corner of our pasture. We agreed he would dig a “minnow” pond such that I could raise bait fish for my other ponds.  Today he completed the minnow pond.  It is difficult to judge from this picture, but the pond is a little over eight feet deep and half the size of a football field – roughly half to 3/4 an acre in size.

Fishing Alternatives

Saturday stayed foggy all day. Kathryn’s brother, Tim, visited us for lunch, games of euchre and a short hike through the woods. Tim brought their new dog, Abby and Abby had a good run with Scout. It had been many years since I played Euchre and it was Eric’s 1st time.

After Tim left at 5pm I cleaned Elderberries which Kathryn made into Elderberry/Apple jam. Kathryn had frozen the elderberries bunches that she had picked and my job was to separate the itsy-bitsy, little, tiny frozen berries from the stems.

Sunday I assembled camping gear in anticipation of a 3 day canoe trip through the head waters of West Sacandaga River. I streamlined and re-organized my emergency kit and 1st aid kit. If you’re looking for a great place to buy everything you need for fishing, click here!

Trevor came to play with Eric in the afternoon; with temperatures in the 80s the boys wanted to go swimming in the pond. They boy’s enjoy the water enough, I’ll consider sport fishing when they grow up as a great bonding activity. Since they love the water, I’ll consider visiting the surf shop.

Once there they saw fish swimming around and tried to spear the fish using cat tails. Needless to say they were unable to spear any fish using the blunt ends of cat tail spears. We arranged great lures for new fisherman.

So the boys tried a 2nd tactic – jumping on top of the fish. Challenging to say the least.

A little later we tried more conventional means of catching fish using traditional fishing supplies – hooks and worms. The boys were trying to catch bass. Trevor caught 5 or 6 medium size bass. Below he gives one a quick smooch before returning it to the pond.

After a fashion Eric gave up on fishing with a bobber and caught 3 bass.

Sunday evening Kathryn froze 16 packages of acorn squash.

Full Moon Weekend

Eric and I were bachelors this past weekend as Kathryn went to Rochester on a multipurpose visit:

  • Lunch with long time friend Debbie
  • Shopping for new clothes
  • Dinner with high school friend Judy
  • Irish-fest with brother Tim and niece Sarah
  • Going away/deployment party for nephew John and wife Danielle
  • Brunch with long time friend Kathy

Eric’s buddy Jack got off the bus with him on Friday after school. Jack’s dad picked him up shortly after 5pm, so the boys only had about 90 minutes to play together – not a lot of time but psychologically it is a good TGIF get-together. After Jack left Eric and I grabbed a quick bit to eat and hopped into the car and drove to Sonne’s to get Eric’s bike which was being repaired for a flat tire and minor tune-up.

Saturday morning was the Eric’s 1st soccer game of the fall season. This year Eric is playing U10. This is a traveling team which will normally play 7v7 with a goalie on a much larger field. The team has 13 players – which is way too many. I concentrated on the roster rotations. The opening game was versus the other HP team. The game ended up as a 3-3 tie. Trevor came home to play with Eric after the soccer game.

Barb and Joe pulled into the driveway right behind us as we got home from the soccer game. After a quick tour of the home remodeling project we all ate lunch on the deck. Barb and Joe took a tour of the yard; checking out the garden, grape vines, blueberry bushes and elderberry plants. I gave them each a taste of Kathryn’s elderberry tonic. Barb took home items loaned out for Billie Jo’s wedding, 4 packages of decafe coffee and a draft copy of The Guide to Winter Camping to review. The boys played in the pool all afternoon.

In the evening Eric, Trevor and I went to Grande’s and sat on the plaza, played pitch and ate pizza.

Sunday afternoon Kathryn returned home and Trevor re-joined us to play with Eric and go bowling at ADK Lanes.

Afterwards I walked down to the pond under the light of a full moon to feed the fish. It was a gorgeous evening.

As the fish food starts to hit the water the tranquility of the water is disturbed by the bass and catfish cruising for food.

The catfish are particularly aggressive scooping up floating fish food along the surface.

Feeding Fish

Our pond is stocked with Large Mouth Bass and Catfish. I feed the fish every other day or two and the catfish have grown quite large (22-24″). They are voracious eaters. As I start to throw fish food onto the pond the swirls begin.

More fish show up and begin swimming along the surface to capture the fish food (Agway’s Rise)

Just beneath the surface is a large catfish with it’s whiskers extending to each side.

Fishing in the Pond

Friday evening Kathryn, Eric and I went fishing in our pond with an intent to catch some catfish and relocate them to the pond below our house. By my estimation there are 18-20 large catfish in our pond and they are overcrowded. I caught a small large mouth bass and a catfish while Eric managed to catch two large catfish.

Saturday morning we had a glitch in our soccer schedule and despite my team being ready at 8:30am, we had no opponent to play.

Stocking Grass Carp

Grass Carp resemble the common carp but its body is more streamlined and it lacks a stiff dorsal spine and barbels. The grass carp has large, grooved pharyngeal {throat} teeth and a long intestine which allow it to effectively shred and digest aquatic plants as its principal food. The grass carp feed on submersed aquatic plants.  A permit is required to keep track of the location and number of grass carp in the environment. Preventing escapement helps protect beneficial aquatic vegetation in our public waters. Although triploid grass carp can’t reproduce, they can live for years, potentially migrate to sensitive areas, and consume a great deal of vegetation.

Today we picked up our 6 Grass Carp (2 for the little pond and 4 for the other) from Hicklings Fish Supply in Edmeston. They traveled in plastic bags with a little water, but extra oxygen.

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