Oct 4, 2004

Darwinian Train Wreck

Okay, so there I was minding my own business, sitting on my motorcycle, watching the swallows play in the morning light while waiting for the stop sign to change. How was I to know it was a slow one?

I keep fish. Fish are safe, fish don't shed, fish don't bark in the middle of the night, fish don't stay up all night yowling for a mate, and if fish die you don't have a half-ton of meat on the hoof to get rid of. Unless you're keeping koi, and I'm not.

I'm keeping Neon Tetras, as well as some Emperor and Lemon Tetras.

Now, in capital "N" Nature, neons and emperors and lemon tetras are all middle feeders. Their mouths are situitated right smack in the middle of their little faces, which gears them to approach food head-on. In the Amazon River tributaries where they live they tend to stay several feet deep or deeper, because for very small fish it's simply SAFER down there. Neons in Nature who decide to come to the surface to feed find that inch-long electric blue and red fish make marvelous (and colourful) snacks for larger fish, small birds, and other opportunity-seeking wildlife. Other fish, like mollies and swordtails, have mouths that mount at the tops of their faces, so they can easily swim just below the surface and eat things without having to turn their entire bodies pointing upwards. Neons do not. Middle-water fish. See?

Well, I have done it. In the space of one month my tetras have decided that when the Great Black Rectangle of The Sky opens, food will be immediately raining down on their little heads, and that if a neon is smart, he or she can race up there and get a gut-full before the rest do, and those neons become fat, sassy, and get all the chicks.

In less than 30 days I have derailed thousands of years of careful natural selection and evolution.


Today's colour: Orange. Yeah, you expected me to say "neon blue" or "neon red," didntja?
Today's scent: wet dog. My mom's dog came up this morning smelling like ick
Today's word: Ick
Today's music: Something by Ennio Morricone
Today's tele: No time for the square-headed girlfriend

No comments: