A male goldspotted killifish (Floridichtys carpio) in full breeding colors.
This guy was about an inch and a half long.
Following the blog titled “Silence of the Fish” I received many emails and comments offering condolences that I spent my summer rummaging through piles of rotting fish. Well, sort of. More than a few of you said in so many words that this was my punishment for getting to work in the Everglades, and I that deserved all the nauseating hours as if it were some form of penitence. Perhaps karma is at work here, and just in case, I’m going to clear my record.
While the Day 2 fish are the fun story to tell, there’s another truth I’d be remiss not to mention. Clown gobies, rainwater killifish, flagfish, and sailfin mollies are some of the most beautifully colored and intelligently designed animals I’ve ever worked with. I’m in awe of how intricate and simplistic they are in their form and function. How can the prey base of an ecosystem, the bottom feeders, be so elegant and yet so unfortunate? It just goes to show that a lot of time has been put into building this web of life; a lot of natural selection, and millennia of adaptations.
So, this post will be my homage to the bottom of the totem pole, the unsung heroes of the Everglades.
Diversity is beautiful.