|Winter Rainbow: The two larger ones are 17 inch fish.|
Winter has now locked the pond in under 28 inches of ice. It's nearing the end of January, but so far the fish are thriving. I don't expect them to survive the winter ... but of course I'm hoping to be wrong.
There isn't a lot of plant growth in the pond, and so far this year there has been little snow, and that which has fallen keeps being blown off the pond. This allows ample light through and just may prevent too many plants from dying off. If most of the plants survive, there may be enough oxygen for the fish to last until spring melt ... especially since living plants won't be robbing oxygen like decaying ones would.
Friends and I have caught about 25 trout so far. They are a bit finicky to catch, being that they are stuffed with water beetles and of course a bit lethargic in the cold water. But, once on the line they fight like mad, indicating that oxygen levels are still fine. The amazing part is their size. We are catching females which are 16 inches in length and chunky. It's amazing that the 4 inch fish I stocked last spring have grown so much.