There is something funny happening in the world of crucians. Many ponds which used to contain crucians now no longer have them, in others they’re just shadow of their former selves. Indeed when we netted Bircliffe Pond earlier this year we only found one. That’s not to say there aren’t more but we certainly expected to see more than one, hence the decision to restock with 500 new fish in an attempt to establish new stock.
But that isn’t the only problem. For the last two years staff at the Environment Agency’s Fish Farm at Calverton have been unable to source breeding stock, including fish from our own stock pond, either because the fish had either spawned earlier than normal or apparently were not going to spawn at all. And the the situation is not fully understood, even by the experts!
And so this year the Agency have taken some fish from both stock ponds and will endeavour to spawn them artificially in their facilities.
During netting the fish the opportunity was taken to remove some tench to other ponds and replace them in the Old Stock Pond with some tench, given to us by Calverton as a thank you for our help. Pictures of our new tench are shown below, plus a remarkable comparison of the size of some of the crucians taken from the New Stock Pond.
These are the new tench,
and these were the crucians just three and a half years ago,
and this is how big they are today!