General chat

“Is there any way we could have a thread for the more lightweight stuff like music and general chat?”

Do it here. Please no personal attacks or bickering. Anything abusive, provocative or inflammatory may be deleted.


  1. High Flying Duck

     /  12th December 2018

  2. Gezza

     /  12th December 2018

    Sorry this is a bit shaky. It’s not easy trying to feed her with the right hand, keep from overbalancing and falling in, and video her with my left hand all at the same time. See how gently Elvira Longfin takes food from the feeding stick?

    I’m surprised by this. I’m at the point with this lady eel where I’m not sure if I’ve trained her, or whether she’s trained me. But it certainly didn’t take very long to get to this point in our relationship.

    Granville Shortfin is now well on the way to being able to do this as easily as Elvira too. He has trouble with stability when he reaches up, maybe because he’s smaller, or he might just need more practice. He bites harder though. At the moment, anyway.

    I think I will still eat smoked eel because its already dead and I like the taste if it’s on offer. But I don’t think I could catch an eel and eat it now, if there was no need to do so. They are interesting animals with individual personalities and behaviours, and it would feel too much like murder.

  3. phantom snowflake

     /  12th December 2018

  4. Kitty Catkin

     /  12th December 2018

    I saw a magpie in the city today, damn its eyes. It was just where it wouldn’t be squashed by cars, which was a pity.I was hoping that someone would see it and swerve. Blimey, it’s HOT.

    • Gezza

       /  12th December 2018

      It’s nearly 7.30 pm here; it’s gorgeous out at the stream. Sweety just wangled some extra wheat out of me 3 feet away from where I was leaning on the fence, with Alex scoring some extra on the ground below to stop his incessant whining. It’s been a sunny, warm day. The air is still. Birds are flying all round the stream and its banks, blackbirds, a tui, starlings (a massive rat, the biggest I’ve ever seen ran along the far bank and into the foliage; Bluey better watch out, sitting on those eggs); a solitary fantail is hopping around the branches of the tree next to me and flying out over the stream, displaying its fan and air-dancing. Granville cruised around the bottom of his usual circuit and disappeared somewhere while I was looking at the birds. The stream’s making a pleasant trickling sound and the water is very calm and still-looking. And a cloud of fluttering sparrow wings is enveloping me as sparrows who hoped to get some of Alex’s wheat are now trying to get my attention and get some of their own. Bliss.

    • Gezza

       /  12th December 2018

      And here’s your godpook, at 10.47 am this morning, with his dad, behaving himself, and showing off his flash undies. (It’s ok. They do that ! it’s not rude or anything.)

      • Gezza

         /  12th December 2018

        I was just down in the stream @ 8.30pm. I saw a big eel & thought it was Elvira Longfin, who hasn’t had a feed today. But when I got down there, It was Granville Shortfin again. The water depth and light refraction make the eels look all sizes; until I get quite close up and they move towards the Eel spot. Granville’s quite long, not much shorter than Elvira – but he’s very sleek and slim and would weigh a quarter of her weight, at a guess.

        I started feeding him and we were having a good time with him swimming round, snout out, mouth open, heading for the Feeding Stick when I held it close enuf (2-3 inches – 5-7 cm – above his eyes, and moving back and forth, still light enuf to see him clearly, but not to video.

        When four strapping young 7th former chaps came wading nosily up the stream amidst hoots & hollers from other strapping young 7 former chaps around the neighbourhood. “Heya, guys. What are ya up to? Is this a game?” “Yeah, it’s a treasure hunt. How did you get down here?” “I walked down, from my place, up there”. “I hope you’re not frightening my eels.” “What eels? How big are they?” “Well, two of them are four feet long. Ella and Elvira”

        “There’s one there.” “yep. That’s Granville. He’s an Australasian Shortfin. Be careful not to come too close. He’ll bite you.” “Oo – er. How do we get out of here? “Is that all gorse up there?” “Yep. If you just stick to the shallows you can probably quite easily climb up over there, either side of that bridge. I’ve done that”. “Oh, ok, sounds good, thank you sir”.

        So they did. They were typical of around here. A real mix of ethnic backgrounds, and all good mates. Nice young guys. They gave me a wave as they crossed the bridge and clambered over the hurricane wire fence supposed to stop people using the condemned bridge. Their mates looking for them never found them, so I was happy for them – and so was Granville, cos he got another 20 minutes of food and attention before it got dark just after 9.

      • Kitty Catkin

         /  13th December 2018

        Oh, good, he has his cool white undies on now.

        If you want to chase a domineering mynah from the bird food, lean out and squawk ‘Miaow!!!!’ once or twice. They are stupid enough to believe it, the others, who are being bullied, aren’t,