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The Backyard Science group regularly features the Daily Bucket. Tomatoes not ripening?  Did you pocket a interesting looking pebble?  Extra-pretty moths flitting around the parsley? Please add  your own observations in a comment. Insects, weather, meteorites, climate, birds,  and more are all worthy additions to the Bucket.  Include, as close as is comfortable for you, your location. Your impressions will provide additional viewpoints of the life around us.
A few months ago, I uprooted a couple of cubic yards of invasive pickerel weeds (Pondeteria Cordata), and most of the Arrowhead (Sagittaria latifolia), from my backyard pond.  I planted a couple of rush plants, and left some open water.  Now I am submitting my required progress report.

This picture was taken right after the pickerel was vanquished.  The fish enjoyed the considerable open water area, and frolicked under the waterfall.  They congregate under the lily pads and then dart out.  

As the goldfish mature, some change colors from mostly black to vivid combinations of gold, orange, black and white.  Those are very visible when they loll on the water's surface, and I'm hoping that attracts the herons again. That goes double for the bullfrog, who remains a mottled green.

I haven't see the herons since before I dug out the pickerel.  I am thinking they may be nest tending for awhile.

 Here's another view of the open water.

I got carried away and planted a very large rush plant (Juncus effusus) where there used to be pickerel.  The rush sticks up two feet above the water line.  The rush plant is shaped like a giant chives plant, with dozens of narrow spike-like stems reaching skyward.  The Rush is in the lower left center of this picture.
If only the rush had some chives-like flowers. Instead, small brown bunches of almost-flowers grow on the tips of the green branches, and those rapidly dried out.  That annoys the damselflies, who used to frequent the now- missing tiny purple pickerel flowers. But the damselflies still visit the remaining white Arrowhead flowers, and the lilies too.

The lilies are moving into the open water as fast as they can grow lily pads, but they are producing more blossoms, too. I have ten lilies blossoming at once in that pond, currently.  You can see some of the lilies peeking from behind the Rush, and the extent to which the lily pads have spread into the open water.

My current damselfly count is low, usually about 5, but I am thinking that is seasonal, and they peaked much earlier in the year.  I'll be counting them all next year at various times for comparisons.

The fish find much pleasure by winnowing in between the rush branches.  I can see parts of the plant quiver and shake in the water, as the fish "get busy."

The water irises look better too, with more light and open water. You can see they are browning in the upper right hand corner of the first photo.  They are greening up now.

So the fish, frogs, lilies, and irises are taking advantage of the pond renovation.  The damselflies, not so much,

That's everything in this Water Bucket.  Please share some comments of you own, about your neck of the woods.

I'll be on a 6200 yard walk this morning, but will respond to comments well before lunch.

 

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Originally posted to Backyard Science on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:14 AM PDT.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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