|Olympic mudminnows in their habitat|
Last week, staff from our office and the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife took a group of Olympia High School students out to the Green Cove Olympic mudminnow site. There the students learned mudminnow basics (including history, policy, and anatomy), entomology/invertebrates, and a little bit about mudminnow diet analysis. Then they pulled minnow traps and did some sampling in the wetland. At the end of the day, the students were asked by their teacher to take a few moments to write a poem or draw a piece of art that related to what they learned that day. Here’s what they wrote:
|Olympic mudminnow - male|
The majestic unturned land.
It lies in the midst of a world of sand.
The glass turns, but the minnows stay.
They would fray.
~ Kevin Kalb
What I Learned
In the beginning I didn’t know much
But then I began to touch.
I touched the minnow in the bucket
And slowly I began to check it.
They only live on Washington’s coast
If they don’t then they are toast.
Thank you teachers for teaching me much
So I can tell my friends and such.
~ Calla Chen
|Olympic mudminnow - female|
Although the water cradles the mosses and brush
Many minnows lie.
In the water I love to go
Just like this mudminnow.
So fast so swift but always in danger
I’ll protect this fish forever in the manger.
~ Mike Schulte
Listen listen do you hear
The free and wild minnows tear.
Is there hope is there life for these free and wild minnows to fight?
Listen again I say to you
Help these minnows so it will free you too.
~ Benjamin Boggs
I saw a fish
Smaller than a knife
And now I see
The meaning of life
Minnow minnow in the pond.
How I see a leafy frond.
Over there across the water.
My oh my it’s getting hotter
Minnow minnow in the pond
You kinda look like James Bond.
|Wetland - Olympic mudminnow "home"|
Wetlands, the place I call my home
If my home is destroyed where will I go?
Is a home for you better than a home for me?
The swampy, muddy marsh is my idea of a home
Where I swim, eat, and play all day.
My home the wetlands.
The water isn’t clean
and I’m all dressed up in neoprene
Meghan, Lauryn, and Bryan is the team.
I’m a minnow catching fiend.
The ladies like to nag
B-RY has got the fish in the bag
With a little bit of mud and some frog ovary swag
I see a minnow over there
That little guy has no hair.
He is small not like a bear
I walk slow so he won’t scare.
Translucent bodies, flecks of gold, love to live in a quiet environment protected by tall red alder, hidden in grasses, swishing in mud, they survive the elements, deposited by a glacier only found in Washington; sensitive to changes in the wetlands.
To find out more about the Olympic mudminnow, please see our earlier post.