Hungry much?

Largemouth Bass eating Emerald Shiner

Largemouth Bass eating Emerald Shiner

Up until now all the action in the water gallery has been in the freshwater tank. I know the exhibit designers, builders and animal care specialists might not agree with me – they’ve been furiously planning behind the scenes! But, as far as I’m concerned, I’ve only had one aquarium (albeit HUGE) to fawn over.

So, you can imagine that a person can grow fond of these little swimmers. Well, this morning, upon visiting my buddies, I discovered that one of the largemouth bass had swallowed an Emerald Shiner WHOLE. What a pig!  I mean, the meal was barely smaller than the consumer!

And so, not possessing a gullet large enough to swallow such large prey, and not having the common sense to spit it back out…the bass just swam around for the rest of the day with a  big tail sticking out of it’s mouth. Seriously bad table manners!

After hours spent like this I started to worry for pig-fish’s safety. I mean, how long can one survive with a decaying fish stuck in the throat? And will that rotting corpse in the bass’ mouth cause devastation to the rest of the fish living in the aquarium? But my concern has been assuaged–because Stacey (CMN Exhibition Technician extraordinaire) assures me that this is quite common. Pig fish  the bass will swim around, allowing the shiner to decompose,  for as long as it takes. And everyone will be fine.  Well, not the Emerald Shiner…he is a goner.

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