The Minnow Evacuation // Positively Speaking // Mark Wilson

Yesterday, Hannah and I went on a dad and daughter date, which included a hike down a dried out stream bed.

Due to the long summer drought, Smith Creek evaporated into a crusty maze of cracked soil, dry rocks, and broken tree branches. We walked right where the water used to be.

As we rounded a bend, Hannah pointed and shouted gleefully, “Look Daddy! Minnows!”

Sure enough, there was a small mud puddle, not more than three feet in diameter, and it seemed to bubble with life.

The last of the Smith Creek minnows flipped and flopped in their tiny, shrinking sanctuary.

“We’ve gotta do something, Daddy, or they’re going to die!” Hannah declared, “Please?? ”

Thus, we dashed home and returned, armed with a small goldfish net, a large Hardee’s soft drink cup, and bulldog determination. We were on a mission! Together, we scooped the little fish out of the puddle one at a time.

In a half hour of scooping we rescued 19 minnows. Then, it was time to evacuate!

I’m not sure if it’s legal to transport minnows from one body of water to another — but desperate times call for desperate measures.

Quickly, we sped to the Namekagon River, and then gently, Hannah released the little fellows one at a time.

“We saved them all, Daddy!” Hannah beamed on our way home, “We saved them all!”

“I like this kind of fishing!”

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Hayward, WI 54843

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