What ARE These?

Nature Notes

Craters on the moon’s surface? Prairie pothole wetlands seen from an airplane?

fish nests

Believe it or not, this is the bottom of one of the Park District’s fish culture ponds at Shaker Trace Nursery at Miami Whitewater Forest!

This photo was taken after the fish were netted (and then stocked at one of the Park District lakes) and the water was drained. The holes are the remnants of bluegill nesting activity. Each one is a nest, built by a male to lure a female in to lay her eggs. Many people think that hybrids don’t reproduce, but hybrid bluegill absolutely can. The fact is that green sunfish and northern bluegill hybrid populations are 80% male, so they just don’t get very many opportunities. That means a very large percentage of the nests in this photo are probably bachelor pads!

Bret Henninger, Stewardship Crew Leader

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