Front Yard – Fine Fishing

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For the last couple of months everybody and his cousins have been fishing every day, rain or shine, in my front yard. Apparently, it’s currently the best fishing spot in town. Here is Sisilia and some kids having a go:

Sisilia and kids enjoy fine fishing in my front yard

Sheba, our dog, is always out there assisting. For Sheba, ‘assistance’ means snapping up a fish whenever she can get away with it. I’ve sometimes seen as many as a dozen people standing in the rain catching tiny fish one after the other. Here is what they are catching:

Tasty little fish

I haven’t been able to find them in my fish references. If anybody out there knows what they are, please leave a comment. The local Tok Pisin  name for them is mausgras. The word means moustache. If you look carefully (click to enlarge), you can see the tiny whiskers on a couple of them. This makes me think that they could be a juvenile form of some kind of Goatfish.

They are about as long as you finger. It seems that it would take a lot of them to make a meal. They wash them, coat them in batter and deep fry them. I haven’t tried any, but I”m going to go next door sometime and have a taste. These little fish are like snack food – they don’t catch enough to feed a family. Think of them as the Twinkies of the sea. The difference is that if you eat enough Twinkies, I’m certain that you will die. I don’t think that the number would be very large, either.

Over the weeks, I’d guess that they have caught many thousands. They use only a stick with a little line on it and a tiny hook. They put a bit of fish on the hook and throw it in. Within a few seconds, they will have a fish.

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4 Responses to “Front Yard – Fine Fishing”

  1. Jack Stephenson Says:

    Reading your blog every day makes it seem like you guys aren’t so far away. I look forward to seeing and reading it.

  2. MadDog Says:

    Thanks, Jack. Sometimes it’s hard to keep up daily posting. I have made a commitment to myself to do that. You can’t claim to be a bus driver if you only drive once a week. If you’re going to be a writer, you have to write every day. I’m writing now for several magazines. Those opportunities, and the fact that they print everything that I send to them, come from the tough standard that I’ve set for myself – every day – a post – whether I feel like writing or not.

    Therefore, I especially value comments such as yours.


  3. Bob Curtis Says:

    These fish look like Sardines with a Pigin name of Malembo (Buka),
    Best fished with a trangau (Three pronged jagging hook with a bit of bait above the hook eye. There is a smaller variety called Tulli and they also swim in shoals and are caught the same way. They make good bait for larger fish. Regards.

  4. MadDog Says:

    Hey Bob,

    Thanks for your informative comment. I take it you are a former PNG resident? You know your fish, man.

    Our neighbors say that they are swit moa,  but I don’t take that to mean that they taste sugary, just very yummy. They are still catching them in my front yard, though not in the numbers they once caught. I don’t think that it is so much about the nutirtional value, because it consumes more energy than they produce. I think that they just enjoy fishing.

    Keep reading. I expect to be fully insane in about a year, so things may get interesting.