Thursday, December 20, 2007

Iced Catfish

I know that a lot of people don't consider the South a cold place. I certainly don't. But the ice storm that hit Missouri, Kansas and other states lastweek reminded me of a cold spell we had in Louisiana in the 90's.

The Mississippi river had ice flows in it, our bayou froze over and the catfish ponds where my husband worked froze. It had never happened before so they didn't know what would happen to the catfish. We all assumed they'd die. Catfish are very tricky to raise. Everything about their environment is precarious. Air temperature. Water temperature. Grass in the water, feed, ammonia, disease, etc.

When the ponds started freezing the workers seined as many as they could for sale before the freeze. Afterwards, amazingly, even though the ponds froze over, the catfish thawed out like they'd been in a sci-fi cryogenic state, and most of them lived though quite a lot were weakened by the change in temperature. We ate a LOT of catfish that year.

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