I am a yellow perch from Lake Erie and I’ve seen my fair share of perch disappearances. The problem is that none of my friends believe me when I tell them that perch disappear in our waters.
Last weekend I was swimming among the weeds with my favourite school of perch when I came across what looked like a worm wiggling in the distance. I was hesitant at first and remained cautious. I slowly approached the wiggling worm and then backed off. I stayed around the worm but I just couldn’t see it clearly.
Life as a Yellow Perch is tough, as you know. We must be careful of everything from trout to bass to even birds. Not to mention those bigger perch that accidentally eats us because they couldn’t see clearly. How scary!
I was so hungry that day, it wasn’t yet summer and mosquitoes weren’t around. I would have eaten a minnow or crayfish but I hadn’t seen one in ages! Our lake is changing every day and I was so desperate for something to eat. But something in me told me to stay away from that worm.
Then, before I could change my mind, a perch from the distance swam closer to it and took a bite.
That was supposed to be my worm!
Immediately after that perch swallowed the worm, its whole body shot up towards the surface of the water. Then, in the blink of an eye, it was gone! The yellow perch was gone.
Where did it go?!
Startled, I swam to where I saw the perch last. It had left nothing behind, no trace, no scent, nothing – as if it never existed.
Maybe I’m seeing things... After all, my vision wasn’t the greatest.
I looked around me – plenty of other yellow perch around, swimming nonchalantly as if nothing had happened.
I swear I'm not crazy...that perch really did disappear!