The tiny but ferocious monster fish that lives beneath our feet.
The other day I was walking across the parking lot of the Jesus Saves Pentacostal Church when I met a fish walking the other way. I’m a friendly sort of person and speak to everyone, so I reached down and tapped his feeler just to say hello.
Sheesh. What a grouch. The little crawfish immediately sprang into a defensive position which you can see is pretty fierce. Of course you’d be grouchy too, if people were all the time talking about what a tasty treat you were and publishing recipes to prove it.
He was kind enough to hold his pose while I took a few pictures then we both went about our own business. He didn’t say where he was going but its breeding season here in Missouri so he might have been on his way to see his girlfriend.
I did some research on crawfish, commonly called Crawdads.
• Crawdads are a close cousin to the lobster. (Gee, I never would have guessed that.) They also taste like lobster and can be cooked like them. Their only problem is that they are about the size of mice, so it takes a lot of them to make a meal.
• They breathe through gills and live in ponds and streams. They also live in holes in the ground, if the water table is high enough. When I was a girl we had a lot of crawdad holes at the bottom of our garden.
• They can swim backwards very fast. This skill doesn’t do you much good in a parking lot.
• They can be easily caught by putting a piece of meat on the end of a fishing line. No hook is needed. Once the tenacious little guy gets the meat in his claw, he refuses to let go. Anyway, that’s what I read. Let me tell you how it really works.
My father took me down to the crawdad holes in the garden. We had a piece of meat on a string and he was going to show me how easy it was to catch them. We stayed for a long time going from one hole to the next. We caught nothing.
My father was an avid, but unlucky, fisherman and I grew to expect any fishing trip with him would end that way. So maybe the fact that no crawdad responded to his bait speaks more about my father’s skill than the actual habits of these animals.
Besides I’m sure you’ve heard the tender love ballad:
“Oh, you get a line and I’ll get a pole, honey!
You get a line and I’ll get a pole, Babe!
You get a line and I’ll get a pole.
I”ll meet you down by the crawdad hole.
Oh Honeeee, Babeeee, mine.”
Why would they write a song like that if it wasn’t true.
• Crawdads are crabby and don’t like each other much. Another real surprise.
•They make great pets. This guy didn’t want to be my pet. He was busy. However, the article I read said to just throw them in your aquarium. They live well with healthy fish and eat their leftovers.
Here’s what I learned through observation:
• I blew these pictures up to as large as I could get them and noticed that he has a molar on each side. If he were mine, I could take him to a pet dentist to have them cleaned.
• His “hands” are the bifurcated toes on his front legs. He feeds himself with them, not with his claws.
Well that’s all I know. If you are looking for recipes, go find another article. No way am I eating something with a face like that.