Snail Solution

The aquarium in my classroom is infested with snails. At least, I think they’re snails. They’re really tiny things that look sort of like barnacles. But they do have a hard shell, and one of my students said she saw one of them scraping the aquarium glass with its mouth.

The water is cloudy because I'm battling algae right now.

The water is cloudy because I’m battling algae right now.

There are some chemicals that do stuff to snails, but those chemicals do stuff to fish and live plants too. I would just crush them as I see them, but the gravel is filled with them. There must be thousands in my tank right now.

So what’s the nature-friendly solution to snails? Loaches! Loaches love to eat snails. I went to my favorite aquarium store last week, but they didn’t have any. This weekend they did! I even got to choose between zebra loaches and yo-you loaches. I went with the yo-yos. They have a larger, more eye-catching pattern.

They are small right now.

They are small right now.

I got five of them. One has a deformed head. Instead of a pointy snout, it has kind of a rounded head. I think it kind of looks like a dolphin.

This kids will be able to name this one because it's easy to spot.

This kids will be able to name this one because it’s easy to spot.

Posted in Gardening | 1 Comment

One Response to Snail Solution

  1. Lauren says:

    When you said ‘loaches’, I thought for sure that you were making up words.

    How interesting that you will have this little stop on the food chain happening right in your classroom. Do you have any student interesting in keeping track of the numbers for us? ‘Snails eaten per day’-kind of stuff?

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Again with the Lanai

Happy Birthday to my niece Rachel! Woo hoo!

My lanai has been looking crowded and junky. I’ve been trying to figure out how to straighten it up. I wanted long shelves, but the long storage shelves at the home improvement stores were also very tall.

Yesterday while I was in Lowes, I figured it out – I would buy a long, tall shelf, but I would assemble it in halves. The shelf I wanted was on sale. Twenty-five dollars off! Nice! When I got to the checkout, I found out the sale had just ended on Friday. The manager was awesome though, and gave me the sale price anyway. Yay Lowes!

Here are some before and after shots of the lanai. I still have some plant re-potting and re-arranging to do, but I have so much more space now.

BEFORE

AFTER

BEFORE

AFTER

Posted in Gardening | 2 Comments

In Absentia

My 30th high school class reunion is happening this weekend. It’s too far for me to travel in just a weekend, so I’m not going. I’ve been getting some of the communications about what they’re doing, but haven’t paid real close attention because I’m missing it.

Yesterday, Lloyd texted me this picture:

Ha! I am there! Yay!

Posted in Journal | 3 Comments

Picture Proof

At school, we are working hard to keep our assignment planners accurate each day. At the end of the day, I go subject by subject and write on the board what the students should write in their planners. Often, I get conflicting information about Science and History, both of which happen in the room next door.

Sometimes I remember to look next door and write down what my coworker has written, but sometimes I have to do it on the fly. When that happens, I just take a picture. It’s so nice to have something the kids can’t dispute.

God bless technology

God bless technology

Posted in Journal | 1 Comment

Some Spots

Gus has bumps again. I’ve been feeding him his regular food. I’ve actually been doing it for a few weeks with no problems. And he’s gained weight. He was getting so skinny on the prescription stuff.

Anyway, the bumps are back. I’ve tried a little hydrocortisone, and that seems to have calmed his itching. I’ve been watching, and it doesn’t seem like it’s getting worse.

I’m going to leave him on his regular food for now and monitor him. I’m back to maybe thinking it’s an allergic reaction to a bug bite or something.

Small bumps this time, but he has scratched some of them to scabs.

Small bumps this time, but he has scratched some of them to scabs.

Posted in Cat | 1 Comment