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January Made Me Shiver…

“January made me shiver, with every paper I’d deliver. Bad news on the doorstep, I couldn’t take one more step. I can’t remember if I cried when I read about his widowed bride. But something touched me deep inside, the day the music died.” Now if you’re a baby boomer, or you’ve ever listened to a rock and roll oldies station, you’ll recognize those haunting lyrics belonging to Don McLean’s classic entitled “Bye Bye Miss American Pie,” a tribute to the deaths of Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J.P. Richardson, (a.k.a.The Big Bopper) in a plane crash on February 3, 1959.

And for many folks around the country January truly is the bad news month that McLean proclaimed it to be. After all, it occupies that dubious position on the calendar that follows in the wake of the Christmas and New Years hoopla, not to mention all the bowl games that provide a temporary rush of excitement that lead into an otherwise cold and lifeless time of year. Realistically, if you’re not into the NFL’s Super Bowl race, January can look bleak, promising little more than short days, long nights, and 30 to 60 to 90 days of bone chilling weather, depending on what area of the country you live in.

But For Pond Lovers
So the question for us pond lovers is, will having a pond improve our odds of enjoying the most challenging month of the year? Will knowing that our finely finned friends are parked safely at the bottom of the pond, hibernating away until spring time peeks in the back door, be of any comfort on those cold winter nights? Does our newly developed ability to ponder an hour or two away…productively of course, provide any kind of buffer on a frigid, wind-blown January evening?

Yes, It’ll Still Be Cold
Well, we have to be real honest here and say that, if you’re one of those folks who prefers Jamaica all year round, a pond in your back yard will not provide you with all that much relief. It’s still going to be cold, and you’re still going to want to stay inside. By the same token, the pond in your back yard will require you to have some sense of what’s going on outdoors because if nothing else, you do have to make sure that your bubbler keeps on bubbling and agitating the pond’s surface, and that it’s keeping a hole in the ice so that hibernation can occur in water that’s healthy for your fish.

But If You Look At Things In A Positive Light…
But if you look at your pond in the most positive light, you’ll see that wildlife in the area will still be sneaking in at various times, day and night to visit your aquatic ecosystem. After all, even though it’s January, critters still need water and your pond is where many of them still find it. And you know that, despite the ice that’s formed on the pond’s surface, and all the white stuff that’s collecting, life is still waiting beneath, ready to pop in 30 to 90 days, whenever Mother Nature finds it in her busy schedule to cause the atmosphere to warm up, and starts her engines running all over again for another season of naturally balanced, aquatic delight. In the mean time, my best advice is to just keep warm, and think about April.

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