Home' Tennant and District Times : 2014-0307 TDT Contents 2 TENNANT AND DISTRICT TIMES FRIDAY 7 MARCH 2014
new Aussie citizens
A COMMON English language idiom for a
heavy downpour is that “it’s raining cats and
But when locals tell you that they have seen it raining
fish, there is no idiom intended.
It seems that the more you ask about this phenom-
enon, the more common the occurrence seems to be.
Take Adele Stokes’ account that appeared in Robert
Wainwright’s book “The Lost Boy” for instance.
On an overcast morning at the Dunmarra Wayside
Inn back in March 1994, Adele witnessed “thousands
of tiny hatchlings” falling from the sky onto the sealed
surface of the road train parking bay.
Bob Baker - a straight shooter if ever there was one
- recalled his time on Anthony Lagoon and Brunette
Downs Stations back in the mid 1970s.
“It was the wettest period in the Territory for the last
century,” he said.
“Cyclone Tracy had wiped out Darwin in ‘74 and we
had three years of unprecedented rainfall.
“I have seen fish falling out of the sky on a few
“One time they were hitting the bloody windscreen
as I drove through the torrential rain.”
Sue Kennedy recalls her childhood experience in
the Hunter valley, NSW back in the ‘50s.
“I would have been about six years old and we were
driving along in a heavy downpour when my father
stopped our FJ Holden and told me to come and look
at something on the road,” she said.
“There were these tiny fish, flopping about on the
“I was amazed at what I saw, that is why it is such
a vivid memory.
“I will never forget it.”
Bob Bagnall from Elliott had a close encounter of
the fishy kind back in the mid ‘70s on Banka Banka
“I was working as a plant operator and a few of us
were heading back to the homestead in our vehicle,”
“The creek was about a kilometre from the our
quarters and we couldn’t get across because it had
risen quite a bit so we waded over and walked back.
“About 500 metres from the creek there was an al-
mighty downpour and before you knew it there were
hundreds of small fish all over the ground.
“It was an elevated area and it happened so quick
we just thought they must have fallen from the sky.
“They were only small, perhaps an inch or so.
A recent sighting of small fish at Renner Springs
Roadhouse also had the locals scratching their heads.
A few weeks ago the Tennant Times wrote about
Ray Aylett’s fishy find on Muckaty Station after rain.
More heavy rain last week at Muckaty Station
confounded Ray once again when he ventured out
after the deluge.
“We had 47 millimetres of rain one night last week,
and when I looked outside, lo and behold, there were
more fish in the front yard,” he said.
There are no suitable dams or watercourses that
would sustain fish within a kilometre or more so I
don’t know how they got there.
“Except that they came down with the rain.”
Scientific research would suggest that some arid
zone fish species such as the Australian Spotted
Gudgeon or Mogurnda, spawn sticky egg clusters that
could be transported by birds or swept up by thermal
updrafts, hatch in convective cloud structures and
fall to earth as fry.
This could account for the Dunmarra phenomenon,
but the appearance of young adult fish at Muckaty
Station does not really fit this logic.
The Leiopotherapon unicolor or Spangled Perch, is
endemic to Australia and is believed to be capable of
living in wet mud by aestivating.
Anecdotal evidence suggests that this species can
jump as far as two metres and are able to swim and
migrate in the shallowest amount of water.
This species has also been observed swimming as
far as 16 kilometres in as little as six hours in water
trapped in wheel ruts along a track.
Spangled Perch are what appear at Muckaty after
Locals recount fishy rain tales
FISH OUT OF WATER: Spangled Perch found at Muckaty Station after heavy rainfall.
SIX women were arrested after
another riot in the troubled Wil-
Police from seven units flocked to the
scene last weekend.
Acting Superintendent Michael Potts
said a 47-year-old woman was injured
as a result of a disturbance and taken to
Alice Springs Hospital.
“Police investigations have led to the
arrest of six women aged 27, 28, 29, 30
36 and 46, with further arrests expected,”
“The women have been charged with
a range of offences including, assault,
armed with an offensive weapon and
armed with a controlled weapon.”
Five of the women were remanded in
custody until their appearance at the Al-
ice Springs Magistrates Court this week
while one woman was bailed to appear
in court at a later date.
Central Desert police continue to search
for outstanding offenders who have fled
Calm has been restored at Willowra
with most residents now in Alice Springs
for the football.
Women arrested over Willowra riot
Rains bring noxious weeds
From page 1.
It can establish as a
monoculture along wa-
ter courses and drainage
lines, causing difficulties
in mustering and access
to water points as well as
impacting on ecological
The plant, which is poi-
sonous to humans and ani-
mals if ingested, has ap-
peared after recent rains.
Weeds officers believe
seeds may have been in-
advertently brought into
town by travellers and
washed along the storm
drain during rains.
Following a detection out
at Kraut Downs, weeds of-
ficers have been working
to remove the plants.
Ms Humphrys said the
fruit on the plants found
in Tennant Creek are im-
mature and the seeds have
not yet had time to ripen.
“Now is the time to erad-
icate any plants that may
be growing in gar dents
before seeds can spread
from the parent bush,”
“A particularly notice-
able characteristic about
bellyache bush is the
stems, leaf stalks and leaf
margins covered in sticky,
brown hairs. It has palm
shaped leaves with three
to five segments, small
red flowers with yellow
centres and smooth, green
fruit that can grow up to
the size of a cherry.”
Anyone who needs help
to identify possible bel-
lyache bushes can call
the Weeds Management
Branch on 8962 4322.
A FILIpINO family and a Bosnian are
Tennant’s newest Aussies.
Barkly Regional Council President Barb Shaw
officiated at the Australian Citizenship ceremony
at the Civic Centre on Monday where she wel-
comed the newcomers.
Ricardo and Joey Lacatango moved to the
Territory from the Philippines to give their
children, Sophia and Dwayn (pictured above)
The family has lived in Tennant Creek for
nearly two years.
Begic Senad (right) migrated to Australia in
2010 so he could be in a safer country.
He chose Tennant Creek as his home to be close
to his wife’s family.
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