An Unusual Catch
By Burton K. Janes
Bay Roberts, Newfoundland
This is the story of William B. Bishop of English Harbour West, Newfoundland, and his very unusual catch.
One day, Uncle Beech, as he was affectionately known, went in the woods to gather firewood. As he had done it countless times before, he efficiently and effortlessly downed the trees and limbed them.
While there, he thought it was as good a time as any to set a few rabbit snares. Rabbits and onions in gravy, along with potatoes, made what many Newfoundlanders and Labradorians would have called a meal fit for a king! An expert at the art, Uncle Beech quickly set 20 snares the area where he was cutting down trees. With one snare left, he eyed a beaten path. That looks like a good place to set a snare, he said to himself. After setting the final trap, he went back to gathering firewood.
A week later, Uncle Beech went back to the woods, this time to check his snares. He removed a couple of rabbits. He had hoped for more, but he was pleased with his luck. The image of a brace of rabbits up to his knees in gravy, as one might put it, made Uncle Beechs mouth water.
Turning to go home, he suddenly remembered the additional snare he had set on the beaten path. He walked toward it, wondering if his luck would hold out.
There was indeed something in the snare, he soon realized, but it certainly wasnt a rabbit. It was a salmon!
Uncle Beech stared in disbelief, then gently removed the fish. Though it was a first for Uncle Beech, he wasnt long figuring out how that salmon might have gotten caught in the rabbit snare.
He had set the snare on a part of the path that was near a riverbank. In the week since he set it, there were heavy rains that must have caused the river to overflow its banks and run through the path. The salmon, swimming in the swollen river, must have darted through the snare and caught itself across its middle.