Lilies of the Pond (Fish, too!)

(Click on any picture for a larger view...)

Bird's eye view of the pond, although I hope the birds aren't watching. If you look close you can make out the Blue Gouramis waiting to be fed. More down-to-earth view and the gouramis are easier to see. The plants on the waterfall are an assortment of mints, which I've already had to trim severely.
The lilies look white in this photo because they are so much brighter than everything else. So much for digital's supposed dynamic range advantage over film. This is a more accurate rendition of the color of this plant's flowers.
The plant on the right side of the pond produces white flowers with brilliant yellow-orange centers. There's a third plant with red/pink flowers, but it's a late-bloomer. Each flower opens in the morning and closes in the afternoon (which means I miss most of their display during the week.)
Another view of the yellow/pink lily. Each flower opens and closes over about three days, then stops. The flowers are on sturdy stalks (much thicker than the leaf stalks) and when the flower stops opening the stalk starts to coil into a spiral pulling the bud under water. Pretty weird looking.
This fly had better watch out. There are always hungry fish about looking for tasty bugs to eat. We've had dragon flies visit and a very noisy tree frog took up residence among the mint for a while. I don't know if they will produce seeds or not. What I've read says to cut off the dying flower stalk, which is probably to keep them blooming. They seem to have all of the right equipment, though.
Mostly the lilies rest on the surface of the water, but sometimes the stalk protrudes up a bit. You can see here how sturdy it really is. Hiding under these lily pads, in addition to the six Blue Gouramis are six Kissing Gouramis, six Giant Danios, nine (or so) Red Wagtail Platies, about 50 mosquito fish (ever increasing numbers), one female Firemouth Cichlid (named Wanda) and a practically invisible Plecostomus.
The pink lilies finally bloomed! They are really gorgeous, and a nice contrast to the yellow and white lilies. This third lily plant looked for a while like it wasn't going to grow at all. I think its original crown was below the soil and it took it a while to develop a new one.
As you can see, it's made up for lost time. The blooms are a gorgeous deep pink color, fading to a soft pinkish white at the tips. The yellow-orange center really stands out on these, making them a very colorful sight.
The pink lilies bloom earlier, and close earlier, than the yellow and white. Maybe they are a hybrid with a night-blooming lily? Most mornings now we have at least one bloom on each of the lily plants! Very pretty!

The lilies and other plants are all cold-hardy, the fish not so much. Most of them are garden-variety tropical fish, mostly tank raised so they've never actually lived in the tropics, at least not in the wild. We started the pond in April and it got a bit cold practically as soon as the fish went in the pond. Who would have expected a freeze in north Florida in April?

The water temp dipped below 60 degrees several nights in a row, with no ill effects, but I expect that an extended period below 60, and any time at all below 50, would take its toll. The mosquito fish are native, and would be fine, but I'd like to get through the winter with more than just mosquito fish still alive.

Pretty soon I'll be working on a design for a heater for the pond and at least a partial removable cover to hold the heat in. I'm open to suggestion. I'm concerned about heat, too, but so far the water temp hasn't exceeded the lower 80's.

We have had some possible casualties, unrelated to temperature. We added a half-dozen albino Corydoras catfish, which were briefly an active and easy to spot addition to the pond. I did a thorough search this morning and no sign of them (although there are plenty of places they could be hiding.) We'll see if they show themselves again, or if they've gone to that great pond in the sky (where Tetramin is plentiful and the water is always 74 degrees.)

Update: I just saw three of the Corydoras cats, so at least some of them are still alive and apparently well. Those buggers sure can hide!