Real Poop Reads the Papers – Key Largo Fish Kill

Still catching up on my reading.  I saw this one on  Key Largo Canals Suffering a Fish Kill.  

The canals mentioned are all located on the ocean side of Key Largo around mile marker 95.  Residents noticed a “milky sheen” in the canals some days before the fish kill.  There are a couple of theories so far but no definitive answer as of yet.

Marine biologists with the Marine Resources Development Fund went to the canal to take samples from the water and from the dead fish.

Sarah Kazaranowicz, a biologist with the group, said any number of factors could have caused the fish to die, but she and her colleagues were leaning toward the theory that a type of toxic algae may be to blame.

Sargasso weed can also be a problem this time of year. Also, temperatures have risen this month and sometimes that causes plants on the ocean floor to suck all the oxygen out of a given area, making it difficult for fish to breathe, Kazaranowicz said.

The second theory is contamination by sewage.

Eric Sargent, who lives one street south of Heron Road, became very concerned when he looked at the water quality of the canal this week.

“It looks like whatever it is killed this canal, and it could be a long time before it comes back,” Sargent said. “The canal was getting very, very clear after they put the sewer in.”

That’s what concerns Hall the most. He said the white substance has the look water takes on when it is contaminated with sewage.

“I hope to God it’s not a broken sewage line,” Hall said.

Paul Christian, general manager of the Key Largo Wastewater Treatment District, said there are no reports of broken sewer lines in the area.

I hope to God it’s not a broken sewage line either.  But if that is the problem, then its one that is relatively easy to identify and fix.  Certainly much easier than climate change or toxic algae.  I’ll be following this story with interest.

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