This is off topic, I'm only posting it here because it is a follow on to the above on topic post I made. Its a good rant.
"Elvers and catfish are not usually effected in the initial fish kills because of their much lower O2 demand. However, if the weather was warmer, they, along with ALL other species, would have been killed as well, especially as the decaying corpses of the shad and herring depleted the O2 level even farther. The water is still cold enough for some small amounts of O2 to be retained in the water, which supports elvers and catfish. I did see a few dead carp, though.
What is amazing is when the bleeding heart liberal press gets hold of this they will act as if this is just a nothing story and either ignore it completely, or you will see 5 seconds on TV blaming it on low oxygen in the water without any farther explanation or follow up. I've seen this happen hundreds of time over the past 50 years.
A week from now the ace crackerjack team of scientists from Maryland Department of Environment will send some college kid to the river's shores to investigate the kill. By that time, most of the dead fish will have been consumed by scavengers, herons, raccoons, foxes, snapping turtles and even eagles. His or her report will be the source of the kill will be "inconclusive" and that will be the end of it until the next kill.
Keep in mind that hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money has been spent on the restoration of American shad along the east coast of the US. Fish lifts, fish ladders, hatcheries, and research projects, some of which I have been directly involved in, have been utilized over the past 50 years to bring about the resurrection of this once abundant species. Yet, in their infinite wisdom, the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Atlantic States Fisheries Commission continued to permit an offshore, commercial intercept shad fishery - WHAT INSANITY!
When I was a youngster, you could not cast a fishing line in the Susquehanna or Delaware rivers this time of year without catching an American shad (AKA white shad) or it's smaller cousin, the hickory shad. Today, this is strictly a catch and release fishery for recreational anglers in Maryland.
Additionally, these fisheries supported a relatively small, but robust segment of our economy. In Harford County, Maryland, during the 1960s and 1970s, there were three dozen fishing tackle stores that did a thriving business because the fisheries of Chesapeake Bay were also thriving during the same period. Once those fisheries were depleted, each and every one of those shops went out of business. Other allied businesses that soon failed included small boat and motor retailers, small boat rental liveries along the lower Susquehanna and middle Delaware rivers, and all of the commercial fish processors in Havre de Grace, MD. Shad roe, shad fillet and pickled herring, which were once available in every local super market were no longer in the cases. In realistic terms, thousands upon thousands of people were put out of work, all because this one major fishery was depleted by the construction of dams and overfishing by commercial interests.
Unfortunately, none of this is likely to change, at least not from my perspective. I'm an old codger, I'll be 77 in October, and I have been watching these kind of things take place for more than a half century, and nothing seems to change. Yep, we get lots of lip service from the culprits, the fisheries experts, and politicians, but in reality, nothing has essentially changed in 50 years. The intensity of the fish kills seem to have diminished to some extent, but this may be because the populations of those species involved have declined so much that the numbers are just not available to create the massive kills of the past.
If this summer is as hot as some of the weather prognosticators predict, there will likely be fish kills in many of the major tributaries to Chesapeake Bay as well. Striped bass, Atlantic menhaden, carp, channel catfish, and perch will likely be found floating belly up in the Patapsco, Back, Middle, Chester and upper Potomac rivers, all dead of anoxia or depleted oxygen levels. Maryland DNR and MDE will blame the weather, and the press will report their finding as gospel, yet no one will point the finger of blame to the real culprits.
Sorry about the rant, but after all these years, I guess I have become a bit frustrated."