Breakthrough in the Shenandoah fish kill?

Discussion in 'VIRGINIA RIVERS TALK' started by jeremiad, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    For those interested, check the article out in the latest Warren County Report: http://warrencountyreport.com/2007july19.pdf.

    It appears that the one consistent factor in the fish kill has been the use of chicken litter in surrounding fields. Runoff from fields into the river may be killing the smallmouth bass and redears. Catfish have been caught with large lesions and gill plate damage.

    Here's praying that they solve this one soon! :worship:
     
  2. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

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    That would surprise me considering chicken manure is used to fertilize ponds and to turn the water black to prevent algae and weed growth.
     

  3. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    This investigation is focusing on the addition of arsenic to chicken feed, as well as various antibiotics and growth hormones.

    The chicken manure problem has been stated to be confined to that used in this area, and not necessarily widespread.
     
  4. Paraguayguy

    Paraguayguy New Member

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    Mark,

    There are so many poultry farms in the Valley that the farmers are at a loss as to how to get rid of all the waste. In Rockingham County, the health Dept has been telling folks not to drink their well water for years from the over use of manure put on fields. The wells pretty much all come up with filthy water unsuitable to drink. Poor river. I used to catch the dickens out of smallies during the 70's. Not much left after these last few years. To look at the river, it looks as beautiful and pristine as anything you could hope for. Very sad.
     
  5. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    You're absolutely right, Kenneth,

    It's sad how much effort folks have put into cleaning up this river, for it has had a great reputation as an outstanding recreation source, especially being so close to the Shenandoah National Park. I would dare say that it is in better shape now (as far as trash, shore erosion, etc.) than it has been in years due to the efforts of the outfitters and guides that make their living from the river. They are also exerting a great effort to minimize development on the river with limited (far too limited) success.

    Unfortunately, this one plaguing problem remains. One year of suspected fish kill on the James can be tolerated, but the Shenandoah has had too many years of drastic fish kill to be coincidental.

    Hats off to the Virginia Tech researchers who are sleuthing this one to the source! :0a31:
     
  6. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

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    Havs anything been published on the water samples pulled?

    I worked all over Va, 2 years ago. 82 Autozone stores in 2 months and I saw so many places for a short amount of time so bear with me.
    I did get to work all up and down the valley. Thats some pretty country and I hadnt been there since I was around 12.
    What is the name of the river that flows by Covington?
     
  7. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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  8. riverdawg-1

    riverdawg-1 New Member

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    Mark, the river in Covington is the Jackson. The Jackson and Cowpasture meet in Covington to form the James. It's in this area and just downstream where the fish kills were this year.
    Chip
     
  9. Mark J

    Mark J New Member

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    Covington has a papermill the best I can remember?
    They are hell on a river particularly if they do any paper coloring.
    Their waste treatment may not be up to snuff or they could have had a treatment malfunction.
     
  10. jeremiad

    jeremiad Well-Known Member

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    An interesting observation is that for as long as I can remember (back to age three or so), Front Royal smelled like Covington due to a paper mill. Even though there was notable pollution in the water around the plant and downstream for a way, I never remember hearing about a widespread fish kill like the one happening over the last few years.

    This is somewhat like a pollution Whack-A-Mole! :crazy:
     
  11. cattin tonight

    cattin tonight New Member

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    hope they figure this out soon, its always a shame when something like this happens but it really hits home when its in your back yard