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The Poop Report: Or, More About Detritus Than You Might Want to Know

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On: Wed, May 6, 2015 at 1:18PM | By: Captain Ron Kowalyk

My lifelong love affair with poop has perhaps gotten a tad out of control; not really. All healthy critters poop, “does a bear poop in the woods?” Yes, except in the “New Age” gated communities here in Southwest Florida. Just what happens to this poop, if you care to think about it? In my neighborhood you carry an old plastic bag from Publix and pick up your puppy poop and put it in your neighbors’ trash cans. Naughty, but I’m the only guy who looks at and thinks about poop, I guess.

Here are an abridged number of observations about poop or detritus in regards to fisheries. Cattle feed lots used to, and probably still do, let pigs mix in with the beef cattle and pick through the fecal matter for castoff and undigested bits of corn and other roughage. Not kosher; I wonder why. Oy a pig; not in my cave! I eat a lotta pulled pork sandwiches and they’re none the worst for the poop picking.

Again, back to the point on fisheries. The water in the Caloosahatchee River is actually cleaner now than it was fifty or sixty years ago—poop control! For generations, the cattle business wasallowed to send mass quantities of poop-laden runoffflowing unabated into the estuary; the price of doing business! Now, all we have to worry about are fertilizers, chemical runoffs from the roads, and outdated meds the old farts flush down their septic systems. A tradeoff, maybe; I still prefer good old poop! This new concoction of eternal goo builds up in the fishery water and is then ingested by theresident fish population invarying degrees, Yucko, sports fans!

Some fishesare more seriously impacted by this influx of toxic goo than others—catfish, sheepshead, and whiting, just to name a few. But, in general this pollution which taints the detritus-eating critters is infectious across the board. Infected detritus-eating worms, shrimps, and other crustaceans as well as most filter feeding shellfish carry the goo in their tissues. Kinda like “crack babies” or turtles with two heads or cows with six legs, double yucko!

Of all the finny critters that carry the nasty, a majority of the farm-raised catfish sold as food fish are the most contaminated. Southeast Asia is basically a giant sewage plant with no controls on water quality, traditional poop fertilizers, toxic industrial runoff, and anunsupervised fishing industry. Thismakes for funky business partners. We are the happy recipients of this inexpensive fish flesh, better than starving! Maybe!!

So to sum up this poop report: Be careful what kind and how much bottom, or for that matter any, fish you consume and stick with generous portions ofantibiotic-staturated beef, chicken-feed, mercury-laced fish meal, and genetically altered cereal grains and corn. Don’t drink the water either, stay thirsty, my friends! Double yucko!!

PS: Global warming is a myth, the Yellowstone National Park volcano will never blow up, California should be allowed to drain the Colorado River, Kim Kardashianshould run for president... well, maybe, or am I just crazy?!

Capt. Ron Kowalyk: 239-267-9312,


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