Sport fishermen and women, clean water activists, and everyone who cares about the health and future of the Chesapeake Bay’s largest tributary -– the Susquehanna River -– are invited to a public forum tomorrow evening (May 8) in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, to discuss the plight of smallmouth bass.
The event, hosted by the Chesapeake Bay Foundation, will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Midtown Scholar Bookstore, 1302 N. Third Street in Harrisburg. The forum will feature one of America’s leading research fisheries biologists, Dr. Vicki Blazer of the U.S. Geological Survey. Dr. Blazer and colleagues discovered the existence of sexual abnormalities (called “intersex”) among smallmouth bass about a decade ago. And since then, she and her fellow scientists have been pioneering further investigations into the interaction of water pollution, parasites, and other factors in the death and disease of smallmouth bass, one of the region’s most popular sport fish.
A recent Chesapeake Bay Foundation report, Angling for Healthy Rivers, described how a “perfect storm” of pollution, parasites, bacteria, and warming water temperatures are combining to cause fish kills and illnesses in five Chesapeake Bay tributaries, including the Susquehanna, Shenandoah, and South Branch Potomac rivers.