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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Drove on to the island this morning and it was just about flood tide. Small tidal creeks were crammed with old grass that was floating loose. If you get out and walk the edges of these creeks you can see new green shoots poping up. These new shoots are what releases the old grasses from the ground. For a few weeks you will notice large clumps of this grass floating up and down the waterways and for some it will be a pain in the arse as it clogs some canals and gathers around pilings.

If anyone has been around the back bays recently you may have noticed that the water has been at times crystal clear. One local even said that it's a shame that it doesn't stay this clear all summer. Many think clear water means healthy water. It doesn't. Tropical waters are clear but very little life considering the size of the waters. There you have reefs that support life and if you aren't on or near the reef you won't see much in the way of life. Our waters on the other hand are teaming with life and it's these ugly batches of rotting vegitation that most of this life is based on. This floating rotting grass will decompose and become food for the unlimited amounts of plankton that in turn feed the small animals that in turn feed the big animals. If we didn't have the vast areas of wetlands to start the feeding process we wouldn't have any fish to catch and our waters would be clear but basically dead.

When you have to go around a floating mass of dead grass take a look at it. This is the formula that feeds the nursery. Without it we would be all looking for a new hobbie. It's the end of March and the grasses are floating and it's looking good. A long time ago a local guy who new the backs bays better than anyone once told me. People think our cloudy water is dirty. It's not dirt. It's the food that feeds the oceans and when you see it looking cloudy then you know that the soup is on.:thumbsup:
 

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Fred while flying into Philly once I notice a stain in the Delaware River coming from the Jersey side. I visually followed it back to the source which was the Rancocos and Pennsauken creeks. With the lack of rain that year you could clearly see this brown stain. It was the cedar from the feeder streams and back woods marsh lands.
It’s a shame the Philly side is so overbuilt as I assume this is just another source of food for the small creatures who start the food chain.
 

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People think our cloudy water is dirty. It's not dirt. It's the food that feeds the oceans and when you see it looking cloudy then you know that the soup is on.:thumbsup:
I thought it was because Picker knocked to NOBONERS porta potty over??:huh:
 

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Fred, great post. Its always great to see the rebirth of the wetlands right out back. Yet another sign spring is here! But one question...WHEN WILL THE STRIPERS BE BITING OUT BACK???? :D :D :eek: May have to break out some frozen bellies saturday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
These stories almost always start with "I was driving onto the Island":D....You live on the Island don't you?:rolleyes:
I do go off the island once in a while. Ain't crazy about it. Scarry with those tree things and that dirt stuff.:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Just got back from doing a little wetlands looking. Remember that Mothers Day storm last year. Winds up to 70 mph and a lot of flooding and dmage. I wrote back then about we, meaning the wetlands needs this kind of storm to clean itself out once in a while. One area I wrote about had been covered for years by dead straw grass maybe a foot deep. What had been a foot deep pool of water had become a blanket of dead grass. Right after the stom the grass had been floated off by the high water and strong winds. The next day Egrets, Herons and some gulls were back in feeding again.

Checked it out today and it's still clear of the thick grass. There is a thin layer of dead grass that has settled on the bottom and there were many Sheepshead Minnows swimming around. These are small minnows that have a shape much like a baby porgy. Short and stout. They were in their breeding colors where the males get all these iridescent blues, pinks and red colors to attract females.

Fantastic that nature can take a small body of water that we never even notice as we drive by. Over the years change it with tons of dead grass that actually choke it of life then with one potent storm give it a rebirth that will last for years. This will be the first full season the meadow will have after last years storm. I think we can look forward to a few years of top quality wildlife production out of our wetlands before it needs a good flush again. Remember reading one time that one acre of our wetlands can support more life than any other acre of land on the planet. We are truly lucky to be living in such an incredible place.
 

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Good read Fred. Many folks never get the opportunity to view this stuff from the perspective you shared. Most just complain about the problems it causes them while fishing or navigating in their boats. These are the kind of things that are not only interesting to read about but fun to take kids out and show.
 

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Ut oh... I can see it now. Who's going to make the first "floating mass of dead grass" plug :confused: :razz: Interesting post :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
If you drove onto the island this am where were you shacking in the pm. Are you upset?? Are you regular. Too many bananas maybe?? Pee4f is right about you.
I found the peep hole you used.:D:D:D
 
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