Skip to comments.Major, Bizarre Fish Die-Off Along Lakefront
Posted on 01/11/2011 7:17:59 PM PST by Tolerance Sucks Rocks
CHICAGO (STMW) A bizarre scene is evolving on the Chicago lakefront, with Canada geese and mallard ducks gulping down dead or dying gizzard shad.
A major die-off of what appears to be the 2010 class is happening in Chicago harbors. Thousands, perhaps far more than that, of dead gizzard shad in the 3- to 5-inch range are frozen in the ice of Chicago harbors or floating around in open patches of water.
Gizzard shad are pretty sensitive, Lake Michigan Program biologist Dan Makauskas said. On the toughness scale, the herrings are pretty soft.
Gizzard shad, members of the herring family, are more sensitive to drops in oxygen levels than most fish. And thick ice came early to Chicago harbors in December.
The massive die-off was first documented Thursday by Carl Vizzone, a North Side fisherman who sits on the board of Perch America. What caught his eye was Canada geese and mallards eating dying shad at open water by DuSable and Diversey harbors. This is not normal, he said.
Hes right, agreed naturalist Joel Greenberg, author of A Natural History of the Chicago Region. Canada geese and mallards normally dont eat fish, but, Greenberg said, They are opportunistic.
Other species of fish do not appear to be involved in the die-off.
Makauskas, who speculated that the young shad may not have built up enough reserves to survive the early onslaught of extreme cold, agreed the die-off is abnormal.
We won’t see the annual die off till the ice is gone.
They sense Rahm Emanuel is nearby.
.....it also has been observed unusually chubby ducks and geese......
It’s the Chicago way.
Did anyone put cement overshoes on their fins?
What was the Major's name and why were he and a fish competing in bizarre ways to pass away?
No doubt, they died of grief over the tone of the Tea Party rhetoric.
The WHOLE STATE is dying off, they just passed a 75 percent tax increase.......AS WE SPEAK.
Good BYE ILLINOIS RIP
Great. That was great. Gave me a chuckle.
The WHOLE STATE is dying off, they just passed a 75 percent tax increase.......AS WE SPEAK.Oh, that has passed? Today?
Used to be good catfishing ( with shad sides in anise) on the Missouri in January/February when dead frozen shad were coming downstream in the ice chunks.
What is bizarre is that the reporter used that word to describe the event that was completely and rationally documented in the article. They want to promote global warming in headlines that have nothing to do with the content od the articles. Stupid, stupid lefties.
LOL. Thank you for that mental image of waddling waterfowl.
AS WE SPEAK..............Minutes ago
What was the Major's name?
I think the headline writer put that comma in the wrong place. It was Major Bizarre who was responsible for the die-off.
wandering waterfowl waddling through water
The same thing happened when I was a kid in Chicago, 50 years ago. Sh$$ happens in nature from causes we struggle to understand.
It works out very well for the geese and ducks. Fish are high protein and high oil content food which is perfect for extreme cold weather.