Monday, September 15, 2008

Hurricane Ike continues

Not really. But that last Hurricane Ike post got me lots of hits. Like Ike on Tina. Crude, but clever.

The latest issue of the Journal of Great Lakes Research is out. You should be reading this (along with my blog, of course).

In the latest issue ... a tribute to The Animals. As in, "We Gotta Get Out of This Place."

That's animals as in cormorants, the ugly ducklings of the Great Lakes. As The Ramones sang, "Bird is the word."

I feel for the cormorants. They're native to the Great Lakes. But they have this bad habit of eating lots of fish and pushing out native birds from their nests and killing trees with their guano (poop). Everything I've read to this point has said the cormorants don't deserve their bad rap when it comes to depleting fisheries. The latest research says differently, at least when it comes to perch in Lake Huron:

"New research confirms that trends in cormorant numbers best explain the collapse of yellow perch in the Les Cheneaux Islands region of Lake Huron. Between 1980 and 2004 cormorants went from zero to over 5,500 nests (about 14,000 birds)."

See, I was right:

"Previous research there concluded that the birds had no appreciable effect on the perch population. This current study makes use of more recent information and clearly establishes that trends in cormorants most accounts for the collapse of the perch fishery."

I can already hear the calls going out. "Shoot more cormorants!"

Coming tomorrow (or when I get around to it): Tapeworms!


Kristina said...

So how did perch survive this long if cormorants eat them all up?

GM said...

I didn't say they eat them "all" up. I said they eat lots of them. Like Candy. Candy candy candy!