Green river not a welcome sight

Published 11:39 am Saturday, August 30, 2014

The Blackwater looks green in areas due to excess nutrients.-- Jeff Turner

The Blackwater looks green in areas due to excess nutrients.– Jeff Turner

Spirit of Moonpie and I spent the 25th through the 27th on the Blackwater below Franklin. Air temps ranged from 60 to 85 degrees. The water was stagnant and like in the CCR song, green in a lot of places.

This comes from a type of algae that forms because the water has an excess of nutrients from sources like sewage treatment plants, cows in the river and many other contributors. When we have low flow in the river from lack of rain, these excess nutrients do not get flushed out. The river oozes out, then oozes back in never really taking the nutrients away, the problem just keeps compounding.

Trash on this trip was light, but that’s because we have not had a big rain lately. With the water dead like this it affects the fishing in a negative way, at least for me anyway.

I caught only eight bass the whole trip and none of those were over the size of my foot. I wear size 11 shoes. The first night catfishing I tried a different tactic and using a slip rig cast out away from the boat. I immediately caught a catfish and later on four blackfish.

I thought I had figured out the reason for my catfish conundrum. An electro magnetic force field emanating from the pontoons was driving the fish away. Or maybe Led Zeppelin possibly. Anyway, I guess it was neither as the second night I used the same rig and did not catch a fish. I did talk to a fellow though that told me he had caught 11 bass on a plastic worm. I guess I was fishing in the wrong strata.

I saw an adult Bald Eagle when I got down to Cherry Grove. Evidently the adults are hanging around here full time now since the two babies they had this year are long out of the nest. Well, I saw the ninth water moccasin of the year. If it keeps on I’m going to break the 2006 record of spotting 10 in a year. I usually see more in September and October, so I’m expecting to pop that record. Seems the population is growing, and I just know all y’all love that on the two rivers we call the Blackwater and Nottoway.