The mass bird and fish deaths around the world during the first week of 2011 is now hitting home. Beginning on January 1, 2011 fish began washing up along the Chesapeake Bay and piling up along the shores in alarming numbers. As of today, it is estimated that 2 million fish are now dead, and the cause is officially unknown, just like the other mass species deaths occurring around the globe. Early news stories are quoting experts here in Maryland as saying the cold weather was to blame. More bunk? It sounds like a pretty lame excuse, because Maryland has seen colder temperatures in December without millions of dead fish washing up anywhere.
UPDATE: January 8, 2011
Bay area fish have been subjected to cold water in the past, but according to local biologist still claim that cold water stress is to blame for the mass deaths of mostly adult spot fish and juvenile croakers. The fish have been reported so far spanning between the Bay Bridge south to the Tangier Sound, and it seems to have tapered off.
To date, experts and state officials responding to the mass species deaths around the globe are saying there is no connection to the deaths, and that this happens all the time, but go unnoticed under the radar. I live in Maryland, and I’ve never witnessed anything of this magnitude before and there have been many cold Decembers in the past that didn’t kill fish. The Maryland Department of the Environment spokeswoman Dawn Stoltzfus said bay water quality appears acceptable, and no pollutants have been found, and agrees with the cold water theory.