Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shipwrecks: Doty found. Asian Carp, too.

At 291' long, the cargo ship Doty was a formidable lake vessel carrying a load of corn when it went down in a storm in October of 1898.  Waves were reported cresting at 30 feet.

That's less than half the length of the Edmund Fitzgerald, but still a lot of boat.

Seems appropriate that the announcement of its discovery yesterday was capped by ferocious storms that whipped through the area, snapping trees, knocking out power, and flooding expressways out of service.  The Doty was found in over 300' of water.

At 3' long, the asian carp is not too shabby in size as far as fish go.  Unfortunately for life forms in the Great Lakes, it isn't shipwrecked.  The fact that it was just found on Chicago's south side, in Lake Calumet, means it has moved beyond the electric barriers meant to contain it and keep it from moving into the Great Lakes.

So, it seems that 30' of waves can swallow nearly 300' of ship.  And a 3' fish is ominously approaching the source of 84% of North America's surface water supply.

Last night, the sky turned pea green, and winds topped 80 miles an hour.

This morning, it's beautiful fishing weather.

Not sure which feels more ominous at the moment.

Wonder if I could persuade Christopher Brosius to create a "Great Lakes accord"?  Wonder if it would be a momento mori?

further reading:
Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel article on discovering the Doty
a thorough account of the wreck at a fantastic site for shipwreck fans 
Yahoo news article on discovery of asian carp in Lake Calumet
So much for dumping poison (rotenone) in the Little Calumet River
If it were only this simple:  Eat 'em

Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel
Illinois DNR

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