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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Sen. Nelson shown effects of low flow on Apalachicola River

Published May 27, 2008
Sen. Bill Nelson saw the dry shoals along the Apalachicola River where rare mussels should be thriving and the shrunken pools which should be filled with stripped bass, and promised Tuesday to do what he can to help get more water released into the waterway.

Nelson traveled 25 miles of the river, which provides spawning areas for protected sturgeon and the freshwater needed to help oysters survive in Apalachicola Bay, seeing how the decision to hold more water in Georgia is hurting life downstream in Florida.

The river is six feet below what it would normally be during a dry season, Nelson was told. Some areas where fish spawn are being exposed for the first time. And the lack of fresh water flowing into the Apalachicola Bay is hurting shrimp and oyster populations. Species that normally remain in the Gulf of Mexico are being found in the bay and upriver as salinity levels rise.
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