The Amazing Flight of Little Ray
June 2018 by V. R. Duin

NO FISHING

Little Ray thought his world quite bland,
The same old water, the same old sand.
He watched birds take off and fly
And thought to himself, why can't I?
(“The Amazing Flight of Little Ray”)

There will be no fishing, due to water pollution and plastic pollutants that do not dissolve in water, unless the Clean Water Act is enforced and spread throughout the world.

Mama Ray and Little Ray are resting, but their minds are distracted by the water pollution that is threatening their lives and the waters around them. This pollution also means there should be no fishing. If you catch them on your hook, please release them. They are family members. If you eat them, the pollution within them may end up inside you. The United States has banned the use of plastic micro-beads in such cosmetic and personal care products as toothpaste and facial scrubs. Although this ban has not yet entered into effect, other countries are being encouraged to pass similar laws. Wastewater treatment plants cannot remove micro-plastic pollutants.

Fish and other ocean life dine on plastics, then get served as dinner, despite being full of undigested plastic waste. Much of the seafood consumed in the United States arrives untested for any type of pollution. As toxins move up the food chain, they concentrate. The highest levels of contamination rise to the top. For this reason, there should be no fishing. People are not immune from the side effects of contaminated food drawn from toxic water. Enforcement of the Clean Water Act could improve water pollution levels and save lives. Ocean life harbors secrets, many of which could benefit humans if they are not lost forever to water pollution.

Scientists from NSU, from which university V. R. Duin is a law school graduate, have confirmed that rays and sharks are highly efficient wound healers. As problems with antibiotics surface, could sharks lead to alternative cures? Additional studies show Novel Changes in Their Immune Cancer-Related Genes. Studies are under way to determine whether sharks' immune systems may provide resistance to cancers. Two of their genes have counterparts in humans that are associated with a whole range of cancers. Could sharks lead to the prevention or cure of this dreadful disease?

As can be expected, contaminated water can cause bacterial disease from ingestion. Among these, cholera is among the most common water borne diseases known to humans. Dirty water can also cause infections of open wounds in people and animals. NSU researchers found the sharks and rays they examined to have advanced wound-healing abilities. While this is not the case for humans and other animals, eating rays and sharks is not the solution. Ray and shark meat will neither cure nor prevent cancer and it is unlikely to help fight infections. The high content of chemicals and heavy metals, such as mercury, in these animals is likely to be damaging to health, giving another reason for no fishing.

V. R. Duin aspires to link Little Ray and Shark to cancer intervention over the coming years. Certainly, this merits mention to her alma mater and to Shark Week celebrants. We hope friends will help spread the word about this effort. The ray and shark in “Little Ray & Shark Patch Things Up” are team players. Mama Ray, Little Ray and Shark want everyone for generations to enjoy the beauty, the health, the diversity and the fun of ocean life. No fishing will bring end to a popular form of recreation, sport and survival. It may break up animal pairs that mate for life, including some birds and some fishes. It may weaken or kill animals that depend upon fishing for survival.

Every marine animal is affected by water pollution. Fish breathe oxygen, which is made less available to them when the water is filthy. They cannot thrive in water of this condition. The biggest place on earth is contaminated to such an extent that the entire ecosystem is threatened. Hope for reversal of these threatening water pollution conditions resides in enforcement and expansion of the Clean Water Act. Otherwise, the earth may end up with no fish and no fishing. Loss of habitat from pollutants in the water is endangering many ocean animals. Grouper, swordfish, sawfish and tuna are among the most endangered ocean fish. The backward-aging jellyfish cannot cheat immortality when snuffed out by water pollution.

Water pollution that degrades and dissolves does not totally disappear. The remnants of these contaminants are creating huge dead zones in our oceans and along our shorelines. Ocean life without plants or animals is not possible in such a toxic environment. Plastic pollutants, in particular, never go away. Not only do they get eaten to destroy life from the inside out, but they also amass to cause fatal entanglements, strangulations and choking of fish and other sea life. Where there are no fish, there can be no fishing by humans, bigger fish, birds, reptiles or other mammals. The natural food chain is destroyed. Lobsters and turtles do not break down over time, so they may not die of old age. However they do die. However, they can come to an earlier death from diseases carried in water pollution.

Man-made chemicals do not have to be ugly to be deadly. Radioactive waste may have a lovely glow, but it is not good for the ocean or for ocean life. Exposure to high levels of radioactive waste can lead to cancer, birth defects, cell and systemic damage of humans and animals. The hardy water bear is one of the few creatures that is able to withstand radiation. These water-dwelling micro-animals with eight legs may outlive us all. They can survive extreme conditions. However, intentional exposure to contaminants is not healthy for them. Like any other water pollutant, radioactive waste travels along water currents, gets deposited on the ocean floor and climbs up the food chain. Fish that are rendered toxic by water pollution may lead to the issuance by environmental regulators of no fishing orders for the area.

Toxic waste and sewage are dumped into the ocean from vessels, oil rigs and offshore construction sites. Dredging to open navigation passages, to extract minerals, to prepare construction sites and to restore environmentally damaged areas can cause contaminants to rise from the sea bed into the water. This suspended material can poison plants and animals. Companies and individuals located near the shoreline may be the major source of water pollution. Simply washing the laundry can leach hazardous micro-plastic fibers into the environment. These sources of water pollution combine with chemical runoff from agriculture, industry, home septic tanks, lawns and storm drains to destroy the biochemistry, growth, behavior and survival of marine life.

The future of the ocean remains endangered, due to water pollution. Unless the Clean Water Act is enforced and spread throughout the world, all the fish may die off. There may be no fishing, if enforcement of the Environmental Protection is not made universal. Water pollution travels throughout the streams, rivers, lakes and oceans of the world. It also reaches land. Deposits of contaminated dredged materials on land is controversial due to the health risks that may travel with these materials. The costs of testing, cleaning and preparing alternative storage locations are significant. This controversy is unlikely to be quickly or easily resolved. However, efforts to save the waters of the world must continue for the health of all living beings.

No Fishing Comments

  • Stingrays in Water admin says:

    Water pollution has many forms, including liquid, solid, gas, noise and radiation, but plastic pollutants are the worst.

  • World of Water admin says:

    Let's enforce the Clean Water Act of the United States and spread the campaign throughout the world.

    • No Fishingadmin says:

      No fishing due to pollution will put a whole industry out of work, resulting in more jobs lost.