Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Welcome to the Salton Sea

"Welcome to the Saltn Sea Recreation Area." Please step out of your car and into the swarm of flies. Try to ignore them, because they won't go away. And don't worry that they're obsessed with your car...it's one of the warmest things around, aside from the tropical heat.

Beautiful scenery: (More research needed) The basic gist of this is that the sea was cut off from the ocean a hundred or so years ago, and it was so beautiful out here, that people put a price on it and it became prime real estate for the wealthy int he early 1900s, the '40s, I think. Everything was going great for a while: kids were swimming in the sea, people were fishing it, and the beach was the place to be.

Then one day every fish in the water goes belly up and the bodies settle on the shore. Everyone freaks out, abandons their homes, and never returns. End of beach front property. Now the place is practically deserted, with flies everywhere and dead fish still lying in piles on the shore. Their bones have almost become one with the sand, until you walk on them, and you realize it isn't sand at all.

I was dumbfounded at what these guys were doing--they were fishing in the Salton Sea! Couldn't they see all the dead fish everywhere? I yelled to them, "Have you caught anything?" And one guy answered, "A couple." I asked, "Are there fish here? Alive?" He said, "Yeah. Fishing season, they're really good." I looked down into the water and realized that, yes, there were several schools of fish along the rocks. I'm not sure that I would eat them. The water is still salty, although it's been cut off from the ocean: What made the other fish die, but these fish live? Are they ocean-fish evolved to survive in this ocean-like sea? I'm dying tor ead more about the sea and find out what research has been done, if any. THAT would be an interesting science project.

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