Zostera marina is a seagrass species, commonly known as eelgrass, that is found on both coasts of the United States, as well as in Europe. Unfortunately, Zostera is disappearing all over the place, including right here in New York. This could have devastating impacts on animals that rely on eelgrass as foraging grounds, or, as is the case with scallops, use it as a refuge from predation. This is its story, as seen through the eyes of an aspiring graduate student...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Great Flood is coming!!!!

If you live in a certain part of North Dakota, that is.  I have only been to North Dakota once (for the NJCL conference), so I have limited experience.  But I imagine its a very nice place with very nice people.  Well I came across this AP article about a place called Devil's Lake, North Dakota.  Apparently, this lake is an endpoint for local water run-off; that is, it has no drainage, no natural rivers or streams allowing the water that accumulates from rain and snowmelt to flow out of the lake.  So this lake has been growing over the past few decades, getting deeper and larger in size.  Since 1990, 400 houses have been moved or destroyed due to the rising waters.  Small towns are in danger of becoming inundated, while others were essentially bought out in entirety, by state and federal governments and are now submerged.  The waters have risen so high in recent years that the lake is only 6 feet from overflowing, which would be devastating to many downstream towns and communities.  A breach of the flood banks would send water into communities near and far, with estimates of flooding exceeding any previous floods.  There is considerable debate about what to do with the problem.  But for right now, residents just wait for the slow moving devastation.

If nothing else, check out the article here.  It has a really cool animated graphic showing the lake in the 1980s and the lake today. 

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