Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani and NPR reporter Jessica Maszaros investigated the scene of a fish kill on Telegraph Creek where it runs through the Lee County Bob Janes Preserve.
Ms. Maszaros discovered dead and dying fish in a small tributary just off the main creek channel about a month ago. Samples were collected for several parameters that could have contributed to the fish kill and sent to a commercial laboratory for analysis. Results should be available in about a week.
Calusa Waterkeeper John Cassani and CRCA Director Gene Gibson and other local stakeholders are monitoring an application by the City of Cape Coral to permanently remove the Chiquita Lock in southwest Cape Coral that discharges to the Caloosahatchee Estuary.
The lock was installed many years ago in compliance with a court consent order to maintain and treat stormwater from the City in the South Spreader Canal System.
The City claims the lock removal is necessary for boater safety. Stakeholders are concerned the unimpeded discharge that would occur after removal of the lock would reduce treatment efficiency of the stormwater system and add nutrients to an already nutrient-impaired waterbody, the Caloosahatchee Estuary.
There is also concern that the boat traffic would increase dramatically after removing the lock thus jeopardizing manatees that could migrate into the system constrained by narrow canals.
The area is also federally designated critical habitat for the endangered smalltooth sawfish.