Aloft Aerial Photography / Hunter H. Harris | Muddy Clammers
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This short clip shows how a changing perspective may adjust your opinion on certain activities on our Rivers that are supported by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources. This starts off with a view of what Fred and Mildred would see from their waterfront home on the Miles River. At first it may appear to be an example of the picturesque waterman who is (and many are) devoted to maintaining the environmental balance required to support his way of life. As we fly around the workboat we will begin to see things change, as the color of the water goes from blue to brown mud. The clip ends with a completely different impression of the same (once attractive) operation that we started with. As a result of this clamming, all of the SAV (submerged aquatic vegetation or seaweed) is ripped from the bottom and large amounts of silt are lifted from the bottom and remain suspended for the day preventing sunlight from reaching the bottom that is required in order to provide the energy to drive photosynthesis. These clams are not palatable but have become a favorite crab bait for the commercial crabbing industry.
Here is a very recent response to this activity from Mr. Mike Naylor who is the Assistant Director, Fisheries Services, Sellfish Program for MD's DNR in Annapolis.
"SAV is important, so is the filtration of the clams themselves. But the only way this will stop is if we can demonstrate that the activity is detrimental in some tangible way. This requires a study, which requires funding, which gets cut year after year after year. I'm not a big fan of clamming myself, but I can't just stop it for no science-based reason and the budget situation is really bad throughout state government right now thanks to repeated budget cuts. Sorry I don't have a better response, but it is what it is..."
So there you have folks....we are not permitted to use common sense or obvious examples in this matter. We are required to conduct an expensive time consuming study that will be exposed to the political and bureaucratic inspiration before we are allowed to recognize this threat to our Rivers.

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Keywords:Aerial, Aerial Video, Environment, Miles River, Talbot County, Video, Watermen