For those just joining, didymo (or “rock snot”), is an organism that spreads in coldwater environments, choking insect life and in turn, fish populations. A couple of studies, released years ago and [very] aggressively touted, pinned much of the blame for didymo on felt-soled wading boots.
Never mind that the data behind those studies might have been a wee bit light – an entire sport was moved to change. Boot manufacturers introduced a myriad of rubber soles, the environmental lobby spent heavily to promote “clean angling”, and a number of states banned felt soles altogether.
All was [supposedly] right with the world. Rather than ruffle feathers (because there was no chance in hell migrating waterfowl or any other wild creature or environmental phenomena could possibly have any causal relationship to rock snot infestations) the skeptics just went carp fishing instead.
The news of late should provide ample amusement, as responsible parties attempt to explain …
There’s new evidence published today that’ll have the fishing community in a tizzy, given their common belief that unclean anglers and felt soles are the root cause of the intercontinental spread of Didymo.
The article, “The Didymo story: the role of low dissolved phosphorus in the formation of Didymosphenia geminata blooms,” cites research done in both Canada and New Zealand (by their respective governments) that suggests anglers have little to do with Didymo blooms.
Read the rest, as only Master Barton could muster with gentlemanly political incorrectness. Those who shared the “common belief” might also benefit from reviewing Charles MacKay’s Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds.
MG signing off (because shooting first and asking questions later only works in perpetuity if nobody has the nuts to actually ask the questions)