Lynda Johnson enjoys some spring paddling in Pamlico County on Kershaw Creek.
If you’ve been up the creek paddling you may have noticed your paddle getting hung up on this green stuff growing in the creek. This is our aquatic grass. Paddling and power boating through it can be annoying. As the Creek Keeper for the County I get calls every spring from power boater complaining about this aquatic grass clogging their motors. One boater even thought they should pour weed killer into the creek.
I explain to folks that this spring bloom of aquatic grass will not last long and it is the nursery area for all the fish, shrimp and crabs that are caught in all the sounds and much of what comes from the ocean.
Talking with local commercial crabbers, they tell me that the grass hangs on the ropes and traps when they pull them up, but you can see the grass alive with small fish, shrimp and crabs. They understand the importance of this grass.
The grass only lasts about a month and then sinks to the bottom where it becomes a food source for aquatic life. This spring nursery allows these new fish, shrimp and crabs to get bigger so they can fend better for themselves out with the big fish. They move from the grass to the Black Needle Rush growing along the sides of the creeks for their hiding spots till they can grow bigger still.
When we paddle next to the sides of the creek the shrimp are jumping and we have even had them jump into our boats. The grass is just part of the life cycle for all of our local seafood. A lot of grass usually means a lot of seafood caught that year. For Spring paddling through aquatic grass here is a tip to keep the grass off your paddle. Slant the paddle slightly forward and the grass won’t hang on the paddle.
See you up the creek – WITH a paddle.
Grab your boat, paddle and a buddy and hit one of the many creeks around Pamlico County.
This post has been brought to you courtesy of The Pamlico News and our local Creek Keeper, Bill Hines. If you enjoyed this article and would like to continue seeing more like them here on VisitONC.com please consider a subscription to their fine print publication. Enjoy it with your coffee on the front porch of your house and stay up to date with all the Good News happening in your community.