WCO Report for Erie County 12/08/2010: Erie area, PA,
WCO Report Posted: December 08, 2010

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Posted by DWCO Randy Leighton on December 08, 2010 at 20:06:30:

December 8th, 2010

West Erie County, DWCO Randy Leighton, rglerie@msn.com


Anyone that has seen any of the televised national weather reports is aware that the Erie area has been hammered over the last few days with its first major snow storm of the season. The immediate lakeshore area and the City have been somewhat spared of the brunt of the storm with the heaviest lake effect snow dumping up to two feet of snow south of Interstate 90 well into Crawford county. High winds and heavy drifting have created the winter picture that Erie is all to famous for. The heavy snow and temperatures in the 20's has the tributaries high and flowing with heavy slush in many areas. As the flow slows, we are likely to see some ice if the temperatures remain low. As the tribs settle down, angler pressure should be light with plenty of elbow room available and plenty of good fishing remaining until ice over occurs. Winter brings a spectacular visual setting to the area tribs for those hardy anglers willing to brave the elements. Out of town anglers coming to the area would be wise to check weather and road conditions. Current Lake Erie water temperature is 40 degrees.

Fish Feel Pain Too Professor Says:
You may not hear them go "Ouch," but fish feel pain just the same, according to a new book by Penn State professor Victoria Braithwaite.
In her book " Do Fish Feel Pain?" (Oxford University Press, 2010), Braithewaite presents her case that fish, like most other organisms, are capable of experiencing pain and that humans can cause fish to suffer.

Here at Discovery News we've covered similar research that concluded lobsters, crab and other shellfish feel pain too. For me, it would be a surprise if they didn't, but scientists have been struggling for ways of proving the obvious here. I think Braithewaite does a good job of summarizing the latest findings.

Braithewaite found that fish have the same kinds of specialized nerve fibers that mammals and birds use to detect noxious stimuli, tissue damage and pain. She also explored whether fish are sentient beings and whether an organism must possess "awareness" to experience pain.

"We now know that fish actually are cognitively more competent than we thought before some species of fish have very sophisticated forms of cognition," she said in a press release. "In our experiments we showed that if we hurt fish, they react, and then if we give them pain relief, they change their behavior, strongly indicating that they feel pain."

She was initially drawn to the issue after reading about fish-farming concerns.

"By 2030, half of all fish that humans eat will come from fish farms," she said. "It seemed logical to me to care about fish, because agriculture in general is confronting animal-welfare issues. If we are concerned about animal welfare, we should be concerned about fish welfare."

She believes the United States is 10 years behind Europe now in its thinking about the way it keeps and kills animals in agriculture. Those concerns are just now starting to be extended to aquaculture.

"Electrical stunning may change the way we harvest fish at sea," she said. "We have a responsibility, I think, to make clean and quick kills of fish we eat. Certainly, most of us are not comfortable with piles of fish slowly suffocating on the decks of fishing trawlers at sea and in port. People are rightly asking: 'Isn't there a better way?'"

To do this on a wide scale, commercial level, protections related to pain and suffering that are now given to birds and mammals should be widened to include fish.

"There is a perception that fish have simple brains and are incapable of feelings, and this has somehow made them different from birds and mammals when it comes to our concerns for their welfare," she said. "But we now have strong evidence that suggests fish are more intelligent than previously thought and their behavior more complex."
It is hard to consider Braithewaite's book while watching this video. Chinese chefs have figured out a way to partially fry and eat fish while the fish is still alive.

Jennifer Viegas, 2010 Discovery Channel

Pennsylvania Steelhead Association Meeting Reminder:
The Pennsylvania Steelhead Association will be holding their monthly meeting on Wednesday December 8th at the American Legion Post on West 12th street (route 5 near the Airport) at 7:00 PM. The public is welcome.

2011 Licenses Now Available:
2011 Licenses are available at nearly all locations. Gift vouchers can be purchased for licenses making a great holiday gift for a friend or loved one.

Local Weather:

Wednesday Night...Cloudy. Snow showers...mainly in the evening. Additional snow accumulation around an inch. Lows around 15...except in the lower 20s near the lake. Northwest winds 15 to 20 mph. Chance of snow 80 percent.

Thursday...Mostly cloudy. A chance of snow showers in the morning. Highs in the mid 20s. West winds 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 40 percent.

Thursday Night...Mostly cloudy. A chance of snow after midnight. Near steady temperature in the lower 20s. South winds 10 to 15 mph. Chance of snow 50 percent.

Friday...Cloudy with a chance of snow showers. A chance of rain showers in the afternoon. Highs in the lower 30s. Chance of precipitation 50 percent.

Friday Night...Mostly cloudy. A chance of snow showers in the evening. Lows in the mid 20s. Chance of snow 30 percent.

Saturday...Mostly cloudy. Highs in the mid 30s.

Saturday Night...Mostly cloudy. A chance of snow showers after midnight. Lows in the upper 20s. Chance of snow 40 percent.

Sunday...Snow and rain showers likely. Highs in the mid 30s. Chance of precipitation 70 percent.

Sunday Night...Snow showers likely. Lows around 20. Chance of snow 70 percent.

Monday...Snow showers likely. Breezy and much colder with highs around 20. Chance of snow 70 percent.

Monday Night...Snow showers likely. Breezy with lows around 10. Chance of snow 70 percent.

Tuesday...Snow showers likely. Highs in the lower 20s. Chance of snow 60 percent

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