Fierce Attitude: All The Latest Liscom Slough Spew-Infestation

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Carelessly disposed fish waste degrades the slough channel and poses a threat to pelicans. Photos by Ted Halstead

“Not even a witch oughtta be caught on the bottom of America’s spew-infested waterways.”

– Frank Zappa, “Drowning Witch”

Mad River Union Staff Report

LISCOM SLOUGH – Both newly restored McDaniel Slough and its Arcata Bottom cousin, Liscom Slough, have gotten a lot of attention this weekend. But where McDaniel received love from scientists and restoration workers, Liscom was subjected to abuse by criminally lazy trash dumpers.

As usual, it fell to citizen Ted Halstead to clean out the illegal dumpage, which he did using his own truck and time.

The dumps occurred at the turnout on Jackson Ranch Road outside Arcata city limits over the last three days. The site is posted with “No Dumping” signs. There, Halstead trieved more than 500 lbs. of garbage from Liscom slough during Coastal Cleanup  the week before.

Last week, a load of roofing material and shingles was strewn about the fragile waterway. This weekend it was green waste, lumber and tires. The tires bore the imprint, “FIERCE ATTITUDE.”

Illegal dumpers have not only been fierce, but tenacious.

In early September, the pollution included more green waste, more tires and still more green waste.  Besides being unsightly and dangerous, the garbage degrades the slough, which provides spawning habitat for key Humboldt Bay animal species.

Inexpensive and ethical means exist to locally dispose of all the waste left at Liscom Slough.

Halstead has received wide recognition and some assistance from NGOs for his efforts. Humboldt Baykeeper and Todd Van Herpe of Humboldt Bay Oyster Company have partnered with him for cleanup projects. Substantive support from government and law enforcement hasn’t been sufficient to either prevent destructive dumping or capture suspects. The City of Arcata has helped by piggybacking Liscom dumpage onto loads retrieved elsewhere in town for proper disposal.

“I feel like there has to be a way that we can do better as a community and a county to protect what I know we all value as a resource,” Halstead said. “This is not acceptable.”

A gallery of recent Liscom Slough dumpings:

Some of this weekend's Liscom Slough dumping. Photos by Ted Halstead

This weekend’s Liscom Slough dumping.











6 Responses to “Fierce Attitude: All The Latest Liscom Slough Spew-Infestation”

  1. This just goes to show that one person can make a huge difference; Ted with his regular Liscom Slough clean up and with all the work George Ziminsky does keeping Arcata Marsh clean. It's people like Ted and George that make the world a better looking place. We should thank them every time we see them around town or when walking (or birding!) at the Marsh. Good work!

  2. Need to set up trail cams on these places. Then publish the footage.

  3. really sick of these lazy littering irresponsible ASSHOLES! Good people dedicate their time and energy to help clean up what has been there for awhile only to come back the next day to find more fresh trash. FREAKIN SICK OF IT! Something needs to be done! People arrested and made examples of! This needs to stop!

  4. Angela Pearce Smith

    Oh Tim this makes me sick. WE have people dumping their trash on our property all the time. Police say I have to find some legal papers or mail before they can arrest anyone. They say power bills and phone bills isn't enough. So what's "legal" mail?

  5. Angela Pearce Smith not sure what legal mail is. hmmmm, thought power bill would be legal

  6. Kevin Hoover

    Tim Haywood I believe the legal issue there is that a name found at the scene isn't the same as finding the dumper at the scene. They always say someone else did it, and there's no proof otherwise.


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