Toxics, long-ignored, once again on cleanup radar
"Fred Pinkney went fishing this fall on the Anacostia River, but fish weren’t the real quarry.
One drippy morning in October, Pinkney and his helper, Tanner Stoker, seined the shallows off a sandbar near Bladensburg, MD. Then they boated downriver into the District of Columbia and put wire mesh traps in a cove near the site of a demolished Pepco power plant. They baited the traps with open tins of salmon-flavored cat food.
Pinkney, a senior biologist with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, wanted the small denizens of the aquatic world that anglers would ignore, including finger-size mummichogs and banded killifish, which spend their lives in one area of the river.
But his chief target were the toxic chemicals that may have built up in the bodies of these fish during their lives in the Anacostia River. And so Pinkney’s catch was sacrificed to science — sent to a laboratory for tissue analysis. . ."