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This is pretty nuts. From an article in the Washington Post (here in the DC area):

Male Bass Across Region Found to Be Bearing Eggs

Pollution Concerns Arise In Drinking-Water Source

By David A. Fahrenthold

Washington Post Staff Writer

Wednesday, September 6, 2006; Page A01

Abnormally developed fish, possessing both male and female characteristics, have been discovered in the Potomac River in the District and in tributaries across the region, federal scientists say -- raising alarms that the river is tainted by pollution that drives hormone systems haywire.

The fish, smallmouth and largemouth bass, are naturally males but for some reason are developing immature eggs inside their sex organs. Their discovery at such widely spread sites, including one just upstream from the Woodrow Wilson Bridge, seems to show that the Potomac's problem with "intersex" fish extends far beyond the West Virginia stream where they were first found in 2003.....

The rest of the article is here.

Kind of adds a whole new meaning to the spawn, eh? :-?

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Guest avid

This is not as crazy as it seems.  I remember reading somewhere about certain types of pollution causing similar reactions in fish in very polluted waterways.

Chemical mutations I guess?  

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Many studies have indicated that bass are in some instances hermaphroditic:

In zoology and botany, a hermaphrodite is an organism that possesses both male and female sex organs during its life[1]. In many species, hermaphroditism is a common part of the life-cycle. Generally, hermaphroditism occurs in the invertebrates, although it occurs in a fair number of fish, and to a lesser degree in other vertebrates.

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Just to add I have heard from reputable sources its not uncommon in lakes that have a shortage of females for some males to start developing female charateristics. It may not be caused by pollution at all.

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    Drums, I remember reading about this way back in '03. But the cases seemed rare. The question is, mutation? or adaptation because of the massive fish kills in past years? Do they spawn and or produce fish?

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Sounds like endocrine disrupting pollutants. A similar problem occurred with gators in a florida lake after a chemical spill.  I sort of feel bad for all the waterskiers in the river now... oh wait no i don't.

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Just to add I have heard from reputable sources its not uncommon in lakes that have a shortage of females for some males to start developing female charateristics. It may not be caused by pollution at all.

True but not in bass, it 's called protogenus hermaphroditism, sea bass, clownfish, swordtails are some of the species that do so.

This is more a case of hemaphroditism, this can be caused by chemical pollution and the most common chemicals involved are hormones used in crops and animals to increase the production.

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i have had two dwarf blue gourami, and they are hermaphroditic, they fight for dominance and the dominant one is the male. pretty crazy... :P

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Guest ouachitabassangler

That anomaly was reported half a year ago, and studies point to estrogen and similar female hormones entering via human urine into sewage systems, departing untreated into rivers. I was at the mall last week and am convinced it doesn't take much, apparently, to make a boy into a girly sissy boy. It seems to have spread to the majority of males.  :'(  Departing from the topic, I know, but ya never know for sure.... Anyway, it's a hot issue in the NE USA, and there are no fixes for the treatment of discharge water. Hormones are only one class of pollutants entering the waterways from sewage plants. They can hold it just so long, and now due to population growth some states are permitting a certain amount of untreated raw sewage to be mixed in under certain circumstances. Scary stuff. BASS TIMES is stuffed full of articles like that every issue.

Jim

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Just to add I have heard from reputable sources its not uncommon in lakes that have a shortage of females for some males to start developing female charateristics. It may not be caused by pollution at all.

Sounds like jail.

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And if you live there,....DON'T DRINK THE WATER!!! :)

Thanks for the tip LBH! LOL!

I live literally 5 minutes from the Potomac. While I'm way up above DC, these findings (smallies with both sex organs) surfaced either last year or the year before around here. There are several sewage treatment plants (two I know of) that have dumped raw sewage either directly into the Potomac or into a tributary that flows in. I've also heard (I've never been able to confirm this one) that farms next to the river have lost large amounts of ferterlizer during floods which has also contributed to these genetic defects. So it comes to no surprise to me that these symptoms would eventually make its way down in the more populated area of the river. Fortuneately, the last I heard was the genetic defects seen during surveys this year were on the decline here in Washington county. Hopefully, this trends continues and spreads to other areas of the Potomac too!

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I was at the mall last week and am convinced it doesn't take much, apparently, to make a boy into a girly sissy boy. It seems to have spread to the majority of males.

Jim

Man, you hit that nail on the head.  My 19 yr. old daughter dates these "metrosexual" guys.  Can not tell if they are guys or girls half the time.  They wear the girls clothes, talk in feminine voice, etc.......   I am told that is what is fashionable now, to be totally unisex.  

Maybe the bass are just trying to be trendy???? ;D

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Wouldn't these egg laden males weigh more? So there are more heavy fish in the Potomac now?

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I was at the mall last week and am convinced it doesn't take much, apparently, to make a boy into a girly sissy boy. It seems to have spread to the majority of males.

Jim

Man, you hit that nail on the head. My 19 yr. old daughter dates these "metrosexual" guys. Can not tell if they are guys or girls half the time. They wear the girls clothes, talk in feminine voice, etc....... I am told that is what is fashionable now, to be totally unisex.

Maybe the bass are just trying to be trendy???? ;D

   Metrosexual guys are just gay and don't know it yet.. theres nuthing wrong with a guy taking care of him self but if you spend more time getting ready to go out than your girl freind/wife you have a problem.

   

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lol im sixteen and im not into the whole american eagle ambercrombie deal and i shower and take care of my self but the guys that take out my sister LOOK like my sister.

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Just to add I have heard from reputable sources its not uncommon in lakes that have a shortage of females for some males to start developing female charateristics. It may not be caused by pollution at all.

Sounds like jail.

HA!  thats good n funny right there. yep

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