Tag Archive | Puerto Rico

Mass die off of fish in a lagoon in Fajardo, Puerto Rico

Mortandad masiva de peces y exceso de sargazo en laguna de Fajardo
Staff of the Department of natural resources and environmental (DNER), of the Board of environmental quality (JCA) and the entity for the nature serve the emergency situation of mass mortality of fish and excessive accumulation of Sargassum reported at la laguna Grande, internationally recognized for its bioluminescence and ecological sensitivity.
The Secretariat of the DNER, Carmen Guerrero Perez, reported that agency technicians began efforts to remove the kelp accumulated in the water channel which gives access to the bioluminescent lagoon.
Also, removed the dead fish have been accumulated on the Bank of the water body in the area known as the fisherman’s step, an easement giving access from the Seven Seas beach.
The owner explained that the work is done manually and with a rake because cannot be machinery to the area by the high level of ecological sensitivity of the place and because that kind of heavy equipment would run the risk of sinking.
Meanwhile, the officer’s handling of the Natural Reserve of Humacao, Manuel Corbet, today performs water quality sampling.
Large amounts of Laminaria have reached the coasts of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean Islands.
The DNER next to the municipality of Fajardo removed yesterday, Monday, the Sargassum that is concentrated in Las Croabas, Fajardo.
“We have found a mixture of herbs marine siringodium with Sargassum seaweed and other sea algae. We are working intensively to resolve this situation as the emergency that is, not only by the ecological importance, but by the large tourist and economic engine that represents for Fajardo and Puerto Rico,”said Guerrero Perez.
Bureles, brunette, balajú, shrimps, Tarpon and puffer fish are some of the species of dead fish.
The President of JCA, Weldin Ortiz Franco, said specialized personnel in the area of environmental emergencies attended the bioluminescent Lagoon to investigate potential sources of pollution could be linked to the recent mortality of fish in the lagoon.
“A preliminary report was found nothing visible to determine that there is any chemical substance like oil or fuel, which will cause the death of fish. Nor was found illegal downloads that were from a private business or piping of sewage that were dumping in the water body”, said Ortiz Franco.
He added, “However, the Agency’s water quality program staff will be conducting a sampling to verify the following parameters such as pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature and conductivity physical”.
Meanwhile, the President of for nature, Fernando Lloveras San Miguel, said “we detect this situation and activate relevant government entities to investigate”.
Courtesy of metro.pr



Subject To Change

Depth: 33 km

Distances: 94 km N of San Juan, Puerto Rico / pop: 418,140 / local time: 08:29:07.4 2015-08-16
180 km NW of Charlotte Amalie, Virgin Islands, U.S. / pop: 20,000 / local time: 08:29:07.4 2015-08-16
204 km NW of Road Town, British Virgin Islands / pop: 8,449 / local time: 08:29:07.4 2015-08-16

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Water rationing as severe drought deepens after arid July in Puerto Rico

 05.08.15 Drought In Puerto Rico
San Juan received only 1.6in (4cm) of rain in July, the fourth-driest month on record. Photograph: Alvin Baez/Reuters
Other Caribbean islands also are struggling with a drought, including Jamaica, St Lucia and the Dominican Republic
A deepening drought in Puerto Rico that has affected 2.5 million people forced the government to extend severe water rationing measures to more communities that are already struggling with an economic crisis.
Another 180,000 customers will now receive water only every third day, raising the total facing 48-hour cuts in service to 400,000, as the US territory’s main reservoirs continue to shrink, according to the island’s water and sewer company.
“We have to keep the water that’s available under control,” said Alberto Lázaro, the company’s executive director, on Wednesday.
Nearly 13% of Puerto Rico is under an extreme drought and another 39% under a severe one, according to the National Drought Mitigation Center.
July was the fourth-driest month on record in San Juan since 1898, with only 1.6in (4cm) of rain, said Carlos Anselmi, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
So far this year, it has rained as much as 12in (31cm) less than usual in San Juan, and as much as 20in (51cm) less in some areas at the Carraizo reservoir, he said.
Forecasters blame the El Niño phenomenon, a warming of the tropical Pacific that affects global weather and has led to a quiet Atlantic hurricane season, which began in June and ends in November.
The lack of rain has forced some businesses in Puerto Rico to temporarily close, while others, such as motels, have reported a slight increase in customers.
The drought comes as Puerto Rico is struggling through a nearly decade-long economic slump that has led authorities to raise sales taxes, even on bottled water.
Olga Rodríguez, a 62-year-old San Juan resident who lives with her elderly father, has received water only every third day for more than a month now. She worries it will only worsen.
“May God help us all, because we need it,” she said in a phone interview.
The rationing measures began when the governor declared a state of emergency in mid-May, and government officials have said customers might see cuts of more than 48 hours if dry conditions persist.
Other Caribbean islands also are struggling with a drought, including Jamaica, St Lucia and the Dominican Republic.
Courtesy of theguardian.com



Subject To Change

Depth: 28 km

Distances: 162 km W of San Juan, Puerto Rico / pop: 418,140 / local time: 23:35:28.2 2015-07-16
66 km NW of Aguada, Puerto Rico / pop: 4,040 / local time: 23:35:28.2 2015-07-16

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Subject To Change

Depth: 43 km

Distances: 160 km W of San Juan, Puerto Rico / pop: 418,140 / local time: 15:34:38.5 2015-07-16
60 km NW of Aguada, Puerto Rico / pop: 4,040 / local time: 15:34:38.5 2015-07-16

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Subject To Change

Depth: 51 km

Distances: 192 km NW of San Juan, Puerto Rico / pop: 418,140 / local time: 09:00:03.3 2015-07-15
107 km NW of Aguada, Puerto Rico / pop: 4,040 / local time: 09:00:03.3 2015-07-15
92 km NE of Punta Cana, Dominican Republic / pop: 100,023 / local time: 09:00:03.3 2015-07-15

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Subject To Change

Depth: 30 km

Distances: 75 km N of San Juan, Puerto Rico / pop: 418,140 / local time: 10:10:21.4 2015-04-12
158 km NW of Charlotte Amalie, Virgin Islands, U.S. / pop: 20,000 / local time: 10:10:21.4 2015-04-12
182 km NW of Road Town, British Virgin Islands / pop: 8,449 / local time: 10:10:21.4 2015-04-12

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Thousands of dead fish wash ashore in Puerto Rico, America

Dead fish

The work of gathering thousands of fish found dead was due to low oxygen levels caused by lack of rainfall in La Plata in Toa Alta, north of Puerto Rico, continues to follow in cooperation with several agencies of the Executive of the Caribbean island .

The secretary of the Department of Natural and Environmental Resources (DNER), Carmen Guerrero Pérez, said today in a statement that the agency staff working hard in collaboration with other state agencies. 

Pérez Guerrero said he has gathered lot of fish since Monday in collaboration with staff of the Water and Sewer Authority (AAA). 

This work is “an important measure to prevent further oxygen level of the water by the effect of the decomposition is compromised. The AAA has documented that has not affected the quality of drinking water distributed and that is our main goal, “said the official. 

He reiterated that the cause of death was low oxygen levels in the reservoir. 

The species affected are from Sunday sardines, sea bass, tucunares, bearded or catfish, red devil and red piggy mouth. 

Guerrero Pérez reiterated that it is important that the public not to consume dead fish because although the reason of death was lack of dissolved oxygen, they decompose rapidly and may pose a health risk.

Puerto Rico declares epidemic as Chikungunya Virus continues to spread unabated

Chikungunya Virus Alert

The Puerto Rican government declared on July 17 that the mosquito-transmitted disease chikungunya has reached epidemic proportions. Puerto Rico is only the latest country to fall prey to the disease, which has been sweeping the Caribbean since its arrival in late 2013.
According to the Pan American Health Organization, a total of 354,000 cases are suspected or confirmed across the Caribbean as a July 11.
“We’re seeing an epidemic ripping through a naive population, with a very large number of cases in the Dominican Republic and elsewhere,” said Peter Hotez of Baylor College of Medicine. “There is every reason to believe we could see similar epidemics along the US Gulf Coast maybe later this summer or starting next year.”

Virus causes severe pain

Chikungunya, first identified in Africa in 1953, is characterized by symptoms similar to those of dengue fever, another mosquito-borne illness.
“As with dengue fever, there is a high fever,” said emergency room doctor Dominic Martinello of Anna Jaques Hospital in Newburyport, Mass. “There will be a high fever of up to 104 degrees. There will be pretty significant joint pain and possibly a rash. There may be nausea and vomiting, but rarely would a patient die.
“The incubation period is about one to 12 days. The person may have the fever for one or two days. The joint pain, while it can be severe, can last for five to seven days and then the person should recover.”
Chikungunya first arrived in Puerto Rico in late May, and more than 200 cases have been confirmed mostly in or around the capital.

Disease has already reached mainland U.S.

Cases of Chikungunya have already been reported in the mainland United States as well. Just a week after the Puerto Rico announcement, Florida health officials announced two confirmed cases of people who had contracted the disease from local mosquitoes. This marks the first evidence of the disease becoming endemic to the mainland.
“There is definitely a lot of discussion about this and we are watching,” said Beth Daly, chief of infectious disease surveillance at the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services. “There have actually been 497 cases of this virus in the U.S., but that includes the territories like Puerto Rico. We have seen 300 cases in 30 states, but with the exception of the two Florida cases, all have been in returning travelers.”
It remains to be seen whether Chikungunya will be able to establish itself on the US mainland over the long term. According to Dr. Joseph Gross of River Valley Infectious Disease Specialists, three factors are required for a mosquito-borne virus to colonize a new area: the virus itself, a high enough population for the disease to spread and the correct species of mosquito. In the case of Chikungunya, the mosquitoes must be of the species Aedes aegypti or Aedes albopictus. While both species can be found in the southeastern United States and parts of the Southwest, only A. albopictus is found throughout the mid-Atlantic states and the lower Midwest.
“It will be interesting to see what happens,” Dr. Gross said. “We have seen this before, with West Nile virus and with dengue fever. Dengue did not take a hold in the country, but West Nile did. It may be climate related, but there are other factors that could make the difference as well.”
There is no cure for Chikungunya, and no treatment other than painkillers for symptomatic relief. The best way to avoid contracting it, health experts say, is to prevent mosquito bites by wearing long pants, long sleeves and insect repellent. For natural, nontoxic ways to repel bugs, check into using garlic and essential oils.



Subject To Change

Depth: 35 km

Distances: 194 km W of San Juan, Puerto Rico / pop: 418,140 / local time: 06:07:14.8 2014-07-07
100 km NW of Aguada, Puerto Rico / pop: 4,040 / local time: 06:07:14.8 2014-07-07
77 km NE of Punta Cana, Dominican Republic / pop: 100,023 / local time: 06:07:14.8 2014-07-07

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