Letters

Sea cucumbers real friends of Baynes Sound

Dear editor,

I attended a Friends of Baynes Sound meeting last week at the Fallen Alders Hall in Royston.

I was asked twice to leave because I was not against sea cucumbers. This "public" meeting was only for those who were against the proposed sea cucumber tenures.

However, I stayed & heard an interesting speech from a retired pediatrician, who gave a talk on the topic "Are sea cucumbers from Baynes Sound safe to eat?"

His professional opinion was in Canada, one in six children have development disorders probably caused by the chemicals they ingest. He noted that many poisonous chemicals and pesticides from the sewage outfall at Cape Lazo, the Cumberland dump, all the septic systems, plus the farms and industries in the area leach into the groundwater and then into Baynes Sound. Sea cucumbers eat these poisons.

His closing statement was, "Is it safe to eat sea cucumbers from Baynes Sound?" and followed it with an emphatic "no!" This received a hearty ovation from the 100 attendees.

This silly false scare-mongering must stop. I live in Deep Bay, am an active boater and a volunteer Coast Guard auxiliary member. I am a true friend of Baynes Sound.

Our sea cucumbers are the garden worms of the oceans. They purify all the chemical wastes that they ingest and leave a nutritious sea garden bed. They are our ecological angels.

Furthermore, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency regularly tests the waters of our Baynes Sound under the Canadian Shellfish Sanitation Program. For confirmation, please visit www.inspection.gc.ca.

Sea cucumbers, oysters, fish and other aquatic species from Baynes Sound are usually safe to eat, except shellfish during red tides. Sea cucumbers are Friends of Baynes Sound.

Bon Thorburn,

Deep Bay

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