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[Annelida] Re: [CRUST-L:4724] Re: removing mud from the seafloor

Peter Wirtz via annelida%40net.bio.net (by peterwirtz2004 from yahoo.com)
Tue Apr 13 00:30:11 EST 2010

Dear Pierre,
essentially I agree with you. In this case (and more in the future ?)
1) the disaster was not natural but man-made (the heavy rains would not have caused these mud slides without prior human activity in the area)
2) when only small places are left as Natural Parks (i.e. the rest is already being destroyed in a systematic way), should we not try to "help" these in the sense of protecting them against factors changing them totally, here transforming a rocky area into a muddy one ? 

Prof. Dr. Peter Wirtz
PO Box 103
P - 9125 Canico, Madeira
Tel+Fax 00351-291-934784
peterwirtz2004 from yahoo.com

My books, nudibranch photos:

Fish photos:

Two galleries with underwater photos from Madeira:

Publication list:

A very large collection of animal images (and growing)

--- On Mon, 4/12/10, Pierre Chevaldonne <pierre.chevaldonne from univmed.fr> wrote:

From: Pierre Chevaldonne <pierre.chevaldonne from univmed.fr>
Subject: [CRUST-L:4724] Re: removing mud from the seafloor
To: annelida from magpie.bio.indiana.edu, crust-l from vims.edu
Date: Monday, April 12, 2010, 10:01 PM

Hi Peter, Hi all,

We have all been shocked by the spectacular images we've seen from Madeira. I hope all of you are recovering as much as you can from the terrible storm.

However, your message produced some reactions here which I'll try to summarize briefly.

Natural distasters are a bad experience to human beings, and will be worse and worse as humans will pretend to tame "mother nature".
However, they are part of processes having shaped today's biodiversity and it feels strange to some of us that anyone needs to "clean" their effects, particularly in a national park.
Coming from an erosion-prone island such as Madeira, such attempts seem incongruous, and I'm sure that on a timescale that, perhaps, is not compatible with our own personal comfort, Nature will overcome processes humans call disasters, but which are barely evolutionary hiccups.

Garajau will certainly survive this current layer of mud, just wait the next winter storm perhaps... The money will probably be best allocated to people or causes in real need for it.

This being said, you know how attached I am to Madeira and Garajau in particular, so I really hope Madeira's nature and human settlement will soon recover from this extreme event.

My best to all.


Pierre Chevaldonné
Station Marine d'Endoume
Rue Batterie des Lions
13007 Marseille France

----- Message de peterwirtz2004 from yahoo.com ---------
    Date : Sun, 11 Apr 2010 07:02:19 -0700 (PDT)
     De : Peter Wirtz <peterwirtz2004 from yahoo.com>
Objet : [Annelida] removing mud from the seafloor
      À : Annelida from magpie.bio.indiana.edu

> Dear colleagues,
> after severe storms and mudslides at Madeira Island, the bottom of the (formerly rocky) marine National Park of Garajau is covered with a layer of mud several cm high. We are contemplating to try to clean at least some of the highest rocky areas so that new life may settle there.
> Does anybody know a case where something similar has been attempted and/or the contact address of an expert who might advise us ??
> Thank you for your help,
> Peter

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