We've been having some very blustery East to Northeast winds lately, bringing massive quantities of sea grass, seaweed, and with it, plastic trash, up to the beach.  The beach in front of our condo is wedged between two sea walls, so the seaweed collects and can't escape.  Other owners here have told us that the weather conditions in January support this build-up more than in other months.  In the very shallow waters along the coastline, the organic material then starts decomposing and smelling mighty rank -- or, as Paisley thinks, mighty sweet. There's the occasional dead fish or discarded fish head mixed into the muck, adding to the fragrance that makes it irresistible to a dog.  She is drawn to it like a magnet, much to our displeasure.

The maintenance guys here have done their best in raking up what they can get to, and we have picked up several garbage bags of plastic trash ourselves, but it's hard to make a dent in such a large load; and more floats in every day.  Finally, the Grand Caribe staff brought out the heavy artillery to assist in the never-ending clean-up -- the front-end loader.  
A lot of the sea weed is floating in the shallow water rather than washed up on the beach, so when the tractor ventured in to try to retrieve more of the flotsam, a slight problem occurred.
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Stuck in the muck!
Now it was time to bring out the backhoe to pull the tractor out!
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Success!
After the rescue, the front-end loader took off, so there is still quite a bit of sea grass and seaweed down at the end of the beach he didn't get to clean up.  We will have to keep Paisley away from that.

On a different subject, here's a photo of a Lineated Woodpecker Barry snapped this morning.  Such a beautiful bird!  
Ruthie
1/17/2012 04:15:47 am

I love those days with unexpected entertainment!

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BeBelize Emily
1/18/2012 01:54:29 am

I know Ruthie, right? We never know what's going to be happening right outside our windows! They are at it again today, finishing the job (for today). Thankfully the wind is down quite a bit today, so maybe this stuff will stop washing in in such quantity now.

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Carbunkle Trumpet
1/17/2012 05:51:28 am

In a previous life I worked for a material handling company (what else does the Mob do) and I had to take various OSHA and DOT Safety classes. On each trip I would snap a pic of a huge safety violation and send it to my fellow work friends and they would be in amazement! Probably best was the large forklift that is (was) in the town proper and the mast was taller than the power lines so they would have someone atop the mast pushing LIVE wires over the forklift. Good Times

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BeBelize Emily
1/18/2012 01:53:00 am

Yikes! I am glad that was not my job! I don't think Belize has any safety regulations. I see guys working construction on buildings way up high without even wearing hard hats or shoes. It's surprising there aren't more accidents here.

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Jim Guettler
1/17/2012 08:03:48 pm

So do they all that seaweed somewhere and compost it?

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BeBelize Emily
1/18/2012 01:51:41 am

Hi Jim -- I wish...no, they just dump it on an adjoining property. It does essentially compost, over time, but is not put to any helpful use, like to amend gardens, and with the plastic stuff mixed in, is pretty unsightly. That's why Barry and I hand pick out as much plastic as we can since it won't decompose. It's horrifying to think how much trash is in our oceans based on what is washing up on shore here.

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Phoebe
1/18/2012 10:05:48 am

thanks for the seaweed report. I'm in Placencia this week and the beaches are all weedy here too so I was hoping to come north to avoid the muck. But after stumbling across your blog post, I think I'll just stay down here for a few more weeks. If it's weedy everywhere I might as well stay where the lodging is a little cheaper. Thanks again!

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BeBelize Emily
1/18/2012 10:29:49 am

Hi Phoebe -- Everyone tells us that it is just the time of year, so I'm not surprised that all of coastal Belize is affected. It wasn't quite as bad today since the wind was down, but there's still seaweed coming in. Enjoy Placencia! We are planning on a short trip there soon.

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