Re: NANFA-- American Currents

Christopher Scharpf (
Tue, 16 Dec 2003 14:47:30 -0400

> I recieved my AC last week, and just finished reading it over breakfast
> this morning. I have to make a correction though. In the section talking
> about some new books, there is reference to a book on snakeheads. Added to
> the end of this is a note that a snakehead was found in a Wisconsin pond.

Thanks for the clarification, Ray.

> I am interested in the book though, but wonder, is it more mass hysteria?
> Does it take an honest look at the demonizing of a fish with snake in its
> name?

No, the book doesn't add to the mass hysteria; it's more of an analysis of
it. For example, the book describes how one biologist mistakenly mentioned
that the northern snakehead can walk on land. While several snakehead
species do have this ability, the northern snakehead does not. Once this
"fact" got out and into the hands of the media (during a slow news summer
and when people were tired of hearing about Osama bin Laden), there was no
pulling it back. In no way does the author demonize snakeheads; they're just
the wrong fish in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The book is entertaining and easy to read, but it's more about media hype
than it is biology.

Chris Scharpf
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