A Health Advisory was isssued today by Madison and Hamilton Counties, Florida, for fecal bacteria in the Withlacoochee River, apparently based on a too-high water quality test result at the GA-FL line on Thursday (yesterday). As that washes downstream, it’s probably best to avoid the river. Upstream, Valdosta reported a too-high reading at GA 133, and that is probably also washing down the river, so this is not a good weekend for boating.
You sure can’t tell what’s in Withlacoochee River water by looking at it.
It sampled pretty clean at Nankin and State Line Boat Ramps when Suzy Hall tested it on Saturday.
But not yesterday, when Madison Health tested.
It probably looks about the same, but it isn’t.
Meanwhile upstream, Valdosta has revealed yet another too-high result at GA 133 on Wednesday. There are no sewage spills reported for the Suwannee River Basin in Georgia. But something is getting into the Withlacoochee River at GA 133.
Maybe that’s what washed down to the state line in one day. Or maybe the heavy rain at US 84 washed something into the river.
Whatever it was, best to avoid the Withlacoochee River this weekend.
Only State Line Boat Ramp shows red right now on Swim Guide, but contamination from the two known locations is probably washing downstream.
-jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®
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