Selma school district students get live science lesson at Mosses shrimp harvest

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 1, 2007


MOSSES &045; Jameka Merritt got some help with her science paper that’s due Friday.

The Selma High senior’s paper on the desalinization of water was enhanced by her class trip to Bay Boy Farms’ annual shrimp harvest, where the seafood delicacies that live in saltwater are grown in a pond.

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Merritt was among about 50 students from Selma High and Selma middle schools who made the 40-mile journal to what Selma science teacher called,&8220;an outdoor lab.&8221;

The students got to see, touch and taste shrimp grown in a pond. One of the big questions they had was how the drought affected the shrimp.

The water is pumped from a 1,000-foot well and is plentiful, he said. It comes from 80-million-year-old trapped ocean water. The problem was the 117-degree heat index readings he experienced this year.

Joseph White, an eight grader at CHAT Academy was equally intrigued.

Another classmate seemed surprised at the process.

Jackson said he did not know exactly what his yield would be, but based on experience it seemed to be less than expected.

The shrimp are harvested from his two ponds by lowering the water level, then catching them with a net stretched over the effluent pipe. They are cleaned and shipped to a processor in Mobile, frozen, then shipped back and sold wholesale.

Jackson said his product is far from the commercial shrimp, free of preservatives.