Mutant alligators in Mississippi?
A series of unlikely events has raised the question whether there may be something in the water near a small town along the banks of the Mississippi River. A group of Mississippi hunter bagged a 723lb alligator on September 1, thereby breaking a record set in 2012 during the 7-day state-mandated cull. But just one hour later they were bested by another group of natives who caught another beast weighing 727lbs, measuring 13 feet 4.5 inches in length.
But once again, the record-busting went on. Hunters continued to hunt for alligators into the subsequent days and it was on September 8 that another alligator was caught. Dalco Turner, a novice at the sport, caught a male alligator weighing 741 lbs. This is a new record for the largest alligator ever caught during the Mississippi hunt. The state-sponsored cull allows just 923 permits that allows each bearer to kill two of the massive reptiles.
What has added to speculation about the reason for the magnitude of these beasts is the fact that the locale where the gators were caught is so close to a nuclear power plant.
Very close to Port Gibson, which was once one of the most important riverine ports in the United States, is a facility known as the Grand Gulf Nuclear Station. It went on-line in 1985 and is the only nuclear power plant in Mississippi. Moreover, a recent power upgrade has made it “the largest single-unit nuclear power plant in the country and fifth largest in the world,” according to the facility’s website. Grand Gulf is owned and operated by System Energy Resources, Inc. (90 percent) and South Mississippi Electric Power Association (10 percent). It has an output of 1,443 megawatts and is part of the Entergy electric distribution network.
Reports have been rife about so-called ‘mutant’ vegetables and sea life attributed to the accident at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant in 2012 that released significant amounts of radiation into the environment. While reports of mutations in Japan have been largely debunked, the fact that three enormous alligators have been caught in such quick succession near the Mississippi nuclear plant has locals scratching their heads.
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