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Black Cats, Salmon Cannon and Skewers

17th August 2014
Posted by Gateway 97.8

Welcome Friends!… So another week another show and I’m pleased to report that things are just as strange as ever!

Summon the salmon! How?

With a fish cannon!

How do quickly transport a load of live fish from one body of water, to another body of water 200 metres away that’s up a big hill? With a fish cannon, of course.

A company called Whooshh has developed a system that can gently transport fish across distances of up to 200 metres at a rate of 40 fish per second, travelling at around 36 kilometre per hour. Whoosh indeed!

The technology used by Whooshh was actually developed for transporting ripe fruit and vegetables: tubes that can carry the food items from A to B without causing any bruising to the produce. The system has been reappropriated for transporting fish — particularly salmon — at high speed without causing any damage to the creatures’ scales or eyes. It’s kind of like a waterslide for fish, but going uphill instead of down.

Fish can be fed into the system either automatically or manually, and a seal is created around the fish, thanks to many partial membranes that are positioned at regular intervals inside the tubes. The membranes extend from the perimeter of the tube towards the centre, leaving a flexible hole in the middle. Fish (or any other products) can be fed through one end, and the pressure differential between one end of the tube and the other allows it to move rapidly through the system, out the other side and back into the water.

Whooshh doesn’t actually pump the water through the tube — the fish are transported through air (with a light mist introduced for lubrication) for their brief journey. In taking this approach, the fish cannon uses much less pressure and energy than other systems that rely on pumping lots of water from one place to another.

Why do fish need to be transported in across distances like this in the first place? Well, because humans build dams, which can block fish migration. Juvenile fish that live downstream need to migrate upstream. As it stands, many get killed by dams even if there are fish passage systems. A number of technologies can get round this issue, including fish ladders, lifts, locks and trapping and hauling them in trucks. The fish cannon is an alternative.

Talking of food here is the Gateway Chefs BBQ Recipe for this week!!

Jerk pork & pineapple skewers with black beans & rice

400g pork fillets, cut into 4cm chunks
2 tbsp jerk or Creole seasoning
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tbsp hot chilli sauce, plus extra to serve (optional)
3 limes, zest and juice 1, other 2 cut into wedges to serve
½ small pineapple, peeled, cored and cut into 4cm chunks
1 tbsp vegetable oil
200g basmati rice
400g can black beans, drained and rinsed

Mix together the pork, jerk seasoning, allspice, chilli sauce, if using, lime zest and juice, and some seasoning. Thread the pork and pineapple onto metal skewers (or pre-soaked wooden skewers) and brush with the oil.
Cook rice following pack instructions. Drain well, then put back in the saucepan with the beans, stir and keep warm.
Meanwhile, heat a griddle pan until very hot. Cook the skewers for 3 mins on each side until nicely charred and the pork is cooked through. Serve skewers with the beans and rice, extra chilli sauce, if you like, and lime wedges for squeezing over.


Today is National….Black Cat Day

Because of superstitious beliefs in some cultures, black cats are sometimes associated with bad luck and, sadly, are more likely to be put to sleep or wait a long time to be adopted from shelters. Black Cat Appreciation Day was launched to show people that a black cat could be the perfect cat for them, and help raise awareness about black cats in general.

If you’ve been looking for a rescue cat yourself, why not consider a black cat? Not only are the superstitions about them bringing bad luck completely untrue, but you might find a black cat to be a fantastic feline companion for you! On Black Cat Appreciation Day, a fun way to celebrate, if you own a black cat, is to take photos with your pet to share and spread awareness about the day on social media. Children can join in by drawing pictures of black cats.

Today is ……World honey bee Day

World Honey Bee Day, previously known as Honey Bee Awareness Day, is an idea put together by beekeepers in the USA, who petitioned the USDA in 2009 for an official day to honour honey bees and beekeeping. A few years down the line, people across the globe are holding a date of observation every year.

Honey Bee awareness enthusiasts will likely put a bee in your bonnet and say this is not so much a day to celebrate honey bees, as it is to promote their involvement in sustainable farming.
On this day, bee lovers everywhere decorate their gardens with lavender, borage and marjoram, the bee’s knees in pollinator lures. If you have the time and patience, bake some honey chippers and make your own honey fruit cobbler. And because you’ve been as busy as a bee all day, sit back and watch Hitchcock’s ‘The Bees’. You’ll count your blessings honey bees are nothing like South American killer bees!