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Scarab's Water has fleas in package plants

Scarab Water - Our friendly One-eyed Cyclops

Family? Perhaps not. But we loved these friendly creatures non-the-less.


John's sewage system.

When we installed our very first (trial) Scarab sewage treatment plant, at the late John Bizzell's small holding in Drummond - KZN, we were pretty anxious to see if this contraption would actually work. This was in 2002. 

John's profession was architecture, and so he designed and built the infrastructure, sewer lines and concrete works. He also wanted to see this new design work, particularly on his property. He said it would be a good test for the industry.

The small treatment system went in, connected and fired up. Tonto (aka Gary Brown - a water consultant with a jaundiced eye) came through and visited the system - went away - professionally insisting it would never work. He said "all this stuff had been tried before".

- Not by us, I told him. And if it doesn't work, we will say so.

And we haven't yet.


Durban Metro Mafia

Coincidentally,  soon thereafter Tonto's visit, Durban metro sent no less than three "officials" to inform John that he had an "illegal" package plant on his property, and should be removed, without delay - failing which, he will be issued with a fine.

However, Umgeni Water, who are the KZN water supply professionals, visited the installation, took a series of samples, and successfully completed their evaluation. Our system had out performed all others in its class.

Scarab first sewage systems for John Bizzel

Scarab system has fleas

Water Fleas - cyclops copepods

Well, I was checking the plant one weekend, when I noticed something strange in the final settlement tank.  I had never seen this anywhere before - ever. This water had always been crystal clear, but today it was cloudy. Scooping out some of the water, I found what looked it like mosquito larvae, swimming around. But these were much smaller, like a dust - many thousands of them!! 

I took a 2 litre sample home, 'state captured' my son's microscope, and then chatted to Mrs Know-it-all (aka Google). She successfully identified them as cyclops copepods,  a harmless one-eyed fresh water crustacean, commonly known as water fleas.

A good omen? Oh yes, indeed!

These creatures are often used to test water quality in rivers and dams - if they are present, and in good health, water quality is good enough to sustain life. And if something can live in Scarab's final effluent, then its got to be good.

As for the Durban Metro mafia - I told them my systems have fleas, and they never bothered me again.


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