Catfish Cleaning Foreclosed Swimming Pools

Creatures are cheaper than chemicals amid foreclosure boom

Friday, Sep 4, 2009  |  Updated 2:09 PM EDT
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Fishy Situation

National Geographic/Getty Images

This catfish can help keep a swimming pool clean.

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Fishy Situation

In Wellington, catfish are being used to clean the scummy pools of abandoned homes.
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Bottom feeders in the foreclosed home market usually refers to the two legged kind, but in one Florida town, they're being used to clean swimming pools.

Debra Mitchell, a code enforcement officer in Wellington, said the town is using catfish to clean pools in homes foreclosed on amid the devastated housing market. Officials were previously spending nearly $7,000 a month of taxpayer funds on chemicals to keep the stagnant pools sanitary.

"Some of us got clever and decided to try the fish-eating...er algae eating fish," Mitchell told NBC affiliate WPTV-5.

At a typical home, the town drops 15 algae-eating fish in the pool to keep the water clean. In addition to being a potential health hazard, Mitchell believes that cleaner more sanitary pools will make the houses more attractive to buyers, as will the lower fees for upkeep.

Get more: WPTV

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