Foamy discharge pours into Stony Run

Stony Run, Wyman Park stream plagued by sewage spills a few months ago, was hit Friday morning by a mysterious, foamy discharge. (Lynne Parks / September 27, 2013)

Stony Run, a stream through Baltimore's Wyman Park that's been plagued by sewage spills over the years, was fouled Friday by a mysterious foamy discharge.

Lynne Parks said while she was birding in the park around 10 a.m. she spotted foamy, milky water pouring into the stream from a drainage pipe below the Steven Muller Building at Johns Hopkins University. She said it smelled a bit like detergent but also some other "sharp" substance that made her nose sting slightly.

 "As you know," she added in an email, "it's Fall migration and there are more birds here than usual seeking food in this green spot along their journey. Plenty of dogs play in the stream too."

Jeffrey Raymond, city public works spokesman, said the discharge had stopped by the time investigators got there.  By early afternoon, evidence of the discharge still lingered, though.

Asked if investigators knew what the discharge was or where it came from, Raymond replied:

"Its hard to tell for sure, especially in cases like this where the discharge is relatively brief, but it could be a car washing operation that popped up nearby."

Stony Run was hit by sewage spills at least twice in June. As the Baltimore Brew reported then, that stretch of the Jones Falls tributary has suffered repeated leaks and spills.