Kangaroo Lake residents were left horrified as they awoke to an estimated 20,000 dead fish lining the northern end of the lake. Photo: the Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper.

Fish deaths span Murray-Darling Basin

The Darling River was once again making headlines as the muddy waters were hardly visible through a blanket of dead fish.

The Murray-Darling Basin Authority’s mantra of ‘just add water’ has had a schooling once again by Mother Nature as the kills came on the back of some of the highest inflows and floods on record.

Closer to home, residents of Kangaroo Lake were left horrified as they awoke to an estimated 20,000 dead fish lining the northern end of the lake – with bream being the main species recorded by locals and unfortunately some large Murray cod.

Goulburn Murray Water Delivery Services general manager Warren Blyth said, “GMW is aware of fish deaths at Kangaroo Lake, Third Reedy Lake and Racecourse Lake within the Kerang Lakes system.”

“Testing of water samples has confirmed the water was deoxygenated.

“Deoxygenated water can occur naturally, often due to changes in temperature,” Mr Blyth said.

“The impact of floodwaters is still prevalent in the area.

“Blue-green algae is present throughout the Torrumbarry irrigation area and contributes to deoxygenation of the water.

“We are unable to confirm the exact number of fish deaths, but believe this is mainly European carp, an invasive pest species in Australia.”

Unfortunately, golden perch and cod have been affected by this event.

“We will monitor the area for further fish deaths and will continue collecting water samples to test for any further changes,” he said.

“We will also conduct a clean-up of the dead fish at the lakes.”

GMW is continuing to cooperate with the Environment Protection Authority on this matter.

A clean-up of the fish was undertaken recently to reduce the impacts on locals and visitors.

The Koondrook and Barham Bridge Newspaper

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