Fish die of oxygen starvation

AN INVESTIGATION is continuing today after up to 100 fish were killed in a lake in Trimley St Mary. Environment Agency ecological expert Dr Ros Wright told the Evening Star the fish, mostly trout, died in Loompit, a freshwater lake close to the River Orwell, after a build up of natural toxins.

AN INVESTIGATION is continuing today after up to 100 fish were killed in a lake in Trimley St Mary.

Environment Agency ecological expert Dr Ros Wright told the Evening Star the fish, mostly trout, died in Loompit, a freshwater lake close to the River Orwell, after a build up of natural toxins.

She said: "It was reported on August 3 by the chairman of the fishing club that there was a problem. We went out to the lake and checked it that day."

Samples were taken of the lake and sent of to the University of Dundee for testing.

Dr Wright said: "There are signs of blue green algae. The results showed colonies of microcystis, which creates a toxin called microcystin.

"Trout are sensitive to this toxin and about 100 fish have been killed."

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The investigation is still ongoing but Dr Wright added that recent atmospheric conditions had caused a drop in oxygen levels in the lake.

She said: "It is a natural event and it is just unlucky, it is called natural toxic bloom and is quite common."

Keen angler Derek Stone, from Trimley, was fishing at Loompit on Friday.

A member of the Suffolk Fly-Fishing Club he said he had been sent an Email message about the dead fish.

He said: "The message said they found several dead fish. Unfortunately there's several shallow patches so the water gets very warm.

Mr Stone said the problem had been recorded in the past.

He added: "It has happened in previous years when we've had hot summers. I think it was about five years ago we lost about 150 fish, they were just floating in shoals.

"It's something we have to put up with now and again."

Christine Ash, of Battisford, honorary member of the club said: "Its not unusual to have what we call a fish kill at this time of year."

Do you know of any fish that have been killed in this way? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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