Thursday, February 29, 2024
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Fish kill attributed to white-spot disease

THOUSANDS of fish were found dead in Cape York’s Normanby River recently, including an estimated 1000 barramundi, many of which were reported to be over a metre in length.

Following tests conducted by the Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) the cause of the mass fish kill is white-spot disease.

According to accidentallyoutback.com, DERM had confirmed the reports of up to a thousand fish floating in the river near Rinyirru (Lakefield) National Park. Witness reports had further estimated numbers of dead fish to be in the tens of thousands, and were mostly barramundi and jewfish.

In a statement released by DERM the fish deaths were attributed to a low water temperature of 22 degrees when tested. DERM says the low temperature caused the fish to lose their normal immune function, resulting in the spread of a naturally occurring parasite which causes damage to the gills and skin of the fish.

Lab results showed no sign of contaminants in the water samples collected from the area. However, a warning against eating sick or dead fish caught in the Normanby River continues.

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