Hundreds of dead fish found in Bethlehem Township pond, ‘never encountered before’ in Pennsylvania, USA
Green Pond in Bethlehem Township is filled with hundreds of dead fish, a problem township officials say they’ve never before encountered.
Township officials were troubled to hear the pond along Green Pond Road was filled with dead fish, and reached out to state officials Thursday seeking the reason.
A locally based Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission official said he believes the pond has so many dead fish because of the especially cold winter. Shallow bodies of water, like Green Pond, sometimes don’t have enough non-frozen water to sustain fish in cold winters, said Lee Creyer, a commission waterways conservation officer.
“There’s not much water for the fish and it becomes an oxygen problem,” he said. “It’s called winter kill.”
Creyer has never seen winter kill happen before at Green Pond but said it’s a common occurrence at other shallow bodies of water in the Lehigh Valley, especially at East Bangor Dam in East Bangor.
“It’s been a bad winter and it hits the shallow lakes,” Creyer said. “I’m sure that’s what it is.”
Several residents following plans for 261 age-restricted homes across from the pond at Green Pond Country Club also noticed all the dead fish, said Save Green Pond Marsh leader Jack Glagola. Glagola lives across from Green Pond on Farmersville Road and said he’s never seen so many dead fish in his 30 years living there.
Glagola reached out to officials at Moravian Academy, which owns the pond. A school science teacher also said she believes so many fish are dead because of the so-called winter kill, Glagola said.
Moravian Academy spokeswoman Carla Snook said the school’s headmaster also reached out to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission and was told the cold winter was likely the source.
“The thought is the fish were likely not at the top of the surface, but now that everything is melting, they’re coming up to the top,” Snook said. “Our facilities will take care of it.”
Glagola said he doesn’t believe any tests that were done in anticipation of the homes were the cause for the dead fish, but he and other residents are concerned about the area’s overall ecosystem. The Save Green Pond Marsh members oppose the homes because they’ll be built near wetlands used by migratory birds.
“We’re just concerned from a biodiversity standpoint,” Glagola said. “It’s a whole bio-system that works together with the pond and the fields.”
Courtesy of lehighvalleylive.com