Thousands of dead octopuses, starfish and other sea creatures have recently washed up on the shores of the remote Russian peninsula of Kamchatka. The normally pristine waters surrounding Kamchatka have become discolored and developed an odd smell, say locals. Surfers say the water is mildly burning their eyes.
It turns out an unidentified pollution event may have spilled a slew of toxic chemicals into the water, according to recent news reports.
After reports from surfers and locals surfaced, divers confirmed a widespread mass die-off, and Greenpeace Russia called it an “ecological disaster,” according to The Guardian. Widely circulated photos and videos of the dead creatures sparked outcry from the public and speculation from local news outlets as to what could have caused it, CBS News reported.
The pollution seems to have badly hit the sea creatures that live at the bottom of the seafloor, wiping out as many as 95% of them in Kamchatka’s Avacha Bay, Ivan Usatov, a researcher at the Kronotsky Reserve and the Pacific Institute of Geography Kamchatka Gov. Vladimir Solodov, according to the Kamchatka government website. Usatov and other researchers studied the area around Avacha Bay by taking samples and diving to the sea-floor. “Some large fish, shrimps, crabs have survived, but in very small numbers,” Usatov said. But “the condition of marine mammals and birds is normal. On the shore, we also did not find any emissions of large dead sea animals, birds.”
It’s likely that this event severely disrupted the food chain as the animals that feed on those bottom-dwelling creatures will also die, the researchers said.
Last week, officials blamed the scores of dead animals on stormy weather. But a recent analysis of water samples revealed that it was contaminated with a number of potentially dangerous substances. The samples contained petroleum products, some of which were at levels that were four times above normal, Aleksei Kumarkov, the region’s acting Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology said, according to CBS News.
Courtesy of livescience.com
Thousands of dead fish, crabs, eels and other marine life wash up, ‘never seen before’, on the shores of South Florida’s Biscayne Bay, USA #Fish #Crabs #eels #Octopus#Shrimp #Florida #BiscayneBay #USA
Thousands of dead fish and other sea life washed up this week on the shores of South Florida’s Biscayne Bay.
The fish kill was first reported on Monday. Members of Miami Waterkeeper, an advocacy group, saw about a dozen dead fish when they went out to conduct weekly water sampling. Then reports of dead fish, shrimp, crab, eels, octopus and other animals came in from North Miami to Virginia Key.
“I’ve never seen anything like this,” local resident Kathryn Mikesell told New Times. She has swam in the bay at least three mornings a week for five years.
Researchers and government agencies are still investigating the cause, but indicators point to very warm water temperatures and low levels of dissolved oxygen in the water, according to a news release from Miami Waterkeeper.
“It’s an emergency. The bay is not in a good place right now,” Piero Gardinali, an associate professor at Florida International University who is helping investigate the fish kill, told New Times. “It’s a warning sign.”
In addition to the dead fish, a large group of rays, believed to be struggling to breathe, huddled along the shoreline near the Pelican Harbor Seabird Station, a bird rescue and rehabilitation facility on Biscayne Bay. Personnel from a nearby science aquarium used soaker hoses and air pumps to aerate the corner of the bay where the rays had taken refuge to save them.
Fish and other underwater marine life rely on dissolved oxygen in the water to survive. Warm waters bring those levels down. The Waterkeeper noted very high water temperatures of about 90 degrees in the area where the fish kill was first discovered.
Algae blooms can also cause low oxygen levels, but the Waterkeeper said in an update Thursday that there was no evidence of a toxic bloom. They think an ongoing die-off of sea grass, which produces oxygen, could be a main factor that led to the fish kill.
More than 20 square miles of seagrass has disappeared from the bay in recent years, according to the Waterkeeper. A study last year from NOAA warned that the bay’s ecosystem was on the verge of a “regime shift”. The study found increasing levels of nutrients in the water, which causes numerous impacts that are detrimental to marine habitats.
“We are passing a tipping point for the bay not being able to support any life – literally overnight, the bay became a dead zone,” Miami Waterkeeper said of this week’s fish kill.
“This event is not a ‘normal occurrence,’ but rather a sign that something is seriously out of balance in our bay.”
Courtesy of weather.com
Florida’s southwest coast, a ribbon of inlets and barrier islands normally brimming with wildlife, has become a red tide slaughterhouse this summer.
Dead fish by the thousands have clogged inlets and canals. Since Sunday, 10 dead Goliath grouper, the massive reef fish that can live four decades or more, have floated to the surface. At least 90 sea turtles have been found stranded as the tide stretches well into nesting season. And Tuesday, as hundreds of residents packed a standing-room-only Cape Coral yacht club to hear about the federal government’s efforts to deal with water conditions, a dead manatee washed up at a nearby boat ramp.
The list goes on: earlier this month the carcass of a whale shark was found on a Sanibel beach with red tide in its muscles, liver, intestines and stomach. Hundreds of double-breasted cormorants, brown pelicans and other seabirds have been sickened or died.
Coupled with a massive blue-green algae bloom that spread across Lake Okeechobee and snaked down the Caloosahatchee River in June, the dire conditions have infuriated businesses and residents, and drawn national attention to the normally quiet tourist towns.
“This is horrific what we’re enduring now, but it needs to be a wake-up call to people that clean water is important to more than just wildlife,” said Heather Barron, a veterinarian and research director at Sanibel’s CROW Clinic wildlife rescue center, which began treating poisoned birds as early as October. “As the person dealing with all these hundreds of dying animals, I’m upset.”
Courtesy of miamiherald.com
Hundreds of dead fish, manatees, sea turtles, eels and other marine life wash up in Boca Grande, Florida, USA
Charter boat captain Chris Oneill videotaped those dead manatees, Tuesday, and posted the video to his Facebook page. The video has since been viewed more than a million times and drawn attention to the area’s fish kills.
“I haven’t been able to fish for a week, since mid-last week, because fish started dying and we’re not going to take people out here and subject them to these conditions because there are potential health concerns as well,” Oneill said.
Hundreds of dead fish were crowding Boca Grande’s coastline. Maggots were seen eating the rotting fish, which were emitting a strong odor.
Oneill counted more than 40 endangered Goliath Groupers washed up on the beach this week, ranging from 10 pounds to 400 pounds.
“Black grouper, gag grouper, red grouper, trout, eel, puffer fish, everything you could imagine is right here in this weed line that’s washed up the last couple days,” he said as he pointed out the rotting fish.
Guests were also frustrated by the fish kills. The beach was mostly empty, Wednesday, with the exception of a couple of visitors who were checking out the dead fish for themselves.
“We’ve been hanging out at the pool because… look, there’s no one hanging out at the beach. It’s terrible,” said one visitor. “We have another family vacation planned without kids in August and we’re not sure we’re going to come. If there’s red ride, we’re definitely not coming.”
The fish kills come as the National Weather Service issued beach hazards statements for red tide for coastal northern Lee County and coastal Sarasota County.
Captain Oneill is not sure what is causing the red tide, but notes after Lake Okeechobee water releases, Southwest Florida’s coasts regularly have fish kills.
“I can’t put my finger on what exactly the problem is, but I can certainly tell you any time they dump that lake, and the discharge comes out of the mouth of the Caloosahatchee River, within a week we start seeing significant kills along our shorelines here in Southwest Florida,” he said. “It’s sad to see that so much death is happening. I’ve only been here 15 years, and year after year I see things like this. This is the worst I’ve seen, and I’ve yet to see anyone out here assessing the problem or trying to figure it out.”
Courtesy of abcactionnews.com
Hundreds of dead fish of different species, and other aquatic animals have been found floating in the river Halda for the last couple of days.
The dead fish are posing a serious threat to the aquatic biodiversity of Bangladesh’s largest natural breeding ground for carp.
According to the Department of Fisheries lab, the level of dissolved oxygen (DO) went below 1mg per litre on an average against the required level of at least 5mg per litre.
According to the District Fisheries Office, the level of dissolved oxygen was found low in the two feeder canals of the river. In some points, the level of ammonia was found to be 0.5-1.5ppm against the tolerable limit of 0.01ppm.
The high concentration of ammonia in water makes it difficult for aquatic organisms to sufficiently excrete the toxicant, leading to toxic build-up in internal tissues and blood, which leads to their death.
Humans need air to breathe, and the aquatic organisms need dissolved oxygen to respire. It is necessary for the survival of fish, invertebrates, bacteria, and underwater plants. Dissolved oxygen is also needed for the decomposition of organic matter.
Locals said the water of Halda River turned pitch-black on June 20, spreading the rotten stench of dead fish.
Following the matter, the locals formed a human chain at Madunaghat area on June 23, demanding that the river be saved from industrial pollution.
Courtesy of dhakatribune.com