(WFRV) – The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has announced a large-scale fish die-off has been reported in the Fox River and the lower Green Bay waters.
According to a release, reports of dead fish began flooding the DNR staff on June 18, and on June 20, members of the DNR started monitoring the situation.
“At this time, the water quality samples collected have been normal and the reason for the die-off is unknown. It appears that species impacted consist mostly of channel catfish, carp, and sheepshead,” said the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.
The majority of dead fish are being found downstream of the De Pere Dam and into the Bay of Green Bay, but some have been reported as far north as southern Door County and upstream on the Fox River near the Wrightstown Dam.
The DNR says they do not know where the fish originated from and it is possible that the strong winds over the last few weeks are pushing the fish north into Green Bay.
“Many of the dead fish we’ve recovered have, unfortunately, been too decomposed for testing. We need to conduct necessary disease testing to try and understand why this is happening. It’s important that anyone who finds either dying or freshly dead fish contact us immediately,” said David Boyarski, DNR Northeast District Fisheries Supervisor.
The DNR says they have recovered one freshly deceased catfish on Sunday, June 26, and are currently testing the cause of death by DNR’s Fish Health Veterinarians.
The DNR is asking the community to report any fish that cannot maintain their balance or are floating on the surface but still filling. Freshly dead fish have pink gills as well. You are asked to report any freshly dead fish to Jason Breeggemann, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Green Bay Area Fisheries Biologist.
To contact Breeggemann, you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (920) 662-5480.
The DNR recommends humans and their pets should never consume dead or visibly sick fish. Anglers are urged to thoroughly cook their catch and follow the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s food safety guidelines.