Council urges people not to rescue troubled fish

Scott Blacker from Sea Life collecting the dead fish while a portable pump is brought in to help reo

Scott Blacker from Sea Life collecting the dead fish while a portable pump is brought in to help reoxygenate the water. Picture: George Ryan - Credit: George Ryan

Members of the public have been asked not to remove fish from a lake where hundreds have died.

On September 10, hot weather caused oxygen levels to drop in the Waterways ornamental lake on Great Yarmouth seafront.

Over the coming days hundreds of fish died and floated to top of the water.

A spokesman for Great Yarmouth Borough Council said: “The sudden death of the fish in The Waterways is due to low oxygen levels in the water, thought to be linked to the weather conditions. While this is sad, what has happened is a purely natural phenomenon that is not uncommon on waterways across the UK at this time of year.

“After advising the Environment Agency, staff from Great Yarmouth Borough Council and GYB Services Ltd, the council’s operational partner, have been working proactively since Monday with experts from Sealife Centre Great Yarmouth to tackle the matter.

“Since Monday afternoon, aeration pumps have been in operation 24/7 and some 552 cubic metres of new fresh water has been added to help put more oxygen into the water. Sealife Centre staff, who first visited the site on Monday, re-visited on Tuesday and recorded an increase in both water oxygen levels and fish activity levels. They will be asked to visit again later this week to provide another update.

“The dead fish are being removed by staff from GYB Services Ltd, who have a regular presence in the area. Some of the dead fish on the surface are thought to have died earlier in the week and have now floated to the surface.

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“People are asked not to try to remove the fish from their habitat, due to the health and safety risk of the operation. Any removal of fish must be left to the experts, who have the correct approvals. While it can be distressing, people should remember that everything possible is being done to help the fish and that the conditions are steadily improving for them.”