Departments of water, fisheries investigate South Yunderup fish deaths

The departments of water and fisheries are investigating reports of hundreds of dead fish found in the Murray River on Wednesday.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Water confirmed the investigation, after members of the public called in sightings of the fish floating through South Yunderup.

An eye-witness said only bream seemed to be affected in the fish kill, however hundreds were spread over large distances and in “groups scattered along the foreshore”.

“I can see no other dead species such as blowies or trumpeters which are usually quite prevalent in this area,” said the concerned local.

“There is also a marked lack of water birds such as cormorants and pelicans which also usually frequent this part of the river.”

A Department of Water spokeswoman said initial estimates were approximately 3000 fish of mixed species have died.

An investigation is underway into the incident and fish and water samples have been collected for further testing.

The fish tissue samples would be analysed by the Department of Fisheries’ Fish Health Unit.

“Departmental officers are continuing to monitor the situation and will collect further samples as required,” she said.

“Contact with dead fish should be avoided and the Department of Health advises against eating or handling fish found in these circumstances, or recreating in waterways during a fish kill or algal bloom event.”

The departments have urged people to continue reporting any fish deaths to the Department of Fisheries FishWatch on 1800 815 507.