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April 8, 2013

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Fish kill still mystery as 250kg hauled out

MORE than 250 kilograms of dead fish had been taken out of waterways in Songjiang District by yesterday after nearby residents complained about the stink from the fish washing up on the river banks since last Monday.

Nearly all the dead fish, mainly various types of carp, had been removed by yesterday, water authorities said, but the reason for the large fish kill was not yet known.

Samples of the dead fish were sent to the agricultural commission for tests to determine the cause of their deaths.

Some think the fish might have been drugged by illegal fishers, but no toxins had been found in the water.

The tests are still being done, authorities said.

Residents said floating dead fish were first found on April 1 and washed up in abundance along Sijing Pond and Dongjiang Harbor in the next few days.

An official with Songjiang Water Bureau, surnamed Gao, speculated the fish had been drugged because small fish died first, followed by the death of big fish in groups.

The small fish died earlier because they're more sensitive to toxins.

Gao declined to give his full name.

All the dead fish plucked out of the water were buried safely, agricultural authorities said.

The water quality is within safe levels, said Songjiang District environmental protection bureau.

The bureau has ruled out pollution discharges because no chemical plants but only residential complexes are near the water.

Some believed the fish were electrically shocked, possibly by illegal fishers, or were affected by climate changes.

Teams will continue to clean up the waterways as some small dead fish remained in the reeds and water plants downstream.

Residents said they were at ease after the rotten fish bodies, which would breed bacteria, were removed from the water.

Sijing Pond is a scenic waterway in Sijing Town in suburban Songjiang District.

Residents said the stinky smell has prevented them from taking a stroll along the water's edge.

Songjiang District government officials said they will keep on tracking and taking out any dead fish.


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