Algal bloom kills thousands of fish in San Francisco Bay


The bloom was detected in late July in the Oakland and Alameda areas, and dead fish have since washed ashore in the bay as well as Lake Merritt in Oakland, Calif., the department spokesperson said. Fish and Wildlife, Jordan Traverso.

“An estimated 10,000 yellowfin gobies died…along with hundreds of striped bass and hundreds of sturgeons,” and the bloom is likely impacting all aquatic species in the area “to some degree,” Traverso said.

The situation worsened earlier this week at Lake Merritt, where many dead fish began to line the shores, Oakland officials said. Parts of the lake’s shoreline were nearly covered in the carcasses of small fish, with larger fish strewn about, footage from the city and CNN affiliates, KPIX and KGO showed.
A city-hired crew removed 1,200 pounds of fish from the shores of the lake on Wednesday, continued shoreline cleanups Thursday and will remove floating material from the surface of the lake through the weekend, the city government said. on line. He recognized the unpleasant odors around the lake, adjoining a busy park and urban environment.
“You can smell — it’s not terrible, but there’s definitely a stench,” Mitchell Manburg, who has been exercising in the area, told CNN affiliate KPIX this week, before the start of the cleaning.

Algal blooms and dead fish were reported not only along the shores of Oakland and Lake Merritt, but also “for many miles north and south along the coast,” the statement said. Oakland.

Precisely what killed the fish wasn’t immediately known, but it’s “likely related to dissolved oxygen levels and/or toxins produced by algal blooms,” Traverso said.

The cause of the bloom was also unclear. The Oakland government cited several potential sources and contributing conditions.

“Generally, increased inputs of nutrients like nitrogen and phosphorus (from fertilizers and human or animal wastes), low water flows, standing water, increased intensity and duration of ‘sunshine and sustained high temperatures create the perfect conditions for these blooms,’ the city said. online publication reads.

“Current research suggests that rising temperatures and changing rainfall patterns caused by climate change are a catalyst for their growth,” the post continues.

Algae are a natural part of the ecosystem, but when overabundant, the compounds they release can build up to levels harmful to wildlife and humans, according to the California Water Quality Monitoring Council.

The state Department of Fish and Wildlife is working to sample strategic locations to “verify the extent of damage to fish and aquatic life,” Traverso said.

Oakland’s Public Works Department and its water board detected “low levels of contaminants associated with harmful algal blooms” in May, the city said. The city then posted signs warning visitors to the lake that harmful algae could be there and not to touch the water, she said.


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