Meridian Star

State/Region

July 2, 2013

Algae, low oxygen cause fish kill on Miss. coast

JACKSON, Miss. —

Two state agencies say algae blooms and a lack of oxygen in the water are responsible for a fish kill on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
 
Dead fish started washing up early Monday on beaches in Hancock and Harrison counties and on Cat Island. That's according to a news release from the Department of Environmental Quality and the Department of Marine Resources.
 
The chief scientific officer for the Department of Marine Resources, Kelly Lucas, says there were widespread areas of low dissolved oxygen. He also says there were high concentrations of microscopic algae that cause blooms known as "red tide." He says the algae are nontoxic but can clog the gills of fish.
 
The news release says hot summer temperatures can cause areas of very low or no oxygen.

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