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Archive for Monday, July 9, 2012

Heat causes fish to die in Kanza Preserve pond

Dead carp line the banks of a pond at the Kanza Southwind Nature Preserve in southwest Lawrence Monday. State officials say the heat is the most likely reason why the fish died. City crews were set to clean up the fish Monday afternoon.

Dead carp line the banks of a pond at the Kanza Southwind Nature Preserve in southwest Lawrence Monday. State officials say the heat is the most likely reason why the fish died. City crews were set to clean up the fish Monday afternoon.

July 9, 2012

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It’s a case of murder most foul at the Kanza Southwind Nature Preserve, as hundreds of dead carp — and the associated rotting fish smell — line the banks of a pond on the preserve, near 27th Street and the South Lawrence Trafficway in southwest Lawrence.

“It’s a smelly affair,” said Chuck Bever, regional fisheries supervisor with the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism.

But it’s a whodunit easily solved, Bever said.

“Generally speaking, they’re heat-related,” Bever said, explaining that the warm temperatures suck oxygen from the water, leaving little for fish. Add in decaying plant material that isn’t surviving the heat, which in turn sucks out more oxygen, and it creates risk for larger fish, Bever said.

It’s a phenomenon seen mostly in smaller ponds and lakes across Kansas.

Other than the unpleasant smell, the dead fish don’t cause any other problems, and provide an extra snack for critters and vultures, Bever said.

Mark Hecker, parks and maintenance superintendent with the city of Lawrence, which maintains the Kanza Preserve, said they hadn’t heard about the issue at Kanza until Monday, but would be sending a crew out there to clean up the fish to reduce the unpleasant smell.

Such fish kills are common during extreme heat, Hecker said.

It’ll be up to Mother Nature to save the fish.

“Basically, we need rain,” Hecker said.

Comments

kufan1146 2 years, 4 months ago

Interesting. Didn't realize extreme heat killed fish. Good thing it's currently raining!

DillonBarnes 2 years, 4 months ago

It's not about natural or unnatural environment, it's more about the size and movement of the water. Fish are dying all over the country, in man made and natural lakes. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2170363/US-Weather-Thousands-fish-die-lakes-rivers-U-S-stifling-heat-continues.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

Chris Golledge 2 years, 4 months ago

Minor quibble on the science:

"explaining that the warm temperatures suck oxygen from the water"

doesn't really explain very well. Heat is movement energy of molecules; the higher the energy, the less propensity a gas has to stay in solution within a liquid. You can think of it as a kind of stickiness between molecules; the higher velocity of a molecule, the more likely it is to break out of solution. The same principle applies for solids dissolving in a liquid, except a solid is a lower energy state than a liquid, where a gas is a higher energy state, and so a warmer liquid well hold more of a solid and less of a gas.

There is no 'suction' involved.

Had these in our pond from time to time. Mostly the fish stock recovers in 2-3 years.

labmonkey 2 years, 4 months ago

Same principle in that the rise in temperatures heat the water and cause the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide... not the other way around.

Ken Lewis 2 years, 4 months ago

There is no reason to spend resouces to clean it up. The racoons and turtles will take care of it for free.

Jayhawk1958 2 years, 4 months ago

Sounds like the work of the pro-South Lawrence Trafficway folks.

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