Fish kills in Bellevue, Nebraska – 05/14/2004

  • September 30, 2013 at 8:30 pm #471

    Wildlife experts believe that spring runoff is responsible for
    killing dozens and dozens of fish, especially near the mouth of the
    Papio in Bellevue.

    The season brings out homeowners in droves and many are armed with
    weed killer. Once the rains kick in, those chemicals wash off into
    the storm sewers and into the waterways.

    Environmentalists aren’t entirely sure what caused the recent fish
    kill but they know what didn’t. There is no sign of industrial runoff.

    That turns suspicions to urban runoff. Fertilizers and other lawn
    products are possible culprits.

    Greg Wagner, with Nebraska Game and Parks, says, “It just depletes a
    lot of the oxygen those fish need to survive, especially in a
    waterway like the Papio Creek.”

    The Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality has identified fish
    kills in two more places along the Papio: 77th and Dodge and 25th
    Street at Highway 370 in Bellevue.

    But most of the problem is around the mouth of the Papio, where large
    river fish take advantage of rising levels and swim upstream.

    Fishermen are advised to wait a day or two after a rain before
    wetting a fishing line.

    Another key thing to remember about the kills is to leave the dead
    fish alone and anyone who sees large amounts of dead fish should
    contact Game and Parks.

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