Crimson Lake ice melt reveals thousands of dead fish

By Jessie Weisner (Twitter: @Jessie__Weisner)
May 8, 2018 - 2:51pm Updated: May 9, 2018 - 10:01am

Dead fish have washed up on the shore of Crimson Lake, and it seems the deep-freeze over the winter months is the reason why.
 
“Winter kill occurs in frozen lakes and ponds where the exchange of gases between the water below the ice and the air above is not enough to maintain oxygen levels that support fish.” Alberta Environment and Parks said in a statement.

Crimson Lake has a history of ‘winter kill’ because it isn’t deeper than a few metres in most places.

Officials say the longer than average ice and snow cover, combined with the shallow lake, meant the oxygen was depleted before the stores could start to restore themselves.

However, the thousands of dead fish was a little alarming to some, but Alberta Parks and Lakes says the lake is replenished with fish often, given the frequency of winter-kill events.

“Alberta Environment and Parks will assess this event to determine if the die-off was complete or partial, and consider management actions once this determination has been made.”

The province also says Mother Nature will clean up the lake in short order.

Crimson Lake is about 18 kilometres northwest of Rocky Mountain House.

 

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