#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 11°C Saturday 29 January 2022

"Catastrophic" - fish kill in Limerick river wipes out trout population

“Virtually nothing has been left alive,” say Inland Fisheries.

Image: Shutterstock/L@rRy

A HUGE FISH kill on the Drumcamogue River in Co Limerick has been described as “catastrophic” by a senior representative of Ireland’s Inland Fisheries.

“Virtually nothing has been left alive,” Michael Fitzsimons, senior fisheries environmental officer with Inland Fisheries, told RTE’s Morning Ireland.

This was a very important spawning stream, the most productive area of the river, and it’s almost a total loss. I think I saw one fish alive during my inspection.

Almost all of the nearly 5,000 dead fish recovered were trout, with some salmon, loach and stickleback found dead also.

While the exact cause of the kill is not yet officially known, Fitzsimons did confirm that a “chemical spill or organic discharge” is the most likely culprit.

if1 A selection of some of the dead fish found on the Drumcamogue river Source: Inland Fisheries

“This is an agricultural area, and whatever did this was a very strong effluent which has since passed,” he said.

The most powerful effluent in a situation like this is often silage, but I can’t say if this has happened accidentally as we don’t know as yet.
The plume has passed, so the only way to trace this now is to get on the ground and start searching and walking.

Tipperary and Limerick County Councils are working together to try and trace the reason for the spill around farms in the local area.

Fitzsimons added that if sufficient evidence of dubious activity is found there would be grounds for charges and prosecution of the offenders.

Read: Teenage boy dies after River Shannon swimming incident

Read: 26 people have been rescued from the freezing River Foyle after their canoes capsized

Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel