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Some of the fish killed in the River Allow in Co Cork. Inland Fisheries Ireland

Inland Fisheries Ireland continuing investigation into 5,000 fish killed by pollution in Cork

Among the species of fish killed in the stretch of river are juvenile Atlantic salmon, brown trout, lamprey and eel.

INLAND FISHERIES IRELAND is continuing to investigate a pollution incident that killed at least 5,000 fish in the River Allow, a tributary of the Munster Blackwater in north Co Cork. 

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) said that the pollution killed the fish in a Special Area of Conservation, and that the location is a noted spawning habitat for fish.

The scale of the pollution is still being determined by IFI investigators, who said that dead fish had been found 4km downstream of the source of the pollution, which the IFI did not name. 

The incident occured over the weekend but was only reported yesterday by local anglers.

In a statement posted on Facebook, the Kanturk Trout Anglers Association said the group was “devastated on multiple fronts by this shocking incident” and that it had been forced to cancel an upcoming competition, which it described as “much less important” than the fish kill. 

“What a shame that what should have been a celebration of our sport an a positive impact on the local economy is now gone,” the post read, adding that it was suspending all angling along the stretch of the affected area. 

Among the species of fish killed in the stretch of river are juvenile Atlantic salmon, brown trout, lamprey, eel, stone loach, roach, and dace.

The river also supports a population of freshwater pearl mussels. 

“At this moment in time, we have no idea what effect this pollution has had on the freshwater mussel,” Michael Touhy of the Kanturk association told RTÉ’s Morning Ireland programme earlier today.

The IFI said: “Water samples have been taken from the river to gather evidence of the discharge, and source point of contamination, to advance any potential prosecution.”

Seán Long, IFI director for the south west region, told RTÉ that they received a call from a local water treatment plant, informing the organisation of a spill on Sunday.

Uisce Éireann has a water treatment plant in Freemount and the body said it was investigating a reported spill there. 

Long said that the incident had set conservation back years and described it as “devastating”, particularly for local anglers. 

The IFI has urged the public to report instances of fish kills, water pollution, habitat destruction, or illegal fishing to our confidential 24/7 number, 0818 34 74 24.

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